Ridge Report Writing and Photography Contest

This year, you can submit a short story, poetry piece, and/or photography connecting to one of three possible themes. Your options are "Hush", "Bang", and "Click". Be as creative as you want!

Entries will be accepted starting Monday May 1st 2017

The deadline for entering is Friday May 20th 2017

First place winners in each category (short story, photography, and poetry) will have their entry published on the Ridge Report website and will be awarded a prize.

Click on each category to submit and know about the rules and requirements.

Short Story

Friday, January 10, 2014

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters Sinks in Failure

Despite critical failure for their first film, 20th Century Fox has produced a sequel for Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. Also despite critical failure of the first movie, fans were more than willing to give this movie a chance, even getting genuinely excited. Did Sea of Monsters live up to the hype and succeed where its predecessor failed, or is it just a sign for Fox to give up this pointless franchise.

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters continues of  the story of teenage demigod Percy Jackson. In his new adventure, Percy finds that his enemy, Luke, had poisoned the magical tree which creates a magical boundary protecting the demigod training camp, Camp Half-Blood. To save his now defenseless home, Percy and his friends must voyage through Sea of Monsters (known to mortals as the Bermuda Triangle) to retrieve the Golden Fleece, the only thing that can heal the tree.

As the title indicates, there is a lot of monsters in this movie. These lead to a lot of action scenes, as the protagonists struggle to overcome all obstacles in a location filled with foes. While Sea of Monsters is pretty action packed, it doesn't lead a lot of story. There is the main plot and a small storyline about family issues, but other than that, not much is offered. The characters are 1-dimensional and the film fails to leave a good, or even large impression, just joining the ranks of forgettable movies. Maybe to mask the weakness of the story, the movie uses a lot of CGI to make a pretty film. However, the excess is its downfall and every monster looks as if it were created from a computer, rather than creating a convincing spectacle.

While Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters is a weak film, it does have similar amount of quality as the first film (that's not a lot), but very different styles. That can be understood, as each picture has a different director. The two movies feel very different in terms of tone ad darkness. The first film is a little darker and slightly more emotional, while the second is bright, colorful, and just a simple adventure movie. The characters themselves also experience changes. Take the demigod Annabeth Chase for example. In the first film, she was a fierce, powerful, and experienced warrior, who rarely loses. In the sequel, she has been toned down to a warmer, gentler, weaker character, who seems to be taken down multiple times against opponents. Also changed are small things, like the title, from the mouthful of Percy Jackson and the Olympians to the simple Percy Jackson. The drastic changes are however for the better. Sea of Monsters is closer to the book, funnier, and tried to keep the franchise alive, though used a lot of influence from the Harry Potter series to do this, which lead to further critical failure.

All in all, Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters is a time passer, and will keep you entertained, but is weak in storytelling, characters, and making itself a big film. It is an improvement over Lightning Thief for the fans, but still not doing the justice the books deserve. The movie strives to make itself the next Harry Potter and fails in doing so and because of it. Perhaps Fox should consider dropping the series, and leave the remaining books unadapted. Or they could keep the franchise alive with a reboot. No matter what, this film failed to save the (current) series and left an unnoticeable mark upon movie history.

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