After the minimal CGI work and virtually non-existent fantasy element in the first Scorpion King movie I wasn't expecting a Sword and Sorcery epic with this one.
I have had a soft spot for sword and sorcery movies for many years, and I will happily admit that virtually all of them are hardly even worth their straight to Video/DVD status. Some I can watch over and over again (The Sword and the Sorcerer, Conan The Barbarian and Excalibur for example) but overs are more of an "it's so bad it's good" kind of a thing.
Scorpion King certainly fits into the later category. The acting is, at best, weak and at worst, so wooden it creaks. The CGI is weak although not as bad as some I have seen.
The plot is shallow and at times ridiculous, ludicrously playing fast and loose with mythology like "King Minos and the Minotaur". It seems to draw on many of it's predecessors for plot elements, the most obvious being the when the characters have to travel through an evil swamp to reach their goal (let me see, who has used that before.... Lord of the Rings, Ridley Scott's Legend, or the one that this film's scene reminded me of most closely Krull, I am sure there are more).
OK so it will never win awards, but are there any good points? Yes! Actually I enjoyed it quite a bit, it reminded me in many ways of the glory days of 1980's straight to video Sword and Sorcery movies (The Beastmaster, Hearts and Armour, dare I say it Barbarian Queen). The ropey creature costume/CGI work is fairly discreetly handled (the Minotaur is mainly seen in very quick and shadowy shots, and the scorpion at the end is mainly invisible). The film certainly has a much higher fantasy element than the first Scorpion King movie, which was more a straight adventure film than true Sword and Sorcery. Finally, the leading lady in the film, Karen David, is also very easy on the eye!
This film has quite a strong feel of the fantasy role-playing games about it. It features a group of adventurers on a quest, various (almost) random encounters, and a showdown with a superhuman wizard/king/monster at the end.
A lot of nonsense really but both my wife and I enjoyed it (and she is not a great fantasy fan either).
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