Warcraft: When Battle Between Man and Orcs Delivers a Lesser Blow

Erwin M. Mascarinas

EVER since Hollywood has tried bringing the computer and console gaming world into the big screen starting with the Super Mario Bros in 1993, the big budget movie based on the game failed to deliver beyond its expected box office revenue, and with some very disappointing results.

When the first trailer of the movie Warcraft based on one of the best selling games of all time was released on the Internet, it gave hope that after so many failures in the past, this one would be its redemption, a game adaptation hoped to be good enough to cut the chain of failed expectations.

For someone who hasn’t played that much of both the original Warcraft and the World of Warcraft games and watched the game cinematic cuts, the movie made it quick for non-gaming moviegoers to ride into the concept of the worlds of human and orcs without really trying hard to explain each of the scene but just allowing the audience to ride along with the thought.

The biggest positive side for me about the movie was how they handled bringing out the Orcs into the big screen without looking like an angry Shrek rampaging the humans.

One of the biggest concerns for me, is going into the movie and seeing the Orcs look like more of a computer generated imagery that lacks realism. But surprisingly they did a pretty well job in creating believable Orcs characters that successfully connected with the audience. Motion capture combined with great costume design and almost seamless integration of both was something.

Seeing the battles between humans and the strong and powerful Orcs away from what was just offered in the computer games, is for me a spectacle I waited since the project was officially announced back in 2006.

The movie did its job in entertaining its audience but it felt like it had so much potential that was wasted on several aspects that should have been immersed on character development such as Sir Anduin Lothar played by Travis Fimmel the main protagonist and the other human characters.

Toby Kebbell who played Durotan, the lead protagonist for the Orcs Horde, showcased a compelling connection between its audience and the characters dilemma being a father and husband, Orc chieftain of the Forstwolf Clan and his duty to the Horde.

But disappointing enough was an all powerful wizard who was also the one behind the entire chaos that endangered the human world and then made another 360 degree turn again before he died was just too pushy for me to equate and could have made the character of Wizard Medivh played by Ben Foster better suited for a more convincing magical role. The young mage Khadgar played by Ben Schnetzer, took me way farther off as he wasn’t even emotionally convincing enough to even regard him serious for the role.

The storyline in general, especially along the third and fourth act of the entire film tried so hard to evolve and made excuses along the timeline to justify where the plot was heading. It should have been effortlessly unfortunate, jumping between the excuse of the wizard and the conflict within the Horde and the defiance of the human was a bit too “trying hard” losing so much potential on a bigger scale of the entire plot.

For me the entire movie feels a little too thin but yet again from an entertainment point of view on value, yes the movie delivered its blow and hopefully would be far better with its sequel.

Overall, I give the movie 3 out of 5.