The producers of “300” return to the big screen with “Immortals,” and they really wanted audiences to know about it in the highly advertised trailers. I can’t say I blame them; “300” was a massive box-office hit, so I would use the same selling point if I were in their position.
Of course, this is done in an attempt to reel in the many fans of the groundbreaking “300.” The only downside to this idea is that these same viewers would remember that movie as they watched “Immortals,” and the comparisons would be inevitable.
However, one of the strongest elements of the plot of “300” is the fact that it was based, albeit loosely, on actual historical events. “Immortals” attempts to recant ancient Greek mythology, but the screenwriters took far too much freedom in doing so.
The film is led by Theseus, who is played by Henry Cavill. He is a strong but humble peasant who was unknowingly chosen by Zeus to lead mankind against an impending attack by evil King Hyperion. Mickey Rourke is Hyperion, who is a very apathetic and callous man who is dead set on resurrecting the Titans and sticking it to the gods once and for all.
After Hyperion forces Theseus to watch his mother die, he tells him to “witness hell.” This creates a very personal motivation for Theseus. You would think it would be easy to want to get behind this guy, but Cavill was not very convincing when he is matched up to Gerard Butler’s King Leonidas in “300.” When we were leaving the theater, one of my friends jokingly put it like this, “As I was watching ‘300,’ I wanted to know where I could enlist. I didn’t get that from Theseus.”
During certain sequences in this film, it really did feel like this movie was trying to recycle scenes of “300.” In fact, just before the big, climactic fight is about to ensue, Theseus attempts to deliver an inspiring war speech to soldiers who he isn’t even in charge of.
As he continues to flap his lips, he tells the men that “in the tunnel, their numbers will count for nothing.” Apparently, Theseus watched “300” while he was coming up with his big speech. Then, the fight scene that follows is shot from the side, which is awfully reminiscent of one of the signature scenes from its predecessor.
With all that being said, “Immortals” does have some things going for it. Since King Hyperion has chosen to basically conjure hell on earth, the gods decide to intervene and help mankind. And although they are historically inaccurate in their lopsidedness, the fights that occur between the Titans and the gods feature some of the most brutally epic CGI I have ever seen.
I would even go as far as to say that those scenes alone were far better visually than anything we saw in “300.” As I was watching them, I found myself wondering why the writers felt the need to even involve mankind in this film. They could make a whole film based on a war between the titans and the gods, and if it looked like this, I’d gladly fork over my money.
I understand that the gods are divine, and therefore their ability to fight is going to be greater. But by including these fight sequences, it really made the majority of the fights between humans look mediocre.
The visual factor alone is strong enough to allow me to recommend seeing this movie. But, the plot of this movie left just as much to be desired as the “Clash of the Titans” remake did, but at least I didn’t feel like I wasted my money by seeing “Immortals” in 3-D, unlike “Clash.”