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Conan the Destroyer [VHS] [Import allemand]
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Arnold Schwarzenegger returns as Conan, the unconquerable warrior king in this thrilling tale of swords vs sorcery. This time he joins forces with a wizard (Mako), a warrior (NBA star Wilt Chamberlain), a runaway (Olivia DAbo) and a renegade (Grace Jones) to defeat the evil Queen Taramis (Sarah Douglas). When Queen Taramis promises to bring Conans beloved Valeria back from the dead, our hero must first bring before her highness a jewel encrusted horn and a beautiful young princess. What Conan does not know is that the wicked queen plans to use the horn to awaken the demon god Dagoth and sacrifice the princess to him. Faced with enemies both mortal and supernatural, Conan must summon his super human strength to battle Taramis and even Dagoth himself! --Ce texte fait référence à l'édition DVD.
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"Conan le barbare" était une grande réussite dans le genre film d'Héroic Fantasy. Pour "Conan le destructeur" c'est différent. L'histoire n'est pas spécialement captivante et la réalisation est laborieuse, quand à l'univers si particulier de "Conan le Barbare" on ne le retrouve pas du tout dans ce film avec ses décors en carton-patte et ces maquettes mal intégrées. Et ce ne sont pas les costumes kitsch et clinquants qui séduiront les spectateurs.
"Conan le Destructeur" de ces films qu'on regarde en s’amusant quand on est adulte mais qui peuvent plaire aux enfants. Enfin pas aux enfants de moins de 10 ans quand même...
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Video Resolution/Codec: 1080p/AVC MPEG-4 | Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audio Formats: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, French DTS 2.0 Surround
Subtitles/Captions: English SDH, French
Special Features: Trailer
Grace Jones easily steals the movie as the athletic, feisty Zula ("toothpick"), and Wilt Chamberlain makes a good physical counterpart to Arnold Schwarzenegger's Conan. I read somewhere that Schwarzenegger was actually asked to put on more muscles for the role than before, and it shows.
Conan the Destroyer also evokes much more of a sci-fi/fantasy element than the original Conan, which had a much more occult, primitive tone to it. The sequel piles on a one-horned monster and a wizard living in a crystal palace and ups the action further. The swordplay in Destroyer is faster-paced than in the first film, and less bloody -- though still violent enough to make its PG rating a gross misrepresentation.
All in all, well executed "male" entertainment, with a top-flight score and good casting.
So, it should be no surprise then that the second Conan movie was part of a similar back-to-back deal in the early- to mid-1980s. But what is surprising is that the movie that partnered with the rollicking adventure movie was a quirky science fiction blockbuster from David Lynch named DUNE.
That's right, as that big-budget turkey was roasting under the Mexican sun, a pre-Terminator Arnold Schwarzenegger was working on a much more entertaining movie with a colorful cast of characters.
Based (rather loosely) on the series of novels by Robert E. Howard, this 1984 feature was a sequel to the much darker and more sinister 1982 movie CONAN THE BARBARIAN and saw Schwarzenegger reprise his role as the monumentally strong thief and adventurer.
The director of this entry, the veteran Richard Fleischer actually owed his hire for this movie to another movie he had made almost 30 years earlier, 1958's THE VIKINGS. Producer Raffaella De Laurentiis had commented that since they had tried to copy that movies style and look for the 1982 picture, why not hire that movie's director for this production - and so Fleischer was hired.
Once hired Fleischer set about shaping the movie to his liking. One of the most publicized, decisions he made was telling an incredulous Schwarzenegger that he needed to buff up a bit more. Fleischer said that at the time of the release of CONAN THE BARBARIAN he had been disappointed that Arnold's incredible physique had been covered up for most of the movie, Fleischer also consciously set about making this a lighter entry to the series. The Conan here has a number of genuinely comedic moments, from punching a camel, a horse and attempting to teach a beautiful princess how to wield his sword, Schwarzenegger shows early promise in a genre that would not fully be realized until movies such as TWINS and KINDERGARTEN COP.
Joining Schwarzenegger this time is Sarah Douglas (of SUPERMAN II fame) as the evil Queen Taramis who enlists Conan's help in retrieving a crystal and in turn a magical jeweled horn. Former basketball star Wilt Chamberlain is on board also as the towering Bombaata, who is charged with keeping the princess Jehnna, who is destined to bring back the mystical object (played by the impossibly beautiful Olivia D'Abo) a virgin so that she can be sacrificed. Along the way Conan's ragtag group meet up with Zula, played by Grace Jones. The scene that introduced Jones' character sees her wielding a stick against a group of tormentors and reportedly she landed a few strikes sending a couple of stuntmen in the hospital. It was in fact her role here that brought her to the attention of the James Bond producers that in turn led to her starring in Roger Moore's swan song as 007 in 1985's A VIEW TO A KILL. Far from a great acting display her character still provides a number of memorable moments and is one of the movie's highlights.
The special effects are very dated by today's standards and Pat Roach (veteran of NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN and the Indiana Jones movies) makeup as the wizard Toth-Amon guarding the crystal really is appallingly fake-looking. But the movie is a good popcorn flick that is both fun and fast-paced enough that you can easily forgive these lapses.
Interestingly in the audio commentary that accompanied CONAN THE BARBARIAN Schwarzenegger commented that he would be interested in making a third Conan movie. Sadly this has not been forthcoming and now that he looks intent on pursuing political goals it appears less and less likely. A shame.
This movie is nowhere near as good as its predecessor, but it's still recommended for those rainy Saturday afternoons.
The story of "Conan the Destroyer" was by Roy Thomas and Gerry Conway, a pair of writers for Marvel Comics. Thomas was the writer for Marvel's "Conan the Barbarian," often adapating Robert E. Howard's stories, whether they were originally Conan stories or not. The story is a basic quest story where Conan escorts a virgin princess to bring back a powerful gem from a crystal palace, which will then be returned to a queen (Sarah Douglas), who turns out to be evil and wants to sacrifice the princess so the gem can used to summon an ancient demon, at which point wackiness will ensue.
The problem is not in the story, which certainly allows you to string together a series of Sword & Sorcery adventures, but in the casting. The princess is played by Olivia d'Abo, who simply looks too young (i.e., Conan was forever leaving pregnant princesses behind in his various adventures but there is not chance for that sort of chemistry here). Her body guard, Bombaata, is played by basketball Hall of Famer, Wilt Chamberlain, while Zula, the warrior woman who joins the group is played by Grace Jones, the singer/dancer/model/crazy woman. Comic relif, which was relatively absent in the orignal film, is provided by Tracey Walter as Malak. With such casting the descent into camp becomes inevitable. Besides, there is nothing in this film even close to rivaling Arnold's best moments in the original (especially since the final shot of the old King Conan is recycled from the first film).
Those who have actually read the originally Conan stories will also find it rather distressing that Toth-Amon, the great Stygian wizard who was Conan's biggest enemy in the Howard stories, is reduced to a pit stop on this quest (I remember thinking at the time that this was the equivalent of Darth Vader being one of the guys that got dispatched at the Cantina in "Star Wars"). Thomas and Conway were upset by Stanley Mann's final screenplay, as well as the finished film, and ended up turning their story into the graphic novel "Conan and the Horn of Azoth," with art by Mike Docherty (all the names got changed to avoid any confusion).
Ultimately, "Conan the Destroyer" gets three stars because we round down simply to make sure that it is clear that "Conan the Barbarian" was a better movie. Besides, this 1984 film pretty much killed the franchise, although Milius is apparently preparing a 2005 film "King Conan: Crown of Iron," which there being a lot of speculation as to who will play Conan now that Arnold is Governor of Cal-e-fornia (the hot names are apparently all wrestlers).