Perseus and the Kraken

clash of titans poster

Perseus and the Kraken

For this post, I was going to tell the story of Perseus, but since it made me remember the film adaptation I like the most, I’m going to talk about that movie: Clash of the Titans.

The film is from 1981. Desmond Davis was its director, with a budget of 15 million dollars.

For the stop motion animated sequences, they hired Ray Harryhausen, who began the work in 1979: He designed 244 different animated shots in 202 sets. This film was his last work.

Laurence Rosenthal composed the instrumental music.

The story shows us the idea that the ancient Greeks had of how the gods used to manipulate the world.

clash of titans Meduse
clash of titans Meduse


The film was a box office success. They planned a sequel where the protagonist was going to be Aeneas, after the Trojan War. Filming was planned for 1984, but was never done. We had to wait until 2010 for the remake which, in my opinion, although correct, is not as good as the original. A sequel called Wrath of the Titans was made for this movie, which I haven’t seen yet.

Before we continue, spoiler alert: If you’re thinking about watching the movie, you should stop reading now.

The plot

It all begins when King Acrisius of Argos locks up his daughter, Danae (Vida Taylor) to prevent the fulfillment of a prophecy that said he would die if she had a son. I made another post about this part of the story that you can read here.

Anyway, Zeus (Laurence Olivier) slips in and have sex with her. Acrisius throws her into the sea along with her baby, Perseus, in a chest, hoping they will die.

But Zeus kills Acrisius and orders Poseidon (Jack Gwillim) to unleash the monster known as the Kraken, to destroy Argos. Meanwhile, Danae and Perseus arrive at the shores of the island of Sefiros.

clash of titans dog
clash of titans dog

The Villain

We are then introduced to Calibus (Neil McCarthy), son of the goddess Thetis (Maggie Smith). Calibus was a handsome man, who was destined to marry Princess Andromeda (Judi Bowker), daughter of Queen Cassiopeia (Siân Phillips). With this, Calibus would inherit the city of Joppa.

But Calibus turns out to be cruel and destructive and, when he hunts the winged horses of Zeus, of which, only Pegasus survives, the king of the gods punishes him: he turns him into a satyr and condemns him to live in the swamps.

So Thetis decides that if her son can’t have Andromeda, no one will. When Perseus arrives at Jopa, he learns that Andromeda has (supposedly) imposed a test on the men who want to marry her: They must solve a riddle that is different every day and, for those who fail, death at the stake.



But Perseus has the gifts of the gods: the sword of Aphrodite, a shield with a mirror and the helmet of Hades, which allows him to become invisible. Also, he capture Pegasus. With all these resources, Perseus makes a plan to spy on Andromeda and discover the solution to her riddles.

Thus, Perseus discovers that every night, a giant bird carries a cage to Andromeda’s room. The spirit of the princess separates from her body and gets in the cage. The bird then takes the cage to the swamp, so Calibus can show her a new riddle and its solution. This time the answer to the riddle is Calibus’s gold ring, which has 2 pearls.

When Perseus tries to leave, they discover him, he has a fight with Calibus and manages to amputate his hand, but loses his helmet. The next day, he presents himself as just another competitor, but answers the riddle by throwing the satyr’s hand (which is wearing the ring) at the princess’s feet. It was the correct answer.

The wedding

Perseus is about to marry Andromeda, but in the middle of the ceremony, the queen has no better idea than to say that her daughter is even more beautiful than the goddess Tethys. This is the excuse that Calibus’s mother was waiting for, to take revenge. As soon as the queen utters these words, the head of the statue of Thetis breaks off, falls to the ground and comes to life.

As punishment for offending her, Thetis demands that Andromeda has to be sacrificed (while still virgin) to the Kraken in 30 days. If they refuse, the Kraken will destroy Jopa.

clash of titans kraken
clash of titans kraken

The journey

Perseus consults with a wise man on how to destroy the Kraken and discovers that perhaps the Stygian witches know the answer. Meanwhile, Calibus and his men capture Pegasus and Zeus asks Athena to give his owl to Perseus, in exchange for the helmet he lost. In order not to separate from her pet, Athena asks Hephaestus to build a mechanical owl. This owl becomes the comic relief of the movie.

Perseus and his friends go on a journey to meet the witches. These witches are blind and have a single, gem-shaped eye, which they use in turn. At first they refuse to help Perseus and possibly, plan to eat him. But with the help of the owl, Perseus steals their eye and refuses to return it if they don’t speak.

So Perseus learns that only Medusa’s gaze can stop the Kraken. So Perseus must deal with the ferryman Charon, to take him across the river Styx, to the island of the dead, where Meduse dwells.

clash of titans wiches
clash of titans wiches

The Island

Once there, they must fight a two-headed dog named Diosquilo. They then go into the ruins where Medusa lives. One of them is killed by Medusa’s arrow and another ends up turned to stone.

But Perseus uses the mirror on his shield to avoid looking directly at her and manages to cut off her head. Medusa’s body spills acidic blood that destroys the shield, but Perseus manages to place her head in a bag.

During the trip back, while they sleep in a camp in the middle of nowhere, Calibus sneaks in and punctures the bag where the head is. Drops of blood fall from the head and turn into giant scorpions.

clash of titans scorpions
clash of titans scorpions

The return

The group fights against Calibus and the scorpions, managing to defeat them all and kill Calibus, but only Perseus survives. Meanwhile, the owl finds Pegasus and frees it, so it can join Perseus again.

Now, mounted on Pegasus and armed with the head of Medusa, Perseus rushes to Jopa, to try to save Andromeda from the Kraken. Will our hero manage to save the city and have sex? You’ll have to watch it to find out.

Here the trailer:


My comic book, “My First Job” is now available in my e-shop:

Also available on the following platforms:

Leave a Reply