Wrath of the Titans ★★½

I should have hated Wrath Of The Titans. It's exactly the type of movie that would usually grind my gears and piss me off to the point that I can't wait for it to end. Basically, the one and only aspect of this film that anyone involved gave so much as a flying [frick] about is the visuals. And I'm really not exaggerating. At some points it felt as if director Jonathan Liebsman was running around waving his hands and calling for his actors to phone it in more and spout even dumber dialog. Everyone just flings exposition at each other and stupidly repeat the names of places as they arrive to them to their companions. At one point Ares exclaims "Here we are, at Tartarus" or something to that effect, and I just wished Hades had of replied: "No shit asshole, I live here". The story is your basic "point A to point B" adventure and even still it makes hardly any sense, with continuity mistakes and silly Deus Ex Machina left right and center. The only attempt at adding any depth to the plot is to give everyone Daddy issues. Seriously, EVERYONE gets Daddy issues. Zeus, the fracking Father of the Gods, gets to have Daddy issues. So like I said, I should have hated it. I'll try my best to explain why I didn't.

I'll start by echoing what many reviewers have said about the special effects and visuals in the movie, they are spectacular. A pretty good 3D conversion helps, but that might just be because it's such a vast improvement over the last attempt. The creatures are brilliantly designed and realized, and there are some breathtaking set pieces. When Perseus and co and battling a beastie there is never a dull moment, highlights being the first dust up with a two headed, fire breathing dog..thing (I'm sure someone will point out its name) and the final boss battle with Kronos. Ok, so what you may ask? What good is great action when everything else falls flat? Well ordinarily that would be my stance, but for some reason I found myself enjoying this.

Although it's all over the place narratively, it's actually still an improvement on Clash Of The Titans which pretty much lost me after an hour. There is also a bit more of a sense of fun in this one, helped along by Tobby Kebbel as the Demi-God son of Poseidon. He plays the comedy relief sidekick role pretty well, actually managing a few laughs (well, smirks) along the way. Another welcome addition to the cast is Rosamund Pike as Andromeda. Although both characters seem to be getting built up to make some kind of difference at the end, unfortunately neither ends up doing much aside from shouting at the bad guys. Less successful are other new additions Bill Nighy and Édgar Ramirez. The usually dependable Nighy just mugs it up with a stupid "By Gum" accent and is not very funny doing it. While Ramírez is just flat out bad as Ares, God Of Bore. Liam Neeson and Ralph Feinnes reprise their roles as warring God-brothers Zeus and Hades, and while neither of these guys can ever really be bad, they are most definitely just there to have a giggle at each other's beards and collect a paycheck. Then there's Sam Worthington as Perseus. He's..not very good. Not terrible, but a serious lack of screen presence going on. This time he drops any attempt at an accent (good idea since he can't maintain one) and plays Perseus full on Aussie. It actually helps matters because we aren't taken out of the movie whenever he slips back into it like in the first one. He handles the action well enough, but this film would have benefited so much from a more charismatic lead.

But still, despite its many shortcoming I did find myself happy enough watching. There are worse movie of this ilk (anything by Michael Bay for example) but this still could, and should have been better. If all you care about is action and effects then you will definitely enjoy Wrath Of The Titans, and even people who usually like a little more substance with their carnage might still get something from it. A load of bollocks then, but a fairly enjoyable load of bollocks all the same.