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shabbating

shabbating

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Hiya, I am 22 yrs of age and my name is shabbating. I'm from Coventry and I am currently at university, I enjoy spending my time watching movies at the cinema so you'll see a lot of film reviews from me :) I'm new at this so be nice ;)

Reviews written

since 22/01/2010

107

24 - Series 4 - Complete (DVD) 24/04/2014

Kiefer is the man.

24 - Series 4 - Complete (DVD) *DVD extras not reviewed – film only review* Plot: The fourth season of 24 sees Erin Driscoll (Alberta Watson) take charge of CTU (Counter Terrorist Unit). Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) is now working for Secretary of Defence James Heller (William Devane) and dating his daughter Audrey Raines (Kim Raver). Day 4 sees multiple terror threats hit the US involving kidnapping, nuclear meltdown and missiles. Review: Season 4 of 24 sees the biggest overhaul of personnel since the beginning of the show. The show starts with no Bauer, no Almeida, no Dessler, nothing familiar. It is a brave move for a successful show, to change everything that the audience knows and replace it with new characters. I wasn’t totally sure at the start of the season, too much new-ness for me but it comes good. Alberta Watson who plays Erin Driscoll is pretty awful; she is very unconvincing in the dramatic moments. There is a minor plotline involving the character and her daughter which seems irrelevant but there is a reason behind everything on 24. Watson seems bored most of the time and really doesn’t bring her A-game. I’m also not a fan of Curtis Manning, played by Roger Cross but I’m in the minority with most 24 fans liking him. Manning has basically replaced Jack Bauer at CTU, leading field operations. The character is fairly vanilla, nothing particularly interesting about him which doesn’t give Cross anything to play with. The writers try to give him some character, making him a conquest of ...

Once Upon a Time Season 2 (DVD) 11/04/2014

Another fantasy hit.

Once Upon a Time Season 2 (DVD) *DVD extras not reviewed – film only review* Plot: After the events of season one, the curse is broken in Storybrooke and the fairy tale characters remember their true identities. Things can’t be happy for long in Storybrooke though as some of the group get sucked through a portal into the Enchanted Forest. Created by Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis (Lost). Review: The second season of Once Upon a Time continues to expand the cast of fairy tale characters whilst giving us a look at more of the backstory of the main players. With Emma and co. being stranded in the Enchanted Forest it gives the show another land to explore, which is a good move. Anyone who has seen the show knows that outside of Storybrooke, the computer generated landscapes are a bit lame but if you’ve made it this far then you probably don’t care. I kind of just accept that the creators are trying something pretty inventive for TV and also pretty tough to do convincingly on a TV budget. In my review of the first season, I said that the Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla) and Rumpelstiltskin (Robert Carlyle) were the standouts. In the second season it is the Evil Queen that takes centre stage. Lana Parrilla is brilliant as the conniving Evil Queen; the role is tougher in this season as the Queen and Regina become different characters. Regina, the Queen’s name in Storybrooke, softens as the season progresses and although I think they soften her a bit too much, Parrilla’s portrayal of the two distinct characters ...

10 Best-looking Celebrities 04/04/2014

10 Beautiful Women.

10 Best-looking Celebrities This is my list of the top ten beautiful women in the world; it consists of actresses, models and one singer. Obviously it is my opinion and everyone’s idea of beauty is totally different but hopefully you’ll enjoy the read. Those who nearly made the list (in no particular order): Lana Parrilla, Megan Ory, Emily VanCamp, Kim Raver, Eugenie Bouchard, Jessica Stroup, Eliza Dushku, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Kelly Brook, Doutzen Kroes, Adriana Lima, Minka Kelly, Scarlett Johansson, Gisele Bundchen 10. Behati Prinsloo (Supermodel) Behati can currently be seen modelling for Next and Victoria’s Secret, amongst other brands. Prinsloo is engaged to Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine, who is the sexiest man alive, apparently. I love Behati’s style and attitude, she seems incredibly laid back. She is Namibian meaning she has an awesome accent, I could listen to her talk forever. Behati is beautiful but is quirky enough to be memorable. 9. Candice Swanepoel (Supermodel) Another Victoria’s Secret Angel (not to be predictable), Candice has more of a swimsuit look than a high fashion look but she isn’t exactly doing badly for herself. Swanepoel has an awesome name, body and accent (she’s South African). Expect to see a lot of her in the next few years; she is on the up and up. 8. Eva Longoria (Actress) The former Desperate Housewives star has been a little quiet on the old acting front but she still looks as good as ever. Longoria seems to be busy doing adverts for cat food and ice ...

24 - Series 3 - Complete (DVD) 19/03/2014

Another brilliant season.

24 - Series 3 - Complete (DVD) *DVD extras not reviewed – film only review* Plot: Three years have passed since season two of 24. CTU (Counter Terrorist Unit) receive a threat that a Mexican drug lord will release a deadly virus unless his brother is released from prison. Meanwhile, President Palmer is attempting to get re-elected for a second term. Review: If you’ve read my reviews of the first two seasons of 24 then you’ll know what it is all about. For those of you who haven’t heard of 24 (anyone?), it is a spy thriller which plays out the actions of one day in real time. Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) is the lead agent in the field and risks his life to subvert acts of terrorism. The biggest change for season three of 24 is the fact that Kim Bauer (Elisha Cuthbert) is now a member of CTU. It is quite a good move in order to keep the character in the series, there are only so many times the writers can put Kim in danger as a private citizen without it getting a little tiresome. I’m not sure when Kim became a computer whizz but I’ll go with it. There are some new faces in the CTU group. Star Trek’s Zachary Quinto puts in a good performance as Adam Kaufman. It is only a relatively small role but he puts some character into it and makes it more memorable. I am not such a big fan of Chloe, played by Mary Lynn Rajskub; the character has a bit of a “personality disorder” and is very blunt. It seems like she is almost supposed to be the comic relief but she is just annoying. It is half down to the ...

24 - Series 2 - Complete (DVD) 15/03/2014

Jack's back for round 2!

24 - Series 2 - Complete (DVD) *DVD extras not reviewed – film only review* Plot: A year after the events of season one, Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) is out of CTU and estranged from his daughter Kim (Elisha Cuthbert). A threat of a nuclear attack on Los Angeles brings Jack back into the action to try and save the day once again. Review: Skipping forward a year in time is a good set up for the second season of 24, it leaves enough time for things to change but the effects of the first season can still be seen on the characters. Jack Bauer is clearly still suffering as he has a beard in the season opener, is there a clearer sign of heartache on a TV show than an overgrown beard? It doesn’t take long for Jack to be brought back into the CTU fold, although he is still a little bit damaged. Bauer continues to be the best character in the show by quite a way and is seemingly 100% better than the next best federal agent. Jack’s daughter Kim is an au pair for the Matheson family, sounds like a safe enough job but nothing with the Bauer family is straightforward. I don’t want to ruin what happens with her but there is a long side plot involving Kim which is rather drawn out and not that interesting for the first 5-6 hours. I really liked Cuthbert in the first season so it was a shame that her storyline in the second season wasn’t quite as strong. A year after the first season, David Palmer (Dennis Haysbert) is now President of the USA. Palmer spends most of the season trying to work out who is working with ...

24 - Series 1 - Complete (Box Set) (DVD) 09/03/2014

Tick Tock Tick Tock.

24 - Series 1 - Complete (Box Set) (DVD) *DVD extras not reviewed – film only review* Plot: Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) is called in as head of the Counter Terrorism Unit after a threat is made on Senator David Palmer’s (Dennis Haysbert) life. Bauer also has to worry about his daughter Kim (Elisha Cuthbert) who is missing after sneaking out of the house. Created by Robert Cochran and Joel Surnow (La Femme Nikita). Review: I’m probably the last person in the world to get into 24, prompted by the new season starting in the Spring I finally kick started my binge watching. The unique thing about 24 is that is plays out in real time, there are 24 episodes which show the events of a single (hectic) day. If done poorly the show could drag badly, but luckily the writers have enough threads to keep it exciting without it being too complex to follow. At times it seems like scenes are irrelevant but then something happens to make it matter to the plot. Kiefer Sutherland (The Lost Boys) is bad ass government agent Jack Bauer. In the early episodes I felt he was a little over the top but as I got more engrossed in the show, his acting matched the intensity of the events unfolding on screen. The script writing didn’t help Sutherland early on but it got tighter as the season went on. Sutherland has shown time and time again that he is a quality actor and he is no different in 24 once it gets going. Bauer has a wife and daughter who both get dragged into the chaos of the day. Elisha Cuthbert (The Girl Next Door) is ...

Revenge Season 1 (DVD) 28/01/2014

Who knew Revenge was this enjoyable?!?

Revenge Season 1 (DVD) *DVD extras not reviewed - film only review* Plot: Amanda Clarke (Emily VanCamp) returns to the Hamptons posing as a socialite, Emily Thorne, in order to exact revenge on the Grayson's, who were responsible for her father's imprisonment. Created by Mike Kelley Review: The first season of Revenge had mostly standalone episodes, called 'takedown' episodes, making it easy to watch without having to think too hard. In most episodes, Emily takes down someone who played a part in her father being framed as a terrorist. Her plans for the Grayson's are more long term but there are plenty of people to exact revenge on in the meantime. Whilst I did enjoy the episodes, it became a little silly when new characters were introduced just to be taken within the hour, every single week. This is something the writers have rectified in future seasons but it was quite a good way to start the show, making it accessible to new viewers. Emily VanCamp (Brothers & Sisters) is a strong lead as the revenge seeking Amanda Clarke/Emily Thorne. She essentially plays two different characters, flipping between the scheming revenge seeker and the sweet rich girl at will. Although there is a lot of scene time for the rest of the ensemble, the success of Revenge hinges on VanCamp's performance. Without a decent Emily the show wouldn't work, luckily she is good. Madeleine Stowe (We Were Soldiers) steals many a scene as the matriarch of the Grayson family, Victoria. You shouldn't really root for Victoria, ...

12 Years A Slave (DVD) 23/01/2014

Deserved praise for 12 Years a Slave

12 Years A Slave (DVD) Plot: Solomon Northup, a free black man from New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Directed by Steve McQueen (Shame), written by John Ridley (Three Kings). Based on ‘Twelve Years a Slave’ by Solomon Northup. Review: Everyone has heard the hype surrounding this movie; it is nominated for 9 Academy Awards and has won the Golden Globe for best film (drama) among many other awards. The subject matter makes it perfect for these kinds of ceremonies but the quality of the production and the outstanding cast makes 12 Years a Slave a truly memorable film no matter who you are. This is the first film I have seen by director Steve McQueen and I was impressed by his style. His composition was strong, going for some alternate angles and shots without it seeming too artsy and try-hard. The team behind the camera deserve the same recognition that the actors are getting as 12 Years a Slave is extremely well made. The cinematography is beautiful; it is a good film just to look at. The main star of the film is Chiwetel Ejiofor (American Gangster), who puts in a moving performance as Solomon Northup. The film starts with Northup as a slave and through flashbacks we see his regular life, as a free man, and how he ended up becoming a slave. It is an incredible story but it takes a quality actor to bring it to life and Ejiofor has the talents to make you feel the story, not just watch it. You see shots of Ejiofor throughout the movie, which aren’t accompanied by words but they don’t ...

Once Upon a Time - Series 1 (DVD) 21/11/2013

Fairy tales are real!

Once Upon a Time - Series 1 (DVD) *DVD Extras not reviewed – film only review* Plot: Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison) is found by the child she gave up for adoption as a baby, Henry (Jared Gilmore), and took to Storybrooke. It is a town unlike any other; it is full of fairy tale characters who don’t know who they are. Review: Once Upon a Time started three years ago, when fairy tales were making somewhat of a comeback on both the small and big screens. Everyone is familiar with the characters in Once Upon a Time (OUAT) and that is why it was instantly so popular. Everyone knows Snow White, the Evil Queen and the other characters so the audience are immediately invested in the show and what happens. That existing knowledge also means that the show can get right into the action. Throughout the first season, the show is essentially split in two as we watch what is happening in Storybrooke as well as seeing the characters previous life as a fairy tale character. It is an interesting way to approach the show and one that really works. A lot of what happens is quite predictable for anyone over the age of 15 but there were a few shock twists that show the writers are willing to shake the show up every now and then. The stars of the show for me are Lana Parrilla as Regina Mills/Evil Queen and Robert Carlyle as Mr Gold/Rumpelstiltskin. They both are aware of their prior lives unlike the rest of Storybrooke and they portray their multiple personalities brilliantly. Carlyle’s Rumpelstiltskin accent is a little iffy, ...

Scandal Season 1 (DVD) 08/11/2013

Scandalous.

Scandal Season 1 (DVD) Plot: Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington) is a former White House employee who left to set up her own business to help people get out of tough situations. Review: Scandal is one of the most addictive shows on television, it is one of those shows that hits you with something at the end of an episode to get you to watch the next one and it works. It’s full of action despite being a political drama. I know most people turn off when hearing the word ‘politics’ but it’s not complicated/boring politics it’s all about scandals with a political backdrop. The synopsis of the show is good; fixers are also fascinating in TV land. A lot of the episodes get a bit ridiculous as Olivia Pope and co. go about their business and fixing people’s problems. If you watch this show believing that fixers can do anything and get away with it, you will love it. Don’t be cynical about the ridiculousness of it all, the show was created by Shonda Rhymes after all, who also brought us Grey’s Anatomy. The first season only had seven episodes in it and it focussed on introducing the characters as well as the link between Olivia Pope and President Grant. There is a lot of fast talking in Scandal, I don’t think it is quite as clever as the writers think it is but it is good to watch. It veers towards being preachy at times but it’s not as bad as The Newsroom (season one) in that regard. Kerry Washington is brilliant as Olivia Pope, to be fair she is brilliant in pretty much everything she does (she was ...

Planes (DVD) 16/10/2013

It's Cars with Wings.

Planes (DVD) *Film only review – DVD extras not reviewed* Plot: Dusty, a crop-dusting plane, dreams of being a racer despite having a fear of heights. His friends try to convince him that he can’t compete with the professional racers but Dusty doesn’t give up on his dream. Directed by Klay Hall (Tinker Bell and the Lost Treasure), written by John Lasseter (Toy Story), Klay Hall and Jeffrey M Howard (Tinker Bell). Review: Planes was originally meant to be a straight to DVD special and you can kind of see why. It is clear that not as much time has been spent on Planes as was Cars, the backgrounds are mostly not as rich and intricate as in the Cars movies. Planes follows the story of Cars very closely, the characters are so similar as well. Cars has done so well merchandise wise for Disney that it isn’t a surprise they would try and push a similar concept onto us. There aren’t many films in the Disneyverse for boys so Planes is perfect for them (and me...) I really enjoyed Planes, if you forget the similarities to Cars and that it is a money making exercise then you will enjoy it too. I know most people aren’t that keen on Cars compared to other Pixar movies, so you may be sceptical of a film that is a lesser version of that movie. I’m a bit different/weird in that I actually love Cars so I also loved Planes, not as much but it is still a movie I would watch repeatedly. It is a kid’s movie so the plot isn’t going to blow your brains, it is fairly predictable but still enjoyable and it ...

The Heat (DVD) 06/10/2013

Not that hot.

The Heat (DVD) *DVD extras not reviewed – film only review* Plot: Uptight FBI agent Ashburn (Sandra Bullock) has to work with unconventional cop Mullins (Melissa McCarthy) in the hunt for a notorious drug dealer. The two officers’ different styles of law enforcement clash time and time again in this comedy. Directed by Paul Feig (Bridesmaids) and written by Katie Dippold (Parks and Recreation). Review: The Heat hit the headlines before its release for the wrong reasons with a poorly photo shopped poster that made Melissa McCarthy unrecognisable. I was hoping that the actual movie would be better than the poster but I left feeling disappointed. I am probably the only person on the planet who hasn’t seen Bridesmaids but I have heard the hype and thought that having the same director and McCarthy on board would have good results. The film basically relies on viewers finding Melissa McCarthy (Mike & Molly) funny, no matter what she does. If you’re looking for actual funniness, like I was, then you will be disappointed by The Heat. The movie is quite odd, the drama and comedy are not balanced and the transitions are not exactly seamless. It is like a poor man’s CSI and then it switches it up and attempts to be funny, which means having McCarthy shout something quite obscene. Given the writer is involved in one of my favourite comedies, Parks & Rec, I thought she would have come up with something better than this. Sandra Bullock (Speed) does her best in a role that doesn’t provide many ...

Only God Forgives (DVD) 03/10/2013

I can't forgive this mess.

Only God Forgives (DVD) *Film only review – DVD extras not reviewed* Plot: Julian (Ryan Gosling) is compelled by his mother to find the man who killed his brother Billy (Tom Burke) and get revenge. Review: In summary: this is a weird movie. The trailer looked pretty and if a film has good cinematography then I’m there. The trailer showed little plot though, which I thought was a teaser but it turns out there just isn’t much to it. The plot is stated at the start of the review and as you can see it isn’t a particularly long tale. This movie dragged out the thin plot for an hour and a half, which was too long. It could have fit into an episode of CSI to be honest, that would have been preferable. It kept cutting to karaoke scenes in which the audience looked bored stiff, kind of a reflection of how the audience looked in the cinema. I haven’t seen Drive but I have heard the rave reviews so seeing the same director and lead actor do a movie together again pushed up my expectations for Only God Forgives. If you Google this movie you will get some 5 star reviews and a lot of 1 star reviews, I cannot understand why anyone would give this 5 stars. Yes it is stylish but there is nothing going on, it is full of silence which I wouldn’t mind if there was some point to it but it just came across as filler. Kristen Scott Thomas was great as the overbearing mother figure; she was the standout performer in the movie. To be fair, she was the only member of the cast with a decent script to go off. Ryan ...

The Wolverine 11/09/2013

Can we go back to the original X-Men?

The Wolverine *Film only review - DVD extras not reviewed* Plot: Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) is asked to go to Japan to say goodbye to an old friend. Things aren’t as straightforward as they first seemed however and Wolverine becomes embroiled in a life or death battle. Directed by James Mangold (Walk the Line) and written by Mark Bomback (Total Recall) and Scott Frank (Minority Report). Review: In my opinion, the Wolverine Origins movie was nowhere near as good as the X-Men movies (ignore X-Men 3 which was awful). Having all the mutants together makes for a better movie than just having the focus on one, as good as Hugh Jackman is as Wolverine. The trailer for The Wolverine peaked my interest however as it did look a lot better than the slow moving Origins film. So I watched it and I wasn’t totally disappointed. The Wolverine takes place after the X-Men movies (the original trilogy), which means they don’t mess up with history as they did in the first film. The plot is decent fare, you can see where it is going a mile off but it is still enjoyable. Having Wolverine sulk around about the death of Jean Gray was a good move as it brought Famke Janssen back in dream sequences. Everybody loves a bit of Famke right? It reminded me of the original movies which was a good and bad thing as you then start to miss Prof. X etc. There were a few plot holes which were annoying, they were big ones as well. I guess the writers think the audience won’t notice but some just hit you in the face. They ...

Justified - Series 1 (DVD) 22/08/2013

Buying this DVD is Justified

Justified - Series 1 (DVD) *DVD extras not reviewed – film only review* Synopsis: After getting a little trigger happy in public, Deputy U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) is relocated from Miami to Harlan County in Kentucky. Harlan is Givens’ childhood town and his return brings back old rivalries and memories. Based on the characters created by Elmore Leonard. Review: Justified is not hyped up as much as shows such as Breaking Bad or Games of Thrones but it is certainly one of the best shows on television. I’ve always been a fan of shows about U.S. Marshals, as they can do whatever they want (on TV anyway). This brings an element of unpredictability that you don’t get in CSI-type shows that rarely break out of their well-worked formula. The first episode of Justified hits the high notes, setting out the characters roles and bringing the action full force. The first season isn’t as intricate as future seasons but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It doesn’t swing so far as to have totally standalone episodes, there are threads throughout but you can also miss an episode without being totally confused. It is a good way to kick off a series, not scaring you off with intricacy. Harlan County is old country; if you’re a fan of southern American accents then you will love this show. It’s a nice change to have a show that isn’t full of high tech gadgets; it is a back to basics gritty law enforcement show. Timothy Olyphant (Hitman) is perfectly cast as the laid back Raylan Givens. I ...
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