Film

Movie Ramblings: Lego Movie

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I’ve been thinking for a while now about what to write about this movie. I could talk about the fact that it is essentially a children’s movie but has a lot of things to keep adults interested, like nostalgic Lego sets and parodies of Batman. I could go on about how it essentially steals the plot of The Matrix and mixes it with aesthetic values from Adventure Time made out of Lego bricks. Then there’s the amazing effects design where every single thing you see on screen (allegedly) is created out of digital versions of actual Lego bricks. And the fact that I didn’t like the more smooth and glossy bits because they didn’t look like they were made out of bricks when they were.

But I realised that really all you need to know about this movie is… Continue reading

Film

Movie Ramblings: The Last Stand

The Last Stand is a weird combination of several different action genres. On the one hand you have a “serious” action film. By which I mean a film that takes itself seriously. There is a serious bad guy, a Mexican cartel boss who is intent on escaping federal custody and he doesn’t care how many people he has to kill to do it. On the other there is an odd kind of cross between Dad’s Army and Hot Fuzz. Arnold Schwarzenegger plays the “too old for this shit” sheriff of a backwater town in the second variety and is surrounded by gormless, bungling but ultimately likeable characters straight out of a straight up comedy like Super Troopers or Hot Fuzz.

Of course these two different worlds are set on a collision course by some kind of MacGuffin with dramatic and/or hilarious results. Continue reading

Film

Movie Ramblings: The Thing (2011)

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The 2011 version of The Thing is a prequel to the 1982 film The Thing which was itself a remake of 1951s The Thing from Another World. Confusing? not really if you just want to enjoy an action science fiction movie. Apparently, although this is a prequel and not a remake, a lot of attention has been paid to the 1982 version in terms of re-creating sets and scenery etc. As far as I know, no attention at all was paid to the 1951 version. If you haven’t seen it already, watch the 1982 version first even though it comes second chronologically. Continue reading

Holiday, Photography, Travel, Walking

Scotland Trip 2014 Part 3 – Boat of Garten

Following our visit to Edinburgh, we drove on up to Boat of Garten where we would be based for the rest of the week.

We spent the week hiking around lochs and castles, visited a distillery and generally enjoyed ourselves in the great outdoors. We were very lucky with the weather which remained warm (for the time of the year) and mostly dry for our trip. The following week once we were back home, the temperature had dropped from 13C to around freezing and some of the places we had been walking were cut off by flooding! Continue reading

Photography

Scotland Trip 2014 Part 2 – Edinburgh Royal Botanic Gardens

On our way out of Edinburgh we stopped at the Royal Botanic Gardens. Although it was getting late in the year, there were still plenty of interesting and pretty plants to see here. Also, as it was Saturday, both the garden entry and the on street parking were free. This meant that we had cash to spare to eat in the good but rather pricey restaurant in the gardens before continuing on our journey. Continue reading

Holiday, Photography, Travel, Walking

Scotland Trip 2014 Part 1 – Edinburgh

The bedroom in the Highfield Hotel
The bedroom in the Highfield Hotel

Our 2014 trip to Scotland began with an overnight stop in Durham. We stayed at the Highfield Hotel. Due to some car problems, we were so tired

that we didn’t actually leave the hotel. Fortunately there was a Thai restaurant and a pub in the hotel so we didn’t need to go anywhere for a drink and a meal. The food was really good and the staff were very friendly. Continue reading

Film

Movie Ramblings: Tomie Unlimited

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Warning: spoilers and Japanese style weirdness…

Some horror films take a while to get going and this one drags a bit for the first few seconds and then is straight into the action. Before half an hour is up the main character has died, come back to life, done some reasonably twisted things and died and come back again. What the hell is the remaining hour going to be about I wondered. I was still wondering exactly the same thing 60 minutes later.

Continue reading