Sunday 12 June 2016

Clash of the Titans

I learned that today is a very special anniversary: Clash of the Titans is 35 years old. Now people probably don't know all that much about the original, since there was a remake of it. That is a shame: the remake did not have the special effects and wonderful creatures done by the great Ray Harryhausen. I did not bother seeing the remake yet, although I caught glimpses of it on TV and I'm not planning to watch it any time soon. The original, however, is a childhood favourite of mine. I must have watched it first when I was five or six. It is the movie that started my long love story with Greek mythology. Yes, it is sometimes cheesy and the acting is hammy and/or wooden. But what a casting! What characters in their own right are the monsters of Harryhausen! And with all its flaws, it still understood very well the morally ambivalent nature of Greek gods and heroes. In the movie as in the source material, they are neither completely good nor completely evil. Zeus acts out of selfish reasons, Thetis (brilliant Maggie Smith!) is at worst an indulgent mother, Calibos himself is truly a tragic character. The Kraken does what he does on order, giving punishment according to the gods' desires and Medusa... Well, what else would you do if you were a monster like Medusa, stranded on an island and cursed by the gods? Medusa, by the way, still gives me the creeps to this day. So yes, great stuff. And to celebrate its anniversary, here is its trailer.

1 comment:

Debra She Who Seeks said...

The moral ambivalence of most pagan deities (not just the Greek ones) is a refreshingly honest view of the nature of the Divine, I think.