In 79AD a gladiator slave (Kit Harington) and a noblemans daughter (Emily Browning) kindle an unlikely passion, hindered by social station, a corrupt Roman senator (Kiefer Sutherland) and an exploding mountain (Vesuvius).
"The mountain grumbles from time to time,” growls Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. That’s as subtle as the foreshadowing gets in this thuddingly obvious disaster romance, unfolding beneath Vesuvius during its most famous eruption. Game Of Thrones’ Kit Harington is the horse-whispering, Celt, super-warrior slave protagonist, given Conan’s (movie) backstory, a 300 set of abs, and speech-bubble dialogue that similarly defeats the entire cast. The combat is crunchy but also bloodless, and while there’s undeniable spectacle in the gonzo third act’s CG destruction, the 3D throws surprisingly few rocks at your face.
Over-reaching and unintentionally amusing, this is straight-to-video quality inexplicably delivered at blockbuster scale. A thunderous volca-NO.