I finally got to seeing Warcraft and there’s honestly not much to talk about. It walks the tightrope of fantasy mediocracy as you’re dropped into the middle of an already moving universe. Its like being dropped into season three of a sappy version of Game of Thrones and being expected to know all the character development that happened in the seasons prior to this one. Its practically a mess of a film, but for some odd reason I dug it.
As I said, Warcraft drops you straight into Azeroth, the film’s intro has no humans in it and we’re introduced to the best character in the film, Durotan. What Toby Kebbel does with Durotan is amazing, if he was able to steal many scenes from Dawn of the Plant of the Apes away from Serkis, here he steals the whole movie. Under heavy-cgi effects, Toby Kebbel is able to create a three-dimensional, compelling character that far surpasses any of the other characters in the film. On the other side of the coin, you’ve got Lothar as the human’s representative. Lothar is played by Travis Fimmel from Vikings’s fame and he does his job, he perfectly exemplifies the virtues of the hero character whilst enduring some pretty damaging blows. Sadly, besides Lothar & Durotan, all the rest of the characters that make up the universe of Warcraft are either one-note or just atrociously written, especially the wizards.
As an effects driven film, Warcraft looks beautiful. There was only one-moment in the beginning where I doubted the realism of the orcs, but aside from that I was never taken aback from cheesy special effects are anything of the sort. The film runs smoothly for about 30 minutes and then its starts to drag awfully. Its gets painful and even though Duncan Jones takes some unexpected, worthwhile decisions that will differentiate Warcraft from other fantasy film out there, since the characters are so boring you don’t really care for the majority of the film’s runtime. So it starts of well and then hits some bumps, is it able to recover towards its grand finale? Sort of, if you’re referencing the amazing battle that happens in every fantasy film towards the end, yes, if you’re talking about the stupid side-plot revolving around the sorcerer’s apprentice, hell no. Even though you’ve got Ben Foster playing a wizard, because of Ben Schnetzer’s terrible performance as his apprentice his whole storyline is deflated as he has to travel to random places, confront demons and do a bunch of stuff that sound cool but fall flat because of him. And that’s coming from someone who incredibly liked Schnetzer’s performance in Pride.
In the end, Warcraft is a messy start that promises greatness down the road. Taking some pretty bold decisions in its first film, a nice world to really get to delve into, a terrific performance from Kebbell and his animators, plus not having restraints in regards to the torture of its protagonist which as we know promises ascension in his next chapter in life, Warcraft succeeds. Unfortunately it fails everywhere else and barely manages to cling onto the surfboard that rides the wave of mediocracy because of its slow-pacing and bad characters. Thus, I rate this film at a 60 out of 100.