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CONAN THE BARBARIAN: WASTED LEGEND?

I have this past weekend finally viewed the recent CONAN THE BARBARIAN remake from a few months back, which I personally was looking forward to seeing. Yes, I did hear that it was mostly full of blood splattering brutal fights, grunting savage characters, excessive naked woman jiggling around and a CONAN with silky smooth metrosexual looks but still I needed see it.

As the original from 1982 starring an iconic ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER was a huge cult success over the years with a sequel which was only mildly decent, the continued original books, comics and other merchandise has kept the brand there right until this latest cinematic version had appeared.

One reason I really wished to see this new version was that it had MARCUS NISPEL directing, who has previously put out stunning remakes-visually at least-of THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE and FRIDAY THE THIRTEENTH. NISPEL really can create some highly atmosphric disturbing dark imagery unlike few others. I had seen early images of this CONAN and it did seem to appear to possibly be absolutely stunning.

 Well, it is not a complete disaster really but also it is not really the huge epic fantasy adventure it really could. It almost is there, but just not quite. NISPEL does good work, but so far in, it feels like perhaps he loses his way. There is already so much inspiring CONAN artwork from the book covers and comic imagery to draw from, and much of it is clearly inspired that way. It ultimately seems very likely that the budget was just not big enough for what it really could have been. The script too, seem only have polished, and maybe the whole film is too intimidated by the shadow of the original and SCHWARZENEGGER. JASON MOMOA who plays CONAN is a reasonably decent choice, possibly better than SHCWARZENEGGER really but the script and direction let him down.

It all could have been much more epic, as it just about nearly is. It is not entirely a terrible verison, I really can atch it again, but I am sad to think of what it could easily have been. They were apaprently hoping to make it a new franchise, a new CONAN film series. Judging by box office, that may not happen. In time, CONAN might return once again, he is too mighty a character to stay down for long

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About JAMES E PARSONS

Author of science fiction novels Orbital Kin and Minerva Century-also horror, literary fiction, many short stories and screenplays. Always reading, writing, watching films, playing guitar/bass, and am a husband with a coffee addiction. New horror novel due for 2017. This is my blog, offshoot from my website. It will be where I post current thoughts, opinions, views, reviews, or discussions about contemporary film, movies, books, video games, television series mostly in the horror, science fiction, fantasy and their sub-genre offshoots. The entertainment not in the mainstream (for the most part) and proud of it. Also follow me on twitter- @ParsonsFiction, and facebook - James E Parsons

2 responses to “CONAN THE BARBARIAN: WASTED LEGEND?

  1. Ya, know, the SCHWARZENEGGER version had some hokey parts in it, which I think the new version stayed away from – which is the one thing I liked about it. But, 2 things make the old version so much better. The 1st is the scene when Conan is a boy, holding his mother’s hand when she is beheaded, His mother’s hand slips out of his as she falls – it is a powerful, gut-wrenching visual! The second is, Tulsa Doom (played by James Earl Jones) is just a more stately and menacing villain, someone I could believe would rise to become a leader of the world.

  2. It has been a while since I ‘ve seen the original movie, though used to see it regularly on TV. Now you mention those scenes, it does sound very classic. And certainly the fantastic legend that is James Earl Jones was so impressively threatening and evil.

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