Tuesday Track – Dawn Landes

I first heard this track when it was used on a Harry Potter documentary (look, I’m a nerd, ok?). It’s a bittersweet song that invokes the nostalgic in me.

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Film Review: Guardians of the Galaxy

As aforementioned, I do love a good comic book/superhero movie. Like most of the audience, I knew virtually nothing about Guardians of the Galaxy going into the cinema and I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who then came out of the cinema totally besotted with them all.

Guardians of the Galaxy starts with an unusually emotive opening gambit: our central character Peter Quill is still just a boy, and whose mother is dying. As he runs from the hospital, grief-stricken, he is quite literally beamed up into a space ship hovering above him. The next time we meet him, he has grown up to become an acclimatised spaceman and a criminal. He lands on an abandoned planet to steal a strange orb and judging by the crew that comes to stop him and take it for themselves (led by the criminally undervalued Djimon Hounsou); this is one super important orb.

We learn that scary, deep voiced badass no. one, Ronan (a truly terrifying Lee Pace), a dictator who wants to wipe out several other races of people, is working with scary deep-voiced badass no. two: Thanos (Josh Brolin). Thanos and Ronan have a deal to help each other destroy all their enemies and need that orb to help them accomplish all the blowing up and massacring they’re so keen to get on with. As a gesture of good will, Thanos sends his ‘daughters’ to help Ronan: the robotic Nebula (an extremely cool looking Karen Gillam) and super-assassin Gamora (Zoe Saldana, who still manages to be luminously beautiful even when painted pea green). Gamora intercepts Quill (the lovely, awesomesauce Chris Pratt), who is selling the orb for his own gain, but her attempt to kill him is foiled by a sociopathic weapons genius who also happens to be a genetically modified raccoon, Rocket (Bradley Cooper, voice) and humanoid tree and ‘the muscle’, Groot (Vin Diesel, voice). Rocket and Groot turn out to be bounty hunters after Quill and all four end up in the Kyln, a floating space prison, owned by Nova Corps, some sort of nice space people/police.

Still following?

To cut a long and convoluted plot short, Quill, Gamora, Rocket and Groot, along with hard headed, revenge seeking Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista) band together to break out of prison, sell the orb, get some money and hopefully escape whatever appalling plan Ronan has in store. Naturally, things don’t go to plan…at all.

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Throwback Thursday: Pop Arts Revisits…Legally Blonde!

Hello! Happy Thursday to everyone. For those of us in the UK, the weather has taken a steep and swift turn towards the autumnal, despite it being August, with our last Bank Holiday weekend approaching. Sigh.

Due to summer busy-ness, we’ve skipped a fair few Thursdays, but I can’t think of a better way to restart than with the gloriousness that is Legally Blonde.

Legally Blonde is often pigeon-holed and dismissed as a chick flick, which infuriates me. Am I a girl? Yes. Do I like girly, overtly feminine things? Yes. Do I like watching films about romance and love and puppies and shit? Dear God, YES. Do I like the term ‘Chick Flick’? Hell no. ‘Chick Flick’ is patronising on all sorts of levels. Clearly, it donates a film that is apparently for women, but more specifically than that, a ‘chick’. I feel like I get dumber by association any time someone refers to me as a chick, y’know? Added to which, ‘chick flick’ doesn’t even get the honour of being called a film, it’s a ‘flick’ – a throwaway, silly thing.

On the surface, I suppose Legally Blonde does seem throwaway and silly. Blonde, pink obsessed, California sorority girl goes to Harvard Law School with the sole intention of convincing her ex-boyfriend to marry her. Simple, right? Except that it is so much more than that and totally blows away any nonsense terms like ‘chick flick’.

(Please note: the discussion below presumes you’ve seen Legally Blonde. Which of course you have. RIGHT?)

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Book Review: I Don’t Know What You Know Me From (Confessions of a Co-Star) by Judy Greer

Essay collections seem to be becoming popular again, especially amongst high profile women. I Don’t Know What You Know Me From was my third such collection, following Tiny Fey’s Bossypants and Mindy Kaling’s Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

I Don’t Know What You Know Me From (Confessions of a Co-Star) is by Judy Greer, an immensely prolific actress, who will be familiar to most people who own a TV set. I picked this up because I do know what I know Greer from, having seen/owned enough films she has appeared in to legitimately start a Judy Greer collection. Greer is known for being a smart comedy actress and for playing a multitude of best friends in various romantic comedies. I like her a lot as an actor (seeing her name on a cast list usually means a plus for me when it comes to choosing films) and I think it would be fair to say that those best friend roles are usually far more interesting than our leading lady. I Don’t Know… is both a sort of memoir and essay collection, taking us from Greer’s childhood through to her move to Hollywood and subsequent acting career.

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July/August Round Up

Hello all! Sorry it’s been so quiet around here lately – July and August have been mega busy with work/life stuff.

Below is a list of I have watched/read/enjoyed over the last two months that won’t get individual spots on the blog. Hope you’re all having a great summer!

Where I should be right now

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Book Review: Never Have I Ever – My Life (So Far) Without A Date by Katie Heaney

Beware, guys – I’m about to gush. I’ve been gushing in person to everyone I know about Never Have I Ever and I’m about to do it to you, so brace yourselves.

Never Have I Ever is a memoir of sorts from Buzzfeed writer Katie Heaney. Heaney completely sold herself to me as a writer through this book. In Never Have I Ever, Heaney writes of her romantic escapades from primary school to her post-graduate degree…except that we know from the start that none of them will amount to anything. Heaney has never had a boyfriend. Ever. Nor has she had any kind of significant, ongoing romantic relationship. Heaney aims to document this rather unusual aspect of her life while examining why it might be.

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Top 10 Tuesday – Link up with The Broke and Bookish

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Top 10 books I’m not sure I want to read…

 

The Fault in our Stars

I’m just not a fan of books that I know will make me cry before I start reading.

Game of Thrones

Everyone wants me to read this series of books but…I’m just not interested. Fantasy/depressing family drama are not really my bag.

The Thirteenth Tale

My friend has been on at me to read this for ages and ages but it sounds super scary and weird. I don’t want to!

50 Shades of Grey

Um….not sure I need to bother explaining this one.

E.M Forster novels

I tried. I really did. But I just can’t get with Forster’s style. I feel bad as he’s so well regarded, but…nope.

Lord of the Rings

So long! And like GoT, I couldn’t take all the extra, fantasiest bits of the book that they (purposefully) left out of the movies.

Mills and Boon

Not big into romance and I have way too many memories of seeing copies at my Grandma’s house…

Jeffery Eugenides

Like E M Forster, I tried but I just couldn’t get into his books.

Gone Girl

Not even remotely interested. Sorry!

The Shining

TOO SCARY.

 

What books are you just not feeling?

Top 10 Tuesday – Link up with the Broke and Bookish

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Top Ten Books I’d Give To Readers Who Have Never Read…a ‘classic’

This week’s challenge is looking at how to introduce a fellow reader to a new genre of books. I’m not much of a genre reader (I tend to just pick up whatever I fancy) but as a former literature student, I’ve read a LOT of classics in my time and thought I would put together a beginner’s guide:

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

While Pride and Prejudice is the more famous story, I think Northanger Abbey is more accessible. It’s short, funny and irreverent and a great intro into the Austen world.

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Full of memorable characters, with a more straightforward plot than some of Dickens’ mighter tomes, Great Expectations is well-told, funny and full of classic Dickensian storytelling.

Jeeves & Wooster by P.G.Wodehouse

Always funny, always smart and an amazing depiction of the British aristocracy. Wodehouse always makes me laugh.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Arguably one of the most famous American classics, with a very well known plot. Read this and you’ll understand so many references!

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

I summed up why I love it here but again, a gentle, relatable way into 1800s writing.

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

I love Steinbeck’s writing. Of Mice and Men is short (again) and the most easily accessible of Steinbeck’s work.

Dracula by Bram Stoker

A great introduction to both Victorian morals and manners and gothic horror!

Alice’s Adventure’s in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Bonkers children’s story that influenced so much after it.

Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery

Who wouldn’t want to read about a red-headed Canadian orphan?

Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame

A little glimpse into English manners through Mole, Ratty and Toad of Toad Hall.