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Movie Review: ‘The Legend of Hercules’ A Lesson in Bad Filmmaking

The Legend of Hercules


“You must accept who you are.”– Mariah Gale as Kakia

Hercules was born to fight.
Hercules was born to fight.
Summit Entertainment
Lots of muscles but not much else.
Summit Entertainment

What’s good: Some of the fight scenes are exciting to watch.

What’s not good: Poorly developed characters, dialogue, plot, and acting.

What happened: Every year, there is always a film that makes you wonder why it was ever made. Movies like these can be so awful that you’d rather have a root canal than to sit through another minute of such nonsense. ‘The Legend of Hercules’ is unfortunately the latest example of a movie that probably should never have been released into the theaters.

In the year 1200 B.C., a vicious war was fought between Argos and Greece. The Greek king Amphitryon (Scott Adkins) was a ferocious fighter and conniving leader determined to control the world. Nicknamed ‘King Killer’, he proves that he will murder anyone who stands in his way of ultimate power. Meanwhile, his wife Queen Alcmene (Roxanne McKee) desperately tries to find a way out from under the king’s control. She soon receives a gift that promises to end Amphitryon’s treacherous reign of terror.

Half man, half god, Hercules (Kellan Lutz) was destined for greatness. He was blessed with more power, strength, and stamina than any normal man. The way he takes down several soldiers in the caves proves that he was designed for combat. All Hercules really wants is to marry Princess Hebe (Gaia Weiss), but Amphitryon devises a plan that will keep them apart forever. Hercules must accept his true origins in order to defeat the king once and for all.

Although this is not nearly the worst film ever made, ‘The Legend of Hercules’ is a laughably bad film that should have never been released in the movie theaters. First of all, the simple and clichéd storyline coupled with cheesy dialogue and cheap special effects made this really hard to sit through. Kellan Lutz clearly has the muscles, but delivers quite poorly on the sparse dialogue he was given. The lion Hercules fights early on looks so unbelievably fake that you’ll start making fun of it. The special effect of the power he receives from Zeus during the final battle just looked awful too. Also, the scene where Alcmene gets pregnant is flat out silly and tasteless. This should have been done so much better. Finally, the supposed romance between Hercules and Hebe was weak at best. Not enough time was spent developing this aspect of the plot so it felt rushed. You ultimately won’t even care if they get together. ‘The Legend of Hercules’ feels more like a cheap movie made for television instead of a box office feature film.

The only time this film shines is when Hercules gets to flex his muscles and fight. Many of his battles will instantly remind you of the great action in ‘300’ as it goes into slow motion. Seeing Hercules deliver serious punishment to the enemy is pretty cool to watch. The best fight scene is when Hercules has to single-handedly take on six of Greece’s best in a fight to the death. It was actually enjoyable even though it felt too much like ‘Gladiator’. You’ll momentarily think the crowd is chanting Maximus instead of Hercules.

Bottom Line: Unless you are a huge Kellan Lutz fan, you are better off waiting until ‘The Legend of Hercules’ goes to basic cable television.

Grade: D

Rating: PG-13 Run time: 1 hour, 39 minutes

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