UA; Action, adventure
Director: Duncan Jones
Cast: Rob Kazinsky, Travis Fimmel, Dominic Cooper, Ben Foster
This is a mammoth fantasy misadventure
Yet another massively successful online role-playing game makes the leap to the big screen. With nostalgia being the benchmark for this game-trip, there’s little of soul to keep you interested in the bizarre occurrences on screen.
At its peak, World of Warcraft had over 12 million online players and you could be any of the characters and be involved in their pursuits with ritualistic glee. But the film doesn’t involve you with that dimension. The recreation of Azeroth’s long and complicated history is not even compelling because despite the pricey CGI effects, it’s all so convoluted and fantastical that it gets hard to dig your teeth into the apportioned action thereof.
The film begins with members of the Orcish Horde, led by the evil Gul’Dan (Daniel Wu), travelling through a large green portal to Azeroth, guarded by Medivh (Ben Foster). Soon after, a young mage named Khadgar (Ben Schnetzer) incidentally discovers that a dark magic has manifested itself in the world, and with the help of a reluctant Anduin Lothar (Travis Fimmel) informs King Llane Wrynn (Dominic Cooper). So Medivh teams up with Anduin and Khadgar to capture one of the monsters and find out where ‘the Horde’ came from. The trio — along with some other canon fodder warriors — is quickly ambushed by Orcs. Eventually the half-Orc, half-human, Garona has been captured and it is she who persuades the humans to meet Durotan (Toby Kebbell), the lead orc protagonist, who has hatched a plan to defeat Gul’Dan and usher in peace between humans and Orcs. Confused already?
Well that’s the state you find yourself in while watching this film. While the action is splendid, understanding the politics of it and keeping track of what’s happening and between whom is tougher than one would expect. The complications are plenty but the coherence is severely lacking, so the depth is ephemeral at best. Character development is weak and plotting is terribly half-baked, so there’s hardly any attachment to be had. You might get impressed by the battle scenes but the hollow nature of the involvement jeopardises the enjoyment to be had from it. This is a mammoth fantasy misadventure that is most likely to increase the strain on you than entertain.
Watch the trailer of 'Warcraft' movie