But what's that really mean? Above and beyond it means that I had many influences growing up. For this entry, my father's influence is the most important.
My father loves arms and armor. He loves history and mythology and the art of warfare. And as any good father would, he shared these passions with me as a kid. I remember him making me wooden swords to play with. We played chess together. And I remember him reading me Greek myths and comic books before bed. He also shared his nerdy love of scifi, fantasy, and horror movies with me.
For all of this, I am grateful. And I am now passionate about the same things.
Spoiler alert: the following statement is not a dick joke. I have a love of swords. And barbarians and slaying and animal pelts and sex and I could go on forever here. As much as I love action movies, I love fantasy flicks and I love a good sword fight.
That said, I have this theory: my love of the broadsword was actually born of my love for "Conan the Destroyer" - a movie I watched many times as a kid. Side note - when I look back on some of the movies I grew up watching, feeling like they are "kids movies", I realize that they really aren't. (Things like "Forbidden Planet", "Legend", and the Conan movies.)
So - as you may know from previous blog entries, I have this constant need for battle movies to be epic. And while some of you may try to argue this point, the Conan movies are gloriously epic: sweeping scores, muscles galore, swords, magic, and of course, slaying. And regardless of what anyone says, I will always love these abominations of film.
Who cares that they have little or nothing to do with the source material?! Who cares that Arnold was a poor casting choice?!! They are quintessentially 80's. And they are solidly epic!
And because of that childhood love, when I heard that they were remaking "Conan the Barbarian", I nearly shit myself. And not out of joy. I was pissed: how dare they screw up (yet another) movie from my childhood?! I refused to see the remake. Wasn't going to happen. Nope. No way. I wasn't supporting this.
And then it came out and somehow I caved in to roommate peer-pressure and found myself in the theatre, griping and prepared to watch another movie I would despise.
Turns out, and you saw this coming, I didn't hate it. In fact, I loved it. Not the Conan I grew up watching but the true barbarian ideal that I love. Much truer to the original Robert E. Howard stories, this is Conan. ::swoon:: Momoa's Conan is stoic, occasionally coy, and brutal.
I actually felt bad for Jason Momoa, who took a lot of heat from viewers as the reason the movie didn't do well. He was everything I wanted in a barbarian and would be more inclined to believe that people didn't love the movie because it's a little "too dark" for your average moviegoer.
My only real gripe with the remake is stylistic; the movie looks like every other action/fantasy flick that's come out in the past 5-8 years. It looks like the "Pirates of the Caribbean". It looks like that atrocious remake of "Clash of the Titans". It looks like "Prince of Persia". It looks like "The Scorpion King". I've complained about this phenomenon before (and it's not something that will ever change as it's part of movies coming together to form a genre) but I'm ready for the new trend.
Okay - wrap up time.
Give me Conan movies, of any era, any day and I'll have a blast watching them. Said otherwise, I love men with big swords.... and that one was a dick joke.