Dwayne Johnson would have to stoop pretty low to do worse than January’s The Legend of Hercules with his upcoming swords-and-sandals epic Hercules. Not only is he a much better fit for the legendary warrior than Kellan Lutz, but his take on the character also features a strong supporting cast, Rush Hour‘s Brett Ratner as director, and a larger scale (the original title was Hercules: The Thracian Wars, so filmgoers can expect some epic battle sequences).
Though the first clip from Hercules doesn’t showcase much action, it definitely hints at real carnage to come. In the footage shown here, we see Hercules and his men walk into a trap set by ferocious, painted warriors. As the enemy forces bear down on his army, Hercules dons a lion head (the same as the one seen in the first full trailer). “Look at me?” Hercules says. “Do I look afraid?” And as he prepares to rush into battle… the clip ends.
For an early clip, it’s not a terrible one, though we already knew that Johnson, who still bears the nickname “The Rock” from his wrestling days, was going to make for a booming, physically imposing Hercules. I’m still waiting to see how he handles that sword, and the clip gives away disappointingly little.
In addition to Johnson, Hercules stars John Hurt, Joseph Fiennes, Rufus Sewell, Ian McShane, Rebecca Ferguson, and Irina Shayk.
The official plot synopsis reads:
Everyone knows the legend of Hercules and his twelve labors. Our story begins after the labors, and after the legend…
Haunted by a sin from his past, Hercules has become a mercenary. Along with five faithful companions, he travels ancient Greece selling his services for gold and using his legendary reputation to intimidate enemies. But when the benevolent ruler of Thrace and his daughter seek Hercules’ help to defeat a savage and terrifying warlord, Hercules finds that in order for good to triumph and justice to prevail… he must again become the hero he once was… he must embrace his own myth… he must be Hercules.
That’s certainly a more promising plot than The Legend of Hercules‘s, seeing as that film flopped spectacularly when trying to dump the iconic hero into a dull love triangle. Hopefully the combination of Johnson’s might and a stronger story will allow Hercules to find much greater success.
Hercules opens on July 25th in 3D.