Immortals – In Theatres Now
by Diane Ligman
Immortals is the latest film by Tarsem Singh, and stars Henry Cavill (our new Superman), and the amazing Mickey Rourke. Cavill plays Theseus, whose mother was raped by villagers and shunned by her fellow villagers, and who is a superb fighter. He is being groomed by Zeus (portrayed in his godly appearance by Luke Evans, and in mortal disguise by John Hurt) to help lead Greece to defeat the God-defying, and insanely brutal, King Hyperion (Rourke).
Immortals is a gruesome movie so how the fighting sequences are handled is important and overall, the sequences are entertaining. Some are a bit repetitive but for the most part the action is clear, makes good use of the 3D and not overdoing the slow-motion.
Shot in a similar manner to 300 , yet post-converted to 3D like another swords and sandals film, Clash of the Titans, they managed to not loose the coloring, have floating head syndrome or induce headaches. This is quite an improvement for post-conversion. This can partially be credited to the director and cinematographer who knew and planned accordingly for the conversion. After seeing several movies this summer which, while shot in 3D, wasted it because they didn’t properly account for lighting issues, it was nice to see this aspect being addressed.
Mickey Rourke is fun. There is no other word for it. His evilness is sickening. There are things he orders to be done, sometimes just sitting there calmly while it happens or worse yet, does himself, that are stomach turning. And yet you buy completely that he is that guy. He is chewing the scenery and enjoying every single moment of it and making us enjoy it too.
The entire design for this production was beautifully done, and marks of genius, from the fact that the gods are all young, to the coloring, the costumes, and the set design,. I want these creative people touching my other action movies, like Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Three Musketeers, or even the long stale romantic comedy realm. They could bring new life to what has become an almost cookie cutter look in these movies.
Immortals is a gruesome movie so how the fighting sequences are handled is important – but it shouldn’t sacrifice plot, character development, dialogue, for the sake of it. The plot is not as confusing as murmurs from other critics I have heard would make you believe – the people in the audience I saw it with followed it pretty well. The problem is that aside from some actors who did some extreme heavy lifting (Stephen Dorff and Luke Evans to name two), to give their characters something for the audience to grasp, there was nothing there to connect to. It became a very pretty, bloody pop-up book to look at.
The dialogue was cheesy. There was laughing when the moments were meant to be heartfelt or emotional. The dialogue during the sex scene, which was already bizarre enough, actually broke it. This is sad since the actors involved are not bad looking people to watch.
They had a lot of fun young talent playing the gods (Kellan Lutz from Twilight, Daniel Sharman from The Nine Lives of Chloe King and Isabel Lucas from the upcoming Red Dawn), so it would have been nice to see them more. It would have been nice to also know who each was supposed to be more easily besides Athena, who, I might be wrong, but as far as I caught was the only one referred to by name besides Zeus.
If you like accuracy to Greek mythology in your movies lets just say there are some discrepancies, so Immortals is probably not your thing. If you like violence and don’t care about all the other parts of a movie, like plot, character development, etc, then this is for you. It is pretty, but hollow, even though some actors really do try. If you want to see it, you might as well wait for a matinee and it is worth the 3D. But if you can’t handle brutal violence, avoid this movie. This is not appropriate for children, not even tweens, possibly even young teens. Immortals is mindless fun, but it heavy on the gore. Honestly, if you are not really into quest movies and you have a really good HDTV, you can wait until Immortals comes out on DVD or Blu-Ray.