Yes, this is an incredibly kitsch adventure from 1981, but that doesn’t make it any less enjoyable. It’s based on the Greek myth of god Zeus (Olivier), who has a human son, Perseus (Hamlin, more wooden than a dining table and chairs). Perseus has fallen in love with Andromeda (Judi Bowker), but there’s a curse, an offended goddess Thetis (Maggie Smith) and many trials and tribulations to deal with before he can cast aside his sword, sandals and toga and settle down with her.
It’s daft stuff that is especially loved by little boys as Perseus battles the evil Medusa (with her head of snakes), captures winged horse Pegasus and faces the Kraken monster, all depicted using stop-motion special effects by Ray Harryhausen. They are creaky in terms of 21st-century computer-generated wizardry, and the story takes some liberties with Greek mythology (a mechanical owl who guides Perseus was made up just for the film), but it’s cracking stuff, and adults can enjoy spotting the who’s who of British actors (Olivier, Smith, Claire Bloom, Sian Phillips, Tim Piggott-Smith) who play the legendary characters with tongues firmly planted in cheeks.
Is Clash Of The Titans (1981) suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
Medusa, with her head of snakes, is quite disturbing.
The Kraken monster may scare younger viewers.
Parents of young children should also note there are battle sequences in which heads, limbs and other body parts are lopped off.