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The Show Must Go On

If you were involved in a movie, would you rather be the director, the producer, or the lead performer? (Note: you can’t be the writer!).

But the whole point for me making films would be to create films based on the stories & ideas in my head. I mean, they are so awesome. Ok, I guess I would rather be the director producer than the lead actor in the film. Because then I can use my vision and ideas for what the movie should be like based on the story that I am given to do or I choose even if I cannot be the writer. Besides, I can make the writers write my story based on the ideas I give them right?

If this question was asked to me even 20, 10 or 5 years back I would have said “actor” because I’ve always wanted to be an actor based on the many actors & actresses who have entertained me and made go through the gamut of various emotions throughout the years but as I grew older I like the ideas behind the creation process and the production side of things. And I like movies for what they are even more than the actors and the special effects and stories – I find myself liking more and more independent films and fan based shows and getting more disappointed by huge blockbuster films from the big studios. I’m sure inflated expectations and large sums of money are responsible for the stuff that Hollywood doles out year after year but still – come up with original stuff guys!

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

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Prelude To Axanar

Prelude to Axanar is a 21 minute short fan film that came out online in 2014 (I dunno how come I missed watching it till last night). Funded through Kickstarter, production sought $10,000 in funding, but in gaining $101,000, received more than ten times the amount originally sought. Set in the Star Trek universe, the film stars Kate Vernon, Tony Todd, Richard Hatch, Gary Graham, and J. G. Hertzler, in a documentary-style film recounting the events surrounding the Battle of Axanar, a major clash between the Federation and the Klingons. The film’s purpose was to show that high quality ‘Star Trek‘ films can be made on a low budget. The film’s visual effects were done by Tobias Richter and Tommy Kraft, makeup was by Kevin Haney, and sound design was by Frank Serafine.

Shot to look like a documentary, Prelude To Axanar is about the Four Years War with the Klingon Empire, narrated by noted historian John Gill and featuring interviews with the various characters involved in the war. It begins 2 decades before the beginning of Star Trek : The Original Series – the Klingons, who do not see the Federation as worthy opponents in battle, attack and destroy Acranis IV, a prosperous Federation colony along the Klingon border. Under the leadership of their Supreme Commander Kharn, the Klingons continue their attack for 6 months. The Vulcans send a diplomatic delegation led by Ambassador Soval but they have little to no effect. In response to the losses suffered in the war, Starfleet appoints a new Commander-in-Chief, Admiral Marcus Ramirez, who pledges in a fleet-wide broadcast to defend “the dream of the Federation” against the Klingons’ committment to its destruction. Ramirez oversees the construction of the first warship of the Federation, the prototype USS Ares and several others in it’s class, to counter the Klingons’ mainstay, the D6 battle-cruiser.

With the introduction of the formidable Ares, the tides turn decisively towards the side of the Federation and the Klingons now change their minds about the Federation and also come to admire Captain Kelvin Garth, commander of the Ares. They then begin contruction of the D7 battle-cruisers to counteract the threat of the Ares and would restore the Klingons’ technical and military advantage. In response, Starfleet begins developing their own next-generation heavy cruiser, the Constitution-class, but construction falls behind schedule. To gain more time to finish their new heavy cruiser, Starfleet approves a plan proposed by Garth to fight the Klingons at Axanar, the planet where Kharn’s spies have reported the Constitution prototypes (revealed to be the Constitution and the Enterprise) are being built. The film ends on Stardate 2245.1, just before the battle at Axanar, when the first three D7s enter the war.

This short film is so awesome I cannot believe that it is a fan made film. It looks amazing and the acting of the cast is so good and spot on. It looks so much better than anything JJ Abrahms has done with the franchise so far. I am really surprised that I can be so excited about three fan based productions (Star Trek Continues, Star Trek Renegades and this one) that is head & shoulders above the cannon stuff that Paramount is releasing. Raising $650,000 through creation and release of Prelude to Axanar, Gossett and Peters are now in pre-production for the feature film Star Trek: Axanar, with production slated to begin in September 2014, and filming expected to commence by December for a 2015 release. Joining the cast will be Paul McGann & Garreth Wang as well as Neil deGrasse Tyson and Seth MacFarlane – Tyson would play the President of the United Federation of Planets and MacFarlane would play one of the Federation starship captains at the Battle of Axanar.

The Star Trek universe is so vast that even if every studio in the world created their own series or film, it would still just be the tip of the iceberg. May this trend continue. I want more Trek!

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Birdman

Directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu Birdman is an independent release American Black-comedy film starring Michael Keaton, Naomi Watts, Emma Stone, Edward Norton, Zach Galifianakis, Andrea Riseborough & Amy Ryan. The movie, made to look like it was a single continuous length shot, garnered wide acclaim from critics, with praise particularly directed to its acting, direction, and screenplay. The story follows faded Hollywood actor Riggan Thompson, famous for his role as superhero Birdman, as he struggles to mount a Broadway adaptation of a short story by Raymond Carver.

With his glory days as the superhero comic hero Birdman in 3 movies long behind him, washed up actor Riggan Thompson is attempting to resurrect his career by writing, directing & acting in a Broadway play based on Raymond Carver’s short story “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love”. Co-producing the play is his best friend and lawyer Jake and Riggan’s girlfriend Laura, and first-time Broadway actress, Lesley also co-star. Riggan is tormented by the voice of Birdman which he imagines to mock & criticize him and also imagines himself performing feats of telekinesis and levitation. During rehearsals a light fixture falls and injured actor Ralph (Riggan tells Jake that he made it happen himself in order to remove the actor from the play) and Lesley suggest that Riggan replace Ralph with the brilliant but volatile method actor Mike Shiner. In order to do that Riggan refinances his house to fund his contract.

The initial previews go disastrously with Mike breaking character over the replacement of his gin with water and attempts to rape Lesley during a sex scene. Riggan is also pissed at the younger actor as he feels that the latter is stealing his limelight with large news articles & interviews showing Mike as the star attraction. Mike is also hitting it off with Riggan’s former addict daughter Samantha, who he catches holding pot. His relationship with his daughter is strained as she accuses him of never being there for her when she was younger. On evening, during a break in the play, Riggan catches Samantha & Mike flirting and accidentally locks himself out of the theater and walks in his underwear through Times Square to get back inside; amateur videos of the incident go viral online. Later he runs into influential critic Tabitha Dickinson and though Riggan tries to be nice to her, she tells him that she hates his kind Hollywood celebrities that “pretend” to be actors and promises to “kill” his play with a negative review without having seen it. After arguing with her, he gets drunk and passes out on the streets of NY and the next day hallucinates a conversation with Birdman, who tries to convince him to do a 4th blockbuster film, and also imagines himself flying around the city.

On opening night, in the final scene which ends with his character shooting himself, Riggan uses a real gun with real bullets to shoot himself in the face. He earns a standing ovation from all but Tabitha, who leaves during the applause. When he wakes up he has had reconstructive surgery to his nose and Jake shows him rave reviews in the paper, including one from Tabitha who calls his uicide attempt “super-realism”, a new form of method acting. While Samantha is out getting him a vase for some flowers, Riggan goes to the bathroom and dismissed the hallucination of Birdman and seeing birds outside, climbs onto the window ledge. When Samantha comes back in to the room, she sees something in the sky and smiles as the movie ends.

What does she see that makes her smile? Her father flying in the sky? The ending is strange because all the feats of levitation and telekenesis is just supposed to be in his head right? I mean Riggan isn’t really a superhero? What could that ending mean? Nevertheless, it is a brilliantly directed, shot, produced and acted film one of the most unique way of telling a story I have ever seen. It is a look at Hollywood and the film industry itself and is well worth watching. Keaton is masterful, probably his best role yet. A 9 outta 10!

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Top Grossing Marvel Movie Characters

Top grossing Marvel movie characters

Comic book movies are becoming ever more popular, with roughly three of these films released every year and superhero games also start become more popular at sites like iPad Casino. Marvel are the most successful company, with most of the films based on their characters being hits – and these are the top five.

The Avengers – $1.51 billion

Given that it features all the big Marvel characters and actors like Robert Downey Jr, Scarlett Johansson and Chris Hemsworth, alongside direction from Joss Whedon, The Avengers was guaranteed to be a hit. It was Marvel’s first film to make over a billion in ticket sales, and still remains its highest grossing film.

Iron Man 3 – $1.21 billion

Iron Man 3, starring Robert Downey Jr as the title character and Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts, broke numerous box office records. It became the second highest grossing Marvel movie in a mere two weeks after its release and has remained there since.

Iron Man 2 – $623.9 million

Although it made almost half as much as its successor, this second Iron Man from 2010, still comfortably makes third spot on the list. It made $2.2 million at the box office on its opening day in European cinemas, thanks to the presence of Black Widow Scarlett Johansson and Samuel L Jackson as Nick Fury.

Iron Man – $585.2 million

This 2008 film started the Iron Man ball rolling, introducing Downey Jr as irascible billionaire Tony Stark, although its global box office take of $585.2 million seems positively miniscule now. Alongside North America and Canada, it topped the box office in most of Europe and Asia.

X-Men: The Last Stand

The X-Men franchise is another of Marvel’s big guns and this 2006 film with series regulars Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian McKellen was the biggest of them all at the box office. It was the top box office film in 26 countries outside the U.S., and broke Memorial Day weekend box office records in that country.

The success of the Marvel universe shows no signs of stopping, with the sequel of the Avengers - Avengers:the Age of Ultron and the Antman arriving in cinemas soon, making it tough to see how any other company can beat them.

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Interstellar

From director Christopher Nolan comes Interstellar a science fiction movie written by Nolan and his brother Jonathon Nolan and starring Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain and Michael Caine. Matt Damon, Casey Affleck, Topher Grace, Wes Bentley, John Lithgow & Lean Cairns have supporting roles.

In the near future the human population are having a shortage of food and hence is a failing agrarian society with frequent dust storms. Former pilot Cooper runs a farm with his father-in-law Donald, son Tom & 10 year old daughter Murphy “Murph”. Murph believes that there is a poltergeist in her room that is trying to communicate with her, dropping books and leaving markings in the dust and on investigating Copper believes that the “ghost” is an unknown intelligence sending coded messages using gravitational waves, leaving binary coordinates in the dust that direct them to a secret NASA installation led by Professor John Brand. Brand informs Cooper than a wormhole has opened near Saturn, presumably by an alien intelligence, and that the wormhole leads to another galaxy where 3 possibly habitable worlds orbiting a super-large black hole that they named ‘Gargantua’. The three planets are named Miller, Mann & Edmunds after the astronauts who were sent to survey them on a one way mission. Brand recruits Cooper to pilot the spacecraft Endurance to recover the astronauts’ data; if one of the planets is habitable, humanity will follow on space stations.

Murphy takes his leaving the hardest and refuses to be amicable. On the Endurance Cooper is joined by Brand’s daughter biotechnologist Amelia and two other scientists Romilly (David Gyasi) and Doyle (Wes Bentley) as well as advanced robots TARS and CASE. After they enter the wormhole they head to the planet Miller but find that the planet suffers from severe gravitational time dilation due to being too close to the blackhole; each hour on the planet is roughly equivalent to 7 hours on earth! Amelia, Romilly and Cooper head to the planet on one of the shuttles to retrieve the data left behind by Miller but a gigantic wave hits them and Doyle is killed. With a little delay the other two head back to Endurance where Doyle has spent 23 years all alone! On earth meanwhile, a now grown up Murphy is a NASA scientist working with professor Brand on an equation that will enable NASA to launch the space stations via gravity. However on his deathbed Brand confesses that he feels that it is impossible to do so and that he concealed his conclusion to keep hopes alive and also that Plan B was to restart the human population on a new planet using frozen embryos kept on board Endurance.

Murphy however believes that she can figure out the formula with additional data from a black hole’s singularity. Meanwhile the 3 remaining crew on Endurance have enough fuel to go to one more planet and they pick Mann as data is still being transmitted. They bring Mann out of cryosleep and he shows them the planet’s surface which is covered in icy glacier, perpetually cold and mostly inhospitable. However Mann, who knew about the embryos and Plan B all along, faked data to get the Endurance to pick him up and lures Cooper away to protect his secret. He & Cooper fight and the former breaks the latter’s visor and runs back to the shuttle. Romilly is killed by a bomb Mann set to protect his secret. Amelia rescues Cooper using the other cargo shuttle, and they arrive at Endurance in time to witness Mann docking improperly. The airlock explodes, killing Mann and causing serious damage, but Cooper uses the cargo shuttle to get Endurance under control. Almost out of fuel Cooper & Amelia plan to slingshot Endurance around Gargantua on a course toward Edmunds on the other side of the black hole while many years will pass on Earth. However Cooper & TARS use their shuttle to detach themselves from the Endurance in order to lower the load and give Amelia with CASE a better chance of reaching the planet.

TARS and Cooper collect data from the singularity and send it to Endurance before the shuttle is destroyed forcing Cooper to eject himself and TARS into space. They emerge into this inter-dimensional tesseract where time appears as a spatial dimension and portals show glimpses of Murphy’s childhood bedroom at various times. Cooper realizes that the wormhole’s creators are future humans transcending time and space, who have constructed the tesseract so he can communicate with Murphy as her “ghost” and save humanity. Using gravitational waves, Cooper encodes TARS’s data on the singularity into the adult Murphy’s watch, allowing her to solve Brand’s equation and launch the space stations. Once Murphy realizes that it is her father reaching out to her and she collects the data, the tesseract dissolves and Cooper is moved to the wormhole where he is pulled back in and is found floating near Saturn. When he comes to he finds himself onboard a large biological NASA space station on which the humans on earth now live. He is reunited briefly with an elderly Murphy, who pioneered the exodus of humans from earth to space stations in the Milky Way, and is now near death. She tells him to find Amelia who is implementing Plan B with CASE on Edmunds’s desert, hospitable planet. Cooper and TARS, who was also rescued from space, steal a NASA shuttle to travel to Edmunds’s Planet.

Bold, beautifully shot, ambitious, special effects laden, artistically gratifying, excellent acting (though I still can’t stand McConaughey) but the ending ruined it for me with with the “love” as a 5th dimension and the transcendal futuristic humans guiding Cooper to see Murph etc. For the last maybe 30 minutes I didn’t really enjoy the film though the rest is great. Surprised by some logical goofs though and choices that the characters make. Still, I shall give it an 8.5 outta 10, mainly for the science & scifi elements.

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RIP Leonard Nimoy

It will never be the same again. American actor, film director, poet, singer and photographer and the man who was the original – and for many of us the only Spock – Leonard Nimoy has passed away. He was 83 years old. His wife, Susan Bay Nimoy, confirmed his death, saying the cause was end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Mr. Nimoy announced last year that he had the disease, attributing it to years of smoking, a habit he had given up three decades earlier. He had been hospitalized earlier in the week.

Nimoy was born to Jewish immigrant parents in Boston, Massachusetts. He began his career in his early twenties, teaching acting classes in Hollywood and making minor film and television appearances through the 1950s, as well as playing the title role in Kid Monk Baroni. Foreshadowing his fame as a semi-alien, he played Narab, one of three Martian invaders in the 1952 movie serial Zombies of the Stratosphere. After the original Star Trek series, Nimoy starred in Mission: Impossible for two seasons, hosted the documentary series In Search of..., narrated Civilization IV, and made several well-received stage appearances. He also had a recurring role in the science fiction series Fringe. He frequently performed onstage, notably as Tevye in “Fiddler on the Roof.” His poetry was voluminous, and he published books of his photography. In 1978, Nimoy played Dr. David Kibner in Invasion of the Body Snatchers. He also did occasional work as a voice actor in animated feature films, including the character of Galvatron in The Transformers: The Movie in 1986.

From 1982 to 1987 Nimoy hosted a children’s educational show Standby: Lights, Camera, Action on Nickelodeon. Nimoy lent his voice as narrator to the 1994 IMAX documentary film, Destiny in Space, showcasing film-footage of space from nine Space Shuttle missions over four years time. In 1994, Nimoy performed as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in The Pagemaster. In 1998, he had a leading role as Mustapha Mond in the made-for-television production of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World. Nimoy provided the voice of Spock as a guest star in a Season 5 episode of the CBS sitcom, The Big Bang Theory. The episode is titled “The Transporter Malfunction” and aired on March 29, 2012, and was frequently mentioned by several of the main characters (especially Sheldon Cooper, who idolized Nimoy).

During and following Star Trek, Nimoy also released five albums of musical vocal recordings on Dot Records. On his final three albums, he sings popular folk songs of the era and cover versions of popular songs, such as “Proud Mary” and Johnny Cash’s “I Walk the Line“. There are also several songs on the later albums that were written or co-written by Nimoy.

In 1965, he made his first appearance in the rejected Star Trek pilot The Cage, and as a changed character would go on to play the character of the half-Vulcan, half-human Mr. Spock for 3 seasons of Star Trek : The Original Series until 1969, followed by eight feature films (from 1979 to 2013) and guest slots in the various spin-off series. The character of Spock has had a significant cultural impact and garnered Nimoy three Emmy Award nominations; TV Guide named Spock one of the 50 greatest TV characters. Nimoy’s fame as Spock was such that both of his autobiographies, I Am Not Spock (1975) and I Am Spock (1995), were written from the viewpoint of sharing his existence with the character.

And now he is gone. The Star Trek world weeps for the loss of a great person and actor.

Leonard Simon Nimoy (March 26, 1931 – February 27, 2015)

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The 2015 Academy Awards Winners Are….

The 87th Academy Awards ceremony concluded in the early hours of this morning (last night in the USA) and here are some of the winners:

Achievements in visual effects : Interstellar – Paul Franklin, Andrew Lockley, Ian Hunter and Scott Fisher

Best actress in a supporting role : Patricia Arquette – Boyhood

Best foreign language film : Ida — Poland

Best actor in a supporting role : J.K. Simmons – Whiplash

Animated Feature Film : Big Hero 6

Best Documentary Feature : CitizenFour

Best Original Score: John Stephens and Lonnie Lynn for Glory from Selma

Best Director : Alejandro González Iñárittu, Birdman

Best actor: Eddie Redmayne, The Theory Of Everything

Best actress: Julianne Moore, Still Alice

Best picture: Birdman

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Coma (1978)

Based on the 1977 Robin Cook novel of the same name and directed by Michael Crichton, Coma is a 1978 medical thriller starring Genevieve Bujold, Michael Douglas, Elizabeth Ashley, Richard Widmark, and Rip Torn (who I didn’t even recognize until the end). Also starring in small roles are pre-fame Ed Harris & Tom Sellek.

Dr. Susan Wheeler, who is having trouble in her relationship with fellow resident Dr. Mark Bellows, is devastated to learn that a close friend of hers, Nancy Greenley, is pronounced brain dead and ends up in a coma after minor surgery at the Boston Memorial Hospital. Susan, who works there along with Mark, decides to check up on the records and finds that over the previous year a number of other fit young people have ended up the same way. When another young & otherwise fit person suffers the same fate she investigates and finds out that all 12 cases took place in the same operation theater, OR 8, and that all the comatose bodies were taken to a remote facility named the Jefferson Institute. As she continues to investigate she runs into road blocks, seemingly from a Dr. George, Chief of Anesthesiology at Boston Memorial Hospital.

After a fun weekend with Mark she tries to enter the Jefferson but is told that tours are only conducted on Tuesdays. As she gets closer to the truth, a maintenance man, who offers to give her information, is killed by a security guard who then tries to kill Susan but she escapes from the hospital and finds out that Carbon Monoxide is being filtered through the gas tubes in OR 8. She runs to Mark’s apartment but on hearing him speak about her on the phone to someone, she panics and runs away. She goes for the tour at the institute and finds out that the Jerfferson is a front for harvesting organs to be sold to the highest bidder on the black market. Boston Memorial is in on this, purposely inducing comas in patients whose organs match those of potential buyers. She is almost caught by security but sneaks out on top of an ambulance that is delivering some organs to an airport.

Susan goes to see Dr. George Harris, the Chief of Surgery, to who she has confided her suspicions and tells him everything. However it turns out that Dr Harris is the mastermind behind this operation and he drugs her with a substance that creates a pain mimicking an appendix about to burst. He rushes her to surgery and says that he will do the operation himself. Mark meets Susan there and she manages to convince him that her life is in danger and he also hears Dr. Harris insist for OR 8. Mark stops the carbon monoxide from entering the gas tubes and takes Susan away after her operation is shown to not have an inflamed appendix. The two lovers have Dr. Harris exposed and the final scene is of him waiting to be escorted by two police officers.

It has some tense moments and the acting is top notch. The movie itself is a bit dull in places and I hope they do remake it someday with more excitement. 8 outta 10!

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Rio

I must admit that I do tend to avoid animated films at times (I dunno why, I end u liking them a lot when I do eventually see them) and this one was no exception. 2011’s Rio is an American 3D computer-animated musical adventure-comedy film produced by Blue Sky Studios and directed by Carlos Saldanha.

The film features the voices of Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, will.i.am, Jamie Foxx, George Lopez, Tracy Morgan, Jemaine Clement, Leslie Mann, Rodrigo Santoro, and Jake T. Austin. The film was also a box office success, grossing over $143 million in the United States and $484 million worldwide. The film was nominated for Academy Award for Best Original Song for the song “Real in Rio”.

Blu is a young Spix Macaw hatchling who was smuggled out of Brazil along with several other birds. In Moose Lake, Minnesota his crate falls off the truck it was being delivered in and is found by a little girl named Linda Gunderson. Linda raises Blu as her pet and keeps him by her side all the time and 15 years later he has a place of honour in the bookstore that she manages. Blu is highly domesticated but unable to fly as he was snatched away at a very young age. One day Brazilian ornithologist Túlio Monteiro comes to the store and invites Linda & Blu to go to Rio de Janerio with him as Blu is the last male of his species and it is imperative that he mates with a female Spix to ensure that the species continues. Linda accepts and they fly to Rio, where Blu meets and befriends a Red-crested Cardinal named Pedro and his Yellow Canary friend Nico. At the aviary Blu meets Jewel a fiercely independent female Spix Macaw who wishes to be free in the wilderness.

At night the bird are captured by Fernando, an orphaned street boy and a tough looking & scarred Cockatoo named Nigel, who are both working for a group of smugglers led by Marcel. Marcel wants to sell the birds on the black market and make a lot of money. Nigel seems to dislike all “pretty birds” as he once was a famous star but his role on a television program had been ruined by one, while Fernando seems to have second thoughts. Blu manages to escape with Jewel and they make their way to the jungle. Fernando meets Linda and Túlio and helps them find the birds, while Blu and Jewel meet Rafael, a Toco Toucan, who offers to take them to his bulldog friend, Luiz, to remove their leg chain. He attempts to teach Blu how to fly, before they meet up with Pedro and Nico.

Nigel hires some marmosets to help capture Blu & Jewel who are taken by Pedro and Nico to a Rio-style dance party, where they perform a duet and begin to fall in love. When the marmosets attempt to capture them, a fight ensues after which the 5 birds escape on a train. Fernando, who has met up with Linda and Túlio, takes them to the smugglers’ hideout, where they discover that the birds have already been moved out. Meanwhile, Blu and the others meet Luiz, who releases the chain holding Blu and Jewel. After the two get into a heated argument, they decide to go their separate ways. Pedro & Nico witness Nigel capturing Jewel and inform Blu & Rafel who rush to the carnival to rescue her. As Linda and Túlio pose as dancers in blue macaw costumes to enter the carnival, Nigel captures Blu and the group.

As Marcel takes the birds in a plane, Blu destroys his cage using a fire extinguisher and releases the other captive birds. However, Nigel attacks the macaws, injuring Jewel. Blu sends Nigel flying into the plane’s engine using the fire extinguisher, causing the plane to fall. Jewel falls out of the plane’s open cargo hatch towards the ocean. Jumping out of the plane to rescue her, Blu finally discovers that he is able to fly and carries her to Linda and Túlio for help. Later, they adopt Fernando and organize a sanctuary to protect the jungle from smugglers. Blu and Jewel eventually raise three children together, and celebrate with their friends. Meanwhile, Nigel (who actually survived the plane accident) is ridiculed for his loss of feathers, and the smugglers are sent to jail.

It’s a fun and feel good film as most of these animated comedy/romantic films are. I like the storyline and the actors did a great job with their voices. 8 outta 10!

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All I Have To Say About That Is “Asphinctersayswhat”

Take a quote from your favorite movie — there’s the title of your post. Now, write!

Exactly! This is ofcourse a quote from Wayne Campbell (played by Mike Myers) from that excellent movie Wayne’s World! Party on Wayne, Party on Garth! And this is Wayne & Garth Algar’s reactionary question to douchebags who have just told them something that they don’t like or agree with. Or just when they don’t plain like someone who is a phony.

That is my reaction to assholes & douche-bags I met in real life. And the world is full of them. That’s a plain awful truth and the quicker that you understand that the quicker you will be ok with it. It’s a fact of life and nothing you can do will ever change that. The only thing you can do is to either cry / moan /bitch and complain about it or you can try and adjust to that fact and learn to not let them affect you too much. And perhaps joke about it and a good laugh with your friends about said douche-bags.

Life is to short to let them make it less enjoyable for you. Adjust, change and be free. And have fun!

Prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress.com.

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Taken 3

The subject of many internet memes, the Taken series has made Liam Neeson a household action movie star name all over the globe. The 3rd & final installment is directed by Olivier Megaton and written by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen and once again stars stars Neeson, Maggie Grace & Famke Janssen with Forest Whitaker, Sam Spurell & Dougray Scott joining the cast. Also returning are Leland Orser & Jon Gries.

Bryan Mills, has just had a brief visit at his daughter, Kim’s, house – giving her a large teddy bear as an early birthday gift. Kim, is distracted as she has just found out that she is pregnant but doesn’t let on to either Bryan or her boyfriend who comes in a couple of minutes later. Lenore, who is having problems with her husband Stuart St. John, reaches out to Bryan and tries to rekindle her relationship with her ex-husband. Though Bryan loves her, he refuses to act upon his feelings while she is still married. Later Stuart visits Bryan and warns him off from meeting his wife so regularly and Bryan agrees.

The next day while out buying bagels Bryan receives an urgent text from Lenore asking him to meet her back at his home and on reaching there he finds her dead body. The LAPD arrives on the scene and attempts to arrest Bryan on suspicion but he escapes from them and contacts his buddies Casey, Gilroy & Harris for help. Meanwhile inspector Franck Dotzler, is assigned to the case and becomes fascinated as he reads up on Bryan’s unique history. Bryan collects equipment & ammo from a hideout and retraces Lenore’s steps the previous day. He tracks her movements to a convenience store and recovers surveillance footage of Lenore being abducted by unidentified men at a gas station. LAPD detectives arrive and unknown to them, Bryan allows himself to be arrested, then commandeers the police car to access LAPD’s computer system from the vehicle’s laptop to analyze information. At a restroom in her college, Bryan meets up with Kim, who is being secretly followed by the cops via an electronic bug they placed on her clothing. As Bryan tells her that he is investigating her mother’s death, she informs him that Stuart has hired bodyguards and that she is pregnant.

Bryan again evades the cops at the college but is followed by some Russian mobsters who attack his car and push it over a cliff. Bryan escapes and then kills the Russians which leads him to Stuart – they were hired by him! He abducts and interrogates Stuart, who reveals that his debt to an ex-KGB Spetsnaz and Afghan War veteran operative named Oleg Malankov was the probable motive for Lenore’s murder and that Stuart was forced to send the men in Bryan’s direction as Malankov feared that Bryan would retaliate. With the help of his ex-CIA colleagues Bryan collects Kim from Stuart’s house, and using Stuart as decoy he enters Malankov’s heavily guarded private penthouse and kills off his men. A mortally wounded Malankov, reveals that Stuart had played both men against each other – the businessman had hoped that Bryan & Malankov would kill each other leaving his debt free and with Lenore dead he could also collect a $12 million life insurance police on her. When Bryan arrives back down, he finds that Stuart has abducted Kim and on his way to a private airfield. With the cops hot on his tail, Bryan is able to disable Stuart’s private jet before it takes off by ramming into one of it’s wheels and overpowers Stuart, telling him that he will spend time in prison for his involvement in Lenore’s murder.

As the LAPD cops led by Dotzler arrives on the scene, Bryan warns Stuart that he will later answer for her death. Dotzler and the LAPD arrive and arrest Stuart and Bryan but due to his CIA connections, Mills is later let free with his murder charge cleared. In the aftermath of Stuart’s arrest, Kim, who is pregnant, informs Bryan that she wants to name her baby Lenore, after her mother. A somewhat fitting end to the movie franchise, though this one pales in comparison to the first one and even the sequel was much better. The film was received poorly by the critics, despite that the film was a box office success, grossing over $267 million. I give it a 7 outta 10!

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Sex After Kids

Sex After Kids is a Canadian comedy film, written and directed by Jeremy Lalonde and released in 2013. The film features an ensemble cast, and depicts various ways in which adults struggle to reconcile their sex lives with the demands of parenthood. The film was funded in part by a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo, which raised $61,000. Among the ensemble cast are tv show regulars Kristen-Holden Reid (Lost Girl/The Listener), Zoie Palmer (Lost Girl), Ennis Esmer (The Listener), Paul Amos (Lost Girl), Mary Krohnert, Kate Hewlett, Jay Brazeau, Mimi Kuzyk, Katie Boland, Amanda Brugel, Peter Keleghan, Shannon Beckner, Gordon Pinsent and Kristin Booth.

The movie shows these people, who are connected, struggling to keep an active sex life post having kids. Jules & Ben haven’t had sex in a year and with a 6 month old baby and obsessing about laundry & house work Jules just isn’t into it. Their sex therapist’s advices them to have sex every night for 100 nights straight, which doesn’t work out and Jules only getting aroused by the vibration of her washer against her body and later guide them after both of them were close to cheating on each other. Gage, a single father with a young son, on the other hand has no problem in attracting women but finds silly reasons to stop seeing them (including one funny scene in which the woman he is having sex with calls him ‘daddy’ putting him off). He joins a “mom group” for support in raising his kid. His sister Jody & her wife Larissa are a lesbian couple with a baby and their relationship is being tested by their frequent disagreements. Gage & Jody’s parents Horton & Dolores are middle-aged grandparents who having just had their youngest daughter Markee move out to her own place are looking to spice things up at home. Although it was Horton’s idea, he is initially overwhelmed by the revelation that his wife has never had an orgasm by him and by the different things she wants to try out.

Lous is the scene stealer of the movie, a British expat in Toronto and single mother who lives with her nanny brother Payton. She had decided to go the donor sperm route and have a child wanting to love someone but is struggling to have a social life and feels that she is horrible with babies, especially since Payton seems to be so good at it. He advices her to not hold out for a relationship but go for casual sex but they backfire on her. Vanessa, a former model & tv presenter, who had a son is seen less as a sexual being and more as a housewife & mom by her husband Sean, who runs a successful business. She tries to lose the baby weight and look attractive for him but the initial efforts are hilariously unsuccessful. As Sean seems less into having sex with her, she undergoes a make over to make herself more appealing and it seems to work but she later catches him having sex with a single mom named Bethany, who is the same mom group with Gage, Lou & Jules. Gage asks Lou out on a date and she cooks dinner for him but accidentally hand him a glass spiked with a heavy dose of Valium, which she meant to take herself to calm her down, and he falls asleep in her living room.

Markee tries to seduce Ben and almost succeeds and Jules kisses Gage but they manage to work things out by the end. Vanessa leaves Sean and joins the mom group and becomes friends with Bethany; Gage & Lou try dating again while Jody & Larissa work out their issues. They all meet for Gage’s son’s birthday party at a park as Horton & Dolores, who have managed to spark things sexually, go on a cruise. It’s a funny and sweet movie and it has it’s moments. It’s definitely low budget and nothing really stands out; look at it as actors who know each other having some fun while being filmed. The majority of the cast are parents of young children and signed onto the film before the script had even been written. They were encouraged to offer up their insight and own experience and stories of the film. I would rate it a solid 7.5 outta 10!

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John Wick

John Wick is a 2014 American action thriller film directed by Chad Stahelski and David Leitch. The movie stars Keanue Reeves, Michael Nyqvist, Alfie Allen, Adrianne Palicki, Bridget Moynahan, Dean Winters, Ian McShane, John Leguizamo, and Willem Dafoe. The film pays homage to Hong Kong cinema’s choreographed fight and gun battles as well as other martial art films as well as Spaghetti Westerns.

John Wick is a retired contract assassin who quit the buisness after meeting Helen, who would become his wife. After Helen dies due to illness John receives a delivery that she had arranged prior to her death – a puppy named Daisy. Initially distant from the pup, John quickly connects with the dog after driving around town the next day. At a gas station Russian gang members led by their leader Iosepf (Alfie Allen aka Theon Greyjoy from Game of Thrones) demand that John sell them his car to which he bluntly refuses. The three men follow John back to his home, break in and beat him up, kill the puppy and steal his car causing some other damage as well. Ioseph and his goons are informed by Aurelio, the owner of a chop shop that they stole John Wick’s car and that he won’t touch it. Ioseph’s father, Russian mob boss Viggo Tarasov, informs his father about Aurolio’s hostile rejection the mobster calls Aurelio, only to be stunned on knowing whose car his son stole.

Viggo berates Isoeph for stealing from “Baba Yiga” (Russian for the Boogeyman) & killing his dog; John was his best assassin and had helped Viggo gain control of his syndicate by single-handedly eliminating all competition, a task Viggo considered “impossible”. Viggo attempts to dissuade John from retribution but John disregards it and must fend off a hit squad that Viggo sends to his house. After dispatching them off and calling a cleaning crew John hseeks refuge at the Continental, a hotel that exclusively caters to assassins, with the rule that no business can be conducted on premises. However he must fend off from a female assassin after Viggo puts a contract out on him and fend off numerous Russian mobsters and killers before he can get to Ioseph. And ofcourse once he does kill the son will the Russian mob boss leave him alone? There’s also a fellow veteran assassin named Markus who is sympathetic to John’s situation and wants to help, but will it come at a steep price?

Wonderfully well choreographed this thriller starts off at a slow pace with the funeral and John adjusting to life as a widower and then getting the puppy. Once the film gets going it barely takes a breath and is edge of your seat excitement. Reeves shines in this type of role and I smell a sequel of two in the near future. The cinematography is amazing and everything looks so well done. With a great cast to boot, I think this was my favourite action based movie in a long time. 8 outta 10!

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Nominees For The 87th Academy Awards (Partial List)

The list of nominations for the 87th Academy Awards : this is only 6 categories and the only ones I usually look out for. Take a look.

Best Picture
Birdman”
“Boyhood”
“Selma”
“The Theory of Everything”
“The Imitation Game”
“The Grand Budapest Hotel”
“American Sniper”
“Whiplash”

Actress in a Leading Role
Julianne Moore, “Still Alice”
Felicity Jones, “The Theory of Everything”
Rosamund Pike, “Gone Girl”
Reese Witherspoon, “Wild”
Marion Cotillard, “Two Days One Night”

Actor in a Leading Role
Michael Keaton, “Birdman”
Eddie Redmayne, “The Theory of Everything”
Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Imitation Game”
Steve Carell, “Foxcatcher”
Bradley Cooper, “American Sniper”

Directing
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, “Birdman”
Richard Linklater, “Boyhood”
Wes Anderson, “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
Morten Tyldum, “The Imitation Game”
Bennett Miller, “Foxcatcher”

Actress in a Supporting Role
Patricia Arquette, “Boyhood”
Emma Stone, “Birdman”
Keira Knightley, “The Imitation Game”
Meryl Streep, “Into the Woods”
Laura Dern, “Wild”

Actor in a Supporting Role
J.K. Simmons, “Whiplash”
Edward Norton, “Birdman”
Ethan Hawke, “Boyhood”
Mark Ruffalo, “Foxcatcher”
Robert Duvall, “The Judge”

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The Inbetweeners 2

The Inbetweeners 2 is the second movie to be based on the popular British sitcom that originally aired on E4 from 2008 to 2010, after 2011’s hilarious The Inbetweeners Movie. While the series was set during the 4 lads high school days and the first movie was a coming of age tale post high school with the boys on their holiday in Crete. This time round it’s the 4 lads having a bit of an adventure in Australia.

3 years after the events of the first film Will, Neil and Jay’s girlfriends have all broken up with them while Simon is unhappy with his obsessive and abusive girlfriend Lucy. While Neil is working in a bank Simon & Will are depressed and often bullied in college and Jay is taking a year off in Australia. After being denied entry at a dorm party and having Will’s furniture taped to his ceiling (again) the 3 of them decided to go join Jay in Sydney after receiving an email about how he is living it up as a star DJ, having sex with a lot of girls and sleeping in a mansion. However when they do make it to Australia they find that Jay was lying through his teeth; in reality he is working as the toilet attendant in the club and sleeps in a tent outside his uncle’s house. While at the club Will runs into Katie, who was his friend during childhood. Before they turn in for the night, Simon Skypes with Lucy in an attempt to break-up with Lucy via a Skype call however Jay’s uncle interferes and tricks Lucy into thinking Simon asked her to marry him, to Simon’s horror.

The next day the four friends travel by car to a youth hostel in Byron Bay where Katie and several other backpackers are staying and Will tries to become friends with Ben who does not seem impressed with him. Will also noticed that his mother seems to be living with someone when he Skypes her, but she denies it. It turns out that Jay was in Australia to try and win back his ex Jane who was working at a water park in Byron Bay and so the next day the quartet visit the park along with several of the backpackers. The staff inform Jay that Jane quit her job and is now in the Outbacks. After a hilarious song & playing of a borrowed guitar Will & a drunk Katie almost have sex but she falls asleep on him and he is mistaken for trying to rape her. In the morning things are sorted out but while the other 3 want to try and find Jane in the outbacks, Will wants to stay back and try his luck with Katie. But that night he struggles to fit in with the ‘spiritual’ activities of the travellers and on discovering that Katie is seeing multiple people at once, Will gets angry and rants a foul mouth tirade against them, which leads Katie into having sex with Ben. Will catches a plane the next day to reach his friends in an Outback town and joins them in their car.

While driving to Jane’s new workplace the car runs out of fuel and stuck in the desert without food or water. A dehydrated Simon almost drinks some urine from Neil but the latter only ends up splashing it on his friend’s face. The group hold hands together as they realise that they will most likely die, but are rescued by Jane and her co-workers and it’s only been two hours since the car stalled. Although Jane is touched by Jay trying to find her she does not take him back. The boys go back to Sydney and find Will’s mom, who has been sleeping with their old nemesis & former school teacher, and Jay’s dad there. Jay gets angry at his uncle who insults Jane and slaps him, which causes a fight between Jay’s dad and his uncle. Simon finds out via Skype that Lucy has been cheating on him with Pete, his university friend – but he is elated and abruptly closes the call with her. The four boys decide to travel to Vietnam in a montage during the film’s credits – they are seen hooking with transvestites! After their return to England Neil starts a relationship with one of the backpackers and Will’s mother announces her engagement, much to Will’s horror.

Filled with gross, young men’s humour and jokes the highlight of the movie is Neil pooping in his swim trunks and the poop “chasing” Will down the waterslide as he screams and it landing on his face only for him to puke violently in the water afterwards. There’s ribbing and joking and gross stuff all over the film and not everyone will enjoy that. But I find it hilarious so if dirty English humour is your cup of tea then pop in this film and enjoy. 8 outta 10!

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