“No matter how fast you run, no matter how far you go, the beast will follow. Man cannot escape his fate… “
These are the opening words to the theatrical trailer for Hercules that was unveiled today (June 4).
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson stars as the titular character in the Brett Ratner telling of the classic tale of Hercules… or is it? Well, no not really.
Everyone knows the story of Hercules, don’t they? Just in case you missed that day in history class, here’s Hercules’ story in a very small nutshell.
Hercules (Heracles in Greek) is the son of the Greek God Zeus and the mortal Alcmene. After being driven mad by Zeus’ wife Hera (who had a bit of a vengeful nature towards the many of Zeus’ offspring not mothered by her, but especially the ones he had with mortals), he kills his wife and six sons. Realising this was probably not a smart thing to do; Hercules travels to Delphi to visit the Oracle and beg for forgiveness and asks what he can do to atone for his actions. The Oracle Pythoness tells him that if he’s good for twelve years and serves King Eurysthesus, doing anything and everything the King tells him to, he will be rewarded with immortality. Over the course of the twelve years, Eurysthesus makes him complete twelve seemingly impossible tasks. Tasks which are now known as the Twelve Labours of Hercules.
The new film is not a tale of these tasks, but is instead the story of what happened to Hercules after he returns home and is based on the graphic novel Hercules: The Thracian Wars.
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.
Oh, and if you’re wondering why Hercules is wearing a dead lion on his head, the first of the twelve labours was to kill the Nemean Lion. Hercules managed to do so by stunning it with his club and strangling it with his bare hands. It is said that he used the lion’s own claws to skin it and wore the hide as a badge of honour for ever after.
Hercules opens in theatres July 25 and based off the trailer, the soundtrack sounds like it might kick just as much ass as the film.
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