Remember that period back in 2009 when Sam Worthington was tipped to be Hollywood’s next big lead man? If ever that notion needed a final nail hammering into its coffin, it comes in the form of The Titan, a Worthington vehicle so bland and uninteresting that, the more you think about it, it’s actually the perfect fit for his talents.
The plot picks up as Earth is, as in a myriad of sci-fi movies before this one, dying. Soon it will be unable to produce enough food to sustain its population and will become completely uninhabitable. A group of shady scientists and government types propose that humanity jump ship by starting up home on a distant moon, Titan, and so work begins on developing genetically enhanced super-soldiers, with bodies capable of braving the journey and the moon’s conditions. Of course, things don’t go smoothly.
The Titan marks the directorial debut of Lennart Ruff and was written by Max Hurwitz and Arash Amel. Whilst sold as something of an action, space adventure film, it’s much closer to body horror with a plot far more intimate and introverted than the marketing materials would suggest.
It’s an accomplished looking film. The special effects can’t really be faulted. That said, the art design is generally quite uninspired. This film has nothing to offer you if you’ve ever played through an average video game with a level set in a science lab.
It’s impossible to overlook the obvious influence of Prometheus on the film. Whilst Prometheus hardly invented the concepts that it explores, The Titan can’t shake the feeling that it’s almost a Prometheus fan-film. It’s close enough to that film in terms of thematics, concepts and even much of its look (the Engineers show up in all but name once the super-soldiers begin to change their physical appearance), that it seems almost impossible that they weren’t consciously using it as a jumping off point.
The acting throughout the film is similarly bland. Sam Worthington certainly doesn’t give a bad performance, but there’s nothing about what he does here that you can really grab onto. The cast are all functional and little more, despite the best efforts of Agyness Deyn and Taylor Schilling to bring something to their roles.
The Titan’s premise isn’t particularly new or noteworthy, but it’s good enough that more capable hands might have turned it into something interesting, if not emotional or scary or meaningful or thrilling - hell, I’d settle for feeling anything. Having this film provoke any sort of emotion at all would be a step-up because, in its current form, it’s probably best described as ‘nothingy’. It’s never actively bad, but there’s nothing about it to draw you in or ever make your care.
THE TITAN / CERT: TBC / DIRECTOR: LENNART RUFF / SCREENPLAY: MAX HURWITZ / STARRING: SAM WORTHINGTON, TAYLOR SCHILLING, TOM WILKINSON, AGYNESS DEYN / RELEASE DATE: TBC