In 2010 Hollywood once again mined Greek mythology to create a big summer special effects blockbuster. Clash of the Titans was a staggering box office success, which crushingly and predictably lead to talk of a sequel. In 2012, Wrath of the Titans was released recouping the money it cost in little over a week. Like its predecessor Wrath of the Titans follows Perseus (Sam Worthington), ten years after the events with the Kraken, who is now attempting to break into the great prison Tartarus with fellow demi-God Agenor (Toby Kebbell). Following the help of Hephaestus (Bill Nighy) they fight their way in to rescue Perseus’ father Zeus (Liam Neeson) from his brothers Hades (Ralph Fiennes) and Ares (Edgar Ramirez) who intend to release their imprisoned father Kronos.
A brief minute introduction reintroduces the audience to the main characters and then it’s straight on with the action. Like any quest film, the story is predictable, but it doesn’t attempt to be clever, instead using the knowledge of the audience to be able to trim the excesses that plagued the first film. Whereas Clash of the Titans mangled the mythology in order to present one mind-numbing set-piece after another, Wrath of the Titans fits into a lithe 90-minute spectacle, which benefits it immensely. It’s still preposterous, but at least it doesn’t hang about.
The added cast members of Nighy and Kebbell are excellent, really throwing themselves into their roles without worrying about appearing silly. They, like Fiennes and Neeson in the original are aware that Wrath of the Titans is a big, loud nonsensical beast and so just try to have fun with their roles. Sadly like many blockbuster, special effects epics the dialogue is woeful, leading to scenes with this fine selection of actors being reduced to them shouting at each other until they are superseded by some special effect or another.
Sam Worthington once again proves he has neither the charisma nor acting ability to carry a big unwieldy film like this. His accent is also off-putting, having switched from dodgy American to full-blooded Australian. Having such a charisma black hole at its heart means that for vast portions of the Wrath of the Titans, the audience has very little invested. yet with this, Clash of the Titans and Avatar under his belt, he’s fast becoming one of the most bankable stars in Hollywood.
With a paint-by-numbers plot, solid special effects and more likeable actors, Wrath of the Titans follows in the same vein as Clash of the Titans, but does it in a quicker and more effective way.