Director Jonathan Liebesman (Battle: Los Angeles) takes over directing duties from Louis Leterrier to film a worthy sequel to the horrible Clash of the Titans. Liebesman’s Wrath of the Titans is every bit a step in the right direction, thankfully. He loads the film with bigger and more expensive set pieces, plus tons of action-heavy battles and lots of Titans and creatures. Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes get meatier roles and Sam Worthington continues to try and show the world he can act. What more can you ask for? Wrath of the Titans is big, dumb, but mostly fun and pretty to look at.
Perseus (Sam Worthington) has been summoned by his father Zeus (Liam Neeson) yet again. This time he must protect the world from even bigger Titans, which are soon to be released on the world by Hades (Ralph Fiennes) and Ares (Édgar Ramírez). The battle to keep the Gods at bay is amplified and more dangerous than ever as Perseus must form an alliance with Poseidon’s (Danny Huston) son to journey to dark underworld known as Tartarus.
Wrath of the Titans is the apology letter we’ve all been waiting for since Warner Bros. unleashed the dreadful Clash of the Titans on us a few years back. This time around they promised more action, more 3D and more of what really worked in the first film, which was the Liam Neeson/Ralph Fiennes dynamic. Wrath delivers on all of those promises and in doing so it becomes a grand spectacle of a film, with lots of greatly rendered effects and even more big-budget Hollywood action that we’ve been craving.
The story might not benefit from any of these expensive side attractions, but it never gets on your nerves, which is more than I can say for Clash. This time around Sam Worthington‘s Perseus is more aware of his surroundings and he bickers less, but looks down at himself more. He still clearly doesn’t think he’s God material, or mortal material for that matter, which brings us to several conflicts that quickly get resolved and never hold down the film.
Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes return as Zeus and Hades, but this time around spending more screen time kicking ass, which is something I can’t argue with. Just their increased presence alone boosts the film’s overall quality, because we’re finally able to witness talented acting and massive special effects.
Worthington is no Neeson or Fiennes and Liebesman seems to understand that by infusing Neeson and Fiennes more with the central plot and keeping Worthington’s missions basic and accessible.
Liebesman does employ the use of the over-the-shoulder camera, which gets slightly discomforting, but never to the level of Battle: L.A., which was barely watchable on a full stomach. Liebesman keeps the shaky and wild shots to a minimum, bringing the wide shots of the scenery and landscape to full form. There’s something about a giant lava monster spewing out little lava monsters while wreaking havoc on everyone that makes for a thrilling and exciting experience.
Wrath of the Titans isn’t without its warts though. There’s questionable dialogue and some halting scenes that slow the film down and make you impatient, but they’re short and almost always followed with lots of action to keep you engaged.
Big summer popcorn entertainment is getting harder and harder to come by, but Warner Bros. delivers the goods with Wrath of the Titans. The apology is well-received and I actually wouldn’t mind if they went ahead on a third entry in the series.
Warner Bros. brings the film to Blu-Ray with an emitting 1080p video transfer that lets out every single grain of dirt and every bright flame with ultra-sharpness and clarity. This is another near spotless transfer from the studio that’ll impress you with its deep colors and vibrancy. Most of the transfer is covered with smoke, sand or bloodshed, but it looks magnificent.
The 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track is as active as lighting and as loud as thunder. There’s an incredible amount of rear speaker activity that keeps you glued to your constantly shaking chair as the action unfolds in front of your eyes. Dialogue isn’t affected by the blaring track, so don’t worry about having to turn the film up and down repetitively. I couldn’t ask for a more harmonized track.
Here’s a list of special features included in the combo pack:
- Maximum Movie Mode (HD): Warner Bros. trademark feature that allows you to extensively explore the film while watching it. The mode is split up into two modes, titled Path of Gods and Path of Men. Both paths lead you down a detailed journey that allows you to view production designs on the creatures, locations and epic battles. Additionally, you can access all of the Maximum Movie Mode Focus Point featurettes individually through the main menu.
- Deleted Scenes (HD): Three deleted scenes that are unfinished and rightfully withheld from the final cut of the film.
- DVD Copy
- UltraViolet Digital Copy
Wrath of the Titans isn’t going to stimulate your brain or have you praising the script and its characters, but it will have your eyes glued to the screen, witnessing the impressive action unfold that tops Clash in every single way. Wrath is bigger, darker and better than Clash, which is all that we can ask for at this point. Those of you that desperately need an action fix on the biggest level will want to pick up Wrath of the Titans on Blu-Ray, because its enhanced clarity and ground-shaking sound will impress.
The Blu-Ray is another new release winner from Warner Bros. and it deserves to be in every action junkie’s collection. The special features outside of the Maximum Movie Mode are bare, but the mode itself offers up plenty of detailed behind-the-scenes look at the making of the film and its creatures/effects/sets. The only downside to this particular combo pack is that it only contains the film in 2D. I’d assume the 3D presentation is the way to go if your system supports it, but settling for the 2D combo pack shouldn’t be a problem.
This review is based on a copy of the Blu-Ray that we received for reviewing purposes.