IMMORTALS: When asked why he didn't see Cecil B. DeMille's SAMSON AND DELILAH (1949), Groucho Marx (DUCK SOUP) reportedly said, "I never go to movies where the man's breasts are bigger than the woman's." He definitely would have skipped this mythological fantasy in which bizarre costumes look more suitable for revelers in a Gay Pride parade.
The plot, such as it is, revolves around the efforts of a warrior peasant (Henry Cavill) to thwart an evil king (Mickey Rourke) from obtaining a bow that's like the nuclear weapon of its day. Along the way are numerous beheadings, bludgeonings and expressionistic mayhem while Rourke (THE WRESTLER), clad more like a caveman than a monarch, engages in his usual quota of scenery chewing.
Visually, the movie is a striking piece of work because of Brendan Galvin's cinematography and Tom Foden's lavish production and set design. But in terms of performance, most of the actors consistently looked as if they were more interested in posing than emoting.
Characters appear and disappear without any rhyme or reason while gods who are supposedly immortal die bloody, violent deaths only to live again so they can fight each other and die bloody, violent deaths in the heavens (Huh?).
This is the kind of movie that Rick Perry supporters would love since it champions style over substance before going brain dead at crucial moments. There's a nifty musical score from Trevor Morris that's heavy on brass and ominously campy enough to forewarn of impending doom that's just around the corner. The problem is that the movie pretentiously takes itself so seriously that its very visible flaws make it laughable in a manner that wasn't intended.
CRITIC'S GRADE: C
MOVIES TO WATCH FOR IN DECEMBER: SHAME (December 2), NEW YEAR'S EVE (December 9), THE SITTER (December 9), TINKER, TAILOR, SOLDIER, SPY (December 9), WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN (December 9), YOUNG ADULT (December 9), ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS: CHIPWRECKED (December 16), CARNAGE (December 16), MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - GHOST PROTOCOL (December 16), SHERLOCK HOLMES: A GAME OF SHADOWS (December 16), THE ADVENTURES OF TINTIN (December 21), THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO (December 21), IN THE LAND OF BLOOD AND HONEY (December 23), WE BOUGHT A ZOO (December 23), EXTREMELY LOUD AND INCREDIBLY CLOSE (December 25), WAR HORSE (December 25), THE IRON LADY (December 30)