Wrath of the Titans is a sequel in every sense of the word. As the follow-up to the 2010 Clash of the Titans remake, Wrath does little more than recycle mythical characters and put them on an epic-less quest. It’s a watered-down action flick that could have had a potentially good underlying conflict between Zeus and his brother Hades. However, the focus is back on Perseus (Sam Worthington) again, without the fear of any real threat. The biggest laugh is in the naming of this film. It’s called Wrath of the Titans, but only one of the twelve key Titans gets any play. Cronus, ousted father of Zeus, shows up for a brief moment, but doesn’t even get to talk about why he’s so darn wrathful. The Blu-ray release collects several behind-the-scenes featurettes, which explore the making of the movie from the perspective of both gods and humans.
The film begins with Perseus retired from life as a demigod after his fabled battle with the Kraken. He is raising a son and living the life of a simple fisherman. However, a demigod can never really sit on the sidelines when his father is Zeus (Liam Neeson), ruler of the Olympians. Soon Zeus shows up to request Persius’ help. Regretfully, his son promptly rejects his father’s quest. Besting the Kraken was adventure enough for a lifetime.
Zeus goes off on his own to confront his brother Hades (Ralph Fiennes), who he now knows is helping to free their father Cronus. When Zeus meets Hades, the ruler of Olympus is captured and betrayed by his son Ares (Édgar Ramírez). It’s a potentially good moment and crux for the real relationship conflict of this movie: the squabbles between brothers. Poseiden and Zeus pitted against Hades and Ares against his half-brother Perseus. In this moment, years (and potentially centuries in the case of the gods) of sibling rivalry are supposed to come to fruition. This movie was supposed to feel like the finale in a war between brothers. Instead, all the conflicts are outwardly pushed towards Cronus who is about to break free from his hellish prison. Since the Titan doesn’t even have any dialogue, all you can really say is, “Who cares?”
There are several great moments of CG excellence throughout the movie. The Chimera and the Makhai are beautiful and deadly to watch in action. The Cyclops and the Minotaur are also great works of CG, but their battle sequences are far from inspired.
Sadly, in Wrath of the Titans, Cronus and the mythical beasts that have escaped from Hades rarely pose any tangible threat. There’s not a single moment of suspense where you’re wondering what will happen to one of the heroes. The monsters never have a moment to shine, where you really see the kind of destruction they are capable of. If someone gets hurt, it’s typically an extra. Persius and friends are all but impervious to any real suffering. Wrath of the Titans boils down to a rosy adventure with a lot of loud explosions and little intrigue. There’s also a curveball relationship thrown in at the end.
The Blu-ray can be watched in Maximum movie mode, from either the gods or humans perspective. It’s a nice touch. The creators focus in on the gods’ tale (as well as offering behind-the-scenes information on the gods) or the human side of the story as well as the relative creative choices chosen within each subset. You can also watch the featurettes as focus points individually from the menu screen.