The Orcs have been slowly moving closer to loosing their home because of Fel Magic. Their only choice is to find a new home on the world of Azeroth and the horde of Orcs has made them a formidable force. Gul’dan has been using the Fel to make the horde stronger but at a price. To get to to Azeroth, Gul’dan opens a portal but Chief Durotan and his people are Leary about using this magic in such a way. The Orcs find that the only problem is that Azeroth is home to King Wrynn and his people in Stormwind. They aren’t leaving without a fight and that’s exactly what the Orcs are bringing to the table.
Warcraft is directed by Duncan Jones and based on the video game that is a world-wide phenomenon WORLD OF WARCARAFT by Blizzard Entertainment. Jones is best known for his sci-fi breakout film MOON and has a grasp of putting compelling characters on screen. He also knows how he wants the visual effects to look on the screen. With his drive for realistic CG effects and Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) helping, they have created a film where you begin to forget that you’re watching these massive characters that aren’t really there. As far as the acting goes, Travis Fimmel plays something close to his character in the series VIKINGS. He is perfect for the role with the savagery needed for a film like this.
I have played the WORLD OF WARCRAFT game before and so I have some basic knowledge about the world and the characters. From what I can tell, the film does justice to the game, especially in the magic wielders and the orcs. Also, the way the story is being told doesn’t make the assumption that you are a fan of the game. The plot is laid out for you and it is easy to follow.
Travis Fimmel – Sir Anduin Lothar
Paula Patton – Garona Halforcen
Ben Foster – Mediv
Dominic Cooper – King Llane Wrynn
Toby Kebbell – Durotan
Ben Schnetzer – Khadgar
Robert Kazinsky – Orgrim Doomhammer
Clancy Brown – Blackhand
Daniel Wu – Gul’dan
Ruth Negga – Lady Taria Wrynn
The film is a 1080p AVC presentation.
The visuals in this film are stunning and it is loaded with CGI. A lot of the detailing is shared in both the foreground and the background for a clear picture on the screen. The CG artists did a phenomenal job keeping the elements of the visual effects looking superb and the Orcs are on point. The skin textures and intricate movements push further than a lot of the effects out there. The coloring is alive and vibrant with the brilliant green and blue in the energy/magic as well as the lushness of the settings. This is a high mark for Universal and shows that standard Blu-ray is not a format with a foot out the door.
The main audio track is a Dolby Atmos mix but defaults to Dolby TrueHD 7.1 mix.
When you have a film like this that relies on unknown sound effects for the characters, magic, and creatures, you find that the filmmakers have complete freedom to do whatever they want. The effects are separate and do a great job of filling the theater with the life of this fantasy world. There are plenty of crispy highs and rich lows that aren’t overpowering but come through cleanly with the many layers of the mix. The score has a thunderous feel to it with the pounding drums and medieval chanting.
-The World of Warcraft on Film: This is a 6-part featurette about the making of the film.
The World of Talent
The World of VFX
Outfitting a World
The World of Mo-Cap
The World of Stunts
-The Fandom of Warcraft: This is a clip of some the fans who love this franchise.
-Warcraft – Bonds of Brotherhood Motion Comic: This is a motion comic of Warcraft. It run close to an hour long.
-Warcraft: The Madame Tussauds Experience
-ILM: Behind the Magic of Warcraft: This extra shows how some of the visual effects were put to screen.
-Warcraft Teaser – 2013
2-disc set w/1 Blu-ray and 1 DVD
1080p AVC MPEG-4
Aspect ratio: 2.40:1
English Dolby Atmos
English Dolby TrueHD 7.1
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
French Dolby Digital 5.1
WARCRAFT is a film that has remained true to the source material and completely brings the franchise to the screen in a big way. I’ll admit that the effects have surpassed my expectations and with ILM on the job, you wouldn’t expect anything less. The Blu-ray has an excellent video transfer and a very good sound mix. The Atmos mix might be a bit more refined but I don’t have that setup…yet. The extras are plentiful and have enough for any fan to learn about how the film connects with the franchise. Overall, I would recommend checking out this release.