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Book Review: The Other Hand by Chris Cleave

29 Apr

“Once you have read it, you’ll want to tell everyone about it. When you do, please don’t tell them what happens either. The magic is in how it unfolds.” I’ve never agreed with the blurb of a book more. Chris Cleave’s quietly powerful novel manages to engross you from it’s first sentence. “Sometimes I wish I was a pound coin.” perhaps it’s these incredibly simplistic sentences that manage to captivate the reader. It enters your mind without any graces or claims to change your life yet Cleave’s grip on suffering and grief is so tight, it’ll captivate your mind and your heart.

The blurb on the back is deliberately vague as is my description of the book. Little Bee is released from a detention centre in London, the place she has come to after leaving her home of Nigeria. Sarah works as a magazine editor, she has a five year old son. Something dramatic has changed her life. The two have already met. That’s all I can divulge.
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Movie Review: The Hunger Games

29 Mar

The Hunger Games seems to have taken the world by storm. Suzanne Collins’s ‘young adult’ fiction series has sold hundreds of thousands of copies and has been translated in more than 26 languages. I ad previously done a post previewing the film after it garnered so much hype at the most recent VMAs. I must add here, as I’m a bit of a Harry Potter nerd that this is most certainly not stepping on Harry Potter turf yet and is not expected to.

The story follows Katniss Everdeen, a teenager who lives in Panem, a nation in a dystopian future where North America has been destroyed. Panem has been divided into twelve districts and an affluent Capitol. Our heroine, Katniss, hails from one of the poorer districts, District 12. Due to people in the past rebelling against the Captiol, The Hunger Games have been set up. These are games in which a boy and a girl between the ages of 12-18 must be chosen from each district to fight to the death. Katniss’s twelv year old sister gets chosen so Katniss decides to volunteer in order to save her sister.
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84th Oscar Predictions!

26 Feb

It’s that time of year again. The big night! Like I said in my last post my year begins tomorrow, when the Oscars are over and I’ve stopped looking back on the films of last year. Crazy, I know, but that’s just how much of a film lover I am. Here’s a video I put in my top ten list that I have been watching over and over. It’s great and reminds me of what a good year I’ve had. Hopefully you’ll feel the same too!


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Top Ten Films of 2011

23 Feb

It’s that time of year. The Oscars, and the awards season. Everyone looks back at their favourite films of the year. Maybe this is because I’m a mad film junkie, my year doesn’t begin until The Oscars are over because I’m looking over last year so much. Crazy, I know. Just thought I’d share this great video with you guys. It really reminds me of what a great year I’ve had and how I love cinema. Bring on 2012!


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Movie Review: The Descendants

29 Jan

After a seven year break, Alexander Payne is back with his latest offering which is a real Oscar frontrunner. It tackles some of the themes that we’ve previously seen in Payne’s work but certainly includes new material. It definitely goes along with his perfect track record.

Matt King (George Clooney) is a land baron in Hawaii. He’s supposedly in ‘paradise’ but life doesn’t seem to be very paradisiacal at the moment. His wife has just suffered from a boating accident and is in a serious coma. He’s now left to take care of his two daughters, and he’s the self confessed ‘back-up’ parent. While Ms. King is in the coma he finds out that she’s been having an affair.
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Movie Review: Coriolanus

21 Jan

Shakespeare adaptations in movies haven’t always worked out so greatly. Hamlet in 1990 with Glenn Close and Mel Gibson wasn’t so great. The Baz Luhrman Romeo and Juliet had potential but didn’t turn out to be a great film. There have been some great ones though. Take Kenneth Branagh’s brilliant rendition of Henry V, for example. Ralph Fiennes’s Coriolanus definitely fits into the great category.

Coriolanus is a tragedy written by Shakespeare sometime between 1605 to 1608. Caius Martius Coriolanus (Fiennes) despises the people of Rome. His extreme views cause riots to break out and panic is filed throughout the city. He is desperate to seek revenge on the city and his arch enemy Aufidius (Gerard Butler).
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Movie Review: The Artist

8 Jan

One thing has got everyone talking about this film (apart from all the awards buzz) it’s a black and white silent movie. Receiving a lot of attention at Cannes this year, and a Best Actor award, this has a lot going for it. Gimmick? I thought so back in May but further along I was desperate to see this and the silent thing is completely forgotten about altogether.

Michel Hazanavicius directs Jean Dujardin as George Valentin, a silent movie star who is all the rage in Hollywood 1927. He’s an A-lister but all of that is put in jeopardy when the talkies start to become big. He meets upcoming star Peppy Miller (Hazanavicius’ wife, Bérénice Bajo) along the way and falls in love. But with one star on the rise and one on the decline, what happens?
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Movie Review: The Ides of March

19 Dec

Finally I’ve seen this. I’ve been dying to and now I finally have. A political thriller with an all-star cast, an A-lister for the director and a cracking story all in time for Oscar season. It’s a recipe for success.

George Clooney directs, stars and adapts this adaptation of Beau Williamon’s 2008 play Farragut North, which was very well received. The story follows Stephen Meyers (Ryan Gosling) who is the Junior Campaign Manager for Mike Morris (George Clooney) who is a democratic presidential candidate. He is campaigning against fellow democratic candidate Ted Pullman. They’re both campaigning in Ohio and this is the crucial state to getting elected. That’s the backdrop for the story, as you can imagine there’s money, corruption, greed, sex, scandal and a whole lot of other stuff that goes on behind closed doors.
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Movie Review: Midnight in Paris

24 Oct

As soon as the plot was revealed to this movie I couldn’t help but anticipate it rather eagerly. The idea of an American couple going to Paris and not being satisfied with life but always chasing up new things seemed interesting to me. It had to be written well though. Otherwise it would be a pot of clichés and nothing to keep the viewer interested. This kept me interested.

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Woody Allen wrote this almost as a love letter to Paris. When being interviewed he said that of he didn’t live in New York it would have to be Paris. Personally, I like Paris a lot. I have nothing against it, it’s a beautiful city. I just have an issue with the way that Paris is portrayed in the media which affects how we view the city.
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Movie Review: Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

18 Oct

Yes, this movie came out a while ago but I finally got the chance to see it and felt like sharing my views. That’s the beauty of having your own blog!

John Le Carre is probably one of the most sold spy authors of all time and the last film adaptation of a novel of his turned out quite well (The Constant Gardener). This is a completely different story, in a  different time and presented very, very, differently. TTTS follows a spy agency in the Cold War and the emotions of them and the things they do. It’s about espionage, lies deceit and the harsh reality that spies face.

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