Sunday, 25 March 2012

May The Odds Be Ever In Your Favour

So, I'm obsessed with The Hunger Games.

When I first heard about it from a friend, I just thought, 'Oh cool, sounds good." Then when photo from the production started appearing on the net, I thought "Oh cool, that look good, I'll watch it when it comes out". Then when more articles started coming out in magazines and newspapers saying it was like 'the new Twilight' I thought 'WHAT! Shiz, I'm not watching that if its anything like those crap films".

But as the release date crept closer, I read more about the film, the original books and got excited, mostly because it looked amazing and the concept was brilliant (of course people compared it to Battle Royale) and its NOTHING like Twilight.

There is a better poster with just the symbol of the mocking jay in fire and the better tag line 'May the odds be ever in your favour', but I can't find it. But this poster also puts across the point too.

The Hunger Games, based on the book by Suzanne Collins, is set in nation of Panem, a dystopian place risen out of war and disaster in the ruins of what was once known as North America.  70 years before the film/book is set, the 13 Districts rebelled as the controlling Capitol. But they were defeated and as a continuing punishment to the Districts, The Hunger Games was created. Every year, each District hold a raffle, called a 'Reaping' in the book/film, where one male and females aged between 12 -18 will picked to compete in the Hunger Games. There are 24 contestants, called Tributes, who battle to the death on a live televised show until one remains.

The story follows Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), who is from the poverty stricken District 12. She volunteers herself for the games when her younger sister, Primrose, is chosen. Along with Peeta Mallark (Josh Hutcherson) , the male tribute, she is taken to the Capitol where she trains for the games as well as trying to gain support from sponsors. Their mentor Haymitch (Woody Harrelson), a previous winner, advises them and teaches them ways to stay alive in the arena.

The film was amazing. I did think it might not show how cruel and gruesome the actual Hunger Games is because it was a 12A but oh my it did, I welled up a few times, especially when one of the tributes is killed (if you've read the book, you know who I mean). I thought I would be watching just another big film but I love story and the characters are amazing. But not as amazing as Head Game Maker, Seneca Crane's beard! It even has it's own facebook page

Beards aside, the film is nothing without Katniss Everdeen. The book is written in first person from her point of view and that is sort of carried out in the film. The idea and the actual games are really quite terrifying. The thought of being that young and knowing you're going to die is shown throughout the film but its also very sinister as everyone in the Capitol treat the games like any other reality show. They don't understand or care about the overall impact the deaths have on the Districts. It is harrowing without showing that much blood.

I've always been a fan of dystopian stories where there are no supernatural elements and barely any great technical marvels. Hunger Games delivers this perfectly. There is a great line between the poor Districts and the wealthy Capitol. The Capitol and the Arena are very science fiction, if you get what I mean, but its not over the top. The people and their costumes are but it just shows the distinctions between the people in the Districts who dress like they are from the 1930's and present day, as opposed to the crazy clothes the Capitol people wear. These elements create a mixed unusual setting, a perfect combination of 'dystopian science fiction action drama'.

I liked the fact that the trailer for the film shows nothing from the Hunger Games themselves, just the part where all the tributes run. It made the experience of watching that part of the film more exciting because it felt that you are actually watching them play as if it were real time.

To address the 'Twilight' thing, yes there are two boys and one girl in the film and in all the promotion photos and such, there is always Gale, Katniss' best friend and hunting buddy, Katniss and Peeta, the other tribute who has been in love with Katniss since they were very young. Does this ring any bells? NO because they are all humans and not stupid vampires and werewolves. There is also the fact that Katniss and Gale are not a couple, hell she doesn't even see Gale that way (read the book). And to make it even more departed from Twilight, that trio are in the films, alot. Gale appears in the first 15-20 minutes, barely. Then there are one or two shots of him later on, but that's it! It is not a love triangle, the story is about survival and hope. But if I had to say anything about a love story, yes Peeta loves Katniss and I think by the end of the first story, Katniss loves Peeta, at least she is beginning to. But you can judge for yourselves.

To round this up, here are some film stills, to get you excited about the film too. 

I leave you with a link to the website:

And may the odds be ever in your favour.

A Fox Like Craft Affair

Yesterday my sister and I went to awesome craft fair, Crafty Fox Spring Market at the Dogstar pub in Brixton. All the stalls were so pretty filled in the brim with everything crafty, all different designs and makes (most had an animal or tea theme) and I definitely be looking a few websites and blogs because of the fair/market.

The pub had three level, both 1 and 2 had various stalls and on 2 there was a fantastic tea area where we bought banoffee cupcakes (and consumed them later), they were delicious. Then on the top floor various workshops were taking place. By the time we got there, the origami class was over but to my sister's delight there was a knitting workshop going on. Of course we joined in and we were taught by a woman who has been knitting for 42 years and had learnt to knit at the age of 5 along with the rest of the 42 people in her class at the time. My sister (named yellow, because that was the colour of the wool she was using) and another girl (white) who had joined in got the hang of it quite quickly but I (red) struggled on for about half an hour but even after I thought I understood what was happening I had messed up lines. In conclusion, I don't think knitting is for me.

Despite my lack of aptitude for knitting, I had a really great time and I know my sister was very excited about knitting and finally knowing how to start it. But I am disappointed I couldn't be there for the second day, as the workshop, printing your own tote bag, was more my thing. As I've always loved fancy tote bags.

The craft fair was also a great place for inspiration (hinting at my brooches and cards) and has made me want to branch out of the designs I've done.

Unfortunately, due to the fact that I used a disposable camera for the event, there is a severe lack of photos in this post, so I apologise. And as soon as the photos are developed I will put them up on here.

Do have a look on the blog and come along to the next event:

Here are the things I got at the fair and the fantastic artists/crafters who made/designed them:

 From the top: Butterscotch & Beesting (Confectionery and Magic), postcard designed by Mike Hill, card designed by Stacie Swift, card designed by Clare Shields, postcard and stickers by Sophie Parker and the marvelous fox coaster I'm not sure of the name of the crafter, as they didn't put in a card, but I love it!

Happy crafting!

Saturday, 24 March 2012

90's Reunions and Rules of the Cinema

Last week I went to the good old Prince Charles cinema in London to see the awesome double bill of Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion aaaaand Grosse Point Blank. What more could I have asked for? Well apart from another Lord of the Rings Trilogy screening, nothing more!

I would also like to point out that I saw this poster in the cinema toilets on the wall, and now it is on my wall in my room, hehehe.

Both films were played on original film, none of this DVD nonsense, it was fantastic but Point Blank had a bit of a slow start and the music was a tad off throughout but I didn't care. Two of the best 90's films in the one of the best cinemas, was a great experience. And I will be back for more.

If you live in London or planning on visiting it, go to Prince Charles Cinema. There are more Double Bills, Classic Films, Special Screenings coming up this month so have a look on the website and book your tickets

Aside from this joyous occasion, I thought I would talk more about the laws of Cinema. Not what is on the screen but how people should behave in the cinema. Before you say/think 'oh god, she's going moan again', this is not me moaning, but observing. Then saying what should be happening.

1. In a crowded cinema, it is ok if you talk through the adverts, its annoying but ok. But if it is silence, go with the room and don't talk.
2. If you know its going to be a popular screening, sit in your given seat or you will frak it up for everyone else.
3. However if its empty, sit where you like. Only petty people complain about seating when its empty.
4. If someone is sitting by themselves, they have obviously wanted to see this film alone or on the spare of the moment. DON'T sit right next to them or in front of them like an arsehole. Especially if you're in a group!!! Its common sense! (I had to move three frickin times because people were rude)
5. Don't talk during the film, unless you're an amazing whisperer or you are far away from people.
6. Don't show up during adverts (it happens, mostly with teens) its lame and it annoys everyone else.
7. If you're going to check your phone every 5 minutes, sit at the back because the light from the phone blinds people behind you.
8. Obvious one, don't throw things. Its stupid. If you're bored, get the F**K out of the cinema.

Just a few friendly pointers. Happy Cineme going everyone!

Coming soon: Epic film reviews/discussions aaand The Hunger Games (its awesome by the way)

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Wes Anderson, I Love You!

With the news that Wes Anderson's new film, Moonrise Kingdom will be the opening film at this year's Cannes Film Festival, I thought I'd take a moment to tell everyone how much I love Wes Anderson and his marvelous films.

Bottle Rocket (1996), Rushmore (1998), The Royal Tenenbaums (2001), The Life Aquatic with Steve Zizzou (2004), The Darjeeling Limited (2007), Fantastic Mr Fox (2009) and Moonrise Kingdom (2012).

To summerise, Moonrise Kingdom is set in the 60's and centres around two twelve year olds who meet, fall in love and run away one summer. This prompts a local search party lead by the Sheriff and the girl's parents. The leads are obviously the two young actors by the cast has familiar faces (Bill Murray, Jason Schwartzman) and quite a few Anderson first timers such Bruce Willis, Edward Norton and Frances McDormand.

There is nothing like or anything that can be compared to a Wes Anderson film, they are unique. From the moment an idea is announced to minute it is released, I am, how do I say this, on it. I find out everything I can and get excited by the slightest news, so you can imagine my reaction when the trailer for Moonrise Kingdom was released. Here is the trailer for those who haven't seen it:

Wes Anderson's films are perfect, every detail is considered and everything fits into place. The music, the colour scheme, the opening titles (love the book covers), the cutaways of objects, I could go on, but I won't. When the film is released, which is May 25th for UK, I will see it on the first day and I bet a gleaming review will be posted on here within the day. In the meantime, watch the trailer and enjoy these stills from the film.

 If this is all a bit over the top, watch his films, visit and read 'Wes Anderson: Why His Movies Matter by Mark Browning, it will give you a little more insight to the filmmaker.

(Also, on a side note, for anybody from the UK, in the trailer, the bit where all the scouts are carrying weapons and are wearing army helmets with branches sticking out of them, did anyone else think classic sitcom Dad's Army? Just the closing credits part. Let me know.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

A Collection of Awesome Things

I found many awesome things on my travels around the internet (oh man, that sounds quite sappy) over the past few weeks and instead of writing a separate post for each thing, here they all are.

First: Since I've been watching the new NBC show Smash, I've been loving Angelica Huston. I've always loved her in Wes Anderson films and of course, in The Addams Family, but she is awesome as theatre producer Eileen Rand. There was also an article about in last month's Vanity Fair and it mentioned her modelling career so I just had to look her up and I found this amazing photograph:

Second: I love foxes and I saw this on someone's blog and thought it was ace!

Third: I was looking up tattoos (same search as above) and Moomins after I saw a waitress in a cafe's tattoo of Snufkin (fans will know who I mean, those who don't look it up here and I came across these two beauties, an amazing mural on the wall and a really cool cupcake design.

Fourth: I recently watched the most excellent documentary, The September Issue, which I was sceptical about at first but the story is intriguing. I wished it was longer or a series so I could see more of the goings on at Vogue. The Editor in Chief of Vogue, Anna Winters is cold and is the most unsympathetic person. The filmmakers try and gain sympathy for her when she talks about her siblings who think what she does for a living is 'amusing'. But just before that, she belittles what they do for a living with her tone and lack of information and care. Her daughter wants to be a lawyer, but she thinks its beneath her and keeps saying 'we'll see' when ever her daughter gets excited about law school. As soon as the cameras are away, the daughter keeps saying, with certainty, 'I do not want to work in fashion'.

The Creative Director, Grace, is an amazing talented woman, she has so many ideas and comes up with concepts for all but one of the photo shoots in the September issue which is the biggest and most important of the year. One her spreads was a 1920's theme which I loved, here are a couple of photos from it:

I tried my best to find the September issue they make in the film but its on ebay for $135, so I'll make do with these photos. Watch the film, The September Issue whether you like fashion or not. If you loved Ugly Betty, which I also love, you will enjoy this film.

Musical Bingo!

A few weeks back, my sister and I finally went to Drink Shop Do, the most amazing place, just round the corner from Kings Cross Station. As the name suggests you can have a look in their shop full of hand crafted goods, you can drink in their fabulous bar (the cocktails are amazing) and you can do or take part in the activities their. Our choice was Musical Bingo!

Just like regular Bingo but with music instead of numbers. We sat at our reserved table, which had mixed matching chairs, and drank our delicious cocktails (above). We also indulged in some cake, but unfortunately all but the brownie had nuts in it, but it was amazing. Then at 7:30, the menus changed, people all took their places, and our host, the awesome Jess Indeedy got the ball rolling. 

The first round was Motown Music, and seeing my sister is just very lucky, she won first prize (one full line). As we were sitting at the table furthest away from our host, it was going to be a very long way to run to her, as requested, to show her our bingo sheet. Jess Indeedy had appointed a guy sitting a nearer table to 'jump up and down' to get her attention if anyone in the back room won. This guy did just that, but didn't again. But anyway, my sister won some very tasty teacakes, which we enjoyed later with our second round of Bingotinis.

The second round was Soundtracks, my personal favourite. There were some songs that I just wanted to hear but alas I never got to hear them. My sister, being very lucky (I know I've said it) won again, this time full house. The last song she had to cross off was 'Mrs Robinson by Simon and Garfunkel' and as the song before it was playing I predicted she would win, and gently started pulling the table away so she had room to run. But the plan changed to, me jumping up and screaming, then making a mad dash through the bar to the host. We won a round of Bingotinis, which was perfect timing as we were craving another drink. Those Bingotinis were so good.

We weren't lucky in the third and fourth round, 80s and then Hip Hop. But we did have fun singing along to the songs. Then during the Hip Hop round, tiredness and the worry of missing last trains got the better of us, so we said good bye to the host and promised to return next month. And we will definitely be going next time!

Friday, 2 March 2012

The New Flavour of the Moment

I would have said pun intended but I'm not quite if it is . . . 

So it was Vampires, then some werewolves, and zombies too but the new crazy thing to have in a film or be about are . . .  cannibals. And it scares the s**t out of me.

I've done some research into this and it really freaked me out. This mostly, because all the other creatures are supernatural so aren't real, but cannibals are people. Also it reminds me of those awful scenes in The Road, it still haunts me. It still haunts others too. All I said to my friend the other day was 'cannibals' and 'The Road' and she freaked out too. So anyone reading this and is now thinking about those two things, sorry if you're freaked out, but do continue reading.

Still on the subject of cannibals, my curiosity got the better of me, when I saw the trailer and read about Mexican thriller/creepy film, 'We Are What We Are' (2010) which happens to be about a family of cannibals who are left to fend for themselves when the father, the provider, suddenly dies. I read the plot first to ease myself into it (and so I wouldn't get too freaked out) and then watched the very creepy trailer. All I am going to say is, the end is left open. It freaked me out. So here is the trailer for you all to enjoy.

It comes as no surprise that there is an 'english language' remake in the works.

The main reason for this post is to talk about new British film (release date unknown), Elfie Hopkins. The story is about Elfie, 22 year old slacker and wannabe detective who lives in a small town, described as a 'sleepy hunting village'. Everything is changed when a new family, The Gammons move into the village. They are strange and talk of adventures in faraway places, but then soon people start to go missing. Elfie and her nerdy friend Dylan start to investigate and try and uncover the truth.

I think you can guess where this is going as its no spoiler, its in the trailer. The Gammon family are cannibals. When I first read about the film, I got really excited even though I thought the family would turn out to be ghosts or vampires or something. But finding out the are cannibals makes me feel unsettled but I still kind of want to see the film. Its curiosity. Which may be a bad thing, because curiosity killed the cat, or in this case, ate it.

Now I've just freaked myself out again.

Here is a link to the trailer and an article about the film:

I know there is only a few examples here but I bet in the coming year, films/TV will have cannibals featured, just like how fairytale rewrites are happening now.