The 1.96m tall mountain of muscle, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson (The Tooth Fairy, Fast 5, Fast and Furious 6, Pain and Gain and stacks of other movies), was born to play such roles as Hercules. He usually does it so well.
Known for his strength and endless adventures (more famously, his legendary twelve labours), Hercules, the son of Greek god Zeus and mortal mother Alcmene, leads a gang of mercenaries: Amphiaraus the prophet (Ian McShane), Autolycus the thief (Rufus Sewell), Tydeus the warrior (Aksel Hennie), Atalanta the gorgeous archer (Ingrid Bolsø Berdal) and Iolaus the storyteller (Reece Ritchie).
King Cotys of Thrace (John Hurt) asks Hercules to train his armies to defend his kingdom against the ruthless warlord Rheseus. If successful, Hercules is promised a reward of his weight in gold. Accepting the offer, Hercules sets about what seems initially, an impossible task. But with Iolaus constantly reminding the learned soldiers of their mentor’s heroic endeavours, and feats of god-like strength, the impossible becomes probable, and the battles ensue.
From the very first scene, it’s obvious this movie is expected to be a blockbuster and with it’s huge $100 million budget, the film makers had every intention. The enormous scale battle scenes are epic and many, but are injected with a comical overtone that becomes annoying. I like Dwayne Johnson as an actor and enjoy watching his movies, but I just couldn’t get into this one. He usually immerses himself into his characters and portrays his roles with so much emotion and intent in an attempt to convince his audience of his fantastic, and varied, acting ability (no doubt a skill he learned during his many years as a professional wrestler). Sadly however, he was unconvincing and didn’t seem to be ‘into it’, which was reflected in the entire mood of the movie. I was expecting a Monty Python character to jump out from behind a prop and say something out of context to continue the unwanted comedy, but was again, disappointed. My 15 year-old daughter loved it, but she likes all of The Rock’s movies.
The Movie Lad rates this: A bag of wine gums and a super size coke to keep me awake!