Add this to the long list of sequels that nobody wanted, but got made anyway. I mean, I guess somebody wanted it, or it wouldn’t have been made. Despite being an awful movie (and having a ridiculously long name), Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief was apparently profitable enough to warrant a sequel – even if three years later it’s all but been forgotten by audiences.
Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman), half mortal son of Poseidon, is still at Camp Half-Blood where he, and others like him, train and live in the safe confines of the camp. He’s not so much the loser he once was, having saved Olympus and all, but he’s not the most popular kid either and he’s having his doubts about whether he really is hero material or if his quest was just good luck. When the safety of the whole camp (which soon turns out to be the least of their worries) is in jeopardy, he takes the chance to find out.
Embarking on a journey to bring back the legendary Golden Fleece, Percy is joined by his faithful companion Grover, the satyr (Brandon T. Jackson), Annabeth, daughter of Athena, and Tyson (Douglas Smith), Percy’s newly discovered cyclops half brother. Located in the middle of The Sea of Monsters, the Bermuda Triangle, the Fleece is not going to be easy to retrieve. Especially when Luke (Jake Abel), son of Hermes (Nathan Fillion) is back with a plan more evil than anyone can imagine. Dun dun dun.
Stanley Tucci was also convinced to come aboard for this one as an amusing representation of Dionysus – who I believe was in the first one, but played by someone nobody had heard of. It’s okay, they replaced Pierce Brosnan with Anthony Head as Chiron and I don’t think anyone really noticed.
I hated the first Percy Jackson film for so many reasons. It rushes the plot, it changes things from the book that should have been kept while keeping things that should have been changed, there is no character development, the characters are aged up to ridiculous degrees, and it is a cheap Harry Potter knockoff in so many ways.
This one is at least an improvement on that. The plot is not pushed through at hurricane speeds, but for a movie titled “Sea of Monsters,” they spend surprisingly little time at sea, where they only encounter one monster. I didn’t read the second book, so I can’t comment on the faithfulness of the adaptation. I actually sort of almost felt like I cared about some of the characters a little and their ages didn’t seem to be so bothersome for whatever reason. Maybe better makeup. And it was a slightly more expensive knockoff of Harry Potter.
Numerous franchises have tried and failed to fill the young adult fantasy void left by Harry Potter. Just the fact that Percy Jackson has gotten two films means that is has been more successful than some others, though it surely has more to do with a built in fanbase than quality productions. Sea of Monsters takes good actors and gives them little to work with. The result is slightly embarrassing as they charge through stale dialogue and recycle plot points with as much gusto as they can manage given the circumstances.
I’ve seen worse, and if you crave teen fantasy this might be able to satiate your appetite temporarily until something worth your time comes along.
Mrs. Hamster Says:
“It’s hard to make a good movie out of bad source material, but at least it’s not as bad as the first one.”
My Rating: Two out of Five Hats
Percy Jackson: The Sea of Monsters sails into 2,800 theaters August 7 in 2D and 3D.