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

Sunday, January 31, 2016

R.I.P. Terry Wogan

Sir Terry Wogan has passed away today aged 77 following a short battle with cancer.
The much-loved radio host and television presenter, who celebrated 50 years in broadcasting this year, was a great part of my childhood.
I cannot imagine the world of radio and television, and even the Eurovision Song Contest, without the lovely voice and amazing character of Terry Wogan.
I even remember his singing, which was not as great, I must say! ;)
Sir, you will be dearly missed for everything that you have ever represented in Britain.
There will never be anyone like you!
Thank you for the joys, laughter, and professionalism that you have brought to our homes.
You really were, and will always be a 'genious'!
My deep condolences to his wife and children. R.I.P.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Revenant (Alejandro González Iñárritu)

Inspired by true events, The Revenant captures one man's epic adventure of survival and the extraordinary power of the human spirit. In an expedition of the uncharted American wilderness, legendary explorer Hugh Glass is brutally attacked by a bear and left for dead by members of his own hunting team. In a quest to survive, Glass endures unimaginable grief as well as the betrayal of his confidant John Fitzgerald. Guided by sheer will and the love of his family, Glass must navigate a vicious winter in a relentless pursuit to live and find redemption.

Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Domhnall Gleeson, Will Poulter, Forrest Goodluck, Christopher Rosamond, Lukas Haas

Why I loved this film: It is enough to know that this was based on a true story, but how they film it makes it even more amazing!
Hugh Glass' determination to survive and find those who abandoned him provides one of the most harrowing stories ever put on screen. Covered in blood, sweat, and dirt, DiCaprio spends much of the movie not talking, keeping the focus on his actions. However, I must say that you rarely see something this intense on screen.
The movie and DiCaprio definitely deserved the Golden Globe and will deserve their Oscars.
In the meantime, you should see The Revenant. It is an experience like you cannot imagine, and it will keep you thinking about those events for quite a while.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The Big Short (Adam McKay)



Four citizens of the world of high-finance predict the credit and housing bubble collapse of the mid-2000s, and decide to take on the big banks for their greed and lack of foresight.


Starring: Ryan Gosling, Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Marisa Tomei, Adepero Oduye, Hamish Linklater, Jeremy Strong, Anthony Bourdain, John Magaro, Finn Wittrock, Brad Pitt, Melissa Leo, Karen Gillan, Margot Robbie, Selena Gomez


Why I loved this film: The Big Short succeeds in turning such a demented and corrupt circus into something improbably hilarious. The power of comedy is its ability to let us see the whole story from a different point of view, and let us process it in ways we would not have been able to otherwise.
The plot includes so many facets and characters that it could easily have fallen into disarray, but Adam McKay makes every single character memorable and illuminates every piece of jargon that could be confusing from the outset. It is a huge accomplishment and a far more important one than might seem apparent. The things that were allowed to happen in the realms of business, finance, and banking are absolutely insane and unbelievable. It has to be funny because there is no other way of delivering this vast amount of information and complete failure of our entire society and make it all snap into place.
It is not enough to even ask for the truth any more, or answers, we need to question the entire system, a whole web of poisonous bonds that have tightly wound themselves around us. The work of the film itself is allowing us to project our thoughts, our fears, our anger, and our confusions into this whole puzzle, while being told the truth, so that we have a place to even begin towards understanding the entire mess.
Therefore, I believe that The Big Short is one of the most important films of our era and one of the best. I wanted to laugh and cry at the same time. It is one of those things you do not believe possible until you see it with your own eyes.
I totally recommend this film!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

The Danish Girl (Directed by: Tom Hooper; Written by: David Ebershoff and Lucinda Coxon)

A love story inspired by the lives of Danish artists Lili Elbe and Gerda Wegener. Lili and Gerda's marriage and work evolve as they deal with Lili's journey as a transgender pioneer.

Starring: Eddie Redmayne, Alicia Vikander, Amber Heard, Emerald Fennell, Ben Whishaw, Pip Torrens, Matthias Schoenaerts, Jake Graf, Nicholas Woodeson, Philip Arditti, Miltos Yerolemou, Sebastian Koch, Sophie Kennedy Clark

My thoughts on this film: I found this movie to be very touching and delicate. It is delicate in the way that it treats difficult subjects, such as sexuality and the discovery of one's identity in a hostile period. The fact that it is a true story makes the whole thing even more interesting.
I do not think that the film is perfect, but I loved the acting, cinematography, and screenplay.
I only wish Eddie Redmayne could have been more believable as Lili, especially the first time that Lili appears in public. I really thought he was going to win an Oscar for this role from the trailer, but after watching the whole movie, I am not as certain.
I also do not think there is much need for all that nudity, especially when Lili and Gerda are in bed. That was not the core of the story, and it felt cheap, as if the whole point was to show Alicia's naked body. She is a good actress with her clothes on!
Finally, I am very interested in true stories, so I had done my research and felt that the most important parts of Lili's life had been left out of the story.
Lili did not undergo two surgeries but about four or five (this part should have been explained, it would have been more interesting and smart than the love story).
She did not die in the garden talking to Gerda, she died from complications in her last surgery.
Her last words to Gerda (in the film) were actually the last words to her sister (on the phone).
Overall, it was interesting but there was more they could have done with such an amazing story!

Monday, January 11, 2016

R.I.P. David Bowie

Rock legend David Bowie has passed away at the age of 69 after an 18-month battle with cancer.
I am speechless... I remember the first time this amazing actor / singer / composer came to my attention in the film Labyrinth. I was scared of him at the time, but as I grew up, that scary feeling turned into a crush, which later turned into respect for this amazing do-it-all guy!
It is hard to imagine the world without some people in it, and Mr. Bowie is certainly one of them. Maybe this is what immortality is all about...
It was only a few days ago that I was watching Jimmy Fallon talk about his new album and video clip. It still seems so unreal!
I guess the best way to honour an immortal man like David Bowie is to remember him always and to keep listening to his music.

Here is a clip of two immortal guys doing what they did best, and will continue on doing as two shiny stars:


See you again someday. Rock on!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

The 73rd Golden Globe Awards

Hosted by Ricky Gervais

Supporting actress - motion picture: Kate Winslet (Jobs)

Supporting actress - TV series, limited series or TV movie: Maura Tierney (The Affair)

Actress - TV series - comedy or musical: Rachel Bloom (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend)

TV series - comedy: Mozart in the Jungle

Limited series or TV movie: Wolf Hall

Actor - limited series or TV movie: Oscar Isaac (Show me a Hero)

Supporting Actor - TV series, limited series or TV movie: Christian Slater (Mr. Robot)

Original score - motion picture: Ennio Morricone (The Hateful Eight)

Actor - TV series, drama: John Hamm (Mad Men)

Actor - Motion Picture - Comedy: Matt Damon (The Martian)

Motion Picture - Animated: Inside Out

Supporting actor - Motion Picture: Sylvester Stallone (Creed)

Screenplay - Motion Picture: Aaron Sorkin (Steve Jobs)

Actor - TV series, comedy: Gael Garcia Bernal (Mozart in the Jungle)

Motion Picture, foreign language: Son of Saul (Hungary)

Actress - Limited series or TV movie: Lady Gaga (American Horror Story)

Original song, Motion Picture: Writing's on the Wall (Spectre)

TV series - drama: Mr. Robot

Cecil B. DeMille: Denzel Washington

Director - Motion Picture: Alejandro G. Iñarritu (The Revenant)

Actress - TV series - drama: Taraji P. Henson

Actress - Motion Picture - drama: Jennifer Lawrence (Joy)

Motion Picture - musical or comedy: The Martian

Actress - Motion Picture - drama: Brie Larson (Room)

Actor - Motion Picture - drama: Leonardo DiCaprio (The Revenant)

Motion Picture - drama: The Revenant

That's all Folks!

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Moriarty (Anthony Horowitz)

Days after Holmes and his arch-enemy Moriarty fall to their doom at the Reichenbach Falls, Pinkerton agent Frederick Chase arrives from New York. The death of Moriarty has created a poisonous vacuum, which has been swiftly filled by a fiendish new criminal mastermind.


Assisted by Inspector Athelney Jones, a devoted student of Holmes' methods of investigation and deduction, Chase must hunt down this shadowy figure, a man much feared but seldom seen, a man determined to engulf London in a tide of murder and menace.

Quote: "How could I have forgotten that this descendant of one of America's most famous families had been sent to the court of King James? A seat had actually been reserved for Robert Lincoln at the Ford Theatre on the night his father had been assassinated and the sympathy that many people felt for him had been translated into enthusiastic support. It was said that Lincoln might himself run for president at the time of the next election."

Why this book speaks to me: A good crime novel needs to keep the reader guessing; it needs to keep them suspecting everyone and questioning their motives: scrutinising their characters. This has achieved it masterfully. Each new character that was introduced could have been a new link to the crime lord or a suspect. The plot was incredibly fast, even for a book of this genre. Two out of three chapters ended with a point that made me want to keep reading. Towards the end, it somehow becomes even faster and more intense.
Anthony Horowitz seems to enjoy surprising his readers: he did it in The House of Silk and managed to do it again. I was completely shocked by the ending. I did have the feeling that something was going to happen. Something had to happen considering the title of the book, but I never expected that!
It was indeed very clever and incredibly deceptive at the same time!
I highly recommend this to all Sherlock Holmes fans, even more than House of Silk, and I will continue to read Anthony Horowitz novels. He has my full support!

Sunday, January 03, 2016

2015 Top Ten: My Choices

Movies:
1- American Sniper
2- The Theory of Everything
3- Suffragette
4- Bridge of Spies
5- Furious 7
6- The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
7- La Famille Bélier
8- Mr. Holmes
9- Ted 2
10- Burnt

TV:
1- Last Week Tonight With John Oliver
2- The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon
3- Late Night with Seth Meyers
4- The Big Bang Theory
5- Grey's Anatomy
6- Two and a Half Men
7- Parks and Recreation
8- Modern Family
9- The Good Wife
10- House of Cards

Songs:
1- Não Faço Questão (D.A.M.A. & Gabriel o Pensador)
2- El Perdón (Nicky Jam & Enrique Iglesias)
3- La Gozadera (Gente De Zona & Marc Anthony)
4- El Taxi (Pitbull)
5- Conqueror (Estelle & Jussie Smollet)
6- Classico (The Gift)
7- Growing Up (Macklemore Ryan Lewis & Ed Sheeran)
8- Locked Away (R. City & Adam Levine)
9- Cheerleader (OMI)
10- Dizer que não (Dengaz)

Books:
1- Le Papyrus de César (Jean-Yves Ferri & Didier Conrad)
2- Killing Monica (Candace Bushnell)
3- The Monogram Murders (Sophie Hannah)
4- This House is Haunted (John Boyne)
5- Daddy's Gone A Hunting (Mary Higgins Clark)
6- Mistress (James Patterson & David Ellis)
7- The Hive (Gill Hornby)
8- Gone Girl (Gillian Flynn)
9- Mr. Mercedes (Stephen King)
10- The Silkworm (Robert Galbraith)

Lolo (Julie Delpy)

Violette - a 40-year-old workaholic with a career in the fashion industry - falls for a provincial computer geek, Jean-René, while on a spa retreat with her best friend.

Starring: Julie Delpy, Dany Boon, Vincent Lacoste, Karin Viard

My thoughts on this film: This kind of character-based comedy can fall flat on its face without the right actors to carry it. Fortunately, the casting is practically flawless down to the smallest parts. Julie Delpy can do neurotic as well as Diane Keaton, and Dany Boon is just the right partner.
The ending is also extremely clever as it draws the way to a possible sequel... maybe there will be a female Lolo?
Definitely a fun movie to watch!