Diverging from the traditional Greek myths; in this story Hercules is the full god son of Zeus and Hera who is kidnapped away by Hades in his attempt to destroy Zeus.
Rating: G (Uh….)
Release Type: Theatrical
+10 for James Woods as Hades. He is an actor with incredible talent and he shined in this movie. (Full disclosure, at first I thought it was Billy Crystal!).
+5 for Danny Devito as Phil. I, uh, had no idea until I was looking at the cast list. I’m always impressed with voice actors where I don’t recognize their voice.
+10 for Bobcat Goldthwait and Matt Frewer as Pain and Panic. Those two little monsters cracked me up so of course, of course they were voiced by these two. But I had no idea. (I’m not so familiar with Goldthwait’s voice as I probably should be, but I know the name. And hilariously I was just watching something with Frewer in it but didn’t pick up that it was him either).
As for Donovan Tate and Susan Egan as Hercules as Meg… I am a fan of Tate’s but I didn’t come out of watching the movie thinking they were the only ones who could have done the roles.
Production (Writing/Directing/Soundtrack, etc…):
+8 for the animation. The animation does look more dated than other movies; however I loved the use of color throughout the movie.
+3 for the script. I had a lot of laughs and was pleased with that, however some of the story line, though, was frustrating. The changes in the standard mythology were a bit jarring. Hera is supposed to be Hercules’ step-mother, etc. But I can understand why they would sanitize much of this for a children’s movie.
+10 for the music. I feel its one of the better soundtracks out there.
+5 just for “Go the Distance” which I’ve loved even before I’d ever seen the movie.
+4 for family friendliness. Generally a G rated movie would get +5, but *I* found Hades and some of his minions highly disturbing. Between that and a couple of gags that *only* the parents would get, I was actually surprised that this rated G. Ah, 1997 was a simpler time, for sure.
+2 for watching again. I’ve only seen this one other time and I found myself laughing enough that I would be willing to watch it again.
+10 for all the jokes that only those who’ve studied Greek mythology will get.
Total Score: 67