Fictitious Emotions

I’m back, and a lot sooner than I was expecting. Things are looking up!

So, due to being unemployed and having very little to do, I have either been gaming (something I hadn’t done for a year so I have to make up for lost time, right..?), or watching films/TV series.

Yesterday (obviously this time will change depending on when you read this), I finished my old TV Series (Daredevil – came highly recommended, ended up being slightly disappointed), and moved onto my new TV Series: Broadchurch.

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Broadchurch, starring David Tennant (yes, this is what influenced me to watch it) and Olivia Colman, not to mention numerous other people of note (including Rory from Doctor Who! Though, he’d probably prefer to be known by his real name, Arthur Darvill), is a crime/drama/mystery set in the small coastal town of Broadchurch (Dorset, England), where a young boy of eleven is found murdered.

There are three main reasons I can think of for why I am enjoying it thus far (I am two episodes in as of this post). The first being David Tennant. Because Scotland… and Doctor Who. The second reason is that the Dorset accent (or the West Country accent) is one of the most joyful accents one will ever hear. In fact, I have looked up West Country specific phrases just for you guys (and for myself):

“Gurt” means “big” or “very”

“Spuddling” means “to cause trouble” or “to bicker”

“G’woam” means “going home”

I think I need to start using G’woam more.

Either way (getting off track. Nothing has changed in the past year (…on my Gap Yah. I HAD TO, I’M SORRY)), the third reason I am enjoying Broadchurch is that it is tense and full of mystery. And actually emotional, which is the main reason for this post actually. First episode I felt myself welling up. This has happened very rarely to me in regards to TV/films.

Though I hate to bring it up (complete lie) Lord of the Rings always gets me. When Boromir dies with defending Merry and Pippin? Yeah, sacrifice doesn’t get greater than that. But I have never cried. Tears have never been shed for a fictitious person.

My sister, on the other hand, cries probably more at fictional characters than in real life circumstances. Something I have never understood. In fact, I believe she owns a t-shirt that says “Leave me alone so I can cry over the deaths of fictional characters” (which is where the picture header came from). This pretty much sums up the difference between me and my sister. That and the fact she’s the academic one, I’m the sociable one, and many other things but yeah… emotions are one of the differences.

The only time I have come close to crying over a fictional character was when I was about twelve. I went to go see the film Bridge to Terabithia at the cinema.

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I don’t know what it was, but that shit was heart-wrenching. Yet re-watching it, I felt none of the same pangs. I mean, I still realised it was upsetting (my sister cried… again), but I didn’t feel any need to well up. Perhaps I am influenced more by shock than anything.

Game of Thrones Spoilers ahead. Stop reading here if you haven’t seen Season Five.

Also: rant ahead. Sorry.

Actually, as an after-note, let us discuss Game of Thrones.

Filthily riddled with death and surprising moments, it has caused many generations of the past few years to watch the show with a mixture of fear, hate, love and adrenaline. Then season five happened, and Jon Snow is apparently dead.

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Now, I am a book reader. I watched the first season, then read all the books before the second season came out (still waiting for Winds of Winter Mr. Martin, just saying). So I knew the majority of deaths were going to happen. Including Jon Snow. And his “death” has led to WAY TOO MANY RUMOURS AND PEOPLE ANALYSING EVERY SINGLE LITTLE THING THAT THE PRODUCERS/CAST SAY AND IT IS DRIVING ME INSANE. Seriously, these “Kit Watches”, as I believe they are being called are getting ridiculous. “Oh look, he still hasn’t cut his hair.” “Oh my God, he’s going to Iceland. He’s still in the show!”

WHO CARES. Yes, he is one of my favourite characters, and yes, Kit Harington is attractive, but please stop. Just watch for the next season. Now let’s watch some goddamn TV.

IN PEACE.

Game of Thrones: Then and Now

I begin this post with a grievous tale, one which I’m sure will tear at the very foundations of your full-sized aortic pumps:

I have finally finished the Game of Thrones books. Why is this saddening? Because it means my life is devoid of GoT until at least 2015. The next book (The Winds of Winter) has no alleged release date, with Martin’s publisher stating that the book would “certainly not be published before 2015”. Furthermore the TV Show has just finished its fourth series and the fifth series is unlikely to air until mid 2015.

So, in order to maintain some order in my life before I am driven crazy by this black hole that can only be filled by complicated names, excessive violence and raunchy sex scenes, I thought it would be fun to have a look at what GoT stars were doing before they became the characters that we know and love (and sometimes hate).

Let us start with one of the Starks. Obviously you have Ned Stark, played by the notorious Sean Bean, who needs no introduction except via the word “bastards” or the phrase “One does not simply walk into Mordor“:

However, other relatively less well known actors from the series have had some surprising roles in films in the past.

Take Mark Addy for example, who plays Robert Baratheon in GoT. Did you know that it is highly likely that you have seen him giving you a striptease? Yep, Robert Baratheon was in the Full Monty:

Don’t worry, I am just as scarred as you are.

Next, comes Rory McCann, who plays the strangely lovable Hound in the series. If you are British, then it is almost sinful if you have not seen Hot Fuzz, the second Simon Pegg/Nick Frost comedy duo film. But who does he play in it? None other than the one word giant, Michael Armstrong (or Lurch? I think Frost calls him that at some point):

N’aww, that adorable giggle… “Yarp”.

Any of you remember the comedy Shanghai Knights from 2003 starring Owen Wilson and Jackie Chan? Remember the bad guy in it, Rathbone? Who was a rather unctuous bad-ass? He was played by Aidan Gillen, better known as Peter Baelish, or ‘Littlefinger’.

Some actors never lose their sliminess.

Finally two, then I’ll leave you to re-watch all of Game of Thrones and go “ha, it actually is him!”. Firstly, we have Nikolaj Coster-Waldau who plays the controversial Jaime Lannister, who everyone has a love/hate relationship with. What most people don’t know, is that he featured in Ridley Scott’s Black Hawk Down, back in 2001, as a selfless sniper who sacrifices himself to save a fellow American, despite the fact that Coster-Waldau is, in fact, from Denmark (oh… spoilers I suppose):

I don’t actually think he has any lines in this film…

Finally, we arrive at the one which every single Game of Thrones fan should know. Cast your mind back to Batman Begins, the first in the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy. Now, think of Joffrey Baratheon, the boy King who you just have to hate. He is played by Jack Gleeson, who most people seem to hate because of his role as Joffrey. Well, you’ll be pleased to know that he wasn’t always a spoilt brat with a fixation on pain and suffering; he played the innocent little blonde-haired boy who idolises Batman:

One day you’ll become a murdering psychopath… But not for at least six years.

 

And there you go! There are more, I’m sure, but these are my favourite actor transitions. Just a few other quick notes: actress who played Osha the Wildling was in Harry Potter; Samwell Tarly was a guest star in an episode of Merlin; Gendry played Chris in the British TV Show Skins; and Peter Dinklage is… Well, Peter Dinklage. Enough said.

One more thing: Lovable, dimwitted Hodor? Yeah, he’s a DJ. Don’t believe me? Here:

The MTV Movie Awards… Hmm

Another year and another crazy amount of films. Some great, some mediocre and some just not worth mentioning.

Yet the MTV Movie Awards always manages to conjure up some of the oddest awards possible.

If I’m brutally honest, I think most Movie Awards are just a popularity contest. Take for example, when Jennifer Lawrence won Best supporting actress in a motion picture, over Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave). I’m going to be honest, I don’t think Lawrence’s performance in American Hustle was that impressive. Sure, it was enjoyable, but there was no way it could compete with Nyong’o’s. Don’t get me wrong I absolutely adore Jennifer Lawrence – she’s one of my biggest female crushes – I just don’t think she fully deserved the award. That’s why I was glad when Lupita Nyong’o won the Oscar instead of her.

Moving back to the MTV Movie Awards, did best villain really go to Mila Kunis for her performance in Oz The Great and Powerful? I thought it was a poorly constructed film with just weird evil character. She even beat Barkhad Abdi from Captain Phillips (which in fairness I haven’t seen, but everyone I’ve spoken to have said he portrayed his character sublimely). And Benedict Cumberbatch in Star Trek: Into Darkness… Asdghjkl, that performance made my imaginary man-ovaries twinge.

And then you have Best Cameo Performance. Not gonna lie, I quite enjoy cameos. See, in my opinion, this award should’ve gone to Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, solely because it has cameos from absolutely everybody. Instead, it went to Rihanna for her angry cameo in This is the End, where she gets hit on by Michael Cera. Yes, it was funny, but nowhere near as entertaining as the truly epic war between all the different News Stations in Anchorman. Poor call.

Last, but certainly not least, was Best Shirtless Performance. The five nominees were: Leonardo DiCaprio (Wolf of Wall Street), Sam Claflin (Hunger Games: Catching Fire), Chris Hemsworth (Thor: The Dark World), Jennifer Aniston (We’re the Millers), and Zac Efron (That Awkward Moment).
Needless to say, Jennifer Aniston didn’t win. As it turns out, these MTV Movie Awards are ruled by hormonally-crazed women. The award went to Zac Efron. Okay, I’m going to be brutally honest again… his body does resemble that of a Greek God’s. So yeah, I’ll give them that. However, feeling the need to strip off during your speech? That’s just a bit far. Sure, Rita Ora gave him a helping hand by ripping his shirt open, but did he then have to take it completely off, flex his muscles, then salute? Oh wait, he actually did a double salute… is that even a thing?
Also worth noting: Will Poulter! I think he’s an utter comedic genius. He won Breakthrough Performance for his role in We’re the Millers. I first saw him in School of Comedy, which is just kids pretending to be adults in a very crude manner… It’s quite entertaining though! However, he was also in Son of Rambow and Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader (actually, as I’d read the books, I knew about the character Eustace and as soon as I heard about the film I said to myself “You know who would be great as that role? Will Poulter. And guess what? He was. Thank you thank you, bow down to my superiority), so I don’t entirely understand the Breakthrough Performance bit… Any help guys?
Well that roughly sums up my thoughts about Movie Awards in a just manner. What do you guys think? Do you feel as if they’re all a big sham and are basically a popularity contest? Or do you feel there is something more to them?Image
There, for all you massive Efron fans. ENJOY.

Top 10 Celebrity Crushes

For the sake of equality, this list consists of both male and female celebrities.

All the celebrities (come to think of it, they’re all actors and actresses…) on this list have been chosen because

1. I think they’re good actors and

2. I think they’re rather attractive… In a completely heterosexual way of course.

I shall also attempt to list them in films/TV shows that I’ve seen them in!

So, it begins, in no particular order:

1. Milo Ventimiglia (Heroes, Kiss of the Damned, Dirty Deeds)

2. Juno Temple (St. Trinians, Year One, The Dark Knight Rises)

3. Viggo Mortensen (Lord of the Rings, Appaloosa, A History of Violence)

4. Katie McGrath (Merlin, Dracula)

5. Harry Lloyd (Robin Hood, Game of Thrones, The Fear)

6. Jennifer Lawrence (Hunger Games, American Hustle, Winter’s Bone)

7. Daniel Feuerriegel (Starz: Spartacus)

8. Alexis Bledel (Sin City)

9. Ewan McGregor (Star Wars, The Island, Deception)

10. Ellen Hollman (Starz: Spartacus)

A Day to Eclipse All Others…

I feel like my day should be shared with everyone. Or more, the two things I witnessed today should be shared.

I went shopping, which was fairly uneventful – apart from buying a pair of very expensive jeans and getting lost trying to find shops – and then came back to watch a film with my friend.

We had both had a burning yearning (not often I say that) to watch this film. I actually am rather ashamed to say that. We had found the trailer on YouTube and were half-skeptical, half-mesmerised by the look of it. I refer to the film that can only be described as… well, kinda stupid. All Superheroes Must Die.

If you haven’t seen it, picture a parody of Kick-ass. By all means, that should sound decent, until you realise that Kick-ass is, in itself, a parody of all other superhero films… But then you have this film.

Someone has it in for four superheroes. With no back-story, nor any reasoning for anything behind it, you are just left thinking: was this meant to be a serious film?

We watched the introduction from the producer/director/actor, who said that they only filmed it in 2 months. When you take that into account… No, it doesn’t change anything. It was just a terrible film. Still, I don’t regret watching it at all. It was funny. Only problem was it wasn’t meant to be funny…

So after my friend left (in a state of complete bewilderment and shock) I settled down with the intention of avoiding films for at least a week. However, I quickly found a copy of Sharknado online and just had to watch it…

Its most redeeming feature is that it was, in fact, better than All Superheroes Must Die. Despite the vacant logic and truly gigantic plot holes, it wasn’t actually too painful. Just a bit weird… And stupid… But it did have Vicky from American Pie in it (who sadly hasn’t aged well). The dialogue was considerably better in this film than the previous one, as well as the slightly more believable… Okay, no, who am I kidding: Tornadoes with sharks in them? That’s possibly less believable than superheroes.

So really, my day has been filled with terribly stressful shopping, terrible dialogue, terrible storylines, terrible CGI and just overall terrible-ness. Great job Hollywood – we truly love you (part of me actually means that… atrocious films are quite enjoyable, in the sense that you can laugh your head off at the logic behind them).

I implore everyone to watch both these films. I guarantee you’ll love them… kind of… not really. GOOD LUCK.

Why the Changes, PJ?

Peter Jackson changed many things for his film versions of the Lord of the Rings. He cut out some seemingly vital characters (the replacement of Radagast with a moth has always seemed hilarious to me), made small changes to the journeys the remaining characters went on, and, the purpose of this post, changed the attributes and personality of some characters. That’s not to say I don’t like the movies – heck, I love them! Yet when it comes to the characters, there are a few that I can’t help but find rather annoying.

The main one being Frodo. Now, I know that he has this great burden to carry, yet he could try and do so without so much complaining. If it weren’t for Sam, Frodo would’ve just collapsed and given up in the very first film. In the book however, Frodo is cast in a completely different light. he is cool, calm, and collected. Exactly how a hero should be. I’m not faulting Elijah Wood’s portrayal of Frodo – I think he did a fantastic job, yet I don’t like how pathetically he is interpreted by Peter Jackson.

Now, this one is more of me being picky, as I quite like the portrayals of the character in both the books and films. The character of Faramir, played by the fantastic David Wenham, is not nearly as collected as he is in the books. Obviously, his relationship with his father before and after his brother’s death make a whole new storyline appear which is only briefly touched upon in the books, which in turn, creates more drama and so on. But Faramir was one of my favourite characters in the book. I could only think of one word to describe him when reading it: suave. In the film I liked him a lot, just you couldn’t call him suave in that. Noble would be a better way to describe him during the films (and his father, Denethor, is played by a man called Jon Noble).

Now for the Hobbit. I’ll stick with one major change, ignoring the blatant one of making it a Trilogy instead of just one film, which it could’ve easily been.

What really peeved me off about Jackson’s choice here, is that he decided to bring Azog in as the big bad guy. I was really rather annoyed about this when I first found out. Azog is meant to be dead before the Hobbit begins. Not even in the way that Thorin believes he is: he’s meant to have been killed by Dain, after Azog took Moria and beheaded Thror. I know that by making him the arch-nemesis of Thorin it makes the story in the film more sinister, yet why couldn’t you just have stuck with Bolg as the bad guy? He had just as much reason to hate the dwarves, and he isn’t even dead. Bolg appeared in the films, much to my confusion and annoyance, as one of Azog’s servants who is sent to hunt down Thorin whilst Azog mustered the orc-army for the Necromancer (or Sauron, if you wish). going off the Azog subject, I don’t mind the whole Necromancer storyline really. As Jackson had already decided to make three films, he might as well try and tie it into the Lord of the Rings. But Azog. I’m sorry, but no. There was no need. He doesn’t even mention that Azog and Bolg are father and son. Incidentally, does anyone actually know how orcs have children? I’ve always been slightly disconcerted by that…

After seeing the first Hobbit film once, I decided that if I go see it again (which I did, multiple times), I would try to completely forget about the book whilst watching it, and just try to embrace the storyline as something new and exciting. I actually ended up enjoying it a lot more this way, as well as the second film (also seen multiple times). So that’s my advice to anyone who feels the same as me: try and neglect the book when you watch the Hobbit. Lord of the Rings is manageable with the books in mind, but the Hobbit is not.

I sound really against Peter Jackson, don’t I? I’m not, I promise. I probably prefer the films to the books actually (well, not the Hobbit…). I just don’t class the Hobbit films as anything to do with Tolkien. There, those are my views. Deal with them. Please?

 

Dramatic Suspense (Opposed to the other type of suspense..?)

Don’t you hate, yet love cliffhangers?
Despite the fact that cliffhangers are the key to any great thriller (be it an action thriller or a thriller thriller or whatever), you can’t help but scream “OH COME ON” at your tv screen each time an episode ends with “To be continued…”.
Even in books it’s bad enough when a chapter ends leaving you on the edge of your seat (Bed? Bath? …Train?). However, the perks of reading a book are that you can immediately move onto the next chapter. With a TV Programme though, you have to wait a WHOLE. ‘NOTHER. WEEK.
I feel like I’m being a bit negative and pessimistic here… I absolutely love suspense. Even if it kills me, it’s a truly fantastic feeling.

And there you go, there are my thoughts on my love/hate relationship with tension.