I watched both Conan movies in one evening, so I’ll go ahead and review them both in one shot.
Conan the Barbarian: Okay, so this is your standard tale of orphan sold into slavery who eventually comes back to kill his parents’ murderer. In this case, said murderer is a startlingly Caucasian-looking James Earl Jones in a bad wig. (I think it was the blue eyes that threw me off.) Along the way Conan picks up a wizard, a thief, and a girlfriend, not necessarily in that order. The special effects are pretty laughable and the acting is mediocre, but it’s a silly little action flick. With lots of bare breasts (and none of them larger than Arnold’s!)
Conan the Destroyer: Conan’s sidekick from the previous movie is inexplicably missing and has been replaced by a wisecracking (and painfully unfunny) coward of a fantasy stereotype. Luckily, he is also joined by the awesomely terrifying Grace Jones. This movie takes itself much less seriously than the previous one, which actually makes for a somewhat more enjoyable flick. I wonder, though, if they’d planned to make a whole series, what with the wizard dude always saying that yes, Conan did eventually find a kingdom to rule, but that’s another story. (Perhaps covered in either Red Sonja or Kull the Conqueror, both of which were originally supposed to be part of the Conan franchise.)
Will you like these two cheesy action fantasy films from the 1980s? Um, yeah, if you like cheesy action fantasy films from the 1980s. Otherwise, probably not.