3 June 2016

Warcraft: The Beginning

I have played a lot of World of Warcraft in the past. From vanilla up until Wrath you could say I was almost hardcore. Not anymore anyway: I played most of Pandaria things, but didn't complete any raids and I haven't touched Warlords (even tough I bought it). I love the stories that Chris Metzen and company are telling through the popular MMORPG.

Fast forward to 2016 and we finally get a movie about all these stories. I love the other two movies Duncan Jones directed (Moon and Source Code), and I love Travis Fimmel as Ragnar in Vikings, so I got pretty excited about this one. All the fuzz and news surrounding the premier got me excited. All the trailers got me excited. I effectively was on the hype train. And then the critics came along. 30 and something in meta-critic, less than 30% in rotten tomatoes and countless reviews of hatred and disdain towards Warcraft.

And then came the fans: when the movie finally premiered on the 27th of may in several countries (not including USA, China or UK) first in line fans voted for it on the likes of IMDB for an astounding average of 9. Agreed those were mostly fanboys, but on the other hand, in rotten tomatoes it is only David Lynch and the likes fanboys. As of the writing of this, Warcraft: The Beginning has a 8 of public score and a 3.6 of meta-critic which is the biggest gap to my knowledge on a movie with a score of 8 and up (around 1,000 of those on IMDB). I do not know what happened or what explains this. Maybe this gap will reduce or disappear over time. Or maybe it will increase (who knows).

On my side of things, I saw the movie yesterday with four friends, one of them a WoW player, while the other three have never played any Warcraft games. The thing is we all liked it, scoring it between 7 and 9 over 10 I would say. It could have been better, mostly due to the short duration and some really silly lines in the script. Oh, the script. That scene in which Anduin is in a lot of pain, and he's with Garona. Both Fimmel and Patton are acting it well here. and then Anduin says something like "Right now I am feeling more pain than ever in my life". What the fuck? What the fuck was that? from the events happening and the acting you could already tell that, so why that sentence. WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY? dialogue is only for when it is needed, not for exposition of obvious things in this ridiculous manner. For some reason the Orc lines where much less silly across the movie, and Durotan and Gul'dan where awesome.

But it is a highly enjoyable movie, it's fun, it's intense, some of the characters are highly likable and/or memorable, and it has at least two of those moments for which we go to see this kind of epic movies, the kind of 'freeeeeedooooooom' moment from Braveheart that makes your guts twist and turn in a mixed bag of feelings, between anger and exaltation, visceral epicness in its purest form.

I can only hope that it performs well in the box office (specially in USA), so we get more of these. Duncan Jones and Blizzard have already expressed their intention to do at least three of them. And there are three Warcraft games (old RTS, not WoW). And that could mean that the end of the third movie is Mount Hyjal. The freaking battle for mount Hyjal. Fuck me hard, and then let me see that before I die. HYJAL. Oh, and I propose Caity Lozt for Tyrande Whisperwind.

And by the way, for me it was a 9/10. Not the prince that was promised, but definitely the best video game movie so far, and a good epic fantasy movie overall (way better than The Two Towers for sure).