In the late 1950s, American bodybuilder Steve Reeves somehow ended up in Italy and made a cheapo production of 'Hercules.' It spawned an avalanche of knockoff strongmen films -- some starring Reeves, some featuring a rather malleable new character named Maciste -- and are just wretched examples of boring cinema that, for whatever reason, I ended up seeing quite a bit of as a little kid. But to an 8-year-old back then, sub-Ray Harryhausen special effects and wafer-thin plots still managed to impress. Hey, it was a Sunday afternoon and a color TV.
It's easy to say “they don't make 'em like that anymore,” but the spirit of these garbage movies is alive and well in Renny Harlin's charmingly awful 'The Legend of Hercules.' Starring Kellan Lutz as a block of concrete that has to fake the classic British accent (even though Hercules is Greek), this is boring by-the-numbers dross from the artless Millennium Films, best known for 'The Expendables' films. It has maybe three good fight scenes and two moments that are so over-the-top bad you just have to laugh, and that makes for some undeniable entertainment. The best way to describe 'The Legend of Hercules' is as the fake movie that teenagers in movies go to see.
While Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson has been busy at work on Brett Ratner's 'Hercules: The Thracian Wars,' director Renny Harlin ('Die Hard 2,' 'Exorcist: The Beginning') was already busy with his own take on the iconic grecian strongman. Along with 'Twilight' star Kellan Lutz (in the title role), Liam McIntyre ('Spartacus'), Gaia Weiss ('Mary Queen of Scotts'), Scott Adkins ('The Bourne Ultimatum') and co-producer Jonathan Yunger, Harlin came out to New York Comic-Con 2013 on Saturday to reveal the first trailer for 'Hercules: The Legend Begins' and to give fans some idea of what to expect from this origin tale.
'Spartacus,' meet 'Hercules'...3D. Liam McIntyre, the man who played the titular rebel slave on Starz's popular series, has come about Nu Image/Millennium's big-budget 'Hercules 3D' film starring Kellan Lutz. That enough beefcake for ya?
Just when you thought Brett Ratner's 'Hercules' starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson was the only Hercules movie out on the market, in steps Renny Harlin who's found his own Grecian strongman in Kellan Lutz for a rival big-budget flick. It makes sense if you think about it -- what better way to attract a huge audience than with a shirtless 'Twilight' heartthrob?
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