The “So what?” factor is off the scale in this ho-hum Rings wannabe, an epic fantasy by numbers that’s more dungeons than dragons. And with only one of the latter to be found in Stefen Fangmeier’s empty spectacle, Fox will have its work cut out spinning this mooted saga based on Christopher Paolini’s kid-friendly Inheritance cycle out to requisite box set length.
Said beastie – body by pixels, voice by Rachel Weisz – remains the only draw in this tale of a humble farmboy (ruddy newcomer Ed Speleers) chosen to be the ‘dragon rider’ destined to bring an end to John Malkovich’s evil tyranny. Alas, it’s not on screen enough to compensate for Robert Carlyle and Jeremy Irons’ cured-ham turns and dialogue that couldn’t be clunkier if it tried. “I suffer without my stone!” minces Malko from behind what looks suspiciously like a flea collar. “Do not prolong my suffering!” Fox, take note.