#100HAPPYDAYS ROUND 2: DAYS 61-70

Happy Monday everyone! Here’s another 10 days worth of happiness, posted on my Instagram account. I am almost done now, and I can’t wait to have another successful happy days behind me.

61

Day 61: Did a Parkrun and got some excellent step counts in. Woohoo!

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Day 62: My mom got me this France mug. It is now my favorite mug.

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Day 63: No visit to Nelspruit is complete without a trip to the coffee shop around Bestie’s house, and we went three times. Because coffee is delicious.

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Day 64: Besties birthday!!! We had delicious steaks at Cicadas in Nelspruit. This is Steak with Halloumi, bacon and Onion jam. Salivating.

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Day 65: After an astonishing day of bad service, we licked our wounds at Cicadas with Strawberry Daquiries and Burgers. SO GOOD, with excellent service

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Day 66: We got our movie day in with two old favorites. The two new films (Chef and Arrival), now joins the favorite list.

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Day 67: A fun birthday braai with illuminating new terminology learnt!

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Day 68: Remember my project on day 58 – check how it grew!

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Day 69: Roadtrip home. It was such a wonderful visit, thanks bestie!

70

Day 70: More rings from Woolworths. These are so me!

What have you been up to lately?

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Movie Review: Beauty and The Beast (2017)

BEauty poster

Plot: An adaptation of the fairy tale about a monstrous-looking prince and a young woman who fall in love.

Of all the sentimental attachments I have to Disney classics, my attachment to Beauty and The Beast is the strongest. As a young girl Belle was like this guiding light – she liked to read, she was interested in a greater life and she was the author of her own story. She finds love because she’s brave and can see past the exterior, not because she needed rescuing. Belle rocks man. So it was with an uneasy mix of excitement and trepidation that I handled the news of a live animation adaption. Would they ruin it? Would they, GASP, try and be original? I am pretty happy with the original work and I would not have appreciated a new take where Gaston is the hero and the Beast is just a Beast – I’m looking at you, Maleficent.

BEast

However, I loved it. Emma Watson is most certainly not the world’s most accomplished actress, but she’s been unfairly criticized for her work as Belle. I was expecting much worse, both in terms of acting and of singing. People are reporting her as weak and unconvincing. She wasn’t. She is at times slightly wooden but not offensively so. Is her voice auto tuned? Maybe, but since I’m no Adele I am not going around judging people for their singing. Whether her haters like it or not, she’s a face of gender rights at the moment and that, combined with her serious personality and Harry Potter legacy made her a spot on choice for Belle. That yellow dress sure is pretty and springing and she seems to have good chemistry with Dan Stevens – who wouldn’t? – And eventually looks more comfortable with the role.

Gaston

A standout performance is that of Luke Evans as Gaston. He’s the boorish, muscled and mean spirited villain with such style that it is obvious he had the time of his life being Gaston. He also has hands down the best singing voice of the cast. My favorite musical of this film is Gaston, he was perfect in every way and the musical is brilliantly executed.

Josh Gad as Lafou provided the required quota of comic relief. He was just a bit over the top. I also didn’t really understand the issue with him being Gay. Goodness me, I guess I’m just that peculiar that I really couldn’t care about someone’s sexual orientation as long as they are decent human beings, and my experience with the gay community has me convinced they are, in actual fact, more often better people than their straighter counterparts. On further thought Lafou wasn’t particularly straight in the original work, so I just don’t get the fuss. I found the third musketeer’s reaction to his wardrobe change hilarious and spot on.

My only issue with Dan Stevens as the Beast is that I didn’t get to see more of his lovely face. It is a pity. He has a gorgeous voice. Considering most of his work was under CGI (mores the pity), I can’t truly comment on his acting in here.

Maurice (Kevin Kline) was much less of a cartoonish fool and a man dealing with grief and guilt. I quite liked this impression of him, and made the character much more lovable. Also great voice work from Emma Thompson, Ian McKellan and Ewan McGregor.

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It is true that Bill Condon provides an extravagant affair. He clearly had Disney’s massive financial backing because his sets are elaborate and finely carved. The only one lacking was Mrs. Potts. She definitely got the bums rush from the development crew. Everything else is so ornate and rich to look at. I enjoyed the castle crumbling as physical evidence of the Beast’s chances of finding his human form beginning to wane all the more.

I know the original work well enough that I can parrot the songs, so I picked up on the changed words. I don’t get why they did it though. It wasn’t necessary for the original works are close to perfect. My only serious complaint is the rendition of Beauty and the Beast. Neither the song in the movie or its’ rendition by Ariana Grande and John Legend comes close to the original Celine Dion cover. The new songs were dangerous experimentations. I liked all of them, but someone sure had balls to create new scores for such a beloved classic.

A lot of political commentary going on and naturally I was on board – women reading, doing their own thing, and specifically Belle stating that she’s not ready to have children yet to the complete bewilderment of her community is a priceless moment. We feel you, Belle.

I actually really loved this adaption. Disney has a knack of producing great live animations. It is somewhat lazy work with about half the creativity than an original production would require – just do good casting and great graphics and depend on the fans that are hit with a wave of nostalgia. It remains quite wonderful work however and I can’t wait to buy the DVD!

Rating: 8.5/10

Watched, Read, Loved: April 2017

April is the best month for South-Africa. Seriously – we have so many public holidays people are actually nice to each other. I took off a chunk of time as well, and it did me the world of good. I actually got some sleep in, saw my bestie and watched some amazing films. Without further ado, here is my rundown of April 2017.

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Movies:

BEauty poster

Beauty and the Beast (2017): The painful excitement that came when I heard they were doing a live animation of my favorite Disney classic was excruciating. Would it work? Would it fail? The QUESTIONS that plagued me.Additionally, B&B was released in South-Africa later than the rest of the world because of South-Africaitis, and there were conflicting reports to be read. Anyway, grabbing popcorn and sitting down to see this was really wonderful. I liked it, and will watch it again. I had Gaston stuck in my head for a week. I better not hear that tune soon.

One day

One Day (2011): HATED IT.

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Basic Instinct(1992): This is part of my Blindspot 2017 series. This year I am doing remarkably well with it, because Zoë and I watched a bunch of them in December because #besties. Basic Instinct is next on the list and quite the shocker. OMFG my poor eyes.I might never recover.

Anywhere but home (2008): I thought this comedy was quite funny the second time around (I know I’ve seen this before but I can barely remember it). It’s also titled “Four Christmases”. I’ve never understood exactly why some movies get two titles. Anyway, if you can believe that someone like Reese Witherspoon would end up with someone like Vince Vaughn, you can get through the movie. It has some funny moments, and sure they are the typical things you’d expect, but they are funny regardless.

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Twilight: New Moon (2009): I’ve been meaning to blog about Twilight as a set for ages now. I did Twilight (2008) easily, but had a couple of months delay by what succeeds it. New Moon is the most insufferable – both book and movie – but I sat through it eventually.

Eclipse

Twilight: Eclipse (2010): Eclipse is a strong successor and definitely superior to the ghastly New Moon. Edward is still an obsessive stalker, Bella is still pathetic, R. Patz and Kristen Stewart still can’t act. But decisively better than the infuriating New Moon.

Safe Haven (2013): The casting for Nicholas Sparks film is never specified for acting abilities. I guess the author/filmmaker knows his audience too well, and knows if he provides enough pretty people the film will be acceptable to his fans. He’s not wrong. I enjoyed Safe Haven and the acting is really better than the acting in The Lucky One. The kids were cute and the story was okay.

Hes-Just-Not-That-Into-You-2009

He’s just not that into you (2009): I always enjoy watching HJNTIY. My brother-in-law did not appreciate us making him watch it though, telling me that it is not also a guy-friendly film as I initially thought.

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Warm Bodies (2013): I just love this film. Nicholas Hoult is a zombie, and when he eats the brains ofTeresa Palmer’s boyfriend, he starts seeing some memories and slowly returns to human form. The cast, led by Hoult, are all quite charming and for a story that shouldn’t work it works really well.

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The DUFF (2015):yes, I watched it again. One of my favorite films at the moment. Such hilarity.lethal weapon

Lethal Weapon 1 (1987) & Lethal Weapon 2 (1989):
It was my first time around watching this buddy-cop series, and I really enjoyed it. The 1980’s were a glorious time to be alive obviously!

Blood wars

Underworld: Blood Wars (2016)

SO SLOPPY.

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Chef (2014): Chef is a film about good food and happy endings, and well deserved of its’ praise. I really quite liked this film!

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Arrival (2016): My review will be up next week. I loved this. Handsdown one of the finest films of 2016.

Drive

Drive (2011): I remember enjoying Drive the first time around, but I really couldn’t remember everything about it. I enjoyed it so much this time too, it is a phenomenal film and some of Gosling’s best work.

The guest

The Guest (2014): This film has a lot of science reasons it works well to the appreciative eye, but I can tell you that I would have loved it without the science too. Gorgeous directing, a solid plot and excellent score, this film is a great film to watch again and again.

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Prisoners (2013): Prisoners currently ranks as my least favorite Villeneuve film. It is on no level a poor film, it was just not my favorite of his. And it is five hundred hours long. *Scientific fact*

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Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (2016):

I can watch this movie indefinitely. It is the best!

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Crazy Stupid Love (2011): I definitely need to review this film again – It has been ages since I’ve posted it on my blog. One of the most inoffensive romantic comedies produced in later years, this movie will make you laugh and relate with some character in here.

Nocturnal animals

Nocturnal Animals (2016): This is my new hated film. Gosh, what a spectacular waste of my life. Pretentious bullshit.

 

books

Black-Hills

Black Hills – Nora Roberts

This is a particular favorite book of mine. I enjoy Dr. Lillian Chance – she is passionate about her work in the refuge she built and is smart and cool.

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The Concannon Sisters trilogy – Nora Roberts

While I do enjoy this series of books – Born in Shame, Born in Ice and Born in Fire, they certainly aren’t my favorite of the author. However, her love for Ireland does show when reading this, and I particularly enjoy the description of the scenery.

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Two Broke Girls Season 4 and 5

I’m enjoying myself way too much with this comedy. It shouldn’t be as funny as it is, but I end up really laughing at it.

What did you do in April?

#ForScience

Hehehe

Happy Friday, ladies.

And the gentlemen who prefer.

There’s a lot of reasons I’m putting up a #ForScience post. 1) It is a long time coming 2) I’m done with exams = celebration time and 3) It was examination time and I didn’t watch a lot of things and need some blog post posts. I’ve tried to be a bit more original with my choices – not just my usual picks, so I hope it finds resonance and brightens up your day 🙂

Let’s start off with Chris Hemsworth

I know, I know. I always pick him. He‘s beautiful, T9M agrees. Muscly, tall, handsome and by all accounts sweet. YEAH.

Chris Hemsworth

Chris Hemsworth 2

2. Beautiful and younger brother Liam Hemsworth

Some parents equal genetic lottery, and the Hemsworth line is certainly blessed as such. I’ve always been primarily on the Chris-train, but Liam Hemsworth has been catching my eye as of late.

Reasons: He’s 25, I’m 25, PERFECT MATCH OBVS. 2) All that leg – same reason I love those cricket players so much. 3) Those puppy eyes that shows such goodness.

Liam Hemsworth

3. The only man I prefer with Less Beard – Tom Hardy

I love beards. The just add to the manly man that no amount of muscle can do. Yet, on Tom Hardy, I prefer him clean faced. No idea why, but maybe it is because that scraggly beard hides that lovely mouth and we can’t have that, can we?

4. Max Irons

The guy looks like Prince Charming from a Disney Movie. It makes my heart sigh.

Max IronsMax Irons Smoking

The above picture is for perusal of my dear Bestie

5. Another new comer, Armie Hammer

I’m just going to say straight off the bat that if Armie Hammer didn’t take up a Russian accent in the Man from U.N.C.L.E, he probably wouldn’t have made the list. He’s not my usual type of guy, but that accent combined with the length, and perplexingly, his affection for polo-necks in that film, made me drool.

6. The I’ll make straight men gay, Henry Cavil

Just bless him

Henry Cavill

7. Scott Eastwood

Looks like his dad, but HOT.

Scott Eastwood

8. HUGE Jackman

Not really my taste usually, but yummy still.

Hugh Jakman

9. My Husband, Dan Stevens

❤ ❤ ❤ <3<3 <3<3 <3<3 ❤

 10. and Finally, my other husband, Chris Pratt

Chris Pratt

There we go. Let me know who you wish to see next time 😉

Top Ten Television Crushes

Have I done one of these already? If so, I don’t care because I am doing another one! My list has certainly evolved the past few months with some pretty awesome and fine gentlemen working their way in! As I’m writing this the post is threatening to turn into a novel, so sorry for the long one!!

Special mentions:

Luke Danes – Scott Patterson, Gilmore Girls

Jon Snow – Kit Harrington, Game of Thrones

Jax Teller – Charlie Hunnam, Sons of Anarchy

Chuck Bass – Gossip Girl

jess mariano

10. 

Jess Mariano – Milo Ventimiglia, Gilmore Girls

Character rating: 8/10

Smoky factor: 8/10

Final Score: 16/20

Jess comes in at number 10 because he is the perfect bad boy that every girl should have once in her life. He is not always good to Rory and his problems in life keeps him back, but later on in the story his character becomes extremely satisfying to see succeed.

Seely booth

9. 

Seely Booth – David Boreanz, Bones

Character rating: 8/10

Smoky factor: 8/10

Final Score: 16/20

I LOVVEEE Bones. The show is good and takes place in a lab which, as it is part of my career world, I enjoy immensely (although the drinking and eating around human remains… nope).

Booth is so damn fine. The height, the size, the character, just take me now. I have a big thing for the whole injured soldier story so that factors in really well too.

Damon

8.

Damon Salvatore – Ian Somerhalder, Vampire Diaries

Character rating:  7.5/10

Smoky factor: 9/10

Final Score: 16.5/20

I’ve only seen the first three seasons and I’m not that interested in seeing the rest because season three is already rather boring, but the main attraction of that show is Damon Salvatore. He is comfortable with his nature and doesn’t whine as much as his brother. Also, the eyes of Ian Somerhalder, paired with the black hair and that fuck-it-all attitude. Win.

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7.

Robb Stark – Richard Madden, Game of Thrones

Character rating: 8/10

Smoky factor: 8.5/10

Rating: 16.5/20

SOB. He was everything until George Martin was George Martin and killed him off. I’ve noticed that GoT has the same route – endear a character to the watcher/reader, and then pop him. Rob, with his curly hair, his kingly nature and his impulsive streak (that lead to said popping) made such a good character. Richard Madden was a great attribute to the show – looky wise, acting wise and execution of the storyline. He is sorely missed.

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6.

Tom Branson – Allen Leech, Downton Abbey

Character rating: 8.5/10

Smoky factor: 8.5/10

Final Score: 17/20

Tom Branson is initially introduced into Downton as a depiction of the unrest that was very much real in the middle and lower classes in Britain in the 1920s. Tom is adorable in his outspokenness and opinions and his fearless determination to give his opinion. His love story with Sybil is so romantic and fun because it is seen as inappropriate.

I love Tom. He is a good man and can see how the upper class isn’t all that bad although he disagrees with the class system. His grief at Sybil’s death had me so upset because it was done so well. His love for his young daughter and his determination to make life good for her.Just YES.

Khal

5.

Khal Drogo – Jason Momoa, Game of Thrones

Character rating: 7.5/10

Smoky factor: 10/10

Final Score: 17.5/20

If this post was based solely on characters Khal Drogo would probably have been lower on the list. His character is cool but let’s face it – even though the love story between him and Khaleesi eventually becomes so beautiful it causes physical pain, the start of their sexual relationship is not at all consensual (at least in the series)

So it is thus the looks department that brings Khal Drogo in at number five on this list. He is so hot. All that muscle and manliness and the little scar above the eye and his looks and everything

dean winchester

4.

Dean Winchester – Jensen Ackles, Supernatural

Character rating: 8.5/10

Smoky factor: 9/10

Final Score: 17.5/20

Ah Dean. Supernatural is such a great show (until season 5) and I’ve been scared plenty of times watching it. We all know who the better Winchester brother is. Sam Winchester is the most annoying crying baby that any show has had (apart from Carrie Matheson in Homeland). Dean however, is everything. HE is strong and resilient and such a good brother and smoking hot. His taste in music, his taste in cars, clothing and food. Everything just wins where Dean is concerned!

peter quinn

3.

Peter Quinn – Rupert Friend, Homeland

Character rating:9/10

Smoky factor: 8.5/10

Final Score: 17.5/20

This could really be a list of my favorite shows too, as far as the numbering is currently going! I really enjoy Homeland and even though I find the drama, especially in Season 4, very much like a war propaganda from the US, I think the show is really well produced and the characters extremely well written. Carrie Matheson is the bane of everyone’s existence, not just mine, so the show’s quality relies on the supporting cast and the story.

Peter Quinn came to Homeland in Season 2 but never really received the proper character development he deserved. Every season would start off with some introduction on his life and extraordinary work skills and then just fade as Carrie’s crying face got all the attention.

Season 4 finally really starts to focus on Quinn, and although I retched when his feelings for Carrie came out into the open, I really enjoyed that he got more screen time.

Quinn is efficient and loyal and dedicated to his team, all of the things which Carrie is not. When he goes into avenging mode, it is damn hot and I just want to jump through the screen. I enjoy the many layers the character has and how he struggles with many of the decisions his superiors make.

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2. 

Sherlock Holmes – Benedict Cumberbatch, Sherlock

Character rating: 9/10

Smoky factor: 9.5/10

Final Score: 18.5/20

Sherlock comes in a close second on the favorite characters list. He is so intelligent and quirky and Benedict Cumberbatch brings the legendary sleuth to the screen in the way that no person could have thought possible. The three seasons are all highly entertaining, the banter between Sherlock and Watson is sharp and acerbic and the chemistry onscreen between Cumberbatch and Freeman contributes to the enormous success of the show. The story is sharp and layered and excellently written and produced. However, without Cumberbatch this show would have been really good, but I don’t think that it would have been as excellent. His unique features and nature brings the character to life – no one will ever be Sherlock as well again as he. Then there are Cumberbatch’s eyes and that voice that just kills me. (The hair and his height and his trench coats too)

Michael

1.

Matthew Crawley – Dan Stevens, Downton Abbey

Character rating: 10/10

Smoky factor: 9/10

Final Score: 19/20

Matthew Crawley has forever ruined television crushes for me, because no one will ever be able to compete against him and walk away the victor. I don’t always go for blonde haired guys, so when I do, you must KNOW that it is for character reasons as well as looks. Matthew really perfected my standards here. His character is amazing. He is kind and compassionate in situations where it wouldn’t be unfair of him to lose his temper. He goes through so much in the show and he remains this gentle soul. I love everything about him and I can’t see myself ever giving this spot away to anyone else.

Series Review: Downton Abbey Season 3

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*CONTAINS SPOILERS!!!!!*

Rating: 8.5/10

Downton 3 wedding

Mary and Michael. GAWSH. Talk about the romance of the century. I love these two characters on a level where I actually need someone to often remind me that they are in fact not real. Their relationship has been anything but a party and their eventual engagement at the end of season two had me doing a dance (I watched that proposal probably fifteen times). It initially seemed that they were going to go on another deviation with the fight about the whole fortune of Livinia Swire that could save Downton if Michael chose to accept it, and I was rather annoyed and prepared to go tell them what I thought of this nonsense. Fortunately Michael has a head on his shoulders and told Mary that they were always going to fight and that it was a part of life, and their marriage happened. It was so romantic and beautiful and their relationship throughout season three was actually quite painful because hey, we ALL want that (and especially to wake up next to Dan Stevens). The Christmas episode nearly killed me. SPOILER ALERT: WHY Downton writers, WHYYYY? Was killing Sybill so horribly not enough? Killing Matthew after he saw his son for the first time just did not seem fair 😦 😦

Sybill and Tom

Then, Sybill’s death. I had myself right a little tantrum with this and actually considered taking a break from watching Downton till I could deal with the loss of our favourite opinionated girl. It was so painful seeing Tom try to save her, and that grief that was so evident on Tom’s face. He was a liberal and he loved fighting with priviledged people, but he loved his Sybill so much.

The whole Bates and Anna thing that eventually accumulated in some happiness. They are so cute, and I really enjoy how Bates becomes such a badass after prison. It gets so confusing at times because while you know he has integrity and didn’t kill his wife, he has that bottled anger that when it explodes it becomes rather nasty. I found his life in prison really boring but it had a point.

I was complaining about Lady Violet and Lady Isobel in my review of season two, but they really do improve in season three and I found them entertaining again. I like how both ladies actually like each other but would never be caught dead admitting it.

downton wedding

Lady Edith and Anthony Strallin irritated me quite a bit. I think the most central issue to Edith’s unhappiness is her resignation to settle for anyone. It seems harsh, and probably is, but she is so convinced of her unhappy future that it seems as if she subconsciously plans it out that way.

I don’t think I’ve mentioned in the two previous reviews how much I enjoy Carson. He is actually so sweet but still the prim and proper British man and I truly love the character. Jim Carter does such a good job of him. I really do enjoy how much he loves Mary even when she is being downright nasty – he sees the best in her always.

Overall Season 3 was really just as entertaining as the previous two. It tied a whole lot of story arcs up, and while I certainly don’t agree with two specific ones, it was once again a show that had me crying, cheering, fuming and laughing – everything a good show must be!

Series Review: Downton Abbey Season 2

Downton Season 2 poster

Rating: 8.5/10

What I liked:

The entire cast: Hugh Bonneville, Elizabeth McGovern, Michelle Dockery, Dan Stevens, Maggie Smith, Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter, Dan Stevens and Phyllis Logan (to name just a few) does a phenomenal task with the material they have. The cast works together perfectly and has an intimate connection that gives the impression that Downton Abbey is a real place with real people living in it.

The portrayal of the war. It was ever present with so many of the young men away all the time, but it never completely overshadowed the main plots. I thought it was excellently depicted and the filming of the war scenes was really well done.

Robert’s frustration at being a poster boy for the war but not being able to take part. I LOVE Robert. There is something he did that made me so angry at him but overall I really like his character. I’ve been on a rampage lately that older men and women should always feel like they still have a part to play in society when they retire, and Robert’s frustration at the “there-there” condescending nature of his superiors really highlighted the fact.

Lavinia Swire. I really enjoyed the character even though her sole purpose was to keep my two favourites apart from each other.

That dance scene with Matthew and Mary. Are all British women so wonderfully contained? If Dan Stevens danced with me like that and looked at me like that I would have passed out on the scene.

Downton Sybill

Sybil and Tom. I LOVE both of them so much ❤ ❤

The Christmas episode and the proposal. GAWSHHHHH ❤

Downton Mary and Matthew

What I didn’t like

Ethel. This whole storyline seemed so unnecessary and preposterous. I didn’t like the character’s entitled attitude and even though I had sympathy with her plight, what did she actually think would happen??

Isobel Crawley. What an annoying woman. She started out as quite entertaining and I enjoy her banter with the Dowager Countess, but her perstering attitude quickly got old.

The resurfacing of Patrick Crawley – it also had no point only to highlight Edith’s persistent desire to keep herself unhappy.

Bates and Anna. I love these two and their story but sheesh it gets really melodramatic in this season!

Overall this was a phenomenal season. I am so ridiculously addicted to this show it is not even funny. Even when I’m mad at the characters (I get hopelessly invested) I still can’t turn myself away!

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Series review: Downton Abbey Season 1

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Rating: 9/10

What I liked:

The humor: It is plentiful, intelligent, sharp, everywhere and of a higher quality that entertainment produces as a usual standard. It is dry wit properly used. I can’t get enough of it.

I now know that it is pronounced “Downton Abbey” and not “Downtown Abbey”

The costume design is gorgeous and suitable to the periodical setting

The estate – just wow. It is absolutely gorgeous and such a strong structure. I don’t often freak out about many buildings – architecture is not my greatest passion but I can really get behind a beautiful structure if it appeals to me. It was even more fascinating that this is a real holding and not just a magnificent prop stage.

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The depiction of relationships between upper, middle and lower class is keeping me really intrigued. All the sides are really well developed and gets proper show time. The Class system remains one of the most amusing hierarchical systems in the world. It is not really prevalent in South-Africa so I cannot imagine how people would willingly subject to such forms of oppression. It is interesting though, and the clear line between the classes even while they are still perfectly civil to each other.

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Maggie Smith slays. Just WOW. This role is so worthy of her time. The dry sarcasm, the disdain, her supreme lack of care of what people think of her, that entire character she brings so authentically to life. She’s my idol. That’s all.

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There are some characters I love and some I dislike, but every cast member does a wonderful job. The characters I dislike are purely because they were written for that exact reason – as antagonists. The characters I love the most: Matthew Crawley (Dan Stevens), who I can easily devote this entire post too, Mary Crawley (Michelle Dockery), whose sad and intriguing lifestyle I can think days about,  John Bates (Brendan Coyle) – THAT FIRST SAD EPISODE WTF, The Lord Crawley, who has such a loyal heart and works so hard to save his inheritance.

theo james

Theo James, I am so sorry. HAHAHA. My demented sense of humor was way too tickled about what happened to the Middle-Eastern prince when he visited Downton. It is just…. HAHAHA. The ramifications of how that poor girl must have felt. (Not disclosing who though #notospoilers). You are absolutely gorgeous though, sir.

That kiss. OMFG I nearly went through the roof. It is so beautiful and proper and appropriate and introduced on the perfect time in the story.

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Dan Stevens and his eyes. I get really irritated when people harp on other people’s pretty eyes. It seems so… false. But Dan Stevens has eyes that make me finally understand that sentiment of carrying on about it. It’s so blue and gorgeous and when he focuses on something… just hold me back haha. ❤ ❤ I also love the character that he plays. Matthew Crawley has the biggest heart and the most common sense, and I just adore his determination to stay true to who he is.

I really mostly liked all of it. The pilot episode is the weakest but it is still very good and the show picks up pace and character as it progresses through the season. It remains such an extremely cultured experience to watch, that I kid you not, I wore stockings the next day to work as a testimony of my adoration and desire to be part of 1912’s England. I really do dislike two of the characters, not for their acting, because it is wonderfully good and exceeds in making their characters exactly as unlikable as they were created to be. The relationship between Edith and Mary has so many complex layers and is quite satisfying to watch. I really sympathize with both of them – Mary has such a daunting task that goes against every grain of her personality and poor Edith is always found lacking next to her two absurdly pretty and charming sisters. They both did something that made me shake my head in exasperation – sisters should never fight like that. I see both of their sides and the vindictiveness of their actions – it’s horrid but there is an element of reason to what they do.

This is truly a wonderful show and enormous amounts of fun. It might be somewhat chaste to people who like things constantly bawdy (hey, not judging, I enjoy bawdy fun too), but it is such a lovely experience watching this DownTON Abbey and I can’t wait to get through the rest.:)

Movie Review: The Guest (2014)

The-Guest-Poster-1

Plot: A soldier introduces himself to the Peterson family, claiming to be a friend of their son who died in action. After the young man is welcomed into their home, a series of accidental deaths seem to be connected to his presence

Rating: 9/10

the guest gif

The Guest is a slice of utter perfection that came to us in life. I went in without any idea what to expect, having only read spoiler free reviews. It makes the best type of viewing, really. The insanely high ratings are well deserved and this thriller is perfectly put together. The chemistry and sexual tension between Dan Stevens and Maika Monroe… what the fuck. It was such a strong presence and present all the time. Dan Stevens. Those eyes.The body.The attitude.The acting.The bathroom scene. Have I mentioned the eyes? The focus on the male character’s appeal rather than the female’s.THE CHEMISTRY.

the guest dan stevens

Okay, now that the Dan Stevens perve is out of the way, let’s get back to the other aspects that worked: The storyline of a grieving American family still crippled by loss is a valid topic in our current world. It makes so much sense for them to immediately accept a friend of their deceased son into the family house without too much questioning. Dan Stevens delivers a perfect portrayal of a young army soldier – he’s all manners and politeness and kindness with a mix of loss that makes you want to accept him immediately. He offers the family assistance in every way, he gives advice to the youngest son Luke (Brendan Meyer) who is being badly bullied by other children, assists mom (Sheila Kelly) with things dad (Leland Orsor) is too busy for, listen to dad’s problems – it is clear that while they lost a family member, the family is still flooded with daily problems while coping with their loss. The only suspicious family member is Anna (Maika Monroe), perhaps because she is at a suspicious age and not as easily fooled as her younger brother or parents. Her observant nature alerts her that everything is not quite well (not a spoiler – this is in all the synopsis/trailers out there) even while she finds him more and more compelling.

Maika Monroe in The Guest

Maika Monroe..great stuff. I love her gruff and sulky attitude and how her personal style fits so well into it. She has so much sense in here, and I cannot say how much I loved that they kept the integrity of her character intact. She was sleeping in the room next to an insanely attractive and interesting man who she clearly had intense chemistry with but she still stayed loyal to the man she was dating. YAY for finally putting a pretty, sexy, sharp girl on screen that doesn’t just bang the newest hot guy. THANKS TO THE GUEST WRITERS FOR THIS.

I'm just enjoying putting pictures of him all over this post
I’m just enjoying putting pictures of him all over this post

The blood and gore was on a level that worked – it wasn’t senseless and was well executed.  The action scenes are flawlessly executed and not drawn out. The film is shot very well in a delightfully clear style and the sound track complements the story and the sequence of events escalates clearly. I loved the décor and subliminal messaging and especially the theming around the last few scenes. My only issue was that David Collins’ life wasn’t really explained in detail and that part felt slightly rushed. I might have missed this, but is it ever really explained why David truly arrived at the Peterson family? If it was, I missed that part.

This movie severely disrupts my top ten for last year and I will have to review it dramatically. The Guest is everything entertainment should be: thrilling, dramatic, sexy and entertaining as hell.

This pic... is.. everything
This pic… is.. everything