4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on May 9, 2004
To watch Conan the Barbarian, of course! Fantasy movies are generally bad. No other genre is looked down upon more. This is because most sword & sorcery films fall into one or more of the following traps:
1) They are dumbed down and bowdlerized to appeal to kids and their uptight parents (Willow, Red Sonja).
2) They are throwaway drive-in style B-movies which at best are so bad that they only entertain as unintentional comedy (Hawk the Slayer, Dungeons & Dragons, The Sword & The Sorcerer).
3) They are other genres disguised as sword & sorcery films such as Ladyhawke, which is a chick-flick and Dragonslayer which is a costume drama and an allegory for the draft in Vietnam.
4) (...) .
Conan laughs at all these inferior sword & sorcery movies. He crushes them, sees them driven before him and hears the lamentations of their fanboys.
While other fantasy movies are made by and for wimpy comic book nerds and effeminate Englishmen (or wannabe Englishmen), Conan was written by tough-guy Robert Howard from the overly macho panhandle of Texas, a landscape that would chew up quaint little hobbits and elves and spit them out. Conan was adapted for the screen by fellow tough-guy writer Oliver Stone and he-man director John Milius. You can tell already that no sobbing midgets need apply. Conan is for the red-blooded American male who enjoys violent entertainment and appreciates tall, leggy, heavily armed blondes.
Conan (Ahnuld) saw his entire community get Klu Kluxed by Rexor (former Oakland Raider Ben Davidson) and Forgrimm (bodybuilder Sven Ole Thorsen), two burly and scary henchmen for the Atlantean wizard Thulsa Doom (James Earl Jones). Conan sees his father torn to bits by armor-plated Rottweilers and Thulsa Doom even beheads Conan's mom as the seven-year-old watches! He is then sold into slavery. This is much better motivation for a story than magic rings, baby pricesses, flying bladed frisbees and other such nonsense.
For the next twenty years, Conan fights his way through one scrape after another and becomes the most fearsome fighter in the world. Along the way, he meets an archer named Subotai and a Valkyrie-like swordswoman named Valeria. Together they pillage one of Thulsa Doom's temples. But killing Doom's acolytes and stealing his gems isn't enough. When King Osric (Max Von Sydow) recruits Conan and his friends to find his daughter who has been brainwashed into joining Thulsa Doom's cult(a cross between Jonestown and the KKK), the fires of revenge are reignited in Conan. And NOBODY puts the smack down on bad guys like Conan! Heads, limbs, torsos and blood fly everywhere as the barbarian gets payback against Doom and his men.
Although there are such huge amounts of gore (including several highly artistic beheadings), it is strangely beautiful in the way it's filmed. Basil Poledouris' beautiful score is one of the best ever recorded and makes the bloodletting seem operatic.
Ahnuld brings Conan to life. Conan is actually a complex character, and somewhat retro. Too many other fantasy films have sensitive girlie-men getting in touch with their feminine side while swinging a sword. Conan laughs at these sissies! He has no time for such silly romance novel nonsense! The others don't even bother with acting or characters at all. In this case, though Schwarzenegger turns in a good performance -so much so that it's hard to think of anyone else in the role.
The real test for how good a movie is would be the villains. Thulsa Doom, Rexor and Forgrimm are perfectly cast and played. They are genuinely menacing and scary. Watching Ben Davidson who is terrifying in spite of only having three lines as Rexor makes me appreciate the dilemma facing the old AFL quarterbacks who played against him. James Earl Jones lends more than just a menacing Darth Vader voice here. He has real charisma and it doesn't seem so farfetched that he could lead young people into joining a cult and committing all kinds of fiendish acts (including turning the cult's victims into soup!). The villains are the most plausible part of this fantasy movie.
The one drawback is the sound. Buy the score on CD if you can, because mono doesn't do it justice. The cinematography is beautiful and the sets and costumes have a gritty real-world look. The weapons and armor are only slightly outlandish. A special thank you should go to Mother Nature, since she provided Milius with the best special effect in the movie: The Spanish countryside. The sunlight shining through the snowy forest at the beginning looks amazing, as do the the vast plains and bleak deserts.
This movie is more than just entertainment, it's a true work of art and it stands the test of time. Twenty-two years later, no other fantasy movie has even come close. And as Conan says "If you do not listen, then to hell with you!"
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 8, 2011
its too bad it took a mediocre remake to get this classic on ray. Picture is excellent, a few nitpickings being this is 1 min 29 sec. shorter than the last dvd version. I don't know why. The cover is a big disappointment as well, they should have stuck with the original movie poster. More supplements would have been nice but overall i am very excited to have this release. As far as the destroyer is concerned i can't bear to buy it since i have tried to sit through it several times in the last year and did'nt have the constitution to do it.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on April 20, 2004
This is the best and most original sword and sorcery fantasy movie ever made. It has a raw and primal style that is simply not seen anymore on film in today's politically correct world.
Think of all the warrior-hero movies made during and since the 1990's - Dances with Wolves, Last of the Mohicans, Braveheart, Gladiator, Superman, Batman, Spider-man, Scorpion King and of course, the ultimate in feminine heroes - the Lord of the Rings trilogy; in every warrior-hero movie made since Conan the Barbarian, the heroes are afflicted with some degree of feminine sensitivity or other characteristics that mark them as "perfect mates" - sensitive and caring 90's males, in other words. Not so Conan the Barbarian.
Conan sees this woman Valeria, gives her the biggest jewel in the hoard that they've just stolen, and off with their clothes they go. Later, after Valeria pleads with him not to go after Thulsa Doom, he leaves her bed anyways. How's that for being the antithesis of the sensitive and caring 90's male, always thinking of the needs of the women? Valeria cries. She chases after him, rescues him, and swears to always be there for him and fight by his side. In the words of John Milius, what a Valkyrie!
More scenes that we would just not see in movies today - the Opening Sequence - Conan's mother, played by the exotically beautiful Nadiuska, is cornered by Thulsa Doom and his henchmen. For just a moment, Doom turns away and seems to offer her pity and mercy, then, THWACK, he cuts her head off! I think in previous viewings, I must have always had my eyes partly closed during this scene, because, watching this DVD, this is the first time that I've actually seen her head (with the light brown hair) fall to the ground at that moment. And in the next scene, her head and that of her husband are stuck on some pikes! Which we see as little Conan and the other village children are marched away to slavery. That's the first time I've noticed that too, watching this DVD.
Yes, and how about the Breeding scene! Conan in his gladiator days, kept in a cage, has a half naked and very worried looking woman shoved into the cage with him! While Conan's keepers stick around outside the cage, gawking, waiting for the show to start!
Some great quotes: "Conan, what is best in life?!" "To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women!" (paraphrasing Genghis Khan).
And Conan's prayer before the final battle - "Crom, I have never prayed to you before. I have no tongue for it. No one, not even you will remember if we were good men or bad, why we fought, or why we died. No, all that matters is that two stood against many, that's what's important. Valor pleases you, Crom, so grant me one request, grant me REVENGE! And if you do not listen, then the hell with you!"
What mainstream director would put stuff like that in a movie today?
The trio of Arnold, Sandahl Bergman, and Gerry Lopez, had just started their acting careers, and made the professional actors in the movie - Mako, Max Von Sydow, and James Earl Jones - look like they were overacting.
But that's the great thing about this expanded DVD. John Milius makes it clear in his commentary that he chose this trio for their physicality and how well their bodies fit into their roles. There was little dialogue - most of the acting was in the way the three main characters fought and carried themselves from scene to scene. The result was much like when Ray Park was chosen to portray Darth Maul in "Phantom Menace" - a spectacular fit.
I knew that Sandahl Bergman was a professional dancer, but the commentaries explain at last why Subotai came across so much like a Southern California surfer dude - Gerry Lopez WAS a Southern Cal surfer dude.
Basil Pouledouris's brilliant, operatic score, without a doubt, was one of the key distinguishing features that set this movie apart from all others. Pouledouris says it best on his website - scoring Conan the Barbarian was like scoring a silent movie - in the first 30 minutes of the movie, 27 minutes had NO DIALOGUE!! He knew that his music had to do the job of the dialogue, and he did perhaps the best work of his career with this movie soundtrack.
There are only a few forgettably bad moments in this classic movie - Valeria's snow bunny/thunder goddess outfit when she saves Conan was just awful. Valeria getting shot by the snake arrow on her RIGHT side, then in the next scene, as she lays dying, Conan pulls out the snake arrow from her LEFT side. The continuity director must have been on drugs that day. Valeria, so fluid and graceful, banging into these chains with her boots as she flips over the balcony right before the fight starts in the orgy chamber. Always wondered why they didn't re-shoot that scene. Valerie Quennessen as the Princess was probably the only miscast character - she comes across as a whiny brat and just has this grim look on her face throughout - couldn't see what Milius was talking about when he cast her because of a "vulnerable" quality about her. But then, she supposedly died in a car accident in 1989, so can't speak too ill of her.
And as we all know now, Arnold IS Conan. Just replace Cimmeria with Austria, and Aquilonia with California...... and, in time, he became a king by his own hand....destined to bear the jeweled crown of Aquilonia upon a troubled brow.....
I watched this movie twice when it first came out in 1982, in my last year of medical school. I didn't realize it at the time, but that would also be the last year that I would be a bachelor with no responsibilities in this world. And so this movie remains forever connected to that time of a carefree existence that no longer exists. Appropriately so, for this is a movie with a raw, carefree attitude that also no longer exists in moviemaking.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on September 27, 2011
It always impresses me to see how good an HD version of an old movie can be. While the image isn't as clear as a brand new digital movie that's been made that way, what we get here is a significant gain in image quality as well a better sound it seems. That being said, this release could have brought together a significant amount of bonus material, the original cover or whatever any Conan fan might want but this, instead, is more of a "casual" Blu-ray release and what you get is the classic fantasy movie with a plenty of languages/subtitles.
The movie itself is one of the best fantasy movies ever made and also one of Arnold's best (even if he only says maybe a hundred words in the whole movie). If you already are a Conan (movie) fan, you really should add this to your collection as it fares much better on the new HDTV as the DVD version does and if you're just curious, you should know that this is very inexpensive for an high definition classic.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 19, 2004
A film by John Milius
What can you say about Conan? Originally created as a pulp novel by Robert Howard, John Milius's film is the first reason Arnold Schwarzenegger became a star. It is a muscle-bound, B-Grade styled fantasy of a film about a warrior named Conan. It is also a good movie, if you like fantasy or movies with sword wielding barbarians. Since I do like those style of films (or books), this was right up my alley.
As a young boy, Conan's parents were murdered by a band of warriors who bore the banner of a serpent. Conan is pressed into slavery and he grows strong because of the physical labor demanded. Perhaps because of his strength he becomes a gladiator fighting to the death, but he always wins and gains acclaim from the crowd. When Conan (Arnold Schwarzenegger) manages his escape, he becomes a thief, robbing treasure and plunder with his partner. Conan comes to the attention of King Osric (Max Von Sydow), who sets Conan on a quest to rescue his daughter from Thulsa Doom (James Earl Jones).
It just so happens that the warriors who murdered Conan's family were led by Thulsa Doom, and Conan recognizes the banner of Thulsa Doom as the banner that flew on the day his parents were killed. We now add little splash of revenge to the picture and the set up to our story is complete.
"Conan the Barbarian" is a cut or two (no pun intended) above average fantasy film. You have magic, swords fighting, some comedy, and a heavily muscled warrior exacting his revenge. This film pretty much defines the genre, and it also set a standard that I'm not sure has been reached since 1982. This is a good movie, though not for everyone.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 21, 1998
A movie that has a lot to answer for. The film "Conan the Barbarian" is not as good as author Robert E. Howard's best Conan tales (see "Hour of the Dragon," "Black Colossus," or "People of the Black Circle") but it is prettty damn good. Far better than its sequel and imitators, with a great score by Basil Poledouris and some nice turns by co-script writer Oliver Stone. Director John Milius is far better than Hollywood has ever given him credit for (see his excellent "The Wind and the Lion," one of my favorites) or the fine recent (1998) cable movie "Roughriders." Milius gives the film a sweep and a tone that comes closer than any other in capturing Howard's dark vision of Conan. With that great last fade out of the bearded Schwarzenegger as King of Aquilonia. Arnold is also very good, probably the best he's ever been. It would be very interesting to see him as an older, wiser Conan in the later story "Phoenix on the Sword." James Earl Jones is a little goofy as Thulsa Doom, and that giant snake looks a little fake for a big Hollywood production but in the end a satisfying viewing experience with lots of little nice moments: the great opening sequence, the Genghis Khan quote, the attack on Thulsa Doom's pleasure palace. END
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 31, 2007
this is a very good movie.it contains lots of action adventure and
excitement.the acting is pretty decent,although acting isn't really the
focal point of this movie or most in the genre.the movie has a pretty
good story that is fairly simple and easy to follow.it's a good beginning
look at Conan,portrayed well by Arnie.this is probably where he is at
his largest size.for a sword and sorcery epic,this movie is pretty
good,although i admit i haven't seen very many.i like the colourful
cast of characters,which add to the story.the movie is fairly dark in
tone,though there are some fun moments.i thought the movie moved along
at a good speed,without seeming too rushed,thus retaining its epic
quality.for me,"Conan The Barbarian" is a 4/5
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 16, 2004
"Conan, what is best in life?"
"To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women!"
The first time you see Arnold Schwarzenegger in the movie, you realize within an instant, that there could have been no better actor to play Conan. Arnie is Conan.
This is one of the best Action/Adventure films of all time, with a great musical score and good directing. The movie, which probably didnt have a huge budget, still comes off with an epic feel to it.
There are few good Sword & Sorcery films out there, this is one of the best. Buy this DVD.
CONAN THE BARBARIAN  [Limited Edition SteelBook] [Blu-ray] [UK Release] Thief, Warrior, Gladiator, King!
Arnold Schwarzenegger stars as the legendary warrior and hero, Conan the Barbarian. When his parents are killed by a band of brutal marauders and the gang's cold-blooded cult leader [James Earl Jones], the orphaned Conan endures a childhood of merciless slavery only to become a gladiator for the amusement of his captors. Eventually set free, Conan begins a dangerous, full-blooded quest to avenge his parents' massacre. Now, the sword-wielding warrior must vanquish his bloodthirsty enemies in this death-defying action-adventure about courage, strength, character and the triumph of good over evil.
‘Conan The Barbarian’ is new to the Limited Edition SteelBook Blu-ray treatment. Thankfully 20th Century Fox UK does know a good thing when they see it for us fans of Arnie Films, as they have finally paid tribute to their early 1980¡äs fantasy classic by giving it the Limited Edition SteelBook treatment in the UK only. ‘Conan the Barbarian’ Limited Edition SteelBook, is adorned with beautiful artwork from the original film poster, a gold embossed title, and a quarter-slip with printed ratings logos.
Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Earl Jones, Max von Sydow, Sandahl Bergman, Ben Davidson, Cassandra Gava, Gerry Lopez, Mako, Valérie Quennessen, William Smith, Luis Barboo, Franco Columbu, Leslie Foldvary, Gary Herman, Erik Holmey, Akio Mitamura, Nadiuska, Jorge Sanz, Jack Taylor, Sven-Ole Thorsen, Kiyoshi Yamasaki, Pilar Alcón (uncredited), Florencio Amarilla (uncredited), Ron Cobb (uncredited), Dragon Dronet (uncredited), Donald Gibb (uncredited), Andrea Guzon (uncredited), Corrie Jansen (uncredited), Celia Milius (uncredited), John Milius (uncredited) and Sab Shimono (voice) (uncredited)
Director: John Milius
Producers: Buzz Feitshans, Raffaella De Laurentiis and Dino De Laurentiis (uncredited)
Screenplay: John Milius, Oliver Stone and Edward Summer (story) (uncredited)
Composer: Basil Poledouris
Cinematography: Duke Callaghan
Video Resolution: 1080p
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audio: English: 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio and English: 1.0 Mono Dolby Digital
Subtitles: English SDH
Running Time: 121 minutes
Region: All Regions
Number of discs: 1
Studio: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
Andrew¡¯s Blu-ray Review: Like its star attraction, the bulging mass of muscles that is Arnold Schwarzenegger, 'Conan the Barbarian' has a one-track mind for fantasy-adventure pandemonium, and it follows through with tons of heart and determination. Though not a faithful adaptation of the Robert E. Howard stories, but the John Milius 'Red Dawn' film interpretation carries a great deal of the enthusiasm and mettle found in those sword-and-sorcery tales. With a terrifically enchanting production value and a simple, light-hearted storyline, this passionate little yarn is a delightful behemoth full of magic, mystery, and scantily-clad, beautiful women. It delivers the perfect blend of cheesy escapism, boorish brawn, and plenty of sword action.
Arnold Schwarzenegger makes his breakthrough performance as the titled character in search of barbarous vengeance. The Austrian champion bodybuilder was by this point a renowned celebrity as a world-class body-defined, winning several competitions, before challenging himself in an acting career, which was off to a very slow start. But it wasn't until his role of the already-iconic Cimmerian slayer that his career suddenly catapulted his unique name to superstardom. And he's the perfect fit for bringing the heroic fantasy to the big screen. Practically bursting at the seams with muscles and with his raspy brusque accent, Arnold Schwarzenegger's portrayal breathes life and dimension into a character that could only previously be imagined by millions of readers.
Set in the fictional Hyborian Age, Conan's quest to avenge the genocide of his people and the murder of his parents commences as a young slave. This is one aspect of the script that is the second one written by Oliver Stone demonstrating his talents as a screenplay writer, which works extraordinarily well in an otherwise straightforward plot. The narrative takes its time to develop and establish a sympathetic character, which for a big part of the story lives in survival mode. Then it shows he is no naturally-born superhero. Conan must learn the art of wielding a sword, and he has a hunger for learning as well as fighting. The man is also flawed, pursuing emerald riches as a thief and content in a lifestyle of gluttony.
Through the course of his journey, Conan meets fellow thieves Sabotai [Gerry Lopez] and Valeria [Sandahl Bergman]. They are a good addition to the story, not only as trustworthy companions but also as an amusing distraction from the fact that Conan is mostly a lone figure. Too much Schwarzenegger in any given movie doesn't necessarily mean a good thing. Remember 'End of Days' and 'Eraser'? Anyhow, filmmakers also bring in the always-charismatic Mako who pulls a double shift as the odd wizard Akiro and the film's narrator. The actor inserts a good comedic element without completely looking the fool. Max von Sydow, too, makes an appearance as King Osric, whose plea to rescue his daughter from a religious cult points Conan in the direction to vengeance and eventual heroism.
The leader to this fanatical sect also happens to be the object of Conan's sweltering retaliation and is played by none other than the remarkably talented James Earl Jones. I was thrown off by his character's final lines where repeats the words father and son several times. No matter, Jones is utterly impeccable as Thulsa Doom, giving the film a certain quality of respectability. And John Milius does great in making James Earl Jones' a really nasty evil villain to powerfully foil a very angry and determined Arnold Schwarzenegger. With a grand musical score by Basil Poledouris which nicely combines traditional symphony with a medieval-operatic quality and a militarised bent, 'Conan the Barbarian' remains an awesome fantasy-adventure epic and one of Arnold Schwarzenegger's most memorable action roles. Hey, I think I just learned how to spell Arnold Schwarzenegger without having to look it up each time. How cool is that!
Blu-ray Video Quality – We now have at last a beautiful stunning fresh re-mastered of 'Conan the Barbarian' and does appear to rejuvenated and dapper this awesome 1080p encoded image. Presented in its original 2.35:1 aspect ratio, the picture displays far better clarity and resolution than its standard-definition inferior DVD counterparts. Contrast doesn't provide much pop, but it's well-balanced and crisp nonetheless. Black levels, on the other hand, are hit-or-miss though generally strong. Night time sequences are noticeably the poorest with average shadow delineation and a good deal of fuzziness. The colour palette is accurately saturated with vivid primaries and nicely-rendered secondary hues. The transfer comes with a thin veil of grain, providing the film with an attractive cinematic appearance. Several scenes show distinct lines in Conan's outfit and armour, and close-ups expose terrific life-like textures in the faces of actors. Foliage and the unusual Pagan architecture are sharply defined. Sadly, there are also many sequences where details don't hold up quite as well, issues commonly associated to the age of the print used. The image has been digitally cleaned up without too much damage and shows some slight ringing around the edges during scenes with high contrast. Overall, the Blu-ray video image is as sharp as could be hoped for, and it's definitely the best presentation ever for this classic sword-and-sorcery epic.
Blu-ray Audio Quality – In the audio department, things only get even better as we have a choice of viewing it in either 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio or 1.0 Mono Dolby Digital soundtrack, that perfectly satisfies expectations. The original monaural design is given new life as it occupies a splendid sense of space and provides the soundstage with a full-bodied presence. There may not be much in terms of rear activity in the 5.1 surround department and the effects that whiz from speaker to speaker, but listeners can enjoy imaging that's highly engaging and feels broad for the majority of the films running time. Though not very dynamic or extensive, the mid-range is crystal-clear with flawless differentiation between the frequencies. Fans can enjoy every clashing and clanging of the swords with terrific clarity. The low-end is understandably limited, but it offers just enough oomph and weight to the battle scenes to make the spectacle enjoyable. Dialogue and character interactions are pitch-perfect and excellently intonated, so we can make out every hilarious grunt and bellow during Arnold Schwarzenegger's fight scenes. Best of all, is the wickedly awesome music from Basil Poledouris is the real winner in the entire mix. The thunderous, symphonic score fills the entire front soundstage and lends itself wonderfully to back speakers with very subtle bleeds. Each instrument is superbly separated and cleanly delivered, and when mixed with the choir segments, the excitement just builds and immerses the listener. The high-resolution track may not compare with contemporary action-packed flicks, but this lossless audio presentation of 'Conan' is simply awe-inspiring and must be listened to at full blast.
Blu-ray Special Features and Extras:
Audio Commentary: Commentary by Director John Milius and actor Arnold Schwarzenegger: Director John Milius and star Arnold Schwarzenegger provide a fairly standard but somewhat dull conversation. The two men spend most of their time narrating on-screen events, with John Milius throwing in a few quips on character motivation. It is clear that Arnold Schwarzenegger has not seen the film in several years, often giggling and stating he had forgotten about certain scenes. On occasion, the two remark on the production and swap stories about on-set shenanigans. On the whole, the audio track is an easy listen, but also rather inconsequential unless one is a hard-core fan of the film.
Special Feature: Deleted Scenes Sequences [480i] [6:00] A collection of six scenes which didn't make it to the final cut.
Special Feature: Art of Steel: Sword Makers and Masters [1080p] [15:00] For those with an interest in the art of sword-making and fighting, this is a cool documentary with interviews of the people at Albion Armorers, the Samurai master who trained Arnold Schwarzenegger and a police officer with an affinity for sword fighting.
Special Feature: Conan: From the Vault [1080p] [10:00] A nice assortment of once-believed lost and forgotten interviews with cast and crew talking about the production and their respective roles.
Special Feature: Conan Unchanged: The Making of Conan [480i] [53:00] This is made mostly from more recent interviews with cast and crew, this engaging retrospect explores pretty much every aspect of the production and its making. It starts with a discussion on the story's origins and Oliver Stone's involvement before moving on to casting and the shoot. The second half is arguably the best with a good discussion on the fight choreography and the old-school special effects. The actors and Milius share their many memories of working with live snakes and performing the many stunts. It closes with a look at the set design, the musical score and thoughts/aspirations of the film and all very good stuff.
Special Feature Documentary: Conan: The Rise of a Fantasy Legend [18:24] Here you get a very nice informative documentary, from several eminent and informative people of the genre in regards to the mythology of Conan. And these include Roy Thomas [Writer of Conan Comic Books]; Steve Leiber [Artist/Illustrator]; Don Herron [Editor, The Dark Barbarian]; Michael Morrocock [Author, The Elric Saga]; Jim Keegan [Artist/Illustrator]; Kurt Busiek [Writer, Conan Comic Books]; Michael Scott Myers [Screenwriter, The Whole Wide World] and James Earl Jones [¡°Thurlsa Doom¡±]. What we see and hear is all these folks talk about how Conan started on its journey through the years, especially when Roy Thomas [Writer of Conan Comic Books] invented the genre when Conan was published in the Weird Tales Magazine. They all also talk about how Conan has evolved over the years and how similar Conan is in the magazine to what is portrayed in the now famous films and how Arnold Schwarzenegger was made for the part. One very interesting remark that James Earl Jones came out with, is that he tells us that Arnold Schwarzenegger informed him and the director John Milius that he was not a trained actor and that he wanted John Milius to just tell Arnie what to do and not try to ask him to speak the words from the script verbatim. So all this is a very interesting and informative documentary. All very good stuff.
Special Feature: Special Effects: Split Screen Video [1080p] [2:00] A cool split-screen comparing the scene when Conan is recovering from his crucifixion wounds.
Special Feature: The Conan Archives [480i] [12:00] Set to the film's original score, this is essentially a still gallery of production drawings and stills, concept art and publicity photos.
Theatrical Trailers [480i] [4:00] Two Theatrical Trailer previews completes the package.
Finally, 'Conan the Barbarian' is not a film that will likely please everyone equally, but for fans of fantasy-adventure epics, this 1984 action fantasy film from John Milius is a classic of the genre, one with a massive devoted following. The sword-and-sorcery film stars Arnold Schwarzenegger in his breakout performance as the titled character, along with the great James Earl Jones as his nemesis Thulsa Doom. Universal offers this Blu-ray edition with great picture and an excellent audio presentation that perfectly captures the original score's drama and excitement. Supplements are the same collection from the DVD, but the package offers a couple of new surprises, making this a worthwhile purchase for Arnie fans everywhere. I think us British have the BEST of both worlds, because all our Televisions and Blu-ray Players are Multi-region, and we get the Limited Edition SteelBooks that are usually only available here in Europe and the UK, plus we get Extras that are not found on the Region A/1 Blu-ray. So all in all this is a MUST have, especially now I have this beautiful handsome Limited Edition SteelBook edition added to my Blu-ray SteelBook Collection. Highly Recommended!
Andrew C. Miller – Your Ultimate No.1 Film Fan
Le Cinema Paradiso
WARE, United Kingdom
WIZARD: "between the time when the oceans drank Atlantis, and the rise of the sons of Aryas there was an age undreamed of and unto this, Conan, destined to bear the jeweled crown if Aquilonia upon a troubled brow."
Conan had his tribe and especially his family dispatched by the evil Thulsa Doom (James Earl Jones.) He is sold into slavery, learns the ways of the world and starts to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger. Now with the help of his sometimes god "Crom" and the enigma of steel he is ready for revenge. We get to go along for the ride.
I had to watch this (1982) movie again now that it has had the blue-ray treatment including a commentary by Director John Milius and Arnold Schwarznegger which gives a good insight as to the purpose and creativity of the film. I was surprised to find out how much of the movie I forgot over the years. Now it is a retrospective.
Remember what was said in Alice, "Anything with a head can be beheaded."
One should contemplate this on the Tree of Woe.