Stories of the Month: September 2017

Movies

Victor Frankenstein (2015)

I’ll be honest, I only recorded this movie on my DVR because I knew that Daniel Radcliffe was in it. I always like to watch his films because he’s a very good actor who’s capable of being someone that’s not Harry Potter. That said, pretty much everything Daniel Radcliffe has been in since Harry Potter has gotten very bad reviews. I really like this cast individually. I like Daniel Radcliffe, Jessica Brown Findlay (Downton Abbey), and Andrew Scott (Sherlock) so I was enjoying them in each of their roles. I also really liked the back story of Igor being a medical genius that was stunted by his “deformity” and forced to live a life in the circus. I really liked the chase scene when Dr. Frankenstein was getting Igor out of the circus, it was well shot and fun to follow. Igor’s love interest with Lorelei was also nice because that’s unusual, I think, in a Frankenstein film. Typically the mutant is simply the mutant, but this film took Igor’s deformity away from him early in the story. This gave Igor a chance to become more than the crippled lackey that would typically be present in a film like this. That said, the plot went a bit stale for me. I liked the beginning but then got pretty bored by the main story line that had obviously turned into the common versions of Frankenstein that everyone already knows.

My Grade: C
Rotten Tomatoes: 24%

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (2016)

I had heard some buzz surrounding this film when it came out last year, but I only just recently recorded it on my DVR. I was looking forward to it because I am a fan of Andy Samberg from SNL/Lonely Island and Brooklyn Nine-Nine so I knew that if nothing else, this movie would be funny. There were plenty of laugh out loud moments. I watched this one while packing to go back to college, but I didn’t need to pay attention too closely so it was a nice chilled-out experience overall. I definitely recommend that SNL and Brooklyn Nine-Nine fans check this one out because there are tons of cameos from all kinds of celebrities, some I expected and others came out of nowhere and were fun to see! Last note is that this actually has a really high Rotten Tomatoes score which also took me by surprise.

My Grade: B+
Rotten Tomatoes: 78%

To the Bone (2017)

This is a film about the struggle to recover from severe eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa (there are others but those are the most well-known since they are usually covered in health classes). The unique aspect that this film holds over perhaps many other films involving eating disorders, is that both the director and main actress have struggled with eating disorders. There is a disclaimer at the start of the film that sensitive topics are involved, which is always a good idea. Moving on from the technicalities, I thought this film was very well done cinematically and emotionally. The message being spread is not a glorification of eating disorders but that help can only be accepted when help is wanted and that it takes a while for a person to accept that they need to get help. This film uses the aspect of family to show the effects an eating disorder has on loved ones as well as the sufferer. Lily Collins, who has opened up about previously having an eating disorder, really got into this role by actually losing weight (safely) to create the right image of her character for the film. Personally, I think that’s a very brave choice and one that she could only have made if she had fully recovered from her past eating disorder. Overall, I found this film inspiring and beautiful and I think it’s a great addition to the Netflix Orginal collection.

My Grade: A-
Rotten Tomatoes: 68%

 

Dead Poet’s Society (1989)

I’ve wanted to watch this film for SO LONG. Therefore, I finally watched this classic and I loved every second. I actually (probably surprisingly) had no clue how dark this film’s plot was. I was not expecting the suicide and that probably sounds so dumb because who doesn’t know this film, but I had never seen it or had anyone explain the plot to me before. The only reference I knew going in was that the phrase “Oh captain my captain” was popularized by this movie. I feel much better about myself knowing that I have watched this movie now. That is all.

My Grade
Rotten Tomatoes

Other:

L’auberge Espagnole (2002)

Lame. Do not recommend.

Rating: D

Television

I didn’t watch a ton of drama shows this month, that was a big thing this summer, but I just don’t have as much time to watch tv while at school so it will probably be this way for the next couple of months. Plus, most Fall shows don’t start until late September/mid-October, so this month has been a lull for new stuff. I’m going to fill this space by giving a quick opinion on the winners of my two favorite summer reality TV competition shows:

Big Brother Season 19

I have been watching this show for at least half of my life at this point, probably more than half, and I still love it. I am a big fan of Paul so I was disappointed that the jury votes came down to Cody’s final vindictive vote. I think Paul played very well this season and while he may have stabbed people in the back, I had hoped the jury would have seen that his masterminded game-play far surpassed anything Josh did all season. I won’t drone on any longer but Paul should have won and I am dreading Jody’s imminent trip around the world on the next season of Amazing Race *barf*

So You Think You Can Dance Season

I have been watching this show since season one when I was about 8 or 9 years old. It was, of course, my childhood dance dream to be on this show but alas I’m not pursuing a dance career so intense and just am not at that point. Tangents aside, I was rooting for Le all season, although Koine was a worthy runner up. They are both amazing dancers, but I am very happy with the way the finale ended. I can always count on America to be on the same page when voting for contestants on SYTYCD (unlike some other shows *cough cough AGT cough cough*)

Books

27272506The Glittering Court (The Glittering Court #1) by Richelle Mead

LOVED IT. I have had this book on my TBR list since I bought it but I finally got around to starting it at the end of the summer. Then I took my sweet time reading because I have a hard copy and rarely have time to read fun hard copies with all my school reading. I am so glad I spent last Friday night powering through the last 50 pages. I had been skeptical about the idea of reading a series that followed three characters but followed the same timeline for all three books. I thought that sounded stupid and boring, but the way Richelle has written holes into Tamsin and Mira’s plot lines has me kicking myself for ever doubting my favorite author’s skills! I can’t wait to get Midnight Jewel and read Mira’s story. Full review to come!

My Rating: 4.5 Stars
Goodreads Rating: 3.44 Stars

29343886Hungry For Love by Lucy Beresford

I read this book as an e-ARC kindly provided by Netgalley. I thought this novel was sweet and entertaining. It would have been a fun summer read if I had read it in the summer but I did not. I’ll have a full review up sometime soon!

UK release date:
US release date:

My Rating: 3.5 Stars
Goodreads Rating: 3.83 Stars

26135825 Fun Home by Alison Bechdel

Just for the record, I won’t be putting up a full review for any class-assigned readings, and there will be a ton of those this year since I am studying English! I really enjoyed reading this story. We’ve really dissected a large amount of the allusions and details used in Bechdel’s graphic memoir, but it’s an overall great read. I was fascinated by Alison’s story and the way she weaved it together with the story pf her father. I had heard about this book previously only in reference to the Broadway hit musical that opened in 2013, but I didn’t know anything about the book itself. I highly recommend giving this a read, even if you aren’t being forced to by a professor.

My Rating: 5 Stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.12 Stars

Other titles read for class this month:
Titus Andronicus, “Venus and Adonis,” and “Lucrece” by William Shakespeare
The Iliad and The Odyssey (just parts of them) by Homer

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Stories of the Month: August 2017

Movies

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates (2016)

Image result for mike and dave need wedding dates
Photo from Imdb

Starring: Zac Efron, Adam Devine, Anna Kendrick, and Aubrey Plaza

For some reason, I always cave and watch the super lame Zefron movies. What can I say? I like me some Zefron. This movie was lame to about the level I would have expected, but I laughed a lot more than I expected to. There were so many cringe moments where I was like whyyyy am I wasting my time here, but also some moments that were so stupid I couldn’t help but find them kind of hilarious. Zefron and Adam Devine were great together and, while I hated the girls’ characters, I think the writing was actually surprisingly good enough to make them somewhat likable by the end of the film. Somehow, the characters had more depth than this genre usually allows and that definitely helped make the viewing experience more enjoyable. Overall a decent choice by me for a lazy summer Thursday night.

Grade: C+
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 35% Continue reading “Stories of the Month: August 2017”

Stories of the Month: July 2017

Movies

Photo from imdb.com

10 Things I Hate About You (1999)

This one is a film I felt like I HAD to watch. I think it’s been on Netflix for quite a while, but I finally got around to it this month. I had never seen this late 90’s classic even though pretty much everyone my age has and I wanted to see what all the hype was about. Waling away from this movie, I’m no bigger a fan of Julia Stiles (I think she’s so-so as an actress, maybe that’s just because of the roles I’ve seen her in) and I feel a lot sadder about the loss of talent the Heath Leger’s passing left in the world. I like stuff from the 90’s, yeah it’s not as great as the Golden Age of Hollywood or the amazing effects films can use today, but 90’s movies feel so cozy and relaxing to watch. You walk away with that warm fuzzy feeling that only nostalgia can give, and I love it. So overall, I thought this was a cute film, I get why everyone loves it and talks about it even to this day!
My Grade: A Continue reading “Stories of the Month: July 2017”

Stories of the Month: June 2017

Movies

Baywatch (2017)Image result for baywatch movie poster

I went into this movie knowing it was going to be pretty lame. I was expecting to laugh at some dumb humor, and that happened. There was a story-line that they went through with the Flocka and the criminals behind it, but it was done sloppily in between cheap genital jokes and every pretty boy pop culture reference that could be hurled at Zac Efron’s character. I liked that there was a story, and that Efron’s character was questioning why lifeguards should get involved with criminals. Did I laugh? Yes, sometimes. Was I done with penis jokes after the first ten minutes? Yes. Did they keep making them anyways?
Continue reading “Stories of the Month: June 2017”