The Final Two Hammer Dracula Movies

Ok, as hard as it for me to say, the quality of the Hammer Horror Dracula movies went down as the series progressed. So much so that it felt that it wasn’t even trying very hard anymore & just trying to cash in on the craze for the Count and the horror genre in general. After the high of Horror Of Dracula we get 5 more movies that continue the series, 3 of which are good. Suddenly they change directions in 1972 and bring the legend to modern times (or the 70s as it was when the movies were released) and we got Dracula A.D. 1972, which except for a few good scenes, is not up to par. Neither is it’s successor The Satanic Rites Of Dracula. First of all, I don’t really feel that Dracula or vampires in¬† general should be connected to Satan. Not so ever in the least. It doesn’t make sense but then some of these movies seem to want to propogate the Christianity myth and hence it made sense for them to do this movie.

The Satanic Rites Of Dracula is my least favourite of the movies as it so boring (so much so that I had to watch in over 3 nights). Dracula is seen very little in this movie too! Four prominent members of society are involved in a cult that conducts Satanic rituals led by a Chinese vampire lady in an English country house. A secret agent investigating them is captured and tortured but he escapes and informs his bosses of the going on before dying. Scotland Yard’s Inspector Murray once again consults noted¬†occult¬†expert Professor Lorrimar Van Helsing. The cult kidnaps the Secret Service secretary Jane and she is bitten by Dracula! How did he get resurrected? Who knows?

Anyways, Murray and his men are joined by a matured Jessica Van Helsing (played here by Joanna Lumley) and investigate the house. Jessica finds Jane chained to a wall, now turned into a vampire, along with a few more female vampires. Jessica is rescued by Murray, who also kills Jane. Van Helsing visits one of the members of the cult, a scientist who used to be his friend, and finds him working on creating a virulent strain of the¬†bubonic plague. A guard knocks Van Helsing out as the scientist is killed but the professor is able to find out that the 23rd of the month, which is the “Sabbath of the Undead” is when the plan is to take place. He finds out that Dracula is alive and heading a property development (built on top of the church yard where Dracula died in the previous film) and confronts him. He tries to shoot Dracula with a silver bullet¬†but is beaten by the Count’s conspirators. Dracula decides that killing Van Helsing would be too simple and has him transferred to the country house. Meanwhile, Jessica, Murray and Torrence, while observing the country house, are attacked by snipers. Torrence is killed, while Murray and Jessica are captured. Murray awakes in the cellar and escapes the clutches of the female vampires, and later Chin Yang just as Dracula arrives with Van Helsing.

Dracula announces to Van Helsing that he intends to turn Jessica into a vampire and make her his bride (he seems to have a thing for her from the previous movie – Dracula in love?) and that he intends to release the plague on humanity. As the 3 remaining cult members object, Dracula’s hypnotic command stops them and causes¬† one of them to break the vial, releasing the bacteria and immediately infecting the minister, causing him horrible suffering. Murray runs in and a fire breaks out as he battles a guard. Murray rescues Jessica asDracula attacks Van Helsing, who escapes through a window into the woods. He lures Dracula into a¬†hawthorn bush¬†‚Äď a symbol of good as it provided Christ with his¬†crown of thorns¬†‚Äď where he is entangled until Van Helsing drives a stake through his heart. The End!

The 9th movie of this series (and 8th to actually feature Dracula) is 1974’s The Legend Of The 7 Golden Vampires. I guess Hammer decided to chuck bringing the Dracula myth to modern times and went back in time for a movie that combines the vampire lore with Kung Fu that was all the craze back in the 70s. We get Peter Cushing but no Christopher Lee as Dracula! Continuity wise, it causes a dilemma. You’ll have to ignore the events in Dracula A.D.1972 – because in that Van Hellsing dies back in the year 1872 whereas here he is alive and kicking in the year 1904! Ok, so we see a Chinese shaman named Kah, who goes to Transylvania in 1804 and summons Count Dracula from his crypt (I guess we don’t know how he is resurrected here either).¬†Kah, aTaoist¬†monk and High Priest of the Seven Golden Vampires in rural China, goes on to tell the Count that the Golden Vampire’s power is fading and he needs him to restore their former glory. Dracula considers the offer and accepts on one condition; that he takes on Kah’s body and image to escape his castle which has become his prison. So despite the latter’s pleas, Dracula merges with Kah in a cloud of smoke and then proceeds to rural China.

Many years later in 1904, Professor Laurence Van Helsing is lecturing in Chungking University on the legends of Chinese vampires. He tells the gathered students of an unknown rural village that has been terrorized by a cult of seven known as ‘Golden Vampires’ for many years. The legends goes on about a lone farmer who went to rescue his wife from the vampires but is too late to save her as she is drained of blood. He grans a golden bat medallion, seen as the symbolic lifeforce of these vampires, from one of them and runs away. The high priest (Dracula in Kah’s body) orders the vampires to chase him, aided by some zombies who arise from their graves. The farmer puts the medallion against a Buddha idol and is killed as the vampires catch up with him. However when the vampire tries to retrieve his medallion, he is destroyed by flames on touching the Buddha statue.¬†Van Helsing goes onto say that he is positive the village still exists and is still terrorised by the remaining six vampires. The students all disagree with the legend being true and walk out. However one man, Hsi Ching, meets Van Helsing in the evening and tells him that the farmer was his grandfather and that the village in the story is his own ancestral village. He wants the professor to help him destroy the vampires.

Van Helsing agrees and embarks with his son; Leyland Van helsing, Hsi Ching and his seven kung-fu trained siblings on a dangerous journey funded by a wealthy widow named Vanessa Buren (the sexy Norwegian actress Julie Ege) who Leyland and two of Ching’s siblings saved from an attack by the Tongs. On the long journey they have to defeat and kill off the Tongs and a romance is kindles between Leyland and the youngest sibling and only girl, Mai Kwei, as well as an attraction that starts between Hsi Ching and Vanessa. Later they are ambushed by the six remaining vampires in a cave along with the undead. The group kills 3 of the vampires and several undead in an exciting battle at the end of which the remaining 3 vampires and their undead retreat. he following morning, the party reach the village, partly ruined but still populated, and prepare to make their final stand. They use wooden stakes as barriers and digging a large trench around them filled with flammable liquid. That night the vampires & the undead attack the village leaving almost everyone dead. Vanessa is bitten and becomes a vampire and seduces Hsi Ching, biting his neck. Him not wanting to turn, kills both himself and Vanessa on a pointed stake. All but one brother is left alive as the battle ends and only one vampire remains but he captures the sister and rides off to the temple.

Leyland purses them to the temple and rescues the sister from being tied to the alter and Van Helsing and some men kill the vampire. Then Kah approaches and Van Helsing recognizes Dracula and calls him out which the count does so. In the ensuing struggle, Van Helsing succeeds in stabbing Dracula with a spear through the heart. Weakened, the Count collapses onto one of the altars and gradually decays to bones. The spear that killed Dracula is weakened and collapses, smashing the vampires skull. Soon, there is nothing left of of the Count, save for his dusty remains and the blood-stained spear. Van Helsing sighs with relief as the nightmare of Count Dracula is finally over.

While Satanic Rites is boring, full of plot holes and downright dull with a bad script, the final movie is a lot more fun & energetic due to the kung0fu angle. However the movie suffers from laughable makeup and special effects that even in 1974 was ridiculed. And Chinese vampires & undead skip & hop as they run! Ridiculous! and the extras are so stupid as they run in the battle. Both movies have topless women, the latter a bit more when the Chinese women are laid to be killed. Worst of all is the fact that you didn’t need Dracula in the last movie and they got a piss poor replacement for Christopher Lee. But the latter movie is so much more fun to watch. I’d give The Satanic Rites Of Dracula a 5 out of 10 and The Legend Of the 7 Golden Vampires a 6.5 out of 10!

Arsenal 1 Chelsea 2

Another match against a title contender, another reminder that Arsene Wenger’s current side is well below the quality level of the last few years. I dare say that this is the weakest side that Arsenal has fielded ever since 1998 – when I started supporting Arsenal. Truth be told, and it hurts me to say this, but a few of the Gunners are just nancy boys who can’t fight for the ball on the pitch. The talent is missing and so is the grit. And guess what – Arsene you only have yourself to blame? It’s your stupid attitude that has seen some of the best talents leave the club and not make the club attractive for major talent to want to come here! Yes you have made the club a lot of money by focusing on youth and developing them – and then they leave and win trophies elsewhere, while we haven’t won anything in ages.

Chelsea held off London rivals Arsenal at Stamford Bridge to claim their first home win of 2013 at the fourth attempt.
Juan Mata drove in a shot to put the Blues in front, although the visitors could justifiably claim there had been a foul against them in the build-up. Keeper Wojciech Szczesny brought down Ramires and Frank Lampard scored from the spot for Chelsea’s second. Forward Theo Walcott’s clinical sidefoot finish gave the Gunners hope but the hosts held on for the win. Arsenal had been overwhelmed in the first half and when manager Arsene Wenger sent them out early for the second half, it was easy to imagine what the Frenchman’s half-time mood had been.

After the interval, the Gunners began to look a threat at last. Centre-back Per Mertesacker and striker Walcott had efforts on goal, both shooting straight at Cech, while Giroud mistimed a header before the visitors pulled a goal back. And so, stuck at 6th place. Great going Wenger!

Battlestar Galactica : Blood & Chrome

The saga before the show ever got to see the light of day was almost equivalent to a sci-fi opera, with many false starts and cancellations that us fans were wondering just what is it going to take for this maligned franchise & show to finally come out. Initially supposed to be a full fledged prequel tv series to the much celebrated & award winning re-imagined science fiction space opera Battlestar Galactica (2003 series) and also a sequel to the short lived Caprica (which itself was a prequel to BSG). Instead it almost didn’t see the light of day but finally it was greenlit as a webseries by Syfy and saw it’s release in November of 2012 as a 10 webisode series on¬†Machinima.com and on it’s Youtbe channel ¬†will also air as a televised movie in February 2013 on¬†Syfy.

As for continuity in the BSG universe, this is how to goes – for someone not familiar with the show – it’s like this; BSG was shot first, Caprica is set 60 years before the events in BSG and Blood & Chrome is 20 years after the end of Caprica and 40 years before the beginning of BSG)! Got it? Good.

So the prequel to BSG but sequel to Caprica, is set in the tenth year of the¬†First Cylon War, the story follows¬†William Adama, a young pilot just graduated from the Academy, assigned to the newest¬†battlestar¬†in the¬†Colonial fleet: the¬†Galactica. Ensign Adama, played by British actor Luke Pasqualino, is a cocky & talented pilot is disappointed when instead of being assigned to a viper, to a¬†Raptor¬†transport ship named¬†Wild Weasel. He meets his surly co-pilot Coker Fasjovik (Ben Cotton), who is cynical and interested only in leaving the military, as his tour of duty ends in a month. Coker finds Adama’s eagerness irritating and nicknames him Husker. Galactica’s Commander Nash briefs the two on their first mission together, a routine “milk run” sending cargo to the¬†Scorpia Fleet Shipyards¬†and returning with supplies for the Galactica. It is a four-day trip during which they are to avoid enemy contact of any kind. While preparing for the mission, Adama and Coker find out that their cargo isn’t supplies but a civilian software engineer, Dr. Beka Kelly (Lili Borden). They depart, but upon leaving Galactica’s¬†DRADIS¬†range, Dr. Kelly hands them new orders from the Admiralty. They are to rendezvous with the¬†Archeron, another¬†battlestar, in an area bordering Cylon space. They are also to take all further orders from Dr. Kelly. As they travel to their destination, Dr. Kelly reveals that she worked for¬†Graystone Industries, designing the upgrade for the Cylons’ MCP “brain” chip. When they reach the rendezvous point, they discover that the Archeron was ambushed and destroyed. A¬†Cylon raider¬†appears and attacks.

Thanks to Adama’s risky but excellent piloting, the¬†Wild Weasel¬†narrowly escapes the Cylon raider. Despite Coker’s desire to head home, Dr. Kelly has them break radio silence to send a transmission; they receive an immediate response with yet another set of coordinates. En route Dr. Kelly tells Adama that she was married to famed marine Ezra Barzel (from the Hebrew prophet Ezra and the Hebrew word for “Iron”), who inspired many young people to join the Academy. They arrive at the coordinates to find a fleet of “ghost ships”, Colonial vessels assumed to have been destroyed in battle that are now camped out hiding in Cylon territory. The commander of one of the ghost ships (Jill Teed)- an older Orion-class battlestar called¬†Osiris¬†– assembles a small fleet for a mission. They will bring Dr. Kelly to embedded Colonial operatives on Djerba, a former winter resort planet located in Cylon teritory that holds Dr. Kelly’s objective. Dr. Kelly requests that Adama and Coker continue to escort her in their raptor. Coker overhears the commander say that the mission’s personnel must be volunteers (i.e. it is a¬†suicide mission); he is not pleased. On the launch deck, Coker runs into his old friend Jim Kirby (Sebastian Spence), who was presumed dead after his ship was badly damaged in battle. Kirby asks Coker whether his wife has remarried, and Coker informs him that she has not and is raising their son. Kirby is overjoyed to learn that he has a child. As the mission fleet departs, the commander of the¬†Osiris¬†tells the crew that the fate of the war depends on Dr. Kelly reaching her objective. Just after the fleet jumps into Djerba’s orbit, a¬†Cylon Basestar¬†appears.

The basestar and the Osiris exchange fire as the¬†Wild Weasel¬†and its Viper escorts, one of whom is Kirby, fly toward Djerba. They are pursued by three Cylon raiders which the Colonials manage to destroy, though Kirby deserts midway through the battle to go home to see his family. Meanwhile, the¬†Osiris¬†is heavily outnumbered by the Cylon basestar and raiders. When its nuclear weapons jam, the commander decides to fly it into the basestar and manually detonate the weapons, destroying both the Cylon ships and the¬†Osiris. The¬†Wild Weasel¬†crash-lands onto the surface of Djerba. Adama, Coker and Dr. Kelly abandon their raptor and trek through Djerba’s harsh wind and snow, following a signal with Dr. Kelly’s communicator. They track the signal to a huge cave, where they discover their escort unit dead from mysterious non-artillery wounds. Suddenly the cave floor collapses and plunges them into a dark underground chamber. Strange noises surround them and a large snake-like creature lunges out and bites Coker. As Coker struggles to contain the monster, a man rappels into the chamber and kills the snake. He introduces himself as Xander Toth (John Pyper-Ferguson), the only surviving escort. He explains that the snakes, which killed his unit, were created by Cylons doing half animal/half machine experiments. Toth has been alone in the cave for some time and is slightly mentally unstable, prone to unpredictable aggressive outbursts. Nevertheless, he has scouted a route to Dr. Kelly’s objective. They leave the cave and stop at a cliff overlooking a seemingly abandoned resort compound.

Toth takes Adama, Coker and Dr. Kelly into the abandoned resort, where Toth says the Cylons previously stored “spare parts”. He has rigged the perimeter with¬†mines¬†and set up a generator inside to keep heat running. Dr. Kelly later confides to Adama that her husband’s status as a war hero was completely fabricated by the Colonial army. He did not singlehandedly defeat a Cylon platoon; rather, his exploratory mission was felled by¬†friendly fire. She emphasizes that the war must end, with which Adama agrees before tenderly touching her. She tells him that “you will regret this” and they sleep together. Shortly after, Adama finds Coker deftly playing a¬†grand piano, and Coker quickly surmises what has happened between Adama and Dr. Kelly. Just as he begins telling Adama that Dr. Kelly’s objective is more than it seems, one of Toth’s mines explodes and¬†Cylon centurions¬†approach the compound. Adama and Coker search the compound for Dr. Kelly, who disappeared when the Cylons arrived. Toth is shot multiple times by a centurion; his fate remains unknown. Meanwhile, Dr. Kelly stumbles into a cold storage room filled with human body parts – likely the “spares” Toth mentioned in the previous episode. She hides inside from a centurion, who finds her when she exhales loudly. Instead of killing her, the centurion scans at length a¬†microchip¬†dog tag¬†she wears around her neck. Adama and Coker burst in and Coker shoots the centurion. The centurion crashes to the floor and emits a high-frequency wail, which Dr. Kelly explains as screaming – the Cylons can feel pain. Coker puts the centurion out of its misery and the three set off to look for Toth.

When Coker wants to send a rescue signal for the mortally wounded Toth, Adama and Dr. Kelly instead insist that they press on toward Dr. Kelly’s objective. Coker demands to know Dr. Kelly’s mission, and she finally explains that she will upload a virus to the Cylons’ communications array. Once they find the array, Dr. Kelly begins her upload, but Coker shoots her and disarms Adama when he sees a Battlestar on the communications screen – Dr. Kelly is transmitting information about the ghost fleet to the Cylons. She shoots Coker several times and justifies her betrayal: she believes that the war will only end when humans negotiate with the Cylons, who she thinks value life more than humans do. Accepting that Dr. Kelly is a traitor, Adama destroys the communications unit. He drags a badly wounded Coker out of the array, leaving Dr. Kelly behind. As Adama and Coker wait for a rescue to take them back to Galactica, Coker shows Adama a picture of his wife before passing out. In the communications array, a quasi-humanoid Cylon (voiced by Tricia Helfer) tells Dr. Kelly that her enlightened view of Cylons does not change their hatred of her, then snaps her neck. Back on Galactica, Commander Nash explains that the seemingly failed mission actually went as planned. Colonial command had anticipated Dr. Kelly’s betrayal, and by the time the Cylons followed the communication, the ghost fleet was long gone and was able to destroy multiple defenseless Cylon bases. Nash tells Adama the casualties of the¬†Osiris¬†were worth the victory, for successes like these keep civilians supporting the war effort. Disillusioned, Adama signs off on a prettified account of the mission in exchange for his own Viper. A recovered Coker surprises Adama on the way to his ship, which displays his newly-chosen call sign: “Husker”, a tribute to Coker. Adama joins his fellow pilots, ready to continue the fight.

I like the plot, the cast (but why must a British actor use an American accent for a show that is not about earth humans?) and the acting. The special effects – in places it really looks like a web series rather than a tv show and the cost factor must have really hampered it. During the crash scene, it looks like an¬† early 2000’s computer simulation! Ben Cotton is great in his role (he always seems to play unlikable characters but it’s different as Coker). Brian Markinson plays Commander Nash(isn’t he in everything shot in Vancouver), Mike Dopud has a small role as Captain Deke “Minute Man” Tornvald, a celebrated veteran, while Ty Olsson & Carmen Moore have minor parts as well. I wish this show had gotten a proper treatment with more financial backing to get better special effects. What is gonna happen to the franchise? Wait & see.

One Photograph That Means A Lot To Me

“Look at this photograph, every time I do it’ makes me laugh
How did our eyes go so red, and what the hell is on Joey’s head”

“Photograph – I don’t want your, Photograph – I don’t need your
Photograph – All I’ve got is a photograph, But it’s not enough ”

Those are lyrics from two of my favourite songs about photographs and since the prompt for today in Plinky is about that one photograph that means a lot to me. I used to take a lot of photos of friends & family when I was younger but that slowly stopped quite a few years ago. Then a few odd photos here and there, mostly shot using mobile phone cameras and in 2010 I got into a lot more but it’s nothing professional or even close to it. I like some of my photos a lot and sometimes I think that they have come out well.

Out of all the photographs I have, digital or film, it’s not that hard to select that one that means the most to me. You can see it here on my page about Shawny my dog, who passed away in April, 2005. That is only one of two photos that I have of her and the other isn’t very good and it’s of her seen through the bars of her kennel (dog house). You can’t really see her in that pic that well. So this one is the only one that I really have of her. It’s a typical Shawny pose – it was taken back in 1998 just before I was heading for a day long trip with my friends & classmates in NIIT. I was pretty excited about the trip and had borrowed my sister’s camera for taking a few snaps for the day. The photo was taken early in the morning as I was waiting for the mini-bus to come and pick me up for the trip. I was standing outside and Shawny was in a playful mood, running and fetching her ball that I was throwing for her, and she “posed” for me as I took a photo of her. She was looking up at me with her mouth open just waiting for me to throw the ball and I quickly took the pic.

I miss her terribly even after almost 8 years and I think about her everyday. I will always miss her but she’s always in my thoughts. Not a day goes by without me thinking about her and dreaming of us, in a futuristic universe, flying in a spaceship with some robots and fighting off evil aliens. She was a really special dog and there’s none like her. So that’s the photo that means the most to me.

Dracula A.D. 1972

1972 saw the release of Dracula A.D. 1972, the 7th Hammer Horror feature film of the Dracula series ¬†and the sixth to star¬†Christopher Lee¬†in the title role. It also sees the return of¬†Peter Cushing¬†as Van Helsing for the first time since¬†The Brides of Dracula¬†in 1960, and is the first to feature both Lee and Cushing in their respective roles since 1958’sDracula. directed by¬†Alan Gibson¬†and written by¬†Don Houghton the movie also stars Stephanie Beacham and the delicious looking Caroline Munro in a small role.The movie deviates from the previous ones as it not a direct continuity from the previous film, unlike how it was so far. Also it is set in the modern era, ie., 1972 the same year as the release of the movie.

In 1982 Dracula & Lawrence Van Helsing battle it out on a running horse carriage, which crashes and Dracula is partly impaled by one of the wheels. In the struggle, Van Helsing manages to fully push the wheel into the vampire’s chest, staking him. This done, Van Helsing collapses and dies from his own wounds, just as one of Dracula’s devotees arrives on horse back. He collects Dracula’s remains and a few days later buries them next to Van Helsing’s grave at St. Bartoph’s Church. Now, fast forward a 100 years and we’re in 1972 London. A group of young hippies, which include Van Helsing’s great-great granddaughter, revel in drinking & partying. One of the group, Johnny Alucard (played by the same actor as that of Dracula’s disciple) persuades Jessica and the others to attend a black magic ceremony in the now abandoned, de-consecrated St Bartolph’s. At night he performs a black arts ceremony which ends in the bloody ritual involving one of the group, Laura Bellows, that resurrects Dracula. Jessica and the others flee in horror of the ritual, not knowing that the great vampire has been resurrected, after which Dracula is resurrected and kills Laura.

Young school boys find Laura’s body and alerts the cops, who suspects an occult element and interviews Lorrimer Van Helsing (Cushing), Jessica’s grandfather, who is shocked to learn the details of Laura‚Äôs death. Lorrimer is an occult expert and professor and has kept the secrets of Dracula passed on by¬† his father who got it from his father. He realises that Johnny Alucard (whose name is Dracula written backwards) is a disciple of Dracula, and that the Count must have returned. In the meantime, Alucard brings another of Jessica‚Äôs friends, Gaynor, to St Bartolph‚Äôs, where she is killed by Dracula and Alucard is himself turned into a vampire. The vampire Alucard kills a passer-by and lures Jessica‚Äôs boyfriend, Bob (Philip Miller), to a caf√© they frequent, where he turns him into a vampire as well. While Lorrimer is out, Bob goes to the Van Helsing house and persuades Jessica to come to the caf√©, where he and Alucard capture her and take her to Dracula. Lorrimer tracks Aucard to the latter’s flat and after a confrontation, kills him in the shower where the sunlight & running water drowns him. Lorrimer then finds Bob dead on the grounds of the church ¬†discovers Jessica in a trance at St Bartolph‚Äôs, where Dracula plans to take his revenge on the Van Helsing family by turning her into a vampire. Van Helsing sets a trap for Dracula and waits for him to return at nightfall. After a struggle, Dracula is killed by a fall into a pit of stakes that Van Helsing had previously prepared, and his spell over Jessica is broken. She embraces her grandfather and the title “Rest In Final Peace” is shown.

Not nearly as good as some of the first couple of movies in this series. Interesting take and change in direction for the movie though. Not too bloody or gory, there’s a bit of heavy cleavage action by Miss Munro and especially by Miss Beacham, where the camera seems to focus a lot of time on her shapely bosom! 6 outta 10!

The Top Five Items

If you had to evacuate your home in an instant, what five items would you grab on your way out? Remember that’s items and not living things like cats, dogs or people.

Here is my top 5:

  1. My laptop (modem, speakers, external hard drives & USB mouse included) – duh! That’s a no brainer!
  2. Bag with change of clothes, including underwear
  3. Wallet with ATM card
  4. Medicine box
  5. My Blackberry Bold

Simple, plain and essentials according to me. What would you grab?

RIP Sophiya Haque

British Asian actress, singer & former MTV Asia VJ Sophiya Haque died yesterday (the 16th in England) due to complications created by pneumonia and cancer. She was just 41.

Sophiya Haque was born in¬†Portsmouth, United Kingdom to a¬†Bangladeshi¬†father and British mother.¬†She was trained in dance as a child, and studied at the¬†Arts Educational Schools, London. Sophiya Haque tasted success as a singer when her band, Akasa, signed a deal with¬†Warner Bros¬†in 1988. She moved to¬†Mumbai¬†in 1997 to try her luck in¬†Bollywood. She achieved popularity in¬†South Asia¬†in the 1990s as one of the first generation of VJs on the region’s then-emerging cable television scene.¬†She worked as a VJ for MTV and¬†Channel V. She worked for seven years with MTV. She was the first VJ in India to achieve stardom. She worked on a Cadbury commercial which became very popular.

She moved back to London in 2002 to act in theater. She appeared as the barmaid Poppy Morales in¬†Coronation Street¬†from December 2008 until June 2009. She also appeared in BBC’s¬†Fairy Tales¬†series.¬†Until she was diagnosed with cancer she was working in Michael Grandages’s Privates on Parade.¬†She lived in London with her partner, music director¬†David White.¬†They were building a houseboat together when she fell ill.¬†She was diagnosed with cancer around Christmas and developed a lung clot.¬†Haque died of pneumonia and cancer on 16 January 2013.

Sophiya Haque (1971 Р16 January 2013)

Lost Girl – Season 1

Premiering in September of 2010, Lost Girl is a Canadian supernatural crime/drama series focusing on the life of a succubus Bo (Anna Silk) as she learns to control her abilities, help those in need, and discover the truth about her origins. Orphaned as a baby, Bo was raised by human adoptive parents who never knew about her power to steal people‚Äôs life force through their mouths with a kiss, to bewitch people with a touch, and to feed from sexual energy during intercourse. She herself was unaware of her powers & came to realize it later in life. I’ve watched the first two seasons and now that the 3rd season is underway, it’s time for a look back at the first season (13 episodes) for a review.

Bo has been living on the run for years, trying to figure out why she kills people when she kisses them. After leaving someone she kills out in the open, she is contacted by a group called The Fae. She discovers who and what she is, and is told to join one of two tribes, either the Light or the Dark. She refuses and chooses the side of humanity instead and forms a “partnership with Kensie; a smartass & precocious young woman (played by Ksenia Solo), Dyson; a werewolf & cop in the human world (Kristen Holden-Ried) and his partner Hale; a siren(K.C. Santiago), Dr. Lauren Lewis (Zoie Palmer); a human doctor who is employed by the Light Fae’s leader The Ash and the mysterious Trick (played by KC Howland) who owns & runs a Fae bar but is very powerful and is known as the Blood King for writing words in his blood makes events come true.

Bo agrees to help a¬†will-o’-the-wisp¬†find the person who stole his treasure in exchange for information on her birth-parents. More is revealed of the world of the Fae, including some species of Fae and their society. Bo also gains two allies in her search for her truths. Bo and Kenzi open a private investigation office. Their first job is to find a missing student at a local college. Kenzi goes undercover in the college, Bo joins campus security to uncover what happened. Bo and Dyson’s relationship goes on the rocks and another species of Fae is revealed.¬†Bo tries to handle being rejected by Dyson with the help of Kenzi. Dyson tries the same with Hale’s help as well. A¬†fury¬†and her husband meet Bo and the fury tries to hire Bo to kill a human. She refuses and all hell breaks loose. Bo is hired by a Dark Fae named Mayer to find out how a human managed to win a bet with him. The reward for finding out is having an Oracle reveal something of Bo’s past to her. Bo solves the mystery by finding out that a Fae that can jump between human corpses, called a Hsien, managed the deed. In the end, the answers Bo seeks are not given, but she does learn one thing. Her mother is alive, and coming for Bo. Bo and Kenzi follow Lauren as she tends to a sick¬†Aswang, a type of Fae that is a carrion eater. Kenzi eats some soup that made the Aswang ill and becomes gravely ill as well. Bo and Lauren attempt to locate the source of the disease, a¬†Basilisk, that is killing the pair before it is too late. Trick sells something precious to him for Kenzi’s sake, and Dyson’s relationship with Kenzi becomes stronger. Bo also finds that with Lauren’s help she has more control over her powers and can feed without killing humans any longer.

Kenzi is running a scam in which she is cleansing homes of evil spirits. She does so in a home where a murder/suicide took place. In the process of doing so, she is bitten by a Djieiene, an Under Fae creature that is similar to a giant spider. Over the course of the episode, Bo and Hale are also bitten and the paranoia created makes them try to kill each other. The only hope for them to be saved is Lauren and Dyson who are running out of time. Bo gets a possible lead on her mother from a vampire. That lead takes her to an inmate on death row named Lou Ann, but it seems to be a false lead. The vampire is then found murdered, and Bo concludes that there is another Fae involved. She uses her Dark Fae contacts to find that the murderer is a Fae named Vex who is a kind of Fae called a Mesmer. She attempts to get help from the Light Fae and is refused. Lauren is forced to betray Bo by The Ash, and her relationship with Bo is damaged severely. Bo then attempts to get answers from and revenge on Vex, but he is more powerful than Bo expected. The Fae are celebrating their holiest day called¬†La Shoshain. In the middle of the partying at Trick’s bar, a¬†Banshee¬†calls out the impending death of one of the people there. Bo becomes involved with solving a long held family fight from one of the Noble Fae families and Kenzi becomes romantically involved with the brother marked for death. Bo calls for a¬†Agallamh¬†which forces the two brothers of the family to attempt to reconcile their differences. Through the story we also learn about Fae history and that Trick is a being known as the Blood King who set out the rules of the Fae in the past. Bo is hired to investigate the suicide of a woman by her sister. In the process of doing so, she encounters a Dark Fae¬†succubus¬†named Saskia. Saskia displaces Kenzi in Bo’s life, and the new pair attempt to solve the mystery. Trick in the meantime is threatened with the loss of his bar, The Dal Riata, when a business associate arrives to claim an item from him which seems to have vanished. Kenzi agrees to help Trick locate the missing item by summoning a¬†Lightning Bird¬†for him. Bo comes to battle an Albaster, who is the natural enemy of the succubi as her investigation continues with deadly results and Bo making a decision about Saskia’s involvement in her life.

Dyson wakes up outside of a club with a recently deceased Dark Fae¬†redcap¬†named Ba’al beside him and blood all over his body. He obtains sanctuary from Trick, and discovers that he has no memories of what happened to him, and asks for help from Bo to find out why. In the meantime, The Morrigan blames Dyson for the death of Ba’al, an associate of her favorite Vex and looks for revenge on Dyson for this. Both The Morrigan and The Ash attempt to convince Dyson to give himself up but without success. Bo in the meantime searches at a Dark Fae owned club which Vex runs trying to solve the mystery. She discovers that there is more to the place than is on the surface and discovers the truth of what happened. A friend from Kenzi’s past asks for her help in finding out what happened to a missing relative. To do so, Bo and Dyson pose as a married couple to investigate a country club while Kenzi works as an employee there. They discover that a Dark Fae, called a Land Wight, is responsible for the many disappearances there. Dyson demands that Trick tells Bo what they know or he will. Dyson and Bo come to an understanding about their relationship. But Saskia returns and tries to kill Dyson, however Bo saves Dyson at the last moment. Dyson and Trick finally tell Bo what they know about her past and Saskia is revealed to be Bo’s mother. Saskia, now known by her true name Aoife, begins a plan to cause a war between the Light and Dark Fae. To do so she attacks the Light Fae Elders and kills many of them. Bo, upset with her friends not telling her the truth, turns her back on them one by one except for Kenzi who tries to help Bo find a way to stop her mother from completing her plans. In the end, Bo battles her mother, Trick makes a sacrifice to help Bo, and Dyson loses what is most important to him to the¬†Norn¬†to give Bo a chance to overcome her mother.

Exciting, fun, sexy (the sexual chemistry between the delicious Anna Silk & Zoie Palmer is tantalizing) and a wonderful cast to boot. It’s getting a good fan base which I hope will see this series have a long life.

Tied To Technology

Everything I have and most I don’t have. I want it all and I want the latest and I want more improvements and I want the kind of stuff that is still being made and the kind of stuff that is still science fiction. All the coolest gadgets, make them good and make the available for all and make it free and easy to get. Screw money!

I love my flat screen tv (although I don’t watch it), I love my dvds, my dvd player, my laptop, my Blackberry, my stereo (I don’t use it anymore). I want a bigger & more fancy laptop, a tablet pc, BlackBerry 10 devices that are now only proposals but look really awesome. I want all the stuff that I see and hear about but don’t have. I want the stuff only shown on shows like Star Trek & Farscape too.

I want replicators, flying shuttlecrafts, transporters, phazers and light sabres. I want a hollowsuite Рdamn you, where are the hollowsuites already. The concept came up in Star Trek TNG back in 1987. 1987, people! I want beer to flow freely from the food & drink replicators. I want tiny robots that lights the way and engage forcefields to protect you from harm. I want hover bikes & cars that can travel anywhere easily. I want terraforming devices (more stable than the Genesis device ofcourse) that make it easy for us to colonize other planets and moons and live in comfort on those planets. Spread out humanity & our animals Рmore free room for everyone to enjoy. I want spaceships that take you from point A in space to point B in ease, comfort and luxury and it has to be like, warp speed (they are working on that at the moment). Where are the tricorders & highly medical devices that make diseases almost extinct and pain &  hurt poof into thin air? I want those!

I want all those things that I have seen on those tv shows & movies and stuff that I have made up in my head. And I want it now!

Powered by Plinky

That’s My Boy

Adam Sandler –¬† he usually either makes a good comedy movie or one that people hate. This one, for me, falls somewhere in the middle. While it’s nowhere as good as his better ones, I didn’t find it to be as bad as most critics have labelled (it is nominated for eight Golden Raspberry Awards) and I even laughed out loud at some of the crude comedy. Sandler co-produced this movie that also stars Adam Samberg, Leighton Meester, Milo Ventimiglia, James Caan, Vanilla Ice (as himself) and a cameo by Suran Sarandon!

In 1984, 13 year old Donny Berger has an affair with his 22 year old teacher Mary McGarricle and they are caught having sex behind the stage and she is arrested and sentenced to go to prison for 30 years post delivering a baby boy. Inept father Donny semi-raises his son, who he names Han Solo Berger, has a few years of celebrity & noteriety and ends up being estranged from his son who moves out at the age of 18, changes his name to Todd Peterson and has no contact with his father. So present day 42 year old Donny is a washed up slacker, almost broke and perpetually drinking beer,¬†spending most his time at a local strip club with his friends, bartender Brie and stripper Champale. And he finds himself owning the IRS 43,000 dollars in back taxes and needs to pay it back within a week.¬† A reality tv producer who had produced shows for Donny during his brief period of celebrity, and Morgan offers him $50,000 if he can organize a reunion with Han and Ms. McGarricle at the women’s prison. Donny also places a bet on a morbidly obese¬†athlete Tubby Tuke to win an upcoming marathon.

Donny goes to meet his son who is staying at the huge mansion owned by his boss Stev, which is also where the wedding is to take place. Donny is introduced as an old friend and hits it off with members of the wedding party, including Steve’s old mother. Donny’s popularity makes Todd’s best man step aside and have him fulfill the role of best man. ¬†Donny tries to convince Todd to come to the women’s prison to see Ms. McGarricle (not revealing that it is for Morgan’s television show), but he refuses. Although Todd fights with Donny over all the immature stuff while he was¬† growing up, the father’s influence is showing on Todd. Donny tries to be fatherly by encouraging him to stand up for himself; so much so that Todd picks a fight with the priest who is to officiate the wedding, Father McNally (James Caan), and Donny comes to his rescue. After a wild bachelor party, father & son bond along with “uncle Vanny” (Vanilla Ice as himself) but ends the night puking & having sex with the mannequin wearing Jamie’s wedding dress. Donny & Vanilla Ice both have sex with Steve mother! The following day, Jamie forces Todd to take the dress to the dry cleaner and he decides to visit his mother anyway. Donny rushes to prison to stop the meeting, but arrives too late; Randall ambushes Todd, Donny, and Ms. McGarricle with a film crew and an enraged Todd leaves. He refuses to sign a release form for the television appearance, leaving Donny with no money from the stunt.

While back at the mansion to get his belongings, Donny overhears Jamie on a phone call, indicating that she is cheating on Todd with Steve. Although he is unable to prove it, Donny later finds her having sex with her brother Chad, a jazz dancer who is pretending to be a US Marine and takes a photo of them. Jamie then admits that she actually did have sex with Steve to “help” Todd get further in his career. She gives Donny the money he needs in exchange for his silence because she knows how this would affect Todd if he found out the truth. Donny changes his mind on the day of the wedding and he & Vanilla Ice interrupt the wedding. Donny tears up Jamie’s check and urges her to whisper the truth to Todd. Now knowing that she had sex with Chad, he is disgusted and becomes more self-assured in revealing his real identity to the shocked attendants, even accepting Donny as his father and taking his name Han Solo Berger back. He tells Steve that he quits and the trio leaves the wedding after both Jamie & Chad are knocked out for trying to attack Donny & Han. The following day at the strip club, Han reveals that he is dating Brie. He offers Donny the money to help pay for the unpaid taxes, but he refuses stating that it’s time for him to grow up and accept responsibility. Donny is preparing to go to prison, intending to rekindle his relationship with Ms. McGarricle when both are released in 2015 ‚Äď when suddenly on television, they see Tubby Tuke complete an unlikely come-from-behind victory in his marathon, winning Donny $160,000 from his earlier wager, more than enough to keep him out of prison.

With a lot of swearing, dirty jokes, obscene gestures, talk of sex, masturbation etc – it really is a Sandler vehicle. I found parts of it funny but I totally understand why people hated it. I can’t get over the stupid plot and the overused cliched bits. Plus Adam Sandler uses a stupid voice for this role. 6 outta 10!

What Is One Question You Hate To Be Asked?

One of the questions I hate the most, and right now it’s becoming the number 1 question, is the question that a lot of people seem to want to ask me out of curiosity : how come you are not married yet?

Now, it’s not because I’m a great catch or really cute or established financially & socially. It’s obviously due to my age – I’m 36 and over here most people my age are already married and possibly with 1 or 2 little monsters as well. By that I mean kids! Look at it this way – last year I got in touch with a bunch of my old school friends, most of whom I haven’t seen in over 10-15 years atleast and all of them are married and with the exception of 2, are parents as well. Now we were like 60 classmates and I have not been in contact with all of them but the ones I have are the ones I was very close with. So I’m the odd one out. The same goes for most of the friends I have made since then who are in my age group.

In my family oddly enough there seems to be the sad company of two of my male cousins – both of who are older than me by 3 years. So I’m not really alone there. I know one of them has been looking quite desperately with his family through the arranged marriage route but after about 6 years or so years of hard searching (finding a girl from a similar family background, age, caste, religion & matching horoscope or “jadhagam” ) he remains single at the age of 39. The other cousin lives in the States and barring a failed love affair (if I remember correctly) I think he hasn’t really looked. I know for a while his parents were also looking for a suitable bride for him but I don’t know why they stopped (probably he told them to stop). I think his case is similar to one of my reasons as to why I’m still single – and that is being overweight!

Ok so back to me. Whenever I get asked that question I sigh and try and explain but in a lot of cases I am not that close to the person who is asking it to me and therefore I am not comfortable in answering it in the right sense. I make up stuff and have several answers which seem to give them some satisfaction to these people (some of who are my relatives and colleagues). Keep in mind that people over here think a lot of things, none of them good, about you if you reach my age and are not hitched. I have my reasons and I’ll list them here :

  • financial
  • the above mentioned overweight factor
  • finding the right woman – no arranged stuff with astrology bullshit for me!

It’s short and simple as can be. So until atleast 2 of these factors can be fixed I don’t see it happening soon. Might be a year or two down the line or even further. Am I lonely? You bet I am but will I just settle for anything? We’ll see how it goes. For now, I sleep alone and I share my life with no one.

Powered by Plinky

Boom! Selma Hits 500 Comments

Most of you who regularly visit my humble blog know that there’s someone called Selma who comments quite often. This is Selma. She blogs at Selma In The City. She is a wonderful writer. She lives in Sydney, Australia. But she was born & lived in Scotland for many years. No she is not a cat, although she could be as graceful as one. And – she is my friend.

She is one of my strongest cheerleaders and such a wonderful, positive & vibrant woman that just a comment, email or reading something that she has blogged brings a huge smile to my face. The fact that this awesome person continues to regularly visit me and is my friend boggles my mind but I love that she does and I love her.

Also, she states a great truth in question # 7 :P that I have suspect for so long :D

Q1. State your name, location and what you do for a living?

My name is Selma Sergent. I live in Sydney, Australia and I am a freelance writer.

Q2. Do you remember how you came to know about Awake & Dreaming?

I came to know about your blog through the wonderful and amazing Meleah Rebeccah from Momma Mia, Mea Culpa.

Q3. How often do you visit my blog?

I visit your blog several times a week when new posts appear in my reader.

Q4. What is it that you like so much about Awake & Dreaming that you visit frequently and post a lot of comments?

I like hearing about life in India, the music and your sense of humour. I also agree with a lot of things you say.

Q5. What are the kind of posts that you like the most in my blog?

I like the ones about your family as well as music and TV shows you like.

Q6. Is there any topic that you would want me to blog about (that I haven’t yet)?

Maybe the local sights of your town, places to visit…stuff like that.

Choose the followingQ7. Admit it: you have a big crush on Roshan and that is why you are here a lot : Choices (true/very true/absolutely true/damn right it’s true/hell yeah and I’m proud of it).

Yes. It’s true. The real reason I visit Awake & Dreaming is because I have a HUGE crush on Roshan. But doesn’t everyone????

Q8. This is for you; say anything you like and I’ll post it here (cause you deserve it)

8. You have become a really good friend to me, Roshan (even though we have never met.) I enjoy hanging out with you in the blogosphere and hope we continue to do so for many years to come. Hope I hit 1,000 comments someday.

Thank you Selma – I hope you do hit 1000 someday. I really consider myself lucky to call you a friend even if I have never met you. But if do get the chance I will visit Sydney and pop in and say hi. I hope 2013 is your year and I will be cheering from the sidelines in full team Selma colours all along!

On The Countdown To Zero

One of Def Leppards best songs yet one of their most underrated songs. Gods Of War performed live from their In The Round In Your Face originally released on 1989, and re-released on DVD 2001. Recorded live the 12 & 13 of February, 1988 at the McNichols Arena in Denver, Colorado and the 7, 8 & 9 of October, 1988 at The Omni in Atlanta, Georgia.

Where Would You Rather Be?

If you were asked to spend a year living in a different location, where would you choose and why?

That’s easy although I would prefer to make that forever rather than just a year. O Canada, you beckon to me you far & distant land! That’s right, the place that I’d rather be living is in Canada, with some particular places in particular that I’d like to live in.

As for which place in Canada that I’d want to live in, I’m torn between two cities – Ottawa, Ontario and Vancouver, British Columbia. Both are beautiful and gorgeous to the eyes, ears & nose ….. every sense! They both have plenty of sights to see and look beautiful for natives & tourists alike. My preference would be Ottawa as from the year 2000 onwards I have been an Ottawa Senators fan and would love to live¬† there. The city has a lot to offer even though it’s quiet by most other cities standards. I’m a beer lover and Canadian beer fascinates me. Ottawa being at the border of Ontario & Quebec must get all the goodies or most of the goodies from both provinces and one could be spoilt for choice. Everything what I have seen & heard of the city tells me that this is the perfect place for me with just one exception – it can get really cold there and it snows a lot! That might be difficult for me not having been accustomed to the climate and having asthma and stuff.

That is a good segway to Vancouver – probably one of the most naturally scenic and beautiful cities in the world. With it’s location being on the coast of Western Canada and a jewel of the Pacific Ocean, this is a city that can stun even the long time resident from time to time. Vancouver offers a lot of good things for a resident and it too is a port of call for many movie, tv stars & rock musicians as well. I would have a swell time there and yes the place has an awesome beer selection too. Ofcourse I would have to change allegiance to the Canucks but I can think of much, much worse things to happen to me.

So Canada it is and Ottawa is #1, with Vancouver a close 2nd. Other cities that interest me are Montreal, Calgary, Toronto, Edmonton, Halifax etc etc. Someday I hope to visit but I wish I were there to stay already.

Powered by Plinky

Barbarella & Galaxina

Barbarella is a 1968 French-Italian¬†science fiction film¬†based on¬†Jean-Claude Forest’s¬† French¬†Barbarella¬†comics. The film was directed by¬†Roger Vadim¬†and stars¬†Jane Fonda, who was Vadim’s wife at the time. This is a total cheese-fest of what campy science fiction in the late 60s & 70s were like. Having said that they did put a lot of thought into the sets and designs as well as costumes. And well it was 1968!

The movie is set 40,000 years in the future and Barbarella, who travels in a funny looking spaceship but which is faux fur lined and glamourous inside, is introduced to us in a 5 minute title sequence which is a strip tease while in zero gravity. Awesome! She is then contacted by the president of Earth and given the assignment to retrieve Doctor Durand Durand, who has created a dangerous weapon, (yes this is where Duran Duran got their band name from) from the planet Tau Ceti. She crashes on an icy plain and is soon knocked unconscious by two mysterious girls who hit her on the forehead with a snowball and then capture her. Barbarella is taken to the wreckage of a spaceship called the Alpha 1, where a bunch of errant children unleash  several dolls which have razor sharp teeth and start biting her. Barbarella is rescued by Mark Hand, the Catchman, who patrols the ice looking for errant children.

In return he asks to make love to her but on earth humans have done away with penetrative sex and instead swallow pills together and press their palms together to get shared bliss. However Mark wants the old fashioned way and pretty soon, Barbarella is humming in pleasure. She then makes her way to the next labyrinth where she meets a blind angel Pygar, who rescues her when she knocks herself unconscious. Pygar introduces her to Professor Ping (Marcel Marceau), who offers to repair her ship. Ping also notes that Pygar is capable of flight, but merely lacks the will. Pygar saves her from being attacked by the black guards and she makes love to him in return. This encourages him to try to fly and together they fly to Sogo, a decadent city ruled over by the Great Tyrant and powered by a liquid essence of evil called the Mathmos. There they are separated and Barbarella catches the eye of the Great Tyrant (Anita Pallenberg) who keeps calling her “Pretty, pretty”. ¬†Pygar is left to become the Great Tyrant’s plaything, while Barbarella is placed in a cage, to be pecked to death by birds but is rescued by ¬†Dildano, leader of the resistance to the Great Tyrant. She offers to have sex with him but he wants the Earth way! With an invisible duplicate key to get into the Great Tyrant’s chambers while she is resting and at her most vulnerable. However Barabrella is captured by captured by the Concierge and she is placed inside the Excessive Machine.

As the Concierge begins to play, Barbarella experiences increasing pleasure, and her clothing is expelled from the machine. The Concierge tells her when they reach the crescendo, she will die of pleasure. He then begins to play faster and more furiously, while Barbarella writhes in ecstasy inside the machine. Eventually, the machine overloads and burns out, unable to keep up with her. Barbarella then discovers the Concierge is none other than Durand Durand, aged thirty years due to the Mathmos. Durand Durand traps Barbarella in the Tyrant’s Chamber of Dreams, taking both keys and locking them inside. As he prepares to crown himself lord of Sogo, Dildano launches his revolution. Durand Durand uses his Positronic Ray to decimate the rebels. The Great Tyrant then releases the Mathmos, which consumes all of Sogo and Durand Durand with it. Barbarella and the Great Tyrant are protected from the Mathmos by Barbarella’s innate goodness. They emerge from the Mathmos to find Pygar. Pygar then flies Barbarella and the Tyrant away from the Mathmos. When asked by Barbarella why he saved the Tyrant after everything she had done to him, Pygar responds, “An angel has no memory.”

While she may not be human, she did light the screen on fire. The late Dorothy Stratten is Galaxina – a robot created with feelings in the 31st century and part of the crew of the intergalactic space police cruiser ‘Infinity’. The ship is captained by the incompetent Cornelius Butt and his crewmen; his first officer, Sgt. Thor; pilot “space-cowboy” Pvt. Robert “Buzz” McHenry; engineers, Maurice – a black humanoid alien with pointy ears and a pair of bat wings, and Sam (Tad Horino) – a¬†Confucius-philosophy quoting Asian man. Also aboard is a “Rock-Eater,” a rock-eating alien prisoner confined to the brig. The movie is a spoof that pays tribute to Star Trek, Star Wars & Alien.

Infinity chases a suspicious bird like unidentified space ship and the pilot, ¬†a mysterious masked figure, flips them off and attacks them on being questioned. After the encounter, Galaxina serves dinner to Capt. Butt, Thor and Buzz. As she serves them chicken-flavored food pills, the three men stare googly-eyed at her beauty, and Buzz is electrically shocked when he tries to touch her buttocks. Tired of the pill-food, Capt. Butt decides to eat an alien egg confiscated from a prisoner. The egg eventually sickens him and he coughs up a baby alien creature that quickly scurries away. Later the crew receives their new mission to proceed to the prison planet Altair One to recover a priceless stolen gemstone called the “Blue Star” – throughout the movie, whenever someone says the name of the gemstone, it is followed by a chorus from the skies, much to the bewilderment of the characters! However it will take them 27 years to make it there, so they are to go into cryosleep, after a 24 hour stop at a brothel located on an asteroid!

While the crew sleeps Galaxina ¬†reprograms herself to become more human, learning to talk and disabling her electrical defense mechanism. ater, the baby alien that Capt. Butt gave “birth” too, pays him a visit and tampers with the controls on his pod. When the crew awaken at their destination, Butt emerges from his pod an old man with a huge gray mop of hair covering his eyes and long beard. After the ship lands Thor is seduced by the newly reprogrammed Galaxina and he quickly falls in love with her but they will have to wait to get back and arrange for her to be fitted with “lady parts”. Galaxina goes to the town on the planet in search of the Blue Star and enters a “human restaurant” – where humans are served as food! There she finds Ordric, the masked figure the crew encountered earlier, and who is in possession of the Blue Star. During the confrontation with him, Galaxina discovers Ordric is some kind of robot himself when she smashes his head open. Ordric deactivates and Galaxina takes the Star but is captured by a gang of bikers who are descedants of the first criminal humans sent to the planet when it used to be a penal colony Later, their leader announces that he will sacrifice Galaxina to their deity “Harley-David-Son” and with the power of the Blue Star, he will eventually take control of the universe.

Thor & Buzz come in search of Galaxina, untie her and make it back to the ship. Once in space, they are attacked by Ordric, who boards their ship and takes it over. He eventually takes back the Blue Star and locks everyone up in the brig. Ordric then goes to the bridge, but unbeknown to him, the alien Butt gave birth too, now grown full size, sneaks onto the bridge and attacks him. The creature then goes to the brig and gives Butt, (who it calls “Mama” ), the keys to the cell door. Once free, the crew rush to the bridge where they find Ordric torn to pieces. They then contemplate the riches they will receive as reward for finding the Blue Star, and then notice the Rock-Eater has just eaten it.

Two movies 12 years apart, cheesy & campy scifi spoofs of that era and starring femme fatales. I give them both a 5 outta 10 each!

“The Long Weekend”

The long weekend is, unfortunately, for me and people like me a normal two day weekend for other people. That is the way it is. Atleast from 2006 onwards with a brief respite for me between April 2009 to March of 2011. During those years, as an Assistant Manager and HOD of my department at the office I worked at I got 2 Saturdays off each month along with the Sundays. That wasn’t so bad. Anyway, the Saturdays over there were usually quite dull and lazy and it usually involved me & my team going for long 2 hour lunches.

During the years 2002-2005 I worked in 3 different offices that each had the 2 days off routine. It felt so good to be able to get Saturdays & Sundays off; however during my tenure in the main office of Idea Kerala (2004 & 2005) I got two days off but they were on a rotation basis during the week and I usually preferred to take Mondays & Tuesday off as I liked working there on Saturdays and Sundays. I just got more things done and it was enjoyable working there. I’m ok with that as well but since then as I have mostly had Sundays off, I guess I’m used to feeling lazy and sleepy on Sunday and will usually be at home watching movies and relaxing on my bed unless I’m going out for drinks and lunch.

Since i left Firstsource Solutions back in March of 2011 it’s been 6 days working every week except for when a public holidays falls in between. In my current company, where I have been working for the past 6 months, we now have the second Saturday of every month off, which is atleast something and we all look forward to it with anticipation. This wasn’t the case throught; we got the second Saturday off in October & November but not in December. I watched as some of my colleagues made & discussed their plans for the “long weekend” and some of them asked me mine. I felt a little sad as it is supposed to be a 2 day weekend for everyone but stupid situations regarding money & profit and the culture of our nation makes it not possible to do so (pick one or the other as to why Indians works 6 days a week). I myself had no plans as I was nursing a bad cold. I have spent yesterday & today half online and half watching movies & tv shows on my computer. Sunday night sees two big games : Manchester United vs Liverpool and Arsenal vs Manchester City and so my Sunday evening & night will be spent watching them.