Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief (2010)


My wife started reading these books and really got into them. I read the first and was surprised how good it was. It had a fun mix of Greek mythology, humor and adventure. I figured you could make a really entertaining movie out of this. But I also feared that it could go horribly wrong. Let’s see what happened.


Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman) just found out he’s the son of the sea god Poseidon (Kevin McKidd). Turns out that all the Greek gods and monsters are real and still hanging out in our times. But things aren’t going so well for the Olympians. The master lightning bolt of Zeus (Sean Bean) was stolen and he is certain that Percy is the culprit. Now Percy has to team up with Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario) daughter of Athena and Grover (Brandon T. Jackson) a satyr to find out who really is “The Lightning Thief’.

Good Points

  • The cast seems game to have some fun – especially Uma Thurman
  • A couple key moments from the book are well executed
  • Some cool visual effects for the mythological creatures

Bad Points

  • The script is missing a lot of the humor from the book
  • Much of the magic and wonder is missing from the movie
  • Never pulls the viewer in


What a missed opportunity this was. Even if I’d never read the books I’d wonder what happened here. The mythological elements are toned down, the humor is bland and almost all the character and quirkiness from the books is missing. The result is a humdrum adventure that has some pretty moments but is lacking anything to draw you in. The cast does a good job, with Joe Pantoliano and Uma Thurman stealing their scenes with relish. But the script is so limp its all for naught. Stick with the books.

Scores (out of 5)

Visual: 4

Sound: 4

Acting: 3

Music: 3

Script: 2

Direction: 2

Entertainment: 2

Total: 2

Curious about a full review, send me an email and I'll make additional thoughts to this review.

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