Dwayne Johnson Is The Greatest Hero In History In A Streaming Hit
Dwayne Johnson's Hercules was a hit in 2014, and now it's a hit again on Amazon Prime Video.
Dwayne Johnson looks like he was chiseled out of rock. The charismatic movie star has been on top of the world for years and if he said that Zeus was his actual father, and not former WWF Tag Team Champion Rocky Johnson, most people would believe him. In one of his more overlooked films, Johnson actually did play the son of Zeus, in 2014’s Hercules, which is somehow back in Amazon Prime‘s top ten according to FlixPatrol.
Hercules features Dwayne Johnson as the alleged demigod, joined by a band of mercenaries including Amphiaraus the seer (Ian McShane), Autolycus the rogue (Rufus Sewell), Tydeus the barbarian (Aksel Hennie), and completing the Dungeons and Dragons adventuring party, Atalanta the archer (Ingrid Berdal). The unit is tasked with capturing a wild warlord, Rhesus (Tobias Santelmann), for King Cotys (John Hurt).
Along the way, Dwayne Johnson’s natural charisma carries the film through a battle that turns disastrous for the army of King Cotys. Taking the time to properly train the soldiers leads to better results, with the capture of Rhesus soon following. Of course it’s at that point Hercules notes King Cotys’ daughter, Ergenia (Rebecca Ferguson) is showing mercy to the barbarian warlord, forcing the demigod to deal with problems that can’t be solved with raw strength.
In the summer of 2014, up against Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Scarlett Johansson’s Lucy, Dwayne Johnson’s Hercules made $244 million against a budget of $100 million, making the film a hit. Most of the money came from the international box office which has always loved The Rock’s films. While Paramount won big with a Hercules film, later that year Lionsgate fared much worse with their own version of the Prince of Power, The Legend of Hercules.
In another case of Hollywood Twin Movies, the same year the most electrifying actor on the planet, Dwayne Johnson, starred in a Hercules film so to did the actor with the most chances to lead an action hit, Kellan Lutz. Despite mostly appearing in guest appearances on network procedurals and the Twilight films, the 2010’s were filled with action films starring Lutz that never made a lasting impression on the public. Eventually, in 2019, the star found his calling as one of the leads in FBI: Most Wanted, a network procedural.
Dwayne Johnson’s Hercules was the subject of some controversy after it’s release when movie-goers complained that the film’s trailer, filled with shots of Hercules facing off against the Hydra, were just quick shots of a story being told in the actual movie. Expecting a mythological movie on par with Clash of the Titans, the actual plot was significantly more grounded and could have been about anyone set in any time period as the Ancient Greek setting didn’t play into the plot at all.
In a post-Yesterday world, misleading trailers are being actively avoided to stop potential lawsuits, but in 2014, it was just an annoyance to a vocal minority. While Dwayne Johnson’s Hercules never hit the height of his biggest blockbusters like Hobbes and Shaw or Jumanji, nearly $150 million in profit is nothing to sneeze at. Afterall, eight years later, Johnson would have loved for Black Adam to be that successful.
Hercules is available to stream now on Amazon Prime Video.