Clash of Clash of the Titans

It's on!

Perseus got angry, really angry.

In fine modern Hollywood fashion, the retelling of 1981’s Clash of the Titans for today’s attention-deprived audience seeks to amplify Perseus’s already impossible predicament to the umpteenth level. The years have not been kind to Perseus’s plight, because vengeful and unpleasant fits today’s action hero.

In the new film, anything resembling goodwill or whimsy is effectively snuffed out, for fear of not being cool. The magical, metal owl, Bubo (the R2D2 of the Ancient Greek world in 1981) makes an appearance only to be scoffed at and left like trash.

Perseus don’t like cute.

Poor Litt'l Bubo is dissed!!

Where art thine flowing locks?

Where art thine flowing locks?

This is a world where his soft long locks are shaved in skinhead fashion and his winged horse Pegesus, must be black. Perseus has no time for love, because he is now a God slayer, as well as Titan slayer. Sam Worthington (the actor who plays Perseus) even refused to wear a toga, “I’m not wearing a toga. Bugger that! You can’t look manly in a toga, I’m sorry. I can’t do it.”

Although the original film was hardly accurate in it’s retelling of the ancient greek story; the latest rips the beloved myth a new one. This version kills off the mother of Perseus, when they are cast to sea by the King of Argos. Perseus is then raised an unlucky fisherman by an adopted family, only to see them killed by the god Hades. He enters into Argos, not to win the affections and marry Andromada, but to seek revenge from the gods who have treated him so badly. Zeus does not  dutifully watch over his son to make sure he has all the advantages, but has to be reminded of his existence. The few godly gifts his son does receive, he refuses to accept. They have effectively cut out all the backstory of Andromada, Calabus and the gods of Olympus and the movie suffers for it. It’s like the screenwriters played God of War and then fast forwarded through to the actiony bits of the first movie, instead of referring to the source material.

The action is much faster and dangerous for Perseus too. Calabus, main villain of the first, is demoted to henchman. Perseus gets a bigger and more powerful nemesis in the god Hades. The scorpions, Medusa and Kraken are much bigger and faster too. Although charming, I realize how slow Harryhausen’s stop motion creatures move nowadays and this was a change I will begrudgingly accept.

It sounds like I am hating on the new film, but it is still enjoyable for what it is- a modern popcorn action flick. The new one is vastly more exciting. Unfortunately, a lot of it’s soul is lost as a result.

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