STARRING: Ed Speleers, Jeremy
Irons, Sienna Guillory, Robert Carlyle, John Malkovich, Garrett Hedlund, Djimon
2006, 100 Minutes, Directed by: Stefan Fangmeier
is a work of such staggering unoriginality that not merely does it steal plot
points and characters wholesale from the first Star
Wars movie, but it is at times almost a shot-for-shot remake of George
Lucas’ 1977 flick. In one scene our teenaged blonde-haired hero mopes while
staring at the distant sunset, and I half expected there to be two suns in the
sunset and not just one . . .
Apparently author Christopher
Paolini wrote the novel on which the movie is based while still a teenager. It
shows. Heck, when I was in my early teens I used to write and draw comic books
that stole wholeheartedly from sources such as Star Wars,
Battlestar Galactica and other comics such as
Fantastic Four. Only difference was that I never
got published, nor did my plagiarized comics become a national bestseller before
being made into a tedious medium-budgeted big screen Hollywood flick to which
unsuspecting cinema patrons expecting another Lord of the
Rings or even Chronicles of Narnia for the month
of December would be mercilessly subjected.
Sour grapes? Probably – I
forked out a full ticket price to see Eragon. Stop me if you have heard
any of the following before: a long time ago a caste of magicians with special
powers known as the Jedi, er . . sorry . . . Dragon Riders was betrayed by one
their own, Darth Va . . . er, sorry . . . King . . .
"George Lucas should sue their sorry plagiarist asses!"
Well, never mind. Soon our
blonde-haired teenaged farm boy hero Luke Skywalker, er sorry, I just can’t do
this without plagiarizing myself as I’m sure every other critic you have read by
now have pointed out these similarities. (At one stage in the story I was
thinking “Mmmh . . they haven’t thrown in a Han Solo equivalent yet” and whadda
know? In steps a new sardonic sidekick for our hero! )
Eragon is simply
Star Wars retold in a
Lord of the Rings setting. It is such an
obvious rip-off that I fervently hope that George Lucas would sue their rotten
useless plagiarist asses, even though he is already so decadently rich by this
time by plagiarizing himself and others. (It would however mean suing the
company which handles the distribution of his Star Wars
movies, namely 20th Century Fox).
When something is as ploddingly
unoriginal as Eragon it becomes a chore to sit through. And when you’ve
stopped shaking your head in disbelief at how brazenly they stole from Star
Wars, you’re angry that you didn’t go see Casino Royale again or
perhaps even Happy Feet (hey, you just gotta love seeing those cute
singing penguins trying to survive their harsh and cruel environment).
about Eragon is cut rate, including the special effects and sets which
tries to achieve the sort of scale and majesty attained by Peter Jackson’s
Lord of the Rings trilogy but just ends up
looking second rate by comparison. Also, Ed Speleers as our hero Eragon gets my
vote as most wooden performance in a fantasy/sci-fi flick since . . . well . . .
Hayden Christensen as Young Darth Vader in Attack of the
Clones and Revenge of the Sith.
Listen, I’ll spare you the
hassle and a few bucks. If you want an Eragon experience (except a good
one), re-rent the Star Wars and the Lord of
the Rings trilogies instead. If you want a bad Eragon experience,
check out Dungeons & Dragons (which also starred a
pay check collecting Jeremy Irons) and Attack of the Clones again. And
make your own popcorn – it’ll cost your far less than what the cinemas are
shaking you down for . . .