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...

My ratings:
❤️ = Loved it
😐 = It's okay
😝 = Hated it

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

R.I.P. Cecil the Lion

I cannot help but wonder what is this world we live in?
Killing animals for sport, for pleasure, for an adventure, or even for their fur is simply disgusting and distressing. There is no justification in indulging in such acts of violence.
Cecil's killers have the same blame as if they had just killed a person. I would not say they should have the same ending, but bring them to court, try them as serial killers, which is exactly what they are.
My heart goes out to this poor, beautiful animal and all the others killed by such heartless monsters, who cannot find a purpose for their own life, so they have to destroy innocent, defenceless creatures in order to feel more manly.
Let us hope some good can come from this.

Here is the best speech I heard about this tragedy, given by Jimmy Kimmel, although there is one thing I must correct: that dentist/serial killer is not the most hated man in America, but the most hated man in the world!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Mr. Holmes (Directed by: Bill Condon; Written by: Mitch Cullin and Jeffrey Hatcher)

The story is set in 1947, following a long-retired Holmes living in a Sussex village with his housekeeper and rising detective son. But then he finds himself haunted by an unsolved 50-year-old case. Holmes' memory is not what it used to be as he only remembers fragments of the case: a confrontation with an angry husband and a secret bond with his beautiful but unstable wife.

Starring: Ian McKellen, Laura Linney, Milo Parker, Hiroyuki Sanada, Hattie Morahan, Patrick Kennedy, Philip Davis, Frances de la Tour, Takako Akashi, Zak Shukor, John Sessions, Michael Culkin

My thoughts on this film: It is a delightful movie, filled with humour and sadness, as Mr. Holmes revisits his last case and finds that his memory is not quite what it used to be. He has retired to his cottage by the sea and taken up the well-known hobby of beekeeping - or apiculture. Living with him is his housekeeper, Mrs. Munro, and her son, Roger, a precocious young boy. The on-screen dynamic between these three is astonishing.
The sets are detailed with precision, the scenery is gorgeous, and the cinematography is stunning. The score is perfect and captures the sentiment of the scenes with finesse.
This is a very different kind of Sherlock Holmes story. It is sentimental without being over the top and I believe it is a fair representation of the greatest detective in fictional history.
I recommend it highly, but do not expect a 'Robert Downey Jr.' type of action.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Ant-Man (Directed by: Peyton Reed; Written by: Edgar Wright, Joe Cornish, Adam McKay, Paul Rudd, Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, and Jack Kirby)

Armed with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, con-man Scott Lang must embrace his inner-hero and help mentor, Dr. Hank Pym, to protect the secret behind the spectacular Ant-Man suit from a new generation of towering threats. Pym and Lang must fight all obstacles and save the world.

Starring: Paul Rudd, Michael Douglas, Evangeline Lilly, Corey Stoll, Bobby Cannavale, Judy Greer, Abby Ryder Fortson, Michael Peña, John Slattery

Why I loved this film: I must confess that I had never read or even heard of Ant-Man until now.
Having said this, I should add that I found Paul Rudd brilliant - as he usually is in funny roles - and very believable in this action-packed movie. Michael Douglas was also great. Overall, it was well-cast.
The action was superb, it kept my attention level up at all times, and I particularly loved seeing the world from the same point of view as 'little Ant-Man'. The images were just amazing!
Overall, I found this to be a funny film that will keep you in suspense throughout. A good delivery from Marvel!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The Monogram Murders (Sophie Hannah)

Hercule Poirot's quiet supper in a London coffee house is interrupted when a young woman confides to him that she is about to be murdered. She is terrified, but begs Poirot not to find and punish her killer. Once she is dead, she insists, justice will have been done.
Later that night, Poirot learns that three guests at the fashionable Bloxham Hotel have been murdered, a cufflink placed in each one's mouth. Could there be a connection with the frightened woman?
While Poirot struggles to put together the pieces of the puzzle, the murderer prepares another hotel bedroom for a fourth victim...

Quote: "I did not want to talk about the Bloxham Murders ever again. What I wanted - needed - was to write about them, to set down on paper every detail of what had happened. It mystified me that I was so eager to do the latter and so reluctant to undertake the former. Why should writing about a thing be so different from speaking about it?"

Why this book speaks to me: I was happily surprised. This story captures the spirit and voice of Agatha Christie as I remember with a little touch of the 21st century.
As sceptical as I was at first, I really enjoyed it. However, I am no Hercule Poirot expert.
Overall, a good read!

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Terminator Genisys (Directed by: Alan Taylor; Written by: Laeta Kalogridis, Patrick Lussier, James Cameron, and Gale Anne Hurd)

When John Connor, leader of the human resistance, sends Sgt. Kyle Reese back to 1984 to protect Sarah Connor and safeguard the future, Sgt. Reese finds himself in a new and unfamiliar version of the past, where he is faced with unlikely allies, dangerous new enemies, and an unexpected new mission: To reset the future...

Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jason Clarke, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney, J.K. Simmons, Dayo Okeniyi, Matt Smith, Courtney B. Vance

Why I loved this film: I was afraid it would be another flop of a sequel, but I must say that Arnold has not lost his touch!
The story was continued from the last two movies with a lot of new special effects added to the equation, and the one-liners were just as brilliant (not forgetting the everlasting I'll Be Back)!
I was entertained throughout the whole film. It was intense and action-packed and the acting was good. The relationship between Sarah Connor and the Terminator really reminded me of the relationship between John Connor (Edward Furlong) and the Terminator in the second movie, which added a lot of depth to the story.
Overall, it was a great surprise! Worth seeing for all Terminator fans!

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Magic Mike XXL (Directed by Gregory Jacobs; Written by Reid Carolin)


Three years after Mike bowed out of the stripper life at the top of his game, he and the remaining Kings of Tampa hit the road to Myrtle Beach to put on one last blow-out performance.


Starring: Channing Tatum, Juan Piedrahita, Joe Manganiello, Kevin Nash, Gabriel Iglesias, Matt Bomer, Adam Rodriguez, Carrie Anne Hunt, Crystal Hunt, Amber Heard, Lindsey Moser, Stephen Boss, Jada Pinkett Smith, Michael Strahan, Donald Glover, Kimberley Drummond, Andie MacDowell, Jane McNeill, Rhoda Griffis, Ann Hamilton, Elizabeth Banks

My thoughts on this film: I am no prude and I really liked the first Magic Mike, so I was hoping to see the same kind of guilty pleasure with some good moves. Forget it. These guys just used their nice bodies in a showy and uninteresting way with very little classy dancing.
I found the storyline to be corny, sleazy, and overall silly (not to say stupid). I almost walked out in the middle.
The first Magic Mike was great. This one... not so much!

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Ted 2 (Seth MacFarlane)

Newlywed couple Ted and Tami-Lynn want to have a baby, but in order to qualify to be a parent, Ted will have to prove that he is a person in a court of law.

Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Seth MacFarlane, Amanda Seyfried, Jessica Barth, Giovanni Ribisi, Morgan Freeman, Patrick Warburton, Liam Neeson

Why I loved this film: When I first heard there was going to be a Ted sequel I had my doubts. Sequels are never as good as the first movie. Well, was I wrong...
This is extremely well-written and - in the middle of all the jokes - it makes you think about what it really means to be a person.
Out of all the jokes, my favourite one had to be the F. Scott Fitzgerald gag, but I will not spoil the movie, so you will have to see it for yourselves.
However, I love the fact that under all the F-jokes there is a real message you can take home.
The sequel is less funny than the first Ted but just as sweet and worth seeing.