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Fantasy - Sword'n Sandals

Percy Jackson 1: And the Lightning Thief (2010)

Duration1h 58m
RatingsUK: PG, USA: PG, Saudi Arabia: G
Source of storyA novel by Rick Riordan
DirectorChris Columbus
Writers/ScriptCraig Titley
StarringLogan Lerman, Brabdon T. Jackson, Alexandra Daddario, Sean Bean, Pierce Brosnan, Steve Coogan, Rosasio Dawson, Catherine Keener, Kevin McKidd, Joe Pantoliano, Uma Thurman, 
RatingsIMDb: 5.9 by 176,754 people.  Rotten Tomatoes: 49% by 149 critics.

Elevator Pitch: A bit of a way into the story, Percy and we the viewers find out that he is the offspring of Sally Jackson and Poseidon, and so is a demigod. He is sent to demigod camp, while his mum is captured by the Minotaur and taken to Hades. The camp is managed by Chiron a centaur, in our world Percy’s Latin teacher. He is accompanied by his friend Grover, who turns out to be a satyr. Thereafter Percy, Grover and a young female demigod, Annabeth, go on a quest to find the Lightning Bolt and to rescue Percy’s mother. To do this they must recover three pearls which are to be found in different difficult environments. 

Content: No sex, nudity, drinking or smoking except for Percy’s wicked stepfather having a beer. We see the young demigods at the boot camp engaging in sword fights and mock battles, then the quest which is actually supposed to recover the lightning bolt. Most strikingly is their meeting with Medusa, played by Uma Thurman. She has her head lopped off and they carry it away in a sack. They battle with the hydra, using the head to turn it to stone, and so on. Later they meet the gods who are in conference, and Percy converses with his father.

A View: The author of the books said it was like having his life’s work put through a meat grinder, and that the three pearls thing made no sense. Despite its critical failure however, it made money. I know that the basic premise is that people are the offspring of gods, but don’t realise it until told or attacked, but I did not like it. And honestly I have always had a bit of a problem with centaurs, and seeing Pierce Brosnan as the front half of a horse nagged me quite a bit. I mean, how do they deal with their bodily functions? So not really a watch for me, but if you need to give it a go don’t try to understand it. 

Additional Info: In the books Percy is 12 years old, in the film 17. The author felt that this change was seriously detrimental to the film’s potential success.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels

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