Normally, January is the dumping ground for garbage Hollywood films, but some should not even exist, and The Legend of Hercules is one them. Director Renny Harlin (Cliffhanger and Die Hard 2) has made some real stinkers in the past (12 Rounds, Exorcist – The Beginning and Deep Blue Sea), but this film is an epic failure and a major insult to intelligence.
Our story begins with Hercules (Kellan Lutz), who is betrayed by King Amphitryon (Scott Adkins) and sold into slavery because of a forbidden love. Now, Hercules must fight his way back on top to overthrow the king and to take back his rightful kingdom. Sound familiar? Lutz may have the brawn but his performance is dull, along with all the other actors in this film. Scriptwriters Sean Hood (Conan the Barbarian … the remake) and Daniel Giat cannot even muster up a half-baked script, instead opting to rehash old story lines with nothing new to add. It’s basically a mediocre imitation of films like Ben-Hur (a hero put to work as a boat rower), Gladiator (thrown into slavery only to redeem himself in the arena) and Spartacus (a prisoner rising up to lead a mass revolt against barbarians). With lazy writing, awful dialog and amateur acting,
Hercules fails to be called a brainless action film or even a dramatic one. On top of that, Harlin throws in cheap-looking slow-motion action scenes. The slow motion may have helped the Spartans look cool in 300, but here it makes Hercules look amateur. As if things could not get any worse for the film, Harlin also decides to turn it into a bloated 3-D flick. Now I am beginning to see why this film was not screened for advanced critics. It currently holds a 3 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. If you want to keep your sanity and not waste your money, then I would advise you to stay away from this film.