Guest Reviews





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the Movie Club Annals ...

Dungeons and Dragons

Reviewed by FTR

   Bunions and Dragoons

"Bad guy."


I was surprised that Carelzebub could not watch D&D past the first 15 seconds. Possessed he is, sick of humor, appropriately cynical. Nicely equipped I’d say to rip a film like this to shreds faster than you can say, flying hefty bag. When asked, all he could say after the third try was that there was much too much askew with D&D. Alas, our very own silver bulletproof sycophantic cinematic Satan was overwhelmed. So, he passed on the task.

The e-mail said something like, "… take the Dungeons and Dragons challenge." More importantly, the Movie Club webmaster promised a high quality chocolate prize to the idiot who could get through the entire movie and live to write the review. So, glutton that I am for both punishment and cocoa laced confections, I watched the whole thing.

Speaks for itself.

Set in God-knows-when, and doubtless rife with insider D&D humor and hidden gags, Dung-eons and Drag-ons takes place in a world were darkness and fog permeate the environment and threaten to entomb the steel plated, Cinderella’s castle style, magic school in its cottony gray grip for forever.

There is a strong air of class envy as two distinct casts of Sumdall denizens struggle either for power and dominance over the prevailing political agenda or to steal for their living. There are at least six sub-plots going on at once with characters and effects borrowed from the full spectrum of second tier Movie Club film archives.

Representing the bad guys is a limp-wristed government official with a strange but wonderful penchant for overdramatizing the way the folds of his flowing cape waft about on the breeze he creates by walking briskly down the nearest set of stairs he can find so that he can make his flowing folds flutter. He may also have been drying his nails. His name is Profium. Maybe it should be Prophylactic or Ibuprofium. Who knows? I wouldn’t want to touch him and he does cause headaches.

Elwood has bad manners and Napoleon complex to boot.

Ibuprofuim surrounds himself with some colorful folks/henchmen. The most striking of these is a guy who can hold his breath for 107 minutes. You can tell because his lips are blue – all the time. Damodar is his name. Maybe it should be Dumbadar or Damnitdar. He’s an asshole, he cries and his character’s claim to fame is that living carnivorous linguini comes out of his ears and he wears the most inappropriate shade of gay blue lipstick.

Aside from Dumbass, I mean Damodar, there are a few trapist monks charged with operating the torture chamber gadgets in the dungeon. They become dragon-bait early on in this film and as such are really irrelevant except that I get Godivas for writing about them.

Representing innocence and good is sweetness and light herself, borrowed from a cheap knockoff of the Loveboat version of the Starwars prequel, quintessentially, sickeningly idealistic princess of an empress who’s name, Savina, is well worth mentioning except that I was too busy noting the deficiencies I found in the first five minutes of D&D to catch it.

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Don't get too close to Norda

The gang that saves the Empress’ royal bacon, her political agenda and thus the world, sort of accumulates during the course of the movie kind of like a dung beetle’s prized possession. This ball of s_ _ t of a sub-plot includes a pasty skinned red bearded dwarf with a thyroid condition, a bad taste in his mouth for injustice and horrific table manners. He’s 5 ½ feet tall he’s a Capricorn and his name is Elwood. His turnons are, sorry, I digress. I kept looking behind him for Jake the Dwarf but he must have been busy in another movie.

Then, there is an elf. She’s nearly six feet tall, black and has can openers for ears – the old-fashioned churchkey kind – and doesn’t much cotton to humans. And wait ‘till you get a gander at her breastplates. If you wanted to ditch an elf wearing a suit of armor like that you’d shove her boobs first into the side of a dark ages barn. She’d stick like a rusty lawn dart. I think she was mis-cast. She should have played Dr. Spock’s cheating alcoholic wife in Loveboat goes to Vulcan. Her name is Norda, but I think Norad would fit her better. After all, she’s packing a couple of potent looking missiles. Norplant works too.


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Taking a little target practice before the civil war.


There’s another girl in the hood. She’s a Mage (what the f - ?) from the magic school. As always, somebody needs to play the love interest so that there can exist class hatred generated sexual tension between she and the hero. That’s our girl. Marina is her name, a real dreamboat (oh shut-up, you knew that was coming). You know her character as the little lost valley girl who is forced to consort with ne’er do well’s in a bad neighborhood to survive – and survives to kiss the last noteworthy member of the group she nearly pisses, whines, moans and bitches to death. He’s a philosophical thief with a conscience that metastasizes into an epiphany. He’s accompanied by a trash-talking-with-a-New-York-ghetto-accent kleptomaniacal sidekick from In Living Color named Snails.

His name is Ridley, the hero’s that is. Yes, there is a line in this movie that goes something like this: "So, you really are talented (insert blatantly obvious pregnant pause here) Mr. Ridley." This line was perpetrated upon Ridley by Prophylactic. It happened during an exercise in filmatic fencing futility stolen from the Matrix movie playbook titled: "Superfluous Super Slow-motion Cinemagraphic Swordplay".

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This photo has not been retouched in any way.  Prophylactic really sports blue lips

So, while Ibuprophium fusses with Damnitdar, his blue-lipped henchman, to get him properly motivated to kill all the good guys, and our princess of an insanely naïve Empress has less than seven days to fight off the Clingon-esque high council’s attempt to overthrow her in the interest of maintaining the evil status-quo, and Ridley the reluctant hero turned no-longer-naughty thief with the bumbling sidekick (Snails, eew), a hostile elf (Norplant), a badly dressed dwarf (Elwood) and a PMS-ing Mage (Marina) in tow labors under his heroic burdens, they all share one common goal: Find the RODDD (Really Overemphasized Dragon Divining Device).

The plot line works something like this: If you can picture a helpless ovum in a Swarofski petri dish surrounded by steroidal spermatozoa strung out on speed set somewhere in pre-Dick Clark time, you can begin to gain a sense of the organizational logistics involved in suckering you in to watching D&D – I mean writing this screenplay.

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Hoplessly optimistic.  But can the Princess Savina's helpers save the day?

When our characters in all of their glory finally converge on the magic school and are within reach of their goal, to capture and possess the RODDD, it’s chaos, mayhem and flocks of flying dragons for most of the thirty minutes it takes to bring this movie to a merciful (for the viewer) conclusion.

Funny, the one detail the producers of D&D left out was a badly needed (yeah, right) piece of comic relief. Snails should have been hit with some flying-dragon droppings. But he gets killed instead. Mistaking him for the errant droppings, Damnitdar, fastidious bad guy that he is, tosses the poor bastard out of a high castle window.

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He's a baaaaaaaaaaaaad mutha -..., Snails

Movie Clubbers, this one has it all. There is just too much of it. It has futuristic wrist lasers, holes in space through which one can jump (naturally the bad guys can follow you when you forget to close them fast enough), a miniature minion that looks suspiciously like one of the little guys making coffee in the Men In Black movie, headquarters kitchen scene, computer generated flying dragons, lipstick wearing bouncers, glowing castle rocks, a RODDD, an obvious political and social message, holocaust cloak with gigantic hoods wearing criminals who escape from their captivity through a town square filled with completely oblivious non-holocaust cloak with gigantic hood wearing Gymkata extra rejects and Ridley.

I think Ridley is related to Kurt Thomas of Gymkata infamy myself. And I think Kurt’s parents are related too, if you know what I mean.

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Marina the love interest, annoyance and Mage

Run, don’t walk to your nearest video store and rent this movie! If you can’t watch it then you can at least do what Carelzebub likes to do with movies such as this – rent it if for nothing else than to keep it out of the hands of others who might be trying to do the same.

But beware. To mock the devotion of dedicated D&D game fans in pursuit of tearing this movie a new one, is to live the rest of your life looking under your shoulders for those pallid little basement computer room dwellers who’s wrath you have incurred. Check out the web. These guys love this movie. Norad is a Goddess to them. Elwood is a supreme being. And the golden dragons… It’s really rather scary.