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Movie Review: Dragonlance – Dragons of Autumn Twilight

This film is bad. Really bad. You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mindbogglingly bad it is. I mean you might have been appalled by The Crystal Skull but that’s just peanuts to this. Listen…

I read the Dragonlance books as a teenager and am, even as we speak, playing through the AD&D Modules. I was dead excited to hear there was a film and even enjoyed watching it for the first ten minutes. It begins at a quite relaxed pace, introducing the characters with some humorous banter and bloodless action. But this is soon replaced by break-neck pacing. The plot feels as if it is on fast-forward, with a lot being told in exposition and chunks of the story being missed out altogether. With a large cast of characters they get no more than a handful of lines each, and several are left standing around with very little to do. Ultimately 90 minutes just isn’t a sufficient run-time to do the story justice.

dragonlance

The animation is mostly 80s style 2D, with the jarring addition of 3D CGI for the Dragons and Draconians. The two styles just don’t mesh and make the production look amateurish. The bloodless action is replaced by amazingly inconsistent gore. One moment we are looking at Hobgoblins dying in pools of blood, the next the ground is perfectly clean! Continuity errors like this persist throughout the film, almost every time the viewpoint changes, and their lip-synching is about as good as mine!

So I was enormously disappointed and appalled to think that this might be anyone’s introduction to Dragonlance.  So do yourself a favour and don’t let this film ruin what could be a wonderful experience. Read the books.

Links

Official Dragonlance Movie Site

Buy the DVD on Amazon (if you must)

Buy the books on Amazon (that’s better)

6 replies on “Movie Review: Dragonlance – Dragons of Autumn Twilight”

The biggest crime this film makes is that it gives away 'the twist' ahead of time. If you've read the books you'll know what I'm referring to. It's a bit like being told the ending to Sixth Sense before you see it – it ruins the experience and you can't go back and unknow it. So it really is horrible for Dragonlance virgins! Fortunately, the only people who are likely to buy it will be fans already. The trailer certainly isn't going to seduce anyone.
Dragonlance deserves a lot better. I'm sure some day it will be made into a fantastic movie. Today is not that day.

I think the movie would have also benefited from using more seasoned voice actors instead of a bunch of almost has-beens. Jason Marsden is probably about the only one that looks like a decent fit.

I did see the trailer, though, and I nearly thought it was made in the 80s. It was like a flash back to some of the really cheesy animation I would have seen when I watched cartoons as a kid. Even the animated Hobbit movie had better stuff.

Oh. My. Gosh. You are SO right! I saw this movie in the store and bought it and told the kids.. Oh man! this is going to be AWESOME! I read the books as a teen and LOVED them, so the movie is sure to be pretty good. I was so disappointed in the movie. I found the original books at a used book store and brought them home. My avid readers were so turned off by the movie, they wouldn't touch the books.

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Categories
Blog Movie Reviews Movies/Film

Movie Review: Dragonlance – Dragons of Autumn Twilight

This film is bad. Really bad. You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mindbogglingly bad it is. I mean you might have been appalled by The Crystal Skull but that’s just peanuts to this. Listen…

I read the Dragonlance books as a teenager and am, even as we speak, playing through the AD&D Modules. I was dead excited to hear there was a film and even enjoyed watching it for the first ten minutes. It begins at a quite relaxed pace, introducing the characters with some humorous banter and bloodless action. But this is soon replaced by break-neck pacing. The plot feels as if it is on fast-forward, with a lot being told in exposition and chunks of the story being missed out altogether. With a large cast of characters they get no more than a handful of lines each, and several are left standing around with very little to do. Ultimately 90 minutes just isn’t a sufficient run-time to do the story justice.

dragonlance

The animation is mostly 80s style 2D, with the jarring addition of 3D CGI for the Dragons and Draconians. The two styles just don’t mesh and make the production look amateurish. The bloodless action is replaced by amazingly inconsistent gore. One moment we are looking at Hobgoblins dying in pools of blood, the next the ground is perfectly clean! Continuity errors like this persist throughout the film, almost every time the viewpoint changes, and their lip-synching is about as good as mine!

So I was enormously disappointed and appalled to think that this might be anyone’s introduction to Dragonlance.  So do yourself a favour and don’t let this film ruin what could be a wonderful experience. Read the books.

Links

Official Dragonlance Movie Site

Buy the DVD on Amazon (if you must)

Buy the books on Amazon (that’s better)

6 replies on “Movie Review: Dragonlance – Dragons of Autumn Twilight”

The biggest crime this film makes is that it gives away 'the twist' ahead of time. If you've read the books you'll know what I'm referring to. It's a bit like being told the ending to Sixth Sense before you see it – it ruins the experience and you can't go back and unknow it. So it really is horrible for Dragonlance virgins! Fortunately, the only people who are likely to buy it will be fans already. The trailer certainly isn't going to seduce anyone.
Dragonlance deserves a lot better. I'm sure some day it will be made into a fantastic movie. Today is not that day.

I think the movie would have also benefited from using more seasoned voice actors instead of a bunch of almost has-beens. Jason Marsden is probably about the only one that looks like a decent fit.

I did see the trailer, though, and I nearly thought it was made in the 80s. It was like a flash back to some of the really cheesy animation I would have seen when I watched cartoons as a kid. Even the animated Hobbit movie had better stuff.

Oh. My. Gosh. You are SO right! I saw this movie in the store and bought it and told the kids.. Oh man! this is going to be AWESOME! I read the books as a teen and LOVED them, so the movie is sure to be pretty good. I was so disappointed in the movie. I found the original books at a used book store and brought them home. My avid readers were so turned off by the movie, they wouldn't touch the books.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *