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Dungeons and Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God is a 2005 fantasy film directed by Gerry Lively. It is a made-for-TV sequel of sorts to the 2000 film Dungeons & Dragons, which in turn was based on the popular role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons (or D&D). The only returning actor is Bruce Payne reprising his role as the evil Damodar. DVD release was February 7, 2006.
Damodar, the henchman of the main villain from the first movie, is back with a vengeance. Reborn as an undead creature, due to a curse placed on him by former master Profion, Damodar pursued an evil artifact for some hundred years, one capable of unleashing unstoppable destruction on Izmir and the descendants of those who caused his demise. The movie opens as he finally gets his hands on the artifact after being lead by a magmin, a mysterious black orb also the power source of Falzure (later described), and frees himself from the undead curse after splitting a lake protected by a kraken.
Soon, Izmir is alerted to the rising of this ancient evil. Berek, a fighter and former captain of the king's guard, now a bored and unsatisfied lord of the King, and Melora, his wife, a gifted young mage, identify the threat as Faluzure (the black dragon god of destruction and decay) poison towers erupt from the mountain that imprisons Falazure then action was taken. The King requests that Berek is to assemble a party of adventurers; a group small enough to travel to Damodar's lair undetected, but strong enough to face their enemies. Lux (a female barbarian), Dorian (a male Cleric of Obad-Hai), Ormaline (a female elven wizard), and Nim (a rogue) join the former captain of the king's guard to elimate the threat of Faluzure reawakening.
Unlike the first movie, which could be considered medium-budget, this is a low-budget production with a cast of relatively newcomers (with the exception of Bruce Payne as Damodar). Also unlike the first movie, many details from the Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game have been included. The professions of the five adventurers are accurately depicted and they work together, each utilizing their individual strengths. The equipment of the adventurers are items which avid gamers will probably recognize (e.g. gem of true seeing, flask of purple worm acid, vorpal sword, ring of the ram, staff of lightning, hammer of smiting, etc...). The spells cast by wizards are accurate renditions of the ones from the roleplaying game, namely that spells are not cast at will, but must first be prepared and in limited amounts.
The villains have also been designed closely to the D&D canon. As part of the bestiary, one can find an aggressive white dragon, darkmantles, spectres, magmins, lizardfolk (one can be seen restoring Damodar's arm), and a lich. Special mention must be given to Klaxx the Malign (the lich), who is behaving how a lich should according to common D&D behavior -- staying close to the action for a potential piece of power or knowledge to grab, but not exactly taking any risk. There were also dead drow hanging from the ceiling and whose blood was used for Damodar's "dinner". Juiblex was also mentioned, but the demon lord wasn't actually in the film.
Of special note is the commentary track which is composed of "Lidda," "Krusk," and "Jozan" (iconic characters from the current D&D ruleset) quipping upon the action on the screen.
From quick glimpses in the DVD's Interview with Gary Gygax, the heroes are shown to have the following stats in the D&D game: Berek (LG male human fighter 7) Lux (CG female human barbarian 7) Nim (CG male human rogue 7) Dorian (N male human cleric 7 [Obad-Hai]) Ormaline (N female elf wizard 9) Melora (NG female human cleric 1/wizard 4 [Obad-Hai])
Despite the film's increased attention to its source material (to the point that numerous illustrations from the D&D core rulebooks were used in the film), it has produced mixed reviews. Many still consider it to be a vast improvement and of a much higher-quality than the first D&D movie.
Viewer comments tend to agree that the second film was the better-written and conceived of the two, but did not have the budget and special effects of the first film. That said, the special effects of the second film were still considered to be very impressive, despite the smaller budget. The visual effects were done by London-based CGI house Cinevision, (Cinevision is also slated to do the special effects in the upcoming series) with an estimated budget of $6,000,000.00 for more than 400 shots, double the number originally anticipated. This added up to half of the movie's entire budget.
Early in 2007 The Sci-Fi Channel was rumored to be filming a mini-series based on the movie The series was said feature many of the original cast (Including a resurrected Dorian) and scheduled to appear in the fall 09 lineup. However the blurb on Scifi.com has since been removed and no further information is available.
- Official site at SciFi.com
- Wrath of the Dragon God Interview at Sorcerer's Placede:Dungeons & Dragons – Die Macht der Elemente