Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief Parent Guide
"Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightening Thief" may spark curiosity about the ancient Greeks who ruled the world from their thrones atop Mt. Olympus.
Parent Movie Review
If you haven’t read the book by Rick Riordan upon which this movie is based, it might not hurt to brush up on Greek mythology before heading off to the theater to watch Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman) and the Olympians battle it out over a stolen lightening bolt. It makes more sense when you remember Zeus (Sean Bean), Poseidon (Kevin McKidd) and Hades (Steve Coogan) are brothers and that sibling rivalry is at the heart of this brawl.
Unfortunately Percy, the son of Poseidon, doesn’t know anything about his unusual parentage or the real identity of his buddy Grover (Brandon T. Jackson) who attends school with him. Dealing with dyslexia and ADHD makes getting through class challenging enough for the teen and going home is no easier. He and his mother (Catherine Keener) live with an abusive stepfather/husband (Joe Pantoliano) who constantly reminds the pair they are lucky to have him, while demanding their servitude and obedience.
Then one day while on a fieldtrip to a Greek history museum, Percy is suddenly attacked by his substitute teacher (Maria Olsen) who turns into a hideous winged creature. Though he is shocked by the experience, he is even more taken aback when he discovers his true identity and learns that he has been accused of stealing Zeus’ lightening bolt. With his uncle’s minions constantly trying to kill him, Percy is whisked off to a safe retreat in the middle of the woods where he meets hundreds of other kids who are also the offspring of a Greek god and human parent. Given a sword and body armor, Percy is immediately thrown into hand-to-hand combat training with other young demigods including Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario), the beautiful and skillful daughter of Athena (Melina Kanakaredes).
But practicing his swordsmanship seems a waste of time when Percy finds out his uncle Hades is holding his mother in the underworld. With plenty of adolescent bravado in play, Percy sneaks out of camp with Annabeth and Grover to rescue the captive. The journey they embark on allows for the introduction of numerous other mythical figures like Medusa (Uma Thurman), Persephone (Rosario Dawson), Aphrodite (Serinda Swan), a Minotaur, and five janitors who morph into the fearsome, multi-headed Hydra. The teens also become caught in a drug-like trance after eating lotus flowers in a ritzy Las Vegas casino. Finally breaking free of the stupor, they find themselves back on the road but with limited time to rescue Percy’s mom and prevent a brewing war between the Olympians.
Fortunately the script contains only brief sexual innuendo and discussions, and infrequent profanities. However the clashes between humans and mythological creatures include depictions of bloody injuries, weapon use (mainly swords and knives) and many moments of peril. In one scene a female character is decapitated and although there is no gore accompanying the portrayal, the lifeless head is repeatedly seen throughout the rest of the film.
In the same manner that National Treasure rekindled an interest in American History and Night at the Museum became an ad for New York’s Museum of Natural History, Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightening Thief may spark curiosity about the ancient Greeks who ruled the world from their thrones atop Mt. Olympus.Directed by Chris Columbus. Starring Logan Lerman, Kevin McKidd, Steve Coogan. Running time: 116 minutes. Theatrical release February 12, 2010. Updated July 19, 2016
Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief
Rating & Content Info
Why is Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief rated PG? Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief is rated PG by the MPAA for action violence and peril, some scary images and suggestive material, and mild language.
In this high action teen-oriented film, hideous and mythical monsters attack characters, throw cars and attempt to inflict death. An animal is impaled with a horn. Humans engage in hand-to-hand combat with swords, knives and arrows. The battles result in bloody injuries. A female character and a monster are decapitated (no blood is shown) and the severed head of the woman is seen several times throughout the movie. Teens are nearly involved in an accident after one of them falls asleep while driving. A flame-engulfed monster throws fireballs at objects causing explosions. A teen is caught under a falling statue. Characters turn to stone. Men are shot with sleep-inducing darts. Depictions of the underworld include the sound of screaming, skeletons, huge fires and human figures engulfed in flames. Several characters are shocked with an electric volt. Some female characters discuss or endure mistreatment from men. A teen nearly drowns after being submerged in water. A young adult is attacked with a pitched fork. Characters discuss sexual relations between humans and gods. Female characters wear bikinis and scanty or low-cut clothing. A partially naked statue is briefly seen. Other brief sexual innuendo is included in the script along with infrequent profanities and song lyrics that include a reference to the underworld location. Characters eat flowers that cause drug-like effects.
Page last updated July 19, 2016
Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief Parents' Guide
Why is Percy reluctant to take on his role as the son of Poseidon? Is it sometimes difficult to live up to parental or familial expectations?
Why does Percy’s mentor Chiron (Pierce Brosnan) believe training is so important? What life skills can teens practice before leaving home to help them be more prepared for adulthood?
What challenges of single parenting are portrayed in this film? What sacrifices does Percy’s mother make for him? How does Percy show his devotion for his mother?
Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief is based on a novel by Rick Riordan.
The most recent home video release of Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief movie is June 29, 2010. Here are some details…
Release Date: 29 June 2010
Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightening Thief releases on DVD and Blu-ray with the following bonus extras:
- 5 Extended and Deleted Scenes: The Museum Grover Photographs Aphrodite, Int. Pickup Truck Grover Talks About Zeus daughter, Lotus Land Casino Grover Dances, Lotus Land Casino Percy, Annabeth and Grover Fight The Guards, and Hades Mansion Hades Talks To Percy.
- Discover Your Powers Quiz
- The Book Comes To Life
Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightening Thief on Blu-ray also includes:
- 5 Additional Extended and Deleted Scenes: The Infirmary Percy Meets Annabeth, Aphrodites Daughters Grover Jumps Into Spa, Int. Bus Percy Looks At The Map, Auntie Ems Medusa Chases Percy, and Lotus Land Casino Percy Meets 50s Guy.
- Secrets of the Gods
- Inside Camp Half-Blood
- On Set With Brandon T. Jackson
- Meet The Demigods
Related home video titles:
Some of the tales about these ancient deities comes to life through the magic of puppets in Jim Hensons The Story Teller/ Greek Myths. Pierce Brosnan plays another father who is separated from his child and who must fight the government to get her back in Evelyn. A teen hero must step up to save his people from the clutch of an evil ruler in Eragon. In The Indian in the Cupboard, which is based on a book series by Lynne Reid Banks, a young boy receives an unusual gift for his birthday that brings his plastic toys to life.