Mar
18
2014

The first “Dark Dungeons: The Movie” trailer.

Yes, they really are going to show a movie adaptation of Jack Chick’s famous comic tract attacking Dungeons & Dragons.

The movie site is here. Crowd-funded, and I was part of the crowd. So you can probably blame me for this, at least in part. And before you ask: everybody involved agreed that the best, most honest, and frankly ethical way to do this movie was to just take what was in the comic and put it up on the screen. That’s what producer JR Ralls promised Jack Chick, and I backed that project because of that promise. It would be far too easy to turn this project into a Flying Spaghetti Monster self-indulgence or some other silliness, and I remain confident that Ralls will be able to give us something that was reproduced as faithfully as possible, in both word and tone.  I will actually be disappointed if he does not.

Moe Lane

11 Comments

  • garfieldjl says:

    Moe, to be honest, my first thought was: Great, now I’ll have to deal with family members being worried about me cause I got introduced to playing Dungeons & Dragons…

    That being said, I do have to consider the fact that a lot of people ended up becoming almost like a cult while playing D&D. I’m guessing that was your reason for helping to fund the film, and I respect your opinion on the matter.

    I personally believe it wasn’t the game itself that caused the cult behavior, but the fact that some of the people playing had a screw loose. Some people just can’t seem to tell the difference between reality and fantasy. Some people are simply mentally unstable, and if one thing doesn’t trigger something, something else will.

    I haven’t read the comic you are referencing, but if you feel this needed to be supported, I respect you for your opinion. Hopefully it will stay close to the comic like they promised you, but you did what you felt was right at the time, and I respect you for it.

    My assessment based on the trailer:
    I think some of the people looked creepy to begin with, it also looked something like a stereotypical horror movie (or a parody of a horror movie). You have a creepy girl (seriously one of the people in that trailer looked like Morticia from the Addams Family), someone who sounds like a valley girl (whom happens to be a blonde (again stereotypical), a girl with glasses (not sure how she fits in, but the “uncool girl” box has apparently been checked off), at least one dumb jock (not to mention a lot of booze and possibly drugs thrown in, all of which is a disaster waiting to happen. Then at the end of the trailer you have a: “What could go wrong?” comment. I’m wondering if the game was the problem, or if too many of the players had psychological issues.

    • Luke says:

      Short explanation: Jack Chick published a number of illustrated tracts about how something relatively innocuous was EVIL, and if you participated in it, you would be DOOMED TO HELL.
      He seemed completely unfamiliar with the concepts of humor, irony, or sarcasm.
      The groups he criticized were not. They treated his tracts as an in-joke. I’ve met a number of Roman Catholics who will drop lines from “The Magic Cookie” at the drop of a hat. And any number of roleplayers will do the same with “Dark Dungeons”.

      • Moe_Lane says:

        Like the fact that nobody had EVER seen a gaming group that was half female, including the smoking’ hot GM.

        • garfieldjl says:

          If a girl I know actually lived in my area, the D&D group I’m in would actually have about 40% girls (50% in the DM wasn’t playing a character), and yes that girl that doesn’t live in my area is smoking hot (and I’ve met her in real life (long story)).

          The girl in my D&D group is playing a female samurai, the DM is playing a wizard that is supposedly the group’s employer (and tries to stay out of the fighting), then someone else plays a chaos gnome warmage, and my character is a strongheart halfling favored soul whom wields a greatsword.

          The DM has made the comment that if he ever wants to kill the party he’d have us face a blind, one-armed goblin, since we tend to slaughter the challenging monsters, and struggle with the weak ones.

          Funniest moment thus far is my character closing the door on a ogre and stepping to the side to take an attack of opportunity when it went through the door. Well the ogre burst out of the wall like the Kool-aid man, and then got taken down by the Samurai. So the DM gets ribbed occassionally that he should have had the Ogre saying: “Oh yeah!”

    • Moe_Lane says:

      I figure that it’s safe to say this in comments: this movie was conceived of by a hardcore gamer and was funded by hardcore gamers. The goal here – as I understand it – is not to take a cheap shot at the source material, because the source material really is awful enough that all you have to do is put it on the screen. It is impossible to properly describe how absurd the comic was.

      The trick here is that we are all trying to keep a perfectly straight face about it until the movie is out. 🙂

  • Aruges says:

    Heh, I do remember the early “D&D can lead to devil worship” hysteria. Mostly the result the overprotective mothers and cultural mistrust. Pretty standard moral panic, but it passed pretty quickly. Didn’t get into it much as a kid due me not being into fantasy settings much and an aversion to paperwork as a vector for fun. Computer RPGs solved that issue for me.

    Moe, ever try out DragonRaid, the Christian themed rpg? It didn’t have the deepest of systems, but it was an interesting attempt at religious edu-tainment.

    • Luke says:

      Hey, without that hysteria, many of us might never have encountered it.
      Hearing D&D denounced in the same breath as Ghostbusters and KISS was the best marketing tool RPGs have ever had.

  • bensdad00 says:

    I’ve never seen a trailer where half of it was a still-shot of the credit screen before…

    • garfieldjl says:

      Yeah, if they really couldn’t find anything to throw in for those 28 seconds (allowing for about 2 seconds for the last still shot to be seen), they should have cut off the trailer at 49 seconds.

      Really, it wasn’t very professional.

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