So I just finished watching the Warcraft movie. Needless to say I had a lot of fun watching it as it was Warcraft and you can’t really go too far wrong with it. The Warcraft movie stays true to classic Warcraft rather than World Of Warcraft which I was glad to see… though there were a few knocks to World Of Warcraft, they were very minor.
The first thing to note about the movie is that it is very straightforward and simplistic, they kinda sped it up to keep people engaged which was a good thing. The second thing to note is that the movie is very graphic and pretty dark for a 12 rated film which is great considering the fact that it stayed true to the Warcraft novels which were dark to begin with.
The characters didn’t disappoint, Durotan was as you would expect him, you get to see him a lot in the movie and you get to see many different sides of his character which was nice. Lothar gets a bit more exposure in there too with more plot relevance than he had in the original games. He and Durotan pretty much steal the show, though Khadgar makes a few appearances as well and acts as Batman’s Robin toward’s Lothar.
Orgrim Doomhammer returns, he’s just as badass as he was in the books but we don’t see too much of him at this point, he does play a role but it’s not as major as Khadgar so he is kind of a temporary side kick. Instead, Garona plays as Durotan’s sidekick even though they barely had any relevance to one another in the lore which is interesting. This brings me to another point.
The lore in the movie is different, most of it however still ties in to classic Warcraft and there are Loopholes which tie it in to Warcraft Orcs and Humans, I’m not going to say too much due to spoilers but things change in the movie, I believe these changes were directed towards the general public rather than Warcraft lore nerds since they wanted to give the movie a somewhat satisfying conclusion and they wanted the viewers to become invested more. So they changed it up to give extra investment to certain characters.
I will say that for the most part however, these changes are actually for the better as they made things a bit more interesting. On the other hand it causes a few plot holes. We get to see a lot of fight scenes, most of them are large-scale battles (in classic Warcraft style) there are also a few duels AKA mak’gora which adds a bit more focus in the choreography department. For the most part though, a lot of the action is pretty chaotic and difficult to take in though it was always satisfying to see Orgrim casually bashing people with his hammer with no fucks given, like a boss.
Naturally Blackhand plays a part, he’s slightly different now, rather than being ruthless dictator like he was in the books, he is a little more rational this time around but he is still rather brutal. Interestingly enough, they chose to keep him clean of the fel magic for some reason, this seemed somewhat out of character but it was replicated by his new attitude. Blackhand is very much like Orgrim Doomhammer in the sense that he is conflicted about Gul’dan’s actions but sees no other way around it. You never get to see his daughter, Griselda though. It would have been interesting to see how that would have worked out with this new personality he’s got rockin’.
Gul’dan is pretty much the main villain of the story and he is very different this time around. Rather than being a silver tongued schemer, Gul’dan is very much like he was in World Of Warcraft: Warlords Of Draenor in the sense that he is a lot more forward and up-front rather than hovering around from behind the scenes observing his grand plan from the background like he did in the lore. You could say he has basically replaced Blackhand’s role completely which kinda simplifies a lot of things but it’s really not Gul’dan. Nevertheless he’s still a great villain and he has a lot of badass moments, you thought he was starting to show his badass side in Warlords Of Draenor? Ha you’ve seen nothing yet.
Medivh was a pretty great character this time around, I like the way that they dealt with his character though the whole fel thing was a bit unusual as it came out of nowhere (I’m not going to spoil precisely what i’m talking about). We do get to see him do some cool things though. In a way, I’d say Medivh kinda replaces… nah I’m not going to say it because it’s a spoiler but if you know the lore, you probably know what i’m referring to.
I will definitely say however that I like how Medivh was portrayed in the movie better than the actual book which surprised me. In this you get to see a lot more of his unexpected character quirks than you did in the movie. He is also very protective over the human lands this time and takes his role as guardian a lot more seriously than he does in the book where he seems somewhat annoyed at the constant pestering of the humans for help and would rather keep himself to himself.
One thing that did disappoint me though was the ambiance of Karazhan, I guess I was expecting something a bit more ominous… I don’t know but it seemed like just a normal tower. The Dwarves make a brief appearance but the lack of a Scottish actor felt kind of off. I mean come on guys, it’s only CGI, get a Scottish actor to do the role, we identify the Dwarves with that Scottish accent as it gives off that Nordic feel which feels close to its roots (since the Dwarves are based off of The Lost Vikings) but it’s only a minor issue.
I also would have liked certain things to remain true to the lore such as all the orcs being green due to the dark magic taint that occurred in Draenor before the first war ever happened. Instead, Gul’dan just shoves magic up their asses and turns them green immediately, a bit late for that aren’t we Gul’dan? It felt rather inconsistent and awkward that all the fel orcs were completely irrelevant to the plot and were just there to add a backdrop (including Grom Hellscreem, yes he is there). You would think that Blackhand would have been one of the first to volunteer to drink the fel blood but it seems that he is instead commanding a bunch of steroid infested orcs and still manages to upstage all of them in combat… but this is Blackhand so why am I surprised?
The choreography was simple but good, all the hits connected well and had a good punch to them which made the fight scenes appear more gruesome. There was a lot of effort put into the sound design in the movie and the ambiance, you get to hear a lot of screeching and it gives the orcs in particular a very intimidating feel. Put simply if you’ve only play Warcraft 3 or World Of Warcraft, you might be a bit surprised as to just how intimidating they are. They are menacing and it’s sometimes difficult for Orgrim and Durotan to stand out amongst all the screaming of the orcs but they surprisingly manage to.
Seeing some of the imagery as it was conceived in the books brought to life was actually very frighteningly accurate and I really think they managed to capture those points quite well in the film which helps the viewer feel a lot more invested in the story if they haven’t read the books.
Put simply, Legendary thought of everything with this movie… but they focused mainly on the important parts of the story and building its foundations on it rather than looking at the broader picture and trying to level it all out with the rest. I think this decision was for the best. As much as I’d have liked to have seen the shadow council, the ogres, Mannoroth and maybe Kil’jaeden. I’m pretty satisfied by what was offered and it was really worth watching for what I was shown.
There is also one thing with Medivh that I won’t spoil but we get to see something that we have never seen in any Warcraft game before… beyond concepts of course. All I’m going to say is, it’s a bit small but for understandable reasons. However it is still pretty awesome and I’m so glad to finally see it, worth watching for that alone if you ask me.
So all in all, the movie is a must watch for Warcraft fans. I believe others who aren’t too invested in the Warcraft universe will enjoy it too since the story simplifies itself and changes things up to explain things better and get people’s investment quickly. Even if you aren’t a fan of Warcraft, you’ll either be invested in this film or it’s just simply not your kind of thing.
Though I did mention my hiatus in a previous post, I took it down since I made this closely afterwards. I may try to do something in the summer but there’s no promises. I can only hope to be back in winter.