This spring I told my advanced Latin students that there was only really one true epic story left to tell from the ancient world, the "Aeneid." So logically, that had to be the next big-budget ancient epic film.
Turns out that wasn't true.
movie poster from here.
I forgot about Theseus and the Minotaur, which is a very popular and enduring story. "Immortals" is the new feature film, done by the folks who brought you "300," that has taken that myth and run with it.
This is not apparent from the trailer, by the way, which I saw last night with stepson and beloved before "Captain America" (nice movie, nice Hayley Atwell). The trailer shows lots of yelling, lots of swords being banged on shields, lots of CGI, and one reference to a guy named Theseus.
Turns out "Immortals" is only loosely based on the classical story of the hero who goes to Crete with a bunch of Athenian youths, falls in love with princess Ariadne, kills the half-bull, half-man monster while in a maze in the basement of the royal palace, and sails home to the tragic death of his father.
No, in this one the Titan Hyperion has declared war on humankind and Theseus is the only one who can save the world. Another myth, the "Clash of the Titans" or Titanomachy is also referenced here. Which goes to show that you can do Greek myth over and over just like the Greeks did.
This is going to be big. Big big. Bigger than big. The CGI is going to be beyond amazing.
I don't know that smaller stories such as the "Aeneid" can be made in this day and age. After the destruction of the world, a tale about a hero caught by destiny who must leave the woman he loves to fight a war in a land that doesn't want him just isn't going to wash.