Saturday Movie Review – “Clash of the Titans”

Harryhausen’s swan song is one of the first movies I saw in theatres. Too bad it didn’t live up to the memory. (Of course, I was three years old at the time…)

Cast, Crew, and Other Info

Harry Hamill as Perseus

Judi Bowker as Andromeda

Laurence Olivier as Zeus

Burgess Meredith as Ammon

Maggie Smith as Thetis

Ursula Andress as Aphrodite

Neil McCarthy as Calibos

Written by Beverley Cross

Directed by Desmond Davis

Complete information is available from the IMDB.

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Past movie reviews can be found here.


A version of the Perseus myth reaches the silver screen. Perseus must face Charon, Medusa, and the Kraken in order to save the woman he has loved ever since he snuck into her room and gawked at her while she slept.

High Point

Solving the riddle. It’s about the only thing our hero did without immense help from the gods.

Low Point

The sometimes painful bluescreening. The only worse effect was the silhouetted gull in the credits, but that was only for a time at the beginning, and not strung throughout the film.

The Scores

The originality suffers a bit, as it is an adaptation, but it’s not a particularly accurate one. (Perseus generally obtained Medusa’s head for other reasons, and Pegasus was born from the blood instead of scorpions.) Ammon, traditionally, was far less human. I give it 4 out of 6.

The effects have the best stop motion I’ve seen, though the process is still somewhat jerky and mechanical. (Still, it was the best option before animatronics hit.) It’s also got some bad blue screens and a horrible fake gull in the opening. I give it 4 out of 6.

The story is as simplistic and predictable as the source material. The motives are trite and immature, both for mortals and the gods. (I must admit, though, that the world would make a lot more sense if it were ruled by gods this petty and horny.) I give it 3 out of 6.

The acting was fairly bland, with no serious demands on any of the cast. There are very good actors in the cast, but I only know that because of their other credits. They didn’t have a lot to work with. I give it 3 out of 6.

The emotional response isn’t too bad. This is a somewhat fun movie, if you’re not looking for intellectual entertainment. I give it 4 out of 6.

The production had a lot of location shooting, with boring lighting everywhere but Medusa’s lair. I give it 3 out of 6.

Overall, it’s a decent movie, but not a great one. I give it 3 out of 6.

In total, Clash of the Titans receives 24 out of 42.

3 replies on “Saturday Movie Review – “Clash of the Titans””

  1. Trash of the Titans
    As we used to call it. It’s quite a bit of fluff. We sometimes imagined Burgess Meredith acting more like his character in Rocky and how that would’ve changed a lot of things. It could have also done without that R2D2 ripoff Boobo the owl.

  2. Forget the acting
    The high point of this film was the miniature effects.

    Medusa is one of Harryhausen’s best.

    • Re: Forget the acting
      I remember seeing his Golden Voyages of Sinbad as a kid and rather liking it; I wonder if I’d remember this one better if I’d seen it under similar circumstances, instead of on television as a young adult. As you say, great miniature work.

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