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Clash of the Titans (2010 film)

A 2010 remake of the 1981 film, directed by Louis Leterrier

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Greek Mythology Has Never Looked So Good

  • Apr 2, 2010
Rating:
+4
While I've never agreed with the idea that only bad movies should be remade, the 1981 version of "Clash of the Titans" is a perfect example of why such statements are valid. This new 2010 version is, quite simply, a better film. It features special effects that are convincing, and with all due respect to his fans, the same cannot be said about the Ray Harryhausen claymation of the original. It tells a story that's equally preposterous but far less campy. The characters, while lacking any real depth, are given lines that no longer border on embarrassing. And the action sequences are much more exciting, in large part because of the aforementioned special effects, which are now presented in 3-D. When compared to the original, there really is no comparison.

As a standalone piece, however, it certainly isn't without its weaknesses. The story, while relatively easy to follow, is painfully short on detail, and it generally seems at a distance from the Greek mythology on which it's based. It's nothing more or less than a showcase of CGI, which means you're meant to look at it but not really think about what's going on. I don't mind this, as long as my senses aren't being assaulted; unlike recent big budget effects extravaganzas like "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" and "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra," "Clash of the Titans" allows the audience to take in its visual delights, to savor the effort that went into them. One can watch it and actually be entertained.

The story focuses on a demigod named Perseus (Sam Worthington), born as the result of an affair between a mortal queen and the god Zeus (Liam Neeson). When his beloved adoptive family is killed at the hands of Zeus' wicked brother, Hades (Ralph Fiennes), Perseus vows that he will have his revenge. He then ends up in the seaside city of Argos, where Queen Cassiopeia (Polly Walker) angers the gods by daring to claim that her daughter, Andromeda (Alexa Davalos), is more beautiful than the goddess Aphrodite. In response to this, Hades gives her two options: Either Argos will be destroyed by a monstrous sea creature known as the Kraken, or Andromeda will be sacrificed. Thus begins Perseus' heroic journey, one that will take him from the cave of the Stygian Witches to the ruined lair of Medusa.

Keeping continuous watch over Perseus is Io (Gemma Arterton), priestess for the goddess Hera. Why she's compelled to protect him is never adequately explained, although I suppose it has something to do with Zeus, who can't seem to decide whether or not Perseus should be helped or harmed. Why harmed? Because he, like the entire city of Argos, has turned his back on the gods and no longer offers his prayers to keep them sustained. I personally find that very immature coming from omnipotent beings, but then again, we find much immaturity and vengefulness in Greek mythology. Consider Artemis: Because a commander named Agamemnon killed a sacred stag, she wouldn't let him or the Greek Fleet sail to Troy unless his daughter, Iphigenia, was sacrificed.

I digress. The truth is that "Clash of the Titans," while hardly a great movie, succeeds at being exactly what it wants to be. One can easily admire the work that went into the visuals, the makeup, the costumes, and the action. One of the most exciting sequences involves a disfigured king named Acrisius (Jason Flemyng), whose body has been fortified by Hades himself; when his blood drips onto the sand, it results in the creation of gigantic scorpions, which then flail wildly as Perseus and his men attack with full force. I couldn't help but feel a little disappointed when it's eventually discovered that these beasts can be tamed and ridden like horses. Where's the fun in that?

And then there's the final sequence with the Kraken, featured prominently in the ads. The ensuing battle is surprisingly short, which, considering the level of technical wizardry on display, is a bit anticlimactic. Still, what little we are shown is exhilarating, aided greatly by the 3-D technology.

Sometimes, it's fun to see a movie that doesn't require the audience to think. It merely wants to entertain you, to take you on a two-hour journey away from life. That's exactly what "Clash of the Titans" did for me; it's an escapist film, a delightful distraction that consistently kept me involved. You don't often come across remakes that outshine their predecessors. Then again, when you consider how bad the original "Clash of the Titans" was, director Louis Leterrier and the screenwriters didn't have to try all that hard. It sort of makes you wonder, then, why no one thought to wait until now to make this into a movie. If we learned anything from the Ralph Bakshi version of "The Lord of the Rings," it's that we shouldn't force a movie into existence before the technology is available to do the story justice.

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October 20, 2010
This can be fun as long as you forget the fact that it was supposed to be a portrayal of Greek myth. I dunno, I had mixed feelings about this one. Thanks, Chris for the great write up.
 
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More Clash of the Titans (2010) reviews
review by . April 02, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
3D Promotional poster
   Most of us know a little about Greek Mythology and even more of us have seen the 1981 classic film “Clash of the Titans” based on the tale of Perseus. Many would argue that the classic movie needed an update given our advancements of visual effects while many would say to leave the original film alone. I do think that the story of Perseus needs a film update, as long as it remains faithful to Greek Mythology. Ok, the 1981 film wasn’t 100% faithful to its source material, …
review by . July 19, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
*1/2 out of ****    I'm starting to think it's nigh impossible to make a good "Clash of the Titans" movie. The first - and unfortunately not last - was from 1981 and failed to leave anything of an impression on me aside from a few yawns and my admiration for the stop-motion work that gives the film a great deal of its fans. Now there's the 2010 version, directed by Louis Leterrier, which really doesn't have much of a reason to exist other than to upgrade the visual thrills of …
review by . January 22, 2011
This film was stupid, poorly acted, essentially Hercules for adults, and was nothing but a mindless dumb action romp. But to be fair, that's all I was expecting. The movie is nothing more than a CGI action extravaganza and it has enough special effects to please a mainstream audience but the critic in me just kept holding me back. You know how some movies you just have to check your brain at the door for, well I just can't do that, and I feel that if I smashed myself several times in the …
review by . April 25, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Clash of the Titans is like the guy who farts in the room and then decides to leave you with the smell.  It stinks.  After watching Clash of the Titans and walking out of the theater, I felt dirtier than a gas station restroom.  I will need many years of therapy after this one.      Okay, so perhaps Clash of the Titans wasn't THAT bad.  But make no mistake, the movie is bad.  Not enough to make you feel dirty.  Just bad enough that you look …
review by . July 31, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
   A long time ago there were big, chaotic, uncontrollable gods, the Titans, who ruled the Earth and gave birth to new gods who destroyed them and created man, in order to gain power from their worship.  But men, being men, resented the arbitrary whims of the gods and it was inevitable they'd fight back.  Hades, the god of the underworld, hit upon a plan to bring fear into the hearts of men so they'd worship again.  He'd release the Kraken, a giant sea monster, …
review by . June 06, 2010
After being on this site and checking out some of the reviews I came to a conclusion....I am one of the only people in America who enjoyed Clash of the Titans!!      The movie, as many of you know, follows the story of Perseus as he goes to kill Medusa and journeys to meet the three witches in order to slay the Kraken. The movie had a star studded cast with Liam Neeson, Ralph Finnes and Sam Worthington. With lots of special effects and an oppertunity to see this movie in 3D …
review by . April 06, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Greek Mythology gets a massive makeover in this overblown, but visally stunning adventure....
The original 1981 Ray Harryhausen special effects designed and produced  fantasy adventure is a film of magic wonder, excitement, adventure and mysticism. The 2010 remake or re-imaging if you prefer  "Clash of the Titans" is centered around a young  fisherman named Perseus  who  after a personal loss  sets  out  to the city of Argos to  take up the task of saving the whole city from the brink of destruction by the hands of the Kraken.  …
review by . October 20, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
The original Clash of the Titans is perhaps mostly remembered for its sheer corniness. This remake by the same name is certainly better and has amped up special effects. On the whole, I'd give it 3.5 stars. The movie does some things very well, such as the monsters. Medusa looks great and perfectly combines beauty and horror. Yet, I can't help but think that the directors wasted this opportunity to make a truly classic movie. Clash of the Titans falls into the trap of many modern movies …
review by . April 06, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
I was a big fan of the 1981 movie Clash of the Titans. It had everything I loved: action, excitement, Greek mythology! It was a great film for its time and still holds up at least somewhat today. Sure, the effects have aged, but that's to be expected.    It was also a movie that pushed me even more into my budding interest in Greek mythology; an interest which has continued to this very day. Heck, I got quite an interest in mythology in general and even took a course in it when …
Quick Tip by . November 02, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
If the lord of the rings, the lightning theif, and 300 got togeather and had a child it would be the clash of the titans. Not that it was a bad movie just the similarities where almost to distracting for me to follow the actual storyline
About the reviewer
Chris Pandolfi ()
Growing up a shy kid in a quiet suburb of Los Angeles, Chris Pandolfi knows all about the imagination. Pretend games were always the most fun for him, especially on the school playground; he and his … more
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Poster art for "Clash of the Titans."


Clash of the Titans is a 2010 fantasy film which is a remake of the 1981 film of the same name, itself loosely based on the Greek myth of Perseus.  Directed by Louis Leterrier and starring Sam Worthington, the film was originally set for standard release on March 26, 2010.  It was later announced that the film would be converted to 3-D and was released on April 2, 2010.

"Release the Kraken!" Ah, it could only beClash of the Titans, the 2010 remake that retains the instruction to unleash the great beastie from the sea. The 1981 original boasted Ray Harryhausen's legendary stop-motion technique of animating various mythological creatures--it was his final feature project--and given the cornball approach of the movie in general, that was the main draw. The remake supplies new state-of-the-art special effects (released in 3-D) and a nicely muscular sense of momentum. Sam Worthington (theAvatarguy) plays Perseus, a demigod who doesn't know that Zeus (Liam Neeson) is his father. Perseus is selected to lead an expedition to find and slay the Medusa, lest Zeus's evil brother Hades (Ralph Fiennes, in fine slinking mode) rain down misery upon a seaport--and you just know that means the Kraken is coming. Ye gods, it's a mess, and we haven't even mentioned the witches and the harpies and the giant scorpions. But if we did, it would be clear thatClash of the Titansis a perfectly dandy popcorn epic, unpretentious and punchy. Director Louis ...
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