Thursday, 31 January 2013

Disney's 'Paperman' Short Film

Sorry I haven't been blogging much recently- lack of time and inspiration but today, this amazingly sweet little video popped on my Facebook page and I cannot help but share it!

Shown before Disney's 'Wreck-It Ralph', the short film which mixes traditional hand drawing and computer animation titled 'Paperman' is a wonderfully simple yet sweet movie. In black and white and a highlight of red, it is captivating also, hence it's Oscar nomination.

Check out the stunning short film below:

Saturday, 26 January 2013

'Upside Down' Film Trailer Preview


The trailer to upcoming sci-fi romance 'Upside Down' has been released.

Jim Sturgess and Kirsten Dunst star as lovers who are separated by gravity. In a solar system where twin planets have opposing gravitational pulls, people are forbidden to cross to the other planet. Against all odds, Adam must fight to find a way to be together with Eden.

It looks like a visually spectacular movie and with romance and action/thriller thrown in- can't wait to see it.

The movie will be released in August. Check out the trailer below:

'Les Miserables' (2013) Film Review

I just went to see Tom Hooper's musical Les Miserables and was blown away- nominated for 8 Oscars, 9 BAFTAS and winner of three Golden Globes- this is definitely a MUST SEE MOVIE.

When I was a young boy, I was taken to see the West End musical but given the seats we had and my lack of attention, I did not get the story and found it rather boring... then having seen the 1998 film version which I surprisingly liked, lit a spark of excitement for the moving tale of faith, grace and love.

Les Miserables tells of a criminal Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) who is on parole and after having no place to stay, is accepted into a church by a bishop, who feeds him and gives him a place to sleep. Tempted by a set of silverware, he steals it and runs away in the night. After being caught and brought back to the bishop, Jean Valjean is shown grace and mercy- the bishop declares that he has given him the silverware and sets him free. Moved by such an act of compassion, Valjean turns his life around and becomes mayor of Montriuel and a factory owner.

Fantine (Anne Hathaway), one of the factory workers is cast out and unjustly loses her job after being discovered of having a child out of wedlock. Unable to pay for her daughter Cosette, she resorts to selling her hair and prostitution. Walking by after an incident, Jean Valjean recognises Fantine and rescues her from her predicament. On her deathbed, he promises to look after her daughter Cosette.

Police Inspector Javert (Russell Crowe) has been looking for Jean Valjean ever since he skipped parole and meets him again in Montreuil, giving chase wherever he goes. With Cosette (Amanda Seyfried) in his care, Jean Valjean must do everything he can to protect her whilst avoiding capture, always on the run, but when Cosette meets Marius (Eddie Redmayne), his plans are thrown and he risks everything for her happiness.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Allison Harvard for Gladys Magazine by Bryan Kong

Allison Harvard can be seen in a recent spread for Gladys magazine, shot by Bryan Kong. The ANTM All Star is in a fantastical and mesmerising shoot full of mystery and artistry.

Check out the rest of the spread below:

Sunday, 20 January 2013

'The Incredible Hulk' Film Review

The first phase of The Avengers began with this version of Hulk, played by Edward Norton. Bruce Banner, after a freak experiment, will turn into a veiny green out-of-control monster when he gets angry, and is on the run from the people who want to use him to make military weapons.

Determined to cure himself in order to return to a normal life, he stays off the radar and tries everything he can experimentally. But when his cover is blown, he returns 'home' and with the help of a first love Betty Ross (Liv Tyler), tries to find a cure.

When soldier Emil Blonsky (Tim Roth) covets the power and strength of the Hulk, he takes a small dosage of the serum and becomes a heinous version of the original and becomes a threat to New York... and the Hulk is called on to stop him.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

'Mud' Film Trailer Preview

The official trailer to 'Mud' has just been released. Starring Matthew McConaughey and Reese Witherspoon, the movie tells of two boys who come across a murderer and helps him to escape capture and find his lover.

'Mud' was first shown at Cannes and looks like an exciting movie! It will be released in April. Check out the trailer below:

'Seeking a Friend for the end of the world' Film Review

With all the end of the world craze of last year, 'Seeking a Friend' is a welcome comedy, starring one of my favourite actresses Keira Knightley and Steve Carell... what could go wrong?

Dodge (Steve Carell) is a middle-aged man who, upon hearing the world will end, continues his everyday routine. Even as his wife leaves him, he goes to work, eats microwaved food and so on. But his meaningless last days change when he meets his neighbour Penny (Keira Knightley), a young and quirky girl who inspires him to find his high school sweetheart before the world ends. 

The two go on an adventure to rekindle Dodge's long lost love and to reunite Penny with her family. On the way, they meet some strange people and find themselves in outrageous predicaments, but will they make it in time?

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Doodle Landmarks by Sagaki Keita

Japanese doodle artist Sagaki Keita creates wonderfully accurate images of renowned landmarks by his crazy doodles, consisting of body parts  objects, cute animals, characters and even a blob of poo. The animated drawings are full of life and you can just spend ages investigating the composition and the humour of the objects you can spot.

Apart from landmarks, Keita also 'paints' famous paintings and statues. 

Check out more images below:

Monday, 14 January 2013

The Golden Globes 2013 Awards Red Carpet

 The awards season has kicked into motion with last night's Golden Globes. Les Miserables took the Best motion picture for comedy/musical with Hugh Jackman taking the best actor award and Anne Hathaway taking best supporting actress (no surprise there) and looked phenomenal with her pixie cut and slender white dress.

Ben Affleck won best director for Argo as well as the film taking home best motion picture action.

Adele's Skyfall won best song, although Taylor Swift's SAFE AND SOUND was in my opinion, unrivaled. The singer looked older compared to her usual innocent look which didn't work for her this occasion.

Jennifer Lawrence won for Silver Linings Playbook but couldn't help bring some of that Hunger Games fire with a loud red dress, but  definitely got stood on by Jessica Alba and Zooey Deschanel who looked even more fiery hot, but they didn't go home with the award now did they?

Saturday, 12 January 2013

'The Call' Film Trailer Preview

A trailer for Halle Berry's upcoming thriller 'The Call' has been released.

The Cloud Atlas star plays an emergency operator called Jordan who receives a call from an intruder and is unable to do anything as she listens to the sound of his victims, one of a string of murders. With a serial killer on the loose, Jordan is once again called by a girl and she might try everything she can to save her... before she gets killed.

The trailer for this movie looks absolutely breathtaking and intense. I can't wait to see it. The movie will be released in March. Check out the trailer below:

Thursday, 10 January 2013

'Stay' by Rihanna ft. Mikky Ekko

Despite my disgust at Rihanna's latest album 'Apologetic' (boy she's popping them faster than rabbits mate), there was one undeniably good song amongst all the brainless 'hits', which is titled 'Stay' and it features Mikky Ekko.

I have been listening to the song non-stop for the past week and it is just one of those tracks you can't get out of your head for all the right reasons. I would love for this to be a single and wow- a video could just make this song.

Check it out below and lyrics after the jump:

The Oscars 2013 Nominations

So this year's Academy Award nominees have finally been announced. 

Best film

Beasts Of The Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Best Director

David O Russell - Silver Linings Playbook
Ang Lee - Life Of Pi
Steven Spielberg - Lincoln
Michael Haneke - Amour
Benh Zeitlin - Beasts Of The Southern Wild

Best Actor

Bradley Cooper - Silver Linings Playbook
Joaquin Phoenix - The Master
Daniel Day-Lewis - Lincoln
Denzel Washington - Flight
Hugh Jackman - Les Miserable

Best Actress

Jessica Chastain - Zero Dark Thirty
Quvenzhané Wallis - Beasts of the Southern Wild
Jennifer Lawrence - Silver Linings Playbook
Naomi Watts - The Impossible
Emmanuelle Riva - Armour

Best Supporting Actor

Alan Arkin - Argo
Robert De Niro - Silver Linings Playbook
Tommy Lee Jones - Lincoln
Christoph Waltz - Django Unchained
Philip Seymour Hoffman - The Master

Best Supporting Actress

Amy Adams - The Master
Sally Field - Lincoln
Anne Hathaway - Les Miserables
Helen Hunt - The Sessions
Jacki Weaver - Silver Linings Playbook

Best Foreign Film

War witch
A Royal Affair

Best Adapted Screenplay

Beasts Of The Southern Wild
Silver Linings Playbook

Best Animated Feature Film

The Pirates! Band Of Misfits

Best Original Song

Before My Time - Chasing Ice
Everybody Needs A Best Friend - Ted
Pi's Lullaby - Life Of Pi
Suddenly - Les Miserables

I have to say there aren't that many surprises here this year. Many of the films nominated for Best film were highly tipped and for Skyfall to get nominated was just wishful thinking. Lincoln seems set to be this year's big winner with Les Miserables not far behind on nominations. 
I would have expected 'Anna Karenina' to have gained one or two of the big awards, but costume design and production were its strengths, whilst underrated film of the year 'Cloud Atlas' didn't even make the visual effects category, instead dominated by this year's summer blockbusters The Avengers and The Dark Knight Rises.
Both Pixar's Brave and Disney's 'Wreck it Ralph' were nominated for best animated feature- I'd be happy for either to win. 
Adele's Skyfall is likely to win best original song.

Jane Randall Test Shots (Jan 2012)

Some candid test shots of Jane Randall have appeared with the model looking clean but with an edge. THe clothes also look quite robust and crisp with a nice tone to the images and the background.

Check out more images below:

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Pokemon X and Y 3DS Games Preview

The next generation of Pokemon games has just been announced. Titled X and Y, the new games will be made for the Nintendo 3DS. No surprises there. 

With full 3D graphics and all new Pokemon, the game looks absolutely phenomenal. The trailer showcases great new footage and the world looks fantastic. 

I actually think the legendaries work really well for logo and look quite stunning, even though the deer one looks a bit like Dialga crossed with Suicine.

The starters also look ugly apart from the fire one which is my likely choice but we'll wait and see what they evolve into and their stats shall we?

Pokemon X and Y are set to be released in October. Check out the trailer below:

UPDATE: Box art released:

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

APP: Triple Town Games Review

OK. So since my sister got her Kindle Fire, I have been hooked to Triple Town- a cute puzzle game which requires you to build up a flourishing city using grass, bushes and trees. Three grass makes a bush, three bush makes a tree and three trees make a house etc etc.

But beware, every now and again you will get a cute but angry little bear which will take up a space on your 6x6 grid, preventing you from building on it. Thankfully, trapping the bears will demolish them and a tombstone will form. And yes, you can combine the tombs to form a church and so on...

Space is commodity in this game and it is deeper and more complex than it appears. Meticulous space planning and strategy is required to keep the game moving, racking up the points and upgrading your buildings as much as possible.

With the aid of rare power ups and an item store (where you can buy bushes etc), the game offers many surprises and isn't as difficult as you'd think. A handy tutorial mode is also available for new players.

The graphics are well rendered and extremely cute which is definitely one of the key factors I keep coming back to it. The surprising depth and complexity of such a simple game makes it delightful to play.

The app can be downloaded for free for Android systems and iPhones, with limited turns in place (which regenerate over time) but unlimited turns can be purchased which also unlock other maps.

This game is highly addictive and I found myself frustratingly waiting for my next turn just so I can build a house, trap a bear or zap a ninja bear. I even managed to get my sister hooked to it as well!

If you like a good puzzle on the go combined with city building elements and cute angry bears, this game is for you!

The game-child of Bejeweled and Civilisation. GET IT NOW.

'Blood Red Road' by Moira Young Book Review

Geared up to be the next teen craze, MTV says this book will 'satisfy the cravings of The Hunger Games fans'. With a movie in production (tentatively set for a 2014 release), will this truly be the next big thing? or just a hopeless wannabe?

In a dystopian future, Saba, her twin brother and her family live in the Silverlake, a harsh and barren land. One day, when her brother is taken by the feared Tonton and her father is killed, Saba vows to save her beloved twin at all cost.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

'The Amazing Spiderman' Film Review

I was eagerly anticipating this movie when it hit the cinemas knowing this would be a reboot- I loved the original trilogy starring Tobey Maguire and I felt this movie would detract from the original, but add more depth and story as it focuses on a different time of Peter Parker's life.

The movie begins with young Peter Parker being taken to his aunt and uncle's house whilst his parents go away for business, only to result in their tragic death. Zipping to his high school years where he's at the bottom of the social spectrum, he discovers a satchel left by his father that will change his life.

After seeing a photo of his father with a colleague, it leads Peter to Oscorp, a company exploring cross species genetics. After bumping into Gwen Stacy, his high school crush, he explores the facilities and ends up being bitten by a spider... transforming him into Spiderman.

As he learns to harness his new found powers, a tragedy happens, challenging him to use his powers for good. When a new evil arises in the city, it is up to him to stop 'The Lizard' before it's too late.

Saturday, 5 January 2013

'Harvest Moon: Sunshine Islands' DS Game Review

My last association with Harvest Moon was on the Game Boy Advance when I got hooked to 'Friends of Mineral Town'. Recalling my love for the game I decided to return to the series. After reading reviews of the five DS games released since, I settled on 'Sunshine Islands' as it had the highest rating and to be fair, they're all pretty similar.

Arriving into town with little other than the clothes on your back, you are given a ranch and some tools with which to farm. Just like all other Harvest Moon games, the aim is to build up your ranch by growing crops, owning animals, making friends and discovering the secrets, in this case, of Sunshine Islands.

What was once a flourishing series of islands has now been reduced to small cluster; the rest have been sunken and it is your task to find 'sunstones' which can be used to raise them and return the land to its former glory.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Scarlett Johansson in VOGUE Russia (October 2012)

I can't believe I missed this! Don't even know how but Scarlett Johansson's October spread in VOGUE Russia is divine. The clothes are fabulous, full of colour and the style of the shoot is tremendously wonderful. 

This is one of the more glamorous spreads the fashion icon has appeared in recently.

Check out the rest of the spread below:

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Scarlett Johansson in Esquire Russia (Jan 2013)

Apart from the Feb 2013 ELLE UK cover, Scarlett Johansson also covers Russia Esquire's January 2013 cover, in a simple, beautiful and elegant portrait, highlighting the star's radiant beauty. 

I can't wait to see the rest of this spread. Watch this space!!

Scarlett Johansson in ELLE UK Magazine (Feb 2013)

Scarlett Johansson covers the February edition of UK ELLE magazine. The actress talks about being a bombshell and how unimportant marriage is to her right now.

The A list 'Avengers' star can be seen in 'Hitchcock' where she reinacts the famous shower scene as Janet Leigh and later in 2013 opposite Joseph Gordon Levitt in Don Jon's addiction. 

Check out more images below:


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