How does one go about making Ralph Fiennes and Liam Neeson look like bad actors? It may be the only thing Clash of the Titans succeeds at. Let’s take a look.
In this update, heroic grandstanding and cheapo monsters have been replaced with hollow whispering and nifty creature design. Characters come and go as needed with very little reason for being there in the first place. In fact the only reason for most of the characters to exist is to help out during the much advertised scorpion scene or to die stupidly during the incredibly boring Medusa scene.Yes, this new Clash of the Titans is a marvel of how to make a movie by committee. Louis Leterrier’s edgy and character driven style of story telling (Unleashed and the Ed Norton version of The Hulk) is all but non-existant, except for two kind of cool moments. The fact that he was directing the movie made me excited to see it. Instead you get a bunch of executives playing at the 50-yard-line not knowing how exactly to cross a creative end zone with a singular vision intact. But wait, the television commercials claim it’s the #1 movie right now. And it is! It made a whopping $61 million opening weekend. Why?
The 50-yard-line committee knew they could charge $18 a ticket if they converted to 3D in post production. I am all for making money but not at the expense of the movie. You see, when shooting for 2D these days you include a lot of quick cuts and close ups to make it exciting; which in both cases doesn’t work very well for 3D. I saw it in 2D, hearing only bad things about the 3D version. The special effects they adjusted for 3D all looked like they were happening in another plain of existence in 2D. Nothing matched up. But 3D/2D, whatever, this doesn’t make the movie bad.
It’s the script that does. Lines of dialogue are repeated exponentially throughout. Zeus is told 3 times how Hades is able to survive then is suddenly surprised at the end to hear it again. Not much of a God. It’s a terrible mixture of tonality. Do we play this as camp or do we play this as serious? And if we play it as both, how do we do that? They certainly don’t know.
The friend I was with enjoyed it saying, “It was exactly what I expected it to be.” If we expect our movies to be this bad can we at least hope that they aren’t this boring.
I truly hope Sam Worthington gets a chance to live up to his potential in the near future, I hope the same for the underused and confusing Djinn.