Percy Jackson and the Olympians was a popular series commonly read by elementary school students. Five books of wondrous adventure through the protagonist Percy Jackson, the demigod son of Poseidon. A popular young adult series from when I was in elementary school, you were almost considered an outcast if you hadn’t read them. It was the Harry Potter series of the 2000’s. Before I left elementary school, a movie had come out of the first book in the series, The Lightning Thief. Because these were the books that made me enjoy reading, I was pumped. Unfortunately, the finished product was very, eh.
Coming out in 2010, we as a society were still in the middle of Harry Potter films coming out and making a ton of money at the box office. So of course, this lighthearted children’s’ adventure had a more adult take on it. The protagonists were aged up from twelve to seventeen, which already changes the personalities of the main character a lot. Instead of being sarcastic pre-teens, the main characters are bland and brooding young adults that seem misplaced in their environment and aren’t at all amazed by their surroundings.
As far as going along with the characters, the supporting cast of mythical creatures was absolutely phenomenal. Characters such as Medusa and Persephone were played by Uma Thurman and Rosario Dawson respectively were executed flawlessly. Though their characters in the books weren’t very developed rather than complaining about how they got where they were, the actresses brought their A-game and were arguably the best parts of the disaster.
The ratings for this film are all at bout 50% on popular review websites. This is because they got about half the things right about the series. The plot moves a long much like the books did, but the filmmakers sucked the magic right out of it. One of the most iconic recurring elements of the book series is the cutthroat version of capture the flag. There’s magic stuff going on everywhere, tornadoes, water flooding, etc, and instead its just capture the flag with with swords. Not even magical swords.
The movie was a box office success and spawned a sequel, The Sea of Monsters, to similar reviews. Word quickly got around that it was just as mediocre as the first and killed the franchise. Hopefully one day it can be rebooted into something worthy of its source material.