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Movie Review: Clash of The Titans

April 2, 2010

Clash of The Titans – A Warner Bros. Release

http://clash-of-the-titans.warnerbros.com/

Release Date: April 2nd, 2010

Rated 14A for violence, and gory scenes.

Running time: 106 minutes

Lousi Leterrier (dir.)

Travis Beacham (screenwriter)

Phil Hay (screenwriter)

Matt Manfredi (screenwriter)

Beverly Cross (1981 screenplay)

Ramin Djawadi (music)

Sam Worthington as Perseus

Liam Neeson as Zeus

Ralph Fiennes as Hades

Jason Flemyng as Calibos/Acrisius

Gemma Arterton as Io

Alexa Davalos as Andromeda

(L-r) SAM WORTHINGTON as Perseus and LIAM NEESON as Zeus in Warner Bros. Pictures’ and Legendary Pictures’ “Clash of the Titans,” distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures.  Photo Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

© 2010 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Our reviews below:

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Clash of the Titans Review By John C.

** (out of 4)

Titans clashed, I only mildly cared.  The original Clash of the Titans was no Star Wars, and this new one is no Avatar.  This new revamping of Clash of the Titans is, in a word, loud.  At times, the screen is cluttered with special effects, as the soundtrack blares all the noise.  Starring Sam Worthington, (known to most of the world as Jake Sully), this is the story of Perseus – the illegitimate son of a woman and a God.  He must travel through the underworld to defeat Medusa, and in turn defeat the Kraken that has been released upon the city.

The shaky-cam special effects would be dizzying and disorienting whether you see it in 2D or 3D, but are particularly nauseating when all you have to calm your nerves is a medium root beer.  Ray Harryhausen’s special effects may be dated, but at least he could hold the darn camera straight.  I admire the brilliant old school effects of Harryhausen, but in 1981 they didn’t quite cut it.  The original Clash of the Titans doesn’t really hold up and wasn’t even a great movie by ‘81 standards, mainly because it was unbearably slow-paced, with long stretches of cheesy dialogue.  But it has got a fan base, and I respect that.  Hey, even I loved the cameo by the mechanical owl, Bubo, seen 25 minutes into the new one.

I admire the lavish production design and good intentions of the filmmakers to give people a good time.  So from that standpoint this is not a bad movie – it’s actually a pretty good one.  But the insistence to film everything so shaky and close-up that you can’t even tell what’s going on, is not a good choice and the biggest downfall of the film.  If you want to see a 3D blockbuster that’s actually exciting, incredibly entertaining and surprisingly moving, then go see How To Train Your Dragon – the best movie I have seen so far this year, and an all around, hands down great movie.

If you don’t mind leaving the theatre with a Transformers 2 headache and a 3D/CG hangover, then by all means go see Clash of the Titans.  Who knows, the teenage boy or mythology geek inside of you might actually like it.  Overall it provides a sporadically entertaining and fun, but very overwhelming and loud time at the movies.  But I just can’t really recommend something that left me with a headache.

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Clash of the Titans Review By Erin V.

**1/2 (out of 4)

Like in the original film, Perseus, demi-god son of Zeus, is fighting against the greek gods and must find a way to defeat that pesky Kraken…  The Kraken looks better here, although, I still didn’t really feel much more tension for the characters than in the 1981 version.

Compared to the original Clash of the Titans, this is certainly an amped up version in terms of special effects, but the utilization of those effects compared to other action movies, is nothing special.  Medusa is quite cool in her movements though.

One thing in particular I found about this version – especially in AMC’s ETX auditorium with its larger theatre screen and in enhanced sound – was that it was overwhelming at times.  The action scenes were cut mostly in close-up shots, rather than wide (or even medium), making it harder to follow along and watch what was happening, and the sounds of hissing, screeching creatures, and swords clanking was so loud at times that I could feel the vibrations in my seat, and couldn’t help but block my ears to muffle the sounds to a more reasonable level.

But for a big, loud, and not very story driven action movie, CotT is fun enough.  It kept me entertained, and wasn’t too long at 106 minutes.  In terms of the original version, the story is changed in parts here, although fans will still see the parallels between the two.  Also, watch for a cameo from the old mechanical owl, which was fun to see.

In short, if you liked the first one, or liked the trailers for this one, checking this out in theatres would be the way to do it.  It is an action set-piece that certainly won’t hold up the same way on a small screen, out of 3D.  Don’t get me wrong, the film was enjoyable in a big loud theatre for what it was.

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Clash of the Titans Review By Nicole

**1/2 (out of 4)

A remake of a hilariously cheesy 1981 film, the 2010 version is fun, and a lot louder and faster paced.  Based on Greek mythology, Clash of the Titans tells a classic story of good versus evil.  When Perseus (Sam Worthington) realizes he is a demigod, he must defeat Hades (Ralph Fiennes) god of the underworld, before he takes power away from Zeus (Liam Neeson), the divine father of Perseus.

While the film is too loud at times, and a little hard to follow, Clash of the Titans will appeal to the 12-year-old boy market.  The creatures, in particular the Pegasus and Medusa, are really cool.  This remake differs somewhat from the original, not only because of better special effects, but also some characters have been changed.  This remake has also been given more Christian undertones, which I liked.  I also enjoyed the cameo from Bubo, the mechanical owl puppet from the original.

If you want an action movie that is fun, but not too intelligently stimulating, then go see Clash of the Titans.

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Clash of the Titans Review By Maureen

** (out of 4)

This new 2010 Clash of the Titans is a flashier, louder 3D remake of the original 1981 campy version.  Based on Greek mythology, the story is still basically the same.  A power struggle is emerging between people on earth and the heavenly Gods lead by Zeus (Liam Neeson) and Hades (Ralph Fiennes), king of the underworld.

Zeus’ demigod son Perseus (Sam Worthington) is captured by soldiers after his family is killed by Hades.  Perseus is recruited to help battle the Gods and save mankind from devastation.  With the help of his beautiful spiritual guide, Io (Gemma Arterton), Perseus learns he has to kill Hades’ beast the Kraken by cutting off Medusa’s head.

There are a lot of interesting and scary creatures in this movie.  The special effects and makeup are well done.  The battle and action scenes however seemed overdone.  The camera and action was moving so fast at times that everything looked like a blur and somewhat fake.  So many scenes were lit up by lightning flashes that I’m glad I’m not prone to seizures.  The sound was also at times overwhelmingly loud.

The filmmakers did make good use of 3D for a nice sense of depth in the forests, mountains, valleys and desert scenes.  They could have done better with the Pegasus flying scenes however.  Recent movies such as Avatar and How To Train Your Dragon are examples of how to do 3D flying sequences right.

Overall, this isn’t my kind of movie.  Those who like epic battle movies and are fans of the lead actors should see it in 3D, where it is mildly entertaining.

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Clash of the Titans Review By Tony

** (out of 4)

A few days ago on a new BluRay disk I watched the 1981 version of Clash of the Titans for the first time to prepare for the 3D remake released this week.  Despite recent advances from Industrial Light and Magic and others seen in films like Star Wars, the 1981 film went back to Ray Harryhausen for its rock-em sock-em special effects, which along with stilted dialogue from Burgess Meredith and an A-list of classic British actors kept fooling me into thinking it was a lost film from the 1950s, which as a bonus gave some unintended laughs.

At least CotT2010 is louder, and the 3D, though only tacked on after the fact, adds depth with only a couple of glitches, cancelled out by the strings seen on the flying mechanical owl of CotT1981 (also appearing in the new version in one of its rare bits of intentional humour).  Unfortunately, director Louis Leterrier has not used 21st century visual technology to best effect in the large battle scenes–tight editing and very busy screens shot with shakycams leave everything in a blur reminiscent of Transformers 2. For example, the flying attack creatures moved so fast that I felt myself wondering whether they resembled the flying monkeys of The Wizard of Oz, without feeling any of the terror that the originals inspired.  I must admit that Harryhausen’s already anachronistic creations in CotT1981 actually worked better here, with the possible exception of the Medusa, which CotT2010 handled quite well.

Other changes in the script made it even more confusing than the 1981 version that had already strayed from its Greek sources.  Though CotT1981 could be criticized for its slow pace, the scenes on Mount Olympus with its clay action figures and the Burgess Meredith character on Earth at least explained the plot more clearly than their counterparts in CotT2010.

Overall, there isn’t much to say between the two versions–if you like fair action movies, both are worth seeing once, but if you want to see something good, go to How to Train Your Dragon, which is better than both put together.

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Consensus: Clash of the Titans is a louder, faster paced remake of the 1981 film of the same name.  If the trailers or the original interested you, see it in theatres – it won’t hold up the same way on a small screen, out of 3D. **1/4 (Out of 4)

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