Well, The Self-Made Critic returns this weekend from yet another adventure into this summer's blockbusters. The culprit today - Dragonheart.
Since I've never seen the series before, I had no idea what to exp....wait a second. Wrong review.
Hold on, it's here somewhere.
(Tosses a few rusty cans and bottles out of the way, cackles with glee, discovers the ancient manuscript which contains the review. Cackles with glee again.)
Now that we're in the mood. Let me tell you, there are no cackling wizards searching cluttered tall towers in this movie. There are no shafts of light coming out of the end of a pointed stick in this movie. There are no princesses to be saved in this movie.
There is one incredible Dragon.
Yup, the boys in the lab have rubbed their collective hard drives together and brought us Draco, the star of the movie. They did a nice job, and then the director hit upon the stroke of genius and asked Sean Connery (one cannot actively cast The Sean in a movie, one must request an audience, and then is subject to his whims) to be the voice of Draco. The Sean agreed, and the result is the most wonderfully bright and refreshing character that large since... since... well since the last huge creature worth a damn. (no, the elephant in Dumbo Drop does not count.)
When you come right down to it, Draco is this movie, much like the tornadoes were Twister. Except here, Draco does more than just blow hot air, he talks, he flies, he dives, he's real cool. And he's darned cuddly. As I was leaving the theater, I heard one child spouting off to it's mother, "I want a Draco doll! And I want a Draco pillow! And I want a Draco lunchbox! And I want a Draco Condom!" OK, I'm kidding about the condom.
Anyway, the rest of the movie is a lot of fun as well. Nothing brilliant, but certainly worthwhile if you like the fantasy genre, or if you think Dennis Quaid's a hunk, or if you just want to see the Dragon.
Dennis Quaid is admirable in his role. Even if he does spend the movie trying to talk deeper than James Earl Jones. There's an evil brat king who you just want to spank throughout the whole movie, there's the prerequisite chick who's a tough fighter and a real babe, there are the necessary peasants under the evil king's thumb. They look peasantly.
There is also a charmingly fun monk/poet played by Pete Pothslewaite (however you spell it), best known for his work in In the Name of the Father or more impressively as Kobyashi in The Usual Suspects.
The story is rather bare, but it doesn't matter, because it's grand enough to suit the movie's purpose. You don't need a Pulitzer Prize Winner to fill the gaps between "Evil King", "Helpless Peasants", "Distraught, Noble Knight", and "Cool-ass Dragon."
There, I bet you could write it now.
The cinematography is nice, lots of sweeping shots of ancient countryside. You know, Hollywood's lucky that most of the British Isles is still a barren wasteland filled with rolling hills and stone castles, otherwise this genre would have died out long ago. I for one would never believe a Medieval fantasy if there were a McDonalds in the forest. Even with the Arch Deluxe.
By the way, what the Hell is that Arch Deluxe thing anyway? A burger for adults? What, it's got grownup beef?
But I digress.
Dragonheart is fun, and since nothing like it will be around this summer (we get about one true Hollywood genre picture every two years or so) you should see it if you've a hankering for swords, castles, and Dragons.
Plus the always welcome voice of The Sean.
All of this adds up to 3 Babylons for Dragonheart.
The Sean will be appearing in the flesh in next week's Break-Into-Alcatraz movie, The Rock. Look for the review in next week's mail, as I have every intent to see it immediately. Also, if it's a slow week and my date cancels on me again, I'll probably see The Phantom. Hey, no movie about a Purple Superhero without super powers could be all bad.
This review was retroactively improved to 3 1/2 Babylons one week later during the review of The Phantom. Why? Because The Self-Made Critic decided that he liked the movie more than he had at first thought.
We have learned to just accept his words. You would be wise to do the same.
This review has been approved by The Sean.