Brandon T. Jackson
My biggest beef with LIGHTING THIEF if the story, now bare with me here, we have a Demigod who has no idea he’s a Demigod. Suddenly there’s a war going on between Gods with Hades aspiring to take over Olympus. Percy’s sent on a quest to the Underworld but to get there he needs to first defeat Medusa...any of this sound familiar? Well it should as most of what goes on in this film took place earlier this summer in CLASH OF THE TITANS. Okay, so there are more than a few differences between the two films but there are far too many similarities to ignore. I’m not going to play the “which came first” game but this story serves up a painful kick in the nuts to the God of originality.
Now for all its flaws, one place this film does deliver the goods is with the effects. Hades looked totally badass in his fire demon form, Percy’s water powers were cool and even Zeus’s lightning bolt seemed pretty real. The CGI Hellhounds and Minotaur looked cheap as hell but the Hydra wasn’t too bad. Granted, no matter how real or fake any of these monsters appeared, there was absolutely no sense of danger whatsoever. The characters just blew through each step of the film with nonchalance and ease, there were no real obstacles to overcome, I mean hell, Percy all of a sudden becomes this seasoned warrior after getting his ass kicked by a chick and then crawling to the water where he discovers his “powers”. I get that he’s the son of Poseidon and all, but just because he can control water doesn’t mean he should automatically know how to fight with a sword.
PERCY JACKSON & THE OLYMPIANS: THE LIGHTNING THEIF is watchable but hardly memorable. There were some great cameos in here from Uma Thurman and Rosario Dawson both of whom are still looking sexy, especially Dawson. Sean Bean is one of my favourite actors be he’s merely an afterthought despite playing the mighty Zeus. There was some TROPIC THUNDER love by way of Brandon T. Jackson and Steve Coogan and even Peirce Bronson came out of hiding and scored a pay check (I also loved SUPERNATURAL’s Jake Abel showing up). The cast wasn’t the problem, for me the film just felt hollow and bland, just another excuse to take a series of books and turn them into gold. What’s worse on that front (from what I hear) is that they didn’t do a very good job of representing the book either.
Discover Your Powers Quiz: Ouch, this game might entice young kids but there really isn’t much to it and it definitely lacks in the excitement category.
The Book Comes to Life: Author Rick Riordan (along with most of the younger cast) shout out some mad love for the source material the film was based upon. Like most people (including the cast) I’d never heard of these books.
Previews: There’s a theatrical trailer, a Blu-ray commercial, a Digital Copy commercial along with a slew of other trailers.