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Overall Rating
3.71

Awesome: 27.08%
Worth A Look47.92%
Average: 4.17%
Pretty Bad: 10.42%
Total Crap: 10.42%

3 reviews, 30 user ratings


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Hercules (1997)
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by EricDSnider

"A delightful return to form"
4 stars

For a while there, some people were really worried about the Disney cartoons. The boring "Pocahontas" and not-for-kids "Hunchback of Notre Dame," while lauded by some, were generally not well received, and many people began to think that the Disney animation arm, which was only rejuvenated eight years ago with "The Little Mermaid," was beginning to fall apart again. Were we again doomed to watch things only as good as "The Black Cauldron" and "The Fox and the Hound"?

Fortunately, "Hercules," which opens Friday, shows that the answer is no. "Hercules" is a throwback to the good ol' days of "Aladdin" -- funny, fast-paced, with references to everything from "The Karate Kid" to "I Love Lucy," and some dead-on satire of merchandising, mass-marketing, and the icons we falsely consider to be "heroes."

Part of the charm of this movie is that Hercules is such a rare item: A three-dimensional, sympathetic MALE character in a Disney cartoon. Quasimodo and Beast were sympathetic characters, but only in a freakish sort of way, and we never saw much of Aladdin's feelings. Hercules, with his bouts of isolationism and loneliness, seems so human and so real. He seems like a guy you could get to be pals with, someone so nice that he would never crush your skull with his bare hands, even though he could.

Most of the singing is done gospel-style, which is fine, but gospel isn't very imaginative or creative, music-wise. This means that instead of having three or four great, hummable songs (remember all the good stuff in "Beauty and the Beast" and "Aladdin"?), there are maybe two.

I really like "Go the Distance," the inspiring, I'm-gonna-make-it-someday song young Hercules sings, but Michael Bolton's version over the closing credits ruins it. Not only is it the worst part of the movie, it's also the worst crime ever perpetrated against humanity.

Three things make this a particularly original Disney movie: The characters are drawn stylishly, rather than realistically; there are TWO two-parents families, with no deaths among them; and the villain is more funny than scary.

Furthermore, the theme, as stated by Zeus in the movie, is the best yet: "Being famous is not the same as being a true hero." In this day of over-blown basketball stars and false celebrity gods, it is important that we learn what a real hero is all about. This point is well-made without being beaten into us or turned into a cliche. Overall, it adds to the general feeling of warmth and charm that defines the movie.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=352&reviewer=247
originally posted: 08/08/05 17:58:56
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User Comments

10/22/15 WALTER The best Disney film since Beauty And The Beast. 5 stars
9/21/12 Kcaj Loved it as a kid. Bit tame now but still likeable 4 stars
10/20/11 Magic This bastardisation of Greek myth still manages to be entertaining. Miracles happen. 4 stars
2/10/10 JM Synth Disney gets "hip"; smarm overload. Enjoyed it then, but not one that stands up in adulthood 2 stars
5/12/09 Dr.Lao The 90's were a bad time for Disney, and this silly bit of fluff shows why 2 stars
8/25/08 human bestest best disney movie best music 5 stars
4/25/08 Abbie This film is one of the best disney movies ever. Its amazing and i LOVE it. xx 5 stars
4/01/08 Quigley Amusing, dark and very cool. A great Disney film. James Woods is spetacular 5 stars
3/30/08 Pamela White a total flop 1 stars
11/15/06 vela good film nice music great preformance by the ''acters'' 5 stars
9/09/06 Michele cute music 5 stars
6/20/06 Herculade Sharp, fast-moving, funny, and Meg rocks. Gaining more admirers over time. 5 stars
12/09/05 Angizzle My Favorite Movie!!!! I Love It!!! It Teaches About My Favorite Subject, Mythology and its 5 stars
11/22/05 Kurtis J. Beard Delightfully pleasant. 3 stars
8/20/05 Carolyn Rathburn Now this is a cartoon. Disney always does a lovely job 4 stars
6/21/04 asian dude i shit out things more worth looking at than this movie 1 stars
4/19/03 Ubu the Ripper Another great Disney flick. 5 stars
11/23/02 Charles Tatum Disney strikes out again 2 stars
2/04/02 April I adored this movie despite it's from that sack of shit Disney Corporation! 5 stars
12/11/01 Jenny Myszkowski One of my all time favorite Disney Movies, it is fast and hilarious, and I love the songs! 5 stars
11/03/01 Andrew Carden Extremly Great Soundtrack With Magnificant Animation. 5 stars
4/09/01 Gary This isn't worthy of "Disney masterpiece" status, but it's still a good movie for the kids. 3 stars
2/25/01 *~Danielle*Ophelia~* (formerly KyLe*BrOfLoVsKi) That'll teach y'all to scrape Walt Disney's toilet bowl for ideas! 2 stars
2/15/01 lisa hercules hercules! 1 stars
11/20/00 The EVIL Penguin lacks disney charm; watch something else 1 stars
10/27/00 viking Greek "tragedy" !!! 2 stars
3/19/00 David Rogers What happened? It went waaaaaaaay to fast. 1 stars
9/28/98 Heather Wonderful soundtrack, and Meg is the best Disney female in a long while! 5 stars
8/24/98 The Capital City Goofball I wanted to buy the McDonalds figures, but I'm like that. 4 stars
8/17/98 {{{OZ}}} It was good. Some good moments. But nothing way special. 4 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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  27-Jun-1997 (G)

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