Da'ud Bob's Movie Review
August 2020

So, there it was, this 2017 movie, sitting in the Netflix list of movies that Anna Sue believes I should review for you. And, she was out for the evening, and I knew that she herself had no interest in seeing it. (Sometimes she does. Especially the Chinese and Korean movies, as well as the Indian and Japanese ones. This was none of those.) So I thought to myself, “Why not?” and after a little preliminary research – discovering, for example, that this film was the fourth in a series of, now, five movies, which they don’t tell you in the titles, having actually only numbered the third one – I sat myself down in my big ol’ La-Z-Bubba recliner, grabbed my pen and paper, and hit “Play.” Because you really ought to know about these flicks before you get trapped into watching one. (I have already reviewed the first and third films in this series. I somehow missed seeing the second one. I don’t know how. If I can find it, I’ll watch it and review it for you. And I added the fifth one, released this year (2020) to the Netflix list, so I’ll be seeing it, if not in “all the old familiar places”, in the near future in the video watching room of my deluxe double-wide.) Anyway, all of this is just to explain to you why it is that this month, Da’ud Bob reviews for you what should have been titled DragonHeart 4, but instead was confusingly titled DragonHeart: Battle for the Heartfire.

Starring Patrick Stewart as the voice of the dragon Drago, Tom Rhys Harries as Edric, Jessamine-Bliss Bell as Meghan, André Eriksen as Thorgrim, Richard Cordery as the Earl Robert, Martin Hutson as Osmund, Marte Germaine Christensen as Sable, Ørjan Gamst as Krokr, and Daniel Berge Halvorsen as Hakon, the basic plot of this film is: Drago the dragon was bonded with King Gareth. When the King dies, his potential heirs, twin grandchildren who possess the dragon's unique strengths, use their inherited powers against each other to vie for the throne. When Drago's source of power, known as the “Heartfire”, is stolen, more than the throne is at stake. The siblings must end their rivalry with swords and sorcery, or the kingdom may fall. It is really slightly more complicated than that, in part because since birth the twins have, in addition to developing some superhuman powers through the years, been “dragon-marked”; that is, Edric’s back has some scaly bits on it, as does Meghan’s face. Her marks are harder to hide than this in society, and of course townsfolk think she’s a witch and deserves to be killed, so they separate (he thinks she killed their father, so there’s that, too) only to meet again under trying circumstances.

Good Points: It’s only 98 minutes long. The CGI is very well done. Sir Patrick Stewart as the voice of the dragon is a nice step back toward the first movie, where the dragon was voiced by Sean Connery. (Robby Benson did the voice of the dragon in the second installment, and Ben Kingsley did it in DragonHeart 3. Stewart is an improvement.)

Bad Points: A lot of the costuming, which was from an odd mix of periods and from no period at all. One dress looked like it was right out of the 1950s. The castles were an odd mix of partially ruined and brand new construction. The plot had a number of weaknesses, as well as characters with mixed, and sometimes hard to fathom, motives. And why didn’t the dragon wake up while she was stealing his heartfire?

Zero breasts. ½ gallon of blood. 22 dead bodies. Arrow fu. Fisticuffs. Sword fu. Axe fu. Battleaxe fu. Dragon fire fu. Ball fu. Fire arrow fu. Spear fu. Stone fu. Fighters roll. Waves roll. Gratuitous Moor. Gratuitous Vikings. Gratuitous caterpillar. Academy Award nomination to Sir Patrick Stewart as the voice of Drago the dragon, for making such a believable dragon voice. An 83 on the Vomit Meter. 1½ Stars. Da’ud Bob says, “I’ve warned you in the past about how bad movies with a number in the title can be. They may have left the number itself out of the title, but it’s still number four in the series, and that should be warning enough. Check it out!”


Upcoming movies and miniseries to watch for!

August 21, 2020 (this is at least the second time the release date has been pushed back. No thanks, Covid!)
To save her father from death in the army, a young maiden secretly goes in his place and becomes one of China's greatest heroines in the process. A live-action feature film based on Disney's animated Mulan, starring Yifei Liu, Donnie Yen, Jet Li, Li Gong, Jason Scott Lee.
The Last Duel
December 25, 2020 (limited release) and January 8, 2021 (wide release)
Set in 14th century France, King Charles VI declares that Knight Jean de Carrouges settle his dispute with his squire by challenging him to a duel. Directed by Ridley Scott, from a screenplay written by Ben Affleck and Matt Damon. Starring Matt Damon, Adam Driver, and Jodie Comer.

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