Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 48 Old 07-01-2010, 12:13 PM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=179451&d=1278011262
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373647

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

91






Studio and Year: 20th Century Fox - 2010
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 118 minutes
Genre: Fantasy/Adventure

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, English/French/Spanish/Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Portuguese
Starring: Logan Lerman, Brandon T. Jackson, Alexandra Daddario, Sean Bean, Pierce Brosnan, Kevin McKidd, Catherine Keener, Joe Pantoliano, Uma Thurman, Rosario Dawson, Steve Koogan
Directed by: Christopher Columbus
Music by: Christophe Beck
Written by: Craig Titley based on the book by Rick Riordan
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: June 29, 2010







"Half human. Half god. All hero!"



Film Synopsis:

Based on the popular book series by Rick Riordan, the film follows trouble-prone Percy Jackson who finds himself having problems in high school but that's the least of his challenge. It's the 21st century, but the gods of Mount Olympus have walked out of the pages of his Greek mythology texts and into his life, and they're not happy - Zeus' lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect. Learning he is the son of Poseidon, the young teen finds himself caught between angry and battling gods, and embarks on a cross-country adventure to catch the true lightning thief and unravel a mystery more powerful than the gods themselves.



My Take:

This film is an adaptation based upon the first book in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, The Lightning thief. In the story Percy is introduced as a seemingly typical teenager that struggles a bit in school (due to dyslexia) and at home with a deadbeat stepfather that isn't nice to him or his mother Sally. It is obvious to Percy that he is somehow different but he sees it as a sort of disadvantage/handicap that he can't specifically ascribe to. Things come into focus while Percy is on a class trip to a museum in the city. During a tour of the Greek Mythology wing Percy is attacked by a Fury, a mythical flying creature that demands he return Zeus' lightning bolt. The creature is driven off with the help of Percy's best friend Grover and wheelchair bound teacher Mr. Brunner. It is at this point that Percy learns that he is a demigod, the fruits of a union between a Greek god and a human. He learns that Zeus' master lightning bolt has been stolen and that he is the suspected thief. Grover reveals that he is not only Percy's best friend but is in fact a satyr (part human part goat) in disguise that is his assigned protector. Mr. Brunner informs Percy that the only place he will be safe until the lightning bolt is recovered is Camp Half-Blood a secret training facility for demigods. They make their way to the camp but not before facing a few challenges, the biggest of which involves an encounter with a large and rather nasty Minotaur (mythical horned beast). It is imperative that the true thief be discovered and that the master lightning bolt is returned within 14 days or there will be a cataclysmic battle between the gods. The problem is that no one knows who the thief is. This is compounded by the disappearance of Percy's mother Sally who is later found to be the prisoner of the Greek god Hades, master of the underworld (hell), who seeks to exchange her for the lightning bolt. If Percy is to find the thief, save his mother, and return Zeus' lightning bolt before the deadline he will need to rely on his as yet untapped abilities as the son of Greek God Poseidon, and the assistance of protector/buddy Grover along with new found friend and demigod Annabeth, the daughter of Greek Goddess Athena.

My wife frequently tells me that I am a big kid especially when it comes to my fondness for fantasy themed films. Growing up I liked movies based or focused on Greek mythology. The original Clash of the titans remains a personal favorite. Prior to the release of this film I had never heard of Percy Jackson. He was born from writer Rick Riordan's need to come up with an original bedtime story for his son. Rick loves Greek mythology and had run out of existing material so at his son's insistence came up with Percy's adventures. Like the books this film is aimed at a fairly specific target audience however it can easily appeal to anyone that enjoys fantasy based adventure stories. I probably enjoyed it more than I should have but as noted earlier this stuff is right up my alley. The modern day spin works pretty well although its elementary nature is apparent. Those expecting a complex narrative, extravagant/graphically depicted battles or deeper themes will be disappointed. What you do get is a good baseline of primary characters and a host of decent secondary characters that support the story's elements. I think that the attempts at drama feel forced and the dialogue can be a little trite but things rarely descend to what I would describe as cheesy or corny. The action sequences are fun and there are varying levels of peril to keep things moving. Fox seems to have spared no expense on the production as there are lots of special effects and a decent array of well known actors that fill in smaller yet integral roles. I tend to like Chris Columbus' directorial style and this was no different. The film moves along quickly but the pacing isn't frenetic or hurried and the visuals and cinematography are engaging and purposeful. With this being based on the first book in the series there is obviously room for a sequel (s). I think this came off well enough to warrant consideration but who knows? Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The lightning thief probably won't satisfy diehard action/adventure fans but it held my interest for two hours and based upon the quality of it's high definition presentation I will more than likely revisit it again soon.



Parental Guide:

The rating is for action violence and peril, some scary images and suggestive material and mild language.






AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 94



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699


Video: 88


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The lightning thief comes to Blu-ray Disc from Fox featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 32 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.6 Mbps.

This is an excellent video presentation that that boasts image quality that is indicative of a newer release film coming to Blu-ray. Resolution is generally strong as images have crisp definition and lucid clarity. Objects onscreen appear dimensionally strong with exquisite rendering that discloses subtle minutia captured by the camera's lens during close ups. The level of sharpness fluctuated some however this is attributable the extensive CGI used and I never felt it adversely affected the quality of what I was seeing. The range of colors used appears vibrant with warm vivid hues and delineated textures that look great in high definition. Fleshtones are naturally rendered with warm accents that give them lifelike tonality. Blacks are inky and noise free with discernibly deep and variant shades that enhance the films many dark sequences. Contrast is elevated slightly which gives the image a dynamic quality that occasionally overdrives whites but rarely infringes upon fidelity. The deep shadows, gradational grays, delineated colors, and inky blacks looked terrific on my large screen. I didn't see any overt signs of video degrading artifacts or extraneous compression related noise.

I often hear from many enthusiasts who rate the quality of an action based movie soundtrack by the amount, level, and depth of the bass it produces. There are a select few titles that are considered to be the go to for reference quality bass. I suspect that after experiencing this lossless DTS-HD soundtrack there will be a new kid on the block as this presentation rocked, literally. I just love the film's opening moments which begin with a short barrage of cloud based thunder/lightning strikes that traverse the room and are accompanied by deep, authoritative bass. The following segment begins with Poseidon rising out of the ocean depths near a pier. He stands around 50 feet tall and as he exits the water his giant footsteps produce some of the most tactile low frequency effects I have ever felt in my room. This type of palpably rich and room shaking bass was the case throughout the film. Bass heads will have a new demonstration disc to show off the capabilities of their subwoofers. The response in my room during several sequences attained infrasonic depths that could easily be classified as skin tingling. The fight sequence with the giant dragon creature in the Parthenon replica in Tennessee is a blitzkrieg of swirling effects and rafter raising LFE. This soundtrack will not only test your subwoofer's ability to handle sub hertz content but how well it handles those frequencies at higher level SPLs because the LFE channel is mixed on the hot side.

In addition to the noteworthy bass response this is an aggressive sound design that makes extensive use of the entire surround platform. There is a wealth of discrete and ambient related effects that envelope and revolve around the listening position. It generates a sound field that is aurally stimulating as you are transported into the onscreen action. Christophe Beck's more traditional (orchestrated) music score is a perfect mate for the spirit of the film as it is often blended with action sequences and sounds superb. Dialogue is clearly rendered and variably distinctive. Occasionally I would have preferred that it be a bit more prominent within the mix but there was never an issue with intelligibility. This is an invigorating and dynamically potent surround mix that features high level detail, excellent directional correlation, and prodigious (but slightly overdriven) bass extension that is guaranteed to break your lease. If you have a system that you think is it up to the task, crank this one up to reference, but remember I won't be held responsible for any damage to your system



Bonus Features:


  • (HD) 10 deleted scenes

  • Secrets of the Gods - Interactive feature with trivia/info on the Greek Gods featured in the film

  • Discover your powers quiz

  • (HD) The book comes to life - 4 minute featurette with writer Rick Riordan

  • (HD) Inside Camp Half-Blood - 5 minute Behind the scenes featurette

  • (HD) On set with Brandon T. Jackson - 6 minute featurette

  • Composing for the Gods: A conversation with Christophe Beck - 3 minutes

  • (HD) Theatrical trailer

  • Bonus DVD of Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The lightning thief

  • Digital Copy Bonus Disc of Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The lightning thief




Final Thoughts:

Based on the novel by Rick Riordan Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The lightning thief is an enjoyable modern day spin on the Greek God mythos. Its elementary storyline and tame action elements may not appeal to diehard genre fans but its big budget production and well placed cast help make it a bit more fun. Speaking of fun, those that enjoy rip roaring surround sound are sure to get a jolt out of its lossless DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on Blu-ray which features prodigious levels of bass and room filling effects that make for great demonstration material. Add solid video quality along with an average bonus feature set, which includes a digital copy and DVD version of the film and this makes for a worthwhile rental that may just finds its way into your collection.









attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






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post #2 of 48 Old 07-01-2010, 12:18 PM
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I'm now interested in this just for the audio. Thanks for the review.
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post #3 of 48 Old 07-01-2010, 01:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tfoltz View Post

I'm now interested in this just for the audio. Thanks for the review.

Ditto!

Thanks for the great review, this is on my list!
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post #4 of 48 Old 07-01-2010, 01:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

My wife frequently tells me that I am a big kid especially when it comes to my fondness for fantasy themed films. Growing up I liked movies based or focused on Greek mythology. The original Clash of the titans remains a personal favorite.

Lol. My wife says the same thing about me. I'm also a huge fan of the original Clash (haven't seen the remake yet). With that said, my oldest son has read the Percy books. So when this came out in the theater we had to go. It wasn't that memorable to me then. Well we watched this at home last night and I found it much more enjoyable this time in my HT. Maybe it was just the awesome audio and thundering LFE that kept me smiling. Or maybe it was the look of enjoyment on my kids' faces that kept me smiling.

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post #5 of 48 Old 07-01-2010, 02:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waboman View Post

Lol. My wife says the same thing about me. I'm also a huge fan of the original Clash (haven't seen the remake yet). With that said, my oldest son has read the Percy books. So when this came out in the theater we had to go. It wasn't that memorable to me then. Well we watched this at home last night and I found it much more enjoyable this time in my HT. Maybe it was just the awesome audio and thundering LFE that kept me smiling. Or maybe it was the look of enjoyment on my kids' faces that kept me smiling.

Greetings,

Nice. Thanks for sharing Waboman.

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post #6 of 48 Old 07-01-2010, 06:54 PM
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Thanks king P , picked this puppy up street date... $16.99 @ at a Video game dive...along with The Crazies @ $16.99 and the Green Zone @ $17.99 ... I bought 3 flicks and got $5.00 off the most expensive...so Zone was $12.99 ... 49.00 bucks for 3 recent released flicks...I found a new home indeed...PM me if you wanna know where in Virginia ....and no there not hot or bootlegs .
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post #7 of 48 Old 07-02-2010, 08:25 AM
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my whole family loved this movie, and the opening sequence with Poseidon coming out of the water is a subwoofer workout if there ever was one. (needless to say, my sub setup was not up to the task, so i had to dial it back a bit).

it's a fun movie, and i'm always glad to see PG rated films do well.

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post #8 of 48 Old 07-02-2010, 11:19 AM
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Sounds like a winner, this one is going in the queue.

Thanks for the review Ralph!
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post #9 of 48 Old 07-02-2010, 06:04 PM
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Quick question - I've got three Samsung BD players in the house. I watched this movie tonight with my daughter, on a Samsung 1400 (latest firmware updates already on it).

Some sort of extra [movie] info kept popping up along the bottom portion of the movie every few minutes. Looked to be some sort of chapter view along a time line (showed a picture of the current scene along a time line). I could not figure how to disable this and eventually, I had to load up the DVD version. Was too annoying.

Any ideas on how to disable in the future? Tried a few things and did not see how enable/ disable this BD feature. Thanks.
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post #10 of 48 Old 07-02-2010, 08:06 PM
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Hmm, I just watched the opening 5 minutes at my usual -13 on the volume knob, but I wasn't that impressed. Did anyone find that they had to crank up the volume a little louder than other movies? Valkyrie played at -13 (the bomb shelter scene) has more impressive LFE. Any thoughts?

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post #11 of 48 Old 07-02-2010, 08:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terminal33 View Post

Hmm, I just watched the opening 5 minutes at my usual -13 on the volume knob, but I wasn't that impressed. Did anyone find that they had to crank up the volume a little louder than other movies? Valkyrie played at -13 (the bomb shelter scene) has more impressive LFE. Any thoughts?

Interesting. I actually bumped the volume down a bit with this one.

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post #12 of 48 Old 07-02-2010, 08:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waboman View Post

Interesting. I actually bumped the volume down a bit with this one.

As I continue to watch the movie, the LFE became more impressive. Percy's encounter with the minotaur in the woods, and the monster from the underworld shooting fireballs were pretty intense. I'll have to say that I agree with Ralph that the LFE is demo material, although the first 5 minutes weren't as great as I expected after reading his review. Overall, great LFE so far. (I'm only at the scene with Medusa.)

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post #13 of 48 Old 07-03-2010, 03:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terminal33 View Post

Hmm, I just watched the opening 5 minutes at my usual -13 on the volume knob, but I wasn't that impressed. Did anyone find that they had to crank up the volume a little louder than other movies? Valkyrie played at -13 (the bomb shelter scene) has more impressive LFE. Any thoughts?

Greetings,

The LFE in the opening segments I mentioned isn't the film's most active or intense. I referenced it because based upon its depth I had a pretty good idea what I was in for the rest of the way. I can't comment as to what you experienced in your room or with you particular equipment but I can tell you that each footstep by the giant Poseidon (in the opening) could easily be felt in every corner of my room (and at reference my entire house )

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post #14 of 48 Old 07-03-2010, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,

The LFE in the opening segments I mentioned isn't the film's most active or intense. I referenced it because based upon its depth I had a pretty good idea what I was in for the rest of the way. I can't comment as to what you experienced in your room or with you particular equipment but I can tell you that each footstep by the giant Poseidon (in the opening) could easily be felt in every corner of my room (and at reference my entire house )

Regards,

Hey Ralph, for some reason when I first read your review I interpreted the opening scenes to have the most LFE. But I can understand what you are saying about how those scenes indicate what's about to come up in the rest of the film. Yes the Poseidon footsteps were intense, but I have one Ultra 13 in a 7,000 cu ft room so there's no way I'll experience it the same way you do in your theater. (That's my jealous face.)

However the rest of the movie was indeed filled with massive amounts of LFE, just like you said. I was very impressed, especially with the frequency of those scenes that were so engaging. Some movies may have one or two scenes of intense LFE, but this one had multiple occasions. I rented this movie, but now I'm considering buying it.

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post #15 of 48 Old 07-04-2010, 06:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,

The LFE in the opening segments I mentioned isn't the film's most active or intense. I referenced it because based upon its depth I had a pretty good idea what I was in for the rest of the way. I can't comment as to what you experienced in your room or with you particular equipment but I can tell you that each footstep by the giant Poseidon (in the opening) could easily be felt in every corner of my room (and at reference my entire house )

Regards,

The LFE in this one was sensational. Deep and tight. The film itself I found a rent only. Could of been better.

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post #16 of 48 Old 07-04-2010, 07:20 PM
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Ralph,
I have been recommending this film to many of my friends. I recently purchased a Sub 25 and your assessment is dead on. LFE is thunderous but inserted appropriately in each scene in which it appears.
John

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post #17 of 48 Old 07-04-2010, 11:40 PM
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Ralph,

Great review. I also like the original Clash of the Titans.

Anyways...I just watched this movie on Blu-ray tonight a -4 below reference. The only part of your review I disagree with is the Audio score. I would have given this DTS-MA soundtrack a solid 100. This particular movie soundtrack is absolute insanity from beginning to end. I've seen a lot of great BD movies. Lots of different genre's. This is premium demo material, with an entertaining story to boot.

The LFE is off the scale. It's in the upper echelon of bass movies. And some fantastic surround detail. I didn't have any problems with dialogue reproduction with my Polk center channel. I still can't believe the extreme degree of room pressurization when
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Percy manipulated the water in the water towers to swirl around and attack Luke. Absolutely unreal.


And the opening thunder and Poseidon's footsteps you mentioned in your review were definitely fun, but that's just the tip of the ice burg. My Onkyo was hot when the movie was over. I turned it off and let it breath. haha

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post #18 of 48 Old 07-05-2010, 07:58 AM
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Guess I need to give this a rent. Sounds like some fun LFE to be had

Edit: Just read Ralphs audio review........I might have to go rent this right now!

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post #19 of 48 Old 07-05-2010, 09:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toe View Post

Guess I need to give this a rent. Sounds like some fun LFE to be had

Edit: Just read Ralphs audio review........I might have to go rent this right now!

You will enjoy the LFE Toe

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post #20 of 48 Old 07-06-2010, 11:03 AM
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This movie caught me off guard. I can admit im a big kid (well my wife also reminds me too) and I fell in love right off the bat.
I loved how they took Greek Myth and made it apply to the modern world.
Also the audio to be very well done. I loved the story also hope to see lots more.

While I have only see it 2 times total my kids have seen it much more then that.
Highly recommend here.
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post #21 of 48 Old 07-06-2010, 12:32 PM
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I watched this movie over the weekend and couldn't agree more with the review...
The sound quality is fantastic... On the picture side, there are also some worth demo scenes...

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post #22 of 48 Old 07-11-2010, 08:21 AM
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I liked the film and liked the soundtrack.

A nice surprise.

Good review.

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #23 of 48 Old 07-11-2010, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by thebland View Post

I liked the film and liked the soundtrack.

A nice surprise.

Good review.

Greetings,

A man of few words..thanks Jeff.


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post #24 of 48 Old 07-12-2010, 01:03 PM
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This is a great sci-fi mytho movie. Loved the special effects.

Definitely a collect!

Cheers
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post #25 of 48 Old 07-14-2010, 09:59 AM
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Ralph referenced Clash of the Titans. I'm assuredly older and my high water mark for RH and greek mythology was Jason and the Argonauts...still enjoy that film. PJ&O/LT was ok if you're in the right demo, but for me the humor fell flat, the acting was afternoon TV, other than the cameos, the soundtrack was fine, but not enough to really ge me involved. This one reminded me of the first Narnia with a slightly more adolescent mindset and I wasn't thrilled with that one either. It looks to me like the producers were hoping for another Harry Potter franchise, but I didn't see enough promotion to get the ball rolling (and unlike most, I don't feel HP movies are that much superior to this one). Didn't this one disappear after release? Anyway...meh...wish I had rented.

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post #26 of 48 Old 07-14-2010, 10:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Ralph referenced Clash of the Titans. I'm assuredly older and my high water mark for RH and greek mythology was Jason and the Argonauts...still enjoy that film. PJ&O/LT was ok if you're in the right demo, but for me the humor fell flat, the acting was afternoon TV, other than the cameos, the soundtrack was fine, but not enough to really ge me involved. This one reminded me of the first Narnia with a slightly more adolescent mindset and I wasn't thrilled with that one either. It looks to me like the producers were hoping for another Harry Potter franchise, but I didn't see enough promotion to get the ball rolling (and unlike most, I don't feel HP movies are that much superior to this one). Didn't this one disappear after release? Anyway...meh...wish I had rented.


Greetings,

Sorry this one didn't work for you Ron. I did actually suggest a rental first..


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post #27 of 48 Old 07-14-2010, 12:03 PM
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Greetings,

Sorry this one didn't work for you Ron. I did actually suggest a rental first..


Regards,

Yeah, I needed a movie and I was waiting for NF, so I took a chance.

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post #28 of 48 Old 07-14-2010, 09:37 PM
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It was a lot of fun. Thanks for turning us on to it. I liked Sean Bean as Zeus and Uma Thurman was a sexy, funny, modern Medusa. Alexandra Daddario is a real fox and it's nice to see a heroine that's taller than the hero. She could probably kick Percy's ass around the block. Sound was better than the picture on my system. I didn't need 3 copys of the same film. It's not a fun film to watch on your phone. We're all children when we enjoy stuff like this, The original "Clash of the Titans" was great. Judi Bowker was worth facing a Kraken for.
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post #29 of 48 Old 07-15-2010, 06:23 PM
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Haven't seen this on Bluray yet but did see it in theater and personally, I liked Percy Jackson more than Avatar.
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post #30 of 48 Old 07-27-2010, 10:10 AM
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This film had that summer blockbuster feel to it, which I really enjoyed. Fun to watch, and not at all serious. A fun twist on the Greek mythology theme. I admit that I'm a sucker for films like this too.

The acting was o.k. overall for the young cast. I didn't care for some of the teenage humor. It's just so unoriginal and corny. I thought about having my young kids watch this one, but I'm glad that my wife and I watched it first. Some of the scenes would have been much too intense for them, and dark. After finishing this one, it is definately meant for the young to mid teenage audience, or older.

PQ and SQ were both fantastic. Simply put, this is film has a few scenes that can have you saying wow!

Overall, a fun film.

PQ: 4.5 out of 5, SQ 4.5 out of 5, Film 3 out of 5

Dan
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