Immortals

In ancient times, everyone lived perched on the edge of a cliff. No, seriously. In the case of the deities, I'm sure it's for dramatic effect, but even peasants live in villages carved into the face of the living rock, overlooking a steep, sheer drop down into the unforgiving ocean. Acrophobia must not have been invented yet.

In one of these villages lives Theseus, played by Henry Cavill of Stardust, and his mother Aethra, aka Anne Day-Jones from Source Code. People make fun of his mother because she isn't married. In the original myth of Theseus, his mother is a princess, so I'm guessing she didn't take any flak for being a single mother. The movie sort of implies that Zeus is Theseus' father, but the myth says his father was either Poseidon or possibly King Aegeus of Athens. Apparently they considered both of them to be Theseus' father, which is a neat trick.

But like Perseus, Theseus just wants to live his life and protect those he cares about, like his mother and Old Man, which is all the credit poor John Hurt (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) gets in this flick. This quickly becomes impossible, of course, or we wouldn't have a movie. Mickey Rourke from Iron Man 2 is King Hyperion, and he's on the warpath. He's king of the Heraklions, though I'm not sure where they're from. Heraklion is a city in Crete today, but it wasn't renamed that until 1898 and the city itself wasn't even founded until 824 AD, whereas the movie is set in 1228 BCE. These Heraklions scar their faces to look more intimidating and then cover the scars with masks. I don't get it, either. The point is, Hyperion doesn't like anybody, and his endless supply of soldiers follows him blindly. They attack Theseus' village, Kolpos -- at least I think that's what it's called, but that seems to be a generic Greek word for an ocean bay or inlet -- and much slaughter ensues.

What Hyperion really wants, though, is something called the Epirus bow. It's pretty neat, actually. You pull the string, and an arrow made of energy appears, ready to be fired. And it's also the only way to free the Titans, imprisoned by their kids, the upstart gods and goddess of Olympus. In Greek myth, Hyperion was a Titan, so that may be one reason why he wants them freed.

Theseus ends up traveling with Freida Pinto from Rise of the Planet of the Apes, who here plays Phaedra, a Sibylline Oracle who prophesies doom; a thief named Stavros, played by Stephen Dorff of Public Enemies, and a monk played by Greg Bryk of Saw 3-D. The monk doesn't talk. He didn't take a vow of silence; he just doesn't have a tongue. The movie is really very bloody in parts, though I'm sure he faced worse in Saw.

This unlikely crew blunders around and ends up neck deep in the fight against Hyperion. People are gathering for a last stand at Mount Tartarus, even though there is no such place, Tartarus being the ancient Greek name for Hell. On the other hand, there are so many other things wrong with the movie, you start forgetting about little details like that. I was mostly noticing that Mount Tartarus seemed to be next to the Hoover Dam.

There's a really big, implausible battle sequence -- well, implausible you expect, but what bothered me the most is that even I could spot huge tactical advantages that the defenders completely failed to make use of. If you want divine intervention, though, there's a lot of that. They never do satisfactorily explain why Zeus (Luke Evans from The Three Musketeers) is so interested in Theseus, or why immortals are so easy to kill, or why the Titans act like mindless killing machines instead of former deities. Bitter over their imprisonment, maybe?

The Titans all look exactly alike, and Zeus and company mostly look silly. They all wear weird headdresses that are supposed to symbolize what they're in charge of: Ares has one made of sword blades (though at first I thought he was Apollo and they were the rays of the sun) and poor Poseidon (Kellan Lutz of Twilight) has to wear two giant seashells on his head. The Sibylline Oracles have it worst, though, since they can only go outside when cleverly disguised as floor lamps. I'm not kidding.

They took out the half-man, half-bull Minotaur, which was one of my favorite parts of the Theseus myth -- well, not took out completely, but changed it around so it wasn't as much fun. They use a real ancient torture device called the Brazen Bull (though it's actually from the 500s BCE), but everything else seems so utterly unhistorical and even unmythical that I just pretended it was set in a parallel dimension.

If you don't mind unhistorical and don't know much about Greek myth, you're all set. I can only manage three out of five, and yes, I know, other people are liking it much more than that, but I can't help it. It was at least more fun than epic -- which sounds wrong, I know, but I always thought that was where 300 went most wrong, by making everything grand and huge and important instead of just human once in a while. These characters are more fallible... certainly where dress sense is concerned... and that's not such a bad thing. Mostly.

Image: 
The God of War, the God of the Sea, and the God of Shark Rabbits.

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I saw the movie, it is suck,

I saw the movie, it is suck, no real titan just stupid man in black.

U r just a hater mickey

U r just a hater mickey rourke wasa boss !

Where do I begin, you are

Where do I begin, you are wonderful as a writer, an observer of history both legend and fact and finally being facetious enough to keep me laughing throughout your article. I love myth and fact and graphical enhancement has definitely found it’s way into the minds of the masses causing the pockets of the Production Companies to continue to fill. It seems clear to me that there is a large part of humanity that does not go to see a film to get a lesson in mythical lore. They want blood and guts spilling into their popcorn and they want top see over the top costumes that pass through the point of reason and into a “WOW moment”. It does sound like the cast is quite a mix but of all the Greek Gods to look silly, it really should not be Zeus! A titan acting like mindless machines does not quite sound right either considering the simple fact that they were a race of powerful deities. Anyway, it’s your article so I will stop my raving as I too love film and history as I said before and I would have to go into the film with the mindset of an average poor soul knowing nothing of the wisdom I’ve worked hard to explore throughout my life. Sorry I did it again, I’m really done this time. I also have a film blog and it focus not on reviews thankfully as I believe I would become far more cynical than I already am. It focuses on the developmental history of actors both on and of the screen, which I find fascinating or someone as requested. I recently relocated to the Midwest and therefore my traveling for work has increased leaving me zero time to research my beloved passion at home. I have spent so much time getting everything set up in my new environment that I realized I forgot to get a service provider to allow me the resources for my travels. This will be the only way I can get the research done and maintain the blog. I have had Direct TV and customer service and price wise I felt the corporation as a whole could have worked a little harder. It was a bit shocking that Comcast limiting and not offering 100% digital programming. International channels are also limited and they were not offering HD free for life. This will not do! Now I did find that with Dish Network I could get more programming and movie channels for far less money plus a free Sling Adapter, which fits my need to bring my services with me wherever I go. I ended up changing jobs and started working for Dish Network, still traveling as I had been but armed with tools. With the new Blockbuster Movie Pass, which simply means Welcome Live Streaming and so many TV and movie options, I’m set! Now I am clear that whatever makes it easiest to work on my hobby while traveling and get great entertainment at an affordable price is what is necessary. It is important to me that there is happiness in my life and those counting on me. Life is better knowing I can keep up with something that I’m passionate about and gives me a fulfilling existence.

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