Welcome to my blog!

Welcome to my blog!

Feel free to leave any suggestions or comments regarding music, books, films, TV, theatre or culture related news...

Monday, January 27, 2014

American Hustle (Eric Warren Singer & David O. Russell)


American Hustle tells the story of brilliant conman Irving Rosenfeld, who along with his equally cunning and seductive partner Sydney Prosser is forced to work for a wild FBI agent Richie DiMaso. DiMaso pushes them into a world of Jersey powerbrokers that is as dangerous as it is enchanting. Carmine Polito - the passionate, volatile, New Jersey political operator - is caught between the con-artists and Feds. Irving's unpredictable wife Rosalyn could be the one to pull the thread that brings their entire world crashing down.


Starring: Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Jennifer Lawrence, Louis C.K., Jack Huston, Michael Peña, Shea Whigham, Elisabeth Röhm, Robert De Niro


Why I loved this film: I would not call this 'the best movie of all times' but it is a great comedy to watch and great entertainment with a good enough plot and brilliant actors.
I would not compare this to 'The wolf of Wall Street' but it is good enough and worth being nominated.
I did not stop laughing from beginning to end and, believe it or not, they managed to get my attention throughout the entire movie, so something must have been done right!
I love seeing Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence in all these different roles. A good actor has to be versatile and these two have proven that they are much more than people give them credit for.
I do not care much for Amy Adams, while Christian Bale was just unrecognisable! Once a good actor, always a good actor!
I was also surprised and loved Robert De Niro's cameo appearance, although it felt like 'Silver Linings Playbook' all over again.
Finally, I am not much of a fan of Louis C.K.'s stand-up comedy but I loved seeing him here. His scenes probably made me laugh the hardest!
Overall, this is a great film to watch, I recommend it, but do not expect to see the best movie ever made!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Wolf of Wall Street (directed by Martin Scorsese; written by Terence Winter and Jordan Belfort)

Jordan Belfort was a Long Island penny stockbroker who served 36 months in prison for defrauding investors in a massive 1990s scam that involved widespread corruption on Wall Street and in the corporate banking world, including shoe designer Steve Madden.


Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie, Matthew McConaughey, Kyle Chandler, Rob Reiner, Jon Favreau, Jean Dujardin, Joanna Lumley, Cristin Milioti, Christine Ebersole, Shea Whigham


Why I loved this film: The first thing people told me was 'it's a long movie... you're going to be there for three hours'... Well, I must say that I was not bored or looking at my watch for a single moment!
However, this movie paints a very decadent picture of the financial sector and its corrupted citizens, perverted by money and greed. A multitude of insatiable degenerates are depicted participating in an unending array of parties, drugs, alcohol, and prostitutes leaving the audience with many explicit and awkward moments. Although I am ok with sex scenes, there were times when I felt it was going too far with no need for such explicit content - albeit seeing Leonardo DiCaprio in the nude is always pleasing to the eye!
But this awkwardness is overlapped by the very funny dialogues - and there were many to choose from -, such as the Leo Dicaprio/Matthew McConaughey dialogue while eating lunch or Leo teaching us how to con a client or just about any scene with Jonah Hill.
I must also highlight two actors who really surprised me since I did not know they were going to be in the movie, but they were also brilliant among such talent: Jean Dujardin, the French hottie of the moment, is as amazing in American movies as in French ones; and I have also watched Joanna Lumley's career grow, since she is one of the greatest British actresses, but I have never seen her in a production of this calibre.
So far, I have been simply saying how much I like or dislike movies based on their storylines and acting, but here I am taking this a step further, since the music was also very well chosen. There were many times where I had to stop myself from singing out loud! It had all the great tunes, even ones I had not heard in a long time!
The scenery was also amazing, or should I say, eye-popping!
Totally worth seeing!

Confessions of a Wild Child (Jackie Collins)

We meet the teenage Lucky Santangelo before she became the powerful and charismatic woman she is today, and follow her on a journey where she discovers boys and love into a path to success.


Quote: "I have no desire to obsess about Marco any more. I need to file him away in the back of my head until I'm ready to take his breath away. Because one day it will happen, I have never been more sure of anything. Marco and I are destined to be together. It's a given."


My thoughts on this book: I was tremendously disappointed with this novel. I have read all of Jackie Collins books, which include the more recent years of Lucky Santangelo where she is often reminded - or reminds us - of her past. Therefore, this book brought nothing new to the table. It was a 'fun read' but what appears quite short at the beginning turned out to be long overdue from being so boring!
I guess I just expected more!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Golden Globes are back, once again, hosted by Amy Poehler and Tina Fey!

Best Supporting Actress - Motion Picture: Jennifer Lawrence (American Hustle)

Best Supporting Actress - TV Series, Mini-Series, TV Movie: Jacqueline Bisset (Dancing on the Edge)

Best Mini-Series or TV Movie: Behind the Candelabra

Best Actress - Mini-Series or TV Movie: Elisabeth Moss (Top of the Lake)

Best Actor - TV Series or Drama: Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad)

Best TV Series or Drama: Breaking Bad

Best Original Score - Motion Picture: Alex Ebert (All Is Lost)

Best Original Song - Motion Picture: Bono, Adam Clayton, The Edge, Larry Mullen Jr, and Brian Burton (Ordinary Love)

Best Supporting Actor - TV Series, Mini-Series, TV Movie: Jon Voight (Ray Donovan)

Best Actress - Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Amy Adams (American Hustle)

Best Actress - TV Series - Drama: Robin Wright (House of Cards)

Best Supporting Actor - Motion Picture: Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club)

Best Screenplay - Motion Picture: Spike Jonze (Her)

Best Actor - TV Series - Musical or Comedy: Andy Samberg (Brooklyn Nine-Nine)

Best Foreign Language Film: La grande bellezza

Best Actor in a Mini-Series or TV Movie: Michael Douglas (Behind the Candelabra)

Best Animated Feature Film: Frozen

Best Actress - TV Series - Musical or Comedy: Amy Poehler (Parks & Recreation)

Cecil B. DeMille: Woody Allen

Best Director: Alfonso Cuarón (Gravity)

Best TV Series - Comedy: Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Best Actor - Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Leonardo DiCaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street)

Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: American Hustle

Best Actress - Motion Picture - Drama: Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)

Best Actor - Motion Picture - Drama: Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club)

Best Motion Picture - Drama: 12 Years a Slave

That's All Folks!

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (directed by Ben Stiller)

A day-dreamer escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a world of fantasies filled with heroism, romance and action. When his job along with that of his co-worker are threatened, he takes action in the real world embarking on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could ever have imagined.

Starring: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Kathryn Hahn, Adam Scott, Adrian Martinez, Shirley MacLaine, Marcus Antturi, Amy Stiller, Kai Lennox, Sean Penn

My thoughts on this film: This was one of those movies where I really did not know what to expect, but I ended up enjoying it. There is a nice message to this and it is a feel good movie. Definitely worth seeing on the big screen. I am used to Ben Stiller playing idiotic characters so, although this has comedy elements, it was a breath of fresh air, and in my personal opinion, a lot more enjoyable.
The only part that felt odd and made me go back to other Ben Stiller - not so funny - movies was the Benjamin Button bit. I think the film could have done without those scenes!
Otherwise it was great to watch and I would definitely recommend it!

Sunday, January 05, 2014

R.I.P. Eusébio da Silva Ferreira

Eusébio - aka The Black Panther - has died at the age of 71. He suffered a cardiac arrest early today.
Eusébio was one of the best players of all time and helped Portugal to third place at the 1966 World Cup, finishing as top scorer in the tournament with nine goals.
The Mozambique-born striker made his name at club level with Benfica, winning 11 league titles during a 15-year spell and two Golden Boot awards as Europe's leading goal scorer.
He also scored 41 goals in 64 appearances for Portugal.
The Black Panther is holding his lucky white towel in the picture, which he brought to every football match as a lucky charm for our players.
The man may have passed away but the legend will never die.
May you rest in peace, Eusébio!