Thursday, 16 November 2017

Thor: Ragnarok | Film Review

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Hey Guys x

I am a huge superhero movie fan, but in particular, a huge Marvel fan. So of course when this film came out I was so excited to see it. Other then the trailer, I was going in blind. I haven't read the comic books, so I didn't know what 'Ragnarok' meant and was just expecting to see a slightly better than average film that could complete the 'Thor' trilogy and then leave it alone.

Boy was I wrong!

In the last Thor film, we saw Loki pretending to be his father Odin. So when we return to Asgard in this film, that's what we come back to - Asgard as run by Loki. Of course, this doesn't last long! But then the real threat makes itself known. Hela, the goddess of death, has come to destroy Asgard. But to defeat her, Thor must find a way off of a new planet (Sakaar), and put together a team of people that will be able to destroy Hela for good.

To be honest, for how good this film is, that's a really bad explanation. Trust me, if I could just write out the jokes of the film I completely would!

Because that's what sets this film apart from literally every other film in the MCU. Excuse my language, but it's fucking funny. It's so funny there wasn't a moment while watching it that I didn't have a smile on my face. And this is completely thanks to the director Taika Waititi. He came completely fresh to the franchise with a completely different take, and it really really worked. If you watch him in interviews, you can see how funny he is just by himself, so putting that into a Marvel film was a genius idea that definitely paid off.

I loved seeing the characters from the MCU that I didn't get to see in Civil War, as that meant that I hadn't seen them on screen since 2015 (or 2013 in the case of Loki), but they were definitely worth the wait!

I never thought these characters would be able to be as funny as they were. The combination of Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and Loki (Tom Hiddleston), and then Thor and Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), was perfect. And that's before we even begin to think about the new characters. The Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum) and Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) both really added to the humour of the film and made it a really enjoyable watch. However, the standout character in terms of comedy was, for sure, Korg (played by Taika himself) - he's made of rocks, and has the softest, sweetest juxtaposing voice on the planet (of Asgard)!

And then there's the villian! For me, the comedy was the thing that made me love it, rather than the story with Hela. However, Cate Blanchett did an amazing job portraying this woman, and it was so nice to see, for once, a female villain that was so badass and ruthless. I loved it.

There was a scene in the film, near the end, on the bridge, where Led Zeppelin's 'Immigrant Song' was playing, and everything came together amazingly, and I for sure teared up. And all I want is to see that scene again, to see if it's as impactful as I remember, but I don't doubt that it will be.

Even if you don't like superhero movies, please go and see this film. You don't really need to have seen the previous movies. It's a lot of fun, it's HILARIOUS, and all I want is to see it again.

If you've seen it, tell me how you feel! 

Lou xx

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

October/November Favourites | 2017

Hey Guys x

I've decided to do my October and November faves in one post. This is because I waited so long to do the October ones, which would mean that I'd be putting up a November favourites post in two weeks, which just makes no sense.

Anything that I fall in love with at the end of this month will go into my December Faves.

Anyway, let's get on with the post - it's a long one!

Favourite Movie (1): The Big Sick
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A review of this incredible film is coming, so check back on my blog in a few days. But just to give it the briefest of introductions, it's a powerful love story that has to overcome both illness and cultural differences, and I loved every second of it.

Favourite Movie (2): Thor: Ragnarok
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Again, a review of this is coming very soon, so I don't want to talk about it too much here. But, if you read my blog, you know how much I love Marvel, and you know how much it means to me. So I just feel like it's important for me to say that this film does deserve the hype it's getting, I loved it!

Favourite Movie (3): Wonder
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I've already reviewed this film, so obviously I don't want to repeat what I've already said. Here's the review, if you want to read it. But I loved the film so so much. It's a perfect copy of the book it was based on and I can't wait to see it again!

Favourite TV Show (1): Parks And Rec
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I'm currently on season 6 of this show and I'm completely loving it! Like many sitcoms, it's about a group of friends and co-workers, and the different paths that their lives take. At the moment, I'm loving the character arcs of Ann and Chris, they're two of my favourite characters! And in addition, Leslie and Ben are one of my favourite TV couples of all time. The show is so funny, and it gets better with every episode. I can't wait to watch the rest of it!

Favourite TV Show (2): Rick And Morty
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I am incredibly late to this show. I didn't think I would like it, but I started watching it anyway to give it a chance, and I am so glad I did! For anyone that doesn't know, it's about a grandfather and grandson who go on adventures together, but it's so much more than that, and so much better than I could explain through words on a screen. Give it a chance if you haven't, you won't be disappointed!

Favourite Song: Too Good At Goodbyes

Sam Smith is incredible. Everything he touches turns to gold, and this song is no exception. You've probably heard it by now because it plays so often on all of the music channels, but if you haven't, listen to it. It's a powerful, emotional song about loving someone less every time they leave you, which I'm sure many people can relate to. I can't wait to see what Sam Smith does next!

Favourite YouTuber: JaackMaate
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If you have even one negative feeling towards those 'big' YouTubers that everyone seems to be in love with, Jack is the YouTuber for you. He says what other people don't, and he doesn't care about the backlash that he gets from this. I'm gonna talk about one specific video of his later in this post, but here's his channel - see for yourself what one of the most honest people on YouTube has to say.

Favourite Music Artist: Demi Lovato

Demi Lovato has been one of my favourite music artists for, I don't even know how long. However, she's here again because of her live version of her song 'Father', from her album 'Confident'. There's nothing I can say that even does justice to her voice, or her song, so just listen, watch, and learn from a true vocal master.

Favourite Celebrities: Tom Hiddleston, Taika Waititi, Mark Ruffalo and Chris Hemsworth
Yes I'm talking about all four individually - I told you this would be a long post!

Tom Hiddleston
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Tom is my bae of the month, I'm basically in love with him as an actor and as a person. He's one of the only actors that I am interested in who has successfully, amazingly, conquered theatre, TV and film. Everything he does it amazing because he's an amazing actor, whether he's playing a spy, a super-villain or a Gothic romance 'hero'. Honestly, check out some of his work because he's incredible - especially as Loki in the MCU!

Taika Waititi
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Taika directed Thor: Ragnarok, as well as a bunch of other stuff that I haven't seen yet (and 5 episodes of the first season of the Inbetweeners!) and I just love him. I love his style, I love his personality, I love his skill as a director, I love the attitude that he has towards movies, I just love everything about him. I've wanted to be a film director for a while now, definitely over a year. For the last month or so, I've been feeling unsure about whether or not I could do it. But watching interviews with Taika, and seeing how he approaches his movies instilled me with a new bout of confidence. So if/when I fulfil my dream of becoming a film director, I'll owe a lot of what I do to him.

Mark Ruffalo

 I've loved Mark for such a long time, he's one of the only actors that I've consistently watched through childhood and to adulthood. He just seems like the nicest, sweetest guy in the world. If you follow him on twitter, you'll see the way that he's really passionate about the things that he cares about, including people. Just in general, he cares a lot about people, which is so nice to see. As well as that, he accidentally live-streamed the first 10 minutes of Thor: Ragnarok, which was absolutely hilarious and made me love him even more. And, he's also an amazing actor. I watched 'Foxcatcher' for the first time last night, you should definitely check it out!

Chris Hemsworth
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If you look at the four main Chris's of Hollywood (Hemsworth, Evans, Pratt, Pine) Hemsworth has never been my favourite. However, recently I've been really getting into him. Mainly because I've only just found out how funny the guy is! He's freaking hilarious! And this has come across in the latest Thor movie. His comedic talents and timing are spot on, and they really made me find a love for him that I didn't have before. He also seems like a down-to-earth genuine guy, and I can't wait to see him in more films!

Favourite YouTube Video: Zoella's £50 Advent Calendar

So, JaackMaate did a video where he opened Zoella's £50 advent calendar and gave a completely honest review. He wasn't worried about being overly nice about the produce dur to her being a bigger YouTuber, and to be honest, I'm really glad about that because it's nice to have someone telling the truth. The calendar is a nice idea, the design is pretty, but the products in it are not worth £50, and I think it's really awful that parents of impressionable children have to pay so much money for mundane items because of the name that's on the packaging. Jaack went into a lot more detail about this, so check out his video, but in general, I do agree with most of what he said. Feel free to form your own opinions on the product!

Thank you for reading!

What have been your favourite things this month? Let me know in the comments!

Lou xx

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Wonder | Film Review

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Hey Guys x

As part of 'World Kindness Day', I got to see this film 2 weeks early at my local cinema and couldn't wait to give it a review!

This is based on a book - whether you like the movie, or the idea of the movie or not, you all should definitely read the book because it's an incredible story.

So, this movie is about a boy called Auggie. All he wants is to be ordinary, but he can't be, because of his facial disfigurement. Or, more accurately, the way that people react to his disfigurement. When the movie starts, Auggie is about to go to school for the first time, having been home schooled by his mother until then. Middle School is hard enough when everyone isn't staring at you, when people aren't scared of speaking to you or touching you. For Auggie, this makes school 10 times worse. Auggie can't change his face, but can the other students change the way they see him?

I loved this film. Like, seriously loved it.

I loved the book, so I was really excited for it. But I didn't expect it to be as good as it was. I didn't expect it to be so emotional. There were at least 4 times during the film where I was trying really hard to hold back tears.

For me, the standout characters of this film weren't necessarily the ones that are expected. The character that I felt the most sorry for was Auggie's older sister Via. 
In the film, she describes their household as being the Earth, with everything in it revolving around the sun/son. She never gets attention from her parents because they are focused on Auggie. And she doesn't resent them for this, because she's come to understand that this is just the way it is - Auggie gets the most attention because he needs the most attention. And I just thought that she was so strong and amazing, and incredibly selfless. She was the best sister that Auggie could have ever had.

And then there were Auggie's friends. Without giving anything away, he does come to make a few friends, and his friends are the type of kids that everyone wants to know. They're able to look past his disfigurement, and to see the person that he is inside - and seeing that from little kids definitely makes me emotional.

For me, getting to see this film on 'World Kindness Day' was really poignant. Kindness isn't something that we should have to strive for, it should be something ingrained in us. It doesn't take anything to be kind to people.

'When given the choice between being right and being kind, choose kind.'

So, please go and see this film. It comes out December 1st, and it'll be worth the wait for sure, so please keep and eye out for it. It's an incredibly important film that everyone needs to see.

Have you read this book? Let me know in the comments!


Tuesday, 31 October 2017

What Would Blair Waldorf Do?

Hey Guys x

So today's post is gonna be a little chat about one way that I've learned to handle my anxiety.

I started uni on October 2nd. And when I say I was terrified, I mean I was TERRIFIED. I'm in my third year now, so this definitely shouldn't feel as daunting as it did, and of course, that's to do with my anxiety.

I have anxiety surrounding various aspects of my life, the main one of which is about being in social situations. So having to sit in 2 hr long seminars multiple times a week is a big source of fear for me, and part of the reason why I hate going.

So anyway, this year the anxiety was, and is, really bad. Meditation wasn't working, CBT never really worked for me, and I was just so worried about this.

While I was creating a new laptop screensaver for myself, I came across the phrase 'What Would Blair Waldorf Do?'

Blair Waldorf is a character from the TV show Gossip Girl, one of my favourite shows, and she's one of my favourite characters. She's confident and self-assured and amazing at basically everything, and she's always been someone that I've looked up to, since I started watching the show.

So I started to think about Blair, about what she's do in my situation. And I knew exactly what she'd do. She wouldn't be nervous or anxious because she completely owns everything she does. She's not paying 9,000 £/$ a year to be scared out of attending classes, or to not end the year with the awesome degree that she'd been working for for three years.

So I channelled Blair. I walked down the street with my head held high.

I went into my first class thinking that I was Blair, saying to myself that I'm Blair. And do you know what? It actually helped.

I'm not saying that I've cured my anxiety, because I definitely haven't. But it felt a bit like acting. In my head I was Blair, tricking my body into thinking that I wasn't as anxious as I really was.

So, that's a piece of advice that I have for anyone with anxiety, when it feels like nothing else is working. If you're being forced to do something that you're afraid of doing, channel the most confident person you know. Whether your best friend, a parent, a sibling, a celebrity or a TV character. Channel them, pretend to be them, and hopefully your anxieties will ease off a bit.

Have you tried this before? Did it work for you? If you have any of your own advice about anxiety, let me know in the comments!

Lou xx

Thursday, 12 October 2017

September Favourites | 2017

Hey Guys x

Like last month, this month's 'Favourites' post is up late. I had a lot going on at the end of last month, particularly getting ready for university, so I completely blanked on writing this post.

But I'm writing it now, and if you're reading this, then I got it up eventually!

What were your favourite September things? Let me know in the comments!

Favourite Movie: IT (2017)
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I've reviewed this already, so you can check that out here! But in general, I absolutely loved this film! It was entertaining, it was thrilling, it was completely hilarious, and I'd recommend it to everyone. It's not the kind of horror that will actually scare you, but it's thrilling enough to be consistently entertaining, so please check this out if you get the chance!

Favourite TV Show: Younger
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I honestly could not praise this show enough, I absolutely love it to pieces and it's my favourite show right now. If you're interested, it's about a 40 year old single mother called Liza who, after 15 years out of the workforce, finds that she can't get a job. So she does the only thing she can think of, pretends to be 26! Which works, and gets her a job at a great publishing company. However, as Liza starts to make friends and find love as her 26 year old self, things get complicated. Can she keep up the ruse? Or will she end up losing everything she's worked for?
Right now it's just finished it's 4th season, and I honestly loved every single episode. It's a great show in general, but I've found it's also great for stress and anxiety, because it provides some much-needed escapism. In fact, I have no idea what I'm gonna do now that I've finished it!

Favourite Song: Like I'm Gonna Lose You

The version that I've linked here isn't the original, and I've done that on purpose. The original song is by Meghan Trainor and John Legend, but this version by Jasmine Thompson is the version that I first heard. It was used in an episode of The Originals, and it was just so perfect in that scene, and perfect in general. It's a beautiful song, but Jasmine's voice just makes it over the top amazing, and I encourage everyone to listen to the version that I've linked above!

Favourite YouTuber: Hazel Hayes

As someone who wants to be a filmmaker in the future, Hazel Hayes is my absolute biggest inspiration. She's so passionate about her work, and with good reason because she actually makes really good stuff! Her new series 'Prank Me' is now out on 'Fullscreen', and although I haven't had the chance to see it yet, the feedback has been so amazing, and I'm just so proud of all that she's achieved and everything else that's to come. Look out for this woman because she's going so far!

Favourite Game: Sims 3
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I'm back in a Sims phase of life and it's so much fun. Of course, I should be focusing on uni work, but sims is just so much fun. I swear I lose times when I play this game, because everything goes so quickly. I'm sure I could play the game for 24 hours straight and not even realise it. My favourite thing to do is to create different types of families and let them play out to see what happens to them. They all have distinct personalities, and it's so much fun to look through their memories and see how their lives could have taken a different direction.

Favourite Celebrity: Gal Gadot
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Wonder Woman! Gal Gadot! Amazing! I love her so much right now, I love her work, I love the parts of her personality that I've seen when she's on talk-shows, and I just love everything that I know about her. I'm so excited for the Justice League to come out so that we can see Wonder Woman in action once again, but I also can't wait for her to do more different things, so that I can see her acting in many different capacities. I'm totally girl-crushing on this woman, and I love it!

Favourite YouTuber Video (1): Manager Josh Explains The Boss Baby

This video is so hilarious!! It's a Daniel J Layton video in which his manager (I think?) gives his opinion of what the film 'The Boss Baby' is about without having seen it. I had to replay the video as soon as I watched it because I was laughing so hard the first time that I missed a lot of the things that were said. Seriously, watch this video, I couldn't recommend it enough for when you want to have a laugh!

Sorry it was a shorter favourites today, but it's full of such good stuff/people!

What were you loving in September?

Lou xx

Sunday, 8 October 2017

The Roommate | Film Review

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Hey Guys x

So, today's review is on, as you can see, The Roommate.

The first thing I have to say is that, this film's reviews aren't really good. It only has a 4% on Rotten Tomatoes, and I think that's really unfair, so I'm giving my honest and unbiased review in spite of the criticism.

This film is about a girl called Sara who stars college away from home. There she finds a boyfriend, makes friends, and meets her roommate Rebecca, who seems like a genuinely nice girl, if a bit introverted. However, as time goes on, Rebecca starts to become more and more controlling of Sara, getting annoyed when she stays out late and wearing her things without permission. Is Rebecca just overstepping the boundaries of being a roommate, or is there something seriously wrong with her?

What drew me to the film was the cast. It stars Minka Kelly, Leighton Meester (Blair from Gossip Girl), Cam Gigandet (James from Twilight), Aly Michalka (from Disney), Kat Graham (Bonnie from The Vampire Diaries), Nina Dobrev (Elena/Katherine from The Vampire Diaries) and Matt Lanter (Liam from 90210), so as you can see, I had huge incentives to watch this!

However, I was surprised by how much I liked it. It for sure reminded me of 'Single White Female', which is a classic great thriller/horror, and this wasn't as good, but still an enjoyable watch.

I'm almost finished season 5 of Gossip Girl, so it was nice to see Leighton Meester in a different role, even if that role was the role of Rebecca who was terrifying!

Some parts of the film genuinely left me at the edge of my seat, mainly because Rebecca was making no secret of her love for Sara and Sara was being a bit of an idiot about it. If that was me, I would have asked for a new roommate from like the third day.

Something that I didn't like was how little the supporting characters were actually used, particularly Nina Dobrev and Matt Lanter. They both had back stories that intertwined with either Sara or Rebecca and it would have been really interesting to explore these more.

Overall, don't be put off by the negative reviews. I enjoyed it before knowing what review sites thought of it.

Lou xx

Sunday, 1 October 2017

A Strong Dependent Woman!

Hey Guys x

So this post is probably going to sound a bit weird, so just go with me!

It's great to be a strong independent woman, and I love women who are. But I'm not.

In some aspects of my life, sure, I can be independent. I can make appointments and do food shopping (online) and write and other things, without having input from someone else, and it's completely fine.

But in many aspects of my life, I an dependent. For example, when I'm making a short film or something, I like to have someone else's input.

When I'm doing something that I'm not sure about, I like to know other people's opinions of my decision before I commit to making it.

Before I go somewhere that I've never been before, I know that I'd love someone to come with me.

It seems that lately, the terms 'strong' and 'independent' can't be separated from each other, but I believe that they totally can.

I can be a strong woman and still depend on a best friend when I'm sad, or a movie when I'm happy, or a book when I'm bored.

I depend on Marvel to make me happy with great movies and in return, I give them all my money!

I depend on things a lot. Like, I am more than happy to spend hours and hours and days and days in my own company, but then I rely on random twitter users to make me laugh, or random Instagram users to entertain me. I depend on storytellers and makers and creators.

And then I depend on people. I depend on friends and family members for all sorts of things.

So in conclusion to this random ramble, I love the idea of being a completely independent woman, I'm just not one. What other people think of me is always on my mind, and as independent as I try to be, I have to rely on things to keep me sane!

What do you rely on? Are you independent?

Lou xx