I have always loved mystical Hellenic style adventure films like Jason and the Argonauts, Hercules, Ulysses and the more Middle Eastern Sinbad. These films like the original Clash of the Titans that I saw in 1981 at the tender age of 11, filled me with the sense of adventure, excitement, great storytelling and memorable characters. To me these epic films were the foundation for my love of science fiction and fantasy, which are grounded in epic style themes. The original Clash of the Titans was by no means the greatest film of all time, but it unfolded like a grand epic with a young hero who finds confidence in himself and develops the skills needed to defeat all obstacles, so when I saw that a remake of the Clash of the Titans was being developed, I was excited, but I was not frothing at the mouth with anticipation.
The Clash of the Titans story revolves around a man named Perseus who is a demigod, half man, half god. His father is Zeus and his mother is a human whom Zeus took advantage of. The Greek gods are mad at humanity because they know longer worship the gods of Olympus, so the Gods start a war with humanity to get them to worship them again. It seems that prayers and love from humans are what gives the Gods their strength. Perseus is mad at his father and the gods because his family is killed in a battle between the gods and humans. He then goes on a quest to save humanity from the Kraken, a powerful titan to be unleashed by Hades ten days after Zeus lays down an ultimatum to humanity about receiving their prayers.
With Kameorn in tow, and my buddy Maurice joining us at the Great Escape, we donned our 3D glass and prepared to Clash with the Titans. As the film unfolded before me, I had strong lack of emotion to the movie as the action scenes played out before me. For some reason, I couldn’t immerse myself in this new Clash of the Titans movie and let it take me away. The action scenes were good, but something was missing from everything. When the credits finally rolled, I asked Kameron what he thought and he gave me thumbs up saying the movie was an A. My friend Maurice also said the film was good, however, I couldn’t really say the same. I struggled to find out why I didn’t bond with the film, and I couldn’t even bring myself to write my review, which I usually do within minutes of returning home from a film. After mulling it over during the evening, I realized what was missing. Although this new Clash of the Titans movie had non-stop action scenes and dizzying special effects, the epic storytelling never developed. The director and writer seemed to think that it would be easier to get from one action scene to another, with the barest amount of story possible to sate our desire for mayhem. However, I have learned as an adult, that mayhem and action isn’t enough without a decent story. The original Clash of the Titans took its time to develop the story and characters, so that when the action came it mattered. The new Clash of the Titans didn’t take time to develop the story, or really allow us to bond with the hero Perseus. In the original Clash, Perseus took time to bond with the Pegasus, so it made sense when the Pegasus comes to save his life. In the new version, the Pegasus just shows up, and there is no bonding whatsoever. To me this new Clash of the Titans although fancier and more action packed, has no soul. I will say however, that I actually found the supporting characters to be more interesting than the main character. Maybe that is a case of the acting. Either way Clash of the Titans was like “empty carbs”, light on nutritional storytelling, but heavy on the action.