‘Titans’ a big myth-take
It’s been a while since I’ve brushed the dust off the works of Homer or Hesiod, but I don’t recall so many exclamation marks in the text. According to ‘Clash of the Titans,’ though, everyone of the era punctuated every word with a number of the marks, even when they whispered.
Spyros: “One day!! Somebody’s got to make a stand!!! One day!! Somebody’s got to say ‘Enough!!!!”
Zeus: “This is the end!!!!”
Perseus: “This is just the START!!!!!”
Hades: “I have watched from the underworld… it is time for the mortals to pay!!!!”
Harry Hamlin: “Why hast thou forsaken me with nary a cameo in this film?!!!!!!!!!!”
So perhaps the last one was not included, but it’s as though the makers of ‘Titans’ are subscribing to the ‘300’ regulations of line delivery, insisting every conversation escalate into a battle cry and every word be heard three towns over.
This may have been effective if there was even a hint at dramatic build-up in any scene. But director Louis Leterrier does not want to waste time with “feelings” or “development.” No, in his update of the 1981 camp sword-and-sandal flick he’s happier suiting up and plunging us directly into combat after combat after combat.
It’s a tiring, mirthless slog that is helped none by lead Sam (‘Avatar’) Worthington, who takes these Homeric high jinx so damn seriously. Look, dude, you are in a film with giant scorpions, a lady with snakes for dreadlocks and Liam Neeson looking like a super shiny member of the KISS Army. Take notes from Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, and have some fun with it.
This update pulls the basic elements of the first film together – Perseus (Worthington) realizes he’s half-man, half-god and decides to confront daddy, Zeus (Neeson), about his years as an absentee father. Along his journey he meets a nest of oversized scorpions, the Stygian Witches, the mutated Calibus, Medusa, Pegasus, and, of course, the Kraken (which is actually of Norse mythology, but that’s hardly a nit to pick in this film).