Monday, 27 April 2015

Music Monday: Music I've Been Loving #2.

Hey everyone, so I thought I'd do another post on music I've been really getting into recently and becoming obsessed with. Some of the artists you'll probably know and some you may not know so I'll explain to you who they are and what songs I think you should check out!

Ludovico Einaudi
Ludovico Einaudi is an Italian composer and pianist. My taste in music is very varied; it goes from Shania Twain to Green Day to Kanye West to Ludovico Einaudi. He produces wonderful classical music that is so relaxing to listen to. Fairytale and Nuvole Bianche are just two of my favourites by him. But I'd recommend pretty much YouTubing all of his music, it's pretty spectacular.

The Weeknd
The Weeknd AKA Abel Tesfaye is one of my new favourites and I don't often have favourites in the RnB/HipHop genre. I discovered The Weeknd through his song Earned It on the soundtrack of the Fifty Shades of Grey film and I became obsessed with it. I explored his music a bit more and became obsessed with his cover of BeyoncĂ©'s song Drunk In Love (warning: which is alot more graphic lyrically than BeyoncĂ©'s original!). He's progressing rather well within his career having shared the stage with Kanye West in this year's festival Coachella and he's had Drake perform on a few of his songs too.    

Patsy Cline
Bit of a huge throwback here but ever since I've heard this song on the television series Fargo, I have fallen in love with it. I love quite old songs and Patsy Cline was one of the best back in 60's. She was one of the most successful and best singers of the 20th Century and this proves why.

What are some of your favourite songs at the moment?
Are there any albums you're looking forward to listening to?

If you have any comments or recommendations for me, please let me know!

Thankyou for reading.

Friday, 24 April 2015

Film Review: The Avengers - Age of Ultron (2015).

This is probably one of the film reviews I've been so excited to post all year since I am such a Marvel fan. Hopefully you enjoy reading this and love the film too!
So I saw this film the day it came out (23rd of April) and absolutely loved it. It was full of action, heart racing moments and good old superhero goodness.

The Background
The Avengers: Age of Ultron is the sequel to 2012's The Avengers and it was directed and written by Joss Whedon once again. It features an ensemble cast that includes Robert Downey Jr (Tony Stark/Ironman), Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Mark Ruffalo (Bruce Banner/The Hulk), Chris Evans (Steve Rogers/Captain America), Scarlett Johansson (Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow), Jeremy Renner (Clint Barton/Hawkeye) and two new characters, brother and sister; Pietro Maximoff/Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen). Also James Spader voiced Ultron and Paul Bettany who voices Stark's A.I. companion J.A.R.V.I.S also voiced The Vision. 

In this, they team up together to defeat Ultron who is technological enemy that Stark and Banner accidentally create after finding an artificial intelligence located within Loki's scepter from the first film. They use it to try and create Stark's 'Ultron' global defense program which inevitably goes wrong as Ultron gains self-control and is hell-bent on bringing "peace" to Earth by ridding it of all human life.

My Thoughts
This was indescribable! It literally kicks off and doesn't hold off introducing the avengers all at once as they battle in a forest against a terrorist group that is affiliated with Hydra who were discovered in Captain America 2. It is a spectacular introduction and you're instantly on the edge of your seat.

Whedon yet again indulges us in a good old fashioned superhero film and saturates it with subplots, cameos, character conflicts and the cramming of each character's own individual storyline. This goes swimmingly for Whedon as he writes and directs this so well that for two and half hours you're back and forth between characters while also centring on Ultron's plan of destruction but also getting to know two new characters. It doesn't fall apart at all and seems to be all glued together by the avengers' chemistry and tension with each other.

Speaking of the two new characters, we had a glimpse of the orphans Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver in last year's X-Men: Days of Future Past but in this film they really shine - especially Olsen. They're brother and sister and become sidekicks for Ultron. Quicksilver uses super speed to quite literally pull the carpet from under the avengers' feet and Scarlet Witch uses her mind control abilities to mess with the avengers' heads which is how Stark comes to his plan of building Ultron as she shows him an illusion of a possible future where he betrays all of his friends and destroys them.

Of course I have a few criticisms but they're only small and easily surpassed by the thrilling action and subplots. There are few cheesy moments which drag out a few scenes unnecessarily especially between Black Widow and Bruce Banner as a surprising romance springs up between them which I am very unsure about. It did change my mind a little because I've never really been a fan of Scarlett's acting but she was better in this one and you see more into Black Widow's story. Also I didn't really like how quick they built and introduced Ultron because it didn't really stretch out enough tension, it just felt a little bit rushed. However Spader really induces fear as Ultron and plays him well. 

However the rest of the film surpasses all of this as it was action packed and absolutely fantastic. We even got to see more of Clint/Hawkeye's character development and we found out more of his background which blew us all away in the cinema. It was a nice touch as he was mind controlled for most of the first film although he proved important in the fight. Another character I've been impressed with is Captain America. His character development has been very significant, he is central to the team and really keeps up the morale despite all of the criticisms from his own solo films especially the first one.

It all seems a bit chaotic and mad but it systemically works well and the final confrontation seems a little familiar to the first one but Whedon writes it well and has you gasping and cheering right to the end.


Have you seen it? What did you think?
Thankyou for reading.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Film Review: Cinderella (2015).

Hi everyone, I am so sorry for being absent on here for literally an entire month but I've had lot on due to my health and I had to have an operation which I'm still recovering from but I have a film review for you today!

I went along to see Cinderella because I love Disney so much and the 1950 cartoon version was lovely and beautifully animated. I'll give you the background like I usually do and then give you my thoughts about the film.

The Background
2015 Cinderella is a romantic fantasy film from a screeplay written by Chris Weitz. Directed by Kenneth Branagh, the film stars Lily James as the beautiful Ella ('Cinderella'), Cate Blanchett as the Wicked Stepmother, Richard Madden as Prince Charming, Sophie McShera as Drisella, Holliday Grainger as Anastasia and Helena Bonham Carter as the Fairy Godmother. The films follows and uses many of the same elements from Walt Disney's 1950 animated film of the same name but with a few differences.

Ella, as a young child, lives with her parents in a beautiful house in a quiet kingdom and from a young age she is taught by her mother to believe in magic, fairy godmothers and to be courageous and kind. Through this she is able to befriend animals on the estate, mainly the mice and become kind and caring. However the tranquillity is broken one day when her mother tragically dies and her father, years later, marries Lady Tremaine (Blanchett) who brings along her two daughters who are unpleasant to Ella despite her determination to remain polite and welcoming.

Tragedy strikes again and Ella's father dies while travelling and Ella is left to become a slave for her stepmother and her two daughters. One day, upon meeting Ella in the forest, Prince Charming sends out invitations to everyone to the kingdom to meet her again. When Lady Tremaine and her daughters force Ella to stay at home, she seeks the help from her Fairy Godmother who helps her go to the ball to meet her destiny.

My Thoughts
I absolutely loved the film although it was a little cheesy and twee at times but I quickly remembered it was pretty much a child's film. It left me nostalgic for my own childhood and it completely re-invented how I always saw Cinderella. Lily James was very beautiful and probably perfect to be Cinderella but her acting was a little airy and fairy sometimes however she completely changed my mind at the end when she stood up to the Wicked Stepmother and got her well-deserved happy ending. 

I was pleasantly surprised to see Cate Blanchett take on the role of the Wicked Stepmother as I had absolutely no idea who was going to be her. She absolutely shone in her role and really made you believe she was completely vile and wicked. Her costumes throughout the film were absolutely stunning and I really wanted to be wearing them myself! The stepsisters added a nice comedic element though-out the film also.

Helena Bonham Carter is one of my favourite actresses of all time and she was exquisite and dazzling as the Fairy Godmother like I knew she would be. She narrated the film throughout and made the transforming scene hilarious but magical and magnificent. 

The film's visual effects and costume design were definitely Oscar worthy because I could not take my eyes off Blanchett's dresses and Cinderella's dress was a dazzling blue that sparkled throughout Lily's scenes. Kenneth Branagh, as the director, completely transformed Cinderella and proved that Disney has not lost any of its magic.

Have you seen this film? What did you think of it?
Thankyou for reading.