Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters
Running Time: 1 hour 46 minutes
A few years after saving Olympus, Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman) finds himself living and training with the other demigods at Camp Half-Blood. As time passes, Percy begins to feel more and more ordinary, and wonders if maybe his first adventure was an anomaly. Feeling bereft of guidance and purpose, Percy and his friends Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario), Grover (Brandon T. Jackson) and his newly discovered half-brother Tyson (Douglas Smith) jump at the chance to go on another quest. This time, they must beat another group of rogue demigods to an island in the Sea of Monsters and recover the Golden Fleece before it can be used to awaken an ancient and terrifying evil.
Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters is OK. The acting is fine, the effects are decent, the dialogue is solid and the story is alright. I felt the same way about the original so I am not surprised by my reaction to this movie. Logan Lerman is an odd fit as Percy Jackson because as an actor he comes across as more cerebral than physical and these movies are heavy on the action and light on the story. This movie has pulled together a great cast, but the material isn’t capable of putting them to good use. Stanley Tucci manages to squeeze a laugh or two out of his role as Mr. D, Nathan Fillion gets the most out of a cameo as Hermes and Jake Abel is a welcome sight as the returning Luke, but you feel like so much more could have been done with each of them.
I am not familiar with the book series, written by Rick Riordan, that these movies are based on so I can’t compare the two, but something that I feel is missing from this film if any kind of depth to the relationships. In a cast populated by attractive young actors and actresses, I am constantly surprised by the total avoidance of any and all romantic subplots and undertones. If Percy and Annabeth were a couple then there would be some more concrete emotional stakes to the action in the film, but without that element you never feel particularly invested. Could PercyJackson: Sea of Monsters have been great? Maybe, but all I know for sure is that it was just OK. C+
I find that the Percy Jackson movies are reliably good family films. They remind me of one of my favorite childhood movies The Neverending Story. The movies are full of adventure, heroics and friendship. I think pre-teen and young teenagers will really respond to this movie, but as an adult it is lacking for me. I agree with Scott that the movie misses because it doesn't have any real deep emotional nuance. There is considerably more at stake in Sea of Monsters, but director Thor Freudenthal, doesn't capitalize on this opportunity, and plays the emotional scenes at the surface level. My ten-year-old nephew thought the movie was awesome because of the great special effects and action sequences, as for me I can only give it a C+.