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Great performance by Hugh Grant lights up Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves

Film review: Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves (12A) – seen at The Light Cinema, Wisbech

Starring: Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez, Justice Smith, Sophia Lillis, Hugh Grant and Chloe Coleman

Running time: 2hr 14 mins Directors: John Francis Daleyand Jonathan Goldstein

Hugh Grant in Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves
Hugh Grant in Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves

Many of us have grown old(er!) watching Hugh Grant movies and enjoyed his transformation from sex symbol to pantomime villain.

I counted after this film and I’ve actually seen 11 of his films and enjoyed every one of them tremendously, since starting with Four Weddings and a Funeral back in 1993.

And just as his off-screen persona has changed into that of a loveable, curmudgeonly old uncle, his film parts have seen him shine as the villain of the piece.

As double-crossing Forge Fitzwilliam, he has less screen time in this charming adventure than co-stars Pine (Edgin Darvis), Lillis (Doric), Rodriguez (Helga Kilgore), Smith (Simon Aumar) and Coleman (Kira Darvis), but certainly is the star turn.

The plot sees widowed Edgin and his best friend Helga team up with scorcerer Simon and druid Doric as they set out on an epic adventure to retrieve an ancient relic, extract revenge on former gang member Forge and rescue Edgin’s daughter Kira.

Along the way there’s some truly funny moments, especially a scene at an ancient burial site where the dead are woken to answer questions that could help lead our heroes to the relic. Some of the one-liners do fall short, however, but the plot is good enough and the acting solid enough to make this an enjoyable couple of hours.

I’d somehow not seen Rodriguez in anything since the epic series Lost more than a decade ago, and here she reprises that tough cookie role with aplomb. Pine does his best Harrison Ford impression as Edgin and Lillis, who I remembered from her superb performance as Beverly Marsh in Stephen King’s It in 2017 and 2019, has lost none of her talent.

Fourteen-year-old Coleman follows up her brief role in the recent space thriller 65 with a bigger part and is a star of the future.

But it’s Grant who has the real star quality and his scenes are the highlights of a thoroughly enjoyable film that, although not long lasting in the memory, is certainly worth a watch.

By Jeremy Ransome

Rating: 7/10

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