3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
dunces and dragons,
This review is from: Futurama - Bender's Game [DVD] (DVD)
more from futurama, the science fiction cartoon from the people who brought you the simpsons. Like the last two releases beast with a billion backs and bender's big score this is four episodes edited together into one long film of roughly eighty five minutes, with one long story running throughout.
this story is a lord of the rings parody heavily influenced by the role playing game dungeons and dragons. but more on that in a moment.
the disc contains the film itself, with direct scene access.
a language track in english
subtitles in english danish finnish norwegian and swedish
and the following extras, most of which are rather short, but there is some fun stuff amongst them:
a commentary from some of the cast and the production staff
a storyboard animatic: this is the first of the four parts in rough drawing form, complete with the soundtrack but with no music [and a certain guest voice actor clearly hadnt recorded their part at the time when this was done]. it's quite fascinating to watch if you wonder how the animation process is done
the futurama genetics lab: this allows you to merge pictures together of certain futurama characters and seeing what the resulting merges look like and would be called. it's quite fun.
a dungeons and dragons and futurama featurette: a short film with some of the writers reminiscing about their youth playing the role playing game dungeons and dragons. this is played with laughs with one participant not being interested in the game at all and reacting badly because of that, so it's quite an amusing watch
as is: how to draw futurama in 83 easy steps: a feature that shows you how to draw some of the characters. the artists involved do clown around a fair amount whilst doing the drawing, so even if you're hopeless at art you should get some fun from it
3d models with animator discussion: this shows the designs of some of the spaceships used in the feature. it's short but quite interesting.
there's a single two minute long deleted scene from the feature. it's quite good.
blooperama three is a short film of the voice cast at work, making a few mistakes along the way. if you wonder what they look like and how they work then this is good viewing.
into the wild green yonder is a trailer for the next futurama dvd. it's a collection of funny scenes but it gives no indication as to what the plot is.
but the best extra here is benders anti piracy warning, a short film that parodies the anti dvd piracy ads seen at the start of dvds. this stars bender, and since the advert says 'you wouldn't steal...' it doesnt quite work on him. this is incredibly funny and has to be watched.
for a couple of easter eggs watch this on a computer, and when on the third extras screen move the pointer around the screen right next to the list of extras, and click on two of the symbols there. the first will show more film of the voice cast at work, and the second is another dungeons and dragons feature.
the feature itself?
with fuel prices rising across the galaxy, planet express have to take the fight to mom, evil fuel tycoon, to get what they need. at the same time bender gets a little too hooked on playing dungeons and dragons and - this parodies 1980's newspaper scare stories about people hooked on the game and unable to tell fantasy from reality as a result - he goes rather crazy. that's the plot for the first two parts. the next two have the characters, as a result of what happens in parts one and two, thrust into another dimension where life is like the lord of the rings crossed with dungeons and dragons, and having to battle the evil ruler of that world.
the big question of course is: is it funny?
and with these films the answer seems to be a matter of subjective opinion. personally I didn't find it quite as funny as the beast with a billion backs, and the pacing is a little slow at times, but the gags do still come thick and fast enough to make it generally worthwhile.
In my opinion, at any rate. but that's what the dvd is like a whole. so why not make up your own mind? hopefully this review will guide you in doing such.
parents be advised that this is a twelve certificate, because there's the occasional bit of innuendo and some cartoon violence and gore