Wrath of the Titans – waiting for titans

MAJOR SPOILER ALERT! There is no wrath and there are no titans! You would think that in a film named Wrath of the Titans, there would most definitely be a violent battle royale, featuring at least a few of the powerful twelve deities in Greek mythology. Unfortunately, the only titan in the film has a short cameo, before he too disappears, obviously having been alerted by the other titans as to how poor this film is.

Wrath of the Titans, of course, is the sequel to Clash of the Titans (2010), a mediocre fantasy film which somehow managed godlike box office returns of nearly 500 million dollars worldwide. The good news is that this sequel, unlike its predecessor, has decent 3D effects. The bad news is that with uninspiring visuals, and laughably poor dialogue, this sequel is even worse than the first one.

The movie begins ten years after the Kraken was killed by Perseus (Sam Worthington), who is now making a living as a fisherman along with his ten-year-old son Heleus (John Bell).  We note that Perseus is now completely uninterested in the events of the gods, when visited by his father Zeus (Liam Nesson), who warns him of the weakening of the underworld prison of Tartarus.

Later, when Zeus meets brothers Hades (Ralph Fiennes), Poseidon (Danny Huston), and son Ares (Edgar Ramirez), he finds himself under attack by Hades and Ares, and taken prisoner. We learn that Hades and Ares, in danger of losing their immortality, make a deal with their father Kronos to restore his strength by draining Zeus, and thus able to retain their own powers in return.

When the prison of Tartarus breaks, the monsters are unleashed, coming to the mortal world. Perseus is found by Poseidon at the Mount of Idols, where is he told of the events that have led to his father’s capture.  The thief Agenor (Toby Kebbell) later joins Perseus, as do the forces of Queen Andromeda (Rosamund Pike). As the story progresses, our heroes try to liberate Zeus, and save the mortal world, and fix this dysfunctional family of gods.

You would expect a big budget CGI film like Wrath of the Titans to be able to draw on the beauty of Greek mythology and to be a visual extravaganza, but it is largely dull. In fact, the vast majority of the budget seems to have been spent on a wide variety of explosions, rather than the story. More disappointingly, powerful gods like Zeus and Hades look like mere mortals rather than powerful divine beings. Regrettable still are the performances on display by the two titans of cinema, Ralph Fiennes and Liam Nesson, who like this film, are as bland as a Greek salad without dressing.

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