World of Warcraft, The Cinematic Adventure

World of WarcraftWhen I first watched the trailer for the World of Warcraft movie I was upset. I saw a franchise that was so rich in lore, and had such a large and hardcore fan base, but such a terrible looking movie. I remember finding the trailer on my Facebook newsfeed, watching it, scrolling away, then going back to watch it again in disbelief and disappointment. At first, it looked so cliché, and so simple, I felt like it may possibly be what finally brought the mighty Blizzard Entertainment to a thaw. Today, right now, I’m here to tell you that when I was sitting in that dark theater, surrounded by tons of World of Warcraft fans hoping and praying for a miracle, and the title screen faded and the movie started… I was pleasantly surprised.

World of Warcraft 1

Now, that’s not to say I thought it was the greatest movie in the world. It just wasn’t as horrible as I was expecting. Looking back, seeing myself after I watched that trailer on Facebook, I can see a very small amount of hope shimmering in my hopeful eyes. Blizzard did not disappoint. The movie had an engaging plot, great graphics, and decent acting (again, not amazing acting, but decent). The only thing that was missing was adequate character development for most of the key characters. They only bothered developing the main Orc, and his family.

The plot may have been predictable, but I expected that after watching the trailer. Still, for other Warcraft fanatics, the plot isn’t the most important part. It’s the familiarity with the world of Azeroth, and the plot, if mishandled, could be a giant distraction from the viewer’s immersion in the realm if it’s a bad plot. If it’s too predictable, the viewer will get bored, and disengage. The plot was executed just well enough to keep the viewers entertained, and feeling like they were there at Ironforge, feeling the heat of the coals, or admiring the castles of Stormwind.

World of Warcraft 2

Speaking of the setting, I must admit I found the environmental detail as well as the character animation very realistic. Also, the magic in the film was very convincing and yet not too flashy. They gave the “spell-slinging” a very minimalist style, yet still powerful-looking. It’s hard to go into any more detail without talking about specific parts of the movie. Just know that the CGI will not be a disappointment.

The acting wasn’t the best, but it wasn’t as horrible as some movies that hit it big years before (here’s looking at you, Twilight). I enjoyed the ferocity displayed by certain characters, as well as the wisdom displayed by others. One of the characters does in fact prove dynamic as the movie goes on, but not by much. Also, as far as the characters go, you won’t find out much about who the characters were before the events of the movie. There isn’t a lot in the way character development, and they could have done a lot more in that regard. I feel like character development may have been sacrificed for the sake of keeping the viewing experience close to the two-hour window. I wanted to know so much more about the leading characters, but the movie just didn’t deliver in that regard.

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As far as Underdog Reviews go, this movie is a good one, and worth a trip to the cinema. Speaking largely from a World of Warcraft fan’s viewpoint, the movie wholeheartedly deserves a 4 out of 5 stars. To those who are unfamiliar with the movie, they may rate it closer to a 3. People who’ve lived and breathed the World of Warcraft experience can only ever expect the ending of the movie. To those who haven’t played, and truly felt the essence that is Azeroth, they may find the ending a surprise. Either rookie fan, or veteran, I recommend the movie to anyone that’s had a slight interest in the franchise.

World of Warcraft Movie Poster

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