Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Conan the Barbarian|
Actors: Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Earl Jones
Genres: Action & Adventure, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Conan the Barbarian [DVD] (1982) Arnold Schwarzenegger; James Earl Jones
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David D. from SHREVEPORT, LA
Reviewed on 7/19/2008...
Look on this site for the 'Complete Quest.' It has both the Barbarian and the Destroyer as well, for 1 credit.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Now they will know why they are afraid of the dark...
Marc Ruby? | Warren, MI USA | 07/30/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Back in 1982, when this film first came out I remember being absolutely spellbound by the production. It was as if Conan had stepped right out of Robert E. Howard's books. I remember some grumbling, because the script was not perfectly true to the original books. But, frankly, I did not give a darn. Valeria (Sandahl Bergman) was the perfect warrior maiden, Thulsa Doom (James Earl Jones) was the snake worshipper from hell, and Arnold Schwarzenegger was totally out of sight as the nearly inarticulate Conan. What a glare he had!I don't mean to slight the rest of the cast, all the actors are great. Garry Lopez as Conan's sidekick and Mako as the wizard provide comic relief. And who can forget Max Von Sydow as King Osric. In a world that expected science fiction and fantasy movies to be hokey, grade B schlock, 'Conan the Barbarian' proved that it didn't have to be that way. No small part of what makes the film work are the elaborate sets and cinematography. Director John Milius strove to give the film something of the flavor of a history that could have happened, and succeeded. In addition, he makes up for the lack of dialog by presenting a continuous flow of carefully orchestrated and framed film sequences.I was struck while watching it this time how much the dialog and action work to build the thematic structure. Often events or dialog will foreshadow action to come. In Valeria's death scene, she asks Conan to keep her warm. And in the next scene we find him building and lighting a funeral pyre where no fire had burnt before. In the background, the mound with its sacred stones echoes similar shapes seen throughout the film. This kind of thoughtful work is only to be expected of Milius and De Laurentis, but in 1982, it was far beyond the norm for this genre. Two features are added for the DVD. The first is a running film analysis by Schwarzenegger and Milius, which is every bit as good as the movie itself. A the second is a feature on the film's production done 20 years after the fact. It is quite interesting to hear what the acting and production teams thin about the film in retrospect.Violent and sexy, the film's core is built of constant action and spectacle, with very little dialog. Sudden moments of filmic stillness act to emphasize the intense and often gory fight scenes. This and several moments when there is apparent mistreatment of animals give the film its R rating. Of course, the controversy only added to the film's popularity at the time. Even today, this manages to be a surprising film. By all means make and effort to seek it out."
Good Movie, Great DVD
Chris Peters | Austin, Texas | 10/12/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Conan as a movie is one of the few films that performs the fantasy setting well. Right from the beginning, there is a huge sense of epic scope, with great men shaping and forging a young, wild world. Not a single character in Conan is timid or petty - they all stand like giants in their world. Special effects are rarely used and never seem out of place. While the plot doesn't stray too much from a simple quest for revenge, director John Milius presents everything with such sheer charisma that I couldn't help but smile and soak it all in. This is not Citizen Kane, and Arnold is not Olivier, but the movie is entertaining nonetheless. As a collector's edition, key deleted scenes were added, including a wonderful scene were Arnold does more acting than anywhere else in the movie! Right before the final battle, Conan has a rare moment of reflection on his life of fighting, and wonders at the meaning of it all. The producers thought no one would be able to understand Schwartzenegger, but I had absolutely no problem, and the scene fits the pace perfectly. Overall, the other "new" scenes don't add too much.The "Making of" documentary is great, but the commentary by Schwartzenegger and Milius is priceless. During the scene where Valeria begs Conan to forget his revenge quest against Thulsa Doom and run away with her, Arnold comments in his wonderful Austrian accent, "Here Conan begins to get soft... listening to the women problems..." Classic Schwartzenegger bravado (or arrogance, depending on your view). John Milius is a very intelligent person, and certainly know quite a bit about history and the deep roots that inspired this movie, but I actually felt that Arnold provided the best insights into the film."
Collector's Edition a must for Conan fans
John Patin | LI, NY | 07/24/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Believe it or not, I just spent over five hours with this disk even though I already own the original DVD release. It was worth it. First off, the video is a(much)cleaner and sharper transfer, a marked improvement over the old disk. And the extras are great too. After watching the film the first time I actually sat through whole thing again again while listening to the director's commentary, something I have not done with any other DVD. The extra footage, while only a few minutes, does add something to the ending. I liked it. And Milius' comments about it made me appreciate it even more later. My only complaint might be to wish that the commentary had been extended to the outtakes and deleted scenes. I would have liked to hear more about the deleted King Osric scene and how it was originally intended to fit in the movie. Finally, the documentary "Conan Unchained" was a pleasant surprise. I expected the usual 15 minute "making of" promo dating back to the original release but it is a beefy, informative(and amusing)featurette with many recently filmed interviews with cast and crew. A fan's wish come true. And speaking of wishes, that exchange between John Milius and Arnold about getting together sometime to make a third Conan....YES! Let's get Conan on that throne! Anyway, while we're waiting, we can all watch this one till the sun comes up like I did last night."