When Conan’s tribe is brutally massacred he goes on a quest for vengeance. Again.
Having recently sat through Red Sonja we decided to round off the Conan canon with this 2011 remake with Jason Momoa in the lead role. At first we thought it was just another generic fantasy adventure. And we were right.
In some respects this is an update, with a greater commitment to diversity and Rachel Nichols as the damsel causing distress, but in other ways, like the gratuitously topless women, Red Sonja style evil lesbian and general hokiness, if feels stuck in cinematic prehistory.
This time Thulsa Doom’s snake cult is replaced by an octopus cult, for some reason, but they have at least learnt from the failure of Conan the Destroyer and don’t skimp on the bloody violence (in his memoir Arnie gives this as the main reason for the film’s poor performance, although there are more than a few others).
It benefits from decent action and special effects, but they are slave to an utterly generic story and overly serious characters who it’s impossible to care about. We’ve all seen films which look like they were more fun to make than to watch. Well this Conan looks like it was more fun to fill out the tax returns.
Unfortunately Ol’ Jas Mom can’t fill the Arnie sized hole. Heck, he’s not even a match for The Scorpion King. And all the dismemberings in the world can’t make up for a boring story and lack of characterizatation that will have you praying to Krom for a quick death.