Desmond Davis original CLASH OF THE TITANS (1981) owns me to this day! Now that I think of it, it’s kind of odd that it never got a sequel of its own. I mean the thing made coin! Oh well. I was so-so on the 2010 remake though, it was kind of flat and it paled in comparison to its source material. And now we got the sequel to the remake, WRATH OF THE TITANS, on the chopping block. I got to say it, I went in there optimistic for one reason. 1- Jonathan Liebesman was directing it. Being that I adored what he did with BATTLE LOS ANGELES, I was curious to see if he would bring that same energy here. So how was Part Deux? Uneven, but I had a blast with it anyways!
Being that the characters and the stage were set up in the remake, this follow up, thankfully didn’t waste any time in slamming my face in the mud and taking me for a ride. Five minute set-up, beasties thrown into the mix, boom, it’s on! The action driven narrative greased me right! Not a dull moment here! The goal was to grab by the collar and entertain! Mission accomplished on my sorry ass! Liebesman’s keen eye behind the camera definitely facilitated that! I so dug his wide areal shots, kinetic camera movements, epic push-ins and the gritty feel he brought to the piece. Yup this sequel felt more down and dirty than its predecessor and I esteemed that. Moreover; the CGI fiends were tight! Detail oriented designs, and stellar execution! My favorite had to be them giant Cyclops! Mucho impressive! That scene pulled out a pinch of awww out of me. Always good. And thank the Gods for the fantastic 3D! I couldn't tell it was Post Conversion! It really added to my experience. I was imbued in the world of the movie, was blown away by the eye popping scenery (the vast sea, the mountains, the underworld) and blinked and ducked cause of stuff coming out the screen. I consider that 3D well done! Add to that a badass score (must own) by Javier Navarrete, able performances for the type of affair it was (Sam Worthington, Ralph Fiennes and Liam Neeson were amusing to clock), random moments of horror-ish tension (all about that labyrinth scene) and a couple of hearty laughs (mostly caused by scene thieves Toby Kebbell and Bill Nighy) and you get a lean and potent shot of easy fun!
So what stopped this one from getting a higher mark on my “f*ck yeah” scale? Let’s start with that frustrating Hollywood tendency to cut action scenes too tightly with a shaky camera, quick cut overdose and countless close shots. Lots of the action bits were lessened by that technique here. It’s difficult to get engaged 100% by a physical get-down when you’re only able to compute half of what's going down on screen. Big blur does NOT equal visceral. It’s called WIDE SHOTS people! Look for it, it’s under F and U! I also could have benefited from more monster action. Some of them weren't used to their full capacity (Why Kronos decided to chill out by that mountain for the whole of the finale was beyond me, dude, GET IN THERE!). And was I alone in losing in getting confused a couple of times? The Cyclops scene was a good example of that. It was only at the end of the sequence that I figured out there were more than one of them. Sloppy. Then we had the half baked love story wasting screen time. Look if you HAVE TO get that KISS at the end; how about building up to it? At least Rosamund Pike’s deep blue eyes kept me interested in that angle to some degree. Girl looked good! And speaking of the ending, the final frames were cheesy and unnecessary. They evoked giggles out of me and the audience I saw it with. NOTE: Why was Ares (Édgar Ramírez) so damn emo? He’s the God of War not the God of Tissues! I didn't get it…
All in all though, l I still got some easy kicks out of this one. The furious pace, the striking imagery and the bang on 3D made it a more rewarding watch than the remake. Question is; you gonna feel the Wrath this weekend or what? Your move creeps!