Former Baywatch star and hulking slab of granite Jason Momoa steps into the presumably big shoes of Arnold Schwarzenegger to play that grunting, brutish warrior from the ancient land of Cimmeria in the new version of Conan The Barbarian. This dull, humorless remake is just as dumb as the campy 1982 film starring Schwarzenegger, but makes the fatal flaw of taking itself way too seriously.
So Conan, who sets off on a personal mission to avenge the death of his father at the hands of the evil Khalar Zym (played by Avatar’s Stephen Lang), quickly finds himself involved in a battle to save civilization when Zym and his sorceress daughter go after an innocent maiden whose ‘pure blood’ will allow them to rule the world.
This ridiculous plot is an excuse for excessive violence and blood spill, including a string of gory beheadings and stabbings. All the while, our beefy swordsman hero gets barely a few lines of dialogue barring those corny vows he makes to “melt the bones of the vanquished” and to “cast my enemies into oceans of blood”.
Momoa himself may possess the physical pre-requisites for the part – chiseled abs; long, unkempt hair; and man-boobs – but he simply doesn’t have the charm or that star quality to keep you engaged in this mindless mayhem. The special effects in this film are decent, but the carnage becomes monotonously predictable. In the end, it’s such a stinking bore, it doesn’t even work as a cheesy guilty-pleasure.
I’m going with one out of five for Conan The Barbarian. There are so many better things you could do with your time!