Fantasy Films

PeteByrdie

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A friend of mine... ...claims that Hot Fuzz is the worst film ever made.

You're making bad life choices. Such people deserve no friends.

I‘ve always thought that people who thought that way lacked imagination...

I think there are different kinds of imagination. Even so, it takes more imagination to be creative than to enjoy the creations of others. If it's not their bag, that's fine. Except the Hot Fuzz thing. That's not fine.
 

Stormkhan

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Thing is, any fantasy or science fiction has to set the world in which the viewer is being asked to immerse in.
The Harry Potter franchise relied on popular novels, already sold, but was close to source material. The 'world' was fairly unique and it was - from the start - a narrative of the world as well as an episodic story of Harry's involvement in said fantasy world.
In short, the film was based on a single source which gave general guidelines on what viewers should expect.

The Tolkien outings, too, relied on original and detailed source materials with the fans just wanting to see their vision realised.
Even Dune, as science fiction 'behaves' as fantasy in that their world is nothing like our own. That is classic fantasy. Science fiction is fantasy too!

So why does sci-fi succeed where fantasy doesn't? It doesn't.
Science fiction succeeds because the audience feels an extension to the world they are asked to inhabit. A bloke with an implant that he can connect with a public terminal to access the 'net? Not far away. Robots? Yeah; great as an ethical question but we're okay with them. People watch science fiction for 'new' ideas. How far will things go? How will we cope? What will our leaders do with all this new tech? It's all stuff! This is, perhaps, why movie-goers like CGI but start to jeer when too much is used. Too much show, not tell?
Bottom line is, we (the viewer) look at the future as presented and can understand how the world may've got there.
In fantasy (as in wizards, D&D etc.) we are presented with an alternate world where things can be done that, in our world, they don't.

But, an essential issue is the difference between a novel and a film. A novel isn't limited to running time or visual events (involving CGI) in order to draw in the reader. A film has different demands. It can't (or shouldn't) take time over world-building; the modern audience can't be bothered - it wants the CGI action and then some! Pacing in a film is far more important in visual media than in a book.

But the biggest - and I mean THE BIGGEST - problem a Dungeons & Dragons film has to contend with ... is the concept itself.

D&D was popular because it took sword 'n' sorcery written/film material and gave the viewer/audience agency!
You could play a game where, if you thought the hero in a popular story acted like an idiot, you could act out your own plan.

So ...

The modern D&D film-maker is using canon filler ( for example beholders - 'cause they've been popular) to re-invent a much-loved setting (such as Greyhawk) to let the audience watch someone else's adventures ... and then go away and say "I know the setting, I know the spells they had, I could've done this ..."

Hmmmm.
 

PeteByrdie

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Thing is, any fantasy or science fiction has to set the world in which the viewer is being asked to immerse in.
The Harry Potter franchise relied on popular novels, already sold, but was close to source material. The 'world' was fairly unique and it was - from the start - a narrative of the world as well as an episodic story of Harry's involvement in said fantasy world.
In short, the film was based on a single source which gave general guidelines on what viewers should expect.

The Tolkien outings, too, relied on original and detailed source materials with the fans just wanting to see their vision realised.
Even Dune, as science fiction 'behaves' as fantasy in that their world is nothing like our own. That is classic fantasy. Science fiction is fantasy too!

So why does sci-fi succeed where fantasy doesn't? It doesn't.
Science fiction succeeds because the audience feels an extension to the world they are asked to inhabit. A bloke with an implant that he can connect with a public terminal to access the 'net? Not far away. Robots? Yeah; great as an ethical question but we're okay with them. People watch science fiction for 'new' ideas. How far will things go? How will we cope? What will our leaders do with all this new tech? It's all stuff! This is, perhaps, why movie-goers like CGI but start to jeer when too much is used. Too much show, not tell?
Bottom line is, we (the viewer) look at the future as presented and can understand how the world may've got there.
In fantasy (as in wizards, D&D etc.) we are presented with an alternate world where things can be done that, in our world, they don't.

But, an essential issue is the difference between a novel and a film. A novel isn't limited to running time or visual events (involving CGI) in order to draw in the reader. A film has different demands. It can't (or shouldn't) take time over world-building; the modern audience can't be bothered - it wants the CGI action and then some! Pacing in a film is far more important in visual media than in a book.

But the biggest - and I mean THE BIGGEST - problem a Dungeons & Dragons film has to contend with ... is the concept itself.

D&D was popular because it took sword 'n' sorcery written/film material and gave the viewer/audience agency!
You could play a game where, if you thought the hero in a popular story acted like an idiot, you could act out your own plan.

So ...

The modern D&D film-maker is using canon filler ( for example beholders - 'cause they've been popular) to re-invent a much-loved setting (such as Greyhawk) to let the audience watch someone else's adventures ... and then go away and say "I know the setting, I know the spells they had, I could've done this ..."

Hmmmm.
So, making a D&D movie is a subversion of a franchise whose strength is that it replicates fantasy fiction while placing the audience in the story?
 

catseye

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A friend of mine flat out refuses to watch Sci-Fi, superhero, Fantasy, Horror or anything animated. It’s either “rubbish” or “a load of bollocks”. This is his reaction to both TV and Film, unless it is Sport related or rooted in the real world. He claims that Hot Fuzz is the worst film ever made.

But it does say a lot when his favourite two movies are Pretty Woman and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.

My mother-in-law, before she got dementia, was adamant that anything set in space was for, in her words “babies”! She also couldn’t see the point in reading fiction.

I‘ve always thought that people who thought that way lacked imagination, but my mother-in-law was a fantastic seamstress and cake maker (she designed and made my wife’s wedding dress and our wedding cake that was shaped like The Bellagio where we got married), and my mate is a cabinet maker by trade, so I’m not too sure about that theory now. Or can you lack imagination and still be creative?
My ex struggled with anything sci fi or that wasn't rooted in the real world. He couldn't read fiction either. It was 'all made up' and therefore not worth bothering with.
And 'Hot Fuzz'? One of the best films ever and I will fight anyone who contradicts me. In jelly, naked.
 

Stormkhan

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I'm only a viewer and commenting.
I can only comment on what has happened in the past.
However, me personally? I'd watch it but not hold out too much expectation for it to earn megabucks for the producers, studio and down.
The 'franchise' of RPG's (D&D being the first) was established and made exemptional because it placed the player in the story, not the audience. This was the appeal of D&D.
It doesn't replicate fantasy fiction because it became part of it.
Making a D&D movie may not be a 'subversion' but it must be acknowledged that it draws on that established franchise. And, I must add, this was before the word 'franchise' was in common usage.

D&D was all about the players and them playing.
You want to attract old players to watch someone else - younger, not interesting - to do stuff and name-check old writings? Yeah, that's okay.
But what is the filmmaker doing to attract others? Do they want to encourage a new generation of RPG players (in the face of computer-gaming) or to establish another game franchise?

What is the intention of the producers? To name-check and get viewers of *ahem* a certain age to pay bucks? That's realistic. To launch a (dormant) franchise? Good luck with that one.
 

GNC

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How soon we forget the original D&D movie, with Tom Baker as a one-scene wonder elf. Probably just as well.
 

Stormkhan

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Oh, I dunno. What with Bruce Payne's blue lipstick and an elven ranger with boob-shaped plate armour, it was Jeremy Iron's scenery-chewing that took the prize!
 

PeteByrdie

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Oh, I dunno. What with Bruce Payne's blue lipstick and an elven ranger with boob-shaped plate armour, it was Jeremy Iron's scenery-chewing that took the prize!
Gosh, I've never seen Mr Iron so over the top. I suppose he thought it was what the role required. Or, I can only imagine the direction he was given.
 

Ogdred Weary

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I'm only a viewer and commenting.
I can only comment on what has happened in the past.
However, me personally? I'd watch it but not hold out too much expectation for it to earn megabucks for the producers, studio and down.
The 'franchise' of RPG's (D&D being the first) was established and made exemptional because it placed the player in the story, not the audience. This was the appeal of D&D.
It doesn't replicate fantasy fiction because it became part of it.
Making a D&D movie may not be a 'subversion' but it must be acknowledged that it draws on that established franchise. And, I must add, this was before the word 'franchise' was in common usage.

D&D was all about the players and them playing.
You want to attract old players to watch someone else - younger, not interesting - to do stuff and name-check old writings? Yeah, that's okay.
But what is the filmmaker doing to attract others? Do they want to encourage a new generation of RPG players (in the face of computer-gaming) or to establish another game franchise?

What is the intention of the producers? To name-check and get viewers of *ahem* a certain age to pay bucks? That's realistic. To launch a (dormant) franchise? Good luck with that one.

I suspect it will be a Generic Fantasy Story with some of the more prominent elements from the D&D universe. I'm only vaguely familiar with D&D (the game, was a big fan of the cartoon) but if it is anything like Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay which I was heavily into, then it will be impossible to do with any justice. You can just include some species/locations/tropes/powers and little else, as there's so much material to draw on and no one central character or plot. Or even characters and plots.
 

Souleater

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I suspect it will be a Generic Fantasy Story with some of the more prominent elements from the D&D universe. I'm only vaguely familiar with D&D (the game, was a big fan of the cartoon) but if it is anything like Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay which I was heavily into, then it will be impossible to do with any justice. You can just include some species/locations/tropes/powers and little else, as there's so much material to draw on and no one central character or plot. Or even characters and plots.
If they base the film on the first 3 'Dragon Lance' D&D novels, it will be amazing, however i doubt it will be.

One set of books that should be made into a film are the 'Magician' series by Raymond E. Feist. Some of the best fantasy novels ive ever read.

The 'Belgariad' and 'Mallorian' series by David Eddings also worthy of a film.
 

Naughty_Felid

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The 'Belgariad' and 'Mallorian' series by David Eddings also worthy of a film.
My favorite books when I was 13 years old. You have no idea how important they were. Pre-Potter, I get how Harry Potter is so important to kids even though I've never read them.

I didn't need to I'd read Eddings. When they finished I was completely devastated, When I reread them at 21, (the wounds of their departure had healed), I realized they were books written for 13-year-olds.


I was sad to hear of his passing but they are very good juvenile fantasy but nothing else.
 

GNC

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We don't have a fantasy TV thread, so I'll park this here:

What do you mean you don't want a gritty reboot of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe? Well, you're getting one! Kevin Smith is behind it, but I don't think it's a comedy.
 

Kondoru

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Just watched Raya and the Last Dragon.

An excuse for Disney to go ethnic...oh, and animate hair and water...

...and rip off The Last Airbender....

(Otherwise known as `Two little girls fight and destroy the world`)

(Which come to think of it is a believable story premise).
 

maximus otter

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We don't have a fantasy TV thread, so I'll park this here:

What do you mean you don't want a gritty reboot of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe? Well, you're getting one! Kevin Smith is behind it, but I don't think it's a comedy.

FF to 2:14 for a gritty Scots update on MOTU (NSFW re bad Scots language throughout, if you understand it…):


maximus otter
 

GNC

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Janey Godley has a lot to answer for...
 

Stormkhan

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Just watched Raya and the Last Dragon.

An excuse for Disney to go ethnic...oh, and animate hair and water...
Another kiss-ass film to earn from the Chinese market like the Mulan remake?
 

GNC

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Another kiss-ass film to earn from the Chinese market like the Mulan remake?

Supposedly a bid for the South East Asian market - Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, etc. But that didn't stop them voicing it with Chinese American actors, you know, just to hedge their bets. It did backfire on them in the target territory, though.

Basically nobody can enjoy any entertainment anymore.
 

Analogue Boy

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So, making a D&D movie is a subversion of a franchise whose strength is that it replicates fantasy fiction while placing the audience in the story?
The ultimate D&D movie would probably involve 4 characters to be viewed interactively by 4 people at home. This would mean shooting hundreds of scenes based on the alternative choices of the audience.
It would be cool though.
 

PeteByrdie

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The ultimate D&D movie would probably involve 4 characters to be viewed interactively by 4 people at home. This would mean shooting hundreds of scenes based on the alternative choices of the audience.
It would be cool though.
Perhaps, but there are fantasy RPG online computer games that allow freedom of movement for numerous players at a time. I think the strengths of the movie medium are elsewhere. Rather than another straight (or even comedic) fantasy movie, I'd rather see a movie about DnD players with their game concurrently rendered with all of Hollywood's resources, and the players' relationships and the game feeding into one another. It's been done well in The Gamers: Rise of Dorkness, and is still being done quite well in Deerstalker Pictures 1 For All youtube series, and to some extent the LARPs webseries. But it's never been done on a Hollywood budget. It is a better representation of DnD and would better publicise the game, it provides a real world emotional hook for the audience, and it has potential for comedy, drama and action. But, I doubt a studio would be courageous enough to throw money at such a thing, even in an age when people are sitting watching TV shows and YouTube videos of other people playing DnD (without special effects).
 
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