The latest “Hercules” has attacked the 2014 summer movie going public with power and unending visual excitement. The question asked and never fully answered is “Is Hercules” actually the true son of the Greek God Zeus or is he just a very strong and highly skilled warrior for hire?” The one sure thing is that the star of the show, Dwayne Johnson of WWF and Fast and Furious fame is an extremely physically imposing man. However, if there is any point to this film it becomes clear that in the end it is the mental strength that drives and guides the physical.
As expected the film “Hercules” is driven in large part by gruesome battle scenes often leaving hundreds if not thousands recently slaying or severely wounded bodies strewn about a battle field. Thanks to great editing and superbly applied special effects the battle scenes themselves do provide a significant level of visual entertainment. But honestly and very much on a personal level I always find the entertainment value in films with massive battle scenes and musicals such as “Les Miserables” a bit weird. You see I served with the U.S. Marines in Vietnam and I just don’t find a bunch of dead bodies nor people actually singing while in combat either fun or in the case of the singing while fighting part, believable. Yet I do fully realize that throughout modern history a huge number of people do find the movie versions of big battle scenes to be entertaining and riveting.
I also find it a bit odd that in “Hercules” as in most other movies about ancient warriors to always have at least one very hot woman in leather short shorts and halter top running around severely kicking butt while totally avoiding any serious injury herself. Then again if you are going to put such a character in a movie, hiring the gorgeous Ingrid Bolso Berdal is a very good choice.
“Hercules” is full of stereotypes and clichés but it is entertaining. More importantly in the bigger picture it does provide a few significant views into the human condition and moral choices and consequences. In the end it appears that a will to further justice is more powerful than any demi-God reputation. “Hercules” is not a chic flick but fear not guys, getting your significant other to go watch the film with you is easier by emphasizing the fact that it does star Dwayne Johnson. But in any case whether you see the movie with your date, your guy friends or by yourself, it is entertaining, has some relevance and will keep you cool and comfortable in our scorching heat for the better part of two hours.
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Copyright 2014 Ron Irwin