Films about Mythology and the Greeks and Romans have been popular in recent years. “The Legend of Hercules” (Directed by Renny Harlin) stars Kellan Lutz better known for his “Twilight” fame. This film begins with the inception and birth of said hero. His Mother Alcmene (Played by Roxanne McKee of TV’s “Game of Thrones”) makes a bargain with the God Zeus to carry his Son to bring an end to her tyrannical Husband Amphitryon. (Played by Scott Adkins of “The Expendables 2”) Meanwhile Hercules and his Brother Iphicles (Played by Liam Garrigan from TV’s “The Pillars of the Earth”) both vie for the beautiful Princess Saphirra. (Played by Gaia Weiss from “Mary Queen of Scotts”) Their Sibling rivalry results in the shunning of Hercules and his Friend Sotiris (Played by Liam Mcintyre of “Spartacus”) into Slavery and the battling arenas. He must survive to make his way home to win back his love and restore order in his Kingdom.
If you are a nitpicker for Mythology you may be disappointed with this version of Hercules. Hercules does not even know his origins for the first half of the film. instead the film focuses on his Kingdom’s politics and treachery. Interestingly enough we meet Lucius (played by Kenneth Cranham) is the ringleader behind an underground fight club if you will. It is here where Hercules’ Godlike strength comes in handy.
Speaking of fight sequences many of the action sequences feel straight out of the film “300”. While it’s not a bad thing but I was kind of confused why the Director chose to go this route. There is violence a plenty but hardly any Blood or gore. This if after all a PG-13 film. the musical score is rousing but hardly memorable.
The lavish Costumes and special effects are impressive. I was enthralled by the opening sequence which literally swoops us into the action with a bird’s eye view. At 99 minutes the movie pretty much zooms by. For me though the movie hits all the right notes and is just the right amount of time.
As is stated in the title this is more of an origin tale. There is no Hydra beast in this movie. In fact what little references there are of Zeus is just about all of the Mythology you will be getting. Sure there is romantic elements and drama but it’s mostly an action film. I think this was a smart move to make the film appeal to different ages.
The movie heavily changed the Mythology of Hercules. If successful I could see a possible franchise in the future. The cast all do fine in their roles but then the movie is really nothing you haven’t seen before. (traditionally speaking.) it’s a movie that focuses more on the human side of Hercules and that’s fine. But I won’t lie and say I was hoping for Monsters and Gods to pop up. I will give the makers props though for giving a different spin on the character of Hercules.