Reign Of Fire Review
“Dragons, Christian Bale And Matthew McConaughey What More Do You Want?”
July 19th, 2008
First the movie is by director Rob Bowman best known for his work on 89 episodes of The X-Files, 1995-2000 and also some work on The A-Team 19 episodes, 1985-1986. so this is his director debut.
The Screen play is written by Gregg Chabot,Kevin Peterka and Matt Greenberg. Matt Greenberg also wrote the screenplay for Halloween: H20: 20 Years Later and 1408.
Now on to the movie itself.
In this apocalypse tale, our demise comes in the form of a race of fire-breathing dragons that are awakened from their millennial-long state of A dormancy. It's briefly explained that these dragons hibernate for eons at a time. Just waiting for the earth to replenish itself before embarking on another mission of total bio-global destruction.
In fact they use the dragons has the explanation for the demise of the dinosaurs,it is probably best not to ask questions just how this species managed to completely avoid leaving any evidence of its existence in the fossil record.
In the beginning thanks to a deep-drilling construction project in downtown London in the year 2008, mind you this film came out in 2002. The first dragon is discovered by young lad named Quinn Abercrombie played by Ben Thornton. Who watches his mother Karen Abercromby played by Alice Krige get incinerated by the creatures fiery breath in order to save him.
12 years later in 2020. Quinn (Christian Bale) is the leader of a group of sole survivors medieval stone castle in Northumberland the colony survives only by living off food from man made farms. In hope of outlasting the dragons, wait until they die out again (as they presumably did several times before)or go into hibernation for lack of food themselves. Of course the farm is destroyed.
Now with their situation looking even more bleak Americans show up lead by `Dragon Slayer' Denton Van Zan played by Matthew McConaughey. Armed with a Chieftain tank and an Augusta A109 helicopter, which is piloted by Alex played by Izabella Scorupco. They arrive with a plan to destroy the dragons, this doesn't sit well with Quinn who has different ideas on how to ensure the survival of the human race. Quinn and Van Zan work together and eventually manage to kill the dragon that destroyed the crop but lose three of Van Zan's men in the process. Afterward a celebration ensues this is when Van Zan and Alex inform Quinn that all the dragons they have encountered are female.
So their theory is that they are like fish, the females would lay their eggs and the male would come and fertilize them. Leaving them to believe their is only one male dragon left. So Van Zan and his unit go to London to find the single male dragon, but encounter a roadblock, which the army is soon annihilated by the male dragon.
The male dragon follows their path back to the castle and attacks it, the inhabitants are pushed back into by hiding in an underground shelter designed to withstand the dragons heat. Quinn best friend Creedy (Gerard Butler) is killed saving people during the attack.
The defeated, Van Zan returns to the castle to rescue Quinn the other survivors from the castle's shelter. This is when Quinn tells Van Zan that they and Alex will hunt the male dragon in London. They use the helicopter to follow the River Thames to the city which they are unnoticed, its also noticed the dragons are beginning to starve and are resorting to cannibalism by eating each other.
Van Zan hatches a plan to fire a explosive from his crossbow into the male dragons mouth at the moment in inhales air to breath fire. Unfortunately not everything goes to plan and Van Zan fails to destroy the dragon, so he attacks with only his axe in a head-on leap. The dragon shallows our hero in midair. Which leaves Quinn and Alex to destroy the dragon by luring out into street level where Quinn is able to destroy it himself.
Theres a short scene afterwards of Quinn and Alex putting up a radio tower where they receive a transmission from survivors in France.
The special effects and art direction are quite impressive throughout. One knock I had was at times some of the dialogs is a little bland but seem functional. The movies music score was composed by Brad Wagner which was his debut and well known Ed Shearmur who was composed music for 55 films. I gave it 3.5 on acting only because some of the dialog, 3.5 for the story on the believability.
In the end if you like fantasy films with dragons you'll probably like this movie.
thanks for reading