It's not even summer yet and Clash of the Titans is exactly what most people expect from the average summer blockbuster; it's loud and shiny, underdeveloped and over-funded. It also contains the best example of how Hollywood might kill its new golden goose before it's even really hatched yet.
Say what you want about the movie itself, but it's a big, stupid ride. Much like the 1981 original, the point is not to be invested in things like character and plot, you need only be there to witness the spectacle and special effects. Most of the actors seem to be having fun hamming it up, except for Sam Worthington, who's always a little too into it, which begs the question, "Does he get it?" Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes seem to chew through their parts like kids through a candy store- there's so much sweet stuff to play with, but none of it is good for you.
The same goes for regard to history or actual Greek mythology. What we get here is a mishmash of several different legends from several different cultures. Nothing in this version of Clash of the Titans would be recommended to a high schooler looking to get ahead on studying Greek mythology, rather its crossed lines represent more of a setback. Said high schoolers would be better off reading Frank Miller's 300 for a history lesson, or watching Gerard Butler prance around in a beard and little else in varying degrees of speed. But it's all in the name of good fun, right?
I don't know if the same thing can be applied to the screenplay, though. It's full of clichéd dialogue and paper-thin characterizations. Again, we're not paying to see Shakespeare, all we want is some badass dudes with swords f*cking up some badass monsters, so you can't really lay blame on the writers. If anything, that's the studio's fault. No matter how you cut it, this was a formula film made by a hit factory, not a serious entry into the film history books. From any standpoint, though, at this budget level, this kind of work should be unacceptable.
The whole experience could have been easier to swallow if it wasn't all just so dreadfully uninteresting. It's not campy enough to be considered "so bad it's good" and it's not exciting enough to be even a Michael Bay movie. When the Kraken finally shows up, I was more concerned with wondering whether the extra teeth inside the monster's mouth were actually there or were just a side-effect of the bad 3-D processing, which brings me to my next point...
It seems these days that anything this large and dumb can make money, at least in the first weekend- and that's the game. You can just hear the studio executives saying "let's release this in 3-D so we can rake it in" as you're watching it. Well, in the words of another big, stupid action movie (but one that knows it's a parody), big mistake. The 3-D in Clash is some of the most poorly implemented in the history of 3-D. It should actually be illegal for studios to charge extra for this kind of work. Sure, it was a conversion, and sure, it was rushed, but that's not good enough. The more studios pull these kinds of stunts with 3-D, especially last-minute rush job conversions, the entire fad will sink quicker than the Titanic. Avatar it is not.
It's simple: If you must see Clash of the Titans, see it in 2-D or be sure to grab an extra popcorn back to ralph into when the action starts. At least the trailers will look nice. Our recommendation is to actually rent the original Clash instead. At least there you've got Burgess Meredith and campy stop-motion effects to clue you in that it's a cheesefest. Okay, maybe Liam Neeson's ridiculous outfit is a dead giveaway too.