Saturday, September 20, 2008

Dungeons and Dragons (2000)

I don't really have to post for this movie. There's actually only one thing that you need to know before making your decision: Marlon Wayans is in it. Now, if this wasn't such an iconic piece of material, I probably wouldn't have seen it. But I did see it, and in theaters no less. At the time I thought it was absolutely terrible, but now, 8 years and a significantly increased irony capacity later, I have officially rewatched it and deemed it edible (drugs required). Apparently Mr. Wayans also filmed Requiem for a Dream in 2000, and people seem to like that movie, so I guess he's not the end-all, say-all, might as well shit on the film before it goes through the projector type of guy (at least not back then). And with that in mind, you may actually be able to stomach his presence in this ridiculously pathetic adaptation. We're talking bad acting, terrible jokes (I like my women with a beard so you have something to hang on to [pelvic thrust, pelvic thrust]), stupid costumes and all around shitty effects, made for TV type entertainment. But as I said, with enough drugs, anything is possible. While you may spend the first 90 minutes attempting to reclaim those very same 90 minutes, the finale is pretty spectacular, featuring Thora Birch in a sweet-ass, purely aesthetic piece of "armor" riding on a dragon and attempting to kill other dragons and Jeremy Irons in the process. This absurdity is just enough (and I do mean just enough) to redeem everything that came before it. Think dwarves and elves and thieves and labyrinths and magic and class wars and the typical "cantina scene" and the almighty Council. Oh man, this movie is bad. And if you don't believe me, just check the imdb user comments (the titles are enough). Spencer seemed to find it hysterical, so I guess it all depends on the company you hold. Do not, I mean do not watch this with a cynical viewer. It will never work out. Do watch this while marvelling at how easy it is to spend $35 million dollars and speculating about what producers really think is going on in the brains of nerds. Ahh nerds, what a disgrace to your image. Movies like these are why people mock nerds and geeks and everything in between. As a sci-fi/fantasy lover (in all its mediums), I can honestly say that this movie, while hilariously underwhelming, doesn't do justice to the vast potential of the genre. I mean, come on! This is what entertainment film was made for!: Fantastic effects that can't be created or believed in person!, costumes that have been out of date for hundreds of years!, and the potential for serious social and political commentary on the definition and execution of life in the BC! I mean, take it from George Méliès and his "Le Voyage dans le Lune," made in 1902. Damn, now that's how it should be done. The saddest part is that they made a sequel and I own it. Yikes.

I deem it: "A sad chronicle in the public perception of the fantasy genre."


Mike J said...

Oh god...I think I saw this for free on a military base when I was in the tenth grade. I'm glad that you were able to enhance your enjoyment the second time around- I'm not nearly brave enough to try again.

And Méliès is so damn great...I once showed P Adams that Smashing Pumpkins video that rips off his films and I think he just about ripped my head off.

Tesla said...

Ha. I can imagine Sitney getting pretty worked up about that. Well, the original is definitely better!