Directed by: Marcus Nispel
Written by: Thomas Dean Donnelly, Joshua Oppenheimer, and Sean Hood
Full credits at IMDb
Of course Lionsgate would tap Marcus Nispel to direct this, right? The Platinum Dunes hack-for-hire has become the modern master of the schlockhouse reboot. Proving he could capably revive the Friday the 13th and Texas Chainsaw franchises, why not move him on to some other cheesy 80s property like Conan? This new movie has been in the works for almost a decade, as part of a carefully rolled out rebranding of the Conan character, who dates back to Robert E. Howard's Depression-era fantasy stories but "had grown plain weird," as Brooks Barnes recently reported. The company that owned the rights withdrew all Conan merchandise from the market in 2002, and has been slowly reintroducing new stuff ever since: new comics, a strong-selling computer game, and now the film. This carefully controlled strategy has culminated in a movie tailor-made for boys, who'll be thrilled into buying new things by the copious gore and bare breasts without being bored by things like character development or smart pacing. (Here's the structure: violence-violence-violence-exposition-violence-violence-violence. Repeat for 110 minutes.) But what's inoffensive for one demographic is exhausting, exasperating for another.
Keep reading my conversation with Benjamin Sutton at The L Magazine
Watch the trailer: