Clash of the Titans (2010)

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9-17-2010 9-18-49 AM.jpgThe recent remake of Ray Harryhausen's 1981 mythological adventure film Clash of the Titans (which I reviewed here some time back) follows the basic plotline of the original, but with a much different tone. 

As in the '81 version, the reluctant warrior Perseus (here played by Avatar's Sam Worthington) undergoes a series of adventures to battle a variety of bizarre creatures (including giant scorpions and a Godzilla-sized Medusa) to prevent the lovely Andromeda (Alexa Davalos) from being sacrificed by the city of Argos to the Kraken.  The Argosians are doing this so that Zeus (Liam Neeson), Hades (Ralph Fiennes) and the rest of the Gods above will forgive them for abandoning worship of them (the Gods).   

But, besides the almost delirious pace of this version, which has a much less leisurely feel than the original, this Clash is harder and edgier in it's approach.  Perseus here isn't motivated to rescue Andromeda out of love (he likes her, but..) as he is out for revenge against Zeus (his natural father) and the scheming Hades (who killed Perseus' adoptive family just for the -sorry!- hell of it).  We see Perseus developing as a character during the story like in the original, but we never forget that Worthington's dark protagonist would prefer the downfall of the Gods over the lives of others (including Andromeda), which makes his take on things more interesting than the sedate, laid-back attitude of  Harry Hamlin's  Perseus in the first film. (Hamlin's Perseus was more of a "nice boy" than Worthington's.)

Yep, there's lots of action, including the aformentioned giant scorpions, as well as other adventures (though the Medusa sequence here, while exciting, isn't as gripping as the original's).  Plus Perseus does kinda get a romantic interest in the immortal Io (Gemma Alterton), which will probably make Greek Mythology scholars pull their hair out.  (Not that both versions are exactly faithful to the source material anyway.) But the 2010 Clash of the Titans (reserve it here) is exciting, with a terrific cast (including Mads Mikkelsen from Casino Royale) and a lot of fun!  (A sequel has already been announced BTW.)

Fans of Ray Harryhausen take note:  Several of the sequences in this film are unabashed homages by director Louis Leterrier and his screenwriters, as are some of the sets, to Harryhausen's classic films, including 1960's Mysterious Island, 1963's Jason and the Argonauts and all three "Sinbad" films, among others.  (Look also for a quick cameo by one of the characters -if you can call him that- from the 1981 film.)

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Ed published on September 16, 2010 10:18 PM.

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