Finally, I saw a decent movie today (with my two older kids along with a cousin): “Sea of Monsters.” Afterwards, my seven year old said, “I just want to watch the beginning again and again.” I loved the beginning too! It’s all about how Thalia, the daughter of Zeus, gave up her life to save her three friends: Annabeth, Luke, and Grover. Here’s the actress who plays young Thalia. I can’t find a good shot from the movie.
As a result of Thalia’s bravery, instead of dying, she’s transformed into a tree. The tree provides a magic barrier to protect Camp Half Blood. The plot of “Sea of Monsters” is that this tree is poisoned, so not only is Camp Half Blood vulnerable to monsters, but Thalia is dying. In order to save Thalia, the Golden Fleece must be recovered.
Annabeth, daughter of Athena, is the one who realizes the golden fleece is what is needed to save Thalia. The daughter of the goddess of wisdom, Annabeth is the smart one. Her role as the courageous, brilliant best friend of the hero, Percy, is similar to Hermione’s role in the Harry Potter series.
A third strong female is Clarisse, daughter of Ares, the god of war. Clarisse is ambitious and competitive.
For these three characters, I encourage you to take your kids to this movie, though I wouldn’t take a kid under 6. But, I don’t want to mislead you. “Sea of Monsters” is Percy’s movie. He is the hero. The quest of recovering the golden fleece is actually assigned to Clarisse, but when she can’t pull it off, guess who steps in to save the world? The way Percy takes over Clarisse’s quest really annoyed me in the book. It annoyed me slightly less in the movie, because the way this is presented, instead of it being all about Percy, it’s more like Clarisse realizes she needs to work with others. It’s great to see Clarisse be the one to place the fleece on the tree; her important action restores Thalia to life.
Kids watching “Sea of Monsters” not only get to see one girl helping another, but the whole movie is driven by Annabeth’s friendship for Thalia. “Sea of Monsters” is one of the very few this year to pass the Magowan Test for Gender Bias in Children’s movies. The Magowan Test is inspired by the Bechdel test. The criteria is (1) At least two females who are friends (2) go on an adventure (3) and don’t wear revealing clothing.
This movie is kind of cheesy. I don’t know why the special effects look so fake as opposed to the Harry Potter movies or the Lord of the Rings movies. Also, while the books are really funny, and the pacing is perfect, the humor doesn’t work in the movie. Scenes that are supposed to make you laugh are just goofy. That said, if I had to pick one movie to take kids to this summer, “Sea of Monsters” would be it.
Reel Girl rates “Sea of Monsters” ***H***
Boo you all! The movie was freat and your insults that the movie is better than the book and all this about how Clarisse is better in the movie is terrible! Clarisse is meant to be a tough strong girl who is kind of almost enemies with percy. And I thought the humor was great in the moie!! The whole “what are you doing? Don’t stand on my roof” part was hysterical! I mean some of te parts cold of been more accurate, but it was great!
Is the budget the problem? Whats the difference than HP or LOR I wonder?
You make a great point. I think that’s it. The humor doesn’t work with 16 year olds. Why did they make them older?
I have not read Heroes of Olympus but my daughter is obsesses. She loves Piper. Mark of Athena she said is great, too. Check out this blog, do a search for Riordan. I’ve written some posts about the books and cover art.
He takes over Annabeth’s quest in a later book, too. Not officially, he just starts giving people orders and ignoring hers. Drove me batty, it sends such a bad message about it being ok to ignore a woman’s authority.
Yes, you have made great comments on this. Clarisse comes off MUCH better in the movie than in the book. In the book she is just awful. In the book, she really grows, goes through a transition, is not demonized. That said, she is still annoying and HER QUEST GETS TAKEN OVER.
Hello! First-time poster here! 🙂
I think that part of the reason that the humour hasn’t worked as well in the “Percy Jackson” movies as in the books is the aging-up of the characters. In the books, Percy and Annabeth at least are supposed to be 12/13ish during SoM, IIRC. The goofy humour works better with tweens.
Have you read Riordan’s follow-up series to PJ, “Heroes of Olympus”? In the most recent book, Annabeth really took the lead, both leading the group of demigods and having a quest of her own assigned by Athena. HoO books are fantastically racially diverse and feature 3 cool and complex female leads (Annabeth, Piper and Hazel). I’m a huge admirer of his work (just wish the movies had a better sfx budget and writers who stuck more closely to the stories).