Duncan Jones Tries So Hard To Please Fans Of ‘Warcraft‘ And Newcomers Alike.
Admittedly, I know very little about the ‘Warcraft’ universe. Usually if you know anything about the fantasy genre, you can roughly piece together an idea of what’s going on. The film adaptation of the massive online game is still so deeply rooted in source material that it’s basically too much to take in.
Filmmaker Duncan Jones was a handed an expansive universe from gaming company Blizzard after years of developmental hell. Amidst the craziest years of his personal life, Jones attempted to take this established universe & re-invent the story…all while staying true to all the crazy worlds/names/creatures. This would be a daunting task for even the most refined filmmaker but with only two major films under his belt, I think Duncan Jones got lost somewhere along the way.
With a budget of roughly $100 million more than his previous film ‘Source Code‘, Jones could have made an intriguing film but ‘Warcraft‘ has too much working against it. At times, the visual effects became so laughable. When the practical and CG blended it seemed like something out of an 80’s kid’s movie. The script was filled with bland lines that you can find in any medieval film but then would switch to a modern way of speaking for the sake of a punchline.
The fighting had no significance as well. This movie could have served from even more fight scenes. Maybe they want to build it like ‘Lord Of The Rings‘ did but for a film with war in its name, there wasn’t a whole lot. Also, I can’t forget to mention some of the choreography being so bad that you could actually see the actors slow down as they hit the green screen props.
On the other hand, the orc designs were all detailed & very unique. From tusk to skin-tone, almost every orc looked different. During close-ups, you could see great details in their face and bodies. With some bad effects, sometimes they’d get something right like orcs or the game-accurate mage spells.
I also appreciate the fact Jones took the original script and made changes to the dynamic between orcs and humans. While there was an overall war happening, each side had some drama going on within their own circle.
‘Warcraft‘ is being described as a long commercial for a cell-phone game or this generation’s ‘Battlefield Earth‘ but it’s really not that bad. There’s some real potential here but sadly, most will never see that. Obviously the filmmakers thought they were gonna get a sequel so let’s see if another film can redeem this brand.