Jason and the Argonauts (1963)

Jason and the Argonauts Movie Review………………………………………………………………..

Jason and the Argonauts Movie Review

Jason and the Argonauts is a 1963 epic fantasy film directed by Don Chaffey and starring Todd Armstrong and having the effects from Ray Harryhausen. It is such a fun, really good flick.

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The gods are best served by those who need their help the least

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Jason and the Argonauts Movie Review………………………………………………………………..

The story itself is pretty good and I really liked that framing device with the Olympus. I really enjoyed that the gods were present so much in the movie and that it ended with them as well. It was well pulled off in terms of the effects and it was satisfying in terms of storytelling. I enjoyed everything about this story, especially its use of the various creatures and I will go in depth about each of them later on.

I loved that intriguing first act, so well done. But I have to say that the idea that Jason could get the help form the gods because he didn’t ask it as much and wasn’t a believer is a very flawed and odd idea, mainly because it is disrespectful towards actual religious people. The sequences on Olympus were awesome as well as those adventurous ones on the ship. I loved how the movie was wonderfully adventurous and it thoroughly succeeds as a fantasy film while also being fascinating in its Greek mythology elements which I love and that is the major reason why I enjoyed the movie so much.

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Jason and the Argonauts Movie Review………………………………………………………………..

Jason and the Argonauts has forgettable human characters which is the main reason why the film is so flawed. Jason in particular is very typical and at times even annoying. Medea was solid and Hylas and Hercules were good, but most of these people are never memorable or well developed, though they admittedly work well as a team.

But the gods were great. I loved Hera and her part in the story was so fascinating, but Zeus was even better and the two were so great together and I loved some of his lines. The Golden Fleece was well utilized in the storyline and I also really liked Triton as that sequence was so memorable, albeit the weakest in terms of the effects. Talos is amazing and in fact, he might be my favorite creation here as he was so well depicted with groundbreaking effects. The Harpies were absolutely fantastic and they looked so menacing, Hydra is phenomenal and the skeletal warriors were memorable and iconic of course, but their sequence wasn’t the longest and it should have come earlier in the plot.

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Jason and the Argonauts Movie Review………………………………………………………………..

Ray Harryhausen really did a tremendous job with the stop-motion animation and special effects. The creatures all look phenomenal not only in design, but also in execution. And although it isn’t fantastic nowadays, it was absolutely amazing for its time and I would say that time was kind to it for the most part. Truly a groundbreaking picture in terms of its visuals.

But the acting in Jason and the Argonauts is so weak and some of the actors were quite mediocre. And I just never found any of the human characters particularly appealing. That was the biggest problem that prevented the movie from ever becoming great. It is very good, but far from great.

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Jason and the Argonauts Movie Review………………………………………………………………..

It is well paced and is riveting throughout the whole of its running time. The dialogue is solid, the mythology is so well utilized and the set design, locations and cinematography are all splendid. The tone is pleasantly adventurous and the score, although too loud at times, is mostly very good and tonally fitting for its period. Overall, I really liked this movie and it was so entertaining to watch and despite its obvious flaws, it is a remarkable classic fantasy feature.

Jason and the Argonauts has unappealing, not great human characters and weaker acting, but everything else is great with absolutely superb special effects work from Ray Harryhausen as the movie is truly groundbreaking visually as all of the creatures look great. The mythology is also wonderfully utilized, the film always looks good, it is consistently riveting and exciting to watch while also being adventurous and intriguing at times and it thoroughly succeeds as a fantasy flick.

My Rating – 4

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Posted in 1960s, 1963, Epic, Fantasy, FILM DECADES, MOVIE REVIEWS and tagged , , , , .

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