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First Movie Reviews - A Mixed Bag So Far

Posted by Suzie Ford on May 24, 2016  | Comments

First Movie Reviews - A Mixed Bag So Far - World of Warcraft - MMORPG.com

The first Warcraft movie reviews are in and are showing a mediocre reception at best. Variety subtitles it "Hollywood's habit of turning hit video games into unwatchable movies continues unabated" while The Wrap says "swords, sorcery and stupidity abound in game adaptation".

From The Wrap and its fairly harsh review:

Critics throw the term “soulless corporate filmmaking” around with abandon, but movies like “Warcraft” really manage to redefine the term. A film adaptation of the hugely popular MMORPG (that’s Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) “World of Warcraft,” this latest video game adaptation ranks near the bottom of the deadly genre. Imagine “Battlefield Earth” without the verve, or the unintentional comedy, and you’ve got “Warcraft.”

And from Variety with its middle of the road review:

The epic battle at the center of “Warcraft” isn’t the clash between humans and orcs. That’s just what takes up roughly two hours of screen time. The true conflict comes from filmmakers trying to tell a story with soul and struggling against the inherent ridiculousness of the commodity they’re working with. It shouldn’t take a mage to foresee that this pricey and preposterous adaptation of an online gaming phenomenon was preordained for artistic mediocrity.

From The Hollywood Reporter with its mainly positive review:

Combining primitive textures (hides and sun-bleached bones) with the glowing whoosh of magical elements, Warcraft is a big-screen, 3D game that the viewer enters, to the martial beats of the elegantly ominous score by Ramin Djawadi (composer of the Game of Thrones theme). Its use of multiple cameras to film the motion capture performers in the same take as those playing human characters is one of the ways that it’s new. And then there’s Durotan’s eyes, and Garona’s grit. Dramatically and technically, Warcraft gives the concept of “hybrid” new punch.

From Kotaku's review:

Rather than tapping into the goofy core that makes a game like World of Warcraft interesting, the Warcraft movie aims for grittiness, missing the mark quite a bit. It just doesn’t work. The lore is too campy. This is a world where a mage’s most popular spell transforms his enemies into sheep, yet Warcraft acts as if it’s a green-screen version of Game of Thrones. At my theater, the biggest laughs came not from the occasional bouts of slapstick comedy but from the miserable archmages of Dalaran, whose CGI-enhanced eyes look especially absurd when you’re supposed to take them seriously.

We'll keep you posted as more reviews roll in for the movie that is set to hit screens in several countries later this week.

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Suzie Ford / Suzie is the Associate Editor and News Manager at MMORPG.com. Follow her on Twitter @MMORPGMom