Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief
Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, also known as Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief, is a 2010 action fantasy film directed by Chris Columbus. The film is the first installment in the Percy Jackson film series and is based on the 2005 novel The Lightning Thief, the first novel in the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series by Rick Riordan. It stars Logan Lerman as Percy Jackson alongside an ensemble cast that includes Brandon T. Jackson, Alexandra Daddario, Jake Abel, Rosario Dawson, Steve Coogan, Uma Thurman, Catherine Keener, Joe Pantoliano, Kevin McKidd, Sean Bean, Dylan Neal and Pierce Brosnan. The movie was released to theaters on February 12, 2010 in the United States by 20th Century Fox.
The film cost $95 million to make. It received mixed reviews from critics and a largely negative response from fans, with criticism for the unfaithfulness of its source material and its script, but praise for Lerman's performance and the action sequences. Despite the response, the film grossed $226.4 million worldwide. The film was released on June 29, 2010 on DVD and Blu-ray. A video game based on the film developed by Activision was released for Nintendo DS on February 11, 2010. A sequel, Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, was released on August 7, 2013.
- The acting is beyond terrible.
- Cringe worthy attempts at humour. For example, in one scene Grover says to Percy: "It's high school, without the musical."
- Extremely poor grasp of the original source material. For example, Luke is the villain in this movie, but in the book, Ares was the evil mastermind.
- Speaking of poor grasp of the original source material, the quest in the book was scrapped. In the film, the quest was to find 3 pearls in order to escape the Underworld. The quest was not to find three pearls!
- Poorly-written dialogue that sounds like they were written by a four-year old.
- Many characters were missing, such as Clarisse (although she did appear in the sequel).
- Percy, Grover and Annabeth are supposed to be 12 years old, but in here, they look more like college students.
- Speaking of Annabeth, she doesn't look anything like how the book depicted her.
- In the book, Poseidon was a carefree guy, but in the film he's turned into an ancient old guy
- Demigods are not allowed to see their god parent, but in the book you are allowed to see your god parent!
- Product placement for Call of Duty and the PS3.
- In the scene where Percy's mother is seemingly killed by the Minotaur, Percy does not show any emotion.
- Poseidon reminds Zeus that Percy is unaware of their true identities. So, how does Zeus know that Percy was the one who stole his lightning, and what evidence or proof does he have?
- Steve Coogan was pretty awesome as Hades.
- Decent soundtrack.
- The special effects are amazing.
- The action scenes are passable.
- The clever use of the Lotus Eaters
- Seeing Percy's stepdad getting turned to stone is very satisfying to watch.
The movie received mixed reviews from critics and it currently has a 5.9/10 rating on IMDb. It holds a 49% approval rating on review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, based on 142 collected reviews, with an average score of 5.3/10. The site's consensus reads: "Though it may seem like just another Harry Potter knockoff, Percy Jackson benefits from a strong supporting cast, a speedy plot, and plenty of fun with Greek mythology." It also holds a Metacritic score of 47 out of 100, based on 31 sampled reviews, indicating "mixed to average reviews." Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times described the film as "standard Hollywood product... unadventurous and uninteresting". The reviewer for The Washington Post thought "the movie suffers by taking itself a little too seriously. It's not just that it's a lot less funny than the book. It's also a lot less fun". On BBC Radio 5, Mark Kermode criticized the similarity of the film to director Chris Columbus's Harry Potter films, likening it to a Harry Potter parody book and dubbing it Benjamin Sniddlegrass and the Cauldron of Penguins. This comment later sparked a satirical fan creation with precisely that title, narrated by Stephen Fry.
The film was universally panned by fans of the series, including the author, Rick Riordan, and is considered by many to be one of the worst film adaptations ever made.
The author, Rick Riordan, has publicly criticized the final script of the movie on his personal blog. He revealed email recommendations for script changes with names redacted. In regards to future support for a reboot Riodran said, "In the future, if some project actually does get underway, I may not be able to comment on it for contractual reasons, but you can tell how I’m feeling about it by what I do or don’t say. Am I talking about it? Promoting it? Sharing cool things? I am probably happy. Am I completely ignoring it and never mentioning it on social media? Yeah . . . that’s probably not a good sign. For instance, check out my website, rickriordan.com. Do you see any indication there that the Percy Jackson movies ever existed? No. No, you do not."