Dungeons & Dragons is a crazy fun ride

Justice Smith plays Simon, Chris Pine plays Edgin, Sophia Lillis plays Doric and Michelle Rodriguez plays Holga in Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves from Paramount Pictures.

Over the years many have played and enjoyed Dungeons & Dragons the game. It’s even featured prominently in pieces like Stranger Things. But when it’s come to film versions, the allure hasn’t always been that. The latest take, Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, is just that, a cinematic journey that’s a fun and crazy ride.

The film comes from writer/directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, the partners who crafted the script for Spider-Man: Homecoming and gave us the re-boot of Vacation and the comedy Game Night. They bring that same sense of humor to this adventure, creating an action/adventure that has a lot of heart.

We follow a group of thieves. It starts out with our heroes, the widower Edgin (Chris Pine) and his friend Holga (Michelle Rodriguez). They’re in prison thanks to a job gone wrong, but desperate to escape and return to Edgin’s daughter, Kira (Chloe Coleman). When they do just that, they find their old partner Forge (Hugh Grant) has given Kira a decent life as he’s seized power for himself, but Edgin and Holga don’t get much of a welcome.

It soon becomes clear they’re need to pull off a job to win Kira back. They turn to a sorcerer named Simon (Justice Smith) a shape-shifting warrior named Doric (Sophia Lillis) and a kindly and powerful stranger, Xenk (Rege-Jean Page) to get past Forge and his powerful red witch (Daisy Head). And the adventure begins.

The trailers for this film lay out the premise and give the audience a sense of style. The question was whether it could deliver. This film does. The cast is strong, the writing is crisp and the sense of style is fun. Better yet, while there are obvious nods to game players, the film is plenty accessible to those that have never rolled the dice on the game.

The last time Dungeons & Dragons was adapted into a feature film was 2000, with a cast that included Jeremy Irons. It wasn’t well received and has faded away from general popularity in the more than 20 years since. This latest film is a breath of fresh air, something different and a lot of fun. I suspect it will be a hit with audiences looking for a fun and original adventure during a month that’s been mostly about sequels and film franchises.

I enjoyed the film greatly. I loved Pine in the lead role but the comedic timing of the whole cast is great. The story was fun and engaging, and the more than two-hour run time flew by. This is also a great spectacle, something worth seeing on the big screen. Of all the big March theatrical releases, this is my favorite. It’s well worth making time to see.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Matthew Fox is a graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at Biola University, and a giant nerd. He spends his free time watching movies, TV, and obsessing about football. He is a member of the FSWA. You can find him @knighthawk7734 on Twitter and as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast.


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