Title – Dungeons & Dragons: Honour Among Thieves (2023)
Directors – John Francis Daley & Jonathan Goldstein (Game Night)
Cast – Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez, Justice Smith, Sophia Lillis, Regé-Jean Page, Hugh Grant, Chloe Coleman
Plot – A merry band of misfits led by the charismatic Edgin (Pine) must band together to help take down the nefarious Forge (Grant) who was at one time a friend of Edgin and now has Edgin’s daughter Kira (Coleman) under his control.
“That is one pudgy dragon!”
Review by Eddie on 15/05/2023
While it’s unarguably not quite on the same level as The Princess Bride, John Francis Daley & Jonathan Goldstein’s new cinematic vision for the Dungeons & Dragon’s universe is operating on a very similar playing field as Rob Reiner’s adored fantasy adventure classic, making it one of the most accessible and likeable such genre entries since 2007’s at the time underappreciated Stardust and one of 2023’s most enjoyable blockbusters in equal measure.
Existing as if the 2000 version of D & D never saw the light of day, this bid budgeted reimagining of the famed brand sees Daley and Goldstein bring the same amount of energy and smarts they bought to their breakout 2018 directional effort Game Night to material they clearly have an affiliation for, as the two filmmakers/screenwriters alongside writing partner Michael Gilio ensure their version of D & D is a fun and appeasing ride for newbies and long-term fans alike.
Not threatening or attempting to break new ground in a narrative sense as we follow Chris Pine’s charming bard and planner Edgin on a quest to recruit a team of misfits and outcasts to overthrow Hugh Grant’s devious Forge from a position of power and also control over Egin’s young daughter Kira, D & D may not offer anything truly unexpected to its audience but its impressive juggling of spectacle, characters and a large portion of humour that puts most so called modern comedies to shame, ensures this fun, fast and fantastical epic is as good as any recent Hollywood blockbusters.
Far less serious than many other modern day fantasy affairs, D & D is content to play it light and breezy while also throwing in more heart and soul than one might initially expect and with an on song cast that’s led by the always roguishly charming Pine, an as good as she’s ever been Michelle Rodriguez as Edgin’s long suffering partner in crime Holga, an expert comic relief turn from Justice Smith as the sometimes very unmagical magic master Simon and a memorable bit part from Bridgerton breakout star Regé-Jean Page, this version of D & D is the type of film that is impossible not to enjoy when watched with the right mindset and expectations.
Arriving to solid if not exactly spectacular numbers at the global box office before recently hitting digital home rental/purchase markets, it would be a shame to think we are not going to see more of this cinematic version of the D & D universe in the times ahead, for as it stands this modern take on the global phenomenon offers up a fantastic ride with huge potential should it continue in a similar vein in the future.
Final Say –
One of the most enjoyable and easy to digest fantasy blockbusters in a number of years, Dungeons and Dragons: Honour Among Thieves is a fabulously fun adventure that embraces what it is and takes it audience on a rip-roaring feature length ride.
4 out of shape dragons out of 5
Watched the trailer to this one and it looked good enough, but I was leery of it because I know how games transition to movies most of the time, and vice versa. But this sounds fun! Thanks for the review, I’ll be adding it to my watchlist.
Such a fun ride mate! Knows what it is and embraces it. The big surprise was just how funny it was, shares very similar laugh ratios to the duos previous film Game Night.