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#1 Jun 10 2016 at 9:30 PM Rating: Good
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I can honestly say I enjoyed it. It's the first movie I've seen in theaters in like six years.

I went in with kind of low expectations due to all the negative reviews from film critics. Their main point though was basically "it won't appeal to people who are unfamiliar with the franchise" aka film critics. I have actually spent a great deal of time playing Warcraft games ranging from the original Warcraft: Orcs and Humans from 1994 to today's Warlord's of Draenor so I guess I can't really imagine what it's like to "not be familiar" especially given the countless hours I've spent reading lore on the wiki and doing every quest in WoW imaginable.

That being said, my only real complaint was the historical inaccuracy so to speak... Almost everything that happens in the movie is pretty solid in that sense, save for a few really glaring issues. For instance-- Garona is supposed to have assassinated King Lane in Stormwind... all malicious like. What happened in the movie was not that. Stormwind itself was supposed to be sacked and razed to the ground to be rebuilt later-- sending the survivors to seek refuge in Lordaeron. That also did not happen. Blackhand was supposed to be killed and decapitated by Doomhammer, but instead was killed in a duel by Loathar.

I was really happy with all the little details they added to appease fans of the games-- like the fishing rod bobber that is identical to the ones in WoW and the murloc in the beginning in Elwynn Forest.
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#2 Jun 11 2016 at 5:47 AM Rating: Good
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I found the progression of some events to be too fast. The human's acceptance, and Lothar's love, of Garona seemed to happen very quickly with very little interaction. An army of essentially brain washed orcs turning away from their spritual leader simply because one human defeated their great warrior in a 5 second battle.

The movie seemed filled with some relatively lower tier actors. People that I recognized their faces, but couldn't tell you their name or likely what I had seen them. The queen was Raina from Agents of SHIELD? One of the Knights played a future mercenary / main-character-love-interest from Continuum I think. I recognized the King's face but couldn't place him or name him. (Edit: Ok, so King was Howard Stark, SHIELD). There were a handful of others.

The amount of blood and detail in fights seemed to vary a lot throughout the movie. At times you'd think they were playing it up all PG, with hits being landed that produced no visible wound or blood. And then other times you'd end up with a pretty gruesome visual (by comparison) of a blow being landed. And maybe it's just me, but I felt some of the CG began to suffer as the movie progressed. Maybe I just started noticing things more during the last part of the movie, but some things just started standing out more.

I had played the earlier RTS games, and a very tiny bit of WoW in it's very early years (just on my brother's account). But I recognized all the locales and caught a handful of the visual things added for the fans.

One woman in the audience enjoyed the Sheep transmutation spell a little too much. She applauded very loudly and was laughing.

Overall the movie left a positive impression. I wouldn't say I regret seeing it in theaters, but I can't say I would recommend actually seeing it for anyone really on the fence about it. If you are hesitant for your own reasons, I would recommend waiting to see it on TV later. While decent, the overall story was pretty generic and unfortunately the choice in actors makes it feel like it's made for TV rather than the big screen. Of course that last complaint is a biased opinion, but the feel is there.

I was deciding on this or Conjuring 2. I think I would have rather seen Conjuring 2. But I will be stuck in this Hotel all weekend, so I may still go see Conjuring 2 on Sunday morning.

Edited, Jun 11th 2016 7:51am by TirithRR
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#3 Jun 11 2016 at 8:43 AM Rating: Excellent
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My son saw Conjuring 2 yesterday and said he and his friend laughed through the first half of it because it was dumb. Of course, they're teenagers so they probably laugh at crippled hobos and stuff, too.

My only Warcraft experience is a few months in WoW around a decade ago so I'm probably not the target demo but the trailers looked like a by-the-book plot. Soldier-Man and Orc-Girl making moon eyes at each other got old even during the 2:30 trailer. I'll definitely wait until this is on FX six times a day.
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#4 Jun 16 2016 at 10:35 PM Rating: Good
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I enjoyed it, even if they did the typical book/game route into a movie where things change in order to pack it all in a 2 hour time slot.

The murloc and sheep scenes got a good rise out of the fans in the audience.

A sequel would be great of course, but I have no idea how the box office numbers are. There was not a lot of people in the theater and that was on the opening day of the 10th.
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#5 Jun 16 2016 at 11:30 PM Rating: Good
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According to wikipedia, $310.4 million grossed of the needed $450 million break even. Usually merchandising is a fairly significant portion of these types of films' revenue.

I felt the film is underrated by critics. It's standing around a 26% on RT now, and I feel it could justify a 40% or 50%. It's worse than say, lotr, but not that much worse, and still manages to be more original than the slew of copypaste super hero films scoring in the high 80s.

Context certainly helps with the enjoyment, as you become less focused on figuring out which one dimensional archetype a character is and instead distracted by exactly how that archetype will be executed.
#6 Jun 17 2016 at 10:39 AM Rating: Decent
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I've never been a fan of WoW (and never played any of the other Warcraft games), and nothing in the trailers for this movie made me change that opinion. I might check it out on late night cable some day, but only if I'm really bored.
#7 Jun 20 2016 at 6:28 PM Rating: Decent
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Not sure I'm surprised at all by it under performing. Films based on games have historically been problematic, since those who are not fans of the game are usually not going to bother seeing it in the theater because they assume (usually correctly) that it's aimed at fans of the game, and they're not going to get a lot out of it (or they just don't enjoy the genre anyway). Those who are fans of the game are usually going to be harsh critics, and the slightest thing that isn't right in their minds will be viewed as a negative. And frankly, fans of games who've seen horribly awful films made of the games they love have become jaded. Even if I was an active Warcraft player, my reaction to hearing about a Warcraft film would be "Eh. It'll probably suck. I'll wait for it to come out on cable/netflix/whatever". The track record on this just isn't that great IMO.
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#8 Jun 21 2016 at 8:10 AM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
The track record on this just isn't that great IMO.
Historically comic movies were pretty disastrous as well until someone figured out a formula to make it work. I mean, you're not wrong in that movies based on games are failures, but eventually someone is going to get it right and everyone wants to be the ones on the ground floor when it happens. Besides, there's also the possibility of becoming a cult hit like Mario Brothers.

Anyway, China apparently absolutely adores Warcraft and it's making money hand over fist there, which I guess is [insert joke about gold selling here].
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#9 Jun 21 2016 at 11:07 AM Rating: Good
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eventually someone is going to get it right
I am looking forward to the Assassin's Creed movie coming out this year. I like the previews I have seen so far. And, from what I have read about it, it looks like they aren't trying to take a game story and cram it into 2 hours. Instead, they wrote a completely new story specifically for a movie that uses the idea and world that was set up. If it is done the way that it reads, it should be a good adaptation.

Whether that means it will make money is a different question. They will still need to get over the stigma of movies based on games is bad. I also hope that the studio doesn't get really stupid and make an "Assassin's Creed: The Movie: The Game" (like Street Fighter did).

Edited, Jun 21st 2016 1:09pm by AnimalOnSylph
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#10 Jun 21 2016 at 11:33 AM Rating: Good
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lolgaxe wrote:
Besides, there's also the possibility of becoming a cult hit like Mario Brothers.

Honestly, I think Mario Bros is the standard that all game movies should aspire to. It's bad, but it's also so incredibly absurd that it doesn't matter. The movie knows how absurd it is and runs with it.


Like gbaji said, there's an inherent problem with video game movies where only fans of the game really care, and they care too much to enjoy the movie without nitpicking it to death (movies based on books and TV shows also have this issue, though not nearly to the same extent for some reason.) The hard part isn't making a decent movie. It's making people interested enough to go see it in the first place. I mean, who exactly is the target audience for the upcoming Assassin's Creed movie? People who like the games don't want to see it, and people who have never played the games aren't interested to begin with.
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#11 Jun 21 2016 at 4:59 PM Rating: Decent
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lolgaxe wrote:
gbaji wrote:
The track record on this just isn't that great IMO.
Historically comic movies were pretty disastrous as well until someone figured out a formula to make it work. I mean, you're not wrong in that movies based on games are failures, but eventually someone is going to get it right and everyone wants to be the ones on the ground floor when it happens.


Oh, absolutely. I'm sure maybe someday someone might figure out a way to do this and make bank. The problem is that films based on other sources (like books, TV shows, and yes, even comic) are already in a story format. The content may sometimes take some effort (and good timing) to attain broad appeal, but they're at least starting with something that is a story in the classical sense. I suspect that part of the reason films based on games are more difficult is that games are not really story driven. They're innately interactive. They are about environments in which the players interact. Fans of games are fans because they play the game. Fans of a book read the book. Fans of a TV series watched the series. Fans of a comic series read that series. It's hard to verbalize why that makes a difference, but it does seem to.

I'll also point out that films based on comic book characters actually have a pretty good success rate. But they had to be broadly known comic characters. Superman was a huge hit back in 1978. Batman has been pretty successful too (even the first set). It was Marvel that had difficulty for a long time making feature films, but that was largely a combination of their characters being less well known to the broad audience (except for Spider Man, which well, was a big hit the first time out as well). Marvel also had issues because it had sold the film rights for what few well known characters they did have (Spiderman mostly, but I suppose you could put X-men and Fantastic Four in there as well, each of which had pretty darn successful runs as feature films, well X-men anyway). Marvel puttered around with attempts to do the Punisher (with varying degrees of success at best). Ironically, it was Blade that was their first big hit (as Marvel Studios anyway), and with what could quite arguably be said to be a fringe character at best in the Marvel Universe.

Eh. In any case, I'd argue that the successes have far outweighed the flops when it comes to comic book based feature films. Where I think your analogy does work is being able to take less well known characters and make good films with them. And that is something that Marvel seems to have figured out. If You'd asked me whether a film based on Deadpool or Guardians of the Galaxy had a chance of being much more than direct to video releases 10 years ago, I'd have laughed out loud at you. So yeah, it's possible to figure this out for game based characters and stories, but they need to find a way over that hurdle. Maybe start with a good story first? We seem to basically get a rehash of the plot to "Dungeons and Dragons: the movie" each and every time.

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Besides, there's also the possibility of becoming a cult hit like Mario Brothers.


Hah! Yup. That was a classic. So bad it was actually good. Not quite "Mom and Dad save the Earth" good, but close.
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#12 Jun 21 2016 at 5:24 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
I suspect that part of the reason films based on games are more difficult is that games are not really story driven. They're innately interactive. They are about environments in which the players interact. Fans of games are fans because they play the game. Fans of a book read the book. Fans of a TV series watched the series. Fans of a comic series read that series. It's hard to verbalize why that makes a difference, but it does seem to.

Didn't you stop buying games a decade ago because they became too narrative driven and you didn't like it?
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#13 Jun 21 2016 at 8:40 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
gbaji wrote:
I suspect that part of the reason films based on games are more difficult is that games are not really story driven. They're innately interactive. They are about environments in which the players interact. Fans of games are fans because they play the game. Fans of a book read the book. Fans of a TV series watched the series. Fans of a comic series read that series. It's hard to verbalize why that makes a difference, but it does seem to.

Didn't you stop buying games a decade ago because they became too narrative driven and you didn't like it?


Mostly I stopped buying games because I don't have the kind of time to play them that I used to. But you are correct that I've never been a huge fan of games with story "rails", so to speak (always more preferred more strategy/tactical games or open world games). I'm not sure Warcraft falls remotely into that category though. In fact, I'm quite sure it doesn't. But if someone were making a film based on one of those types of games, they'd run afoul of not having nearly enough time in a single film to include the entire story, which would certainly result in fan rage.

Eh. And even games with tight stories still tend to have multiple character choices along the way. Again, that's tough to implement as a film. You either stick to a single instance of the story (specific character choices) and get stuck with a smallish fan support (cause honestly, my other beef with those games was the almost universally moronic nature of the plots within, which means only people who are *really* fans will want to see the film, and half of them will be ****** at the character choices the film goes with). Or they deviate completely and get fan rage from that too.

Ironically, I actually think your best odds would be a film set in a more open game setting (like any of the MMORGPs out there). So Warcraft had as good or better a shot as any. But, as I mentioned above, you actually have to write a good story. It honestly seems like the folks who write the scripts for films set in game universes kinda phone it in or something. It's like they think that the fact that it's set in <insert popular game world here> will make audiences forget that the plot they wrote is moronically simplistic and trope-laden. I have no clue what the plot for Warcraft is, but I'd guess it's got the usual mix of world threatening danger, band of unlikely heroes rising together to fight it despite differences in background, race, class, national identity, etc that might otherwise make them adversaries, a mix of poorly defined magic/tech/whatever to drive the plot forward as needed, random luck that gets them through, and probably every other stereotyped story element that we can think of.


Funny thing is that you can include all that stuff and still have a great film. You just have to get the right balance. I also firmly believe (cause I've seen it too often) that many writers mistakenly assume that if the world you're writing for requires suspension of disbelief for some form of magic/tech, that this means the audience will suspend disbelief in basic plot elements as well. I'm not sure what it is about a sci-fi/fantasy setting that makes writers do this, but they do. And the result is gaping plot holes that the writer thinks aren't a big deal because "magic/tech", but the viewers will hate because "magic/tech doesn't work like that". Dunno. Just a general trend I've seen.
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#14 Dec 07 2016 at 12:33 AM Rating: Good
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According to wikipedia, $310.4 million grossed of the needed $450 million break even. Usually merchandising is a fairly significant portion of these types of films' revenue.

I felt the film is underrated by critics. It's standing around a 26% on RT now, and I feel it could justify a 40% or 50%. It's worse than say, lotr, but not that much worse, and still manages to be more original than the slew of copypaste super hero films scoring in the high 80s.

Context certainly helps with the enjoyment, as you become less focused on figuring out which one dimensional archetype a character is and instead distracted by exactly how that archetype will be executed.


Where did you get the $450M breakeven? I'm finding $160M as budget.
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#16 Dec 08 2016 at 5:59 PM Rating: Good
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It's literally in the sentence after the one mentioning $160 million in Wikipedia. Ticket sales != studio revenue.
#17 Dec 08 2016 at 6:13 PM Rating: Decent
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Allegory wrote:
It's literally in the sentence after the one mentioning $160 million in Wikipedia. Ticket sales != studio revenue.


I think the bigger question is where the $450M figure comes from. Yes, the article mentions the source, but how did that source determine that figure? Assuming the $160M figure was the actual production cost for the film (it calls it the "budget", which is kind of an odd term to use since budgets are usually projections. Why not just tell us how much it cost to make and promote the film?), where does the additional $290M come from? I mean, I get that production companies want to make a profit, but three times the cost of the film seems a bit off, and would not remotely be the "break even" point (not for normal definitions of the phrase anyway).

So yeah, Not getting that at all based on the data we have.
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#18 Dec 08 2016 at 6:40 PM Rating: Good
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290M in licensing fees to Blizzard?

And while it's odd to see "budgets" rather than actual cost, I'm pretty sure "budget" is the terminology/figure used when these things are talked about for movies. I don't recall hearing much about "production cost" instead hearing a lot about film budgets vs box office.
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#19 Dec 08 2016 at 6:40 PM Rating: Good
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I mean, I really don't know and don't care enough to to dig into the nitty gritty, but as I said, I assume the theater take is the biggest portion.

http://www.rogerebert.com/letters/how-your-ticket-price-is-divided
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gbaji wrote:
(it calls it the "budget", which is kind of an odd term to use since budgets are usually projections. Why not just tell us how much it cost to make and promote the film?)

Because Variety or other publications don't have that price down to the exact number and studios don't provide it. They have a round approximation.

2.5-3x the production budget is generally the break-even point for a major studio picture. As an example, this Hollywood Reporter story:
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But box-office analysts and rival studios are skeptical that Sony has indeed relaunched the storied franchise, considering $46 million is a problematic start for a movie with a net production budget of $144 million (rebates and tax incentives brought it down from $154 million).
[...]
When factoring in marketing costs — the price tag for promoting a summer tentpole globally can be upward of $150 million — Ghostbusters may have to earn $375 million to $400 million worldwide to break even for Sony and partner Village Roadshow Pictures.


Edited, Dec 12th 2016 9:32am by Jophiel
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#21 Dec 12 2016 at 11:53 PM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
gbaji wrote:
(it calls it the "budget", which is kind of an odd term to use since budgets are usually projections. Why not just tell us how much it cost to make and promote the film?)

Because Variety or other publications don't have that price down to the exact number and studios don't provide it. They have a round approximation.

2.5-3x the production budget is generally the break-even point for a major studio picture. As an example, this Hollywood Reporter story:
Quote:
But box-office analysts and rival studios are skeptical that Sony has indeed relaunched the storied franchise, considering $46 million is a problematic start for a movie with a net production budget of $144 million (rebates and tax incentives brought it down from $154 million).
[...]
When factoring in marketing costs — the price tag for promoting a summer tentpole globally can be upward of $150 million — Ghostbusters may have to earn $375 million to $400 million worldwide to break even for Sony and partner Village Roadshow Pictures.


Edited, Dec 12th 2016 9:32am by Jophiel


So the question remains, is 450M good enough for a 160M production, with the various intangibles Blizz gets in addition? I mean, it's no Captain America, but it's not Ghostbusters, either. (#14 on the 2016 list.) A meh, it didn't bankrupt us but probably not going to spawn a sequel?
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