Director: Leigh Scott
Stars: Amelia Jackson-Gray, Matthew Wolf Jon-Paul Gates
Another film from The Asylum. If the poster art and obvious font didn’t make it clear enough this is a mockbuster of the 2006 film Eragon which is based upon the novel of the same name. Dragon, however, has nothing in common with either the film or the novel Eragon other than being a fantasy story that has a dragon in it. I’ve actually never read “Eragon” or seen the film but I have heard stuff about it, mostly that the book is okay and the movie is terrible. This mockbuster, however, is downright shitty and watching it was one of the most unendurable tasks I’ve had to do in my life.
Try to follow. The film takes place in the forest of Sidhe and follows Princess Alora on her journey to Bagnor Brim to seek the aid of Lord Blackthorne against the dark elves in war. She is saved by two warriors named Lord Artemir and Cador Bain who join her to act as guardians and warn her of the dragon in the forest. They are ambushed by a trio of bandits who indentify themselves as Kennsington Vassals and claim they are famous for having slain the dragon before. They to agree to join this wandering party. They then encounter an elf named Dana who is mistress to a great necromancer named Freyja who join Princess Alora’s party as well.
You get all that? My gripe isn’t this lazy story about a Princess picking up people like she’s a goddamn Katamari. The problem here is that the movie is steeped in too much Fantasybabble. Just like bad Sci-Fi has too much Technobabble, bad Fantasy has too much Fantasybabble. None of these characters has a normal name. You won’t find a John, or a Smith among the bunch. No, this script was written by someone who just started mainlining Dungeons and Dragons so everyone has to have an epic sounding name. They travel from the Kingdom of “Unncessarily Complicated Name” through the Forest of “Something Barely Pronounceable” to fight the Dark Elves from “Some Long Name With Lots of Consonants.” There is too many unnecessary fantasy elements in this movie that when this ever-growing party encountered a monster I’m surprised they didn’t stop and roll a D20 for Initiative checks.
Rolling D20 for initiative on encounters would really only apply if this wandering group actually encountered anything. The majority of the movie is just people wandering around in a forest. As a result the CGI dragon that pops up from time to time actually doesn’t look too bad. What else was the money used for production supposed to go to? There’s no massive sets, no A-list actors to pay, no grand battles full effects shots; only people in the forest and a CGI dragon. Oh there is mention of an “epic fantasy” story, but that all takes place off screen.
There’s really nothing more I can say about the ineptitude behind Dragon. It is clear this was written not out of any kind of devotion to the genre, this was just a quick project to spit out on DVD in order to ride the coattails of a similar and more popular film. Granted that is what The Asylum is known for with their mockbusters, but this one is lazier than that. While most of their mockbusters at least have some sort of personality, something that makes them a bit more memorable than just being a ripoff of another film, Dragon is just about as dead as a movie can possibly be. The entire script reads as if someone cobbled together their idea of “this is what Fantasy is supposed to sound like, right?” The performances are wooden and stiff with actors reading lines they really don’t care about and, at times, have no clue what they’re talking about.
I will continue to watch films from The Asylum, not only because I like bad movies but because there really are some hidden gems in their filmography. I hope Dragon is a low I won’t come across again any time soon.