Today is Thursday, August 17, 2017

At the Movies with Doc

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The highly anticipated remake of the 1981 classic 'Clash of the Titans' hit the silver screen this past weekend. 'Clash' is a film immersed in Greek mythology, much as the recent 'Percy Jackson'. Director Louis Leterrier was handed the reins to direct 'Clash' when the original choice, Stephen Norrington, stepped down because he had never seen the original (one would think a quick trip to his local Family Video would have been in order!). Sam Worthington plays the lead role of Perseus, the demi-god son of Zeus. Worthington burst onto the Hollywood scene in 2009, first out-shining Christian Bale in 'Terminator Salvation' and then being seen by nearly every person on the planet playing the lead role of Jake Sully in the blockbuster ‘Avatar'. Worthington adequately pulls off the role that Harry Hamlin originally played, bringing a little more testosterone than the original role called for. Liam Neeson plays the part of Zeus. He reportedly sought the role in this film because his sons are big fans of Greek mythology, and what part could be bigger in Greek mythology than that of Zeus, King of the gods. It was during the time Neeson was filming 'Clash' that he lost his wife Natasha Richardson, who died in a tragic ski accident. Mr. Neeson is involved in another big remake of sorts later this summer when he reprises the role of Col. John 'Hannibal' Smith in the Big-screen version of the 80's T.V. hit, 'The A-Team'. 'Clash' tried to stay true to its original. Fans of the 1981 version will surely spot the cameo appearance of Bubo, the mechanical owl who often aided Perseus in the earlier film. Some may be a little disappointed in Bubo's reduced role, while many others probably applaud the decision to keep the noisy owl’s film-time ultra-brief! The 2010 version of 'Clash of the Titans' succeeds on many levels. There have been a few technological advances in the 29 years since Ray Harryhawsen's "stop-motion" animation was used to create the visual special effects in the 1981 version. Now, with computer-generated imagery (CGI) being standard for today's Hollywood effects, creating the big-screen creatures that Perseus must face is a relative piece of cake (even for a mere mortal). I particularly enjoyed the scene involving the snake-haired Medusa, and of course I don't think anyone would want to face the mythological monster of the sea....the Kraken! And even though 'Clash' succeeds visually, I personally wish the Producers of 'Clash' had not decided (after the fact) to make the film 3-D. I do not feel that 3-D added much to the film, though it was not as dark and distracting as some critics have tried to claim. Overall, the story and acting in 'Clash of the Titans' were just average; however, I doubt they made this film with the Oscars in mind. 'Clash' is NOT an epic like Oscar Best Picture 'Gladiator', but it was not a disappointment either (especially if you ARE a fan of the original). 4 eyeballs:  Must SEE!3 eyeballs:  Almost 20/20                       Doc's advice for this film:  2 1/2 eyeballs2 eyeballs:  Eyedrops required      1 eyeball:    May cause blindness!
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