Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Clash of the Titans (2010)

Before I begin, I want to say that while I have seen the Harryhausen original, it's been a while. When I saw it, I found it to be enjoyable, but without nostalgia-tinted lenses, it's not amazing. Which is fine. It did some creative stuff, and the camp value you get nowadays when viewing it is a warm feeling. The remake of Clash of the Titans is just that-- a remake. Some things will be different, but the overall idea is the same. Except, since it's been made today, the camp value is gone, but the visuals have been nicely updated and in some cases improved from the original.

With that said, I enjoyed Clash, but not immensely.

Don't get me wrong, it's a lot of fun, especially with the scene-stealing performances of Liam Neeson as Zeus and Ralph Fiennes as Hades. I always love watching these two actors, no matter what universe they're in, and having them act together was a real treat. Suffice it to say these actors captured all the campiness of the original and make it work in a surprisingly commanding way. Sam Worthington... well, he's got that melancholy look down, and he's added fierce and solemn to his repertoire. But the original Perseus wasn't spectacular either, so that's moot.

Let's get to why people really are watching Clash of the Titans: the monsters. I found them to be an improvement almost all across the board. The scorpions have made a purely logical transition to CG, and it comes across nicely. Calibos doesn't look like a troll anymore, which is refreshing. And the Kraken... well, there's no comparison. It's easy to see where a lot of the creative juices and money went in this picture.

Why the Pegasus is black in the remake has no real explanation, other than to stand out. There's nothing wrong with the original, so the change was pointless. Medusa was a bit of a disappointment. She was one of the best things about the eighties version, and in this one, with everything fiercer, she doesn't stand out at all. She in fact loses some of her fright factor from the original. Sad.

Other than that, there's not much to say. The pacing was good, and kept me from going to the bathroom any time in the two hours the movie was playing. The score was nicely energetic, but not memorable. All in all, see it if you enjoy a good summer blockbuster and want to see one a month early, before the season starts with Iron Man 2. But to be honest, I liked The Lightning Thief better.

My rating: 6.5/10

Coming Soon: LOST Season 3. And some books. Really. I promise. Harry Dresden won't be the only thing you get this month.

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