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REVIEW: 'Hercules' is no legend

Grade: D

staff writer

Published: Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Updated: Tuesday, January 14, 2014 01:01

The trailers for “The Legend of Hercules” never sold me, and even with an open mind, this movie was a disaster.


The film opens up to a multi-leveled battle where King Amphitryon (Scott Adkins) and his men are fighting to conquer Argos. After the battle, Amphitryon’s wife, Queen Alcmene (Roxanne McKee) prays to the Greek goddess Hera for peace and a stop to the king’s bloodlust. Hera speaks through a priestess, ultimately allowing Zeus to impregnate Alcmene for the good of the Greeks. Thus Hercules is born.


Twenty years later, Hercules (Kellan Lutz) still doesn’t know his true heritage and has fallen in love with Hebe (Gaia Weiss), princess of Crete. Unfortunately, his older brother Iphicles (Liam Garrigan) is extremely jealous, and with the help of the king, a wedding is arranged between Iphicles and Hebe. Hercules is sent on a suicidal mission to Egypt with Captain Sotiris (Liam McIntire) and a small army.


Eventually Hercules and Sotiris end up as slaves in games similar to gladiators of Rome. It is here where Hercules begins to realize his potential, and ultimately his ability to harness the power of Zeus. What happens next is the stuff of legend.


“The Legend of Hercules” never decides what it wants to be. It’s stylized, but not to the level of “300.” It makes an attempt at emotion, but never pulls on the heartstrings like “Gladiator.” I was never sure if the movie was supposed to be a real look of what could have been to make Hercules the legend he is today, as was done with “Troy,” or if this was to show what really happened, according to legend. Neither option was fully realized.


The actors seemed to be hand picked for the occasion, as a handful of the cast previously had roles in medieval style fantasy media. Lutz participated in “Immortals,” McKee was in “Game of Thrones” and McIntire starred in “Spartacus: War of the Damned.”


I can’t recommend this film, even to those who love the Hercules legend. In a month or two I’ll probably forget I ever saw the movie. Don’t waste your money.


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