Full disclosure, I just recently discovered that a “Gelatinous Cube” is an actual thing used in the Dungeons & Dragons game and not just some weird plot-device used in the new film, Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves. How many more items are like this, that will delight D&D players but were completely overlooked by me, I have no idea. Nevertheless, I still loved this movie.
I’ve always wanted to learn to play Dungeons & Dragons, but for whatever reason have never been in with the right people to give it a try. I’ve also never seen any of the other D&D movies or cartoons, so I went into this new film as a complete, Level 1 newbie. And while the film obviously has many nods to the long-time players, it is easily accessible to any moviegoer – and it is an enormously fun and entertaining film on top of that.
Part action-adventure flick and part other-world heist film, the story has a hero turned thief, Edgin (Chris Pine), and his woman-warrior pal, Holga (Michelle Rodriguez), recruiting a team of misfits to steal a magical totem that will bring his murdered wife back to life; but first they’ll have to dispatch with former teammates, Forge (Hugh Grant) and an evil witch, Sofina (Daisy Head), who have brain-washed Edgin’s child (Chloe Coleman) against him, while he was in prison.
Edgin’s new team of adventurers includes a second-rate magician, Simon (Justice Smith), and a shape-shifting druid, Doric (Sophia Lillis), who can change into an ultra-cool and bad-ass owl-bear thing, among other creatures. Written and directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, these characters all play brilliantly off of one another.
I’m not a fan of Michelle Rodriguez and I typically find her iconic Fast and Furious role cringe-inducing, but I liked her eccentric character in this film. Even though she’s the toughest member of the group, she still portrays a sweet side that is endearing. And she and Pine make a good pairing together.
Hugh Grant is another stand-out, portraying yet another likeable, but despicable villain, something he’s becoming very good at (see Operation Fortune). The only light-weight, casting-wise, is Edgin’s daughter, who made me think of a whiny young Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace.
With its fantastic special effects and unique creatures and characters, the fun and adventure value of Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves takes you to the next level of entertainment.