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Friday, December 8 12:00 AM ET

Trailer Review: Eragon

By Brian Briggs

Reviewinator

Trailer Quicktime
Starring

Edward Speleers
Jeremy Irons

Director Stefen Fangmeier
Official Site Link
US Opening

December 15, 2006

Rated PG
Genre Fantasy
Explosions 5
Weapons Swords, axe, longbow, stick, dragon, flying man

Man Quotient

4.8

(Explosions + Weapons + Hot Babes - Kisses)/ Minutes

Voiceover Yes
Trailer
Déjà Vu
Dungeons and Dragons
Geek Factor 55%
See Trailer? Yes
See Movie? No

I have never read Eragon. Therefore, I can't comment on the book, or how great or derivative it is. From my readings of reviews it appears that if you're in your teens or literarily stunted you rave about the book, if you've read plenty of core fantasy novels and are over the age of sixteen then you think it sucks.

Whether the book sucks or not, they made a movie anyway. I have seen plenty of movies with dragons in them. It's challenging to make a good one. I don't think Eragon will be an exception.

The trailer opens with Jeremy Irons telling us about the evil king ruling the land. The king (a miscast John Malkovich) is a tyrant who punishes disloyalty with death. A lackey tells him that he has no one left to fear. Memo to the king: Never believe your lackeys.

It wasn't always like that, the world used to live in peace where mighty warriors rode dragons and protected the land. (Probably not that much peace if you needed warriors riding around on dragons, but at least it was better than having a jerky king.)

There is hope that a new dragon will be born and a warrior will emerge to ride him. Then he can do all the killing and there will be peace again.

I'm sad... No wait... I'm happy...
No wait... I'm angry!

Next we learn that someone has stolen the dragon's egg from the king. He's not happy about it. Eragon finds the egg, the dragon is born and can you believe it? Eragon is the chosen one!

We're told the force comes from the midichlorians, er, that magic comes from the dragons. Sorry.

Next there are a bunch of battle sequences with swords and spears and dragonriders. I believe there was a place called Pern at one point, but this trailer doesn't have trouble borrowing from other movies.

I've heard this tale compared to Lord of the Rings, but I don't see any of the gravity that Lord of the Rings had. The costumes and settings seem generic, nothing like the detailed history of Lord of the Rings.

I’m uninspired by the actor playing Eragon. His acting skills rival Anakin Skywalker's. We also have a director who is directing his first movie. Those are two strikes that are difficult to overcome.

There are many stars in the movie, however. Jeremy Irons, Rachel Weisz, John Malkovich, Djimon Honsou, who have all been in good movies, but good actors don't necessarily equate to a good movie.

Conclusion on Trailer: Pretty good special effects, but nothing you haven't seen before. John Malkovich seems out of place as the king. Eragon acts as well as most rocks. It won't kill you to watch it, but it probably won't make you want to see the movie either.

Conclusion on Movie: A wooden titular character and a first-time director doesn't bode well for this one. If you've read the book and enjoyed it, then you'll probably go see the movie and be disappointed. If you haven't, then I wouldn't recommend it.

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