Mythaken Identity – A review of Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters
Title: Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters
Production Company: Fox 2000 Pictures
Run Time: 106 minutes
Director: Thor Freudenthal
Stars: Logan Lerman, Alexandra Daddario, Brandon T. Jackson, Stanley Tucci, Nathan Fillion
Summary: As good, if not better than its predecessor. The kids are all back and better than ever. Only the adults drag this movie down a notch from being great to just average.
It is apropos that, since teens and young adults make up the largest bloc of moviegoers these days that tales written specifically with them in mind should be turned into box office masterpieces.
Harry Potter, The Hunger Games and dozens of other films and franchises were inspired by books whose target audiences are under twenty five. This doesn’t, however, mean that adults won’t find some enjoyment in them too.
Take Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters. Logan Lerman returns as Jackson, a young demigod who once again must save humanity and the demigods from certain doom as another omnipotent child with delusions of grandeur seeks to unleash power that he doesn’t understand.
Along for the ride with Percy are his pals Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario) and Grover (Brandon T. Jackson) who both return from the previous installment which found Percy chasing the lightning thief.
Several other characters also return, albeit with other actors playing the roles. Most notably, Anthony Head steps into the hooves previously worn by Pierce Brosnan as the half human-half horse creature Chiron.
Notably, the Gods featured in part one are absent this time around. The kids are left to face their opposition by themselves which lends a much more life threatening tone to the series.
The main drawback from the tale, though, are the adults. While the kids manage to easily convince us of their abilities and vulnerabilities, the more mature cast members, many of whom have abilities of their own, play second fiddle to their younger counterparts, some even annoyingly so.
Take, for instance, Stanley Tucci who is a marvelous actor yet seems almost out of place here. Unlike his Hunger Games character where he is allowed to shine bright amidst the younger stars, here he seems to fade into the background far too easily and his character virtually serves no purpose other than to foil Jackson on more than a few occasions.
Overall, though, the film works on many levels. Inspired by ancient mythology and the tales of gods and demigods, the characters and story elements remain true to the source material. This makes the tale worth seeing for audience members of all ages.
But all in all, I miss the characters and actors we met in the first installment. Hopefully, if there’s a third chapter, they find a way to bring those folks back for another round.
I give Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters 3-1/2 out of 5 stars.
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