Finally, a movie that actually benefits from blowing a ton of it's budget on it's all-star cast. Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves (or HAT as I love to call it), is a fun adventure movie, but it's really the efforts of the cast that make it a film worth seeing. Here is the full review.
You can clearly tell everyone involved in this film loved being in it. Chris Pine brings charisma and charm to the movie that we really haven't seen since him do since the original Wonder Woman. He is the perfect " Bard Dad Thief" character, and he is a delight in each scene he is in. And honestly this is probably the best role Michelle Rodriguez has done, she nails each scene she is in and perfectly fits the female barbarian role. Each actor does their best (and succeeds) to match the class they were cast for, and they do so wonderfully. The party is full of great actors, and the villains aren't bad either. This movie is worth going to just for the acting alone, every single person in the movie is having an incredible time in it, it shows, and it makes the movie better for it.
The special effects in the movie were excellent. They were a good combination of practical effects with CGI (with obviously a heavy lean towards CGI). There are a LOT of environments in play in this movie, and each one has a different feel to it. The effects during the Wild Shape chase scene were some of the best I've seen in recent years. This movie clearly had a huge budget between the advertising, the effects, and the cast, so it's good to see money leading to success in a movie for once, unlike the worst colossal budget movie of the last five years, The Gray Man.
I don't enjoy Dungeons and Dragons (the game), but the concept is kind of perfect for a movie franchise. Find an amiable lead, build a party around them, put the party on a cool adventure. It's fun to even just think about casting the next movie. I know they'll just do a sequel with Chris Pine and company (which is a mistake), but I really do hope they enjoy the true nature of the game and refresh it with a new locale, new quest, new stakes, and new characters. Here I'll do one, Michelle Yeoh plays the main character, a monk human, accompanied by Elf ranger Michelle Williams, Barry Keoghan as an elf rogue, Daniel Radcliffe as a half elf Warlock (for the fans), and Andy Serkis as the guest player Dragonborn. Super easy. If they did that and picked the right people and kept the budget high for effects you'd have a super franchise. The plot of this movie was meh and predictable, but that didn't stop it from being a fun time out at the movies.
Cool effects, an excellent performance from the cast, and a unique world to play in made this movie feel just like the game of it's namesake. The plot was a bit predictable and the CGI was spotty in places, but it's more than enough entertainment for the casual movie goer, and hopefully we will see the franchise explode with new faces and new concepts.