Movies: How Do You Like Your Hercules?

The Rock will play the demi-god in Hercules: The Thracian Wars by terrible director Brett Ratner (who recently won a prize from GLAAD for deciding not to be a homophobe anymore. *gag* How about we give prizes to people who are our champions instead? Enough with the grovelling!). The Rock gives good fun screen presence but that title makes it seem like one of those dreadfully serious action films for whom fun is Kryptonite. Meanwhile Kellan Lutz, who has as of yet never exhibited anything like The Rock's screen charisma, will star in Hercules 3D for director Renny Harlin whose career has seen better days but he's capable of a certain over-the-top campiness that might better suit the material (Have you ever seen The Long Kiss Goodnight? Geena Davis sharp shoots while ice skating!)

I prefer my action heroes more slim but Hollywood never has. They're still looking for the Heir to Schwarzenegger & Stallone and the other cartoon-muscled giants of the 1980s. The search has never quite paid off since the hyper-manly hero has been replaced by the Traditional Superhero in the public imagination. Now, even if you have a sickening body like, say, Ryan Reynolds they still feel the need to replace it with fake looking CGI muscles (the worst of Green Lantern's many sins).


Where was I? Yes, Herculean Strength. Who is your dream demi-god? 1950s Hercules Beefcake Steve Reeves, the Disney Hero who went the distance (drawn by David Kawena), Kellan Lutz, or The Rock?


 roadSpeaking of superheroes… artist Kevin Wada gives the X-Men ladies fashion makeovers.

 roadThere's a real argument to be made they Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel were the proto movie-bloggers. I'm not religious but I like to think that Siskel and Ebert can now share a cloud in heaven and bicker about the aesthetics of the Pearly Gates. I was devastated a dozen or so years ago when Siskel died and Ebert, too, shall be greatly missed. RIP.

 roadDid you catch the series premiere of Hannibal, yet another variation on the endlessly troublingly popular serial killer genre? This review is spot-on.

 roadAnd speaking of horror remakes, here's the new Carrie trailer starring Chloe Moretz and the great Julianne Moore (whose greatness does not generally involve the choosing of projects). They're all gonna laugh at it; there is just no replacing Sissy Spacek and her dirty pillows!

 roadHere's a fun variation on "character posters" that ubiquitous marketing trend for genre pictures (and even regular dramas like The Great Gatsby). Snowpiercer, a new sci-fi drama from the great Korean director Bong Joon-ho has released passports for all of its main characters

Nathaniel Rogers would live in the movie theater but for the poor internet reception. He blogs daily at the Film Experience. Follow him on Twitter @nathanielr.


  1. David Hearne says

    So are all the people who got their panties in a knot because Satan was played by an Obama lookalike in The Bible now going to get upset because Hercules is being play by a Somoan actor?

  2. tico says

    I go with Kellan. Not because Duane is black, but because he’s old…and he’d look weird with hair.

  3. Taylor says

    Hopefully, they will reverse the heinous recent trend to keep Hercules completely covered in fugly clothing.

  4. renee says

    How about Ryan Gosling reprising his version of Hercules. I mean he was the teen Hercules after all. Or its beneath him now that he’s a Serious Box Office star…..

  5. Randy says

    The disney version (or rather, a certain artist’s rendition of the disney version) is my choice.

  6. Jake says

    I got the same reaction straight guys got from women’s “tits” from boys biceps. Muscles made me gay from an early age, Nothing turned me on more. That was the one thing I couldn’t deny in pretending to be straight.

  7. Bama Man says

    It is funny to me how anytime an out gay public figure is featured on here it’s nothing but relentless bashing (Niel Patrick Harris, Anderson Cooper, Adam Lambert, Ricky Martin) but post a picture of any straight guy, especially shirtless, and see how gay guys fawn over them. It’s actually one of the reasons our community is so heavily held back.
    Our fixation with worshipping any and al straight men, and bashing the crap out of ANY and all successful gay men.

  8. Gio says

    who cares? we have actual legit LGBT issues worth fighting for, speaking about, and be concerned toward.

    Which hetero actor is picked to make $30 million to read a few lines and take off their shirt doesn’t really concern me much.

  9. David Hearne says

    Traditionally Hercules is played by a gay for pay actor is he not? Find us a good one!

    But seriously, as a child I watched the Hercules and gladiator movies all winter long. I even liked the Hercules cartoon. I really don’t care if the actor is gay or straight. Saying that we prefer to fawn all over a straight actor is silly unless we’re also being offered a gay actor of better quality.

  10. Jake says

    Gay men can be built as well. It has nothing to do with straightness, although many attractive built gays are so obnoxious and vain you wouldn’t want to go near them. Won’t name names — but many in Hollywood. Straight guys have a natural beauty, because they are not trying. Doing a straight boy is the height of erotic — yes straight – not gay.

  11. Tom Cardellino says

    “Fawning over a straight actor” is just realistically not happening. How close to any straight or gay actor do you think any common man or woman could get to a star to actually fawn over them? As to that dated photo of Kellan Lutz before he started taking an extreme regimen of steroids that have him all facially bloated and artificially “pumped up,” well this particularly framed choice is a false one. And, yes, I agree that this level of discourse should be limited to TMZ or similarly trite websites, despite my needing to express my dismay at Lutz’s use of steroids lately. But what can I say about which websites I choose to frequent: I’m here; I’m queer; and I hope I don’t have to get used to this tabloid level of Towleroad.

  12. Taylor says

    We are elated to see the long-overdue comments here demanding that all sexually provocative pictures and writing dealing with cys males be eliminated! The very idea of worshiping images of scantily clad muscular males is abhorrent to the queer/trans/non-gender community. Gay males must be shamed into renouncing their obsession with male bodies because it flies against the facets of our new androgynous world where any and all expressions of traditional masculinity must be eradicated as the evil they are.

  13. Polyboy says

    David Hearne: That first comment… get back on your meds. Your trolling is now nonsensical.

  14. V-8 says

    why do people think The Rock is black? he’s Polynesian, right? is this just a way to lump all non-whites into one group?

  15. johnny says

    “Joe Manganiello IS Hercules!”

    Yes. I second that.

    And I like my Hercules with some hair on ‘im. Considering he was a Greek from the middle east, he’d be way hairier than the smoothies shown here.

  16. Dastius Krazitauc says

    Carrie: No, both Sissy Spacek and Piper Laurie became iconic in those roles, but I still like to see material revisited and interpreted. So I’m looking forward to the new Carrie. But, I have to question the casting of someone as pretty as Moretz for the role of Carrie. Do girls that slim and pretty get picked on to the extent Carrie was? Spacek was nice-looking, but she had a peculiar look which worked. In this clip Moretz doesn’t look very troubled, just generically pretty.

  17. bobeau says

    neither. they are too old.

    well, they can perform the part but they won’t be Hercules.

  18. iban4yesu says

    “…the endlessly troublingly popular serial killer genre…”
    I liked Hall because of his gay character in 6F Under, but when I saw those damn blood splattered ads of that damn Showtime(which had pissed me off with that appallingly racist Queer As F%$k, covering city buses, I was totally turned off of that slasher series altogether!)
    Then, there’s Hall blathering about how playing a serial killer is much better than having to kiss a fellow male actor!

  19. iban4yesu says

    “I go with Kellan. Not because Duane is black, but because he’s old…and he’d look weird with hair.”

    Suit yourself. Some men are like wine, blah, blah, blah…. By the way, it’s Dwayne! (We have a well known gay African American photographer in San Francisco, DUANE Cramer, tho’ : )

    They’ll probably have to cover up those fab tattoos, so I totally volunteer to rub the concealer on them, with the uttermost loving care! LOL

  20. says

    Sorry, but Lou Ferrigno will always be the definitive movie Hercules to me.

    The best Hercules of all is the hot, bearded bisexual version by Marvel Comics. Book it, done.

  21. Hagatha says

    V 8 – I have no idea how Dewayne identifies. He’s as much black as he is anything else, is he not?

  22. Hagatha says

    Polyboy – Your lack of interest or observation on this issue it not a measure of my sensibility. Recently there were complaints that Ben Afflect played Tony Mendez (who today looks more like an Eastern European professor than a Mexican CIA agent). Then there were the complaints that Satan was cast as black and/or arab. People complain that gay roles are played by straight actors and presumably someone is upset that straight roles are played by gay actors. It’s not unreasonable that someone might expect the complainers to be consistent in objecting to Hercules being played by a hybrid Negro and/or Asian Pacific Islander.

  23. Jake says

    jjose717: The hose takes time for a compliment. English must be his second language.

  24. Polyboy says

    So… David Hearne = Hagatha?
    You should manage your sock puppets better.

    Your so called sensibilities lack significant nuance, giving the impression that your sweeping generalization is actually insightful.

    The problem with the “Bible” was that Satan could double for the sitting President of the United States. It was a problem when cast of GWB’s head was used in Game of Thrones, and it’s a problem now. Except now, no one got actually fired.

    No movie sourced on Greek myth in recent memory has used anyone who looks vaguely Greek: Immortals, Clash of the Titans, Wrath of the Titans, Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief… etc.

    So your concern trolling smacks of the usual mix stupidity and baiting that seems to invade on weekends.

  25. Jerz says


    Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is African-American and Samoan. His dad is black and his mom is Samoan.

  26. Hagatha says

    Polyboy – Hagatha and David Hearne are not socks. Hagatha is my name on one computer and David Hearne is my name on the other.

    So you think that the actor shouldn’t have gotten the part because of his ethnicity and resemblance to Obama? I’m sure he appreciates that.

    As for whether actors who have played Hercules “look Greek” , Alexander had light hair and blue eyes.

  27. Bravo says

    Doesn’t matter. The Rock is a far better actor than Lutz, which actually isn’t saying much, but either way both movies are going to suck. That’s pretty obvious considering these are the choices we have here.

  28. jaragon says

    Manganiello would make a fine Hercules- actually he would be fine in any role that requires him to be naked- The Rock is not an actor he is a very popular movie star that can go from Disney to much darker action drama like “Snitch”

  29. Jim says

    If the Rock stepped into your shower and you had to soap up his pecs. I think you might change your opinion.

  30. Jack M says

    The Rock’s tattoos kind of distract from the Hercules idea. I’m sure Herc would not have any.

  31. Maleka says

    Steve Reeves was the best. So classy. Dwayne Johnson ruined his bod with that hideous tatoo!