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CLASH OF THE TITANS (2010)

title: CLASH OF THE TITANS
year: 2010
cast: Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Jason Flemyng
rating: **

By making Zeus (Liam Neeson) a bitter "General" and his mortal son Perseus an aggravated jar head type who’s ticked at the gods, this is more RAMBO than a remake of the 1981 fantasy classic, the swan song for stop-motion guru Ray Harryhausen. Computers have taken over this department, and all the creatures… including Medusa, giant scorpions, the winged horse Pegasus (hardly even shown), and the Kraken… move so quickly the fight scenes don’t provide our hero with a challenge that’d make him a better warrior after each. Gone also is the love interest Andromeda… Well she’s there but not really. Instead of being protected by Perseus, she waits in town for the Kraken to rise from the earth: making the plot – to kill the beast before it either kills her or destroys the town – seem secondary to the camera-shaky battles occurring elsewhere. Ralph Fiennes is the villainous Hades, and as he shape-shifts into flying harpies, and then becomes a cloud of black mist, he’s not very intimidating because of the effects surrounding him. But the three biggest problems are the character Io, an exposition-spouting supermodel who follows Perseus (and his fellow soldiers) around like a gorgeous soccer mom: deleting any mystery the characters might experience otherwise… An ever-moving camera gliding like a dizzying seesaw… And the finale with the Kraken, resembling a giant octopus and not as big a challenge as anticipated. Basically, the movie feels like a fifteen minute short stretched into two long hours, which can happen if centering on a one-dimensional hero with a one-track mind.
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