Conan the Barbarian – Review

Directed by Marcus Nispel
Starring Jason Momoa, Rachel Nichols, Ron Perlman, Rose McGowan, Stephen Lang
112 minutes
Opens August 19, 2011

*** stars out of five

Conan the Cimmerian (Jason Momoa) travels the continent of Hyboria to find and kill the merciless warlord Khalar Zym (Stephen Lang) who slaughtered his father and village. As Zym tries to resurrect his dead wife with the aid of his sorceress daughter Marique (Rose McGowan), he discovers the last piece to the puzzle lies in the pure blood of Tamara (Rachel Nichols), a beautiful high priestess. Conan rescues Tamara from Zym’s evil clutch and falls in love with her; together they continue the battle against evil.

Why See It?
As with all remakes there will always be a barrage of negative criticisms that follow the release; this won’t stop Nispel’s 3-D remake of Conan the Barbarian from being a huge box office attraction this summer. The brutal fighting scenes alone are magnificent and capture the true essence and meaning of what being barbaric is all about. Compared to the original 1982 version in which Arnold Schwarzenegger played the Conan character, this new rehash kicks butt.

First, Jason Momoa is a better actor (he can carry more believable lines and grunts) plus he looks more barbaric and fights better than Arnold any day. Second, the 3-D component adds a lot more punch and excitement to the gory fighting scenes.. As a female viewer, I was surprised that I didn’t turn my head away during the violent scenes; instead, I found myself wanting more and more of Momoa and his over-developed muscles whether on the battlefield or in the bedroom (when he makes hard passionate love to Tamara).

Third, both the storyline and emotional impact of this fantasy/adventure feels sincere. As a result, I was captured and held in suspension for the entire running time – all 112 glorious minutes of it. In fact, I enjoyed Conan the Barbarian so much that I did NOT want the action to end.