The Legend of Hercules
Release Date: January 10, 2013
Cast: Kellan Lutz, Gaia Weiss, Scott Adkins, Roxanne McKee, Liam Garrigan, Liam McInteyre, Rade Serbedzija
Director: Renny Harlin
Studio: Millenium Films
Distributor: Summit Entertainment
Genre(s): Action, Adventure, Mythological
My expectations going into this movie were quite low. Usually when I have low expectations, I become pleasantly surprised; that is not the case with The Legend of Hercules. If you have seen Clash of the Titans and Immortals, then you’ve seen the better ones. I will say that there are plenty of shots of the muscular (and ridiculously tanned…did they spray tan him?) Kellan Lutz, however those shots alone cannot carry a 100 minute long movie. Everything about this movie: directing, acting, CGI, cinematography, editing, and 3D was horrible.
The movie starts out with King Amphitryon (Scott Adkins) overtaking another city with his army. He’s power hungry and a tyrant. His lovely wife, Queen Alcmene (Roxanne McKee) ends up praying to the gods to stop her husband and bring peace to the kingdom. Hera answers her prayers and says that Zeus has been lusting over the Queen, so Hera grants Zeus the permission to give the Queen a baby that will bring peace to the kingdom. This baby is Hercules.
Fast forward 20 years (let’s just throw all childhood out the window) and Hercules is chasing after this lovely beauty, Hebe (Gaia Weiss). It’s obvious they’re in love. Hebe is the princess of Crete and is soon to wed Hercules half-brother Iphicles (Liam Garrigan), the heir to the throne. The next part is the absolutely hilarious CGI that occurs. Iphicles and Hercules are heading back to the palace when this “lion” comes out of the rocks. This thing looks like a puppet made by a child. It was so fake, it screamed low-budget. That aside, Hercules killed it by strangling the puppet lion. After returning to the palace the half-brother announces he is to wed Hebe. She’s pissed and runs off with Hercules. They get caught and Hercules gets told to go on a battle mission in Egypt. The army that goes with him gets ambushed and everyone is killed except for Hercules and the captain, Sotiris (Liam McIntyre). They are captured, sold into slavery, put into fights to win money for their master, eventually going back to Greece to fight in a huge arena to gain their freedom. Does this sound similar? It should, because the writers of this movie basically ripped off Gladiator. Long story short, Hercules accepts his fate as a demi-god and gains the kingdom.
What I didn’t understand was why he didn’t have his powers of strength, then received them momentarily, then they somehow vanished in the final battle to take back the kingdom. Although, Hercules magically got this lightning whip that wiped out the entire opposing enemy with a few cracks during the final battle. Seriously? Why even fight at all then. What’s the point if Zeus can just smite everyone?
The other thing that annoyed me about this movie was the director Renny Harlin had way too many slow-mo action freeze frame scenes. There was a couple in every battle scene. It became repetitive. The other thing was whenever Hercules and Hebe were together, snow magically came out of no where. Even in the middle of the day with the sun out.
This movie’s story was all over the place. The acting would throw you out of the moment because everyone had a different accent. The cut scenes were awkward and so were the transitions. I’m usually a pretty easy sale when it comes to movies. Usually I’d say it’s a popcorn muncher for 90 minutes of entertainment. This is 90 minutes of “make it stop now.”
Final Thoughts: If you like bad acting, forced, campy dialogue, repetitive battle scenes with slow-mo, horrible 3D, and laughable CGI then this is the PERFECT movie for you. Otherwise save that free Redbox code and wait for this movie to come out on a rental. Don’t waste your money seeing it in theaters. Go watch Gladiator, or Immortals. The only good thing (if you can call it that) is shirtless, muscle-bound guys, but you have 300 for that.