In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale

 
LOTR copycat is so bad it's good -- for laughs.
  • Review Date: April 14, 2008
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Release Year: 2008
  • Running Time: 124 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Gallian and the Duke are obsessed with power, even if it means destroying an entire kingdom. The rest of the main characters are all courageous and selfless, willing to die for their cause.

Violence

Several violent battles between the kingdom's townsfolk and soldiers against Gallian's troops of "gurks." Many deaths, but they're not graphic/bloody. A child is killed, but it happens off camera.

Sex

Gallian and Muriella kiss and fool around (clothed) in bed; he makes reference to "taking" her virtue. Farmer and his wife also kiss a few times, including once in bed. Duke Fallow has a young woman sit on his lap while he gropes her chest and arms.

Language

Minor -- one or two uses of "damn" and "hell."

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Duke Fallow drinks wine and asks for it before a duel.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is an epic fantasy adventure in the style of The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Despite the overwhelming number of negative reviews, tweens -- especially boys -- may want to see it, partly thanks to English action star Jason Statham (The Transporter). There are several intense, violent battles between orc-like creatures and the kingdom's army and civilians, but very few bloody deaths (it's obvious that many, many people die, but it's not graphic). The sexual content is limited to three or four kissing scenes between two couples -- two of which occur in a bed. The language is remarkably tame, and, this being a fantasy flick, there are no product tie-ins.

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What's the story?

English action star Jason Statham (The Transporter) stars in this low-rent Lord of the Rings-style epic that somehow lured Gimli himself (John Rhys-Davies) to sign on as Merlin-esque king's wizard Merick. Statham plays a farmer named Farmer (he believes you are what you do) who's living a pretty idyllic country life. But when the rogue wizard Gallian (Ray Liotta, cranking up the crazy) unleashes an army of orc-like creatures to destroy the kingdom, Farmer's wife is kidnapped and his son is killed. Bent on revenge, Farmer joins the king's (Burt Reynolds) troops and proceeds to single-handedly defeat Gallian's gruesome fighters.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

It's not just that the movie's production values are low -- which is surprising, since German filmmaker Uwe Boll reportedly had a $60 million budget -- it's that nothing works, least of all Statham, who's as charismatic here as a block of cheddar. At least the supporting players -- like Rhys-Davies, Ron Perlman as Farmer's mentor, and Brian White as the king's general -- make the most of their laughable lines. And Liotta is surprisingly funny in lunatic mode. But Leelee Sobieski, who once seemed poised for a leading-lady career, is dull as Gallian's ex-girlfriend -- who happens to be Merick's daughter and fellow sorceress.

In the Name of the King's similarities to the Rings films are so obvious (almost frame-for-frame in certain shots) that you have to wonder whether Peter Jackson will get royalties for Boll's mess. But as the second hour closes in (it's a nearly unbearable 124 minutes long), some moviegoers may find themselves laughing -- unintentionally, of course. If you don't mind movies that are so bad they're entertaining in their awfulness, this is a fine pick. Just don't say you weren't warned.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how this film was influenced by The Lord of the Rings movies. In addition to the presence of John Rhys-Davies (who played Gimli in Rings and is Magus Merick here), what scenes, characters, or themes reminded you of LOTR? Do you think the similarities were intentional? Why? Also, is the violence in this movie realistic or not? Why does that matter? Does the lack of strong language and graphic violence mean this film is targeted at younger audiences?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:January 11, 2008
DVD release date:April 14, 2008
Cast:Jason Statham, John Rhys-Davies, Leelee Sobieski
Director:Uwe Boll
Studio:Freestyle Releasing
Genre:Fantasy
Run time:124 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:intense battle sequences.

This review of In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale was written by

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  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 14 years old Written byMike G. June 19, 2015
age 11+
 

Oh. My. God.

This movie is pure and utter drivel - an awful LoTR ripoff that serves just the inexplicable purpose to keep Uwe Boll working. Just atrocious.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Teen, 13 years old Written by9001 June 1, 2010
age 12+
 

I loved this movie! However, it's violent, so I rate it iffy for ages 12-13.

Pretty violent movie that I enjoyed tremendously. I don't get how you guys can think it's so bad.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Teen, 14 years old Written bypatthetrick April 9, 2008
age 0+
 

this movie sucked

do not watch this movie.it was the worst movie i have ever seen,

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