WARNING: CONTAINS MASSIVE SPOILERS
1. Killing Two Snakes with One Hercules
As a child, Hercules is shown lying in bed. The narrator discusses how his birth is the result of Zeus’ infidelity to his wife/sister, Hera. He is the child of Zeus and a mortal woman. The camera zooms in on the face of Hera’s statue. Suddenly, two snakes crawl out of Hera’s eyes and make their way towards the sleeping Hercules. Despite the fact that he is Hercules, he seems vulnerable as a kid, and the snakes are getting closer. A crunching sound is heard, and we think it’s Hercules being bitten. However, the next shot reveals that a juvenile Hercules has strangled the snakes, holding them in each of his hands with a grin. If that isn’t an amazing introduction, I don’t know what is.
2.Then I Took an Arrow to the Skull
Hercules, his crew and his army are about to face a band of barbarians. They arrive at a ransacked and massacred village. All of a sudden, the barbarians pop up from the grown like blood-thirsty zombies, ready to destroy the army of Hercules. Hercules reaches over to Atalanta and breaks off the tip of one of her arrows. We aren’t quite sure why he did this, and it seems like a random action. Just like that, one of the barbarians rushes towards Hercules like a rabid wolverine. Just when he reaches the demigod, Hercules delivers a point-blank-punch to the barbarian’s face. As the barbarian falls to the ground, we see something stick out of his head and realize the awesome truth: Hercules just punched an arrow into his skull. That is quite possibly the most epic punch in all of cinema history.
3. I Shall Die in a Blaze of Glory...Just Not Today
[Hercules](movie:365390)’ dear friend Amphiaraus has revealed that his death has been prophesied to come soon. In this midst of their battle with the warlord Rheseus, Hercules’ forces are showered by a rain of flaming arrows. Certain that this is his fate, Amphiaraus decides to go down in a (literal) blaze of glory. He spreads his arms and closes his eyes as the arrows rain down from the sky. In a reliably epic slow-motion shot, the camera revolves around Amphiaraus as the arrows rain down. However, in what seems like a gift of mercy from the gods, the arrows miss. It is almost as if Amphiaraus himself is deflecting the arrows. Once the last arrow hits the Earth, Amphiaraus casually says: “Maybenot.”
4. I AM HERCULES!!!
After being misled and betrayed, Hercules and his crew are taken prisoner by the evil Lord Cotys. In a scene that made Dwayne Johnson pass out eight times, Hercules is bound by metal chains as he is taunted by King Eurystheus. The evil lord then brings out his daughter Ergenia to be executed in front of Hercules for her betrayal. As the helpless woman writhes in agony, Amphiaraus encourages Hercules to embrace his destiny as a demigod and break free of the chains that bind him. This leads to the much anticipated line: “I AM HERCULES!” right before he pulls the chains off of the stone they are bound to. He leaps into the air, carrying his chains with a broken chink of stone attached to each. He descends upon the executioner and kills him instantly with the chains, rescuing Ergenia in the process.
5. All's Well that Ends Well...Unless You're Evil.
In the final scene, Hercules has been cornered by Lord Cotys’ brainwashed army. He and his crew crowd a statue of Hera, the goddess that legend says wants Hercules dead. With all of his strength, Hercules takes hold of the base of the statue and pushes upwards. After what seems like a minute of straining and pushing, Hercules finally lifts the statue. The statue starts to crumble, sending the rubble to crush the army below, as well as Lord Cotys himself. With the sinister lord crushed underneath Hera, Hercules finally takes charge of the army he spent so much time training. What an excellent way to end a movie like this.