Mazes and Monsters Reviews

  • Christian C Super Reviewer
    Jul 19, 2017

    "Mazes & Monsters" is the "Reefer Madness" of the gamer set, hilariously mired in the early 1980's preposterous hysteria over the satanic influence of fantasy games like Dungeons & Dragons. Tom Hanks performs admirably well in an early role - although few others can claim that distinction. The script is weak (as one might expect for a fear-mongering art-screed). The lighting is poor. The direction is imitative of TV soaps like "Day of Our Lives" or "Ryan's Hope". The movie is on film stock of such poor quality, one might be excused for believing it was lifted from Soviet military surplus supplies circa 1978. The soundtrack is abysmally bad - I suspect also possibly acquired from Soviet overstock circa 1978. There's little to like in this hot-mess agitprop other than its delicious absurdity and an appreciation for Tom Hanks' evolving skill. Fun - but only if you're in the mood.

    "Mazes & Monsters" is the "Reefer Madness" of the gamer set, hilariously mired in the early 1980's preposterous hysteria over the satanic influence of fantasy games like Dungeons & Dragons. Tom Hanks performs admirably well in an early role - although few others can claim that distinction. The script is weak (as one might expect for a fear-mongering art-screed). The lighting is poor. The direction is imitative of TV soaps like "Day of Our Lives" or "Ryan's Hope". The movie is on film stock of such poor quality, one might be excused for believing it was lifted from Soviet military surplus supplies circa 1978. The soundtrack is abysmally bad - I suspect also possibly acquired from Soviet overstock circa 1978. There's little to like in this hot-mess agitprop other than its delicious absurdity and an appreciation for Tom Hanks' evolving skill. Fun - but only if you're in the mood.

  • Mar 25, 2016

    This movie was stupid and ignorant attempt to examine Dungeons and Dragons. The acting is bad - EVERYBODY stinks. This was done back in the day when people were convinced the playing role playing games would cause you to kill yourself. So, leave it to Hollywood liberals to exploit a stupid and baseless accusation (insert global warming here) for reasons not entirely clear. The one thing that is shown in the movie which is glossed over is that the fact that the players are already mentally unstable before playing the game. So, the game was only a catalyst for them to go nuts. Just about anything could have served as the trigger to send them over the edge. A REALLY BAD MOVIE.

    This movie was stupid and ignorant attempt to examine Dungeons and Dragons. The acting is bad - EVERYBODY stinks. This was done back in the day when people were convinced the playing role playing games would cause you to kill yourself. So, leave it to Hollywood liberals to exploit a stupid and baseless accusation (insert global warming here) for reasons not entirely clear. The one thing that is shown in the movie which is glossed over is that the fact that the players are already mentally unstable before playing the game. So, the game was only a catalyst for them to go nuts. Just about anything could have served as the trigger to send them over the edge. A REALLY BAD MOVIE.

  • Feb 17, 2016

    19%?! Blasphemy! This is a classic that should have gave Hanks an Emmy!

    19%?! Blasphemy! This is a classic that should have gave Hanks an Emmy!

  • Dec 29, 2015

    Worth a view if you're a fan of D&D as well as "so bad they're good" movies.

    Worth a view if you're a fan of D&D as well as "so bad they're good" movies.

  • Dec 09, 2015

    A silly tale stirring up FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt) about Dungeons & Dragons, apparently based on the story of James Dallas Egbert III's disappearance in the Michigan State University steam tunnels in 1979. The D&D version of his tale was concocted by the P.I. the parents hired, to protect their son's privacy (he was gay, suffered from depression, loneliness, parental pressure, and drug addiction, and was far too young for college), and is chronicled in the P.I.'s book "The Dungeon Master." Fortunately, William Dear, the P.I., sets the story straight, not that the other story doesn't persist as an urban legend. The movie's okay, as long as you understand that this low-budget sleeper is straight fantasy, with no intersection with reality.

    A silly tale stirring up FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt) about Dungeons & Dragons, apparently based on the story of James Dallas Egbert III's disappearance in the Michigan State University steam tunnels in 1979. The D&D version of his tale was concocted by the P.I. the parents hired, to protect their son's privacy (he was gay, suffered from depression, loneliness, parental pressure, and drug addiction, and was far too young for college), and is chronicled in the P.I.'s book "The Dungeon Master." Fortunately, William Dear, the P.I., sets the story straight, not that the other story doesn't persist as an urban legend. The movie's okay, as long as you understand that this low-budget sleeper is straight fantasy, with no intersection with reality.

  • Jul 04, 2015

    Rich-boy Tom Hanks fails out of college because of his nerd-obsession with a D&D-style game, Mazes and Monsters. Upon starting a new college, he is bullied into joining a group of the dorks in which to play the game. Once again, the game becomes his obsession. When they go LARP-spelunking he begins to confuse the game with reality. POlice get involved when he wants to fly from the top of a building. And for the rest of his life, he remains in his fantasy-land (in reality he's now half-retard living with his folks).

    Rich-boy Tom Hanks fails out of college because of his nerd-obsession with a D&D-style game, Mazes and Monsters. Upon starting a new college, he is bullied into joining a group of the dorks in which to play the game. Once again, the game becomes his obsession. When they go LARP-spelunking he begins to confuse the game with reality. POlice get involved when he wants to fly from the top of a building. And for the rest of his life, he remains in his fantasy-land (in reality he's now half-retard living with his folks).

  • Feb 11, 2015

    Otm Shank. The music was very inappropriate. Also, I am Titanius Anglesmith: Fancyman of Cornwood.

    Otm Shank. The music was very inappropriate. Also, I am Titanius Anglesmith: Fancyman of Cornwood.

  • Jul 03, 2014

    This is pretty typical for a TV movie of this period. It's a completely overrought look at the problem of the week .... in this case, the dangerous world of fantasy role playing. It seems that folks who play these games have trouble distinguishing fantasy from reality ... or at least Tom Hanks does. He suffers from some completely unexplained neurosis that leads him to think he's his RPG character and to treck off to New York and to stab muggers. Hanks was nearing the end of his run on "Bosom Buddies" and this plays like an attempt to get himself taken more seriously ... he cries a lot and acts the hell out of his scenes. The film also stars Chris Makepeace, desperately trying to extend "Meatballs" and "My Bodyguard" into a real career, and Wendy Crewson, who nobody has heard of, but she's from Winnipeg so hats off to Crewson.

    This is pretty typical for a TV movie of this period. It's a completely overrought look at the problem of the week .... in this case, the dangerous world of fantasy role playing. It seems that folks who play these games have trouble distinguishing fantasy from reality ... or at least Tom Hanks does. He suffers from some completely unexplained neurosis that leads him to think he's his RPG character and to treck off to New York and to stab muggers. Hanks was nearing the end of his run on "Bosom Buddies" and this plays like an attempt to get himself taken more seriously ... he cries a lot and acts the hell out of his scenes. The film also stars Chris Makepeace, desperately trying to extend "Meatballs" and "My Bodyguard" into a real career, and Wendy Crewson, who nobody has heard of, but she's from Winnipeg so hats off to Crewson.

  • Jul 01, 2014

    A full-on smear campaign about the evils of Dungeons and Dragons, from the height of the parental outcry against the game. Funny and sad in the same context as Reefer Madness, it's akin to a long after-school special in the blunt, inelegant way it hammers away at its only point. An extremely young Tom Hanks, freshly released from his run on Bosom Buddies, cut his teeth on more serious material in this leading role. As the poor sap who nosedives into deep mental illness as a direct result of the game, his part is madly corny and he clearly had some growing pains to work through before becoming the dramatic juggernaut we'd all come to know a decade later. Badly produced, terribly acted, smug and boring and predictable to the final reveal, it's a living stereotype, the very essence of a bad made-for-TV movie.

    A full-on smear campaign about the evils of Dungeons and Dragons, from the height of the parental outcry against the game. Funny and sad in the same context as Reefer Madness, it's akin to a long after-school special in the blunt, inelegant way it hammers away at its only point. An extremely young Tom Hanks, freshly released from his run on Bosom Buddies, cut his teeth on more serious material in this leading role. As the poor sap who nosedives into deep mental illness as a direct result of the game, his part is madly corny and he clearly had some growing pains to work through before becoming the dramatic juggernaut we'd all come to know a decade later. Badly produced, terribly acted, smug and boring and predictable to the final reveal, it's a living stereotype, the very essence of a bad made-for-TV movie.

  • May 07, 2014

    Has interest value if you want to see Tom Hanks in his early years as an actor, but it's very much television movie standard.

    Has interest value if you want to see Tom Hanks in his early years as an actor, but it's very much television movie standard.