Don’t Believe the Hype! – The World of Warcraft Movie

by: Matthew J.R. Kohler

Sometimes a trailer does not indicate the quality of a movie, but other times you just know when you’ve seen the trailer that the movie just isn’t going to be good.  Such is the case with the upcoming Warcraft.  “World of Warcraft” is one of the biggest games ever, and its developer, Blizzard, is one of the biggest names in gaming.  I’ve talked to several peers about the upcoming film adaptation. They told me the film would look sweet if it were done in the same style as the cinematic cut scenes from the game.  If you’ve never seen one, then pause for a moment and watch.  The cut scenes are amazing!  They’re also animated.  The trailer, of course, clearly shows live action footage.  Well, barely.  We actually see the classic mishmash of garish CGI and badly colored live-action footage.  This movie looks exceptionally bad, so I decided to make a complaint/remind you that this movie is happening.

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When The Hobbit films came out, people were furious that the movie was mainly CGI.  Why were they mad?  Not only were The Lord of the Rings films made with mostly practical effects, but also because the filmmakers meshed the practical and digital effects together seamlessly.  Despite the backlash, the filmmakers of Warcraft decided to go for The Hobbit look.  Why?  Don’t you want more people to go see your movie?  In the trailer, there are cuts from CG orcs to actual actors.It’s very jarring because of how different the live-action footage looks when compared to the CGI.  These type of shots are the worst shots because most of the CGI looks like a dang PS2 cut scene!  If you want the movie to be dominated by CGI, why don’t you just make an animated film instead?

Because nothing was real in The Hobbit, none of the action scenes were cool, or could ever be believable.  You also never get magical moments in those films.  Many of the actors spilled blood when filming The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and it shows.  The only thing that was spilled in The Hobbit was the tears of Ian McKellan, who was so sick and tired of standing in a studio, in front of a green screen, saying lines to people who weren’t there.

And don’t even get me started on the lighting!  Well, actually, I’ll discuss it, because it’s important.  When everything in a movie is dark (in both lighting and color), that is a sign that the filmmakers are trying to hide their substandard CGI.  Just look at how most movies with terrible animation look dark.  Sadly, the attempt to mask it usually fails.  Look back at Harry Potter 5.  I remember watching it in theatres and laughing out loud when they showed the giant.  That was nine years ago, and today the same strategy is being used.  No longer can they be out in the sunlight thanks to us making fun of the fight scenes of The Matrix Reloaded.  Now, everything is dark!

So, should you care?  No. The trailers don’t make me want to view this movie at all.  But, some good could come from this movie.  It could be such a colossal failure that we’ll stop getting video game adaptations once and for all.

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