Warcraft Movie Review Roundup

Warcraft comes out on June 10.

238 Comments

Ahead of the film's release this week, reviews for Legendary's upcoming Warcraft movie have shown up online--and not everyone enjoyed it.

We've collected excerpts from some of the reviews here and will continue to update this post as new ones come online.

Warcraft was directed by Duncan Jones (Moon, Source Code), who previously said he has plans for two further films. When the movie comes out in the US, we'll have a better idea of if the critical reviews have any impact on box office performance.

The film stars Travis Fimmel, Paula Patton, Ben Foster, Dominic Cooper, Robert Kazinsky, and Toby Kebbell. It hits theaters on June 10.

Head to GameSpot sister site Metacritic for a further breakdown of Warcraft's critical reception.

It's not the first video game movie this year and it won't be the last. Animated movies based on Ratchet & Clank and Angry Birds came out earlier this year, while Assassin's Creed opens in December.

  • Film: Warcraft
  • Distributor: Universal
  • Release Date: June 10
  • Rating: PG-13

GameSpot

"Warcraft is crafted for the enjoyment of its video game fans. The Warcraft universe serves as more than just tacked-on references in this fantasy film, it is the heart of its story, characters, and cinematic style. It is unfortunate that despite its faithful recreation of the game, several solid weaknesses prevent it from being a well-rounded film. Still, there are plenty of moments for Warcraft fans to geek out over. And if the ending is anything to go by, there may be many more of these to come, for better or worse." -- Zorine Te [Full review]

CNET

"Warcraft lacks that special something. The lore from the franchise is so rich, brought to life in the games by such fine narrative detailing, that it's impossible to look at the film as anything other than a letdown." -- Aloysius Low [Full review]

Kotaku

"Rather than tapping into the goofy core that makes a game like World of Warcraft interesting, the Warcraft movie aims for grittiness, missing the mark quite a bit. It just doesn't work. The lore is too campy. This is a world where a mage's most popular spell transforms his enemies into sheep, yet Warcraft acts as if it's a green-screen version of Game of Thrones. At my theater, the biggest laughs came not from the occasional bouts of slapstick comedy but from the miserable archmages of Dalaran, whose CGI-enhanced eyes look especially absurd when you're supposed to take them seriously." -- Jason Schreier [Full review]

The Wrap

"Critics throw the term 'soulless corporate filmmaking' around with abandon, but movies like Warcraft really manage to redefine the term. A film adaptation of the hugely popular MMORPG (that’s Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) World of Warcraft, this latest video game adaptation ranks near the bottom of the deadly genre. Imagine Battlefield Earth without the verve, or the unintentional comedy, and you've got Warcraft." -- Alonso Duralde [Full review]

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Variety

"Hollywood's habit of turning hit video games into unwatchable movies continues unabated. The epic battle at the center of Warcraft isn't the clash between humans and orcs. That's just what takes up roughly two hours of screen time. The true conflict comes from filmmakers trying to tell a story with soul and struggling against the inherent ridiculousness of the commodity they're working with. It shouldn't take a mage to foresee that this pricey and preposterous adaptation of an online gaming phenomenon was preordained for artistic mediocrity." -- Geoff Berkshire [Full review]

The Hollywood Reporter

"If you haven’t already invested in the self-serious mythology, it can feel borderline camp, if not downright dull--or both, as when an uncredited Glenn Close intones platitudes from on high about darkness and light. Yet there’s no question that it’s a breakthrough in both storytelling and artistry for features based on video games. And compared with another medieval-ish tale, the soporific Hobbit trilogy, this international production is a fleet and nimble ride, likely to conquer overseas box offices and make a solid stand stateside." -- Sheri Linden [Full review]

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50cratez

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Duncan shoulda just play warcraft one and tides of darkness and beyond the dark portal. Its obvious he doesnt know anything about the game, as can clearly be seen by the trailer, looks like its all over the place. The trailer looks like ass and very boring.

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CrouchingWeasel

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@50cratez:

Your first mistake is thinking that the director has any influence over what the studio does with the "trailer"

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50cratez

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@CrouchingWeasel: ive made no mistake. The movie sucked the majority of the peopel that saw it thought it sucked. Not gonna waste my money on this garbage. U made the mistake of praising trash movie. To each his own

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YummyMango

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I normally don't trust critic reviews. I don't know but I always feel that while reviewing a movie, critics just go overboard and come up with a lot of random BS crap and nit pick on things. There are numerous movies that critics downright point out to be a disaster and I found them entertaining. What I feel is that not every movie is aimed at winning Oscars, and a movie can be very entertaining even if it doesn't have the best of acting and other stuff. But thats just me.

Well I am going to keep an open mind and still watch the movie so reviews don't bother me.

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Redsyrup

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I'd normally trust the critics but this is Duncan 'Moon' Jones we're talking about here. Hard to believe this could be anything less than spectacular.

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nurnberg

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This looks as bad as "In the name of the king".

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Mogan

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@nurnberg: But is it as bad as In The Name Of The King Two?

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Xevac

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I really do not understand how critics can be so far from eachother. In norway it gets a good score from the trusted sites, one gave it 4/6 and another, one of norways biggest papers gave it a 5/6, Also reviews around europe gives it positive scores. i mean how can you go from 1/10 like the idiot on the wrap to scores like 4 or 5/6. i can tell you why, because it is a PERSONAL OPINION wich might be bad for a uptight 50 year old guy, but not for a younger audience?

But hey, i have NEVER cared about critics anyway, because i have seen my share of 1 and 2s of movies that i had a really really good time with. Anyway some of those early reviews have some really stupid journalism tho. i mean "rather watch mario brothers than this"

You know sites like that are trolling for hits, specially since they add them first also.

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darksouls

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Edited By darksouls

R.I.P.

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Hamartia208

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Edited By Hamartia208

I can't trust main stream reviewers in full on a movie like this. If they can't get the game the movie is based off of right, how in the world are they going to understand the vision of the project. I imagine some "became experts" by playing wow for a month or something lol.

The movie could easily suck majorly. I remember my shame and disappointment when I went and saw Avatar the Last Airbender in theatres. BUT bottom of the barrel? I can't picture it getting worse than the blatant mispronunciation of the main character's name a la airbender or the unintentional slapstick attempt a la the DB movie. I have hope. At least it breaks the monotonous cycle of super hero action movies that get shoved down our throats. (I like those, but enough is enough).

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Zerabp

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Edited By Zerabp

@hamartia208: It wasn't a DBZ movie it was a Dragonball movie and it was actually quite true to the feel of the animated series and manga that DBZ is a sequel to. The reason it was called "Evolution" is because it was a new take on the original. Akira Toriyama himself actually helped write the script.

Basically you just did exactly what you are getting on the critics for.

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Hamartia208

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@Zerabp: I know it was DB. It was nonetheless a terrible movie.

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Zerabp

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@hamartia208: We'll just have to disagree. It may have been a cheesefest but it was still a fun cheesefest. Only laughless people think it's a terrible movie.

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Hamartia208

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@Zerabp: FINE I CONCEDE. I enjoyed watching it, but I would never watch it again.

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Snowx1

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You know, after looking at some of the brief summaries of some of these reviews it really makes me wonder if they got mixed up and thought that the movie was supposed to be based on World of Warcraft and not the original Warcraft RTS.

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Thanatos2k

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Edited By Thanatos2k

@Snowx1: Does it REALLY matter if the storytelling and characters still suck?

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WadeDMcGinnis

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@Snowx1: You know you have a point. Tonally the two series are different. While World of Warcraft takes the events of the RTS, it had no qualms with being goofy.

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RamstainAU

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@wadedmcginnis: Yeah but to an extent that's the direction the warcraft franchise has taken thanks to WoW. Even if the RTS was darker and grittier, Warcraft in it's current form is very different.

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Hurvl

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Edited By Hurvl

X-Men: Apocalypse got really bad reviews compared to the other X-Men movies, but was as good as any of them and I think Warcraft looks fun in a hammy, Blizzard-bombastic kind of way. I didn't expect this amount of bad reviews, but that doesn't matter, since I've decided that it will be fun to watch.

2 • 
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The-unDyIng

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@Hurvl: Good call :), i personally think a lot of critics suck, they can so easily judge and make criticisms about a movie but cannot even criticize what is more then an over stated opinion on there own behalf a lot of the time. Not too say either critic is right or wrong, i suppose nobody will truly know with the Warcraft movie until everyone sees it. I honestly think though that some people base there reviews 500% on there own opinions, which a lot of the time is not fair.

It is better to be a bit more objective and try to point out why other people would like a given movie, and write a review like that.

Ahhh who am i kidding, i will go back under my rock of pipe dreams and keep dreaming people while start making more sense.

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Hurvl

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@The-unDyIng: Reviews are nothing else but your own opinion, it's hard to be objective when all you've got is your personal experience. You can try to explain why the movie is this or that in a reasonable and nuanced way, but you'll never be free of your own opinions.

A lot of critics seem to review movies the same way, i.e. a silly movie that's just made for laughs is judged on the same criteria as a political thriller with an important message - and guess which one the critics will favor?

I've enjoyed many movies simply because they're either fun or so stupid that they become fun. People who like Warcraft will probably the movie if it has the same tone, the same ridiculous/epic mix as Blizzard's cinematic game trailers.

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Smosh150

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Why is WoW considered the baseline lore for Warcraft? Anyway well this is just another video game movie that could never break the cycle, sucks but that be how it is.

2 • 
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Stiler

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Wow, all these reviews bashing it for not being "whimsical" or something like the WoW video game. Do they not bloody understand it's NOT BASEAD ON WOW but rather based on the RTS games that came before it?

Also like the CGI trailers, Blizzard almost never has comedy in their CGI trailers and go straight for a more realistic/gritty approach.

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tsunami2311

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Is anyone even remotely shocked? then we have AC movie coming and live action movie of the anime ghost in the shell... I see no promise of a good movie coming out games or animes. any remeber the horrible bad MK movies or the horrible bad the everyone that was involved with should be ashamed Dragon ball live action movie.

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Zerabp

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@tsunami2311: So Akira Toriyama the writer and artist of the manga should be ashamed of himself for helping write a different take on his characters?

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BaconTopHat45

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@Zerabp: Dude what are you talking about? Akira had almost no involvement in the movie. In fact he commented on it and said he seen the script, thought it was bland and gave them suggestions to improve it and they rejected them. Also the director actually came out and apologized for it saying he knew it was crap before it came out and released it anyways as a cash grab.

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maltnut

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I just watched that trailer, and it's just so very, very generic. I don't see anything that really pops and catches my interest, there's no story hook in there. They're relying solely on brand recognition.

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tajirinere

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its like watching a body builder bitch slap a kid and the kid is trying to fight back

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Mogan

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@tajirinere: And also, the kid is CG, so the body builder is trying to act like he's beating up something that isn't there, and the kid doesn't look real.

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wexorian

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Another cash grab GAME movie hit's theathers, i'm still gonna go and watch it but those reviews were expectable, how hell is hard to make FANTASTIC movie with so much lore and characters like warcraft universe have it i DON"T GET IT....

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Thanatos2k

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@wexorian: Because the universe and lore really isn't as interesting as most fans think it is.

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Rolento25

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@Thanatos2k: Guess you never read the books.

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Thanatos2k

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Edited By Thanatos2k

@rolento25: What matters is the games, and in this case - the movie.

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Rolento25

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@Thanatos2k: You must of been too young for the old Warcraft games. This isn't WoW.

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Thanatos2k

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Edited By Thanatos2k

@rolento25: Might as well be. Story in Warcraft 1 (the actual game) was feeble. When the characters in this movie are splashed across multiple games including World of Warcraft and Hearthstone you can't really claim it's not based on them.

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theteaface

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Haha, liked The Wrap review! Redefining soulless corporate film making - genius

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Thanatos2k

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@theteaface: My personal favorite is this one:

http://www.indiewire.com/2016/06/warcraft-review-duncan-jones-1201683601/

“Warcraft” is finally here, and not only does it fail to bridge the gap between movies and video games, it self-immolates and swan-dives into the void

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Peekaboobs

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almost all these tons of 5 reviewers have bashed it because it is nothing like WoW (world of warcraft) ..but isn't this movie BASED ON THE ORIGINAL WARCRAFT!!!???? NOT WoW ..geez.

this is some sad state of "journalism" these days and needs to be done away with..

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Mogan

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@peekaboobs: I don't think any of that heat up there had to do with the movie being based more on the old RTS games than WoW. This just sounds like a bad movie.

Shocker. : \

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Peekaboobs

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@Mogan: you must of just skipped to the comments then , because the contents in this "article" mention the reviews ripping in part due to it not being anything like WoW .. when, this movie is not an adaptation of WoW , rather the original Warcraft.. but you didn't bother reading that, you just assumed it is a failure because of a few miss-informed "reviewers"..

tisk tisk , get a hold of yourself man..

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RamstainAU

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@peekaboobs: More like the movie is a confused mix of the grittier rts and the goofy WoW, but doesn't get it right at all.

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Avantyr

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@peekaboobs: *must have

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Mogan

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Edited By Mogan  Moderator

@peekaboobs: No, I read the review quotes. None of them say the movie is bad because it isn't like WoW, they all just say it's bad. And I think it's a bad movie because it looks like ass. Soulless, uninspired ass.

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Peekaboobs

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Edited By Peekaboobs

@Mogan: yea you didn't read them at all.. because it clearly says in almost all of those quotes that it's an adaptation of WoW and when you have false information like that , your "review" automatically becomes invalid..but be in in denial all you want if it makes you feel better about hating the film even though you haven't seen it.

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Mogan

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@peekaboobs: You haven't seen it either, but it's sitting on a hot 32 metacritic and 33 on the tomatometer, and you're here trying to think up reasons why the reviews are wrong. I don't think I'm the one in denial. : p

And again, none of those quotes up there say Warcraft is bad because it's not like WoW, which is the reason you said they were "invalid" in the first place.

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MXVIII

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Was Warcraft an adaptation of the MMO, or the original RTS. Because the original RTS was actually super dark, well until they got to Warcraft III. I dunno, I feel like because everyone only really knows the MMO, a good adaptation of the lore into film will be impossible. Blizzard destroyed the legitimacy of its own world imo.

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Iconoclysm

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@MXVIII: It's an adaptation of Orcs & Humans, and not a single reviewer understands that...which leaves me not trusting anything at all.

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blackamerica

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@IcIconoc. You just want to justify this movie be made. It should have never been made.

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Spartan-1657

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Edited By Spartan-1657

Not really into movies so much anymore but damn I'm sure noticing a trend here. These movie critics just slam stuff so hard all the time, it's like they get off on it lately. Its like they all get together and jump on a hate bandwagon.

One even goes on to say that Warcraft is the "bottom of the barrel" of video game movies? Really? I find that hard to believe. I just can't see Blizzard, who's known for quality, to allow a big-budget movie of their biggest franchise to just tank like this.

Not saying it's a good movie, since I haven't seen it.... But sometimes it's like these critics just go way overboard on their comments and claims and just try to hate on stuff.

2 • 
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50cratez

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Edited By 50cratez

@Spartan-1657: blizzard aint what it used to be in the 90s, they are now under activision, a money grabbing machine!

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The-unDyIng

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@Spartan-1657: These kinds of critics cant go WAY overboard to begin with.... when they were so far down in deep feces filled water that everything they spew out in there supremely over stated personal opinion, is no better then a hemorrhage of the brain. If you like Warcraft give it a chance. even if you don't like it watch it yourself. or wait till people you know that share the same views as you watch it.

Do not go off of what these supposed critics say, they are full of hot air and laughing gas. It is hard to find an honest unbiased opinion from a lot of people these days, personal taste aside.

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Bread_or_Decide

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@Spartan-1657: They crapped on some real good flicks. Fight Club. Chronicles of Riddick. American Ultra. The films they decide to herald can be questionable. Okay, civil war is good, it aint 90% fresh good.

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