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Oh, I can understand why "Conan the Destroyer" is the way it is. The
original, classic "Conan the Barbarian" was a hit, but the Hollywood
decided they could get x-amount more money if they made a more
family-friendly sequel, thereby opening the franchise to the lucrative
market (never mind that, for as long as there have been "restrictive"
ratings, kids have known how to get to see the movies they want). Take
the sex, tone down the violence, crank up the humor, and... out comes this
It's like "Destroyer" is stuck in a state of half-development. The basic
storyline would be okay, but the script gives Conan a coterie of
unneccessary sidekicks (as if Conan were not a strong enough character to
carry a movie by himself). Grace Jones is interesting to look at but gets
tiresome VERY fast; the cowardly sidekick gets more irritating by the
second; Mako wears this expression like he's only in this one for the
Olivia d'Abo is just plain miscast: it's like she's a marker that should
read "Insert More Interesting Character in Second Draft." Arnold
Schwarzenegger does a competent job as Conan, but we don't see the raw
and brute force of the first movie. There is a thin line between
and complacency, between an actor and a star; it took Roger Moore six
to get to that point in the James Bond series, while Schwarzenegger
the same point with Conan in two.
I think part of the problem is whether or not the Conan concept is
enough to become family fare, and my answer is "no." Fans of Robert E.
Howard's Conan work know his Cimmerian is a very rough-edged hero, a
cunning, hard-drinking, hard-fighting man, and the first Conan movie
captured that essence. To change him into the simple-minded do-gooder of
"Conan the Destroyer" is to destroy what Conan is all about, and the movie
suffers for it.
Is "Conan the Destroyer" worth watching? Yes. For someone who knows
absolutely nothing about Conan, I suppose it can be a harmless
sword-and-sorcery popcorn flick. For Conan fans, it's kind of like
of the Lone Ranger" for Lone Ranger fans: an irresistible example of just
how badly Hollywood can treat your favorite character.
I just hope that if there is ever another Conan movie (not likely, thanks
"Destroyer"), the producers will concentrate on following the style of
"Conan the Barbarian" and just ignore this one.
Tags for Conan the Destroyer Full Movie
, Grace Jones
, Wilt Chamberlain
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