For anyone who loves the movie going experience this a perfect match. Chris Columbus has brought yet another beloved children’s book to life in his adaptation of Percy Jackson and the Olympians. The Lightening Thief is a charming lighthearted fare; that has smartly been adapted for the screen.
Percy Jackson’s (Logan Lerman) world changes when he discovers that he is a demigod. Soon he finds that his inadequacies serve him well; and that the Greek myths, the ones we all forget in grade school, are more than just ancient history.
Chris Columbus does a great job of making Greek mythology feel like home in the Western world. In fact the juxtaposition of our modern realities to Greek mythology are what make the film charming to all ages. The CGI is all tailored to fit in well with the needs of the script and doesn’t over power it. Whereas other films of it’s nature have spent much more time working on some of the more flamboyant points of the novel Chris Columbus’ The Lightning Thief seamlessly blends all the elements together. While films like Harry Potter fail to capture the essence of the book, Percy Jackson and The Olympians does a remarkably better job.
That being said some alterations have been made. For those of you that have read the book, sorry to say, as dictated by Zeus, the Kronos topic is closed for discussion. The “family” relationship that the book focuses on is the crux of this film. But don’t get too excited, if you hoped to see the jerk cousin from the book’s prophecy he doesn’t make the cut either. Although major arcs have been dismissed from this adaptation, it does a great job of keeping the heart of the book in the forefront.
The cast also shares the credit for blending the two worlds seamlessly. They do an excellent job adapting the characters from the myths to the modern world. Brandon T. Jackson exceptionally modernizes the Greek satyr, Grover, by cleverly adapting modern style to the flirtatious and quirky nature of his character. Jake Abel carries Luke’s altered character off well, but due to some editing of the books for screen, it doesn’t all seem to add up on screen. Logan Lerman is the heart of the film. He not only ties together the film’s other cast and characters, but also reels in the audience. Percy Jackson feels like an accidental hero (to himself) in the book, and Lerman plays those insecurities and his perseverance well.
When I left the theatre I remember feeling as light as my own childhood memories of going to the theatre. The best part about the film is that as an adult you get to re-live the wonderment of grade school mythology; and as a child you can almost believe that the old hero stories aren’t all lost. Percy Jackson and The Olympians: The Lightning Thief is an old fashioned good time at the movies.
Also just a tip (especially for those that enjoyed the books): Don’t miss the end of the credits, I promise you will get your just reward.
Rated: PG for action violence and peril, some scary images and suggestive material, and mild language.
Release Date: 2010-02-12
Screenplay: Craig Titley
Official Website: http://www.percyjacksonthemovie.com/