December 11, 2011

Review: Conan the Barbarian 2011

Conan the Barbarian 2011

With a gradually incoherent story line, Conan the Barbarian 2011 starts off exciting but leaves you wondering if you should have waited for the DVD. And, during the quiet times of the movie, you can actually hear Arnold gently weeping.

No matter what, this film had pretty big shoes to fill. With the 1982 success of the original Conan the Barbarian film, it is understandable that viewers would be watching this with a critical eye. A critical eye is not needed however, as the faults of this remake are seen even with a most general of moviegoers. Even if you did not see the original film, you would still recognize the very generic “you killed my family” revenge theme, albeit being poorly (and boringly) executed. You would also spot the cheesy dialogue all around, possibly asking the usher if they accidentally were playing a made-for-TV movie.

Conan The Barbarian 2011 - now on your local network station

(Now on your local network station)

By the first scene, I should have known what I was in for. You are treated to witness the birth of Conan while his mother was on the battlefield, and in bringing a new life, hers is taken. I had a feeling that this was supposed to instill some emotion but I didn’t feel anything but confusion as to why she had to die in the first place. With it being the first scene in the movie, I put that aside with the impression it was not important now and perhaps will be explained later (but never was.. the sad part is: you don’t care).

I have to admit, the first half hour of the movie was optimistically exciting, starting off with a scene involving a coming of age test for the young Conan that foreshadows his potential skill, brutality, and cunning. The movie follows up with a father / son “bonding” time revolving around the creation of his sword and father teaching son the ways of steel. I felt the connection between the two was sterile and forced, but maybe that’s what they were aiming for in a barbarian village. Perhaps, it is because I was surprised to see that Hellboy was pretty good with a sword.

Conan Hellboy Father

(Now at least this would have been an interesting twist)

As the movie progressed, I believe the last good scene in the movie was the battle of the “sand people”. After that, it was pretty much downhill.. a long, drawn out, incoherent hill. Think of going downhill in your car, with the emergency brake half on, and seeing broken signs, wondering if they were of importance or not. You will see characters pop in and out of the movie, with minimal impact to the story line and a weak connection with Conan. You will also be confused why the bad guys got wimpier when they supposed to get stronger. It really felt like that the writers got lazy at the end and didn’t give a damn.

Conan Lazy Writer

(I wouldn't be surprised if Captain America helped Conan in the end)

Bottom Line: Conan the Barbarian starts fairly well with some decent action scenes, but ends with the audience wondering if they should have stayed home. The culture in you will miss the 1982 original and the spike in you will want to go home and download it.



  1. Danielle Probst says:

    I didn’t see the original but I do reminder it.. I saw the new one .the fight scenes were ok but at times you forgot
    Just what they were fighting for…then you have this witch that ummm as far and I know they should have powers but this chick must if forgot to use them

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