Having endured his legendary twelve labors, Hercules, the Greek demigod, has his life as a sword-for-hire tested when the King of Thrace and his daughter seek his aid in defeating a tyrannical warlord.
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Fourteen hundred years BCE, a tormented soul walked the earth that was neither man nor god. Hercules was the powerful son of the god king Zeus, for this he received nothing but suffering his entire life. After twelve arduous labours and the loss of his family, this dark, world-weary soul turned his back on the gods finding his only solace in bloody battle. Over the years he warmed to the company of six similar souls, their only bond being their love of fighting and presence of death. These men and women never question where they go to fight or why or whom, just how much they will be paid. Now the King of Thrace has hired these mercenaries to train his men to become the greatest army of all time. It is time for this bunch of lost souls to finally have their eyes opened to how far they have fallen when they must train an army to become as ruthless and blood thirsty as their reputation has become. Written by
The movie features numerous characters from mythology and legend, using the Greek names. Except for the title character who is referred to by his Roman name Hercules rather than Heracles. Nearly all movies do this because his Roman name is much more recognizable in pop culture and is a sensible marketing choice. It can be considered a translation of what the characters were really saying. See more »
General Sitacles, perhaps you would care to inspect the armour of Hercules?
[Tries on the armour]
Leather armour? We will be skewered like pigs.
[Turns as Tydeus strikes him with an axe]
Linothorax. Hewn from the skin of the Erymanthean boar. It's indestructible.
Man in crowd:
Wait. If it's indestructible, how did Hercules cut It off the boar?
He used an indestructible blade.
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When the credits roll, there is a 3d animation sequence going over Hercules' labors against the beasts which shows how his companions helped him to slay them. See more »
Hercules and chums are mercenaries, pressed into service for Lord Cotys to put down a rebel uprising which looks likely to overthrow the throne.
The trailer teases this movie as being a myths and monsters movie: it isn't. It's a fairly routine swords and sandals actioner, and the mythical critters teased in the trailer all come before the opening title, and are either tall tales depicted, or things seen unclearly from a distance. What is left is a rather dark film with a lot of battle action, pitched uneasily at a level which is too graphic for family viewing and not graphic enough for those who like blood and dismemberment.
There is a single F word - unnecessary and out of place.
Dwayne Johnson does this stuff well - he looks good, has great physical presence and, even when the part is somewhat darker than usual, he remains very likable. The supporting cast are all quite good - it was interesting to see Rufus Sewell playing a goodie for once (kind of like a young Ian McShane even though McShane was also in the film, with all the best moments of humour), and John Hurt gets to play both ends of the spectrum, meek and scenery-chewing.
I quite liked this - it is certainly a lot better than this year's previous Hercules offering - but felt that it was a missed opportunity: they promised me monsters and then didn't deliver them!
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