Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief
It’s the 21st century, but the gods of Mount Olympus and assorted monsters have walked out of the pages of high school student Percy Jackson’s Greek mythology texts and into his life. And they’re not happy: Zeus’ lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect. Even more troubling is the sudden disappearance of Percy’s mother. As Percy adapts to his newly discovered status as a demi-god (his father is Poseidon), he finds himself caught between the battling titans of Mt. Olympus. He and his friends embark on a cross-country adventure to catch the true lightning thief, save Percy’s mom, and unravel a mystery more powerful than the gods themselves.
Make no mistake about it. This movie has a lot of battle scenes and sword fights in it in addition to fire-breathing creatures. Yet as it briskly moves ahead on the big screen there is a lot to like and enjoy. The film features some of the best special effects, i.e. CGI work, I have seen in a film. We see great battles and a character using the mythological flying shoes. Some of the sword fighting includes training by those who plan to defend what is right and moral. The lead character, Percy Jackson, is played by a charming young actor named Logan Lerman who brings determination, grit and loyalty to the role. When his mother is captured, he doggedly goes all the way to the underworld to do what he must to free her.
There is a lot of fantasy type violence in the movie but with surprisingly and refreshingly very little blood. Even as a main character beheads another character, the blade is seen and the resultant head after the slice but there is no blood and due to a fanciful hair-do, the scene is not frightening. In fact, the head of this evil character, a female goddess, is used to help the good guys out when they get in a jam. Granted, the film might be a bit too intense for some viewers, which is why we are listing the violence content in the content list below. The premise of the story is that Zeus (Sean Bean) is searching for the one who has stolen lightning from him and declares there will be war if it is not returned by a certain time.
This film features faithful friends to young Percy, including one he romantically likes, namely Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario). With its coming-of-age story and good taking on evil with great passion, the themes in the movie are to be commended. Percy’s quest leads him to learn who it was who stole Zeus’ lightning bolt. We gladly award our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal to this film for ages twelve plus. It is technically outstanding and features wonderful performances from Lerman, Brandon T. Jackson as Percy’s protector Grover, Uma Thurman as Medusa and Pierce Brosnan as Chiron in addition to Catherine Keener as Percy’s mother, Sally Jackson and finally Daddario as Annabeth. If you want to be transported from the realities of life for two hours, this movie is a great vehicle to do just that. And it might just encourage young viewers to check out some literature about the ancient gods and what they represented.