Starring Henry Cavill, Mickey Rourke, Freida Pinto, Stephen Dorff and Kellan Lutz. Directed by Tarsem Singh. 110 minutes. 18A
Before Immortals started, my boyfriend asked me what I thought the film would be out of 10. “Six,” I said, “But I’m hoping it’s an eight.” When I think about it, that’s a strange answer. Why would I see a movie I think will be a six? I guess I thought it had the potential to be as brazen as 300, as visually stunning as The Cell and as epic as the battle in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Tower. But it was none of those. How not-so-surprising.
Immortals actually tells the story of mortals in Olympus. When Hyperion’s (Mickey Rourke) prayers to the Gods to cure his family from sickness go unanswered, he seeks to unleash the Titans (don’t they all?) to destroy the Gods. He captures oracle Phaedra (Frida Pinto) along the way to help him. Meanwhile, he also wages war on Olympus and in doing so, (without spoiling it) also warrants revenge from Theseus, a young peasant man.
While the story could have been a good one, it isn’t executed compellingly. Sure, we get that everyone is mad and seeking revenge but we keep losing sight of the emotions behind it. Actually, the only emotion ever present in the film is anger. Though honestly, I didn’t see this film for the story or the emotion; I saw it for its potential epicness.
Maybe the problem is that nothing will ever be as brazen as 300 or as ruthlessly noble as The Two Towers. It seems that this film was sold on what’s been done before. You know, it’s like this movie, or like that movie, maybe a more well-done comparison to Clash of the Titans or on visual parallel with Troy. In the end, it’s not strong enough to stand on its own. It’s not original enough.
Perhaps one of the more interesting aspects of the film is its 3D conversion. Straight up, I generally don’t like 3D. On top of that, 3D conversion post-filming is just fake 3D to me, not to mention it feels like a purely money-making ploy (though what is cinema-going anyway). That being said, there was something interesting about this film’s use of 3D. It wasn’t jarringly ugly, though it was more than evident. It added a surreal quality, which seemed to fit the mythological story and the overall dark and dramatic visuals. It surprisingly worked.
Back to the reason I saw this film, it was more just a gamble on potential. This could have been an amazing epic battle film I’d remember for years to come. If you don’t give them a chance, you’ll never know if you missed out on a good one. And sometimes even if it doesn’t blow you away, it’s still not that bad. B-