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Overall Rating
2.08

Awesome: 4.71%
Worth A Look: 2.35%
Average: 18.82%
Pretty Bad44.71%
Total Crap: 29.41%

6 reviews, 49 user ratings


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Eragon
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by Lybarger

"It sort of flames out."
2 stars

At a recent screening of “Eragon,” a woman lamented, “It’s like a teenage guy wrote this.” She was right.

The first book of Christopher Paolini’s The Inheritance Trilogy was published in 2002 when the author was only 19 years old.

The movie adapted from Paolini’s massive debut novel is clearly aimed his demographic, with a quasi-medieval setting full of swords, sorcery, a pretty moonlighting singer (Joss Stone) and the occasional dragon. It also has a plot that seems more like a template than a story, sketchy characters and groan-inducing dialogue.

It’s difficult to keep a straight face when the evil king Galbatorix (John Malkovich) bellows, “I suffer without the stone.” Without having read the book, it’s hard to tell if Paolini or screenwriter Peter Buchman is to blame for this linguistic fumble, but hearing it immediately gets “Eragon” off to a shaky start.

A witch named Angela (Stone) has swiped the shiny blue rock from him and has somehow given it to Eragon (newcomer Edward Speleers), a farm boy.

The lad soon discovers that it’s actually a dragon egg. When the adorable baby hatches, Eragon learns that he is destined to ride her and right the wrongs of Galbatrix’s reign. His mentor is a fellow named Brom (Jeremy Irons), whom the rest of Eragon’s village has dismissed as merely an old windbag.

Brom has the unenviable tasks of teaching Eragon to ride the dragon, hooking him up with the rebels and protecting Eragon from his own impulsiveness. The two are also being pursued by a murderous wizard (Robert Carlyle) who’s almost as unstoppable as he is determined.

The quest has some genuine delights (watching the dragon grow up is a treat) that a somewhat blunted by fact that there’s little in the story that hasn’t been done before or occasionally better.

Freshman director Stefen Fangmeier made his mark as a special effects wizard in movies like “Master and Commander.” He and his crew have a knack for making impossible images like worm infested corpse soldiers seem real.

But “Eragon” suffers from a visual style that owes a crushing debt to “Star Wars” and “The Lord of Rings.”

Fangmeier has also made the perplexing decision not to have the dragon’s mouth move when she has something to say to Eragon. The book indicates the two have a telepathic bond, but on screen it looks cheesy to have Oscar-winner Rachel Weisz’s voice coming out of motionless jaws.

At least the dragon has more personality and development than the humans. Malkovich seems understandably indifferent, and Speleers is easily upstaged by his reptilian leading lady. Considering all the power his character possesses, Carlyle is surprisingly unintimidating.

The dragon may be able to carry Eragorn on her back, but she needs a more support from people to carry the movie. Note: This review was originally published in the December 28-January 3 issue of County Cable (countycable.net).

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=15294&reviewer=382
originally posted: 01/13/07 12:15:19
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User Comments

10/07/13 dr.lao In a word, uninspired 2 stars
9/12/10 Robert Eragon the movie is Eragon the Book Extra Lite. The book has is suprisingly well done. 1 stars
8/21/10 PAUL SHORTT UNORIGINAL AND DERIVATIVE 2 stars
7/02/10 Innocence_Wasted Eragon bored me period. I couldn't even finish the godforsaken excuse of a film. 1 stars
4/11/10 Josh Credibility goes to the visual effects only. Dialogue shows cheezy pre LOTR style. 2 stars
10/28/09 Blah Blahson I just read the (awesome) book and I realized what a piece of crap this was. 1 stars
8/05/09 jake worst movie adaption ever. amazing book got turned into a simplified kids movie 1 stars
11/16/08 Carmen Book was mediocre at best, film was just bad. 1 stars
11/03/08 Aure liked the dragon, but thats about it... 2 stars
10/26/08 Guy Story lacks the character and emotional depth/history of LOTR. 3 stars
12/08/07 Sam Eli Horrible acting and writing, astoundingly derivative and almost non-existent acting/effects 1 stars
10/11/07 Charles Luke Skywalker goes to Middle Earth, not an original thought in the mix. 2 stars
10/01/07 R Kercher Cool SFX, but not on par w/book. There's a dragon, a boy & elf, and bad guy, but what else? 2 stars
8/11/07 Neil I was irritated by the bad lead acting and a 'ran-out-of-money' ending. 2 stars
6/10/07 Danielle Ophelia Oh, honestly... 1 stars
6/09/07 Rando Godd effects , terrible acting and dialogue, all different accents. 2 stars
6/07/07 Matt Highly derivative, to say the least, but still reasonable entertainment 3 stars
6/05/07 Mark Radburn Fuck all, who say Eragon sucks. 5 stars
5/07/07 Tracey Chambers Its not a bad movie, its pretty to look at but not much else 3 stars
4/23/07 hydrian If you haven't read the book, don't see it. If you have, DEFINITELY don't see it. 1 stars
4/02/07 Jenna I oved it and Ed Speleers is so cute 4 stars
3/30/07 fools♫gold A smart saying at each corner, and isn't not-worth-watching. I even debate a 4/5. 3 stars
3/20/07 man great fx but otherwise disappointing 2 stars
3/19/07 Quigley Rip-off of all the classics we love. Everything in this movie is heinous. 2006's 2nd worst 1 stars
3/05/07 --- WHY?Why was this movie made? AVOID. 1 stars
1/29/07 Molly thought the acting was ok sometimes, the rest was AWFUL. 1 stars
1/24/07 Jon I don't see how some of you people gave 3+ stars... The movie was terrible. 2 stars
1/13/07 Deadly Assassin "Lord of the Rings" for ADD sufferers. 3 stars
1/10/07 dupadoit rad 4 stars
1/09/07 ashley It was good IF you hadn't read the books but if you had it's a piece of crap! 2 stars
1/06/07 melissa The worst movie I have ever seen that has been made from a book. 1 stars
1/03/07 Max The movie was horrable just a cheap kockoff of starwars and LOTR, but the book was awsome. 1 stars
1/01/07 sarah very good, left out some parts and the leading role was very good also! 5 stars
12/31/06 Tim Shameless Massacre. It's like they shoved the book in a meat grinder. 1 stars
12/28/06 Nick Didn't follow the book at all, horrible acting, and hacked up cliche storyline.1/2 starrate 1 stars
12/27/06 Aaron Smith Not as good as Narnia, somewhat disappointing. 3 stars
12/26/06 Sammy Excellent! If you like fantasys this one's for you!! If you don't like fantasys- too bad!!! 5 stars
12/23/06 Catalina es muy buena,abran sus mentes,hay errores como en todas,pero no debe compararse con nada. 5 stars
12/22/06 Thomas Wynn Not the best 3 stars
12/21/06 Jon good story plot... bad acting. 2 stars
12/20/06 scotty lord of the rings lite 1 stars
12/20/06 Brooke The worst movie based on a book I've ever seen 1 stars
12/18/06 Eric Liked the book, wanted to like this...but couldn't. Rent LOTR instead, or buy the books. 2 stars
12/18/06 David Total waste of a great story. Put eragon name on it to make money 1 stars
12/18/06 Michael Silbergleid But if you haven't read the book, it's very enjoyable. 3 stars
12/18/06 Riki Definitely seen this movie before. And the boy cannot act! 2 stars
12/17/06 ToFarGone20 Total departure from the book...the author should be pissed! 3 stars
12/16/06 Ole Man Bourbon Not as bad as it could have been, but the leading man (boy) was gagoriffic. 3 stars
12/16/06 tony camonte this is a chep ass wanna be palgerising piece of crap! 1 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  15-Dec-2006 (PG)
  DVD: 20-Mar-2007

UK
  15-Dec-2006

Australia
  14-Dec-2006



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