Starring: Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Danny Huston, Edgar Ramires, John Bell, Rosamund Pike
Running Time: 95 minutes
Extras: Deleted Scenes – more available on 3D Blu-ray and Blu-raay release
Those unfortunate enough to catch 2010’s CLASH OF THE TITANS could be forgiven for approaching sequel WRATH OF THE TITANS with trepidation – or avoiding it altogether. Set eight years after his defeat of the Kraken, Perseus (Worthington) is a widower after his wife Io’s apparent death and now raising son Helius (Bell) alone. Elsewhere, his Father Zeus (Neeson) is captured by Perseus’s brother Ares (Ramirez), and Uncle Hades (Fiennes) as they plan to unleash the Titans onto the world, destroying every living thing. This would be the Wrath of the title. Whilst not as intolerably dull as CLASH OF THE TITANS, WRATH gives it a good run for its money.
A lead actor as limited as Sam Worthington needs support around him: Neeson, Fiennes, Huston, and to a lesser extent Rosamund Pike as Queen Andromeda are able to cover some of his deficiencies but he is still the major problem in a film full of holes. The screenplay, by David Johnson and Dan Mazeau, is laden with cliches and terrible lines, but does at least have a smattering of humour, which was sorely lacking from CLASH. The effects are tremendous and each of the creatures is beautifully realised, the only miss hit being Cronos, who resembles a big, black, flaming lump. The action sequences with these creatures however leave a lot to be desired though: clunkily put together, they never feel real enough to resonate. Now onto Worthington. Perhaps surrounding him with A-listers isn’t the way forward; at one point Neeson acts him off the screen lying down, and Fiennes – stupid wig and all – is able to convey more emotion with a lifted eyebrow than Worthington manages in the whole 95 minutes. It is unfortunate that a film can live or die on the strength of its leading man – not a surprise given the dearth of emotion, or story on show – but WRATH OF THE TITANS falls at Worthington’s sword.
WRATH OF THE TITANS can do little to improve on CLASH OF THE TITANS. There is a film-stealing performance from Bill Nighy – for once not the droll Englishman – but the highlights are few and far between. In a year with AVENGERS ASSEMBLE, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, and THE HUNGER GAMES WRATH OF THE TITANS fails to compete on any level; it has neither the fun of AVENGERS, or the scale of Christopher Nolan’s trilogy-ender, what it does have though is a feeling of missed opportunity. From the director of BATTLE LOS ANGELES were we to expect anything else?