Warcraft Review

First of all, I have never played any of the Warcraft games. They seem like a lot of fun, but for whatever reason they never successfully lured me in. Perhaps that is why I was never too excited for this film, but what did excite me was director Duncan Jones. Moon is by far one of my favorite films, so I was hoping he would make the first truly great video game adaptation. According to most critics he did not, but I believe he is on the right track.
They’re Stronger, Be Smarter
While many may not think so, there are quite a few positives to this film. The orcs themselves are very impressive both from a technical and storytelling perspective. If there are any characters you care for, it is for several of the orc characters. This is because the film took some time to develop them and allow us to understand their way of life. When I saw the first trailer I thought the CGI for the orcs looked pretty bad, but the final product is actually quite impressive. The way the hair follicles and the pores on the orcs’ skin look are absolutely amazing. The main orc, Durotan (played by Toby Kebbell) is the most interesting character in the film. He is very conflicted and it was great seeing his arc play out in the film. Bridging the gap between the orc characters and human characters is Paula Patton’s Garona. I am not a huge fan of Paula Patton. I have seen her in a few films but never thought she was a good actress. Well, she does a great job in this film. Her character is probably the second most complex and she handles all of the material remarkably well. Like Durotan she is conflicted, but for different reasons. She is half orc and half human, making it difficult for her to choose one side or another. Of the human characters I liked Travis Fimmel’s Lothar the most. Occasionally the acting is not what it should be, but I found myself consistently rooting for him. Perhaps that is because Fimmel gives a charming enough performance. The rest of the human characters are not given nearly enough development, but that is something I will discuss a little later on. The cinematography is quite great and there are even a few really interesting techniques used by director Duncan Jones. Without spoiling anything, there is a scene involving translation between the humans and orcs, and the way the scene unfolds is genius.
For Orcs There Is No Other Life Than War
The film has some really interesting concepts, but the execution is not quite there. I mentioned how the rest of the human characters (except for Lothar) are not given much character development at all. The film wants you to sympathize with certain human characters, but so little time is spent with them that you do not really care for any of them. Even with Lothar, who gets the most screen time of all the human characters, you never really quite connect with him as a character. Similarly to my complaints concerning other films such as Batman V Superman or X-Men: Apocalypse, there is too much going on. Too many characters and too many plot points jammed into one film. The plot points are honestly handled fairly well, but it is the overabundance of characters that really brings it down. Another major low for the film is the editing. Sometimes the film is able to seamlessly transition from scene to scene. Other times it feels like the editors had no idea how to transition, so they inserted a cross dissolve and called it a day. Not to mention that the beginning and ending of the film are so abrupt that it came across as laughable.
Closing Remarks
Overall, this is a severely flawed film. There is quite a bit of good, but a lot of bad as well. I know it has been underperforming in the American Box Office, which is mainly due to all the negative reviews. While I do not think it is as bad as most reviews would have you believe, it is worse than I expected. If it ever spawns a sequel I hope they are able to juggle the characters much better and hire some better editors.
warcraft

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One thought on “Warcraft Review

  1. Totally agree with you on Paula Patton. I can’t stand her but for some reason she seemed “perfect” in this role. Not a gamer either but enjoyed “Warcraft” a bit more than you did — but it was great to read your thoughts! Nice review!

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