"The First Chapter of the Inheritance Trilogy"
|Looks cool right?|
|Use the....not Force Eragon.|
Eragon is based on the first book in a series of books about a magical world of swords and sorcery, and dragon riders who protect the realm. These dragon riders have magic swords, and uphold peace and order in the galaxy...er kingdom. One might, perhaps boldly, refer to them as "medieval Jedi, riding dragons." They have special weapons, they have magic powers... I wish this was the end of the similarities but honestly, the only thing I could think after I saw this movie was that I liked it a lot better when it was called Star Wars: A New Hope. To generalize, a young boy (Eragon, yes that's the word dragon only the d is replaced with an E, the next letter in line for god's sake) obtains an important thing sought by a really evil bad guy, who works for the really evil capital E Emperor. This important thing literally falls from the sky (It's a dragon egg though not droids!!) He is assisted by a mysterious old man, regarded as a loony toon by the locals, after fleeing the evil troops of the bad guy, lets call him drag queen Darth Vader, who burns down Eragon's home. Did I mention he lives with his uncle on a farm? Yeah he does. So after his uncle's farm gets burned down by the evil Empire, Eragon goes on a journey of revenge with Bron (the wise old sage,who used to be a Dragon Jedi, but he failed to save the republic or whatever holy crap) who teaches him how to use his dragon Jedi powers. Eragon becomes aware of the princess elf girl who leads the resistance being captured by the evil Empire, because of a dragon Jedi vision he has, and infiltrates a deadly fortress to save her. In the process sagely old Bron dies. The princess, Eragon, and some other guy no one cares about find the rebels, and then they put up a last ditch effort to save their base and the rebellion that involves Eragon fighting the badguy guy, and while they don't blow up the Death Star, I think that I've established that this movie is freakishly like Episode IV with slight Lord of the Rings overtones. Let's try and forget about the plot, now that we've established it's Star Wars.
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That's not even the worst part though as far as I'm concerned. Despite being a terrible movie that received terrible reviews, Eragon actually grossed pretty impressively. With a budget of around $100,000,000, Eragon was actually successful, grossing around $250,000,000 dollars in its full run. It was the 13th highest grossing fantasy live-action movie of ALL TIME in the US. Granted, it opened to essentially no competition in the middle of the winter (The week after its release it took a serious blow when, drumroll please, Night at the Museum opened. Gross.) but still, it really hurts to think that plenty of actually GOOD movies gross crap (You'll see a lot of them right here on this blog) while shit heaps like Eragon go on to gross hundreds of millions of dollars. I understand that the book on which it was based has (or at least had) a huge fanbase, but you'd think someone would warn all their friends to not go anywhere near this movie. I wish someone had warned me. Mercifully, no sequels were ever made, and if we are lucky, they never will be. You might note that I did not mention anything about how this film adapts in respect to the book. Admittedly, they did a shit job of that too (there are a ridiculous number of differences, it barely resembles the book at all) but I don't think you even need to grade on that axis. The movie was awful, as a movie, and so never gets to the 'but is it like the book?' stage of the process.
Next post I will take a break from maliciously vivisecting awful movies, and write about a movie I feel got a raw deal for being innovative.