Hercules (2014) – DVD Review 3.5/5 stars

Product Details3.5 Stars

It wasn’t great, but it was fun.  It delivered exactly what you think it will based on the commercials.  If you’re expecting more than a light hearted sword and sandal action flick, go read a book on mythology.  If you want a nice bit of entertainment watch the film.  It is not unfaithful to the Hercules myths, but it is not a verbatim story.  Liberties are taken, but they are explained fairly well.

Hercules, the legendary strongman; the Son of Zeus and a mortal woman; the demigod is famous for his twelve labours that earned him back the good favour of the Gods of Mount Olympus after Hera caused him the madness in which he killed his wife and children.  He has been the subject of movies, comic books, television shows, and cartoons for years, and will be for many years to come.  This time out Hercules (Dwayne Johnson, aka The Rock) has completed his labours (or has he?) and is acting as a mercenary.  With his friends Amphiaraus (Ian McShane), Autolycus (Rufus Sewell), Tydeus (Aksel Hennie), Atalanta (Ingrid Bolsø Berdal) and his nephew Iolaus (Reece Ritchie), Hercules is hired by the daughter of Lord Cotys (John Hurt) to help defend his kingdom from a rival.  Training Cotys’ army and leading them into battle, Hercules is unbeatable and truly the hero that Thrace needs, but is everything as it seems in the Kingdom?

Great action, fun battle scenes, this film was quite enjoyable to watch.  The Rock Dwayne Johnson is excellent as Hercules, and the part fits him perfectly.  The man oozes charisma into every role he takes, and you can see that he was having a lot of fun with this part.  But aside from a rock solid performance from Johnson, what made this film gel was the supporting cast.  Giving Hercules an “entourage” and explaining that they are there to “bring the myth to life” by protecting and helping Hercules in his battles made sense, and it helped give the film a kind of Magnificent Seven feeling (they even had a guy who threw knives!).  They help lighten the mood of the entire film and I appreciated that.  Ian McShane is one of my favourite actors so it was great to see him in the movie. Yes, things were a little predictable, but I wasn’t expecting Homer (or Shakespeare). Another reviewer said this was essentially a live action Saturday morning cartoon, as it was very formulaic and quite family friendly for the subject matter that it was. I suppose I have to agree, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Having the typical characters like the “cranky old guy”, the “girl who can hang with the guys”, the “quiet, crazy guy”, the “sarcastic guy” and the “young warrior trying to prove himself” can be a problem if the movie doesn’t embrace them properly. I think Hercules did, and played them as strengths.

Bottom Line: Based on Hercules: The Thracian Wars by Radical Comics, it wasn’t epic or mythic, but it was still quite fun.


Posted on 14-11-16, in 3.5 Star, Movie Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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