Reviewed by The Buz
Starring Jason Statham, Ray Liotta, Burt Reynolds, guys in rubber suits
Directed by Dr. Uwe Boll
Distributed by Fox Home Entertainment
“Why”? The single-worded question I always seem to ask myself every time I put my eyes through another Uwe Boll movie. Why? Why must this be? What in the fuck did I just see? I know I’m supposed to give a synopsis here of what the movie is about, but I can’t think of anything. I honestly don’t know what happens. There’s a series of images that last for 127 minutes; then credits roll. One hundred and twenty-seven minutes of pain. Pure, simple pain.
First and foremost, as I’m sure most of you know, In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale is based on the popular video game Dungeon Siege, not in the name of any king. With that being said, I have never played Dungeon Siege so have no idea what parts of the film were just like the game and what parts differed. I’m going to review this baby as if it were only a movie and not an “adaptation” of something more. Interestingly enough, this proved to be Boll’s best movie (I have not seen Postal yet, mind you). There are great set pieces, some actually pretty entertaining fight scenes, great cinematography, and a hilarious non-British Ron Perlman. Amid all that though is pure, unfiltered shit.
The story follows a farmer who coincidentally enough is actually named Farmer (Jason Statham). Go figure. We first see him farming and hanging with his wife and kid, who aren’t actually named wife and kid. Parallel to this storyline we see Leelee Sobieski mackin’ on a non-British Ray Liotta, whom we can judge by the poofiness of his hair to be quite evil indeed. And perpendicular to that storyline we have a non-British Burt Reynolds as the King of Ehb and a hilarious over-the-top Matthew Lillard as his nephew, who looks to be reenacting his role as Stew from Scream. Except British. And more crazy-eyed. Soon we discover that Lillard and Liotta are being badfellas and are in cahoots to kill the king and take over the land, thus setting up our trifecta of confusing action epicness.
Somewhere along the way Farmer is attacked by evil forces named the Krug that look much like the putty clan from Mighty Morphing Power Rangers, except blacker. As in the color. They are being controlled by Ray Liotta’s character, Gallian, or his hair. No real rhyme or reason except to cause chaos apparently. This makes Farmer angry so he kicks a motherfucker or two and throws a boomerang. The boomerang, I’m going to go out on a limb here, is an homage to the video game since it seems like one of Boll’s retarded “Dis vill remind fans how awesome I am!” ideas. Farmer and his neighbor Norick (Perlman) then set off to rescue his family (well, halfway anyway; one of them dies, but I don’t want to spoil it for all my readers). And quite an adventure it is. All the while this is going on, there is a power struggle between Lillard and Reynolds, Lillard and Liotta, and Sobieski and whatever male she encounters on screen. The movie switches back and forth among all these storylines until it just becomes an inept inbred hate child of The Lord of the Rings and The Chronic(WHAT)cles of Narnia.
The movie is presented in anamorphic widescreen (2.35:1) so you can see every piece of scenery wasted away. The special features include a ten-minute behind-the-scenes featurette of the crew setting up various shots. At first I was hopeful watching this, thinking maybe I would get to see Boll actually “direct” and laugh quietly to myself. However, he is only on camera once and says one sentence before we cut to the next shot being set up. This feature was almost as boring as the movie itself. Almost.
Next we have nine minutes of deleted scenes. After 127 minutes of pain, I was not shocked that the editor decided to only cut nine fucking minutes. There needed to be 45 minutes worth of deleted scenes. Nonetheless, in these nine minutes there is a hilarious Jason Statham kick-a-thon in which he proceeds to kick every Putty Krug monster thing that comes within five feet of him. This was really the only redeeming deleted scene. Everything else was just fluff that was cut from the film. And unfortunately the DVD does not come with a commentary track. Oh, how I would have loved to have heard a Ron Perlman/Uwe Boll commentary. Pure fried comedy gold. Alas, this DVD decided to skip out on that part. Probably due to the enormous amount of space the film itself takes up.
As I said before, In the Name of the King is by far Boll’s best movie — if only for the truly epic shoveling sequence (you’ll never EVER see anything like it). I hate to say it, but he’s growing as a director. He went from shitting on the carpet to shitting in his pants. Still sucks, but less of a mess.
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
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