I remember watching the original film for my fifth-grade assignment. We were learning about Greek Myths and Perseus in particular. We had to take as many notes and absorb as many details as possible, and we used those notes for a quiz. My classmate looked at me in disappointment noticing my notes were minimal. I thought it was adequate in my defense. I wish I had heeded her warning.
I am glad I got to watch it again to appreciate the talented Harry Hamlin. His voice conveys that Ben Hur’s valor or Shakespeare-esque demeanor and Ray Harryhausen’s genius (R.I.P). This guy has made a mark on Hollywood. I was pumped when the trailer dropped for this modern retelling. The heavy metal music and getting Ralph Fiennes, Liam Neeson, and the director shed a better light on the Hulk in 2008 (Louis Letterier).
Sam Worthington (Avatar, Hacksaw Ridge, Terminator Salvation, Man on a Ledge) burst onto the scene in 2009. Though Terminator was a great film in my eyes but not received well financially and critically, Worthington had the chance to jump into James Cameron’s world once again. He plays Perseus with such power and infection. Perseus is quite a Greek hero.
There are moments in one’s life where you decide what kind of person you want to be when you grow up. Everyone is searching for their place in the world. Who they are and who they are meant to be. In the case of Perseus, his identity will be challenged. He is a demigod, half-god, and half-man. His birth mother died moments after giving birth, and his father is Zeus, the god of thunder. The origins of this are very tragic indeed, but a loving family adopts Perseus, even though his family history seems to haunt him. He is unaware of it and will be thrust into the middle of a war between man and the gods, which is at a breaking point.
Watching this movie is truly cinematic. As the viewer, you accompany Perseus as he searches for self-discovery and courage. He is who he is because of his family history and is told that he must either join his powerful father or embrace his human side. He wants no part in it. Demigods make his skin crawl, and knowing what he knows, I don’t blame him. After surviving near-death from giant scorpions, grotesque fortune-telling witches, a vogue-magazine reject called Medusa, and a power-crazed god named Hades. He is called to be brave and courageous and embrace that you are not defined by who your parents are but how you want to define yourself by the choices you make. The traveling band of heroes from Argos and the beautiful exiled god Io and the majestic Pegasus help him save a doomed city and a caring princess.
I love the music so much. You get the action, mind-blowing visuals, peril, sadness, and hope from this magnificent score by Ramin Djawadi. There is a great alternate ending, but it negates the purpose of the journey. It is truly one of 2010’s popcorn flick. So many compelling characters mixed with some Greek mythology and an epic quest. I don’t know much about the original myth, but it best pays homage to the original. I love films with an incredible journey from struggle to victory.