PERCY JACKSON: SEA OF MONSTERS – REVIEW

Starring: Logan Lerman, Brandon T. Jackson, Stanley Tucci
Director: Thor Freudenthal
Running Time: 106 minutes

Before I go into this one I want to point out that I have never read the Percy Jackson books and from what I hear, there are a lot of things missing from the first film Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief, as well as its sequel. That being said, I won’t focus too hard on what is missing and discuss what I actually saw!

Now, one of my hang ups about the first film that was reiterated in the sequel was the lack of skill from the demigods. Percy and his friends, although living at Camp Half-Blood and supposedly spending all their time training for some impending epic battle, when it comes down to it, don’t seem to do anything particularly special. This isn’t a criticism more than just a disappointment that considering these children are spawn of legendary deities, their perks from this are limited. Once again, I haven’t read the books so if they have “powers” of which I am unaware, feel free to let me know. I just feel that Percy’s powers other than obvious healing from water, being able to breathe under it and, what was impressive, ride it, seem a bit limited.

The story itself is fine. Demigod sent on a quest to get the Golden Fleece to save his home from imminent destruction. Cool, I can dig that. What I can’t dig is why the children have to do these epic trials and not the adults who are supposedly there to protect them. Okay, so he has to fulfil a prophecy, so what? Take some responsibility man. Demigods are for life, not just for Christmas.

Funny one liners, two Cyclops, a few satyrs, a centaur and a golden fleece are always going to be a fun night out at the cinema. I didn’t expect too much and that’s exactly what I got, not too much but for once, im not particularly complaining about it. Percy’s personal battles as to whether he is good enough is a good central theme and is further explored but only at the end of the film, ultimately making you want to see the next film. When we will receive this is as yet unknown but as it is a book, you can always find out if you don’t know already. The special effects of the film are good, the script’s a bit bland when they’re not making a joke but as it isn’t too long a film, you don’t get bored of it too quickly.

A little guilty pleasure from this one, so take some kids and grab some popcorn. Its really just a bit of fun, nothing heavy 🙂

PACIFIC RIM – REVIEW

Pacific Rim
Pacific Rim

When the trailer and poster for Pacific Rim was first revealed, the immediate thought was: Transformers rip off. The big metal monster bit had been done and there wasn’t much excitement to indulge in it again after the almost 3 hour catastrophe that was Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon. Even less excited that now, said big metal monsters were coming out of the water; cue Battleship plot.

Basically, the film wasn’t setting up well especially with a cast of C list actors (with the exception of B and A listers Idris Elba and Ron Pearlman respectively) gracing the cast list and even that bloke from Eastenders!

However…

Pacific Rim did not live up to its apparent inevitable failure but to that of success. Not a huge success but a success none the less. By the time the end credits had begun to role, there was a need for more. Not to say that there was anything left unfinished but there was still a sense of excitement for more to come as the fight scenes were dramatic and intense and gave an accurate sense of how colossal these machines are as well as the enemies they have to face. There was a good pace to the film as there are no pauses where the “where are they going with this?” question starts to pop up or you begin to questions how long you’ve been watching it! As mentioned, the fight scenes between monster and machine were extraordinarily executed though you do wonder why if there are three machines and one monster, why not tag team them? While on the subject of what is not so great about the film, can we all take a moment to discuss the questionable accents of Charlie Hunnam and Rob Kazinsky. For once, Idris Elba decided to stay on this side of the pond with his vocal performance but the other two were clearly lost in translation.

Despite the initial hang ups going into the movie, Pacific Rim chalked up to be a good watch. The hefty $180 million dollar budget did not go to waste as the Kaiju and Jaeger were as believable as the Transformers had been when Michael Bay first brought them to our screens. A far better release than Battleship that lacked any form of substance (if not only in Rihanna’s performance), Pacific Rim is an enjoyable action monster flick that delivers.

MONSTERS UNIVERSITY – REVIEW

With the success of Monsters Inc and the following it indued in 2001, a sequel was inevitable. However, the excitement for a sequel was initially tainted by the fact that the sequel was in fact a prequel. There was to be no follow up to Mike and Cynthia’s romance and most importantly, no Boo. The adorable little girl that blessed our hearts was never to be seen again.

Moving on from that disappointment (on my part anyway) Monsters University allowed us to see how Mike and Sully form their lifelong friendship with an educational establishment as the back drop that quite frankly isnt really needed.

Im afraid MU has fallen into the ‘we must make a sequel because of previous success but haven’t exactly executed it correctly’ trap. The gags are minimal, the storyline overplayed for an apparent kids film and the pace way too slow.

The storyline, though good was too deep for children and didn’t have the same innocence as Monsters Inc. and at times threatened to make you hate the star of the show.

All in all, I’m afraid i found Monsters University a bit of a let down considering the gold that Pixar is famous for delivering. Lets hope that Finding Dory is a better feat.