Friday, April 16, 2010

Clash of the Titans (2010)

A Big Wild Clash... Just Not Immortal Enough
by Reymundo Salao

First off, I apologize for being late in my reviews; I have been on vacation last week. And I also have been too busy with other things as well. This week, there are two post-apocalyptic movies being shown which are definitely worth watching. One is THE ROAD, which I have not watched yet, but I definitely trust is a good movie. And the other is BOOK OF ELI, which I have seen and I loved it. I hope ELI would be extended this week because I have yet to release my review for it. But for now, let me present you with my review of the 2010 remake of Clash of the Titans.

The film is a straight-up action movie; basically its the typical hero going through an identity crisis, trying to find out his purpose in life, that sort of storyline. After a while, you realize that the storyline is not really something the movie makes you conscious for; it seems obvious that it is only concerned with getting to the next evil monster to kill, almost in a purely video game style. The storyline presents you with a story of Perseus, trying to deny and renounce his place among the gods, yet aside from the few seconds of grief over the death of some important characters, we are not given enough time to comprehend how he really feels about why he continues to renounce his own privileges as a demigod (hopefully a longer cut with all the dramatic aspects present would be released on some kind of director's cut DVD someday). Obviously, the film's length is just enough to fill in all the action and eye candy required to make this a spectacular action-adventure movie that will satisfy its fantasy-craving audience. I am just glad that in its compactness and preference to focus on eye candy factors, it was still able to become a film that does NOT come off as totally idiotic.

It does not try to force itself to mix genres so as to widen its demographic; this means no annoying comic relief characters, and no needless romance. The bits of romance you get are mere seconds that pass oftentimes unnoticeably. And the slightest bit of comic relief never overdoes their little jokey moments. In fact, there really were no jokey moments that I can recall, just the natural amusing little moments with amusing side characters.

If you have watched the original 1981 Clash of the Titans movie, there are drastic changes in how it went by with its storyline and its characters. In the movie, the main opposing villain is Hades instead of Thetis, the identity of Calibos is altered, and the Io character was change also. But then again, both the new movie and the old movie are not very faithful to how Greek Mythology had written these characters. Everybody knows that Greek Mythology is far more dramatic than the simmered-down, audience friendly stories that Hollywood produces.

I really could not identify with all the hate towards this movie. Probably because I was aware that this was nothing more than just an eye candy movie. Leterrier is a visual director, action is his genre, and he excels well at it. He's not as impressive as Luc Besson or as avante garde as John Woo. But he gets the job done and oftentimes, his movies are good enough to impress and abundantly entertain me. He has now reached that Michael Bay popularity status, but the difference between him and Michael Bay is that Leterrier is not as dumb and lame as Bay (Bay tends to inject the dumbest humor and immaturely idiotic characters in his movies; Leterrier does not). I walked into Clash of the Titans, fully aware that I should not expect this to have some sort of dramatic or intellectual depth. What do you expect from a director who was chosen for the Hulk remake so that it could counter/replace Ang Lee's more dramatic version?

The only reason why I could not give it a great big praise is that it was not good enough to give justice to the original movie it is based on. The 1981 Clash of the Titans became a big fantasy movie of the 80's. It was iconic and is considered by many as a beloved classic. This new one, this remake, may have had been flashy and visually fantastic, but mere visuals would not make for a movie good enough to consider itself a remake of what already is a cinematic classic. To sum up, how would you enjoy this movie? Just enjoy the visuals and leave your brains at home.

In addition, I discourage you to watch this movie in 3-D, because this is the kind of movie that will make people hate 3-D cinema. Movies like Avatar or How to Train your Dragon are the kind of movies that will make you want to watch MORE of 3-D movies because these are movies that really shot in 3-D. "Clash.." was not shot in 3-D and just merely underwent 3-D conversion when AVATAR became a humongous hit, and made Clash's producers jump on the bandwagon. The 3-D conversion of Clash is lousy, dizzying, and makes its visual effects look lousy. You will be wasting your money on the 3-D version of this. Plus, many of you will be discouraged and will hate 3-D technology if you watch this. Watch it on 2-D instead.

No comments: