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The film is silly, derivative and mostly forgettable but you’d be surprised how much fun you’ll have while you’re watching this Dungeons & Dragons reboot.

After the huge commercial and artistic failure of the 2000 Dungeons & Dragons movie any new iteration would have been a big improvement. But Honor Among Thieves does more than that: it actually is a pretty good popcorn flick.

Sure, the film indulges in all the tropes that have dominated the fantasy genre for the past few decades, but at least it has oodles of fun doing so. The gags – both visual and sporken – mostly land, the action isn’t bogged down by world-building mumbo-jumbo and the plot is an entertaining and often slyly surprising variation on the heist movie.

Honor Among Thieves’ main asset is its cast though. Chris Pine savours the chance to show his comedic chops (and some singing), Michelle Rodriguez enjoys every minute of her best role in years, while Justice Smith and Sophia Lillis are the charming emotional heart of the ensemble. Curiously the one person who doesn’t fully register is Hugh Grant, who doesn’t quite camp it up enough to make for a bad guy that’s both fun and menacing.

Am I saying that this new Dungeons & Dragons is the best fantasy movie since Lord of the Rings? Of course not. But if your main goal is a diverting two hours at the multiplex, the picture packs a better punch than it has any right to do.

release: 2023

director: John Francis Daly, Jonathan Goldstein

starring: Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez, Justice Smith, Sophia Lillis, Hugh Grant


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