Conan the Barbarian Cinema Review

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Reviewed by Chris McEneany, 28th August 2011.

More in-keeping with the slapdash nature of Albert Pyun's actually quite wonderful The Sword And The Sorcerer and Terry Marcel's daft but ambitious Hawk The Slayer (though not as good as either, I'm afraid), Marcus Nispel's dreary, dull and brain-dead attempt to reinvigorate Conan The Barbarian is nothing more than action-packed dross. All the basic ingredients are there, but they are shamefully mismanaged. A pretty much perfect casting choice for the Cimmerian warrior comes completely undone with a script that gives him absolutely no character to play with, leaving poor Jason Momoa lost in a turgid sea of sweltering CG and poor 3D gimmicks that work consistently to drown any and all of his attempts to become the character he once seemed born to play. Plus, he is surrounded by a supporting bevy of one-note caricatures and utter time-wasters.

There's plenty of bloodshed and more scraps than you can swing a sword at, yet none of it engages or excites. The evil maguffin plot is atrociously handled, the dialogue stunningly bad and the performances are tired and embarrassed at best, utterly wretched at worst. By far the best section is the very beginning when we are introduced to Conan and his cave-man-like Daddy and the quest for revenge is established. I wish that Nispel's film had ended just after that point and that we had a part 2, made by someone else entirely, to look forward to.

If you want to see a classic franchise reboot-cum-origin story, then my advice is to go and see Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes instead … and give this Cimmerian meat-head a wide berth.

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Active Member
If the laughable Conan the Destroyer is better than this im sad. That film reminded me of those crummy dated sinbad films and I wouldn't watch it again for a bet.


Distinguished Member
I don't understand how they can keep getting this wrong?

Stories like Hour Of The Dragon or A Witch Shall Be Born are pretty much almost there as screenplays. They just need to adapt these and they'd have a perfect Conan story.

Why go to all the hassle of writing a new story... all the hard work has already been done!

Hollywood is full of the biggest idiots on the planet.

Especially those that axed Del Toro's At The Mountains Of Madness... don't even get me started on that!


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