|year: 2014 rating: **|
The poor kid's rambling about how his demigod uncle had to survive twelve formidable tests, including an indestructible lion… And yet there are only a few visuals to back it up…
Too bad since these dangerous trials would have made a pretty great first movie, which would lead to this particular tale that feels like a sequel or an episode of an already established cable series...
Hercules has a team of faithful warriors backing his every move, and they're quickly given a paid gig to train unskilled townsfolk to become powerful enough to defeat a barrage of deadly centaurs, and thus the very contained adventure begins.
Much of the film is either the training or the fights, but Hercules, just another member of a gigantic battlefront, is hardly distinguished enough to have an entire movie not only based on his legend, but named after him and him alone.
There are a few worthy side-characters, especially Ian McShane as a crusty mentor who predicts his own death with humorous results. Add a twist-villain and halfway through, the dam bursts for more battles with the muscular son of Zeus leading charge... Although it's questioned whether Hercules is truly related to Zeus at all. Perhaps he’s just a really strong guy using that element to become more powerful: the epitome of a confidence boost.
Either way, with so many people surrounding him, there needed more time for the man to stand on his own without all the distractions.