Review – Crash of the Sequels (“Wrath of the Titans”, “Clash of the Titans”)

I suppose it was inevitable that a sequel was in order, but it seems that screenwriters Dan Mazeau and David Leslie Johnson decided to go ahead and ape the 2010 “Clash” plot with a few twists here and there. Bad move.

Sam Worthington returns as half-god Perseus – more rugged, more hair – and has a 13-year-old son, Helius (John Bell.) Ah, but life as a fisherman is about to suck when dear ol’ dad Zeus (Liam Neeson) pops up to reveal that nasty Hades (Ralph Fiennes–so good here) has recruited Perseus’ other half-brother Ares (Edgar Ramirez) to resurrect Kronos, the god of gods and destroy the Earth because… Well, I guess that’s just what imprisoned gods do.

Anyway, Perseus needs help, so he hooks up with Queen Andromeda (the beautiful blue-eyed Rosamond Pike) and Poseidon’s crooked, but nutty son Agenor (Toby Kebbell–very funny.) Hades kidnaps Zeus and Perseus needs to find the fallen god Hephaestus (Bill Nighy–clearly having fun here,) who knows the way into Tartarus, the prison where Kronos is and where Zeus is being held captive.

Just like in the 2010 “Clash” movie, Perseus and his venturesome troop have to stave off creatures in order to get to their prize. In this movie, it’s giant cyclopss’ (or is that cyclopsi?) and an ever-changing stone labyrinth worthy of M.C. Escher. Naturally, Perseus comes to the rescue of Zeus, but it’s too late. Faster than you can say, “Release the Kronos,” a molton-lava creature thingy arises and threatens to annihilate mankind, unless…

There are tons of top-notch CGI effects, but the entire third act (Perseus gaining the “Spear of Triam” in order to kill Kronos mirrored him gaining the Medusa head to kill the Kraken from “Clash”) showed a total lack of writing creativity. C’mon, guys, you couldn’t think of something else? Even Bubo the mechanical owl from the 1981 film shows up… again! The only saving grace was this time some attempt at humor injected into the story along with more face time for Neeson and Fiennes, who looked like they enjoyed finally getting a chance to flex their godly wings, so to speak.

Worthington has improved since “Clash” acting-wise, but let’s face it, when you’re surrounded by CGI creatures and a lousy script, there’s nowhere to go but up. I wish him luck and better screenplays – but that’s not the worst part. Want to know the worst part? They left the ending wide open for a part THREE! What are they gonna call that one? “MILKING OF THE TITANS?”

CLASH OF THE TITANS (2010)

Back in 2010, Warner Bros decided to re-make their own 1981 cheesy film that starred Harry Hamlin and Burgess Meredith, but give it a complete CGI make-over repleat with beefcake Sam Worthington as Perseus, son of Zeus (Liam Neeson,) and a more intricate plot. The only hold-over was brief, but altogether comical cameo by Bubo, the gold mechanical owl from the original film. Classy.

The story remains pretty much the same: Perseus engages on a quest with fellow Argonian soldiers to find a way to keep the Kraken (a ginormous water monster) from attacking their fair city instead of sacrificing Princess Andromeda (Alexa Davalos) to the gods as punishment to Hades (Ralph Fiennes in full Voldemort mode.)

Along their perilous journey, Perseus bickers and pouts and whines that, “if I do this, I do this as a man”. It gets old. He could take the stupid magical gifts that daddy gives him and end the damn movie, but does he? Nooooooooo! He has to endanger everyone around him until everyone is dead. Soon, he and the guys bump into the Stygian Witches who tell Perseus that he’ll need the head of Medusa to kill the Kraken, and off they go.

Meanwhile, Hades gets poor exiled King Acrisius (Jason Flemyng), now a mis-shapen creature called Calibos, to deter Perseus and his merry band which leads to a battle royale of giant CGI scorpions.

Needless to say, Perseus gets the head, kills the Kraken, saves the Princess, and finds favor with daddy (Zeus) while pissing-off Hades, who is banished to the underworld ….until a sequel is made….(see above).

Not a bad movie overall, but what sinks it is Sam Worthington as Perseus. He’s all beef and no cake. His “acting” throws the whole movie out of sync and loses its footing from the get-go. Not to mention his Perseus character’s constant whining got to be real annoying real fast. Look, you’re the son of a god, deal with it!

The SPFX are whopping good and damn fine, especially the scorp’s and Medusa. The Kraken, however, was a joke; a large toothy-pudding creature with arms on a stick? Just plain stupid looking. Guys! You spent $125 million on this picture, render a better looking Kraken!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.