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7.25 out of 10
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8.75 out of 10
Disney's Frozen movie
10.0 out of 10
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6.75 out of 10
8.25 out of 10

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Wrath of the Titans 3D

Like Father, Like Son

Rated: PG-13   Intense sequences of fantasy and sci-fi violence
Release Date: March 30, 2012
Runtime: 1 hr 39 mins

Director: Jonathan Liebesman
Writers:  Dan Mazeau, David Johnson, Greg Berlanti
Cast: Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Sam Worthington, Rosamund Pike, Bill Nighy, Danny Huston, Toby Kebbell

SYNOPSIS: Perseus is called upon again to save the world, including his father Zeus, when the Titans are released to wreck havok upon humans and gods alike.

REVIEW: Jonathan Liebesman, director of Battle: Los Angeles, takes a Kraken (is that a bad pun?) at the sequel to the reboot of The Clash of the Titans. But tackling sequels to rebooted franchises should be no problem for Liebesman has already showed promise with another reboot sequel with a chainsaw instead of a sword, 
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning. Based on characters and screenplay from Beverley Cross, newcomer Dan Mazeau, Waking Dead, Red Riding Hood and Orphan screenwriter David Johnson, and Green Lantern writer Greg Berlanti extend the tale of the demi-god Perseus and his quest for a normal human life.
Kraken slayer Perseus (Sam Worthington, Man on a Ledge) has settled into an ordinary fisherman's life raising his son Helius (John Bell, upcoming Battleship) after the death of his wife. When Zeus (Liam Neeson, The Grey) visits Perseus with news of a growing threat by Chronos and many escaped Titans, the god of gods pleads for his son to assist him in overcoming the menace. When Zeus, Poseidon (Danny Huston, The Warrior's Way) and Ares (Edgar Ramirez, Vantage Point) travel to the underworld to enlist Hades (Ralph Fiennes, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2), only to be betrayed to be used to reawaken the weak and slumbering Chronos from his labyrinth prison. When his village is attacked by a stray Titan, Perseus takes the quest to save humanity only in order to keep his son safe. He seeks out Queen Andromeda (Rosamund Pike, The Big Year) and Poseidon's demi-god son Agenor (Toby Kebbell, The Conspirator) in order to find another fallen god, the weapon master Hephaestus (Bill Nighy, Arthur Christmas), and a weapon to defeat Chronos.

Wrath of the Titans manages to do one thing right out of the gate. The sequel shrugs off the confines of the rebooted Clash of the Titans and the difficult expectations of living up to the Harry Hamlin original. Zeus sets the stage for when needs to be done in the sequel 
with a quick narrative of Perseus' exploits from the original and an unscheduled visit to Perseus to lay out the quest that he will ultimately need to undertake. When his family is threatened, Perseus must weight his ordinary simple humanity side against the demi-god side filled with the godlike power and responsibilities he possesses. 

Keeping the cast streamlined and the story focused, Wrath of the Titans focuses on one simple concept - family. Ares rebels against his father Zeus because he envies Perseus as Zeus' favorite son. Brothers Hades and Zeus clash over Hades banishment to the underworld, and Hades betrayal of Zeus in support of their own father, Chronos. Poseidon's demi-god son Agenor is considered a 'great disappointment to his father but he tries to become a hero in spite of his failed reputation. And although Perseus accepts the quest to save the world against the Titan, he does it simply to save the life of his son.

With a trio of Cyclops, Titans like a two-headed fire-breathing canine-like beast, conjoined warrior swordsmen who have each other's back, and a Minotaur guarding a prison labyrinth, Wrath of the Titans is a fun fantasy popcorn film that supplies plenty of eye candy that gets better and better once Perseus, Andromeda, Agenor, and Hepaestus square off against Ares and attempt to break into the Underworld prison that houses Chronos. The post produced 3D still doesn't dazzle, but it has come a long way from the 3D debacle from Clash of the Titans that soured many a moviegoer for 3D films.

In Perseus' ancient world, the Greek deities are slowly losing their unfathomable power because human society has outgrown their use for the ever manipulative, self-serving and silent gods. They are so depowered, in fact, that they can no longer keep omnipotent tabs on their former followers without the follower inciting prayer to a specific god. Only the most powerful gods, Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades, still retain a fraction of their former glory. Ares, the god of war, has become more powerful since battles still rage on the earthly plane. The age of the gods is coming to a close, but the fruits of their 'labors' has left the earth filled with demi-god offspring trying to love ordinary lives.

Wrath of the Titans is a gritty, action-oriented ancient fantasy without the stylized reds of 300 or the golds of Immortals. Liebesman removes the silvers of Clash of the Titans for the sequel. Toby Kebbells' Agenor supplies some lightness and Bill Nighy's Hephaestus supply some craziness to break up the drama, but the rest of the cast is focused on the task at hand, saving the ancient world from a more ancient threat.

WORTH: Matinee or DVD

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