Director: Eric Styles
Scott Adkins /Travis
Nathan Lee /Brandon
Yi Huang/Dr. Lan Zeng
Travis (Scott Adkins) and his team of scientists chase a giant Lizard in China in the name of protecting and studying it while Harker (Dolph Lundgren) and his team of meanie hunters are seeking to kill it. Why? Cause that’s what Harker does… he just kills shit!
When I heard that action kings Scott Adkins and Dolph Lundgren were going to be pit against a giant man-eating Lizard in a film, all I could think was “ Where do I sign?” But when I saw the LEGENDARY trailer, I started to worry that it would be ass. And then I finally saw the movie and learned first hand that IT WAS ass. How the hell could they go wrong with two of the top action stars in one film fighting a giant beastie? Here’s how!
-The CGI was bottom of the barrel. The bear in the prologue of the film looked so silly, I wanted to call it quits right there. The big-bad Lizard fared a bit better CG wise, but its design wasn’t threatening enough and it looked even more fake when it was shot underwater – which of course took away from the film. Hard to be scared or fascinated by something you don’t believe in.
-Scott Adkins and Dolph Lundgren hardly fought each other or others. Why the hell would you nab two action icons and not have them throw down? I’m sure for both action men it was swell to do a movie where they could just hang back, snack on some Doritos and act. But as an audience member, I felt a bit cheated.
-Dolph Lundgren’s character kept repeating himself like a broken record. I get it! You're like a predator in the wild. 10-4! Roger that! Hearing it once was cool, twice was okay… but after the third time… it got played out. Basically, Dolph’s role was a one trick pony. He was a an Alpha male and kept reminding us of it – that's it. And I’m still not sure how he went from a macho hunter with an ego complex to a FULL ON psychopath for the finale. I guess the plot needed it to happen. Yeah...
-The look of the movie was drab! Although the directing had some inspired moments here and there, the cinematography was…well… fairly non-existent. Was there even a DP on this show? I wouldn’t know! Update! There was a DP on hand – his name was Shu Yang.
-Some of the side actors were painfully bad. I won’t name, names… you should know who you are. Back to acting school ya go!
-No tit shots in a schlock fest like this is like having no paddy in a burger. Not tasty.
-The score by Paul Leonard-Morgan didn't do it for me. It went for that “action adventure” vibe but it sounded tacky to me and wound up getting on my nerves. But hey, that's just me. What do I know!
On the upside, the flick did move at an even pace, Lundgren and Adkins were fun to watch onscreen (as always), cutie Crystal Huang was likable, some of the locations (the mountains, the lake) were strikingly beautiful, I dug Lydia Leonard as Katie a lot, there was a charm about her that I found endearing, and director Eric Styles came out of this okay. He did what he could with what he had (most of the money went in the stars pockets I presume, not onscreen). Lastly, even though the action driven finale was obviously made on the cheap, it still managed to be engaging.
On the whole; LEGENDARY was a cheap-jack monster movie that held back on the exploitation elements in favor of an almost “family friendly” like direction. If it wasn't for the boo scares and the fact that the monster messed peeps up; this could have been a flick for kids. It also went OUT OF ITS WAY to have two action stars not do what they do best: action. I say PASS!
Light blood here and there – nothing memorable... to me anyways.
T & A
None. Like NATHING! I was sure we’d get some when that cute chick (Crystal Huang) started giving Adkins the eye – didn’t happen. Sigh...
They should have titled it: Raiders of the Lost Pair! Although it moved at easy pace, displayed beautiful scenery and had the always affable Lundgren and Adkins in it; LEGENDARY failed at being more than just another low coin, limp and somewhat dull C movie. Some gore, a tit shot, more action and Dolph & Adkins whooping some ass would’ve have helped this one! But as-is; only see it if you’re a Lundgren and Adkins completist – others should just re-watch LAKE PLACID or THE RELIC instead. Me, I need to make this right by finally tapping the Adkins starring Ninja 2: Shadow of a Tear.
The original title was "Legendary: Tomb of the Dragon".
Screenwriter Andy Briggs is the brother of screenwriter "Peter Briggs" (Hellboy).