Posted in Anime, TV Shows

Death Note – Episodes 11 to 20 Review

I became quite bored during these episodes. Same old, same old. There were some major developments and crazy plot twists that I’ve come to associate with this show.

Riyuzaki/L suspects Light and keeps him under surveillance, Light succumbs to the pressure and feeling cornered comes up with an elaborate plan that involves him and Misa Amane, the second Kira, relinquishing their ownership of their respective Death Notes which ultimately leads them to forgetting everything to do with the shinigami and the terrible power they both possessed.

The rules keep coming in every episode but I’ve sort of stopped paying any attention to them. There are a few fun episodes in between but mostly it’s just L sitting in front of the screen spying on his targets. He chained himself to Light which I thought was particularly awesome. As for Misa, she’s probably the most useless and annoying character in the entire show. I say useless because I dislike her but in actuality, she’s quite resourceful and Light took full advantage of her misplaced loyalty.

The guy just cannot stoop any lower. I haven’t seen that part yet but I bet all eyes of the shinigami that as soon as Light recovers his memory, he’s going to have zero remorse over what he has done.  My favorite episode out of these 10 would have to be “Matsuda”. He’s plain adorable and I hope nothing happens to him.

You know, it shouldn’t be this hard to reveal a little bit of a character backstory at this point. I’ve seen 20 episodes, for God’s sake and I still don’t know why L does not sleep. Why he walks bare feet and why he always sits hunched. Eccentricity alone isn’t enough, there MUST be a reason.

I absolutely LOVE how he speaks. It’s so gentle, his voice, almost soothing and bored out of his wits. He is my favorite character of the show. And Matsuda too. They both deserve hugs and kisses but L probably more.

There has been no sign of Ryuk since Light relinquished his ownership although we do see Rem, Misa’s shinigami now and again.

I can’t say I’m exactly “hot” for this show. I would not miss it, now that I’ve come so far. But days go by before I’m tempted to watch anymore.

Posted in Cool Sewing Projects, Me Stuff

Pocket Organizer – Sewing Tutorial

I’ve been getting a steady number of orders on my shop lately and I couldn’t be happier. Sewing gives me such satisfaction and pleasure, things I never thought I would get from it, at least a few years ago. It’s mostly book sleeves and zipper pouches but lately people have been requesting fresh stuff, new stuff and I just LOVE making new things.

I got an order for a sleep mask yesterday and laptop sleeve a week before, it was challenging but so much fun. The reference I used was from a written tutorial blog post and it helped out immensely. I’ve done written tutorials before (2 if you’re asking) but I feel as if I didn’t go into much detail or precision, especially when it came to the images.

I hope to change that with this blog post where I would be putting down “how to sew a pocket organizer” in ink, as it were. The design is completely my own, meaning I didn’t use anything as a reference or a guide for this. It doesn’t mean that no one else has made something like this before.

Things You’ll Need:

  • Your basic Sewing Essentials
  • Fusible Interfacing
  • Two fabric prints, one will serve as the main outer piece and the other as the, uh, not-main? outer piece. I suck at this, forgive me. Basically both pieces will be visible on the outside and you’ll also be able to use one of them as a lining for the pockets. The main one will be facing towards you and it’ll have pockets while the other one will be facing the wall without any pockets.

I chose this super-awesome and cool map/stamp/animal print which is African themed and a simple black fabric. These are both incredibly sturdy.

Instructions:

Step 1: MEASUREMENTS & CUTTING (Duh):

  • 3 pieces from each fabric print of your choice measuring 7.5″ x 9.5″. That’ll be 6 fabric pieces total of this size. These will make the 3 pocket holders.
  • 3 pieces of interfacing of the same size.
  • 3 pockets for 3 pocket holders. The first and the third pocket will be of the same size 5.5″ x 6.5″ along with their lining. That’d be a total of 4 pieces of this size.
  • I decided to do two pockets for the middle pocket holder. These will obviously be of shorter width. Again, you will also cut the lining so another 4 pieces measuring 5.5″ x 4.5″.
  • The connector pieces that would join the three pocket holders together into one mighty pocket organizer would be 4 in total measuring 4.5″ x 3″.
  • The hanging strip or the piece that would be used to hang your organizer on the wall would be 22.5″ x 1.5″.
  • Lastly, you would need bias tape to give the edges of the pocket holders a beautiful and finished edge. You will need 3 strips of fabric measuring 1.5″ x 35″. If you can’t cut pieces that long, just cut smaller ones and sew them together now.

Step 2: IRONING:

  • Do all the iron work right now starting with fusing the interfacing to the 3 of the 6 outer pieces. Wall-facing 3 or you-facing 3, doesn’t really matter.

  • Iron the edges of the 4 connector pieces as shown below. This will make sure that you don’t need to fold anything while sewing to hide the raw edge.
  • Iron the hanging strip in the same way, making sure to fold and iron over both shorter edges as before.
  • Iron the three strips of bias tape in exactly the same way.

Step 3: SEWING:

  • Start by sewing along both edges of the 3 connector pieces and the hanging strip as shown in the picture. You will not sew the edges of the bias tape yet.

  • Put each of the main 3 pieces with the 3 wall-facing pieces WRONG sides together and sew with a quarter inch seam allowance. The bias tape will cover the edges later.
  • Now sew the bias tape along the sides of each of the three pocket holder pieces. It’s hard to describe it but basically what you do is, you put the middle crease of the bias tape with the edge of the pocket holder piece, folding the creased side edges of the bias tape symmetrically over the top and bottom of the pocket holder. In that way, when you sew along the top, the stitches appear exactly below securing the bias tape perfectly. I will assume that you did not understand of word of what I just said. In that case:

Take care when you come to the curving point. Stop sewing about an inch away and make an L by folding the bias tape like so:

Don’t worry if you can’t do it the first time. I, myself, did it on the third try. Your pocket holders should now look like this:

As you can see, I wasn’t satisfied with a single stitch so I doubled it and stuff. I’m paranoid like that. Also, the bias tape is about 4″ larger than the perimeter of these pieces so it would overlap where you started. Just sew over the first edge, make sure the second edge is folded inside and the raw side is hidden.

  • Once you’ve sewn bias tape all around the three pieces, it is time to attach the hanging strip. Pick one pocket holder piece and place it right side down. Now place both ends of the strip about a half an inch from the top edge and 2.5″ from the sides in such a way that all the strip is downwards. Pin the ends and fold them over, now sew over the strip in a rectangle securing it to what is going to be the top pocket holder piece. The strip should now be facing upwards.

(I should probably mention the fact that if you had ironed and sewn the strip as I had instructed, you would not need to fold the strip like I’m showing you now. I did it because I forgot to tuck in and sew the shorter edge so mine were raw. I folded them to hide the raw edges. So yeah, do that if your edges are raw, if not, just place the strip and sew.)

  • Place all the pocket pieces and their linings right sides together sewing with a quarter inch seam allowance. Leave about a 2 to 3 inch opening for turning the pieces inside out. Iron them and top stitch.

  • Now place the pockets on the pocket holder pieces positioning them in the middle. Pin them in place and sew the pockets. You will sew the sides and the bottom, not the top. That’d be silly.

  • Take two connector pieces and position them at the bottom of the back of one pocket holder piece, on both sides of the pocket but a little lower, close to the bias tape. Pin them if you want and sew them in place. Now take the other ends of the connector pieces and position them on the second pocket holder piece but at the top instead of the bottom. Repeat with the remaining pieces essentially joining all the pocket holders together into one glorious organizer. Voila!
This is my pocket holder’s backside. It’s backside. HA! That’s hilarious.
This is full frontal. LOL.

There you go! One pocket organizer locked and loaded. This was my first ever so I will be trying variations.

Also, this wasn’t as neat as I wanted it to be. My machine is from the Dark Ages and it broke about 453636 times while I was doing this project. Stupid old rust bucket.

I realize now that the words I was looking for in the beginning were “front” and “back”, not “wall-facing” and “you-facing”. They completely evaded my mind. Human brain does that sometimes. So this was the back and here is the front.

Really looks like a chalk board, doesn’t it? Weeeell, I tried. You cannot fault me for that. Let me know if you try it and show some pictures!

Cheers,
Sara

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

Death Note – On A Knife Edge, Episodes 6 to 11 Review

L is not a teenager, and he is certainly isn’t homeless but the guy stoops, has dark circles under his eyes, walks bare feet and sits crouched. Intriguing? Why, yes. But apart from the fact that he is rich and has a butler, we don’t know anything about him yet. I really like his voice, the English dubbed one. So soft yet intelligent and eloquent.

Both Kira and L stopped their dance around each other and came out in the open. Well, at least L did. He’s gauging his suspicion of Light as Kira by percentages and it’s growing slowly. Meanwhile, Light in all his psycho-genius glory continues to meet L’s challenges head on while continuing his “purge”. I still don’t understand the guy’s deal. Had he always been like that or is there a reason behind this behavior. Hopefully, it’ll become clear in the later episodes. I’m impatient to understand what brought him to this line of thinking.

I have to say, episode 7 (“Donten” (曇天) / “Overcast”) was my favorite. It kept me on my toes. I fully expected Ray Penber’s fiance to get out of this alive but Light’s quick thinking saved his hide. Damn him. He keeps killing the innocent.

L’s constant scrutinizing of Light and vice versa was one of those things that you enjoy at first but they quickly become tedious due to the fact that it’s all happening inside their heads.

I didn’t know what to expect when it comes to Light when I started this but now I’m positive. The dude deserves no mercy and needs to be put down ASAP. He’ll just keep on eliminating anyone and everyone who comes in his path, be it a criminal or an innocent.

Going back to what the shinigami were discussing a few episodes earlier, it seems as if Light has figured out that another shinigami came to Earth with another Death Note because, God help the people of Japan, there’s another Kira masquerading as the original one. We even got to see her and her shinigami. What’s worse, she has the eyes of a shinigami. Yikes. That certainly complicates things, doesn’t it?

Posted in Film Reviews, Me Stuff

Logan: The Lone Wolf of War

Ten years. That’s how long it’s been for me. Half of my life, if you will. I’ve watched this ageless man age and grow and suffer while kicking ass and taking names. I’ve loved him and cried for him and wanted nothing more than to just give him a hug. Before, Iron Man, Captain America, Black Panther and the Avengers, there were X-men. And among X-men, there was Wolverine. No one deserves such pain, especially a good man like him. A good man who just wanted to be left alone but got dragged back into the fight every time. He fought to be more than what they made him to be. He was … beautiful.

I saw the film two nights ago. It, as they say these days, slayed my very existence, shook me to my core, made me reminisce, nostalgic and so very, very sad. The film was depressingly brutal and beautifully fitting. For a man like Logan, this was truly how it could end, to die giving all he had left for someone else to live to fight another day. That sucker.

Now, I don’t know about you, but this makes my throat close up and gives me an uncontrollable urge to cry. Emphasis on the uncontrollable.

The movie begins with a sleeping Wolverine waking up to the sounds of thugs stealing the tires of his Limo. He tries, very nicely, to ask them to step away, they don’t, he tries again, less nicely this time, they beat him up, he flies into his trademark rage and tears them apart, defending himself.

If you have never seen or heard about Logan/Wolverine before which is EXTREMELY unlikely, this scene perfectly sums up his entire existence for you.

I don’t mind violence in a film, as in, if it’s rated R because of violence and language and not sexual content (prudish alert!), I will watch it given that it’s something I want to see, like this film. I wouldn’t miss it for the world. Having said that, I don’t enjoy it. The sheer level of bloody murder and nasty ripping-open-flesh-and-bone action in this film had me like:

He’s limping around the entire length of the film, barely able to hold himself together and trying to take care of his beloved friend and mentor while being repeatedly shot at, stabbed, mutilated and kicked. LEAVE HIM ALONE. HE DIDN’T DESERVE ANY OF THIS. The whole film was emotional torture of the highest kind.

I’ve respected, admired, loved and rooted for this guy since I was ELEVEN. I’ve seen him go through shit and rise back up again, only to be put in the same shit in the next film. It went on and on but it was easier to ignore how lonely and miserable his life was because of the lightness of every film’s tone. It was virtually impossible to do that with this film, not only because it was darker, grittier and more realistic than all the rest with no humor whatsoever but also because Wolverine in this film is not what he once was, his prime long gone. I was hit and I was hit hard.

Another reason why I think he was subjected to violence more than the rest was due to the fact that he possessed healing abilities. Ooooh, this guy can’t be killed! So let’s choke the life out of him, let’s be as savage as possible. UGH. Watch this film and see what kind of impossible barbarity he was put through. And yet he ploughed on through life enduring shit after shit after shit.

“I’ve hurt people too.”
“You’re gonna have to learn how to live with that.”
“They were bad people.”
“All the same.”

This was perhaps the most beautiful conversation in the entire film, one that was mercilessly honest and gut-wrenching. Old man Logan gives his little girl advice, one that she’s going to need to remember in the future, one that is completely devoid of any sort of sugar-coating. Really, it would be wrong on so many levels if it was. The one giving it, the one it was being given to, the circumstances that lead to it, everything demanded it. There’s no “it’s going to be okay”, a hug or even a pat on the back. No, he’s straight as an arrow with Laura because he knows her life and sanity depends on it. That, and…

“Don’t be what they made you.”

Oh, don’t worry about me. Who needs a heart anyway?

With X-men he finally found a home, friends, loved ones, a place where he could live in peace. Never lasted very long, did it?

My familiarity with the character is restricted to the films alone. I haven’t seen the animated versions of him nor the comic book ones. For me, the only version of Wolverine that exists or matters is Hugh Jackman’s.

See? He was precious. He was frickin’ perfect. But what did they do, after decades of torture? They KILLED him. Oh, yeah. If you didn’t know and have just been spoiled, consider this my revenge.

Won’t lie, I was in denial when both Professor X and Logan died. With the Professor I thought it was a dream and with Logan I kept waiting for an end credits scene or his hand to suddenly pop out of the grave. Nah.

If I say anything more I’d essentially be repeating myself but here’s the last of it: I love you Logan/ James/ Wolverine, whatever you were called, and you would always be my hero.

Farewell,
X

NOPE.

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

Death Note: Our Dark Duet – Episodes 2 to 5 Review

No, I haven’t read Victoria Schwab’s Monsters of Verity duology but I think the second book’s title fits here perfectly. Light Yagami has made an enemy and they are dancing around each other, taking equal steps to uncover each other’s identities to take the other person down because as they both declare at the end of the second episode: they are “justice”.

I’ve seen 4 more episodes and they are titled:

  • “Taiketsu” (対決) / “Confrontation”
  • “Torihiki” (取引) / “Dealings”
  • “Tsuiseki” (追跡) / “Pursuit”
  • “Kakehiki” (駆引) / “Tactics”

Here’s a brief summary of all four episodes:

Light’s obsessive scribbling into the death note doesn’t go unnoticed, there is some concept of right and wrong left in the world after all. So even though he is killing off criminals who he deems “vermin” the world would be better off without, the law doesn’t agree. They bring in “L”, a notorious detective with a 100% success rate in all the cases he has ever taken and he’s given charge of the case.
What these episodes do is prove how disturbingly intelligent and perceptive Light, who is now being called “Kira” (Japanese for “killer”) by the masses, and the mysterious L are.
They go back and forth, making their moves, seemingly defeating the other until he strikes back and again and again and again it goes.

Ryuk’s amusement knows no end. The shinigami is enjoying himself and that is what he wanted in the first place. His brethren in their world made an interesting comment about him having another Death Note. Ryuk, you sneaky little bastard. He informs Light about some more rules and Light himself does a shit ton of horrible experimentation to test the Death Note’s limitations. The death god also makes an offer which is as ghastly and sickeningly fascinating as his face:

The shinigami can see a person’s name and life-span by looking at their faces and their eyes can be exchanged for half of the person’s life span, thus giving that person the power to know someone’s name just by looking at their faces.

Surprisingly, Light refused. His reasoning was perfectly sensible and equally twisted; if he’s to be the god of this perfect new world, he needs to live long. Funny that I’ve just read a book about villains and anti-heroes to stumble straight into this.

So the new rules were:

There were a couple more about shinigami in particular, how they don’t interfere with the person who has the Death Note and how they increase their life span by either making nefarious deals with humans or if one dies before their time is up, taking the remaining years for themselves.

Light took a step too far. Not that he was being entirely sane in the first place. He is the chief of police‘s son, for the love of God, has a sister and an adoring mother. WHAT is the guy’s deal? What’s the reason behind his God-complex? I’m understanding his psyche I just don’t get why. So what did he do that was a step too far? He killed all the FBI agents in Japan involved in his investigation just ’cause they were. Bye bye sticking to criminals alone.

L looks like a homeless teenager so far. He sits down in front of the computer on the floor in an otherwise bare room, is bare feet and walks like a zombie. His name starts with L, just like Light. How curious.

My interest is developing for sure.

Rating (for all 4 episodes): 3.75/5

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

Death Note – Let the Carnage Begin

I’ll be honest with ya. It was the trailer for the upcoming Netflix film that spurred me on, otherwise it would’ve stayed on my radar forever. Years ago, my brother told me about this anime show that he was watching about a guy who comes across a notebook that lets him kill whichever person’s name he writes on it. That’s all I knew and even though I wanted to watch the show it just never seemed like the right time. Until now.

I saw a clip from the film yesterday in which Light (really stupid name) meets Ryuk for the first time and I saw the first episode of the anime today. Since I already knew the most important thing of all, the rest didn’t impress me much. There is other stuff but I found the first episode to be a little, um, shall we say, plain?

I know nothing about the changes they’ve made to the film from the original and I don’t want to know. The only thing I do know is that they could NOT have picked a better or more fitting person to play Ryuk than Willem Dafoe. This guy does creepy like you wouldn’t believe! If you’ve watched the very first Spider-Man you will know.

At this point in the story nothing is a spoiler so here’s a recap of the episode titled “Shinsei” (新生) or “Rebirth”:

Light Yagami is a bright (I am too good) high school student who gets straight A’s in class. He is bored of the mundanity of his life and so one day he’s staring out of the window during class to the background of his teacher’s droning when he witnesses a book falling from the sky. He checks it out after class and the claim of the notebook is almost absurd enough for him to walk away. Almost.

The notebook has very specific instructions.

Seduced by curiosity, Light decides to confirm the hoax, only it isn’t a hoax and the criminal whose name he writes to test the notebook’s validity turns up dead. Believing it to be a coincidence, he writes again and realizes the enormity of his possession. That’s where we meet Ryuk, a shinigami or the god of death. (The dude is horrifying and creepy AF with that ghastly smile permanently fixed on his face. Like the joker, only a thousand times worse)

He and other shinigami live in another dimension apparently and he throws out the notebook into the human world out of boredom. Yup, everybody was bored, me included. The demon, that’s what I would call him, informs Light of some further rules:

How cheerful. Of course this doesn’t faze Light even though he is warned of the trauma this would induce. Instead, the episode ends with Light exclaiming in all his anime passion that he would rid the world of vermin and become humanity’s savior.

Hello? Are you just bored or completely insane? Cause that escalated quickly.
This was the first episode and I definitely need to learn more about Light’s personality and life that would justify him having a superiority complex. Boredom alone doesn’t cut it.

What I would have done if I had found the Death Note:

Alarmingly, I would have done the first two things Light did:

  • I would have picked it up.
  • I would have checked.

A 1000 points to whoever guesses correctly what I would have written in the notebook. I’ll give you a hint: his favorite word is “stupid”.

If it had worked I would NOT have written another word, unlike Light, and would have thrown the notebook at the bottom of the ocean. Good riddance.
Then again, maybe it wouldn’t have worked. You see, the notebook clearly states that the one being entered must be ‘human’. Even though there are distant similarities, I think it would not have affected an ape.

So, yeah. I’m continuing on with this, there are only 37 episodes. But I wasn’t blown away by this one.

My Rating: 2.75/5

Posted in Film Reviews, Me Thinks

Absolute Favorite Animated Films (AFAF)

Holla! Me again. This time I’ll bedazzle you with the list of animated movies that have stolen pieces of my soul one by one. With my consent, of course.
As before, I’ll list them in categories; the top ones and the honorable mentions.

ZE TOP 10+:

So these are the ones that I love and adore equally and I can’t really choose between them, they’re all so different and unique and awesome. I’ll further divide these into two segments:

#1) Childhood Favorites:

Spirited Away:

This is an Anime, a Studio Ghibli film and best one. I saw this years and years ago and despite watching it just once, it stayed with me for a long, long time until I decided to rewatch it. I didn’t know that I could love it more than I already did. It’s spectacular and strange and filled with incredible weirdness. It’s a classic.

Sinbad The Legend of the Seven Seas:

Why in the world is this film so flipping underrated? WHY? WHAT IS WRONG WITH HUMANITY? I never really could understand it. From the music to the story, the visual, the plot, the humor and the characters, it is MAGNIFICENT. It has one of the best openings to a film ever. It made me happy then and it makes me happy now. Brad Pitt voices Sinbad and he might just be the most endearing animated male character you have ever seen. Seriously, people, watch this movie. You can thank me later.

The Emperor’s New Groove:

The humor of this one is RAD. It’s why I loved it so much when I first watched it. I was about 10 or 12 and I remember laughing throughout the duration. The protagonist, Emperor Kuzko is an ass, Pacha and his family are so stinking cute and Kronk and Yzma make you guffaw with their antics. It is pure, unadulterated fun.

The Corpse Bride:

It’s creepy and nightmarish and garish and basically Tim Burton at his finest. Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter voice the leads. It is as far removed from a cheery, happy film like Frozen as you can get and I have been smitten with it since FOREVER. The visuals are stunning, the songs are gloomy and it is unlike most, if not all, animated films which is a biiiiig plus in its favor.

Mulan:

Yeah, nope. I don’t think I need to elaborate why I love this. Any body else fight the urge to stomp their feet and yell HI-YAH! during I’ll make a man out of you?

Beauty and the Beast:

For detail, please visit one of my earliest posts about why I love Beauty and the Beast and what I think about the live-action adaptation. Chop-chop!

https://inaholetherelivedme.wordpress.com/2017/05/24/animation-to-live-action-thoughts-on-beauty-and-the-beast/

The Road to El-dorado:

Again, it was the humor. Kids watch things for the fun of it not to understand the deeper meaning behind things and if the film is funny, it’s destined to remain with them forever. Two best friends, con men actually, go on a hopeless quest to find the lost city of El-Dorado rumored to be made of gold. The music is wonderful and catchy and The Trail We Blaze by Elton John is one of my favorite songs.

Oh, and the blonde one? That’s Kenneth Branagh.

#2) Recent Ones:

Howl’s Moving Castle:

This one, though. AAAAAH. I watched this because I was bored and couldn’t find anything else. Little did I know that it was going to blow my brains out. Studio Ghibli films are freaking GEMS and this is the best one. Tee Hee. I told you I could never choose. Fun fact, it is based on the book of the same name by Diana Wynne Jones and the two despite being NOTHING alike are amazeballs in their own special ways. The people who drool over fictional men take note, Howl will forever remain in your heart. He’s sassy, arrogant and adorable. Read the book version too so you have a better idea.

Coraline:

Living daylights will be scared out of you. I promise you that. And you might just start hating buttons after watching it. *wink* It’s bloody fantastic!! Based on the book by Neil Gaiman, Coraline is a genius piece of art and I dare say the film is better than the book.

Anastasia:

This film was such a surprise. I had no idea it would be as delightful as it was. Once upon a December is an incredibly haunting and beautiful song and it’s also one of my favorites. Anastasia and Demetri’s dynamic was glorious and for a cartoon character, Demetri was disarmingly attractive. It’s based on a historical figure, a Russian princess if I’m not mistaken.

Rise of the Guardians:

Ooooooh! I HEART THIS.
Reason # 1: Alexander Desplat’s score.
Reason # 2: Jude Law’s seductive voice. He plays Pitch Black, the boogeyman.
Reason # 3: Jack Frost. ASDFGHJKL.
Reason # 4: The Sandman. Adorable as HECK.
Reason # 5: Santa Clause, Jack Frost, Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny all together.

Big Hero 6:

I’ll never get over Tadashi Hamada. You hear me? NEVER! And I’m most certainly NOT satisfied with my care. *sniff sniff* Everything in this movie is cute. Hiro, Baymax, Tadashi and Fred I loved above all. It’s sublime, yo. And the cameo at the end by Stan Lee? GENIUS.

How To Train Your Dragon:

Toothless and Hiccup are MY BABIES. It does not get any cuter and awesomer and magnificenter and bloody fantastic-er than this. The first film was SO good, I was pretty much obsessed with it until the second one came out which did not help at all. Cressida Cowell’s books are hilarious but they are very different from the movies. Hiccup is a cinnamon roll through and through but I’m glad for the movie version of Toothless. The book one is a Seadragonus Giganticus Maximus and it is a very unruly and tiny dragon.

Brave:

Scottish accent – Check
Scottish pipe music – Check
Kilts – Check
Red Hair – Check
A Defiant Female Character – Check
Archery – Check
Your arguments, if there were any, are beyond invalid.

ZE HONORABLE MENTIONS:

These are the ones that hold a special place in my heart for various reasons but they are one or two levels lower than the ones mentioned above. I’ll be dividing them into two parts as well.

Childhood Favorites:

In no particular order, mind you. We had some of these as CDs and we destroyed them by watching them over and over again.

Lilo and Stitch:

My brother and I have probably seen it about 53765825283529 times as kids. I’ve also played the game which is totally awesome.

Hercules Zero To Hero:

It was in a CD and I remember this more than the first one because of that. The ones that we had we replayed them as soon as the movie ended. My elder sister used to get so riled up with us for doing that. The game version of Hercules is fabulous too. This was funny beyond doubt.

The Prince of Egypt:

Both films but I liked the Moses one the most perhaps. Deliver Us was a perfect song with beautiful lyrics, the part with his mother in particular was tearful.

Basil The Great Mouse Detective:

Also on CDs. I remember enjoying this but also being a little scared, the villain rat is positively horrendous. It’s quite unlike anything I’ve ever seen. But then again, it’s probably true for a lot of other films.

Ratatouille:

I don’t like cooking but I think this is the kinda film that can make you want to cook. A rat that gets to fulfill his dream of being a chef by hiding under a human’s chef hat and controlling his movements? What? It’s intelligent and delicious and downright brilliant!

Shrek:

Donkey, two words: SHUT. UP.”
I had forgotten how much fun I always had while watching Shrek. The start where he’s bathing in dirt and shit is my favorite, obviously. Truth time: I never liked the fact that Fiona turned into an ogre instead of Shrek turning into a human. That was mini-me’s opinion, one that hasn’t changed since.

Brother Bear:

All three of us siblings loved this one! It was heart-melting. Again, mini-me didn’t like the fact that Kenai was turned into a bear forever but oh well.

Treasure Planet:

Another underrated film. It’s such a shame because this is spectacular from literally all aspects.

ACOTAR fans, you’re welcome.

Aladdin and the King of Thieves:

Aladdin 2, not 1. The best part? Robin Williams’ genie. There’s a party here in Agrabah…

The Hunchback of Notre Dame:

I found this film to be dark and a little horrifying. It was hard to take it lightly because I couldn’t decide whether to pity Quasimodo or be disgusted by him or love him. The film had a sombre atmosphere but it was undoubtedly a great one.

The Lion King 2: Simba’s Pride:

Don’t look at me! We watched and rewatched the ones we had on CDs and that’s why we loved them more than the others. We weren’t aware of that pesky little thing called the internet back then. But I do love the first one too. We are one is the sweetest song everrr!

The Incredibles:

I waited and waited and waited and am still waiting for a sequel. Seriously Pixar.

Recent Favorites:

Tangled:

Remember that movie that had THE most amazing songs and THE most handsome and charming rapscallion called Flynn Rider in it, the one that came before Frozen? Yup, that one. Guess what? I love it more.

Boxtrolls:

I found this to be funny and fun but when I showed it to my friend she absolutely hated it. I guess it’s one of those movies. What you can’t deny is that it is unusual and weird, for me, in a good way.

He’s called Eggs. Isn’t he just adorable?

Strange Magic:

This film was strange. Weird AF. Both visually and in terms of the story. I thought the songs were too over the top except for the last one between the Bog King and Marianne. I have seen this exactly one time. It didn’t stick with me but it stuck with me. Get it? It’s been described as a retelling of Beauty and the Beast where the Beast does not turn into a human. And herein lies the reason why it’s strange and wonderful at the same time.

The Lego Movie:

Why is this one so cool? Why does Chris Pratt sound so cool? How does a cool being like Morgan Freeman even exist? Lego Batman and Lego Dumbledore are two things I didn’t know I needed in my life. The level of coolness this movie has is off the charts.

The Croods:

When both father and daughter squeeze Guy and break his bones, when Grug tells his kids stories that always end with “AND DIEEEED”, when he attempts to be more intelligent than Guy, EMMA STONE!!!! I could go on. It’s basically a treasure trove of priceless moments.

Whisper of the Heart:

Another Studio Ghibli gem. I fell in love with it so hard. It’s a romantic film and it’s sweet and lovely and charming. Anime is LIFE, man.

I know there are legit HUNDREDS of other more popular animated films out there. They aren’t in this list either because I haven’t seen them yet or despite being amazing, they didn’t make much of an impression on me.

Comment your favorites down below and let me know what you think.

Cheers!

 

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Urdu Novels

Review: Haalim Episode 3, “The Huntsman”

Okay, so “Shikaar-baaz” was considerably more intriguing and happening than the last one. There were a lot of surprises and sudden turns which are Nemrah Ahmed’s specialty. This, like the rest, began with a vision Haalim a.k.a Taliya was having about her and Adam being chased by “hunters”. The vision cuts to where the last episode ended, Taliya being recognized by Adam as Tungo Kamil’s former maid.

I still don’t have any clue where all of this is going and I can’t even begin to imagine. The characters of this book are supposedly darker than all of her previous ones. But I’m not sure I understand the depth of Taliya’s struggles, both her inner conflict about wanting to have a clean slate and the circumstances that lead her to become a con. Yes, she was used by her husband for money laundering, yes, she had a troubled childhood but it hardly screams dark and complex to me. I want more of an insight into her history because right now, none of this seems believable to me.

I’ve read characters with far more horrible pasts and when they battle their inner demons and go through the good vs bad dilemma inside their heads, it makes sense. Taliya’s, so far, does not. The conversation she and Datin had on the stairs where Datin summarized their entire criminal career was straight up convenient. Taliya did this and then she did that and then she became an expert and then moved on to something else and mastered that. PFHT, no. I don’t buy it.

Faateh Ramzal was also comparatively less insufferable. He gave straight answers, guys! And once, only once, he went into storytelling mode and it was admittedly very fitting in that situation. He’s still arrogant with that thou-shalt-bow-before-my-high-and-mightiness attitude but like I said, it was tolerable and seemed true to his persona.

Unexpected Things that Had Me Like WOAH:

  1. Taliya and Faateh. Eh? Er…but what about Adam the Pure and Clean?
  2. Taliya got the bracelet. HA! I did not expect that to happen so fast.
  3. Another clairvoyant? So there are more people like her. Interesting, VERY interesting, indeed. I hope this has something do with superhumans descended from aliens from another planet who want to take over Earth and WREAK DESTRUCTION AND DEA—
  4. She got the bracelet but failed to get the painting. I seriously thought she was gonna expose Ashar.
  5. Adam and his ‘noble’ quest to find the ‘truth’ about Taliya. There were so many backflips there.
  6. Something about Taliya’s birthmark. It had to do with hunters, I think? Dude, this is just begging for a super hero story line. PUH-lease let it be one.
  7. Adam and Taliya and the mysterious treasure of Tasha. WHAT? (*whispers*: alien tech treasure, shhh…)

Even thought there are so many tracks diverging from the episode, I feel that this one moved the story forward and was quite eventful. I got apprehensive after reading the second one but this one was really good!

Quote of the episode:

My rating:   4/5

Please, do share your thoughts below!

Posted in Cool Sewing Projects, Me Stuff

Phone Case/Wallet/Purse Sewing Tutorial

It’s been a while since I did my first written sewing tutorial post. The first one was about book sleeves in case you didn’t know which you probably did not. I have been busy with making things for my shop plus getting some custom orders plus running two Instagram pages. It’s a welcome busy-ness. Get it? That was one of my better ones.

Anyhoo, there’s this piece of fabric that I bought two months ago and it straight up refuses to finish. I’ve cut and cut and cut so many things and even now there still are 6,7 scraps left. This particular project was made out of desperation (IMMA USE ALL OF YOU, YOU STUPID PIECE OF CLOTH) and also a sudden burst of inspiration. The design is by no means a 100% original or unheard of but I did come up with it all on my own so I guess that’s what matters.

My inspiration for this project comes from Professor Pincushion, the Crafty Gemini and the Style Novice, whose videos I watch on Youtube.

Measurements:

  • Two large pieces of fabric that will be the main pieces. It really depends on the size of your phone. Measure the length and width of your device, double the width and add two inches to each dimension. For instance, if the phone is 6″ x 4″, double the width, making it 8″ and then add 2″ to each measurement: the final dimensions for the two main pieces would be:

8″ x 10″

  • Cut a piece of interfacing with the same measurements.
  • You’ll also need to put a tab inside the two pieces, that would make carrying the phone case easier. Cut a rectangular piece 6.5″ x 3″.
  • To secure the case while it’s closed, you’ll need some hook and loop tape that’d be sewn onto a flap. The flap needs to be about 4″ x 3″.
  • Aside from the main phone pocket, I made three additional pockets on the right side for money/cards/coins etc. It’s your choice really, the number and size of pockets you may need.
  • For the phone pocket, cut a piece measuring 7″ x 4.5″ and for the three smaller pockets 3″ x 4.5″.

Instructions:

  • Apply the interfacing on one of the large pieces.
  • Prepare the tab and the flap in the same way: fold them in half length-wise and press. Open the crease and place both corners on the middle crease, press again. Now fold the two corners on top of one another and sew along both sides.
  • Take the large pocket piece and fold the top about half an inch in and sew on the edge. Then, do the same thing to the right edge of the pocket.
  • Do the same thing with the three smaller pockets but fold their left edges instead of right.
  • Now pin the pockets on the large piece with the interfacing like shown above. Remember, for the wallet pockets, place a pocket on top first, then the middle and lastly on the bottom.
  • Align the pockets so that they are about one inch below the top edge of the main piece.
  • Now sew all the pocket pieces with a basting stitch. The sides you folded are the ones which will show on the inside of the case. The unfolded ones will just be sewed in the seam allowance and you won’t even see them.
  • Fold the main piece in half to create a crease in the middle.
  • Once you have stitched all the pockets on the inside of the case, take the tab and put both sides about half an inch away from the middle crease. One end of the tab should be on the left and one on the right. Make sure that the tab is facing inwards not outwards. Pin in place.
  • Place the hook and loop tape on the inner corner of the flap and like the tab, align it in the middle, but on the right edge of the main inner piece. Like the tab, it should be going inside not outside. Pin in place.
  • Place the other outer main piece right side facing down with the right side of the inner main piece facing up. Before you stuff the flap inside and pin, figure out to what point the flap will reach once you have sewn all the sides. Mark that point and sew the other piece of hook and loop tape on top.
  • Now with both pieces right sides together, tab and flap inside pinned, leaving about a three inch gap, sew all the sides with a half inch seam allowance. Back stitch at the beginning and at the end.
  • Turn it inside out, press and top stitch along all four sides, stitching the open gap closed.

I hope you enjoyed this! If you have any questions please ask in the comments below!

Cheers!

Posted in Bookish Balderdash, Me Stuff

The Goodreads Book Tag!

Oh, yeah! I’m on a roll. Start one book tag, you’ll start another and then it’s a blog filled with tags and nothing else. Kidding, I don’t intend to do that but I won’t deny that these are literal life savers when you can’t think of anything else to post.

As usual, I did not wait for anyone to tag me, nor am I ever going to. I’ve been on good-goody-Goodreads for a long time now and as such, I consider it my obvious right to do this tag.

For this particular tag, I’m going to annoy you with the screenshots of my Goodreads profile as answers to the tag questions. Let us begin!

DUN DUN DUN…

What was the last book you marked as ‘Read’?



It was the end of a very entertaining trilogy and part of a series I’ve come to love with all my heart. Check Angie Sage out!

 

What are you ‘Currently Reading’?



I have high hopes for this. I’m still figuring it out and so far it’s been interesting.

 

What was the last book you marked as ‘To Be Read’?



After Illuminae, I’ll gladly read whatever she writes.

 

What book do you plan to read next?

Well, after I’m done with the Summoner trilogy by Taran Matharu, there are a couple of series I wish to start. I think I’ll probably go for either Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson, A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness or Flame in the Mist. One of those three. Haven’t made up my mind yet, I have a trilogy to finish first.

 

Do you use the star rating system?

Sweet relief, I finally get to talk about my rating system without sounding like a pompous imp (and here’s my personal opinion on telling people your rating system in your profile on Goodreads. Like, why should anyone even care? Am I the president of the world?). Seriously, I don’t like it when people talk about their rating systems and I avoid doing things to other people I don’t like being done to me, but here I have to answer a question, SO

My rating history, I’ve rated 340 books so far.

My rating system is kind of a mix between the rating stars and the shelves I put the book in. Both of these things determine the level of enjoyment I got from the book. For instance, I have two shelves called what-the-garbage and I-dunno-why-I-bothered (stop laughing), these are both low level shelves for books that I hated but with a subtle difference. A one-star what-the-garbage book is infinitely worse than a one-star I-dunno-why-I-bothered book. Same principle with other high level shelves. And then of course, there are the books you put in the same shelf but with different ratings. So a 2-star what-the-garbage book would be equal to a one-star I-dunno-why-I-bothered book. To top it all of, I sometimes put book in multiple shelves and considering the fact that my shelves are based on specific feelings rather than general things, that might make it all the more confusing for anyone but me.



As to why I put books in particular shelves and with particular ratings: I have NO clear cut answer to that and there can’t ever be one. It’s something totally unique to everyone. I rate books depending on how I ‘feel’, which is as subjective as it gets.

 

Are you doing a 2017 reading challenge?



I used to be paranoid about this in the beginning but now I’ve entered the chill mode.

 

Do you have a wishlist?

That’s a funny question. Why, yes, I do. It looks something like this:

No, but seriously, the Goodreads tbr is one big wishlist, isn’t it? I don’t keep any other besides that.



It is but a drop of the ocean…

 

What book do you plan to buy next?

  • Assassin’s Creed: Revelations
  • Immortal Heights (Falling Kingdoms # 6)

Who are your favorite authors?

Oooooooooh. SO MANY!
J.K Rowling, Marissa Meyer, Rick Riordan, Suzanne Collins, Victoria Schwab, Soman Chainani, Ryan Graudin, Jay Kristoff, Amie Kauffman, Leigh Bardugo, Diana Wynne Jones, Angie Sage, Nemrah Ahmed, Umera Ahmed, Farhat Ishtiaq, Sumaira Hameed, Morgan Rhodes, Altaf Fatima, Katherine Arden, Laini Taylor and many more.

What are your favorite quotes?

I honestly do not keep track of those like this. I read a book and if I like a passage or a line, well, I just do and that’s it. I don’t memorize them. Here’s one I liked on Goodreads:



Deep, wouldn’t you say?

How many shelves do you have on Goodreads?

16 total. Feast your eyes:



Mother-of-all-books-sweet-and-pure has all Harry Potter books. It is the highest and mightiest shelf of them all and is above the number 1. Basically, there can be no other book in that shelf. Period.

Have you joined any groups?

I have joined only two but I’ve been invited to a couple more, none of which I accepted. I am active a little on the Pakistani Readers group. Between reading, sewing, bookstagramming and blogging, can you even expect me to?



 

I hereby tag anyone and everyone who is reading this to do this, if you’re the sort who waits to be tagged. Have fun and leave a comment!