SciFiNow and The List Reviews Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters

SciFiNow and The List Reviews Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters

The reviews are pouring in and here are two new review of Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters. Percy Jackson gets compared to Harry Potter in both (which really starts to annoy me.) Take a look at what they had to say.

SciFiNow’s Review

PJ-SOM-posterSon of Poseidon Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman) is having a crisis of confidence. Is he a one quest wonder or was he truly meant for great things?

Before our young hero can reach an answer the demigod safe haven Camp Half Blood, home to the sons and daughters of the gods of Olympus, is imperiled.

Percy and his friends Grover (Brandon T Jackson) and Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario) must go on a quest to bring back the Golden Fleece from the Sea of Monsters and restore the protective barrier around the camp before the mythical monsters and beasties looking to destroy them break in. Meanwhile, Percy also learns of a prophesy which could mean he is either the salvation or damnation of Olympus, and that he has a cyclops half brother.

Greek mythology with a modern twist? It’s so crazy, it might just work. Except it’s all just a bit too safe.

It’s been three years since Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief was released. However, director Thor Freudenthal’s sequel takes little time rattling through expository dialogue to get newcomers up to speed. A little time to establish Percy’s neuroses about his absentee father, rivalry with Ares’ daughter Clarisse (Leven Rambin) and an attack by an angry mechanical bull later and Sea Of Monsters races ahead with plenty of action but a lack of character development and some truly dreadful dialogue.

The three leads are now joined by Douglas Smith as Percy’s half brother Tyson, and they do their best with what they’re given, but cliché lines about the importance of family and utterly predictable character reveals feel clawing and lacking in any emotion. Villain Luke (Jake Abel) is laughably obvious: he’s so evil he switches off classical music when prisoners are brought before him, plays chess menacingly and wears black. Ooo, nasty.

A few characters have been recast since The Lightning Thief with Stanley Tucci (The Hunger GamesCaptain America: The First Avenger) taking over as Mr D, Anthony Head (BuffyMerlin) as Chiron and Nathan Fillion stopping by long enough to make a veiled Firefly reference. They’re welcome scene-stealers.

Harry Potter might be a lazy comparison, but it is unavoidable one because this kind of territory has been covered in recent memory and much better.

Percy Jackson: Sea Of Monsters is lightweight next to the might of Mr Potter, descending into shallow waters after a strong start and it doesn’t do half as many interesting things as it could with the mythos on which it’s based. However, if you’re in the mood for a bit of brainless fun you could do worse.

The List’s Review

Percy Jackson son of Poseidon PosterThe last decade has seen dozens of aspiring knock-offs of Harry Potter hitting the screens (The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant), all promising expanded universes unlikely to ever be realized in franchise form. Chris Columbus’ 2010 Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief, which attempted to ground its teen adventure in mythological lore, has at least made it to second base with this sequel, but there’s no sign of any gain in momentum from the uninspiring original.

Taken from another Rick Riordan novel, Sea of Monsters opens with a prologue explaining the creation of the barrier that protect Camp Half Blood from the dangers of the outside world. When a mechanical bull bursts through the boundaries, causing chaos at the camp, Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman) takes responsibility for venturing in search of the Golden Fleece which might repair the damage, a voyage that leads him to the Bermuda Triangle and the titular sea of monsters.

Director Thor Freudenthal has clearly got a budget to spend, and this sequel boasts several big effects sequences, including a fights atop a luxury yacht, deep inside a gigantic sea-creature, and a final battle with a Cyclops below and the inside an abandoned amusement park. Unfortunately the quality of the cast has been significantly downgraded, with no Steve Coogan, Uma Thurman or Pierce Brosnan, and only a B-Team of Stanley Tucci and Anthony Head phoning in sideline encouragement. Only Nathan Fillion hits the spot as Hermes, now recast as a UPS manager, and delivering the only neat in-joke as he muses on why the best televison series always get cancelled; as a veteran of Joss Whedon’s Firefly, Fillion should know.

Percy Jackson; Sea of Monsters is a serviceable romp for pre-teens, but ultimately suffers from the franchise’s lack of cultural penetration. Elaborate backstories have more meaning when the characters are known and loved; Percy Jackson’s endless exposition only demonstrates why he’s nobody’s favourite boy-wizard.

Hey, I'm Rebecca! I'm a writer and an avid hiker. I love writing, from PJM posts to stories. Anything you want to know, just ask. Follow me on Twitter (@RebeccaColorado) and RebeccaKing.Tumblr.com.

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5 Comments

  1. musicluvr (Annabeth Chase, Daughter of Athena) - August 6, 2013

    Ouch!!!!!…..those sucked!!!!!!!!!!!!!…….I HATE critics……..I never agree with them……lol…..and they’re NEVER right…..just sayin……..oh well……..what can u do?!……I LOVE Harry Potter movies/book series…but OBVIOUSLY PJ isn’t HP…so they need to LAY OFF the comparisons!!!!!!!……..Those of us REAL fans know that we love both series’…for different reasons…but they r both AMAZING…..ENOUGH SAID!!!!!!!!!!!…….(Got a little carried away…but it makes me SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO mad when people hate on PJ…and compare it to HP!!!!!!!)

  2. Kara Acosta (Mrs. Percy Jackson) - August 6, 2013

    Jeez……..

  3. Coco - August 6, 2013

    I hate the Harry Potter comparisons!

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