MOVIE REVIEW: Forget the Titans, Read the Myth

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I will say it once and I will say it again, Hollywood STOP–PLEASE STOP remaking the classic films we love and enjoy. You turned a cheesy cult classic from the year I was born and made it into a two hour snooze fest that no one would enjoy unless you have seen the original.  The original 1981 classic is remembered for three distinctive things. It featured the stop-motion monsters of legendary puppeteer Ray Harryhausen. Second, it featured a ham performance of Sir Laurence Olivier. Finally, we get to see a pre-L.A. Law Harry Hamlin as Perseus. I can enjoy the original with just the magic and the myth with a hearty chuckle. Twenty-nine years later, this remake can only make me cringe.

To catch you up on Clash, the story is about the ancient Greeks who decided they had enough of the gods being in power. They crippled Zeus’s statue and declared war on the all-powerful gods. Zeus (Liam Neeson) decides to create the demigod Perseus (Sam Worthington) who will play a key role throughout the film. While Zeus cared for mankind, his younger brother Hades (Ralph Fiennes) despises his older brother and wants to punish the Greeks in his own way. Meanwhile, Perseus was adopted by Spyros and Marmara who raised him as their own brethren. Spyros has set up the whole movie by saying the line that “One day, someone is going to have to take a stand.” We can see where this is heading. While the Greeks were praising that man was better than the gods, Hades caught wind of this and decided to put the Athians in their place. He will release the dreaded monster, the Kraken, in three days unless their people sacrifice their beautiful princess Andromeda.  

Director Louis Leterrier, who directed action films like Transporter 2 and Unleashed, has directed a Clash where the dialogue was halfway skewered, the action scenes were too fast or too boring, and the 3-D aspect was unnecessary. It was bad enough that we had the latest Hollywood “It” boy from down under starring in three blockbusters within the last 12 months. Have you noticed that Worthington is nearly the same person in every film? In Terminator: Salvation, Avatar, and Titans — a young man who is lost at first but ultimately finds his true destiny. For Titans, Perseus wants to defeat the Kraken as a human, not as the god he is. The journey could not pique our interest of the gallant quest.  Neeson’s portrayal as Zeus, King of the gods, cannot strike the audience with even one lightning bolt. Even the soon to be famous “Release the Kraken” line spoken by him was not as powerful as it should be. The scene could have been much better with some more dialogue between him and the other gods. The only good acting I saw in the movie was the forever young starlet Io played by Gemma Arterton. She may have been the eye candy in Titans but she also gave a good performance of a goddess who was always watching over Perseus even in times of grave danger. In fact, Io helped lead the team of ragtag warriors through giant scorpiochs and the evil Medusa on their way to stop the Kraken from destroying their home of Athos.

To paraphrase an old saying, “3-D, we don’t need no stinkin’ 3-D”! The third dimension scenery represented in Titans is by far one of the worse representations I have ever seen. If you are going to put any movie out on 3-D, at least give the audience some explosions, get up close to the action, or have some eye-catching excitement. The so-called 3-D action scenes were lacking the quality, the strength, and the wow factor of a true 3-D film. If I were you, I recommend that you save money by watching the good old 2-d version instead of wasting money on a crappy, pointless 3-D Titans.

Somewhere in the back of my mind, I can hear Io telling me to “Calm the Storm.” However, the remake of Titans seems more like a bad Ancient Greek soap opera on the History Channel then the action film the title suggests. We can only hope that with current film technology, it can make a cult classic brand new. If there was failure in 2010 action movies, this would be a great start! When it comes to my review of a remake that doesn’t make the cut, I usually recommend the original film or television series. In the case of Clash of the Titans 2010, I would suggest instead that you take a long journey to the local library and read about Greek mythology. It’s worth the read and no money is wasted.

That’s my revue and I’m sticking to it!

FINAL GRADE: D

EM Review by
Dean Rogers
Originally Posted 04.02.2010