Posted in Film Reviews, Me Thinks

Quartet Film Reviews – Part III

Behold!

Suicide Squad

These hommies ain’t no Avengers, that’s for sure.

My Rating: 2.5/5

The plot is weak. Like reeeally, reeeally weak. Hilarious even, that one of the same people they recruited turned on them and they spent the whole movie fighting that guy. Amanda Waller should have just died of shame then and there.
I liked Jared Leto and his joker and even more his relationship with Harley Quinn. Those scenes were probably the best.
The absolute worst thing in this movie is Cara Delevigne’s portrayal of the Enchantress. She’s the complete opposite of a villain you take seriously.

This film was fun to watch but I’ve already forgotten about it and I don’t feel the urge to see it again.

 

War For The Planet Of Apes

I’ve loved every single Planet of the Apes movie so far (the new ones) and this was brilliant too!

My Rating: 4.5/5

They stir something inside you. Caesar is tremendously amazing to watch. The emotions captured on his face are so absolutely beautiful to see. Andy Serkis is a genius! It was deeply affecting and I loved every minute of it.

Spider-Man: Homecoming

My Rating: 4.5/5

It’s Marvel, duh. I had stopped doubting them ages ago.

Well, this Peter Parker is legit the worst superhero ever, and it’s freaking adorable. The kid is having the time of his life trying to catch criminals. He succeeds half the time, the rest he just ends up pissing people instead. He’s so caught up in this fever that he unwittingly displays mild jerk behavior. But it makes sense, what he’s going through.

I love all the main and supporting characters, I love all the cameos and I love the villain. He actually wasn’t as menacing as the trailer made him out to be. The thing that pleased me the most is the use of the Spider-Man theme song as the main soundtrack of the film. That was GENIUS. Why didn’t anybody ever think of that before?

Wonder Woman

BADASS.

My Rating: 4.75/5

You know what the best thing about this film is? The message is handled so subtly and effortlessly, without doing it too much or beating it on the head like a stick, it’s powerful and effective and so damn refreshing. So there was none of that (although I was expecting it):

Nothing in the film is overdone. I LOVED IT.

The film carries the same DC tone: gritty, dark and brooding but it’s also emotional, funny and action-packed. Gal Gadot is SPECTACULAR and the supporting characters are amazing!

The Amazons fighting is the thing you never knew you wanted to see. The action-sequences are LIT, the acting is RAD, the story is LEGIT and Wonder Woman is BAE.

This is the end of Quartet Film Reviews for now, I believe.

Cheers!

Advertisements
Posted in Cool Sewing Projects, Me Stuff

Good-sized Back-to-School Bag

More like “Back to University” bag since the person who requested this is a university student. I’ve been incredibly uninspired lately when it comes to my blog. I mentally berate myself everyday and say that today I will write something but I never do. So here is a super-boring post about this bag that I sewed.

She didn’t request this particular bag, just asked me to make something big enough to fit her supplies and notebooks and stuff. I just went ahead and made what I thought would fit her needs. This is an original creation. I did not copy this from some place else.

NOTE: This is not a tutorial.

Like I said, uninspired and just not feeling it.

This print is a favorite among everyone and I call it “FoxFell” on the suggestion of a friend. There are two versions of this, one with a darker midnight blue background and the other with a lighter grey one. I used both here to create a nice contrast. No interfacing or lining was used. Oh, and the fabric is flannelette so it’s quite soft and sturdy.

I believe the main pieces I cut were somewhere around 16″ x 14″. From there I just adjusted other pieces and pockets to go with it. This was kind of a last minute thing so I did it very quickly and hastily. The back of the bag, as you can see, is upside down, print-wise. This was deliberate.

The front piece has a little flap pocket that again, has no lining inside and no velcro tape as well. I tested if it would close nicely without the tape and it did so I didn’t add that. (PSSHT: *Pinking shears are life savers*)

Moreover, I didn’t sew the top edge of the flap to the bag, if I had done that the pocket would have been secure, not that it isn’t already, but it wouldn’t have served as a double pocket. So, yeah, that worked out and I wasn’t even planning that.

The back of the bag has a inside zippered pocket which are mostly attached in big bags. I loved sewing that zipper for some reason.

Then there are the sides which also have one pocket each. Those sides are really wide and pockets big to give the bag depth and to fit as much as possible.

I experimented with the straps, I have never done ones like this before. They’re attached to handles, all four corners. It gives a nice touch.

The thing she did request was that I add a zipper on top of the bag. That’s the only part I didn’t like. It was needlessly complicated.

I’m a little paranoid by nature. My biggest fear when it comes to the things I make is that they’ll all come apart, I stitch and double stitch for this reason. Even after doing that, I’m afraid that the fabric won’t be able to handle too much stress or whatever. God help me. I hope that never happens.

Posted in Book Reviews, Urdu Novels

Haalim Episode 7: تاشہ پسونا – Review

Tasha The Enchantress!

MY BRAIN CAN’T HANDLE THE AWESOMENESS. THIS IS GETTING WAY MORE INTENSE AND ASDFGHJKL I CAAAAAAAAAAN’T!!!!!!

I threw every reservation out of the window while reading this! Every. Single. One. Taliya’s background, the oddness of the prose, the feeling of something being missing. LORD ALMIGHTY, it all went away. Nemrah Ahmed is unreservedly brilliant and this book is getting cleverer by the episode. Fantasy in Urdu was an unheard of idea and I had my qualms, sure. It even took me a while to acclimate myself to that but now I’m a hundred percent invested in the story because OH-EM-GOSH did you read this episode?!

The episode was a freaking spectacle. Taliya Murad is a force to be reckoned with. There’s woman who kicks ass and takes names. I was previously dissatisifed with her character in general. Her “Mary-Sue”-ness despite being explained does not seem believable, I said. Well, obviously Nemrah was hearing because she took Taliya a step further. Instead of being told, we were shown Taliya’s childhood and the events that led her to what she is now. It all comes together so perfectly I just want to take a moment and cry over the perfection, gimme a sec.

Ain’t that badass or ain’t that badass?! Talk about big dreams.

Slowly, we learned how she started thieving and how she came to learn all these skills and knowledge she now possesses. And I loved it!

Now, I remember speculating in my last review that since the book involves Time Travel, and Time Travel is ridiculously messy if nothing else, one of the three characters might turn out to be a historical figure. I had placed my bets on Faateh since Taliya couldn’t possibly be the princess (HA) but you know what? Reflecting back at what the HECK just happened, both Faateh and Adam have a strong probability of being one. Oh, yeah, TALIYA IS TASHA PESONA.

There’s a scene where the same filmy technique is applied, to great affect I might add, where Taliya realizes who she is while she remembers what the history books say about Princess Tasha and the writer simultaneously narrates the instances in her life which coordinate with those historical facts. It was BRILLIANT! And the first time I felt this technique was done full justice.

And I find it hilarious that the person Faateh has idealized all his life is actually Taliya. That’s definitely bringing him a notch or two down from his high-horse. Adam is like this annoying bug that Taliya mercilessly swats in the episode. It was priceless.

Can’t wait for the next one. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect for the bia-monthly episodes to go back to one episode per month, haina? Just when I had started to enjoy things…Ugh. That was sarcasm by the way.

My Rating: 10/10

Quote of the Episode:

Posted in Film Reviews, Me Thinks

Quartet Film Reviews – Part II

The rampage continues…

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

My Rating: 5/5

Now, now. Don’t get your knickers in a twist. Regardless of what Rotten Tomatoes’ rating shows, it’s a good film. On an entertainment scale, it’s a solid five stars. And since that is the reason I watch a movie in the first place, to be entertained, I’d say it does its job pretty well. The movie’s main theme is beautifully composed, Henry Turner is MAJOR eye-candy and then you have the usual ridiculousness that made me guffaw uproariously in plenty.

The humor is positively priceless and the chaos happening all around is only too easy to be immersed in. But even though I did not care about such things as the plot and et cetera, I couldn’t help but notice a few, shall we say, off things.

  • Captain Jack has, mostly, lost his old charm. He’s more of a drunkard fool than the legendary pirate he once was. Seriously, he does nothing but run and scream and drink rum and be silly. Not a moment of seriousness or even a scene where he gets to show what makes him him, you know?
  • The film is predictable. I’ll take one instance that proves it: Karina the scientist has been struggling her whole life to find what her father supposedly wanted her to. When she gets mixed up with the pirates she finds her father *GASP* unknowingly and the moment she realizes who he is, he dies. Now there’s a waste of a perfectly good character.
  • There is too much happening at once. The writers were like yeh bhi daal do, yeh bhi daal do, sab hi daal do and they didn’t do it very coherently either. There’s Henry trying to break his father’s curse, Karina trying to find the island, the British Empire is chasing the pirates, Salazar screaming bloody murder after Jack and he’s like sandwiched between all of this, helpless.

  • It feels to me like the plot was written by a kid. I mean, random things happen that are supposed to connect the dots but they are just so, random. Find the book, wait for the blood moon, read the book, look at the stars, keep driving, arrive on an island, the island has stars, fit the missing piece, the sea will divide, and on and on. It’s like an ancient, cheap and unimaginative treasure hunt game.
  • Nothing makes sense. What the heck did Jack’s compass had to do with imprisoning the Spaniard and his crew, I don’t bloody know. Barbosa said something about the bald witch having a hand in the curse but the compass was the thing keeping them in the triangle? What’s so special about that compass? Also, since Salazar and his crew died and were cursed AFTER that, shouldn’t they all have died when the curse was broken? Instead they came alive.

Ah, well. I still retain that it was an enjoyable film but a not very structured one. The reunions were really sweeeet.

After Rewatch: I didn’t come any closer to understanding what I didn’t the first time except for the fact that the witch didn’t have anything to do with Salazaar’s curse, she was talking about cursing Barbosa’s enemies to repay his favor. No, it was, inexplicably, the compass. Huh. Also, I’ve come to really admire the music of the film. The main theme is so hypnotic.

 

Alien: Covenant

I hate Space. HATE IT.

Like, literally, every space movie besides the Guardians of the Galaxy should be renamed “Shit that can happen in space and 101 excellent reasons why you should never go there” parts I, II, III and so on…

This film is one major GAG-fest. I am stuck like a pendulum between giving it one star and giving it 3+ stars. Because the film is not that bad, I just happen to not like horror. Plus, these particular films give off very haunting vibes what with all shades of black and blue and gray and the frequent splashes of red. So…

My Rating: 2.5/5

I’ve seen Prometheus and I tried to watch the first Alien film, never got past John Hurt’s chest bursting open. I guess I wasn’t in the mood. These are prequels so I have no idea what happens in the future.

I totally saw that Walter/David switch coming. A horror science fiction film with killer aliens where people come out alive and stay that way? Whaaat? You speak nonsense, I dare say! My heart broke a little, I was shipping Daniels and Walter real hard. Michael Fassbender is awesome but it was a bit off-putting watching him kiss himself.

Yeah, so, why DID those Engineers want to kill humanity by that pathogen? This film doesn’t answer that question. And if David didn’t deem humans worthy, why the HECK did he kill all those aliens?

I may or may not watch the next films to find out. GAAAAAG.

 

The Mummy

My, my. This film is terrible. Like, literally, it’s the worst film I’ve seen in a while and definitely the worst Mummy film ever. The mummies must be turning in their, uh, caskets.

My Rating: 1.5/5

This half star is for Jake Johnson. For the short while he was there, he provided a nice distraction. Because this film is a complete mess. Russell Crowe is a bit of a stretch, even Tom Cruise couldn’t save this. It’s too dank and dry and the little moments of humor feel forced. No, I prefer the original Mummy series. Brendan Fraser may not be Tom Cruise but he’s still the man!

This is an accurate facial review of this film by the way. Tehehehe. I was like, whaaaaaa, go home, bitch.

So, no, in conclusion.

 

Assassin’s Creed

Ah, Michael Fassbender, we meet again!!

Cure for violence and aggression? Genetic code of Free Will? EH? *shakes head* I thought these people were supposed to be smart.

My Rating: 2.5/5

Not only did much of the film not make sense, it was so underwhelming. The ending especially. I was like, MEH. Visually breathtaking but empty of energy inside. Empty of a lot things actually, like common sense for example. I mean, cure for violence? ARE YOU NUTS.

The score was nice and the roof-jumping too.

Have you seen any of these films? What did you think? Let’s rant/fangirl!

 

 

 

Posted in Cool Sewing Projects

Rainbows and Unicorn Themed Happy Zipper Pouches!

I take immense pride in coming up with ridiculously and unnecessarily long blog post titles, you should have gotten used to that by now.

Before I begin the gloriously heroic tale of how I made these pouches I’d like to mention that this idea is absolutely, positively and a hundred percent NOT my own. All hail Pinterest and 5-min Craft videos.

Quick little snippet about me: I don’t hold any particular regard for Unicorns, I like them and all but it’s their relation with rainbows that makes them interesting to me. ‘Cause I love me some rainbows. Seriously, I love rainbows. I cannot stress this enough. If I was independent and allowed to do shit I liked, I probably would have died my hair in all seven shades.

Well, look at that. I found two of the most relatable gifs EVER.

This was long overdue but I finally girded my loins (what did I just write) and made these two bursting-with-happiness zipper pouches. They weren’t exactly as simple as I imagined, it always never is but it was a relatively straight-forward project.

They were sold within 12 hours.

There’s a small difference between them, if you look closely you’ll see: one pouch has six zipper pulls while the other has only one. The reason being that I took about 18″ zippers of each color and divided them in half. The halves made one pouch each. And that is why, the one that did not have any zipper pulls ended up needing an extra zipper, the pink one.

Another difference is in the attachment of zippers! The one with the zipper pulls has all sewn seems INSIDE the pouch, that is, they’re hidden. While in the other one I just layered one zipper on top of another and sewed it in place. I find the results of both satisfying.

For the back of the pouches I had originally decided to use this colorful butterfly flannel piece that I have but then I thought of the new fabric markers I had bought and voila! Took plain white cotton and after assembling the front zipper piece I cut the white cotton according to size, googled “funny rainbow quotes”, chose two I liked and wrote them. You just have to iron on top of the markers and the ink sets, hopefully, forever.

BEHOLD the rainbow happiness:

And some Unicorn goodness!

I just needed an excuse to use these gifs.

On a related note, since I was high on rainbows, I made two bookmarks with the same theme using water color and gave them for free with each pouch. Ah, the generosity!

Sara out.

Posted in Journal Entries, Me Stuff

Gypsy Diaries Entry I: September 2017

September is a month like all others but for two reasons it’s very special to me. One, Fall arrives in September and Fall is the harbinger of Winter which I long for with all my heart every year. And two: I was born in September. The 24th to be exact. I’m 22 years old now. Except for the typical albeit short-lived pang of “Haye haye, main itni bari ho gayi”, there has been no change whatsoever in me or my life. We have a habit of treating birthdays as casually as possible so there was no grand celebration which is fine by me.

The month kicked off with the fervor and excitement of Eid-ul-Azha. The Eid itself lasted from 2-4 September. My father was here too (he works abroad) and there’s a general noise in the house and a happy chaos when he’s here. He’s a very loud man. I take after him in temperament: we’re both short-tempered, quick to anger but just as easily subdued. I wish I could talk as well as he does, though.

The second day of Bari Eid is the day our entire khandan with all 4-5 families gathers on a farmhouse for BBQ. I’ve grown to be quite the hermit over the years so I don’t enjoy family gatherings at all. I didn’t this one either. I did take a few of my books with me a took a lot of pictures for bookstagram so the trip wasn’t entirely wasted.

When the aftermath of the Eid vanished with all its traces, life once again, became normal which is just how I like it: no change, no surprises.

There’s a show on air right now called “Yaqeen Ka Safar”. I became a hard-core fangirl during September. Bookstagram and Sewstagram accounts went steadily. Oh, I just remembered! The night we got home from the BBQ I found out that I, along with some other people, were mentioned in a MangoBaaz article about Bookstagrammers to watch out for and my following jumped from 390-800!

My shop did well and is still doing well, alhamduliullah. I got a lot of orders and huge ones at that. I’m only one person and I have to sew everything by myself so 5-8 orders maximum are what I can manage twice a month. I love my work and I love putting it to good use.

After Eid I went with my sister and got a bunch of new fabric prints. I uploaded them and got an immediate response. Speaking of aapi, my munchkin #3 recognizes me now and according to her, when he sees me on video chat, he smiles brightly than he does when he talks to his father. I mean, GAAAAAH.

During the third week, on the 16th we went to visit my uncle and it was, by far, the WORST experience of my life. I don’t have the stomach to put all of THAT down here but there was something really positive and encouraging that came out of that as well; my father’s support. I figuratively whooped that night. There is no question to the fact that women, mothers especially, are emotional creatures and they tend to listen to their hearts more than their brains, thus the emotional blackmailing. While fathers, our sweet fathers, they listen to reason, they take the emotional aspect apart for a second and try to understand what you’re trying to say. Each approach has its merits and each parent is trying to look out for their kid. But I prefer the latter.

Also, there’s this old man who “allegedly” sells cool square pieces of printed fabric. I’ve been trying to locate him, but he eludes me! Every time I go where he’s supposed to be, the baba ji is not there.

Hmmm, what else? Oh, yeah. The “goals” I set for myself for September. They were:

  • Selling 10+ times. Check.
  • 10 blog posts. Nope.
  • Reading at least 7 books. Lol.
  • Working on new pouch ideas. Didn’t even do one.

The books I read this month are:

  • The Golem and the Jinni
  • The Last Magician
  • Weird Things Customers Say In Bookshops
  • The Princess and the Goblin
  • The Princess and Curdie
  • Jo Ruke To Koh-e-Garan They Hum (I haven’t finished it yet)

The movies I watched are:

  • Kong: Skull Island
  • Gifted
  • Guardians of the Galaxy 2
  • The Lego Batman Movie
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
  • Alien: Covenant

Then came my birthday on the 24th, without ceremony and just as unceremoniously, it passed. I received some really sweet and unexpected wishes, all from friends on the internet. The last two weeks were spent mostly sewing and trying to finish orders. God knows I tried so hard to do everything ahead of time so I could get to those ideas of mine but one thing led to another and I couldn’t! This is precisely why I don’t tolerate even a second of variation from my schedule and why I hate unannounced visits.

I think I put most of it down.

Till we meet again.

Posted in Film Reviews

Quartet Film Reviews – Part I

Doesn’t that sound cool? Doesn’t it? DOESN’T IT?!

I just made that up because:
a) I seriously needed to write another blog post
b) I saw four movies back to back recently
c) I felt like reviewing them and separately would’ve been too much of a, … hassle.

I hope to God you understand that reference soon ’cause there is nothing sadder than an unappreciated joke. Nothing.

So anyhoo, I went eight and a half months without watching much of anything until now when I’ve finally decided to watch ’em all together. Last week I’ve seen, in that order, four films (obviously):

1- Kong: Skull Island
2- Gifted
3- The Lego Batman Movie
4- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Let’s go backwards with the reviews, eh?

https://images1.newscred.com/Zz02ZGJkM2JkYTI4MWM3OGRkMjJmYTRjMWU1YzJiNjI1Yw==

 

The Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2:

RATING: 5/5

Also known as the most AWESOME, COOL, HILARIOUS AND FUN MOVIE IN THE ENTIRE FRICKIN’ GALAXY.

I underestimated the first movie and I underestimated the second. How absolutely delightful are these people? Great music: check. Amazing character development: check. Humor: DOUBLE check. Baby Groot:

A GAZILLION CHECKS.

I laughed my butt off, awwed countless times because of that lil’ munchkin and was blown away by the general coolness of the film. IT IS SPECTACULAR!!!
I went into it blind and only when 75% of the movie had passed did I realize who or what Ego was. I had read about him on wikipedia a long time ago, he was a Marvel villain, and that didn’t immediately come back to me. Dave Bautista’s Drax was the cause of those countless gales of laughter. Dude, that guy is so stupid and blunt and annoying, it’s funny as HECK.

And don’t even get me started on Groot. People were already oohing and aahing over him before this which I didn’t get but now I do. And I absolutely LOVED the fact that everyone on the team acted like a parent to him, especially Quill.

The character relationships evolved so perfectly and they packed emotional punches. Nebula and Gamora, Yondu and Peter, Peter and Rocket, I was speechless. And lemme just say this, I WILL NEVER GET OVER YONDU’S DEATH. HOW COULD YOU, MARVEL? You gave us such a cute scene between Yondu and Quill. AND THEN KILLED HIM RIGHT AFTER.

WTF

Yeah, that’s probably the only thing I wasn’t too hot for. It’s amazing, really, how good this film is. The first film came out more than two years ago and I had pretty much forgotten about everyone other than the main gang. And now, during the span of two hours, I not only liked all the characters but grew emotionally attached to them enough to feel devastated when they went through shit. That whole Yondu funeral scene gave me the feels.

Bottom line is, this is a film worth going nuts for.

 

The Lego Batman Movie

RATING: 5/5

Holy Chocolate Starfish Batman! This movie is SO DARN COOL.

There are literally tons and TONS of things in this which are awesome and hilarious and fun. It’s the 99 percent of the movie so I’m not even going to try to list them. Ralph Fiennes is in it. RALPH FREAKING FIENNES. And you know what the travesty of the highest order is? He doesn’t voice Voldemort. Like, why?

So Batman is his usual self. Loves Darkness with a capital D, edgy, heavy metal rap music, isolation, has no feelings and feels nothing except for rage. It’s priceless.

He’s also a big baby.

Will Arnett has literally the best Batman voice ever!! And he did such an amazing job with this. His voice is 70% of the reason why I love this film.

I wasn’t totally into the idea of an animated film with Legos when the first movie was about to come out. I was like, “how can they do that, it sounds so stupid.” Well, the joke’s on me.

WINGARDIUM LEVIO-SHUTUP!
Tee Hee

 

Gifted

RATING: 3.75/5

A sweet but simple film. The performances were amazing. Captain America makes a great uncle, lemme tell ya. And that was basically the selling point of the film; the beautiful father-daughter/uncle-niece relationship between the two. I loved it!

 

Kong: Skull Island

RATING: 3/5

Yeeeeah, I wasn’t feeling the love too much. I mean, it’s super cool with all the neat action sequences and scary monsters plus Tom Hiddleston who’s really nice to look at. Like, really, really nice. Seriously, he’s the only thing of beauty among the ugliness. But, apart from that, I found the movie predictable. Nothing much was holding it together save for these sweet monster-kicking-monster’s-ass scenes.

The characters have no real connection and that bond you see, for instance, in GG2. The comparison is a bit unfair but still. It was remarkably like that new Godzilla movie. I don’t remember much except that Godzilla fought evil demon creatures that came out of the sea and then he said “peace out” and dove straight in and disappeared for good. Kong essentially does the same thing except that now, the humans are on his turf instead of the other way around.

Other movie it reminded me of was Jurassic World. Park. Er, any Jurassic movie basically, what with the “stranded-on-an-island-with-monsters-running-loose” plot.

So, yeah. When you’re done being awed by the sweetness, it’s pretty meh. Also, this is part of the Monsterverse? A-han.

Aaaaaaaaand, I’m done. Part II will come soon.

Posted in Book Reviews, Urdu Novels

Haalim Episode 6- “بازگشت دختر” Review

Shit has had the fan, yo. I repeat. SHITETH HAS HITETH THE FANETH.

Yeah, that was my FACE throughout this episode. It was filled with ASDFGHJKL upon ASDFGHJKL that had me short for breath. By far, THE BEST episode of Haalim and by the power of fangirling vested in me by Nemrah Ahmed’s brilliance, I promise you, your mind will be blown into smithereens.

What started off as a typical Urdu novel that promised to be different took an unorthodox direction when it involved the element of Fantasy in it, aka clairvoyance, but now, MAN! It’s gone up to another level entirely because, ladies ad gentleman, hear me clearly, this is HISTORICAL SCI-FI/FANTASY. There is frickin’ time travel in it. TIME TRAVEL.

Let that sink in. Go on.

Bless my Pakistani Women’s Digest reading heart. WHAT? I never thought I would live to see this pass.

Okay, so if I’m following this correctly, Taliya was born in the 15th century Melaka. She belonged to a clan of Pamboro or “hunters” in a village. The villagers were persecuted by princess Tasha so her father made a key that opened the door to a treasure. Only, that treasure was Time itself as the Pamboro clan could travel in Time with they key and the mark on their necks. Taliya’s father probably wanted to end whatever cruelty was being inflicted upon his people by herding through the Doors of Time into another period but before he could, his people were all caught and put to jail to be executed. Scared, the young Taliya ran away with the key and opened the doors herself. She was thrown into the 21st century and all her memories went kaput, until she found the key, that is.

The bits and pieces are missing, details like why Taliya’s people were being hunted even though they were the huntsmen, does the Pamboro people have different powers or just clairvoyance or even that Taliya was the only one with the power, etc. Obviously, now that the dream she saw in the very first episode, the beginning of this book to be exact, came to pass so unexpectedly quickly, the story will unravel meticulously.

You know, this episode reminds me of two books I’ve read recently. The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell which I legit just finished yesterday and the PathFinder series by Angie Sage. The former had a female protagonist that can travel in time and she and her people, the Mageus (people with magical powers) are persecuted by an organization known as the Order. She travels back in time, to the early 1900s to steal powerful artifacts from the Order in order to defeat them. Now you can see, the two are incredibly similar. Funny how coincidences work.

The PathFinder trilogy had the young Alice TodHunter Moon who belonged to the PathFinder clan. Only these people could traverse the Ancient Ways hidden beneath arches all over the world without getting lost. So there you have it.

The first shock of the episode came when we learned the truth about what happened with Aryana. That was heart-breaking and truly horrifying to read.

You’d me surprised at how quickly chain links fit together after that. That idiot Adam (yes, I retain Taliya’s opinion of him) wasted no time in coming to Melaka and confronting Taliya and after doubting and believing her/himself for the 56353th time, he went to Faateh. THAT led to an epic showdown between the three, Taliya’s first vision was fulfilled and the three entered the Door of Time to the past, that took them right back to the time and moment Taliya crossed her century for another. So now, a grown up Taliya returns to her home, thus the title “The Return of the Daughter”.

Welcome back to 1437. Enjoy your stay.

She comes clean about everything in front of the two men, exposing Asra in the process and frustratingly shuts down. No plan A,C,D. The Taliya that emerges into the rain forest with Faateh and Adam is dejected, depressed and guilty and she remains so right until the moment at the end of the episode when she has another vision about her people’s imprisonment by the princess.

There’s this thing that keeps bothering me about this book so far. It’s rather difficult to explain. Something feels off in the narrative. Like, there would be a dialogue or a scenario or a character moment that’d have me scoffing. I’m not sure I make sense but I think it’s have to do with the novelty of this story. Something like this has never been attempted before and seeing as I’m used to nothing more but talks of shaadi, marriage and wedding in novels, the narration, the unique situations coupled with Nemrah’s style is a bit of a struggle to take in.

That scene in this episode, for instance, where the trio is walking through the trapdoor to find the treasure on Taliya’s insistence and she remembers what Datin told her about Time Travel. It was so unbelievable. Datin cracked the whole mystery like an egg from an old book, legit figured everything out, believed it and casually informed Taliya much like a kid reciting ABC. There is so much strangeness in this interaction on so many levels: everyone knows everything, things happen too quickly, the prose feels odd, and I just … can’t explain it.

I’m also realizing now that Nemrah’s descriptions are a bit lifeless sometimes. That “aankhon ko sukerna”, “baal peeche karna”, “dil dharakna”, whatever. They get on my nerves and I don’t see as vivid a picture as I can even though the visual cues are all there. See what I mean? Probably not.
The film-esque sequences are in this as well but I didn’t find them repetitive as before so that’s a relief.

Just gonna throw a WILD speculation here. I’ve been proved wrong before, in the beginning I thought that Taliya was Faateh’s long lost daughter, BUT, that shouldn’t stop anyone, right? What I think is, since they are back in the past among actual historical figures, one of the three, most probably Faateh would have some form of connection/ties/relationship with the princess or her father, making HIM a historical figure. Get it? Stuff like that happens all the time when people travel in time. They have wine with Charles Dickens, a picnic with Vincent van Gogh, just watch Doctor Who. I first thought ALL three would have some significance in that manner but after Taliya’s vision of the princess, that clarifies that the two are not one and the same but different people. It’s WILD, I know.

Here we are about Faateh again. I concede to start warming up to him a little. My general opinion of him, however, stands: he is too perfect, too wise, too calm. I know he’s supposed to be this motivational character, this enigmatic figurehead all of us will look up to  but his demeanor rubs me the wrong way. He recuperates too fast for my taste, it’s a tad unnatural if you ask me. But I AM warming up to him so that’s something. He reminded me of Hugh Jackman so strongly in this episode, of Wolverine. They both face shit, albeit very differently, and come back up again.

ALL ABOARD THE HAALIM TRAIN!!! *peep peeeeeeeep*

Quote of the Episode:

My Rating: 9/10

 

 

 

Posted in Anime, Film Reviews, TV Shows

Original Versus New: Death Note

Rule # 1: The person who watches this film expecting no deviation from the original and a completely faithful adaptation is stupid.

Rule # 2: After starting the movie, drastic changes from the Japanese version will become evident withing six minutes and forty seconds.

Rule # 3: A person who still doesn’t get over it and rages at the variation should a) watch the Japanese adaptations instead or b) get a life.

Rule # 4: If you are reading this, expect spoilers.

Just sayin’.

Willem Dafoe’s Ryuk voice is DA THANG, YO HOMMIES!!! He absolutely nailed the “Humans are so interesting” line. I didn’t catch wings on his Ryuk, though but that is probably because I didn’t pay much attention. Otherwise, his rendition was flawless and so damn scary.

So, shall we begin?

Differences between the Anime version and the Film version:

    • First of all, Light Yagami, or, Light Turner as he is in this film. He is not an asshole, he is not a psychopath, he is not a veritable JERK and he’s not messed up in the head. He’s a teenager who has a somewhat difficult life after losing his mother and he’s bullied in school. Relations between him and his dad are strained because he blames his father for not doing anything about his mother’s murder. Long story short: His life’s not perfect, he is not completely evil, his motivation for picking up the death note stems from his tough experiences rather than idealism.
      Whereas Yagami was the exact opposite: horse’s ass, perfect life, evil and idealistic.
    • This is a 2-hour film which adequately explains the fact that a huge chunk of the original story is missing. In fact, apart from the central idea and a few main characters, everything is new. So no Matsuda, Aizawah, Rem, Near and a lot of other characters.
    • The film does a much, MUCH better job at explaining things, particularly Light and L’s pasts and why they are what they are. With the anime I was disappointed in terms of L’s origin story.
    • Misa Amane is Mia and she as worse as the original one. While Misa was gullible, willing to go to extreme lengths for Light, Mia displays the same love but it’s overshadowed by her need to have the Death Note. In this version, she is more idealistic than Light himself. He tries to draw a line multiple times but she fights against it.
    • Their relationship is obviously not one-sided this time as Light isn’t dead inside.
    • Ryuk is considerably more malevolent. The shinigami don’t  goad the owners or “keepers” of the Death Note but he coerces Light whenever he gets the chance.
    • Yagami encountered Ryuk in his room while being calm AF while Turner lost his shit while inside a classroom during detention. It was hilarious. Nat Wolff really has a very nice scream.
    • L remains L and Watari remains Watari. I have EXTREMELY mixed feelings about the American version of L. He’s black, which in itself is absolutely fine, BUT, I wanted to see him, above all others, true to the anime version. He’s supposed to be pale as death, queer in his habits with dark circles under his eyes, evidence of his lack of sleep and sun. I put it past me after a while and was able to enjoy the actor’s portrayal. His mannerisms, way of speaking and the incessant munching was so accurate I was almost delighted. Until, L turned out to be insane. Yup. He’s aggressive, hysterical, he shouts (which the original L never did) and he seems unhinged. Again, the L I love was odd and everything but he had this way about himself, that soft way of speaking. The actor mimicked this softness pretty well but it didn’t last long.
    • The gory details, though.

  • I loved how Light turned the situation in his favor at the end despite being double-crossed by Mia. I thought that was AWESOME and reminded me of  Light Yagami for a second.

I had my qualms but this was as good as it was gonna get. I’m chilled but that’s gotta be because I’m not a die-hard fan of Death Note. If someone did something like this to, say, Harry Potter I would have totally flipped out and destroyed everything in my path, BUT, the thing is, where adaptations are concerned, you have got to keep your head and realize that if a different country/language is interpreting something, they’re likely to either modify things according to their culture or take some form of artistic license. You want a faithful adaptation? Well, then go watch the Japanese versions. Easy peasy. But showering a man with death threats AFTER he was given permission to do his own spin by the CREATORS? You are messed up, people. That’s all I have to say.

My Rating: 6.5/10

 

Posted in Anime, TV Shows, Uncategorized

Death Note Episodes 31-37 Review: Well, it’s certainly been Interesting!

That’s the one word I’d use to describe this show: interesting. I loved the idea. The concept was so fresh and unique. Instead of a protagonist, we had an antagonist as the main character. 37 episodes were spent hating his guts and cursing his soul. Maybe that is why I didn’t completely go ga-ga over this show. It’s hard to like something when it’s dominated by the thing you hate the most.

And so, Light Yagami suffered the fate he deserved. He didn’t die quick, that is my only consolation. Misa attempted suicide and Matsuda and Aizawah came away unscathed. Phew. As for Riyuk, he was true to how he was when he first met Light: bored and in need of entertainment so as Light lay dying, Riyuk could be heard saying that he had an interesting time in the human world because of Light. He was never as emotionally attached to Light as Rem was to Misa. I wish he could have said all that to Light’s dying face.

Matsuda was the BOSS in the last episode. He was hurt beyond imagining by Light’s revelation and when he tried to be smart Matsuda shot at him with quick precision. BANG BANG BANG. So satisfying.

The creepy asshole that Light picked as his ‘chosen one’ or second Kira also died a death that was hilarious to watch. He and Light both turned so effing scary at the end. Light came completely unhinged as he wasn’t familiar with defeat, humiliation and being caught so he became a deranged lunatic in a matter of seconds.

I think the whole ‘successor of L’ thing was completely unnecessary. L could have been alive and had he been the one solving this case and convicting Light, it would have been much more satisfying and fitting. The incorporation of Near and Mellow was pointless as little to no backstory was told by their inclusion.

My favorite characters have been L, Matsuda, Aizawah and Chief Yagami. Two survived, two didn’t.

Oh, well. I had a jolly good time. Sometimes I was bored, most of the times I wasn’t but it was an excellent show regardless. There’s nothing more I can add to this, my mind is totally blank at the moment.

Now, I’ll get to the thing that prompted me to watch this in the first place: the Netflix movie!!!

My Rating for this show: 8.5/10