Press Play: Clash of the Titans

Press Play: Clash of the Titans

Jul 28, 2010

This week's must-see DVD/BD, and why we're lovin' it.

What? Clash of the Titans (2010)

Who? Directed by Louis Leterrier and starring Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Jason Flemyng, Gemma Arterton and Alexa Davalos

Why? This new Clash of the Titans is a very different animal than the beloved 1981 film starring Harry Hamlin as demigod Perseus, the son of Zeus. Now we have Avatar star Sam Worthington—currently the go-to guy for summer blockbusters—as Perseus and plenty of impressive CG effects instead of Ray Harryhausen's stop-motion animation. Whether that is a good or bad thing is open to debate, but be thankful the DVD and Blu-ray of the new Clash of the Titans is in 2D because the post-production 3D rush job it got for its theatrical release was terrible and worth forgetting about. Free of the distracting halos around the gods and the dim picture, it's easier to immerse yourself in the Greek myth of Perseus watching helplessly as his family falls to Hades's (Fiennes) wrath. Vowing to avenge them, Perseus volunteers to lead a dangerous mission to send Hades and his monstrous Kraken back to the underworld.

Clash of the Titans lacks the kitschy charm of its forbearer but is a fun adventure that includes a few little nods to the 1981 film, like a cameo by Bubo the golden mechanical owl. Some of the most thrilling moments in this remake are when Worthington and his team battle a pack of giant scorpions, the confrontation with a slithery Medusa in her lair, and the final battle against the gigantic Kraken as Worthington flies around the monster on the winged horse, Pegasus. We wish filmmakers would use more practical effects than designing fake worlds and creatures on their Macintoshes, but even the most anti-CG crank will find something in Clash of the Titans that makes his jaw drop. Worthington might not be the most charismatic leading man around (he plays the same role in the same deadpan manner here that he did in Avatar, Terminator: Salvation and pretty much any movie he's been in), but he's likable enough to muscle his way through any adventure thrown at him, including this one.

What Else? Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain deleted scenes, but that is all they have in common. Titans fans will want the HD exclusive bonus features on the Blu-ray, including "Maximum Movie Mode—Harnessing the Gods," an enhanced picture-in-picture commentary with Worthington, Neeson, Fiennes and Leterrier.

You'll want to check out: A featurette on how Worthington prepared for his role (he always looks ready to us) and an alternate ending in which Perseus confronts Zeus on Mount Olympus.

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