Based on the first of a series of best selling novels, PERCY JACKSON & THE OLYMPIANS: THE LIGHTNING THIEF
is set in a modern world where the twelve gods of Mount Olympus (perched 600 stories above the planet on New York's landmark Empire State Building) are alive and are creating a new race of young mythological heroes who are demigods-- half mortal, half god. Percy, the teenage son of Poseidon, is suspected by Zeus of stealing his lightning bolt, the universe's most powerful weapon. To prove his innocence and avoid a devastating war among the gods, Percy embarks on a transcontinental odyssey to find the real thief. The film's score was composed by Christophe Beck
who won an Emmy for his work on Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Beck has scored numerous films including The Pink Panther, Bring It On, I Love You Beth Cooper, American Wedding, Under the Tuscan Sun, School for Scoundrels, License to Wed, Fred Claus, Charlie Bartlett, Drillbit Taylor and others. Directed by Chris Columbus and Starring Logan Lerman, Brandon T. Jackson, Alexandra Daddario, Sean Bean, Pierce Brosnan, Steve Coogan, Rosario Dawson, Catherine Keener, Kevin McKidd, Joe Pantoliano, Uma Thurman, and Ray Winstone.
The similarity between the Harry Potter series of fantasy novels for young adolescents and the Percy Jackson series of fantasy novels for young adolescents is reinforced by the choice of Chris Columbus, who directed the first two Harry Potter movies, to direct the first Percy Jackson movie, Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. Columbus' choice of Christophe Beck as the film's composer also seems appropriate, since Beck cut his teeth writing music for the TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer (winning an Emmy in the process) and has gone on to a series of often youth-oriented Hollywood comedies. Beck brings to bear the full resources of the A-list of Hollywood orchestral musicians here, and they play a highly conventional big orchestral score to accompany the story of a teenager contending with the gods of Mount Olympus. Beck likes to have the many horns carry his alternately heroic and wistful melodies, while the massed strings provide rhythmic underpinning. It's not hard to tell what sorts of activities the musical cues accompany, as titles like "The Fury" indicate that feats of derring-do are being enacted on the big screen while Beck's galloping music fills the theater. He reserves his big main theme, appropriately enough, for a cue called "Hollywood." Indeed, this is Hollywood 101, nothing that hasn't been heard before, just as the film is strongly suggestive of similar sorts of entertainment that have sopped up lots of money from multiplexes in recent years. But it is effectively done all the same. -- All Music Guide, William Ruhlmann, February 16, 2010