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“It has been said that to write is to live forever. The man who said that is now dead.”

Category: 2009

Summer Never Felt This Good, Ever

(500) Days of Summer quite simply is the near-perfect anti-romance, yet romantic movie.

This is not a love story, it is a story about love; so the movie’s tagline quips.

& it exceeded my already-brimming expectations by a mile. Make that ten. Nah, a million miles.

Left me all fuzzy, warm, & humbled by its simple charm.

& Zooey Deschanel? Simply perfect. The only Summer imaginable.

Okay, I said near-perfect. So there was one slight disappointment. Autumn.

A cameo from Rachel McAdams or Amy Adams as Autumn would have made my day.

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Next Up…

…jagung-s!

Reflections (Courtesy of www.ironwulf.net)

I mean, the (near) top of the world…

Spiderman

Yay…?

Anderton, KLCC

Nay…?

Hmmm… =)

Brand New Eyes: It’s All Hayley!

The album in a nutshell: It says a lot that despite being the only female, Hayley Williams sounds like she’s got the BIGGEST BALLS in the band. Step aside world, for Hayley is back. & she is unstoppable.

Let’s just get one thing out of the way: Brand New Eyes is not better than RIOT!, nor is it as good as RIOT!.

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But it does not disappoint. Oh hell no.

Apparently title-written in all-lower-cased for a reason (‘brand new eyes’ as opposed to the shouting upper-cased ‘RIOT!’), Paramore‘s 3rd album has been long-awaited by us fans, with ludicrously high expectations to meet after the monstrous success of their previous album, RIOT! & all the Twilight-huha over “Decode”. As a fan, I find writing a justified review a tough attempt. As much as I want to proudly declare it as “THIS IS DA SHIT!”, the honest fact is, it is not. But do not fret, all my fellow Paramore fans (& for those ignorant ones who have yet to receive the gift of appreciation of this band), for Brand New Eyes still is, at the end of the day, a must-have.

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The moment the 1st track, “Careful”, hits you full in the face you will smile in relief – oh yea, Paramore has not lost any mojo all right. Downright catchy, melodious & aggressive, with some rather neat instrumental riffs, it kicks off the album nicely. The momentum is continued with the boundless energy of “Ignorance”. Though it follows the same aggressive punch formulae of previous hits “Emergency” & “Misery Business”, after a couple of listens, I have to admit the 3-part strong sequences used (also for other tracks in this album) of verse>pre-chorus>chorus become a little tiresome, especially without any particularly memorable melodies. Nevertheless, “Ignorance” has Hayley jumping out & kicking your ass off the floor to start head-banging. “Playing God”, the 3rd track, is pop-easy on the ears (but with some rather confrontational lyrics though!). Track 4, “Brick by Boring Brick” followed subsequently by “Turn It Off” are the most radio-ready tracks, seeing Paramore at its endearing pop-rock best.

The problem is, with the album starting off quite brilliantly (& safe, which is not entirely bad) with the first 5 tracks, things go downhill after that. Paramore slows things down with the odd-one-out acoustic “The Only Exception”, & I’ve never thought any Paramore song could put me to sleep & sound almost uninspired, but here it is. It does not get better when tracks 7 to 9 follow, because I felt I was listening to the same song over again for 3 times. It  does not help that these 3 tracks used the same tonic chord. Quite frankly, this resulting sequence of tracks 6-9 is the sort of thing all original-CD buyers (especially long before the illegal downloading era began) feared the most – purchasing a CD that is half-filled with awesome tracks, & the other half muddled with fillers.

Another acoustic track, “Misguided Ghosts” fills slot no.10, & though it did not lift my mood after the dreaded tracks 6-9, at first listen it sounded like Paramore was trying something different too hard. In fact, it doesn’t even sound Paramore-ish, more like something an under-rated indie artist would do. Given a few more listens, the sensitive poignancy of the song surprisingly grew on me, & the subdued guitar progressions that complemented each other were quite beautiful.

All is forgiven when the final track, “All I Wanted” arrives. I almost cried in relief! Paramore is back! “All I Wanted” is almost epic-like, closing the album in the most glorious of ways, not unlike what “My Heart” did for All We Know is Falling.

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For me, Paramore stands out among the other bands for some particular reasons: They sound phenomenal live or acoustic, & Hayley Nichole Williams – unbelievable vocals & hotness. Well, you will be glad to know Hayley not only sounds spectacular in this album, miraculously, she seems to be getting even better! Which seems to be a rather unfortunate thing; the undeniable fact that this album showcases the unstoppable talent of Hayley, while her bandmates look set to continue playing the supporting role. Not necessarily such a bad thing, because Josh, Zac, Jeremy & Taylor are  really perfect behind Hayley. Notably, Zac tries really hard this time with more authoritative, almost individualistic drumming, but it’s really no fault of the guys that they get overwhelmed by Hayley’s vocal range & power. She is just that good.

You did not hear me wrong, she really does sound like she’s got the biggest balls in the band.

Yup, that one is on her way to being the ultimate frontwoman. She completely blows us away, singing her heart out track after track. I love the chilling brilliance of her vocals even during the low quiet parts of “Brick by Boring Brick” & the 1st chorus of “All I Wanted”, all the way to the climax of “All I Wanted”, when all the instruments die out for her to hit the final chorus in full glory. If you want a prime example of Hayley’s breathtaking vocal prowess, that 8-second ecstasy is the one for you. I bet the members of the Facebook group ‘When Hayley Williams sings those high notes, I cream… seriously’ would be bloody damn proud.

On another note, the sound recording for this album, just like RIOT!, is almost flawless, coming off as very polished, almost too much. One thing I did not enjoy however was the amount of vocal layering (or whatever you call it) used notably during choruses. Hayley has a standout voice & layering her vocals to 3-5 Hayleys at one go just mutes the full experience. The songwriting has glaringly matured. The tracks are filled with pretty aggressive, cynical & brutally personal lyrics, most of them blatantly relating to all the almost-broke-up drama the band was undergoing while undertaking this album.

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Alas, Brand New Eyes is really a neat album, but not enough to substantiate the full potential of Paramore. It lacks the outstanding endearing melodies of “Misery Business” & “That’s What You Get & is halfway drowned by a couple of fillers, but significantly displays a more mature growth of Hayley & her bandmates. & all this while Hayley seems to be getting hotter than ever! Like I said, the album still manages not to disappoint. In fact, more importantly, this record not only justifies Paramore’s sky-rocketing rise, it shows that Paramore is certainly special (credit enormously to Hayley) & has an enormous load of potential & talent still waiting to be unleashed.

In other words, Brand New Eyes has Paramore saying “Hey, we are back!!! We are not just passing by, we are here to stay. & you know what? You have not bloody seen the best of us, yet.”

So while I struggle to construct words to conclude this latest Paramore effort, I came across this review on 411mania.com which had this to say: “Paramore is a band that realize they’ve a chance to make it and they’re looking to make the most of it with Brand New Eyes, & they’ve just a smidgen more ambition away from doing just that. Quite simply, it’s just a question of whether the boys have the balls to join Hayley on their inevitable ascent further up the pop rock ladder.”

Say what you like, but you can’t deny it really is all, ALL, about Hayley Williams. At this rate, only a sore throat could stop her.

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Best tracks: “Brick by Boring Brick”, “Turn It Off”, “All I Wanted”, & “Careful”

To Yasmin

Yasmin Ahmad, 1958 – 2009.

Yasmin

Local films & advertisements will never be the same again.

Sepet

Sepet, 2004

Talentime

Talentime, 2009

Param's Tricycle

Param’s Bicycle, Merdeka 2003

Tan Hong Ming in Love

Tan Hong Ming in Love, Merdeka 2007

“Our children are colour blind. Shouldn’t we keep them that way?”

Half-Blood

KV would just like to reaffirm here that he is behind those who believe the whole Moon trip is a massive conspiracy!

We all knew from the beginning no Potter movie could ever, EVER, come close to matching the ultimate experience of the Potter books. I only hoped that any of the movies could at least make an enjoyable cinema spectacle, or do some justice to the awesome world & plot Rowling created by transferring a little magic to the people who had not the chance to experience the books.

When Sorcerer’s Stone was made into a film, people complained it was way too kiddish & long. I adored the wonderful  choices of Rupert Grint & Emma Watson, as well as most of the rest of the primary cast, but cringed at Radcliffe. (Of course, I didn’t know at that time Radcliffe would require more than 3 movies to finally learn how to act)

Next was Chamber of Secrets, to which everyone agreed was better than the 1st, but still, too tailored for kids.

Then aboard came Alfonso Cuaron to make what is my favourite Potter movie, Prisoner of Azkaban. Thrilling & faithful to what was probably the best plot twist of all the books, only the casting of Gambon as Dumbledore laid a sole sour note on otherwise pretty much the definitive Potter movie.

Goblet of Fire was proof that a brilliant plot from one of the best books does not necessarily translate into a good movie. It was quite the Bollywood-ish mess, with a completely destroyed Yule Ball depiction & an embarassingly worsening mis-potrayal of the very much beloved Dumbledore (not forgetting Cho Chang).

Order of the Phoenix took the best aspects of its respective book & turned out to be quite excellent, though not without flaws. Gary Oldman, Evanna Lynch, Helena Bonham Carter & Imelda Staunton were terrific in their roles, easily slotting Phoenix alongside Azkaban as the best Potter bigscreen adaptations to date.

Now, we arrive at Half-Blood Prince. Come to think of it, there’s really not much to complain from apart from the plot holes & drastic changes, so what made it such an unsatisfying experience? The whole movie was quite beautifully made on screen, along with stellar acting. It did have its engaging & chilling moments, so why did I left the hall feeling like it was the slowest unhappening movie ever?

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Yes, every Potter fan is not going to stop grumbling about the many changes & left-outs of the book’s complicated plot, from the roles of Dobby & Kreacher to the Gaunts memory. I didn’t actually feel too bad about those, understanding that condensing the books to fit a film is required, but admittedly, this movie has strayed so far from the books it begs the big question of how the movies are going to bring a justified closure to the Potter journey in Deathly Hallows Part I & II. The humour was aplenty & quite brilliant, but over-switching between all those subplots & the more crucial main story of the Horcruxes, Voldemort’s past & Malfoy’s plan made it quite confusing, losing all sense of urgency & significance of the final build-up towards Deathly Hallows. Despite a handful of scenes that were brilliantly executed (such as Katie Bell being poisoned), addition of new scenes & the exclusion of the roles of Fleur, Bill & Scrimgeour were questionable, while Neville as well as Tonks were wasted (especially Tena’s Tonks, who made such an interesting presence in Order of the Phoenix). Yes, most of the crucial scenes were polished & beautifully done, but honestly, all sense of suspense & build-up were lost all the way towards the end, culminating in a non-climatic way. Dumbledore’s death felt hollow on screen, & Snape being revealed as the Half-blood Prince, & more importantly, as a pivotal ambiguous character, did not have its predicted impact.

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Of course, despite all this, it’s still freaking way better than Twilight. Romance included.

But enough about that, if I were to continue debating about the plot I could construct a whole thesis out of it. There’s also not much to shout about Nicholas Hooper’s scores, notably since I felt the best moments of the film happened to have no background music. Quite frankly, the later Potter film scores have never been the same since John Williams left. Now I’m going to have to give it to the spectacular performance of the cast that made the movie a much more bearable experience. The main trio have outdone themselves yet again, bringing Harry, Ron & Hermione’s maturing lifes to screen amazingly. Radcliffe, I must admit, was quite awesome in that Felix Felicis scene. Watson & Grint were simply perfect during those romantic scenes, & Lynch continues her stellar quirkiness. Helena Bonham Carter was incredibly seductive, newcomer Jessie Cave was a perfect & hilarious Lavender, & Rickman gave an impeccable performance as Snape. Gambon does improve, but still does not channel Dumbledore’s aura in any way. Oh, don’t forget both the actors who played the young & teenage Tom Marvolo Riddle; those were chillingly engaging performances! I would especially like to remark upon the intensed captivating Tom Felton as Malfoy, which without doubt is the outstanding performance in the movie. Finally, he gets the screen time he deserves!

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Of course, getting more screen time is not always a good thing, as Bonnie Wright displayed. Throughout all the Potter movies, the castings have rarely been wrong, rather more astonishingly spot-on (think Ron, Hermione, Snape, McGonagall, Hagrid, Malfoy, Lupin, Sirius, Trelawney, Umbridge, Luna, the Weasley twins, etc), with the exception of Gambon’s Dumbledore & now more glaringly, Wright’s Ginny Weasley. Wright lacks so much of the feisy personality Ginny is known for, instead giving us a mundane & unflattering Ginny.

At this rate, they should really just do all of us a favour by making Harry go get it on with Hermione or even Luna, seeing that they are way more interesting & share much more chemistry together in the movies.

KV is finally beginning to bang his head to the tunes of Paramore’s “Ignorance”.

Read KV’s review on Order of the Phoenix here.

I Finally Read Dan Brown

Hats off to Roddick, totally owned Fed. But I guess Fed is the ultimate player of the century for a reason, eh? Mad final match, I’m surprised Fed’s wife did not go into labour right there in center court.

Sorry Mr. Brown for taking this long, I am deeply ashamed & regret this very much. But more about that later.

I’m baaaacccck from Bali with me UTP bros & sistas. We fought valiantly against the swines & all the As & Hs & Ns & 1s, we wore sarongs, we discovered that anything that had land space qualifies as a road in Bali, we witnessed the overpopulation of motorcycles, & we discovered we were naturally talented in swallowing Kuta waves rather than surfing. Especially Suet Yeng, to whom I had to play Baywatch saviour to keep her from overdosing herself with salt water.

Kuta Beach

The closest we ever got to successfully standing on the board at Kuta beach

I would have loved to say Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen was totally awesome but who am I kidding? It was one heck of an unbalanced movie, so thankfully I checked my brain at the cinema doors. I had no idea what the plot was all about frankly – something about Megatron working under The Fallen, a big gun that would shoot the sun or something hidden in the pyramids, & Megan Fox working in a bengkel – it was just plain ridiculous, but really who cares since we were there to see the robots & outrageous action-packed almost-pornographic shots of Megan Fox CGI spectacles. Minus the irritating twin Autobots (which the Devastator should have easily tapao’ed) & the many additional generic pointless Decepticons (& WHAT THE F**K WAS THAT DECEPTICON CHICK ALL ABOUT?! Tiba-tiba felt like Species pulak), Bay did not disappoint when it comes to cool robot action. The Optimus action scene in the mountains in the middle of the movie reigned supreme & was the spectacular moment of the film, it left me completely breathless. Bay really shouldn’t have attempted to do so much & draw out so many unnecessary scenes that just seemed to go on & on. Shia did a commendable job by the way, holding his own against the mighty presence of the robots.

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Optimus giving some serious prime ass whooping in the mountains

With this holidays completing its first month, I have been catching up with the one favourite thing I last religiously did with the last Potter book – reading. I finally, finally, gave a chance to Dan Brown, & first started off with Da Vinci, & now I’ve also completed Angels & Demons followed subsequently by Deception Point. I must say, regardless whether factual or not, Dan Brown sure knows a whole load of shit & is exceptionally gifted in creating outrageously superb plots, though I was occasionally tired by the sudden flashbacks & some overdrawn descriptive points of Angels & Demons as well as Deception Point. The Brown books could not however match my feverish fetish for Potter, but it would be unfair to compare Potter against the Dan Brown novels, due to their different writing styles & plot structure. Let’s just put it this way; I enjoyed tremendously the intelligence & thrill of Dan Brown, but I skipped meals, sleep & toilet trips for Potter. Nevertheless, I would not hesitate at the least to give a two-thumbs-two-toes-up & rate The Da Vinci Code, Angels & Demons & Deception Point as must-reads.

Now, I am one of those who unashamedly watched the movie version of Angels & Demons before reading the book, so I did enjoy the movie, but now after reading the book, I realize why many of Dan Brown fans are unhappy with how Ron Howard tremendously simplified the plot (almost completely taking away the science aspect & role of the book) & only concentrating on the battle against the Vatican. The many layers & complexities of all of Dan Brown’s stories are one of the best things about the novels, & more notably for Angels & Demons, since this particular book is where Dan Brown first attempts at intertwining science with controversial religious plots. Keeping faithful with the book would have given the Camerlengo’s role much more crucial resonance & substance on the big screen. 

Speaking of which, guilty of the sin of watching both Ron Howard’s big screen adaptations before reading Dan Brown, I robbed myself of the powerful exhilaration I would have experienced facing Dan Brown’s plot twists in Da Vinci & Angels head-on first time, & I only have myself to blame for not giving a chance to Dan Brown up till now. Anyway, just like Sir Ian McKellen in Da Vinci (as Sir Leigh Teabing), I admired the inspired choice of the brilliant Ewan McGregor as Camerlengo Ventresca/McKenna. Tom Hanks is definitely not the Langdon I imagined from the books, but at least I enjoyed Audrey Tatou (as Sophie Neveu) much more than Ayelet Zurer’s disappointing role as Vittoria Vetra. The one thing I truly was fascinated from the Angels & Demons movie, however, was how the grand sequence of the Camerlengo saving Vatican from the antimatter explosion was visually depicted. It was quite breathtaking on screen.

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Ewan McGregor was brilliant!

& again, because I watched both the movie versions of both Da Vinci & Angels before reading them, resulting in me imagining the respective movie characters in their roles when reading, I could not help but do the same for Deception Point. Of course there’s no Deception Point movie (yet, I guess?), but I couldn’t restrain myself from imagining particular actors/actresses playing the characters in the movie as I read. Interestingly though, from the moment Rachel Sexton (what an irresistable name!) appeared in the first few pages, the first actress that came into mind was relatively unknown Rachel Nichols, & I seriously do not know why! Call it male intuition? Anyway, you can see her in previous movies like Charlie Wilson’s War & P2 or in the coming G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, since you probably do not know who I’m talking about.

Which begs a rather intriguing but insignificant question, who would be suitable to play the roles of the characters in Deception Point should there be a big screen adaptation in the future? Now, I figure the probability of a Deception Point movie is much less compared to the likelihood of Dan Brown’s soon-to-be-released The Lost Symbol being made a movie first, keeping in mind how we love the controversial Vatican & religious scandals as opposed to the government conspiracies of Deception Point, but what the hell, it’s the holidays for me. Oh, I’m going to take Rachel Nichols out of my mind for a more realistic choice (even though she stubbornly stucked in my mind all throughout my reading). Here’s KV playing director, for pointless fun.

Possible Rachel Sextons?

Rachel Nichols, Bryce Dallas Howard, Evangeline Lilly & Jennifer Garner

Rachel Sexton – Bryce Dallas Howard/Evangeline Lilly/Jennifer Garner
Michael Tolland – Ewan McGregor/Robert Downey Jr.
President Zachary Herney – Steve Martin. Joking! Harrison Ford?
Senator Sedgewick Sexton – Russell Crowe/John Travolta
Corky Marlinson – Paul Bettany
NASA Administrator Lawrence Ekstrom – William Peterson
William Pickering – Liam Neeson
Marjorie Tench – Judi Dench
Gabrielle Ashe – Marsha Thomason/Zoe Saldana
Delta-One – Clive Owen

This all-star cast is nuts, but Deception Point would make quite a kick-ass movie. Besides, who could possibly resist such a movie of which its protagonist carries a name like Rachel SEXTON?

So, anyone wanna lend me a copy of Digital Fortress? & by September, The Lost Symbol?

Am I Mellowing Down?

Years back when I was still a teenager, there was this day when I was in my brother’s car, & my brother was listening to some Westlife CD during the drive. I was in the midst of the Evanescence-Linkin Park era of music preferences, so I remember sniggering at my big brother’s apparent “soft” choice of music.

“Gettting older lah, I’m mellowing down. When you reach my age, you will soften too.” So he said. “Nahh, no way!”, I bellowed. Never, I thought in my head, Avril Lavigne was the softest I could imagine ever reaching, but never wimpy-Westlife-fy-soft! N-E-V-E-R!

Now, I apparently should eat my words. Because I actually thought the Hannah Montana movie did not suck. WHAT?! I hear you.

Saving Miley/Hannah for later, let me see, the signs of me growing older characteristically were popping up as my years of university life reached its end. I discovered my machoism did have its rather sensitive side when I almost, I said ALMOST, ended up with tears welling up in my eye sockets when watching the heart-wrenching story of Grace is Gone. Then, worse, my so-called machoism totally gave way in Bridge To Terabithia, because when AnnaSophia Robb’s enchanting Leslie Burke died, there I was in a minimal yet existing amount of tears, clutching tightly my pillow. Shit. Damn you, AnnaSophia. Why did you have make Leslie so darn lovable?

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I think a more obvious sign, quite a crowning moment of mellowness glory, is when I started to obliviously play, then replay afew couple of times more, a Westlife song, “Us Against the World”. I’ve never accepted any Westlife song in my playlist since the brilliant “Flying Without Wings”, let alone replay a HidupSelatan track quite a number of times. I remember that jackass Felix laughing his ass shit off when he hanged out in my room & heard my iTunes playing Westlife. So, with my bro’s words years back coming back to bite my ass, the thought of me apparently, finally, getting a little “softer” with age hit me.

Sure, my favourite is still the awesome punkness of Paramore, I still love Lifehouse (though they have mellowed down too) & Muse’s head-banging “A Map of Problematique” is at the top of my iTunes play count along with Coldplay’s “Lovers in Japan”, but the fact that I was listening to Westlife more than just a couple of times, almost instinctively & without realization, means something. Sure, I maintained some level of my machoism enjoying super-macho movies like 300 & the ka-boomness of Terminator Salvation. But I also very much loved the blissful romantic cheese that is The Notebook.

Since I have watched every other summer movie, & Monsters vs Aliens was full, she pulled me to watch The Hannah Montana Movie, featuring the girl with the shitty yucky vocals, Miley Cyrus.

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To be frank, it was obviously a movie for Montana fans, & I was wa-a-ay too macho (so I thought) for Hannah-who?-Montana, but I was surprised, almost shocked, to find that my mellowness level has shot down so much that I actually thought the movie did not suck. The hip-hop “Hoedown Throwdown” moment was infectiously enjoyable, & “The Climb” finale scene was surprisingly quite fitting, though the execution of some snippets could have been better. I mean, did they really need to show Travis grinning at Miley like, a million times again & again? Yes, the acting chops of Billy Ray Cyrus were horrible to watch, & the plot is silly (about rediscovering her true Miley self, only to go back to being Hannah Montana, wtf?) but no one really cares since her fans will eat it up anyway. The fact is Miley Cyrus, as much as I dislike her, actually is quite endearing as a likeable Miley Stewart/Hannah Montana. This movie only cements my belief that she should really just stick to acting, since she sings like a constipated walrus on helium.

Not that the movie was not forgettable, it was, even with some cute cameos from Tyra Banks & Taylor Swift (& her even more beautiful Taylor Koa). But yeah, the Hannah Montana movie did not suck. Leslie Burke. Westlife. The Notebook. Hannah Montana.

“Getting older lah, I’m mellowing down…”

Boom clap. Boom de clap de clap. Pop it, lock it, polka dot it. Countrify then hip-hop it. Put your hawk in the sky move side to side. Jump to the left, stick it, glide!

Amy Adams & Coldplay Made My Day

Okay, everyone should know by now that Star Trek currently still holds a rather healthy lead over the other “summer blockbusters”. A truly deserved one, it was pure fun, entertainment, wonderfully-paced action, & the perfect summer popcorn flick.

Terminator Salvation, I guess, pretty much scored in terms of being an edge-of-your-seats action-packed bazooka-ish-filled 2 hours extravaganza. & they left it there.

Film Review Terminator Salvation

Me & Bryce, we gonna stick with this expression for the whole movie, yeah. Not like we’ve got much else to do anyway, eh?

Some pretty slick & fantastic action scenes that then were overwhelmed by the overboard noise decibels & number of big-ass explosions left me rather breathless & tired, but nevertheless midly entertained. Still, 2 of my favourites, Christian Bale & the supremely-talented Bryce Dallas Howard, were brutally underutilized, with zero character development, & McG deserves the death penalty for that, if not for the LOL-CGI-Arnold or the laughable ridiculous ending to the storyline. In a nutshell, it went from boom-boom-pow!!! to bleh.

Pushing blockbusters aside, I finally watched Memento afew weeks back, which was a storytelling masterpiece by the Nolan brothers yet again, while Emily Blunt shines in The Young Victoria. Another riveting political fest came in the form of Frost/Nixon, which had some of the most dramatically captivating acting performances from the cast.

& after more than a month of a constant weekly dosage of summer blockbuster releases, what has stayed in my mind the most?

Night at the Museum 2: Battle of the Something-ians-wtf-ever.

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Me likes me women feisty!

I must reiterate that the only reason to watch this weaker sequel is the ever-delightful Amy Adams as an awesomely feisty Amelia Earhart with a sparkling screen presence & that distracting curvature of her bloody cute butt. But in that final scene, when the “modern” bespectacled-long-haired Amy Adams appeared in front of this wanker called Ben Stiller, with the wonderful surprise of Coldplay’s “Life in Technicolor” playing in the background, all combined to serve us quite possibly the most memorable scene of the summer, for me at least. The perfect song used perfectly in a perfect scene with the perfect sweetheart that is Amy Adams. With the perfect cute bum.

Should have called it the Amy Adams show, or even the Amy Adams Butt Show, rather than Battle of the Something-ians-wtf-ever.

Curtains for Season 8

Quick update: Amy Adams is irresistably endearing, totally lovable, absolutely adorable! She (& her cute butt) are the only reasons to watch Night at the Museum 2.

Who cares who won? It was not the huge upset everyone thinks it was, come on, Adam does not deserve to win any more than Kris. It was basically choosing between his over-the-top wailing or Kris Allen’s limited vocal abilities, & the quality of this season is nothing compared to the awesome Season 7. What matters is the final results episode being kick-ass, & boy it was, I have got to admit! Really a total reverse of the performance episode, & who do we have to thank for a memorable end to Season 8? David Cook & Kara DioGuardi, & not forgetting Carrie Underwood’s very-welcomed presence & appearances throughout the season. So here’s a quick recap of what I thought was some of the best, worst & just plain memorable from a riveting suspiciously-conspired “ding-dong” Season 8.

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Best Idol Performances:

1. Danny Gokey leading the way with “Somebody to Love” during the Hollywood group stages. Gokey was absolutely spectacular
2. Adam Lambert performing “Mad World” the first time, song choice of the season (& no screaming-wailing-screeching-whatever, thank God!)
3. Allison Iraheta with a mind-blowing rendition of “Alone”. If she did that in a finale…
4. Kris Allen‘s cool saved-his-lucky-arse “Heartless”, not exactly creative, but excellent comparatively. Btw, I don’t think his “Falling Slowly” was outstanding as everyone thinks, probably because I thought the original was just untouchable

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Best Guest Performances:

1. David Cook‘s stunning “Permanent”, showing Season 8 what a true AI winner is all about. Indeed the best idol winner alongside Underwood & a slowly languishing Clarkson
2. Jordin Sparks‘ powerful “Battlefield” with Ryan Tedder. Ama-a-a-zing! Fier-r-rce!
3. Carrie Underwood‘s “Home Sweet Home”, the best & only worthy performance in the top two finals episode

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Best Duet Performances:

1. Adam Lambert & Allison Iraheta‘s sizzling chemistry in “Slow Ride”
2. Kris Allen & Keith Urban, nice surprise, “Kiss A Girl”

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Most Shitty Performance:

1. “No Boundaries” both by Adam & Kris in the finale. Yet another exceptionally shitty AI ballad. How I miss the best ones like “A Moment Like This” & “I Believe”… 
2. Paula Abdul‘s guest performance. OMG what crap
3. Miley Cyrus attempting to sing live on the Idol stage with “The Climb”. Yucks

Best Vocals, what AI is really supposed to be about:

Danny Gokey, hands-down. Poor choice of songs, attempts & a sliding momentum spelled his end.

Best Guest Mentor:

Jamie Foxx! Fantastic energy, sincere mentoring

Cutest Idol:

Carrie Underwood? Alexis Grace! Really really loved her look. Allison Iraheta me likes very much too, minus some wardrobe misfits. Dunno what the judges were talking about, I thought she had loads of attitude, rock feistiness &…uh, well she really is cute!

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Idols that should have gone home much earlier:

1. Scott MacIntyre. Sorry, really dull voice, too many sympathy votes
2. Lil Rounds. Bleh

Idol that went home too early:

Alexis Grace. Cute, petite, soulful, & should have been given more time

Best Idol Studio Recorded Version:

Matt Giraud‘s “You Found Me”. 10 times better than what he screeched live in the show, 20 times better than the original

Best Season 8 Moment:

I was tempted to say Cowell’s bulging eyes & “wow” mouth when Bikini Girl appeared in the finale, but Kara DioGuardi kicking the implants shit outta Bikini Girl with not just her singing, but her own even-hotter bikini-strip-down, was completely totally OWNING!

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Most Excruciating Things you must try to forget from Season 8:

1. Adam Lambert’s rendition of “Ring of Fire”. Major jaw-dropping ball-twisting weirdness
2. Tatiana Del Toro. Oh the horror
3. Bikini Girl. Ewww
4. Adam Lambert’s tongue & testicles-defying pants

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Now I’m off to rewatch David Cook’s heart-felt performance in the fantastic finale results episode again…no harm dropping by for a short sneak peek at DioGuardi’s bikini bod too…

Out with the Old, In with the New

Movie updates: Angels & Demons was an improved thrilling effort compared to Da Vinci, but at the moment the summer belongs to the pretty darn awesome Star Trek. Watching out for Terminator Salvation, Potter & Transformers 2, but I would like Night at the Museum 2’s nonsense fun first.

Ladies & fellow wankers, these are the few final weeks & days before my university life comes to an end, assuming everything goes according to plan of course. I have many things to be extremely pissed about, even more to reminisce of, & only a handful to be happy about.

Let me just get one thing out of my system. The last few weeks of academic education just before the finals hit us usually corresponds to the many deadlines of semester-long projects of our various courses, or in other words, stress time for me as I assume my normal additional role of chief editor of group project reports & presentations. If I were to express myself here just a couple of weeks back, I could safely argue that perhaps only 10 percent of that entry would consist of non-expletive vocabulary (perhaps only for transition & sentence structure purposes). The amount of exasperation, disappointment & lost of respect for particular team members in some particular group projects I suffered was mounting dangerously towards blatant fury levels. Some were downright lazy, some did not have any common sense, some I had always thought to be high-scoring hardworking ones but turned out to be unashamedly irresponsible, some were stupid, & some were stupid but think themselves to be someone of Einstein blood with Obama authority. Hey, I myself admit I am a lazy son of a bitch when it comes to studies but at least I am responsible & do not go near fucking up other people’s work. Thank God for the dependable excellent members. Well, fortunately perhaps, I never got to finish that entry, owing a thanks to the shitty speed (or lack of any connection whatsoever) of my TECHNOLOGY university’s internet.

So out with that, let’s move on.

The American Idol finale was a total let-down wasn’t it? The most disappointing top two among what was initially looking like a promising top 5, with the consistently annoying & self-indulgent Adam Lambert & mundane weak Kris Allen giving performances not fit for an AI finale. Which kinda only reinforced my belief that Gokey should have been on the stage that night to tapao all of them kao kao, with Iraheta deserving 2nd spot. Booo.

So, very much out with that!

When it comes to phones, this bloke over here always stuck with all-round functionality, practicality, price range & a simple but must-be-stylish looks. From my first Moto C350, I ventured into Sony Ericsson’s T630, going on to valiantly protect my loyalty with Sony through the K700 & the K750. During internship back in 2008, I finally got tired of all the functions offered in a phone that I rarely & sometimes never use anyway. I had my iPod for music, & I had her Canon for photographing, so it was back to the basics of phone calling & messaging. So what to spend on then? Why not the sleek refined killer looks of the Motorola RAZR2 V9 Black? Adding into the whole feel was that curious tiny sensation of flipping a phone to receive or end calls. So, out went half of my internship savings for the V9 (with the other half going to my LL16 guitar).

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& out went half of my internship investment in barely 10 months when my V9 was stolen just a week ago from my hostel room. French. United. Connection. Kingdom. Oh the anguish. Blatant fury levels came barging through all over again.

To cut the story short, I have resorted back to my old preferences of functionality, & more importantly this time around, price limits considering I am not ready to approach another heartache of losing a 1.4k phone again. So I’ve settled with SE’s T700 with an insanely awesome price of 600 bucks, reconciliating with Sony. This is my first below-1k phone, & honestly I am so far very much enjoying myself with the all-round functions, awesome phone interface & more importantly the simple underrated but stylish executive slim design of the T700. SE have really came out with an impressive T-Series reboot model here; don’t forget its fantastic price tag too.

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Comparing my new phone to the old stolen one, it is like losing Jessica Alba & getting a brand new Anne Hathaway. Sort of. & me really likes Hathaway.

So you see, just as I started, I indeed have many things to be extremely pissed about, even more to reminisce of, & only a handful to be happy about.

The happy things? Too personal to relate here, but trust me, they are worth it. =)

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