'Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters' (2013) Movie Review

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters movie review
Logan Lerman in Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters
Photo: 20th Century Fox

I saw 2010's Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, but for the life of me I don't remember what happens and after watching Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, I still can't piece the entirety of the first film together. However, the only important details the audience seems to need to know are 1.) Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman) is the demigod son of Poseidon; 2.) Percy did something great in the first film by catching the Lightning Thief; and 3.) Luke (Jake Abel), the son of Hermes, is a bad guy. If there's more to know, I'm sorry but I'm at a loss, not that it really matters. I could read my review of the first film as a refresher, but that feels like cheating... sort of like how the studio is cheating anyone that pays to see this mess.

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters
Grade: D-

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters"Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters" is a 20th Century Fox release, directed by Thor Freudenthal and is rated PG-13 for fantasy action violence, some scary images and mild language. The running time is .

The cast includes Logan Lerman, Mary Birdsong, Missi Pyle, Alexandra Daddario, Yvette Nicole Brown, Nathan Fillion, Anthony Head, Stanley Tucci, Robert Knepper, Derek Mears, Ron Perlman, Shohreh Aghdashloo, Octavia Spencer and Craig Robinson.

An adaptation of Rick Riordan's second Percy Jackson book, this time around Fox has dropped further down the directorial ladder, leaving Chris Columbus behind and hiring Hotel for Dogs and Diary of a Wimpy Kid helmer Thor Freudenthal to take a second stab at starting a franchise fire, which should, at the very least, give you some idea of the audience this film is intended for. Suffice to say, rational thinking, or any thinking for that matter, is supremely frowned upon.

The story follows Percy as he and his demigod gang -- Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario), Grover (Brandon T. Jackson) and his newfound, cyclops brother Tyson (Douglas Smith) -- chase after Luke and his minions to acquire the fabled Golden Fleece before Luke reaches it and resurrects Kronos (in case you didn't get enough of him in Wrath of the Titans) with the goal of overthrowing and destroying the Gods. Yeah, essentially Luke has daddy issues that need dealing with.

As a result, Sea of Monsters becomes an extended chase sequence, leading to the titular locale, which just so happens to be the Bermuda Triangle. Will Percy and his friends acquire the Golden Fleece and save everyone or will Luke get it and Kronos will dominate once again, destroying the Earth and the Olympians in the process? Oh, the tension is too much to bear!

The stakes are nil and the decisions that are made are pointless. At one moment we watch as a fantastical sea horse must be summoned to take Percy and friends out to Luke's yacht, but later we learn Percy can summon a tidal wave and ride it wherever he pleases. Oh, I was also reminded the sons of Poseidon are blessed with the ability to heal through contact with water when wounded, don't forget that little factoid while you watch.

At one point Percy hugs his brother for a solid 20 seconds where in that same amount of time he could have prevented an entire sequence of horrible events from taking place. It's maddening and no surprise the script was written by Marc Guggenheim whose most recent efforts include Green Lantern and X-Men Origins: Wolverine. How anyone could have read this script and thought Yup, we got it! is beyond me. Movies such as this should not be made and yet they continue to go into production every day as if it's a challenge to see which studio can waste the most money.

I feel sorry most for Logan Lerman who once again suffers under the weight of such a boring character. Lerman had a bit of a breaking out moment last year with The Perks of Being a Wallflower and lucky for him this film won't be seen by enough people to stunt his career as he has Darren Aronofsky's Noah next on his release calendar along with David Ayer's Fury.

On the flip side of that, Jake Abel has now been involved in two of the year's worst movies, this and The Host. He's a poor man's Kevin Bacon who comes off as if he's trying to be Kevin Bacon as opposed to establishing his own identity.

The prospect of establishing a film franchise is something studios seek, but they are unwilling to put the work in to make them successful. They hire hacks to flesh out their screenplays and the results are rarely worthy of the word "mediocre", a word Sea of Monsters wishes it qualified for. This is a downright travesty with little to no redeeming value whatsoever. The fact it has a few fancy visual effects is no savior for the horrible excuse of a film it truly is.


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  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/racquetman/ racquetman

    You should have just given it an "F" if it is truly one of the worst movies this year. You're too soft. (-:

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/TheLastEquivocationofBrist/ TheLastEquivocationofBrist

      I think The Host got an F for being one of the worst movies Brad's *ever* seen, not just this year.

    • charman

      hahahahaahahaahahahahaah keep lying yeah yeah, somebody here has a horrible taste in movies like this loser critic over here, your opinion is stupid, this movie is an a idiot.

    • charman


  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/andyluvsfilms/ andyluvsfilms

    Nice review Brad, obviously being a film critic isnt all buffets and business cards, i applaud you for having to watch all these F's, D's and C's #eeek!
    Looking at box office mojo, the first one didnt make a profit so its kinda surprising this one got made, it'll be interesting to see how this one does and whether it'll be the end of the franchise. It certainly wont be gettin' my shekels, it sounds pretty awful.

    • charman

      no it isnt awfull, this stupid wannabe critic doesnt know anything go watch the movie instead.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/deerhunter/ deerhunter

    Come on, a D- ??? Is there such a thing? LOL

    When it comes low to the grade of D, are pluses and minuses appropriate? I grade my films similarly, however, when a film is so bad to warrant a D grade, I skip the pluses and minuses...It's just a D or F...

    Did you really want to score this movie an F? It looks like junk, as with MOST of what comes out of the studios these days..

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/TheLastEquivocationofBrist/ TheLastEquivocationofBrist

      I think it's subjective and probably doesn't really matter, but for me a D- would mean you enjoyed exactly one moment in the movie...or maybe that it's terrible but not to such a degree that you feel like watching it actually *harmed* you.

  • http://cineenuruguay.com/ Driver

    "Oh, the tension is too much to bear!" You got to love that.

    Yeah, wasn't expecting it to be this bad, but it look like we got another 2013 mistake, one of many... Brad, that Worst of year list it's going to be a tough one, to many candidates.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/jaybob/ jaybob

    I thought the first one was horrendously bad, worse film I saw in that year. Still can't believe that got a sequel. I thought it was a flop.

  • http://themoviegurusblog.blogspot.com The Movie Guru

    This movie looked absolutely awful. I won't see it, even for a couple clicks on my site.

  • Aidan Khan

    Good review. I saw this coming due to the awful reviews it has been getting by other critics.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/m1/ m1

    The first film wasn't awful, but it should have been so much better given the strength and creativity of the source material. It's a shame they weren't able to improve upon it.

  • rvastar

    Don't hold back, Brad!

    Give it to us straight!

    We can take it!

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/TheLastEquivocationofBrist/ TheLastEquivocationofBrist

      What made you think he held back? (Assuming you're not being sarcastic)

      • rvastar

        Now I can't tell if YOU'RE being sarcastic :)

  • http://letterboxd.com/gman/ G-Man

    Honestly I couldn't even bear the trailer the first time I saw it. Then it came up during several future movies. Will be skipping this.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Ryguy815/ Ryguy815

    I liked the first one and this one looks like fun too. I'll wait for DVD though because of the awful reviews it's been getting.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Winchester/ Winchester

    I'm not strictly in the target age range for this film and I haven't seen the first one yet at all so I'm unlikely to catch it anyway.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Kessler/ Kessler

    I don't even now why they made a sequel. Nobody really talks about the first one anymore, and that didn't even make a profit from what I can remember.

    Doesn't really matter though because I'm not seeing it. Maybe Percy Jackson make Hollywood realize that not every successful book series makes for compelling movies.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/wuggles/ B. Smith

    I'm not surprised that this wasn't that good. The first movie was boring. This has also lowered my expectations for other book adaptations such as Divergent and Mortal Instruments.

  • http://seikozoorhess.deviantart.net Paul Hennen

    I actually waited almost until this one came out to sea film 1, and there was obviously a plot but with the point of having some silliness (like the book) and having some fun, which cannot be said for Clash/Wrath which makes you laugh unintentionally (or Immortals which was more serious but had the dumbest looking titans ever).
    Even if this movie is bad I really want to see the scene they filmed at abandoned Six Flags New Orleans. The traveling is more interesting because they travel to real locations, not fake or mythical ones (for the most part, like seeing Hades in 1).

    However, I do expect this film to be a little messy because instead of doing a straight up adaptation of "Sea Of Monsters" they wanted to throw in elements from other books. This was unnecessary to even think about, doing this has caused so many issues with them making another Narnia sequel, they should've never have gone there. I obviously hasn't seen the results, so maybe it really is bad, but when you start combining books, the results always seem messy.

    • http://seikozoorhess.deviantart.net Paul Hennen

      Oh, in case you don't know, the "fans" who are the central core to any fantasy franchise, were angered by "Narnia3" because of them adding in a lot of elements from the 4th book, which was to be the 4th movie. The box office would've been better if they didn't do this, and now estates and studios are fighting because one doesn't want to even make Silver Chair because of the elements they already used the other does, and the studio Walden Media wants sort of "reboot/prequel" done which is Magician's Nephew." And now there has been talk of "Horse And His Boy" which takes place during the time gap when the kids become the kings and queens of Narnia and when they return home. So look at the mess they made. This is what happens with you make this kind of mistake.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Roger/ Roger Judd

    "Movies such as this should not be made and yet they continue to go into production every day as if it's a challenge to see which studio can waste the most money."

    Lmao nice

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Hudsucker/ Hudsucker

    Why'd you take the job Nathan, why?

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/azjoker1/ azjoker1

    I saw it today and didn't think it was all too bad. Absolutely it was corny and kiddy but overall I thought it was just a fun enjoyable kids movie that was better than the first.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/TheLastEquivocationofBrist/ TheLastEquivocationofBrist

    If I watch Firefly will I suddenly understand why vast numbers of people love him so much? He kinda seems like a poor man's Bruce Campbell to me.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/TheLastEquivocationofBrist/ TheLastEquivocationofBrist

      That was supposed to be in reply to Hudsucker's comment.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Corbin/ Corbin

    Well, I saw the first one, so I'll probably end up seeing it. I just hope I have a better time with it than Brad.

  • Preston Hauptman

    It's a KIDS MOVIE take your kids if you have them and watch there eyes pop out of there head due to the visual effects. This movie was never going to be good we could tell that from the first one. They made the sequal because the books are amazing and have a large fan base not Harry Potter/twilight big but a decent size. An if you really wanted to get to the roots of things the book series itself doesnt get really good till the third book anyway.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Samdini/ Samdini

    My grandkids want to see this movie. In general, would you say it's suitable for a 5-year-old boy and an eight-year-old girl? Mom said no but is now leaning toward yes.

  • Graham

    Maybe you should read the books..and if you are going to write reviews, watch the films properly. Its aimed at children.... are you sure youre not just giving this a D/F because it wasn't as good as the lesbian porn you enjoyed last night....... Would a 12 year old like it??.... Yes is the answer.... so does it deserve a D?.... No is the answer.... Idiots

  • Galax(The Seventh Sage)

    I tried to watch it; As a fan of Percy Jackson & The Olympians, as well as Heroes of Olympus, I felt like I should. The first movie made me cringe. Horridly and repeatedly. However, I pushed through and watched it till the end.

    This second one, however...I turned it off less than five minutes in when I realized:

    1) Thalia is being pronounced the same as Talia. Honestly, I don't know which way is the "correct" pronunciation, but I always figured if it was meant to be said Talia, they wouldn't have the H in it.
    2) Thalia doesn't have her shield, Aegis.
    3) She's fighting a pair of ogres or cyclopes, and not the small army described in the book - What was it, "the worst monsters Hades could unleash"? Cyclopes did play a role in the flight to Camp Halfblood, but...In Brooklyn. No mention of if they caught up at the gates.
    4) Last I recall, the magical borders had always been there. Thalia's pine tree only reinforced them.
    5) Thalia was listed around 14 or 15 when she died. Why is the actress 9?
    6) In fact, why is she not using the spear she's SUPPOSED to be using? The one that collapses in to a can of Mace, like Percy's sword being a CAP Pen? Still don't know why they used a clickpen in the movies.
    7) The tinny effect on Lerman's voice during the opening narrative makes him sound like he's speaking in to a tin can phone. I wonder how much they paid for one of those that can project?

    • charman

      shut up you stupid idiot.

      • Galax(The Seventh Sage)

        Do you have any constructive criticism for my month-old comment, or are you just another child who insults things he doesn't agree with?

        In fact, let's not forget that this is actually a book adaptation. There's something to be said for the fact that it's an adaptation.

        Changing major plot points to be nonexistant in the first movie is not one of them.
        Somehow warranting a second when the first was screwed to be almost unrecognizable is not one of them, either.

  • charman

    this is no d, brad brevet get out of here you dont know how to review a film, idiot.

  • Guest

    Considering some issues, this movie was more loyal to the book than the other ... And the Sea of Monsters ... it's probably the poorest book in all of the series (including Heroes of Olympus) So ... don't give up on the series yet ... the best books I've read of the series are to come with The Curse of the Titan (my favorite book ... Thalia is here so).