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D&D Movie/TV D&D Movie - Wild Speculation and Poll

What do you expect/hope to see in the Setting, Tone and Framing of the upcoming D&D Movie? (Pick 3)

  • Setting - Forgotten Realms

    Votes: 50 53.8%
  • Setting - Eberron

    Votes: 4 4.3%
  • Setting - Dragonlance

    Votes: 4 4.3%
  • Setting - Homebrew/Unique

    Votes: 25 26.9%
  • Setting - Other (Specify)

    Votes: 8 8.6%
  • Tone - Grimdark

    Votes: 3 3.2%
  • Tone - Serious Fantasy (LotR)

    Votes: 21 22.6%
  • Tone - Lighthearted Fantasy

    Votes: 41 44.1%
  • Tone - Action Comedy

    Votes: 26 28.0%
  • Tone - Other (Specify)

    Votes: 4 4.3%
  • Framing - In Universe Storyteller

    Votes: 24 25.8%
  • Framing - Gaming Table

    Votes: 14 15.1%
  • Framing - Sucked into the game

    Votes: 4 4.3%
  • Framing - No Frame

    Votes: 35 37.6%
  • Framing - Other

    Votes: 2 2.2%

  • Total voters
    93

OB1

Jedi Master
I want.... a shrubbery!
How will you get a shrubbery? Will you be successful? What will it cost you to get it?

Thus the stakes are set. With comedy, the answer to those questions will likely be a reversal of expectations that are set up in a way that makes the audience laugh, just as the desire for a shrubbery (and not a pile of gold or something more typical of an adventure movie) is a funny answer to the stakes that proceeded it. Had someone just said "I want a shrubbery" in the middle of the film for no reason, it wouldn't have been funny.

Without stakes there is no conflict, without conflict there is no story.
 

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hopeless

Adventurer
DRUIDS a tale about a coven of druids who come together after one of their shrubberies is stolen.
Combining talking forest animals and plants all they need is a target then they'd ask their Treant friend about the Entwives and watch them storm that barricade!:eek:
 

Undrave

Hero
Well if one were to look into it further there already is a d&d movie out there and it is quite good as it was. It brought together a group of hero's of the main four races elf, human, dwarf, and halfling. They basically made it as an adventure in the mind if the characters and from a dms perspective it was kind of how I see a session for a campaign could go. The story building and character development were quite well done as well
I quite assure you that most of us are aware of that movie. A lot of us were alive when it came out. And we are also aware it was a giant bomb., so clearly you're in the minority if you think it was quite good. There was also two additional direct-to-DVD movies: Wrath of the Dragon God and Book of Vile Darkness.

Even if it WAS good, it's been 20 years. We can do another go at it and do better.
 



M_Natas

Explorer
Different people are able to suspend their disbelief more readily or less readily, and in different ways. The story within a story in TPB isn't inherently less capable of engaging the viewer just because it's overtly a story being told to a kid - it just depends on the viewer.
That is not untrue, but a story within a story just makes it much more difficult. You need more skill to pull of a story within a story instead of just telling the story itsself. And it needs to add something to the film/book/game.
Now, I don't have the biggest confidence in the writers. They have like 7 movies as writers under their belt, on IMDB they are all in the rating range of 5-6,9 and only one is above 7 (spiederman homecomeing, which has a total of 8 writer attachted to it).
So these guys write medicore scripts at best.

Why is a story in a story harder to write? Because first of all, you need to make the viewers suspend their disbelief twice. First for the frame-story (the D&D game group, that was proposed here) and then for the In-Game-Story again. You just now doubled your workload to make the people forget for two hours that they are watching a movie.
Second, it is broadly associated with two kinds of movies: Childrens Movies (a lot of christmas movies do that, because it is supposed to remind the children of the grandma/pa reading them a story in front of the fire place) and true stories (this is the true story, told by me, played by this famous actor)/Fake True Stories (Titanic). --> Because D&D will be a fantasy movie, a frame story (proposed as a D&D Game) can lead to a reception and impression, that this will be a kids movie and it will be harder to reach an adult audiance.
Third, which is connected to one: it decreases any kind of urgency and stakes in the Ingame-Story. It is way harder to suspend your disbelief, that this story is real, when you are told, that this story just takes place in the heads of the characters of the frame-story. And even worse, when ever the frame story is mentioned, the supension of disbelief is destroyed again and needs to be build up again. Thats why it is often used in Kids Stories - because kids can do that way easier than adults. Thats also why it is usally used in lighter stories.

For example, there is the Movie Sucker Punch, that tries to do that. The Frame Story is the one about a girl who is put into a mental asylum, that will be lobotimized in 5 days. The inner Story is about her and her friends fighting a way out of the asylum. And it just doesn't work well (6.0 on IMDB, 22%/46% on rotten tomatoes - at best medicore). Because, even so they try to make the fights in the inner story matter for the outside story, it is shot in a way, that you now that these fights are not real. And this unrealness of the inner story is strengthend by the frame-story.
If you compare that to Scott pilgrem vs. the world, which has a similiar structure for the story (magical fights to achieve goal x) - it works way better (7,5 on IMDB, Rotten Tomatos 82%/83%). And one of the reasons is, that it doesn't have a frame story. If scott pilgrem would be told by and old scott, who tells his children, how he met their mother, or if it would be about a scott, wo is in a mental asylum fantasizing about getting a girl (proably the reason he is in the asylum), it would be worse (or for the second Idea a Horror Story), because now it will be harder to suspend your disbelief for the inner story (and that is why How I met your mother is a comedy story, because Comedy stories work well with an unreliable narrator).
 

M_Natas

Explorer
I quite assure you that most of us are aware of that movie. A lot of us were alive when it came out. And we are also aware it was a giant bomb., so clearly you're in the minority if you think it was quite good. There was also two additional direct-to-DVD movies: Wrath of the Dragon God and Book of Vile Darkness.

Even if it WAS good, it's been 20 years. We can do another go at it and do better.
I'm pretty sure he means the Lord of the Rings and not that D&D Movie.
 

Undrave

Hero
Here's my hot take: the movie will cause a spike of new players. They'll wonder why the game is different from the movie. People here will complain about "the movie" effect and how those people are not TRUE fans of D&D.

As a Transformers fan... I'm hoping the movie doesn't result in a 'Wall of Bee' phenomenon for D&D...
 

OB1

Jedi Master
That's my point - Monty Python and the Holy Grail does not have a story. It's a series of sketches connected by a theme. But it's still an entertaining film.
Right, but that's my point, each sketch does have a story with conflict and stakes, or those stories wouldn't be entertaining and neither would the film.

Which brings me to @M_Natas assertion about frame stories. If each individual scene is constructed well, with clear dramatic purpose where the stakes are communicated to the audience, tension is built through conflict that rises and releases, and character motivations are shown in a way that allows the audience to empathize with the characters, the audience will engage with those scenes very quickly. Sucker Punch did those things poorly, Scott Pillgrem did them well. Princess Bride does the frame and main story very well. Both quickly and effectively communicate the stakes for their respective stories, making the audience care about what happens to those characters.

For a D&D at the table frame, the easiest story to tell there would probably be a new player to the game, who is perhaps skeptical of playing 'make believe with dice" and is shown through the course of the game getting more and more into it (perhaps at one point freaking out when there character is on the verge of death), and ending with an excitement to play the next session. Non players watching will likely relate to the new gal, while veterans can smile and enjoy watching someone discover the joy of the game for the first time.
 

M_Natas

Explorer
For a D&D at the table frame, the easiest story to tell there would probably be a new player to the game, who is perhaps skeptical of playing 'make believe with dice" and is shown through the course of the game getting more and more into it (perhaps at one point freaking out when there character is on the verge of death), and ending with an excitement to play the next session. Non players watching will likely relate to the new gal, while veterans can smile and enjoy watching someone discover the joy of the game for the first time.
That is a possiblity, but I really doubt that Hasbro/WotC would do it that way. Not for a 100+ million $ Blockbuster. Would it be a 20-50 Millionen mid-range/low-budget Indie-Movie (low budget for Hollywood) I could see that happening.
Of course I could be wrong and they surprise us all with a good script, that does such a frame story well.
 


Undrave

Hero
That is a possiblity, but I really doubt that Hasbro/WotC would do it that way. Not for a 100+ million $ Blockbuster. Would it be a 20-50 Millionen mid-range/low-budget Indie-Movie (low budget for Hollywood) I could see that happening.
Of course I could be wrong and they surprise us all with a good script, that does such a frame story well.

If there's more than a whiff of a players-at-the-table framing structure in this D&D movie, I will eat my hat. I consider it that unlikely.

It's too earnest for modern day cynical Hollywood.

It could work on TV though.
 








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