I didn’t really have any expectations going into Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves. All I wanted was an entertaining movie with some good humor and action scenes, and that’s exactly what I got!
Confession time: I’ve never actually played D&D. It’s one of those things I’ve always wanted to get into, but never really knew how to start. So I may not have gotten all of the references, but nonetheless, I can appreciate a good fantasy film. And with Chris Pine and Hugh Grant in the cast, I was cautiously optimistic.
Honor Among Thieves starts with Edgin (Pine) and Holga (Michelle Rodriguez) in prison after a job gone wrong. After they bust out to return to Edgin’s daughter Kira (Chloe Coleman), they learn that they were double-crossed by two members of their party, who have since adopted Kira and lied to her about what happened. Desperate to get his daughter back, Edgin and Holga round up a new party, including their old friend Simon (Justice Smith) and a young shapeshifter named Doric (Sophia Lillis).
The first thing you have to know about Honor Among Thieves is that it’s funny. Edgin is probably the least fantasy-like fantasy character ever (there’s a whole scene where Doric asks what his purpose is in the group), but his dry commentary is almost breaking the fourth wall. He seems to be, not an audience stand-in, but perhaps meant to be the voice of someone playing the D&D campaign. Forge (Grant) is also a constant source of humor as the loveable rogue who gets less loveable as the movie goes on.
But a lot of the humor also comes from the situation. There’s a scene where they have to raise the dead in order to find a lost magical artifact, which involves Simon using an incantation and then they are allowed to ask only five questions before the person is returned to their death. (Why five questions? Who knows, that’s just how it works.) Sometimes they only need one or two questions so they just ask random questions (“Do you like cats? What’s your favorite food?”) to let the dead rest again.
The next thing you have to know about Honor Among Thieves is that this is a film that absolutely nails the scale of its setting. Particularly after watching the new season of Shadow and Bone, with its closed-in sets, even when the action is outside, I appreciate how epic the world of Honor Among Thieves looked. I don’t care that most of it is CGI; it looks real. And the world is huge, with mountains and cities and vast open spaces.
There are also some really great action sequences. Granted, most of them revolve around Holga, but Xenk (Rege-Jean Page) also gets a pretty awesome fight scene. And there is a big climactic battle at the end that balances old-school fight choreography with magic and shapeshifting, plus someone using a lute as a weapon. And, naturally, there is a scene where they’re running away from a dragon that was both tense and funny.
Basically, Honor Among Thieves is a fun-filled romp through a fantasy world. It’s funny, but it also has heart, and some pretty good messages about believing in yourself and never giving up. And it’s just so much fun. I had a great time.
Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves hits theaters March 31.
Author: Jamie Sugah
Jamie has a BA in English with a focus in creative writing from The Ohio State University. She self-published her first novel, The Perils of Long Hair on a Windy Day, which is available through Amazon. She is currently an archivist and lives in New York City with her demon ninja vampire cat. She covers television, books, movies, anime, and conventions in the NYC area.
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