Monthly Archives: April 2010

CLASH OF THE TITANS

The remake of Clash of the Titans has the most boring action scenes since the remake of Bangkok Dangerous. The trailer made giant scorpions seem like the coolest monsters ever but the way that sequence actually turned out was pretty uninteresting. As might have been expected, it was just the music that made them so cool in the trailer.

Not to defend the non-action sequences. The script is very weird because the religious language (love, fear, redemption, blood, sacrifice) and categories of discussion were obviously taken from Christian concepts — e.g. a benevolent God created humans and loves his creation — then awkwardly mapped onto a Greek pantheon: Zeus loves all mortals (!) because he created them (!!) out of grace (!!!).

That would be kind of interesting as a straightforward religious mash-up, but then other bits are sprinkled on top from eclectic sources (e.g. J.M. Barrie) to make the gods a bunch of giant Tinkerbells whose strength is dependent on the mortals’ prayer life (in the form of worship or fear — incompatible concepts here — depending on the god). The idea of a divine being whose existence is contingent on the feelings of his own creations is so mind-bottling that the guy who thought it up deserves a prize for philosophical ingenuity.

If it is unfair of me to criticize an action movie for its theology being derivative and nonsensical (point granted) then let me restrict my criticism to the visuals and set pieces which were comparably derivative of Fellowship of the Ring and Pirates of the Caribbean (with some minor Mummy influence) without providing anything visually original in exchange. I guess I liked Charon’s boat (whose design was itself derivative of Wolfgang Peterson’s Trojan horse), but Charon himself looked like he was a prop stolen off an amusement park ride.

If it is unfair of me to criticize a remake for being derivative in the first place (point granted) then let me just thank the filmmakers for finally providing conclusive proof of how ridiculous it would have been for David Benioff and Wolfgang Peterson to include the councils of the gods in Troy. Who cares if their adaptation did violence to Homer’s text — it just would have been stupid to see a soldier who is about to receive his deathblow suddenly spirited away by his patron goddess.

To conclude: The only thing interesting to look at in Clash of the Titans is Sam Worthington’s fascinatingly shaped head, even though it still distracts me with the thought that his skull is actually shiny metal underneath.