Tag Archives: films

Film: James Bond

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mon 5thThis month the newest James Bond film, Spectre, comes out. In preparation for this my father and I, being huge James Bond fans, basically took to a massive marathon of all the films, watching one film a night for quite a few nights…

Obviously, I wanted to recommend James Bond to you, so let’s get on with it…

Spanning over 50 years, the James Bond films have been in theatres since 1962 with the release of Dr No. The newest film, Spectre, will be the 25th film in the collection. Over these years, we have seen many different eras, different fashions, different styles and six different actors try their hand at playing the infamous James Bond himself.

Who is James Bond? ‘He is a fictional character created by novelist Ian Fleming in 1953. Bond is a British Secret agent working for MI6 who also answers by his codename 007’. (Click here for more information).

Sean Connery: Dr. No (1962), From Russia with Love (1963), Goldfinger (1964), Thunderball (1965), You Only Live Twice (1967), Diamonds Are Forever (1971). Connery began it all as the charming and sophisticated womanizer and spy. His era, largely in the 60s, shows off the romantic cars and casual wear of the time.

George Lazenby: On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969). Lazenby’s Bond was only captured in the one film but what a good film it is. Showing a more athletic Bond, perhaps more appropriate for the work of a spy, Lazenby continues to showcase the classic charm of the character but also a more romantic side as his Bond falls in love and even gets married.

Roger Moore: Live and Let Die (1973), The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), Moonraker (1979), For Your Eyes Only (1981),2BbimGp Octopussy (1983), A View to a Kill (1985). Having the most films, Moore is classic James Bond in a nutshell. His Bond is just as classy as the rest but with even more charm and perhaps some added cheek. Roger Moore’s era sees a more casual and humorous era of Bond, while also showing off 70s gaudy fashion and style.

Timothy Dalton: The Living Daylights (1987), Licence to Kill (1989). Dalton’s Bond brings a more thoughtful undertone to Bond that concentrates on the seriousness of being a MI6 agent with a licence to kill. Dalton’s Bond is perhaps the most emotional of them all making his films all the more spectacular.

Pierce Brosnan: GoldenEye (1995), Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), The World is Not Enough (1999), Die Another Day (2002). Bringing Bond into the 90s is Brosnan, perhaps the most passionate Bond. These films show the transition between the classic Bond films into the more modern and fast paced films of the 21st Century. Harbouring all of the cheesiness and action of which the 90s are known for, these films are really set in their era, but are loved all the more for it.

Daniel Craig: Casino Royale (2006), Quantum of Solace (2008), Skyfall (2012), Spectre (2015). Our current Bond, Daniel Craig, is perhaps our most powerful yet. With more action than ever before these films are getting better and better. A special mention for Skyfall: the story is perhaps my favourite of all the Bond films.

Whether you start from the beginning, or join James Bond with the release of Spectre, I truly recommend them all. It is quintessentially British and so classic; a really enjoyable thing to watch and be a part of.

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Disclaimer – I do not own the above images, they are from: http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/prints-multiples/everything-or-nothing-50-years-of-5614287-details.aspx and http://www.heyuguys.com/007-heaven-bonded-by-a-fantasy-photo-shoot/fifty-years-of-james-bond
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Film: Mr Holmes

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mr_holmes_ver2_xlgA friend of mine recently invited me to see Mr Holmes at a local cinema and as much that is what I’m recommending today.

I love everything Sherlock Holmes, especially the modern adaptations of the books such as the BBC series Sherlock starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman, the two films starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law and lastly, the American series, Elementary, starring Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu. From that I figured, I had to watch this new adaptation starring Ian McKellen.

‘The story is set in 1947, following a long-retired Holmes living in a Sussex village with his housekeeper and [her] rising detective son. But then he finds himself haunted by an unsolved 30-year old case. Holmes memory isn’t what it used to be, so he only remembers fragments of the case: a confrontation with an angry husband, [and] a secret bond with his beautiful but unstable wife.’ (IMDB)

This magical story sees Mr Holmes in his self-made isolation from the world as he lives his old age. Sherlock is suffering with his aging, as his brain doesn’t work how it used to; he can’t remember his old cases as much. The film sees Sherlock go over his one unfinished case with the help of young Roger, the housekeeper’s son. While Roger helps Sherlock with the case, Sherlock teaches Roger the art of bee-keeping, something that Sherlock Holmes, in his legacy, enjoys. This shows an amazing relationship grow between the two, but not everything is as perfect as it seems for Mrs. Munro, the housekeeper, who struggles to look after a stubborn old man while ensuring her child is safe from harm. She eventually considers leaving Mr Holmes to work in another household.

I really enjoyed the film, it was very simple in its concept and the film isn’t particularly punchy (like many of the newer adaptations) but it offers a chance for the current generation to see Sherlock in a different way; it is very unique and interesting. There wasn’t a large cast and most of the film only focuses on Sherlock, Roger and Mrs. Munro but this just seemed to add to the magic of it all.

I truly recommend this film, if you haven’t seen it, even if you don’t know much about Sherlock Holmes. (However, this is the only modern version that sees very little of Holmes’ sidekick Dr. John Watson).

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Disclaimer – I do not own the above image, it is from: http://www.screenrelish.com/2015/06/01/sir-ian-mckellens-mr-holmes-steps-out-of-the-shadows-for-new-poster/

YouTube: Wayne Goss

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5b7820c87294dfafdaba13cb9ac37246Wayne Goss, known as GossMakeupArtist on YouTube, is a professional make-up artist. He posts a video about every three days on his two channels all about make-up techniques and products. On his second channel, GossMakeupChat, he continues to review products and display techniques while also providing personal anecdotes, opinions and general chats on TV shows, films and music.

This is the ‘about’ summary on his main channel so that you can understand a little more of what he does there: ‘Love makeup? Want to improve your makeup skills? Interested in becoming a makeup artist? maxresdefaultOr just want honest reviews on the brands you most love. Then welcome to my channel. With 15 years makeup experience I want to share with you everything I’ve learned. By breaking things down into simple, easy manageable segments, even the most complicated looks become easy’.

There is little more to say, but that I think that his videos are wonderful; Wayne is so down-to-earth and so honest. Additionally, his knowledge is so great and his videos give a small insight into the make-up industry. Please take a look at the following videos:

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Disclaimer – I do not own the above photos, they are from: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/474355773225222203/ and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qat4yH09AIg

Film: The Princess Diaries

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jhjfhToday, I’m recommending this film, The Princess Diaries, purely because it’s my favourite film. It may seem like a weird choice and I know this film won’t be everyone’s cup of tea but sometimes you don’t choose your favourite film; it chooses you.

I remember being given a VHS copy of The Princess Diaries as a birthday gift from one of my closest friends. I unwrapped it and put it to the side. I wasn’t particularly thrilled by a film that contained ‘real people’ as I was still of the age where the only things I watched were cartoons and animated films.

I don’t remember when I first watched the film, or what kept me glued to the TV when I finally did, but I do remember its incredible influence on me over my childhood. The film has once again come to my attention, hence triggering this post, as for Christmas I finally received a DVD copy of it as a gift, something I had been asking for, for a while. It was my watching it after several years of having not done so that reaffirmed my love for it.

Right from the beginning of the film, it has an incredible soundtrack, each song fitting the film perfectly. The atmosphere is wonderful, and the narrative, two things that make the film appropriate for audiences of all ages. The characters, as they usually are, are so endearing and warm enhancing the narrative. The film is also host to a wonderful cast of actors including Julie Andrews and Anne Hathaway.

By this point, I should probably tell you the narrative. Simply because they do it so much better than me, here is the imdb summary; ‘Mia Thermopolis is the average teenager – sweet, a little geeky and pretty much invisible to everyone with the exception of her mother, best friend Lilly and Lilly’s older brother Michael. Making it through high school without throwing up is a challenge in itself for Mia, so it doesn’t come as welcome news when her estranged grandmother shows up out of the blue and calmly informs her that she is in fact the heir to the throne of a European country called Genovia. Suddenly Mia’s life is throwPrincess-Diaries-Annen into complete overload. She’s being taught about scarves, waves and pears in order to become a perfect princess, she gets a makeover and a tough looking yet sweet bodyguard/limo driver called Joe. Things get out of hand when the media gets a hold of the story and suddenly Mia is thrust into the spotlight in both the newspapers and in school. On top of all that Mia has a choice to make. She must decide by Genovia’s Independence Day Ball whether she longs to relinquish her claim on the throne or to become the princess and heir her father and grandmother want her to be’.

As I recently re-watched The Princess Diaries, I found that it’s influence in my childhood was rather larger than I had formally imagined. Whatever imaginative game I played with my friends, I would name my character Mia, since the main character’s nickname is Mia (short for Amelia). I was also obsessed with her bedroom, in a refurbished firehouse, in which she had a spiral staircase leading up to a hatch in the ceiling into another ‘secret’ room where she could hide out. The character’s call it ‘The Tower’ and I wanted a Tower of my own, I still do to be honest.

I genuinely love this film, and of course hope that if my recommendation pushes you to watch The Princess Diaries that you will like it too.

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Disclaimer – I do not own any pictures in this blog, they are from: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0247638/ and http://www.sunsetrising.net/2014/07/06/overlooked-on-netflix-the-princess-diaries-i-ii/.

Books: 5 Random books

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For today’s book recommendation I, once again, grabbed five random books from my bookcase…

9781906772352.225x225-75Number One

James Bond: Goldeneye by John Gardner

I’m a fan of James Bond. I love the whole atmosphere around it, I love its concept and I love its ability to engage anyone. I picked up this book because of all of this and although I haven’t yet read it, I’m sure it’ll be brilliant even if it is not written by the original author, Ian Fleming, who of course was the genius behind it all. Gardner has written fifteen Bond novels based on the script of the films. I can’t wait to read this one and all of the others!39-clues-cover

Number Two

The Maze of Bones – Book one of the 39 Clues series by Rick Riordan.

I absolutely loved this book when I read it, which I admit was a long while ago. The story is about Amy and Dan Cahill who after a relative’s death find a whole hidden world unravelling before them. They need to go around the world hunting for the 39 clues to find out exactly how powerful their family is. I bought this book not realising that it was part of an entire 10 book series and thus I got to the end of reading it only to find out I was being left on a cliff hanger. I finally bought the 2nd and 3rd books but I haven’t read them since I’m waiting until I have the entire series to read the first again and to continue the rest of the story. I’m sure I’ll enjoy the entire story when I finally read it.

In addition, this book series runs alongside a trading card game. It always confused me but I thought it was very cbooks_11ool. Perhaps if you are intrigued and purchase the series you’ll manage to understand it better than me, since trading cards were never my strong suit when it moved from collecting into playing.

Number Three

VIII by H. M. Castor.

‘Destined for GREATNESS… tormented by DEMONS.’

Another interesting book that I have not read and yet I believe will be good and quite interesting. I found this book in Aldi, it was £1.99, and I thought it looked good because I‘ve been studying Henry VIII and the Tudor period in my History A-level work. Since I can’t describe the book I’ll insert the blurb: ‘VIII is the story of Hal: a young, handsome, gifted warrior, who believes he has been chosen to lead his people. But he is plagued by the ghosts of his family’s violent past and, once he rises to power, he turns to murder and rapacious cruelty. He is Henry VIII.’13035

Number Four

Bleach by Tite Kubo (Volume 1)

About six years ago I was obsessed with the anime Bleach. I was introduced to it through friends who were equally obsessed and we all watched the episodes on YouTube. Soon enough we found other things to be obsessed with and I fell out of love with anime in general. But I still appreciate manga, the print version of anime. I enjoyed reading the Bleach manga, although I’ve only ever read or owned volume 1 and volume 4. I will try to quote the blurb here: ‘Ichigo Kurosaki has always been able to see ghosts, but this ability doesn’t change his life nearly as much as his close encounter with Rukia Kuchiki, a Soul Reaper and member of the mysterious Soul Society. While fighting a Hollow, an evil spirit that preys on humans who display psychic energy, Rukia attempts to lend Ichigo some of her powers so that he can save his family; but much to her surprise, Ichigo absorbs every last drop of her energy. Now a full-fledged Soul Reaper himself, Ichigo quickly learns that the world he inhabits is one full of dangerous spirits and, along with Rukia-who is slowly regaining her powers-it’s Ichigo’s job to protect the innocent from Hollows and help the spirits themselves BuffyNovelColl1find peace.’

Number Five

Buffy the Vampire Slayer by John Vorkholt, Arthur Byron Cover and Alice Henderson.

Stories – Coyote Moon, Night of the Living Rerun and Portal Through Time.

‘In every generation, there is a chosen one. A slayer destined to protect the human race. She alone must fight the demons of hell. She alone must risk her life to stop the spread of evil. Buffy is the chosen one.’

We all know Buffy the Vampire Slayer is my favourite TV Show (or you should if you’ve been reading my blogs long enough) and so it was only natural that I would purchase this series of three BtVS novels. Each book has three stories within written by three different people. I think this first book is my favourite and I absolutely love the stories and of course I love the further development of my favourite characters. My only problem is that I wish these stories were made into episodes of the programme too.

The blurb for each story is: ‘In Coyote Moon, a typical night at the carnival becomes deadly as shape-shifters turn the amusement park into their own house of horrors. Buffy starts having past-life nightmares in Night of the Living Rerun, and must face her historic counterpart before the events of the past repeat in the present. In Portal through Time, Slayers over the centuries are in danger and Buffy must protect them in order to save her own life and legacy’.

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Disclaimer – I do not these pictures, they are from: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/goldeneye/id672157889?mt=11, http://buffy.wikia.com/wiki/Buffy_the_Vampire_Slayer_(novels), http://www.booktrailersforreaders.com/The+39+Clues+Maze+of+Bones, http://murrayhill.wikispaces.com/Read_Review, http://neilspencephotography.com/book-covers.html.

Book: The Dinosaur who Pooped…

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Dino Today I’m recommending The Dinosaur That Pooped Christmas and The Dinosaur That Pooped a Planet. Okay, yes… these are kid’s books so it’s a bit of Poopa silly recommendation but I think these books are really good! Perhaps I’m biased because the writers are half of McFly and a third of McBusted and therefore from my favourite bands, but I absolutely love Tom Fletcher and Dougie Poynter and I think that they love kids so much in their own right that they can produce a perfect book for children.

Last month signalled the release the third book in the series ‘The Dinosaur That Pooped the Past’ and I cannot wait to buy that. All three books contain clever rhymes, interesting storylines and well, lots of poop and when you’re a kid you want someone or something to just joke about poop. It may seem silly and it may seem unpleasant but it’s something completely natural and funny to a child.

And hey, if you’re a lot older like me and want something to make you laugh, or perhaps you like Tom Fletcher and Dougie Poynter, you may just enjoy it too!

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Films: Charlie’s Angels

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Charlie’s Angels: Original and Full Throttle

Last night, I watched Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle. I planned to watch it for about half an hour and then go to bed, leaving the rest for the following day. But alas, I got so into the film I couldn’t stop it.

charliesangelsdvdcoverDespite the fact that this film is a sequel, it can be watched pretty much as a stand-alone film as long as you understand the nature of Charlie’s Angels and the friendship that the characters have. I, having not entirely realised that the film was a sequel until I had already committed to watching it, watched it out of order. But I have always had knowledge of Charlie’s Angels and although, not being able to recall what happened in the films prior to this re-watching, used to watch them when I was younger.  Fortunately, I have watched the first film since, in order to write a full recommendation.

Actors. The films have an absolutely incredible cast. Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Lucy Liu, Bernie Mac, Crispin Glover, Bill Murray, Tim Curry, Sam Rockwell, Sean Whalen, Justin Theroux, Shia LaBeouf, Matt LeBlanc, John Cleese and Luke Wilson are but a few.

These films make a very obvious use of sex appeal, so much so the Full Throttle DVD case itself comments on it. This may not be for everyone; after all it wasn’t what attracted me to watching the film but if you overlook that there is so much more to these films to praise them for.

Simply, they are great feel good films; very cheesy but in a way where it uses humour to complement their action and adventure elements. But less simply, Charlie’s Angels promotes strong female characters, as the protagonists are strong female characters; Dylan, Alex and Natalie are the Angels, they need to be strong and skilful physically to win against their opponents but they’re also mentally strong. What’s better is that, in relation to themselves their male opponents are presented as kind of stupid, and their female opponents are extremely intelligent, this applies more so to Full Throttle. This is good because it’s rare that female protagonists are so powerful and even rarer that the females are made to appear more erudite than their male counterparts.  Even now, eleven years since Full Throttle was released, the film industry struggles to fully explore strong female characters. In addition to this, the films promote the importance of friendship and despite parts of the films being, as stated earlier, cheesy, this topic is approached in an inspiring manner by allowing Natalie and Alex’s support of Dylan to be a guiding force in giving Dylan her confidence especially in the second film.

If at first you don’t succeed… do not underestimate the power of Plan B. Throughout Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, different groups of characters, from the Angels to their enemies, refer to their Plan B after their assumed Plan A fell through. I think this has been intentionally overdone to really push the old adage and to show that even for the Angels things don’t necessarily work out first time, but even if the first attempt fails, it’s important that you continue.

The characters of Natalie, Alex and Dylan are so well created too; they complement each other so soundly, being similar enough to hold a good relationship yet being different enough to keep their relationship strong and… choreographically, the fight scenes enhance each characters idiosyncrasies perfectly making these scenes a beauty to behold.

Music in these films is very important in keeping the atmosphere appropriately in line with the story and music is one of the reasons why I think Charlie’s Angels is brilliant. There is just great music all the way through both films. The main soundtrack of Full Throttle is Pink’s Feel Good Time and it fits perfectly. The song itself is brilliant and the video is done so well too. I’ll insert the video here;

And lastly, it wouldn’t be a proper TweetingRawr film recommendation without a comment on make-up and clothes… Rapidly changing throughout the films; the Angel’s makeup and wardrobe is so phenomenally finely done making each of them look so beautiful.

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Disclaimer – I do not own the poster, it is from: http://www.currentfilm.com/dvdreviews2/charliesangelsdvd.html