Plot Half-man, half-god Perseus (Worthington) is raised by kindly fisher folk, but when they are killed by Hades (Fiennes) - collateral damage in the war between men and gods - he sets forth on a perilous revenge quest to find his destiny, rescue a princess and resolve his issues with his father Zeus (Neeson), king of the gods.
The ancient Greeks not only told great tales that explored the human psyche through epic adventures, they did something unprecedented in human civilization up to that point. They created their gods in man’s image. Thus the gods on Mount Olympus are a fallible and emotional lot, given to passionate outbursts, horrid tantrums, unpredictable fits of compassion and lusty urges that will not be denied.
Perseus is the result of one of Zeus’ impulsive assaults on an innocent mortal woman, which gets her executed by her enraged husband King Acrisius (Jason Flemyng, who reappears slathered in prosthetics as a relentless mutant killer henchman of Hades) and almost does for baby Perseus except Pete Postlethwaite and Elizabeth McGovern fish him out of the Aegean and adopt him. A swift passage of years and he’s bulked up into Sam Worthington, sporting a buzz cut and looking more like a US Marine than a Greek seaman.
Circumstances force him to Argos, where the decadent populace have turned their backs on the gods, provoking the wrath of the Olympians and inspiring resentful king of the Underworld Hades to plot the overthrow of his brother Zeus while they are distracted by wiping out mortals.
For reasons that are not entirely clear, Perseus then girds his loins and sets off with a platoon of Argosians who range from salty veterans (Mads Mikkelsen, Liam Cunningham) to Hans Matheson and a delicate youth (Nicholas Hoult). But they are almost indistinguishable since they all have cornrow extensions and a lot of facial hair. Costume designer Lindy Hemming was instructed not to show too much leg between their leather mini-skirts and their sandal boots, darn it, but at least they’ve been kitted out with those ab-sculpted breastplates that make them all look ripped. They have to find three obnoxious hags called the Stygian Witches so Perseus can get the answer to a Big Question, cross into the Underworld to kill the gorgon Medusa (Russian supermodel Natalia Vodianova with snake dreadlocks and looks that kill), tote her head back to Argos and surprise Hades’ ravenous monster of the deep, the Kraken, with it. That’s the idea anyway, but numbers dwindle alarmingly and in the wrong order, with the prettiest warriors mercilessly dispatched, and most of them so abruptly you are never sure who that was that just toppled into a fiery abyss or shattered into pieces. En route they battle icky giant scorpion things and hook up with nomadic guys who look like tree trunks with glowing blue eyes and ride the desert monsters. That bit is like Dune, and not in a good way.
Two things stand-out. The first is Fiennes’s hugely fun turn as a hunchbacked, raspy-voiced, bitter, twisted Hades who turns up in a fireball and a smoking cloak to wreak a spot of havoc, instill terror, make dire pronouncements and such. The on-screen reunion of Neeson and Fiennes echoes their Schindler’s List dynamic, Zeus being all handsome and kind of noble, and Hades all full-tilt nutso. Also good is fragrant Gemma Arterton’s demi-goddess Io being attached to the travelling band of warriors since she serves as a quite useful Voice of Exposition, explaining all sorts of otherwise baffling stuff.
It will have become apparent to devotees of the 1981 Clash Of The Titans, which was not very good either but is fondly remembered, that the plot in this is quite different. Even those who prefer the manlier Worthington to Harry Hamlin (so dreamy in his shorty toga) will regret the sidelining here of the Olympians, who ought to manipulate mankind like pieces on a game board but are relegated to fleeting extras. What was the point of casting Danny Huston as Poseidon, for instance, then disposing of him after one line? Despite a rather good, gnarly skeletal River Styx ferryman, the effects don’t come close to the charm of Ray Harryhausen’s creations. Bubo, Harryhausen’s mechanical owl, makes a brief cameo by way of homage, but the most magical element in a generally lunkheaded outing is winged Pegasus, the flying horse and his herd achieved beautifully.
As for the 3-D, it’s a non-event, the film having been shot normally and twiddled in post to ride the Avatar wave. It’s effective in a few bits (you can almost smell the Kraken's breath), but if you take the glasses off it doesn’t make a lot of difference most of the time.
Verdict Poorly written nonsense, but lovers of beefcake action will be happy enough with the heroes gymnastically vaulting monsters and slicing and dicing their way around the ancient world. An extra star for Ralph Fiennes, who is a god.
This film upset me. I wanted to see the Kraken go absolutely fucking mental in Argos, and medusa be more than just a man hating 8 pinter. I had to buy God of war to destroy everything after watching this.
hy would the kraken go mental in argos? did he get the wrong order given to him or something?
Only redeeming feature about this film was Gemma Arterton and her legs as she was getting thrown around a abit and screaming, which she deserved for being extremely irritating. Half a star for giant scorpions too, but then half a star deducted for one randomly deciding to run into a wall.
What a piece of shit. Atrocious acting on display from everyone, very bad pacing, no development or exposition, bad editing and filled completely with "what the fuck?" moments. Case in point- The three w... More
Nothing spectacular but I enjoyed it, although at times it feels like a ] guilty pleasure (particularly when Ralph Fiennes and/or Liam Neeson are on screen), looking at the cast list makes me think the running time was severely cut down, I saw Danny Huston for what was all of maybe 5 seconds but without watching the whole thing again I couldn't honestly say I spotted Alexander Siddig, Tamer Hassan or Agyness Deyn on screen (I know some of those aren't exactly megastars but they still must ha... More
By now you know this is lame compared to the original. Why? The original was an adventure piece, meant for basic fun.
This one is a result of what happens when directors are too involved in special effects. It is how not to make a movie.
We just have a muddled mess. The characters would be okay if he would leave them alone, and not go too Hollywood in the cliches like the dead family. We have no idea who the characters are, and if they were obvious extras it might be different, but we... More
Not nearly as terrible as some are saying. I wasn't expecting much, but was pleasently surprised. Plotting could have been better fleshed out and structured, but it held together okay for me. Well executed action sequences, didn't try to be a mythological Matrix. The action felt gritty and grounded. The character of Perseus should have been fleshed out a bit more, but Worthington did the job, not lumbered with a wavering American accent this time. No really bad performances or dialogue. If you'... More
Saw this last night in 2D and it was quite a let down.
It really reminds me of Van Helsing - some interesting ideas and decent action scenes but ultimately was an overstuffed mess. Haven't seen the original since childhood although really enjoyed it, however wasn't approaching this with the reverance that (for instance) Harry Knowles has for it.
Like many others I thought the Mount Olympus scenes were some of the best and I also hope that a direct... More
I've read many "middle-ish" reviews in the mainstream press about this film, and some very negative reviews on this forum about this film
it put me off going to see it, until today, when I had some spare time...went to see it in 2D as its cheaper and I prefer the improved contrast / brightness of 2D films to 3D and not have a cheap pair of glasses between my naked eyeball and the screen
(I've seen several recent films in both formats in case you are wondering)
I actually reall... More
Because it was boring as hell for two hours and the 3D added nothing to the film. Take your glasses off and there was hadly any difference. Kick ass is a much better film and should have been number one at the box office.
I actually did take my glasses off a couple of times because I could barely tell it was in 3D. I've enjoyed the 3D of some recent films (Avatar, Alice) but this was rubbish. If you're gonna watch it, do so in 2D, it's cheaper and you won'... More
Is this some kind of shite record? Basic new rule of thumb is Avoid-Anything-With-3D. Or anything with Danny Huston in it. Now which pussy clouts paid to see this instead of the brilliant Kick-Ass? ... More
Thankfully I have an Unlimited card, so I only paid another £1.50 to see this in 3D, which seemed to solely consist of making half the frame blurry.
Whilst I wasn't exactly expecting of the King hoping for a fun and stupid action romp in the vein of rmerse like. Instead, it seems that people are using "but it's meant to be corny" as an excuse for just a pretty lazy, shoddy script and lacklustre effects.
If this had been handed to Robert Rodriguez or even (whisper it) Michael Bay, thi... More
Am in two minds about it. Thought most of the cast was totally wasted (Polly Walker, Danny Huston, Jason Flyming, Dr Bashir), thought that it had been cut by about an hour, didn't like all the somersaults in the fight scenes and thought Medusa was a little rushed... oh and didn't like the whole Io/Perseus romance - where the hell was Andromeda?! - but I kinda liked it.
I hope there's a Director's Cut because it could seriously do with some improvements (mainly on Mount Olympus).
See ... More
Because it was boring as hell for two hours and the 3D added nothing to the film. Take your glasses off and there was hadly any difference. Kick ass is a much better film and should have been number one at the box office. ... More