Conan The Barbarian

"Weak"

Conan The Barbarian Review


With a complete lack of self-awareness, this po-faced remake looks more like a trash-TV series (a la Spartacus or Camelot) than a proper movie. Mainly because the filmmakers continually opt for gratuitous gore rather than actual storytelling.

Born in battle, Conan (Howard, then Momoa) is set on vengeance. His people, the Cimmerians, were slaughtered by the evil Khalar Zym (Lang), who was looking for the barbarian-held pieces to a mythical all-powerful mask. Once the mask is reassembled, Khalar Zym and his fiendish daughter Marique (McGowan) need a pure-blood of Acheron to activate it and, as luck would have it, the last one is hot babe Tamara (Nichols). So of course Conan and Tamara team up to fight off the villains and save the pre-historic world.

The first act is narrated by Morgan Freeman (who else?), who generously explains the back-story as if it makes sense. But the filmmakers merrily ignore continuity and logic, pasting the script together with action/effects sequences every few minutes, whether or not the story requires them. One early scene should actually be the finale, but everyone inexplicably escapes to fight another day. And the climactic battle with a tentacled beast is utterly superfluous.

In other words, this is lazy filmmaking, so there isn't a single moment of tension. And the tired cliches and stale formula make it both dull and pointless. With little on-screen personality, Momoa's thunderous physicality at least holds our interest, as does the over-groomed Nichols and shameless scene-chompers Lang and McGowan. Frankly, there isn't nearly enough Perlman (as Conan's dad) or Taghmaoui (as his sparky sidekick).

But the real problem is that it's so over-serious that it's no fun. The hyperbolic blood and gore is neither amusing nor horrific. A scene of father-son bonding through sword-forging never winks at its innate corniness.

Lines like "I love, I love, I slay" are spoken with a straight face. And Marique's Freddy-Kruger talons are a step too far from the director who so tepidly remade Friday the 13th. In the end, it's not much more than another forgettable Hollywood marketing exercise.



Facts and Figures

Genre: Action/Adventure

Run time: 129 mins

In Theaters: Friday 14th May 1982

Box Office Worldwide: $37M

Budget: $90M

Distributed by: Universal Pictures

Production compaines: Nu Image Films, Paradox Entertainment, Millenium Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 72%
Fresh: 23 Rotten: 9

IMDB: 6.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , , , Joe Gatta, , , Fredrik Malmberg,

Starring: as Conan, as Marique, as Tamara, as Corin, as Khalar Zym, as Ela-Shan, as Young Conan, Steve O'Donnell as Lucius, as Fassir - High Priest, as Artus, as Ukafa, Milton Welsh as Remo, Bashar Rahal as Quarter Master, Diana Lyubenova as Cheren

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.