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Wrath of the Titans

2012 Fantasy Film directed by Jonathan Liebesman

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The Wrath of WHAT God Doomed Us to This Movie?

  • Apr 7, 2012
If you were one of the millions of people who saw Clash of the Titans and thought to yourself that things couldn't get any worse than that film, you thought wrong.  Wrath of the Titans was brought down to us by a vengeful God who wanted to punish us for watching that movie.  Lord have mercy on our souls!  Wrath of the Titans is far worse than the previous film in almost every way imaginable.

Wrath of the Titans begins when Zeus goes to Perseus to tell him that the people have stopped praying to the Gods and thus if the Gods aren't acknowledged they will die.  But worse than that, Chronos, Zeus's father will soon be revived, and if Perseus doesn't help to destroy him, the world will be destroyed.  Hearing about this Perseus grabs his sword and says... "I'm living for my son now, please go away and do not bother me again."  Okay, he doesn't EXACTLY say that, but he does say that he's living for his son now.  The problem that seems to slip Perseus's mind is that his son will die if he doesn't help Zeus.  Instead of pointing this out, Zeus leaves without him to go to the Underworld to talk to his brother Hades.

Once in the Underworld to visit his evil brother Hades whom he banished... Hades decides that he doesn't want to help Zeus and that instead he will revive their father.  "But last time he tried to kill us," Zeus says.  To which Hades doesn't seem to care because Chronos has promised they won't die and they'll have immortality and not lose their powers.  You know, Chronos, the dormant one who actually can't speak to them.  I guess Hades must've prayed.  Beyond that Zeus is surprised that his evil brother Hades is doing evil things.  But more than that, it is the idea that last time Chronos tried to kill them and Hades basically says, "What are the chances that'll happen twice?"  If someone were put in jail for attempted murder and they were released... would you be surprised that they tried to kill the same person again?  No?  I didn't think so.

Zeus has bigger problems, though.  It turns out he shall supply Chronos with power.  More than that, Zeus other brother Poseiden is about to get killed while his other son Ares is having issues that Zeus couldn't keep his godly penis fromg going inside women.  In a way, it's hard to feel bad for Zeus because, you know, he brought this on himself.  You know, banishing Hades, not paying attention to his first son and then spending all his time trying to get Perseus's attention and lavishing him with praise.  But then again... he IS played by Liam Neeson, and that guy's a badass.  But that's beside the point.

So Zeus is captured, Hades is evil (why did Zeus think his evil brother wouldn't do evil things, again?).  This is just the first twenty minutes or so of the movie and it is pretty obvious what some of its biggest issues are before we're even a quarter of the way in.  There was no careful writing done with this screenplay.  In the first place, it's hard to ascertain if the writers actually watched the first movie.  The whole point of what Perseus did in the first film (as bad as IT was) was make people aware of the existance of the God's to begin with.  That was the point of the previous film. 

But there are more things to contend with.  The first is that Perseus has a son.  It's not that he has a son, it's that we are never at any point in time filled in on what exactly happened between the first and second film.  It apparently takes place ten years later.  And Perseus, who spent so much time letting people know the God's existed, doens't seem to care.  It is only when he has a vision of Chronos destroying the world (and his son in the process) that Perseus decides he probably should do something.  Because he needed a VISION OF HIS GODDAMN SON DYING INSTEAD OF ACTUALLY JUST THINKING TO HIMSELF "OH MY GOD IF I DON'T HELP MY SON WILL DIE!"  Nope.  Perseus is so dumb he has to dream it because coming to that conclusion on his own was too much work or something.  Who knows.

That's not half as bad as Zeus.  It's one thing not to know your son will also die when someone tells you the world will be destroyed.  But it's another when you don't understand why your evil brother is doing evil things. 

Zeus is captured and as Perseus decides to help, he is a little too late when he goes to the temple.  Poseidon comes to help by saying Perseus can help because he's half a God and half human.  But what can Perseus do?  Well, nothing really.  But it turns out he can get help.  Poseidon, conveniently enough, also has a son that is a Demi-God.  After that Poseidon dies.  If we were supposed to feel sorry, the audience doesn't quite know it.  Given how forgettable the first movie was it's hard to feel bad.  I can't even remember if Poseidon was in the first movie.  If he was, he must've been in it for just barely a minute or two. 

So Perseus goes to find Poseidon.  He seems to know exactly where he is.  He finds Queen Andromeda who has imprisoned Agenor (Poseidon's son) for trying to steal the crown.  In short, Agenor cannot be trusted.  Luckily Perseus convinces him quite easily to take up his plight.  Andromeda goes along as well as they take Poseidon's trident to find Hephaestus to help them.  Only Agenor can navigate them there by sea because he's Poseidon's son.  "The Navigator."  Now, given that Agenor is a thief that can't be trusted you'd think the movie would play on this.  Show the audience his distrustful ways.  Pirates of the Caribbean didn't just tell us Jack Sparrow was a rogue out to serve his own ends... they showed us by having him do things like... betray his allies AND his enemies to show us he was out to serve his own ends.  But Agenor?  Nothing.  He cooperates just the same.  And while he has lively energy the film makers just never give us reason to even suspect we or the characters can't trust him.  We're told things, but we never actually SEE them.  He's the most humorous character of the bunch, but that doesn't really mean anything when every other character is forgettable.

Again, we begin to see a lot of problems with the movie through things like this.  Once they find the island where Hephaestus is supposed to be they're promptly attacked by Cyclops.  They don't defeat them.  They battle but once they see Poseidon's trident they stop battling.  At no point does the film ever show us what exactly is at stake.  And the only thing they try to play on is this idea that Perseus is trying to save his son without first making us sympathize or care about Perseus's son.

But Perseus's journey to the underworld is no where near the nightmare that the subplot of Zeus and Hades brotherly love is.  Remember how I said Zeus shouldn't be surprised that his evil brother is doing evil things?  Well, it turns out that Hades actually has a heart after all, and at some point decides he's a good guy because his father that tried to kill him just might try to kill him again.  And only because Zeus delivers some crap about how he forgives Hades for draining him of his power and asks Hades to forgive him for banishing him to the underworld.  There's nothing that really makes us care for these characters.  At all.  And Hades sudden change of heart just doesn't make much sense.  We're lead to believe it is out of some strange brotherly love... even though none of that mattered in the first movie at all.  Even though Hades tried to betray his brother in the first film. 

Ares doesn't fair much better as he spends a hell of a lot of time being the jealous son who is in it just for taking revenge on his father.  The scenes involving Zeus and Hades are among the worst the film has to offer.  We don't see too much of them, however.  We spend most of the time with Zeus's boring son, Perseus.

There is hardly ever much tension when it comes to the actual story itself.  As Perseus, Agenor and Andromeda are going through Tartarus... is there any tension?  Not really.  They get lost and that's about it.  The characters hallucinate but there's not tension when they KNOW they're hallucinating.  And even less tension when Perseus knows the thing attacking him actually IS real where as the hallucination of his son is not.  This is odd because we are specifically warned about mind games before they go into the damn place... but the film makers never tired to do any mind games on the characters whatsoever.  At this point it's clear the film is just wasting time.

And, of course, we're still just talking about the story.  We haven't even gotten into some of the bad film making beyond the screenplay that lacks tension, character development and doesn't place a whole lot at stake.  Visually the film CAN be striking because there's some good CGI, but that's about the only compliment.  During some of the action sequences the camera is so shakey and unfocused that we can't really see anything.  Meaning even the good CGI goes to waste because we can't focus on anything.

Some of the 3D isn't bad.  But it's the gimmicky kind of of 3D.  Meaning, where things "Pop Out" at the audience instead of the kind of 3D that enhances the world we're in.  It isn't used to visually enhance the world we're seeing or provide any sort of depth.  It's only used so that when rocks go flying at the screen you think they're flying at you.  I think at one point some monster's head even appeared to pop out of the frame.  But who cares?  It's just a sort of gimmicky thing here rather than something to aid and enhance the experience of the movie.

There are two things that make things worse about the film.  The first is that it goes in a simple pattern.  First there's exposition of some sort before Perseus is attacked by something.  Then there's more dialog and Perseus gets attacked by something else.  If you're a gamer you see this as, "Cutscene and then boss fight."  But this isn't exactlyt he problem with these moments.  The problem is the editing.  The movie presses on without actually explaining things to us or showing.  Or they just leave things wide open.  The hallucinations they see in Tartarus?  Does the film go anywhere?  Do the characters even note about them?  No.  Does the movie use it to develop characters?  No.  Perseus and crew will be attacked by something and then the film moves on.  And sometimes new revelations happen off screen.  So when Perseus finally kisses Andromeda... there was nothing that showed us they had any romantic connection except for the fact that she's a woman (the ONLY goddamn woman that lives, mind you) and he's a man (and there are approximately twenty two million of them).  The movie often gets ahead of itself.  There are many times when, once we go away from Perseus and return to him he's done a few things... that apparently have an affect later but we don't actually know WHAT he did.  It leaves gaps.  Not exactly plotholes... it's not like you can't see how they came to a conclusion, but you do get the sense that perhaps between going from point A to point C they should've stopped at point B,

And even more than that, we are never filled in on what happened in between movies.  What happened to Perseus's wife?  Why did the people stop going to the God's and praying?  Where was the setup for the entire movie?  At what point did the film makers think it would be a great idea not to fill anyone in on anything?

It just seems like there was a lot packed in, but that the screenwriters were unsure of what it is they were packing in.  The characters,for instance, are lazy.  Let us examine Perseus.  There is never one moment where we think to ourselves, "Yeah, his son really means a lot to him."  And it isn't because his son is hardly featured it's because the screenplay seems to forget he exists when Perseus is on the journey.  Likewise, the absence of his wife does no one any favors in the character development.  There's barely even a mention of what happened.  We understand that this is Perseus's story, but what's at stake (his son) is hardly emphasized.  Queen Andromeda may be the worst.  And this is primarily because she's a token character.  She's stuck in the film purely because it's such a sausage fest there has to be SOME estrogen somewhere.  The only other woman in the movie is promptly killed.  But if you even managed to learn her name it would be surprising. 

You must applaud the movie for knowing what it is.  It's an action movie and designed as such.  But the idea that it's bad because it's an action movie is a stupid argument.  It's bad because so much of what is done is handled poorly.  Some of the action actually is pretty good.  But all the moments where things slow down the film seems unsure of what it's supposed to do.  All the dialog sequences feel awkward.  Perseus knows how to fight but apparently never worked on his social skills ever.  Every line feels forced.  Like they're just saying it because they should, but not because there's a reason for them to say it.  Even the characters relationships with one another feel forced.  Perseus is only keeping Agenor around because he's his cousin.  Not because Agenor is actually a good guy.  And the audience is likely to wonder if he really needs to be there after a while either.  He never actually does anything.  In fact, we learn later that Perseus can wield the spear and use it... so why exactly did the need Agenor to find this island that they're taken to by the spear that Perseus can apparently use?  And does Agenor ever use the spear again?  Even as a weapon in battle?  No.  In fact, he doesn't do anything.  He has a map to navigate Tartarus and can't do it.  He goes into battle and does nothing.  He gets caught in a trap when the cyclops is there.  There's rarely been a character this useless.

And then some things just go into absurdity.  Kronos's big climactic moment turns into something anti-climactic because despite all the chaos and destruction going on, it feels as though nothing is going on.  There's a battle going on on the ground but with how big Kronos is, you wonder why he needs to have minions when he could just as easily flick a finger and they would get covered in lava.  But what happens?  His demise is almost too simple for Perseus. 

But the lack of character development and focus takes it's toll when Zeus eventually dies.  When I was sitting in the theater... the entire theater erupted in laughter.  I'm quite sure none of us should've been laughing when Zeus died but it couldn't be helped.  It's set up to be dramatic but you just... laugh at it.  Do we feel sorry or really feel anything?  Nope.  Nothing.

The remake of Clash of the Titans was bad as it was.  To be that much worse than that movie requires quite a bit of effort.  It's almost as though the director and screenwriters said, "You thought the first one was bad?  I'll give you a sequel so bad that we'll have to redefine the word bad in the dictionary to mean 'Wrath of the Titans!"  You'll be able to go up to your friends and say, "Dude, I've got bad news."  When he asks how bad you'll say, "Wrath of the Titans Bad," and that way they'll know someone died (probably from watching this movie).  If you're a student in high school and get an "F" on a test you can tell your parents at least you didn't make them watch Wrath of the Titans and they'll suddenly be proud of you.  If I had a terminal illness and the only cure was watching Wrath of the Titans, I'd simply ask if they could give me another terminal illness just so that I'd die faster. 

It's a terrible movie overall.  One you're apt to laugh at for the wrong reasons.  You might enjoy some of the action but a screenplay being this sloppy is a little strange.  And it isn't that it's sloppy so much as it hardly does anything to cover its tracks.  There are times when you're certain the movie is self aware of how bad it is at times.  The sad part is that it had a chance to be better had there just been a bit more care taken with it.  It's not like it had a lot to surpass.  If anything the biggest problem is that the movie feels rushed.  So much so the parts that should be dramatic are awkward (or funny) while the action heavy parts are unfocused and sporadic. 

If you MUST see Wrath of the Titans it's not particularly worth spending money on. It would be best to wait until it's on HBO or something.

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April 12, 2012
If it's an action-packed movie, the sales will be good. That's the primary concern of the producers.
April 09, 2012
yeah this was pretty lazy storytelling--as for why the mortals began to stop praying, I think it stemmed from the first few scenes of the first movie. This made "John Carter" look like a masterpiece.
April 09, 2012
Sounds dreadful. Thank you for sharing a persuasive warning so that we don't suffer as you did.
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Sean A. Rhodes ()
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I'm a more analytical person. I believe that the purpose of the review is not for me to give you my opinion but for me to give you an analysis and help you decide if you want to get it. If you reading … more
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Director: Jonathan Liebesman
Genre: Action, Adventure
Release Date: march 30 2012
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Studio: Legendary Pictures
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