The blood-soaked tale of a Norse warrior's battle against the great and murderous troll, Grendel. Out of allegiance to the King Hrothgar, the much respected Lord of the Danes, Beowulf leads... See full summary »
The young, sickly King Einon was wounded in a battle. In order for him to survive, he is healed by Draco, a dragon. Some years later, Bowen, a dragon slayer, encounters Draco. The two team up to form a traveling duo that perform an act, but the act is only known by themselves. Bowen supposedly "slays" Draco and then collects a reward from the town or village that he protects by killing the dragon who had been "terrorizing" them. From there, Bowen and Draco must save the entire kingdom from the rule of the now evil King Einon, who is part of Draco and Draco a part of him. Written by
David Landers <email@example.com>
There was so much potential in the premise for Dragonheart. It could have been taken many steps further if the production team and writers genuinely cared about the film that they were making. Unfortunately, they weren't and could only be bothered in hashing together a quick and easy movie with no substance. I'm not sure what the pitch was to Universal but it seems like a bunch of C-list producers and writers felt like making Braveheart...for kids. Only with a Dragon instead of William Wallace.
The plot is so simplistic that it really could be accurately summed up as 'bad king nasty to villagers, knight and dragon help'. Whoa, slow down, man. I don't think I can comprehend so much in a small space of time. Rob Cohen is hardly an artistic director but the action and framing are below even his meagre standards. There are some nice shots here and there but the rest of the film looks incredibly fake thanks to the truly terrible production design.
When you take away all of that, all you are left with is a film with a CGI dragon. But in the 11 years since this was released the standard of such effects has improved drastically. Draco the Dragon looks just a little bit too dated, though he is still as cute and lovable as he always was.
The problems with the film extend even to the extras. It's bad enough that such talented actors are given such rotten dialogue to work with (why none of them requested to tweak it a little bit is beyond me) but I am assuming that no one bothered to give the villagers in the background any instructions before rolling. You have no idea how distracting it is.
Another potential thrown away is the religious element. I guess that no one involved in making the film wanted to offend any kind of faith and erased as much religion from the film as possible. It doesn't even clarify that it's set in Britain either. There are some flippant remarks to Camelot (conviniently just a few miles down the road from any point on the map) but almost the whole film was shot in Romania and the accents are all over the place, as usual.
The one, major, plus-point of the movie is Randy Edelman's glorious score. It's the only decent score he's ever composed in his entire career but it's simply amazing. Well worth hunting down the CD for, I assure you.
Dragonheart is just too tame and tepid to make any kind of lasting impression. There too many faults to forgive. It's better than Eragon, but nowhere near the beauty of Dragonslayer.
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