Los Angeles Times - 12/08/2000
"...Some of the effects are quite interesting..."
In the mystical land of Izmer, a class of Mages rule by means of magic and otherworldly powers. One Mage, Profion (Jeremy Irons), wants to rule the land by himself and hopes to topple the young and inexperienced Empress Savina (Thora Birch) by acquiring her mystical scepter--the key to controlling the Gold Dragons. To to counter Profion's plans, a young mage named Marina has to find the legendary Rod of Savrille--they key to controlling the Red Dragons. Marina teams up with a rowdy dwarf, an elf, and a pair of thieves named Ridley (Justin Whalin) and Snails (Marlon Wayans). But even with the help of this team, Marina's path to the Rod of Savrille is a rocky one laden with booby traps, puzzles, and Damodar--Profion's henchman, who threatens death at every turn. Nonetheless, the Empress and her followers are determined to face the odds to prevent the evil Profion from triumphing. The popular role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons comes to life in this film with cutting edge special effects, culminating in an awe-inspiring battle between two hordes of dragons over a huge, elaborate, Gothic city.
Director/ producer Courtney Solomon worked for ten years to bring DUNGEONS & DRAGONS to the big screen. At the age of 21 he optioned the film rights and worked on developing a screenplay until he attracted the interest of executive producer Joel Silver, who joined the project after seeing several minutes of test footage. After scouting out a number of experienced directors, Solomon decided to direct the film himself.
Actress Thora Birch dreaded filming her scenes with Jeremy Irons, because of the British star's intensity. By the end of filming, she admitted that working opposite Irons made her a better actress.
Stars Marlon Wayans and Lee Arenberg both grew up playing Dungeons & Dragons and were very enthusiastic to join the film.
Dave Arneson, co-creator of the original Dungeons & Dragons game, and Grant Boucher, long-time D&D contributor, make cameo appearances in the film.