DVD Review - Conan the Barbarian

Marcus Nispel crafts an opening that's similar to the opening of Star Trek (2009). A baby is born at the moment that one of its parents dies and the dying parent is the one that names the baby. Instead of James T. Kirk, we get simply Conan.

After witnessing the death of his other parent, Conan grows up to be big and buff and on a bloody revenge kick to kill the one who killed his parents. That big and buff warrior who certainly knows how to wield a sword is played by Jason Momoa. Momoa was first introduced in 1999 at the age of 19 in the TV series Baywatch Hawaii.

Momoa has since popped up in other TV series since including Stargate: Atlantis and most recently with Game of Thrones. He's not given many lines of dialogue here. He's clearly just brawn, a beefy beefcake with one facial expression who's mostly a stuntman than an actor giving us emotions that vary in any way.

Rachel Nichols who co-stars as Tamara, a female monk that Conan has to protect, is a good actress but her character is not all that well-written. Namely, for a female monk, she pretty easily has sex with Conan. Some more interplay between she and Conan would have been appreciated, and I said interplay, not intercourse.

Nispel skillfully creates this fantasy world that looks good, but his action scenes leave much to be desired. There is a sandman attack that felt extremely lame. There was no sense of danger to it, no sense of weight to it and the choreography felt sloppy.

There was also a boat attack that was no where near as fun as the various boat attacks in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. There was nothing innovative or fresh to it. The fights in general have lots of blood and gore to them. They consist of a lot of sword slicing and stabbing that got to be too gruesome or gruesome solely for gruesome's sake.

One Star out of Five.
Rated R for violence, nudity and sexuality.
Running Time: 1 hr. and 52 mins.


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