Re: Fantasy: Dragons and Movies

This is a replay of the guest blogging I did at Raven Corinn Carluk’s website last week, for those of you who missed it.

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As an introduction, I am the author of fantasy, paranormal and futuristic romance stories. I choose to spend hours in magical worlds with supernatural beings, suspending disbelief instead of dealing with reality.

One of my great loves – dragons. Perhaps more than any other mystical being they fascinate me. My post on April 10thdetailed one of my latest favorites, The Great Dragon from the SyFy television series Merlin. While I love The Great Dragon, in my opinion, dragons still have the most impact on the big screen. Several movies stick with me for good depictions of these magical creatures who have made their mark in lore around the world. Be warned, I tend to be prejudiced in my love of dragons. I don’t mind an evil dragon, but there better be an equally formidable dragon of conscience hot on his or her tail.

Doesn’t this picture inspire stories?  

My basis for dragon assessment: large framed dragon stature, powerful, omniscient (for a creature that lives for eons this seems like a given), intelligent, scales (love beautiful scales), incredible wings, huge fire potential, ownership of a large horde, magical abilities and finally a good sense of humor (the millennia are long without humor).

My nomination for humorous characterization and a compelling dragon voice, Sean Connery as the voice of Draco from Dragon Heart. Granted the movie was a little hokey. He looked a bit much like a Stegosaurus to me, with the series of horns, but his sense of humor was wonderful and the deep, brusque voice—yes, definitely dragon quality. And fire, there was plenty of fire.

For many writers, the visualization of a scene, the characters and the action all happen in our heads like a movie screen. When I write, that scene translates to words and actions complete with the emotional impact of the images. If the result is intriguing enough, readers are sucked into the story without pausing to consider reality. For fantasy, that requires larger than life delivery of world building elements – yes, we’re taking, scales, claws and wings.

An interesting side spin on dragon anthropology is the evolution of dragon riders. For an interesting visual of a dragon rider battle I nominate, Dungeons & Dragons. The movie didn’t garner great interest or good reviews, given the number of Dungeons & Dragons RPG (role playing game) fans. The movie understandably failed to meet their expectations, though the characters were entertaining and the plot moved quickly. In my experience few movies ever meet the expectation set by a good book or, in this case, a great game.

Not being a D&D player myself, and focusing solely on dragons here, I very much enjoyed parts of this movie. The battle of the two dragon sects at the end of the movie, the good side led by dragon rider Empress Savina, is full of color and glory. Again, I’m not basing this on the game, and, given it was a 2000 movie, the graphics are not as powerful as those in movies today. But I still remember images of Savina and her dragons fighting against the legion threatening her capital.

As a writer I want to create those images on paper. My own story, Return of the Legacy: The Portals of Destiny series incorporates dragon riders. This story is first of several dealing with the Makir, Guardians of the magical portals between worlds. The dragon riders exist in the world of Tir Thar and, while not prominent in this story, they do play a critical role and appear in several other stories in the series. Because of my love of dragons, I felt the riders and their soul bond with their dragons deserved their own story. The Dragon Rider’s Princess is targeted as a kindle ebook release in June 2011.

I would love for people to comment back, to share their favorite dragons, features, and movies or TV shows which cast great dragons – and if you don’t like my selections all I ask is that you nominate one of your own.

KH LeMoyne

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About KH LeMoyne

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