Cool Stuff Sunday

The bloody Oscar nominations are out and I am SO HAPPY because Tanna has been nominated for Best Foreign Language Film! I’m also stoked for Land of Mine, a Scandinavian film on the clearing of landmines from the coastlines of Europe after the second World War, and the fact that Arrival (a genre film) has been given a nod for Best Feature. Literally cried that Lin-Manuel Miranda has the chance to become the youngest EGOT recipient ever for his track How Far I’ll Go from the Moana soundtrack, and that Lion–an Australian film!–has been recognised across multiple categories. Speaking of Lion, are you wondering why Dev Patel has been relegated to the Best Supporting Actor nominee when he is clearly a lead? Take a look at this piece by Stephen A Russell for SBS on the push for a new category to recognise the contribution of stellar casts

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I grew up listening to a pretty eclectic collection of music thanks to my punk Dad and my hippie Mum. Van Morrison was on frequent rotation, and I know that my mum will weep desperately when he stops making music (ie dies because he’ll never stop tbh). Anyway, BBCRadio ran a program last week on the influence of Van’s incredible career, and it is magic (Glen Hansard is my foreverking and I never tire of his rendition of Into The Mystic). If you’re a Brown Eyed Girl like me, catch it before the link expires on February 20!

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Adaptations are swell when they’re done right. But with such a wealth of top-notch literature coming out of Australia, why aren’t we (or any other filmmaking country for that matter) optioning more of it for screen? Mark Poole looked into this over at The Guardian back in 2014, but it’s just as relevant today.

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Anne Gracie is by far one of my favourite romance writers, and all-round excellent human being. Over on her blog, she’s got tips on procrastination, beating perfectionism and getting on with your writing. Thanks Anne!

Cool Stuff Sunday

Kicking off today with this blistering piece over on Junkee about just how important intersectional feminism is ❤

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The Urban List has done up a handy (and also Expedia-sponsored) list of tips for when you’re thinking about planning your next trip overseas. Get packing!

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When I was roadtripping around England with my Mum, we stopped in Winchester for a number of reasons. One of them was to glimpse the famed Round Table of the Arthurian Legends, but as luck would have it, The Great Hall was closed the day we passed through. Good job, life. Anyway, if the words “arthurian legends” or “round table” mean nothing to you, The Conversation has enlisted Arthurian scholar Amy Brown to talk us through the basics of the stories.

For good measure, here’s the ridiculous but infinitely watchable trailer for Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur adaptation, set for release in March.

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Are you vaguely terrible with money? Perhaps you’re like me and have almost always none because shitty wage + outrageous cost of living is fucked? Here are eight tips to help you kick your year off right.

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I am literally dying with excitement about these 12 Australian films to catch in 2017. Lion was by far one of the most moving and honest things I’ve ever seen, so I can’t wait to see what else is in store for filmgoers this year.

Cool Stuff Sunday: bumper edition

So for the first time in months, I haven’t posted for two Sundays in a row 😦 I AM SORRY LOYAL HUMANS, I was very very not alive after a major work project/event and several uni deadlines happened in the space of ten days. My gift to you is a GIGANTIC edition of Cool Stuff Sunday today, so enjoy many ridiculous things that I’ve found over the last fortnight. You’re welcome.

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I am a very annoying, affectionate person. My friends both love and hate me if we haven’t seen each other in a while, because one of the ways I express emotional reactions is by touching another human being, i.e. I will hug them for a very long time and smoosh their beautiful faces. Anyway, Mental_Floss has put together some “rules” (i really don’t know why they’re calling them rules but ok M_F, you do you) about touch, and how important it can be in alleviating some symptoms of depression.

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Speaking of it, a new study has found that depression may actually originate–at least for some people–in our immune systems. Take a look at this article over at the Sydney Morning Herald for one of the most interesting reads on neuroscience this week.

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The TOM HANKS TAKEDOWN over on Buzzfeed was amazingly gripping for a roasting of one of my faves??? Charting the rise and fall of Hanx is pretty spectacular, and so insanely in-depth that I’m left wondering if, in fact, the author has done their entire PhD on him. (Nice one if so).

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It’s November so as is my body’s wont, I’m getting itchy feet again. I’ve seen some berserk travel deals in the last month, and finally investigated what the heck an error fare is thanks to my buddy Tofu Traveler, who has some excellent tips for getting your cheap on when planning your next trip.

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R U INTROVERT? Have some tips about doing life.

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Who loves Beyonce? Me! Most of the time. If you do too, take a look at these mash-ups of Bey tunes with other excellent tunes. I’m particularly stoked with the Partition/Bitch Better Have My Money track, and the Halo/Fire Meet Gasoline mash-up is scratching at my insides, but basically these are all magnificent.

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Not part of the Beyhive?

Head over to the NME for a collection of Bowie’s isolated vocals on some of his most masterful pieces. What magic we have lost this year 😦

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An important discussion on what we need to talk about with our children when we talk about consent and body autonomy. 

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Pete Souza, the man behind the lens over the course of Barack Obama’s presidency has shared some of his favourite ever photographs of the outgoing President (jesus that’s hard to write). Wonderful, funny, heartwarming and poignant. I’m gonna miss this guy.

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Am absolutely loving my rewatch of Sailor Moon currently, and stumbled across these 15 things you might not know about good old meatball head. GET IT TOGETHER, TUXEDO MASK!

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And to take us out, here’s a thing. I saw A Monster Calls earlier in the week, and it annihilated what was left of me after a pretty huge fortnight. It was an absolutely beautiful retelling of Patrick Ness’ work, but make sure you take someone who’s going to hold your hand while you heave wracking sobs next to them.

Cool Stuff Sunday

Get yourself some life lessons by the women of Jane Austen over at Verily. All awesome and true.

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I’ve always been rather intrigued by Arthur Amon’s theory of love. He posits that if you ask these 36 questions to a complete stranger–or someone you fancy a bit–and then stare into their eyes for four minutes (…………………………. that seems unnecessarily lengthy), then you’re pretty likely to fall in love. Looking at the questions, they seem like the kinds of things you’d share with someone you’re in a relationship over time, so it’s actually just the Express Lane version of intimacy. Anyway. Spotted this successful crash test of the theory, and was spurred on to find out the success rate of the 36. Find some other interesting results here, here and here. This one is probably my fave, but this was a punch to the feels.

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I am a massive massive fan of Daniels’ bloody insane film, Swiss Army Man, and a fan of Daniel Radcliffe (how can a HP fanatic not be tho??). It’s really cool to listen to DanRad chat to The Empire Film Podcast about his prep for playing corpse bride, Manny; his general excellence in stunts; and amazing insight into his own progression as an actor since the Potter films (special mention to Kill Your Darlings and Horns!). I’m also now super pumped to see Imperium and #thesweatyrevenant???????????????????? BIZARRE. Go listen.

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It wouldn’t be a Cool Stuff Sunday without a Shakey reference, so head on over to McSweeneys for this ~amazing~ list of The Housewives of Shakespeare Tag Lines. Short and sweet!

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Yesterday I watched this heart-stopping short film, Borrowed Time. Set aside 6 minutes and do yourself a favour.

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And to round off the afternoon, here are 13 great questions to kick around at your next book club session.

Cool Stuff Sunday

COOL SHAKESPEARE VIDEO. ’nuff said.

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Over at Writer’s Bloc, Elizabeth Flux talks about writer bios, and how to un-train yourself from the bad habits we all get into in attempting to not look/be arrogant about our achievements.

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More adaptations you say? UNPOSSIBLE. And yet, here by the grace of SBS is another 20+-item list of pages coming to life onscreen in the near future. YES PLEASE.

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TRAILER TIIIIIIIME. I would like to marry any and all leads thanks.

UMMMM considering how kickass the teaser trailer was, I am now beyond help about this series.

 

*cries* *dies* *repeat for infinity*
I don’t quite have the words to express my feelings about every single thing about Atlanta. I just need September 6 to hurry up.

 

This is up on Netflix but I haven’t had a chance to watch it yet and I’m practically crying every second that passes that I haven’t seen it. SO YOU’RE ALL GONNA WATCH THE TRAILER AND LIKE IT OKAY? (plus also omg my husband Shameik Moore from Dope! *more crying/dying*)

Cool Stuff Sunday

In celebration of my first week back at uni, please take a look at this guide to determining whether you’re stressed, or experiencing anxiety. I was surprised to learn some of my own symptoms point to the one I wasn’t expecting. Take care of yourselves, babes!

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child came out today! I nearly betrayed my bookstore roots and went to K-Mart to save $20 but how could I betray my OG fandom like that? In any case, I’m 65 pages in, loving it, and also weeping at any and all references to the original HP series. “Best to do it at a run if you’re nervous” absolutely destroyed me, and this is gonna be a tough week both for my emotions and my studies. Whoops. ANYWAY. In the most depressing news to ever find out while mid-Cursed Child, JK Rowling has all but confirmed that this is Harry’s last hurrah.

Please prepare my funeral, because I will actually implode with grief when I close this book.

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YA rom-coms! How does life get any better?! Take a look at these 10 new Australian YA reads and get your god damn mitts on ’em!

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So, the Ghostbusters reboot was super fun, and like so many others I fell deeply in love with Holtzmann, played by Kate McKinnon. This article over on Junkee takes a look at how Sony ‘Dumbledored’ her character, and how queer representation still isn’t where it should be in 2016 (no shit).

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This article needs a solid edit, but YES TO ALL OF THESE REASONS WHy New Zealand is better than Australia. I would live there in a heartbeat, and reading this makes me want to visit again. I miss that peace.

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Writers! Enjoy this great 10 Cool Writing Tips graphic. Simple and smart. DO IT.

Cool Stuff Sunday

Adaptations are probably my most favourite thing in the world. They combine one cool thing with another, eg books with film or television, and music underneath. There’s probably nothing better to me than a truly wondrous adaptation (some greats that spring to mind are Ang Lee’s Sense & Sensibility and Life of Pi, Philip Martin’s Birdsong, and of course, HBO’s Game of Thrones–read the book and then tell me the first season isn’t infinitely better). There are a billion others worthy of love, and B&P have released a list of adaptations coming in 2016 to look out for. Yaaaaaassss.

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Grammarly is one of my fave grammar resources, and recently they posted a quick bit about the phrase ‘bad rap’, which is often confused (by me and a whole bunch of you) with ‘bad wrap’. Anyway, I was v excited for the clarification, so go and get learned.

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Speaking of raps, a video is doing the rounds on my FB after the #Brexit vote of British rapper/amazing human being Akala–whom you may remember from the TedX talk I posted recently about Shakespeare & hip hop. He appeared on Frankie Boyle’s Election Autopsy in 2015, and gave this incredible response to the question of racism in Britain.

You can find the full segment on YouTube.

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Lastly, on this cold but kinda nice Sunday, we need to talk about M.I.L.F.$ by Fergie. Here it is if you haven’t seen/heard it. Prepare yourself.

So. I mean. Like. Just. Dang. This is the most ridiculous song I’ve ever heard or seen a video for but I straight up love it. I don’t know what it is. Babes being babes? Celebrating (albeit in the strangest way possible) motherhood and still being ridic hot? Chrissy Teigen (my kween) just being in it? Hugely styled everything? Terrible choreography? Spelling out every word in the second verse? Fergie’s comeback? I don’t even know but I am so ready for this ridiculous album to drop.

Review: The Revenant retires my eyes from the game

I’d heard both good and unpleasant things about Alejandro Iñárritu’s revenge adaptation, The Revenant. I’d heard it compared to Grand Budapest Hotel in that every shot is an artwork, and I’d also heard it was long and boring. What I didn’t know a whole lot about before I went in was the storyworld. I had a basic awareness of the “son of revered man killed by jerk, man seeks slow and torturous death for jerk” plot, but that was kind of it.

So, armed with little knowledge and a bunch of mixed reviews, I strode into the cinema with a sliver of hope. What I got in return was the joy of watching what was unmistakably the most visually sublime piece of artistry I’ve seen in decades, and also the most traumatising. Continue reading

Review: Fifty shades of boredom

There’s been a lot written about the adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey, the blockbuster series by Twilight-lover EL James, and it doesn’t seem like anyone can really agree on much. Some people are fiercely supportive of the material, whereas others cry abuse at every turn. There are those who watch it lightheartedly, laughing at the completely cringetastic dialogue, and those who will shoosh the laughter in frustration (sexual or otherwise). What I will say for Fifty Shades is that, well, it certainly was a film. Continue reading

Review: 113 things I thought watching The Giver

  1. I don’t recall anything about what this movie is supposed to be about except it’s like the wizard of oz in that it changes to colour in the middle
  2. “Memories of the past were erased after The Ruin.” Okay.
  3. Right, there are billions of rules in the new world.
  4. Jonas doesn’t have a last name. Christalmighty what if they have more than one Sarah? THAT’S BOUND TO HAPPEN RIGHT?
  5. Wait, so Jonas sees in colour? And he doesn’t say anything because he doesn’t want to be different..? How the fuck does he know no one else doesn’t see in colour?
  6. They ride cool bikes
  7. OMFG THEY LIVE IN THE SKY LIKE LADY AREN IN GAME OF THRONES THAT’S COOL
  8. YUS ALEXANDER SKARSGAARD YES PLS
  9. A baby that’s crying didn’t qualify to be assigned in some sort of ceremony and knowing the baby’s name isn’t allowed?
  10. They’re jumping through a fountain and Fiona gets wet and now the sexual tension is evident
  11. KATIE HOLMES YOU ARE A BAAAAAAAABE
  12. They discuss their feelings at the table. But not in a loving way, in a This Is How We Do Life way.
  13. CEREMONY OF ANNOUNCEMENT: Holographic Meryl Streep is perfection bye
  14. Wait these guys are only one community out of… how many?
  15. THIS IS VERY HUNGER GAMES
  16. IS MERYL PRESIDENT SNOW
  17. I HOPE SHE IS THAT IS GREAT
  18. Okay they’re clapping with one hand and their knee and I don’t understand what is happening
  19. Okay so people get released to Elsewhere. Elsewhere to me means death thanks to Gabrielle Zevin, so this is… odd.
  20. Impulses to be different are bad but today we’re celebrating the differences? GUYS CHOOSE ONE
  21. OMFG THEY SKIPPED JONAS WHAT DOES THAT MEAN IS IT BECAUSE OF THE COLOUR SEEING THING
  22. Jonas not assigned because he was selected to do something involving pain. HCHristian Grey?
  23. Receiver of Memory…. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN
  24. Okay they’re chanting Jonas and it doesn’t work because chants need monosyllabic names to make it work. That was totally awkward
  25. Jonas is now exempt from every rule except the thing where you have to take medication and he also can’t talk about his training ever but he can also LIE NOW. Makes sense.
  26. AND HE LOOKS LIKE HAN SOLO IN THAT VEST YES PLS
  27. Receiver of Memory training is held on the edge of the island in the sky. Someone’s going to die for sure.
  28. It’s a giant library and I’m okay with that *hearteyes*
  29. Jeff Bridges has no time for Jonas’ shit
  30. Jonas will now receive all the past world’s memory that currently lives inside Jeff Bridges? Do these guys know how memory works or….Jeff Bridges gives literally no fucks and somehow has rendered Jonas unconscious.
  31. The first memory is of snow. And a toboggan. This fucker is just playing with us Australians right?
  32. Now there’s a house with a wreath and a family singing carols. WHO VETTED THESE MEMORIES GOD DAMN HOW IS THIS THE IMPORTANT SHIT?
  33. Jonas is a terrible actor.
  34. If you’re the receiver then I must be……………………………………………….. The Giver……… okay then bye
  35. This is a mythical creature called a hippo said while holding an elephant and it can run really fast because it has five legs alright I’m gonna need y’all to get off the crack cocaine now
  36. HAHAHA A BEE STUNG HIM IN MEMORY
  37. Oooooh Pretty Sunset Over The Water is suuuuuuuper pretty
  38. holy shit now everything is in colour
  39. Colour, race, religion all abolished. Sameness erased jealousy, hatred etc
  40. And Elsewhere is like… right next door.
  41. Okay this acting is horrible. These teenagers are making my ears bleed with their awful awful lack of talent. WHO THE FUCK CAST THESE GUYS
  42. Lol Fiona “saw” the Tree from Elsewhere. Righto.
  43. Diamond hand signs, SHOUT OUT TO JIGGA
  44. They are sliding down a solar panel they will take them vertical at some point but it never goes vertical because ~movies~
  45. Meryl looks so god damn old in this film
  46. Jeff Bridges has no time for Meryl’s shit
  47. Oh no. Jeff Bridges and Meryl used to be a thing and had a baby and now they hate each other because something happened to the baby and Meryl blames Jeff for everything and this is awkieeeeeeeessssssssssss
  48. Plan for Sameness conveniently falls out of a book
  49. There’s a Boundary of Memory…. I don’t understnad what that is
  50. Jeff Bridges is playing the piano and it’s great but Jonas has never heard music before and his reaction is priceless
  51. THE MORNING INJECTIONS REMOVE EMOTIONS HOLY SHIT
  52. Feelings are just fleeting on the surface but emotions are very deep, primal… they linger. Okay Gandhi Jeff Bridges
  53. OMG music memory ❤ Why would anyone want to get rid of this? Yeah bruh, I don’t know either.
  54. Meryl dropping truth bombs about Katie Holmes’ motherly conduct all up in this
  55. Memories are not just about the past. They determine our future… they change things…
  56. omg animals didn’t survive The Ruin?
  57. Oh no it’s pain time
  58. There’s going to be the holocaust or something
  59. omfg poaching
  60. There’s an awful lot of hugging going on between Jonas and Jeff Bridges
  61. OH MY SWEET EVER LOVING GOD HE’S SHOWING THE BABY MEMORIES OF A REAL ELEPHANT THIS IS GON GET MESSY
  62. WAIT IS HE CREATING A MEMORY BASED ON THE MEMORIES HE HAS BEEN GIVEN? THIS IS GREAT
  63. Oh no wait, he just had a dream
  64. Lord jesus now they’re talking about love
  65. Jonas asks if his dad loves him and no one understands and this is the strangest shit ever
  66. He loves the baby. He shows the baby puppies and baths and it’s hurting me
  67. oh no there’s a war scene and this is going to be bad
  68. His friend in the memory died 😦
  69. He’s killing a person in the trees and this is going to be bad
  70. Jonas is now running away from being the Receiver of Memory because of war
  71. Jeff Bridges done fucked up
  72. He’s trying to leave with Fiona and she is not interested soz bruh
  73. Wait now he’s living in a memory?
  74. HAHAHAH TAYLOR SWIFT IS A BRUNETTE AND SHE IS A GHOST WHO WRITES SONGS ON THE PIANO BECAUSE SHE IS A ~MUSICIAN~
  75. Oh no… Taylor Swift was released and now lives in Elsewhere
  76. UMMMMMMMMM THEY JUST KILLED THE BABY AND PUT IT IN A BOX AND GOT PUSHED DOWN A GARBAGE CHUTE WHAT THE FUCK IS FUCKING WRONG WITH THESE FUCKERS
  77. Fiona didn’t take her injection and now she’s falling in love oh my god shutup
  78. oh my god they released Gabe. They’re going to kill Gabe. They’re going to KILL GABE NO WHAT THE FUCK
  79. Okay Katie Holmes is owning her shit in this
  80. Jonas is running away from home right now and of course Drone Pilot is coming to stop him
  81. JONAS JUST PUNCHED DRONE PILOT
  82. So if a Receiver crosses the Boundary of Memory all the memories are set free? I don’t get it. The memories go back to being everyone’s memories? WHAT HAPPENS TO THEM?
  83. MEMORIES OF PROTEST AGAINST OPPRESSIVE REGIMES OMFG
  84. Jonas is going to get Gabe and leave for the Boundary
  85. Now Meryl has brought in their version of the cops
  86. Okay now they’re running with babies and he’s stolen a cop bike cool
  87. dude just rode his bike off the cliff over to elsewhere. I. What…?
  88. EVERYTHING IS SEPIA AGAIN
  89. Fiona and Jeff Bridges are in cages
  90. Drone Pilot sent to find and destroy Jonas and the baby – this is fucked up
  91. JONAS LOCATED NOW WHAT
  92. Drone Pilot under orders, Drone Pilot fighting orders, Drone Pilot not understanding instinctive fighting of orders
  93. Jonas running with baby and diving with a baby and locked to the underside of the drone with a baby
  94. Jonas and baby dropped into raging currents but miraculously baby is alive
  95. This is so unrealistic
  96. I need to read the book
  97. How does this guy have bottles for Gabe?
  98. Fiona is going to be released ruh roh
  99. There is no way a babby could survive these conditions soz
  100. The tower should be there but it’s not there so now Jonas and Gabe are going to freeze to death in the snow. This is dissatisfying beyond words
  101. Fiona is going to die now… OMG SO I WAS RIGHT ELSEWHERE IS DEATH THAT IS CREEPY
  102. Jeff Bridges is telling everyone about love. Meryl is not interested.
  103. Love is just passion that can turn, that can turn into contempt and murder. When people have the freedom to choose, they choose wrong. Every time. MERYL STAHP
  104. THAT BABY IS NOT STILL ALIVE I’M SORRY BUT THAT IS NOT POSSIBLE
  105. Holy shit snow!
  106. Something is sticking out of the snow, is it the tower?
  107. IT’S A FUCKIN’ TOBOGGAN. I AM DYING. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN.
  108. omg Jonas found the boundary omfg it’s like holographic n shiz
  109. IT’S RELEASING. Everything is changing to colour againnnnnnnnn!
  110. HURRY COLOUR FIND THEM FIONA IS ABOUT TO DIE
  111. They’re all getting memories back this is insane, even Meryl wants the memories now
  112. OMG HE FOUND THE HOUSE WHERE THE CAROL-ERS WERE I AM FUCKING DONE

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Review: Enraging butt stuff courtesy of Kingsman

Having never been a huge Bond fan, I go into other spy films with a wary eye. When I saw the trailer for Kingsman: The Secret Service though, I was all in and completely impatient for it’s Australian release date. Who wouldn’t be for Colin Firth as a middle-aged spy in a dapper-as-fuck suit, and some sort of Hunger Games-esque trial for new recruits? (unintentional poetry btw) Continue reading

Review: Big hero ticks for Big Hero 6

There’s nothing I love more than a solid animated film. It harks back to my days as a kid, spending hours at my grandparents house on holiday with my cousins. We would be doing one of about four things: swimming in the pool, taking turns playing CoolBoarders or Tekken on the Playstation, eating something amazing our Nana had made, or watching a Disney film. We always picked which characters we were going to be, and being the oldest girl, I always got to be the princess. Or mermaid. Or samurai. You get the point: I grew up envisaging myself in Disney films. And my love for Disney has endured well into my mid-twenties.

Continue reading