We saw Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief on Saturday. Let me say from the start that I haven’t read the book. My daughter Amber(10) has the whole series and loves them though, so hopefully I’ll get around to it eventually.

The movie was fun. Percy is a Manhattan high-schooler who learns he is a demigod. He’s the son of Poseidon and a mortal woman.

This revelation comes out after Zeus wrongly blames Percy for stealing his lightning bolt and threatens a war with Poseidon that will finish humanity. Percy’s mother is kidnapped by Hades, brother of Zeus and Poseidon who also wants the power the lightning bolt would provide.

Joined by a satyr and the butt-kicking, demigod daughter of Athena, Percy sets off on a quest to save his mom. There are several stops along the road, including Medusa’s lair and the Lotus Hotel and Casino in Vegas. There are monsters to fight and gods to outwit.

I personally love that the book and movie have taken the traditional Greek gods, goddesses and myths, put a slightly new spin on them and introduced them to our kids. In Amber’s case at least, not only is she excited by the book series, it’s also sparked an interest in mythology.

The movie was enjoyable and action-filled. It’s chock full of gods and monsters, fight scenes and magic. Amber could barely sit still through some of the tenser parts.

After the movie, I asked Amber if she liked it. She said it was awesome. When I asked her if it was like the book she said yes, but then the more she talked about the differences, the more I questioned if they were really that similar. Apparently for a kid, the fact it had the same characters and some similar situations was enough, but to me it sounds as if there were more differences, even the whole purpose for the road trip was not the same. In the movie, they have to find Persephone’s pearls. In the book, according to Amber, they’re given the three pearls, there is no treasure map to finding them.

I really liked the movie. It was great for our family to see together, adn we’ll be buying the DVD when it comes out. But I’d also encourage your kids to read the book. If Amber’s any indication, they won’t be able to put it down. Literally. We walked out of school one day when I picked her up with her nose still buried in the book. She had to see what happened next. And be forewarned, they will want the whole series.


  • Went to see the movie yesterday with my DH and it was okay for us but not something will probably watch again. The young actors and actresses were cute to watch and some of the plot line was just a bit too hard to swallow as have read in other peoples reactions and will not go into specifics so as not to spoil anything for those who have not watched yet.
    I am now looking forward to more gods and goddess action in Clash Of The Titans when it is released, remember reading in school almost 31 years ago so the movie will be a “sensory treat” for my fantasy action adventure loving self!

    jackie b central texas

  • stacybuckeye

    When I saw the preview I thought it was a great way to get the kids involved in mythology. Glad your daughter (and you) liked it!

  • Aidan loves the books, as do I. I’ve always loved mythology though, I had already assumed the movie diverged from the book but it’s nice to have confirmation of it.

  • I read the book and liked it – and I’ve been trying to find someone to go see the film with me. There aren’t too many of my peers who feel comfortable going to a ‘kid’s’ movie, though, apparently. Maybe I’ll go alone…

    I think the changes you talk about from book to film probably make it more exciting and understandable as a stand-alone.

    Nice review!

  • I think the books and the movie sound like something The Girl would enjoy. It’s good to know there are differences so it won’t ruin it if we see the movie first.

  • Catherine

    The movie was a dissapointment. Then again, I’ve read the books, so I guess I was dissapointed by the MAJOR changes. If you haven’t read the book but you’ve seen the movie, I feel sorry for you. You have the plot all wrong, and you’re missing out on an awesome story.

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