Wrath of the Titans is long on action and short on smarts

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Starring Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, and Ralph Fiennes. Rated 14A. Now playing

So many gods, so much angst. But we’ll get to the family hang-ups in a minute. First, you may ask, is there crazy-ass 3-D action and mythological creatures in Wrath of the Titans? Does Ralph Fiennes still look like a crazy-ass street preacher and Liam Neeson like a crazy-ass homeless guy who’s lost his shopping cart, as they did in the earlier Clash of the Titans? And, incidentally, wouldn’t you think that, logically, wrath would come first and then maybe some clashing? Okay, never mind that last one.

Hmm, one does recall several cyclops, some multiappendaged, double-noggin demons, and a somewhat wrathful minotaur in this film, that all seem like they might look cool. Plus, the gods blast each other and the hapless mortals with superdestructive fireballs, and there’s lots of underworld action (as opposed to underwear action—sorry), including a wacky shifting labyrinth. But everything is such a blur that even semi-alert mortals can’t get a decent look. (Although, importantly, the minotaur does appear to have a terrible mucous problem.)

But other things aren’t moving very fast. Sam Worthington’s brain might be one of those things, but let’s say that it’s his character, demigod Perseus, who seems only demismart as he leads an expedition to save his father, Zeus (Neeson). The bad gods—including Hades (Fiennes) and Perseus’s Titan grandpappy, Kronos (unidentifiable molten blob)—apparently don’t mind waiting while Perseus, Greece’s Queen Andromeda (Rosamund Pike), and Poseidon’s goofy demigod son, Agenor (Toby Kebbell)—have their adventurous expedition.

And poor Perseus, half-bro Ares (Edgar Ramírez), Zeus, and his bro Hades have to yell about their abandonment issues and sibling rivalry over those wacky special effects. “I’m only half a god,” whines Perseus. Such insecurity. Luckily, Bill Nighy, as the god Hephaestus, is busy pretending he’s in a Monty Python sketch. “Don’t worry,” he says. “There are many useless demigods.”


Watch the trailer for Wrath of the Titans.

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