When one sets out to make a film adaptation of a table-top game that has been hugely popular, there are two primary challenges. Firstly, this film absolutely needs to appeal to all those who have played and loved the game! After all, they have an idea of what to expect and would want something novel and something more out of it. The second challenge is that it also needs to be accepted by those who have zero idea about the game- they want to understand the characters and connect with them. To appeal to both the categories can prove to be a task, but directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein seem to have managed to achieve this fine balance. The film opens in a world where everything co-exists together- monsters and humans- and there is magic everywhere. Edgin, played by Chris Pine, has his own team consisting of Holga (Michelle Rodriguez), Forge (Hugh Grant) and the ‘sorcerer’ Simon (Justice Smith). They take up a new task from a wizard, Sofina, but Edgin and Holga end up frozen inside, and Forge gets the loot along with the guardianship of Edgin’s daughter, Kira (Chloe Coleman). That’s just the beginning of the story, and I wouldn’t divulge more- but Sofina seems to be a mysterious character from the very beginning and you know her intentions are not all good. Having grown up in a small town in West Bengal, I have been and am quite blissfully unaware of what this game was all about, but I could hear some people in the audience laugh at certain scenes which looked super normal to me. Probably, Easter Eggs were dropped. As a person who has zero knowledge of D&D, I can certainly say that the film was enjoyable throughout. The twists, the turns and how the storyline proceeded kept me hooked. With magical creatures and dragons and wizards, I found the film to be so Harry Potter-esque. In fact, the wizards even looked like the noseless ‘he-who-must-not-be-named’! Now, given Harry Potter has been one of those cult films that made the most impact, and impression, on 90s kids (especially me), I could not help but be reminded of it. Dungeons and Dragons also impresses with the character development of Edgin, Holga and Simon to some extent, but it really needed to focus a bit more on those of Forge and Sofina. The friendship between Edgin and Holga is refreshing to watch. The entire speech on failures is also something you will takeaway from the film after it is long over. The action sequences in this movie are delicious. Also, this is one of the films that actually has women taking the forefront. Be it Holga, who is much stronger, has better communication skills and can think of a plan B ahead of the ‘planner’ Edgin, or antagonist Sofina or the magical Dorris (played by Sophia Lillis) who takes charge and without whom the plan to get Kira back would have been an utter failure, the female characters are written so so well. Thoroughly enjoyable, well-made with great characters, good VFX and stunning action sequences- this film is one of the fantasy films that’s done right. If you are looking for an entertaining watch, Dungeons and Dragons is the one for you.