Thursday, January 28, 2010

It's Complicated

That is what we all want to be: Forever 21. This year I'm turning 22! GOSH. The last time I had a double-digit as my age was when I was 11 =(

It is so fun to meet up with this mix of band peeps, and listening to Rayna talk about how she nearly starved to death in Norway (S$20 for a McDonald's meal!) and how she nearly got mugged by a gypsy who keeps trying to kiss her :X

These marvelous-looking waffle-ice cream from Marvelous Cream isn't as marvelous as it looks (I used the word 3 times!). But still, my Belgium black chocolate with banana tasted not too bad.

Back in school, it was Mark Cenite Day a.k.a. Dress All in Black Day!
We really look like some backstage crew, but it's cool!! We came up with this theme because our lecturer, Mark Cenite (the one in blond hair on the extreme right, 2nd row) likes to wear black outfits to lectures.

Happy (22nd) Birthday to Ser Kun and Geraldine!
With that last photo, we combined it with sending Fungi off to Korea at Changi Airport T3.

Popeye's @ T3! I know I've said it before but I'll say it again: one of my fave fast food restaurants in Singapore~

I don't know what happened but SzeRn's face was covered/smacked by Fungi. But anyway, as of now, Fungi would've reached Korea. Take care over there!

Okay, time for movie reviews!

Now, for a 2009 movie that I only got to watch recently, An Education. It will be talked about again come Oscar season.
I give the movie:

Just like the critically-acclaimed The Hurt Locker, this film was released in 2009 when Oscar buzz didn't really start yet, and An Education just faded off in the memories of mainstream audiences. But one gleaming diamond in the rough did remain - and it was the exceptional performance by lead actress Carey Mulligan.

Set in England, Mulligan stars as Jenny, a 16-year-old student who aspires to be admitted to Oxford. But her strict and no-nonsense upbringing was turned upside down when she meets an older man (a suave Peter Sarsgaard) as he cajoles her into joining him in wild trips to Paris, and leading her into a world where she'd learn things not necessarily taught in the confines of a college.

Besides a brilliant supporting cast which includes Emma Thompson, Dominic Cooper and Alfred Molina, the natural dialogue from a strong screenplay by author Nick Hornby (of About a Boy) allows us to view the world widening before Jenny's eyes.

FINAL SAY: Although Oscars usually favour the hot-favourites in major categories, I'm hoping they break the convention this year and award the Best Actress to Carey Mulligan, instead of a mainstream win by Sandra Bullock (I still heart you, Bullock). Justice would be done, like how Halle Berry was celebrated for Monster's Ball, and Marion Cotillard for La Vie En Rose.

Next, the disappointing Daybreakers.
I give the film:

For a movie with a solid trailer, it is too bad that an A-grade looking premise (and actors) can become B-grade because of the ridiculous narrative. Daybreakers is the kind of film whereby audiences are kept wound in suspense at the beginning (trust me, it is scary) until the plot twists come in and it completely drops all logic - and the audience's interest - along the way.

In a future where most humans have mutated into vampires, an organisation who harvests human blood for the population's consumption is facing a severe shortage. Vampire Edward (Ethan Hawke) - don't ask me about the name-coincidence - is a scientist who researches on an alternative blood source so that the endangered species (us, humans) will not face extinction. Obviously, Edward sides with mankind, and when he stumbles upon a group of them, he helps them escape the vampires, while at the same time discovering a 'cure' for transforming back into a human-being.


I shall not provide any spoilers here, but obviously, there is a lot going on. The movie starts off strongly and rather terrifyingly. Do prepare to grab onto something - or someone - if you don't wish to jump out of your seat. The first 'cure' for vampire-ism will intrigue you, but subsequently when the second 'cure' is discovered...

...everything falls apart. The film degrades into a bloody rampage of biting and blood-squirting, and before you know it, a bat darts across the screen (another unnecessary scare) and the credits roll, and you're like, "huh?"

FINAL SAY: The movie does address some powerful themes on humanity with a few strong sequences thrown into the mix, but even the presence of Ethan Hawke, Sam Neil and Willem Dafoe can't stop this from degenerating into a lump of bloody mess.

Now for the rom-com for the older generation, It's Complicated.
I give the movie:

This movie is about two 50-year-olds canoodling each other again after a decade of divorcing one another. Such a first impression usually puts off many viewers - or to put it in a nicer way, there is only a certain targeted demographic for this film. Let's just hope this movie was at least appealing to them, because for me, it was about a complicated relationship, and that's about it.

After a quick overnight affair in New York, Jane (a delightfully desperate Meryl Streep) hooks up with her ex-husband, Jake (a hilariously lusty Alec Baldwin), and they rediscover their love and concern for each other. Meanwhile back at home, an infatuation blossoms between Jane and her kitchen architect, Adam (a rather miscast Steve Martin), and you're right, things get complicated.

The film highlights Jane's lonely plights rather accurately. Writer/director Nancy Meyers (of mature chick flicks like What Women Want and Something's Gotta Give) gives her lead actress ample space to emote as a busy mother of three, dealing with a decade-old divorce. Baldwin's role was also well-written and we identify with his dilemma of leaving his current feisty wife and a hyper-active son who already depends on him.

But for a film that leads us into a territory where it concerns a touchy subject such as divorce (where three grown-up kids are embroiled in this case), I do not necessarily agree with the ending, which was honestly hastily put as well. As much as I can understand the direction in the end, Martin's underdeveloped character hurt the ultimate outcome of the story.

FINAL SAY: It does have its fair share of hilarity, and Streep does deserve her comedic award at the Golden Globes. But other than that, a weakly-written supporting cast could not lift this film to its potential aim of moving its target audience.

My second campus concert after Lala徐佳莹 is none other than the sweet-voiced and sweet-looking 梁文音 =)
Yep, I bought the album (which comes with DVD) along with many other guys who formed up at least 60% of the audience. Went with Fifi, and the two extra tix were taken by Yeewen and Jian Wei. And yes, Rachel Liang (her Mandarin name) signed the CD sleeve:

Okay, I have no idea what she signed, and the only recognisable characters are "NTU" (: And I got to shake her hand! I said to her: "你的歌声很好听." But according to Fifi, who was next in line, I actually said: "你的歌声很好吃." Erm, I don't think I said that leh!

But anyway, after listening to her singing 'live', my current favourite is:

Awww *melts* :X

Okay! Finally I'm done with this post. Hope I can post more regularly, but now there seems like there are mountains of things to do.

Take care, people!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

School Bell Ring.. Again.

School has begun. And we all looked sad. =(

...joking! It was Hoodie Day. Yep, Themed Days are back in full force!

So many things have happened. Where do I start?

Oh yeah. Fungi got the dubious honour of being my first pal to celebrate her 22nd Birthday.
Zhi-char @ Bukit Panjang. It's Fungi's birthday that we can have a rare full-attendance gathering. Geraldine is really quite Korean-fied!

Serkun's one is coming up!

First Day of School: Wrote for my first article in The Nanyang Chronicle! =)
Yep, that's my review of Sherlock Holmes for Chron.
Click here to read it online!

This KTV with Weilong, Viv and Jiams happened on the second day of school. Like, wow. But it was worth it. Chinatown $10 KTV rocks.

Went home for two nights in a row for this...
AMERICAN IDOL SEASON 9! Ace production values. Great entertainment. Fifi, I think even though we have to endure early mornings on Thursdays, Wednesday nights with Simon, Randy, Kara, Ryan and later, Ellen, will be all worth it.

Friday: skipped the first lecture of my Biz gerpe. But it was probably worth it, seeing that I went for a big-scale exhibition at the National Museum of Singapore - Quest For Immortality: The World of Ancient Egypt for a Students' Price, which was FREE!
That's a real mummy. *Shudder* It's the highlight of the exhibition.

How the inside of the coffin looks like. The ancient Egyptians are real artists.

The most famous page from The Book of the Dead.
Notice the weighing balance: on the left is the heart of the deceased, and on the right it's a feather. It is said that when the deceased reaches the Underworld, his heart is weighed against the feather. If it is heavier than the feather, it means that the deceased had sinned as a mortal, and the part-hippo-part-lion-part-crocodile creature will devour the heart. No more Eternal Life for the deceased.

Replicas of mooncakes, ricecakes (beng kuey), ang ku kuey and tu-tu kuey!

And now for the real stuff...
'Magic Wok' Thai restaurant near City Hall. LOVE the orh luak (oyster omelette)!

And now for one of my fave dessert places:
Soft serve ice cream sitting on cold ice, topped with sweet, creamy chocolate syrup. *Melts* Huiying's expression says it all.

There is a Paradise.

After those gut-busting food, it was off to a feel-good film. The Blind Side.

I give the movie:

This was the inspiring film that could. It is still doing spectacularly well at the U.S. Box Office, thanks to its uplifting true story and a strong performance by Sandra Bullock. Last year, The Blind Side famously ousted New Moon to second place as it reclaimed the top spot yet again. Which is good. I mean, who enjoys watching a deathly-pale female lusting after a deathly-pale vampire, while a ridiculous-looking werewolf watches on?

But I digress.

In this heartwarming movie, a wealthy southern family adopts an extraordinarily huge African-American kid after seeing him roaming the streets homeless one night. He quickly integrates into the family and is soon on a track to recover from a bleak and broken past.

This is a safe success story that banks on its inspired-by-a-true-story premise and of course, America's Sweetheart, Sandra Bullock. Her serious turn here as a strong-willed mother certainly deserves an Oscar nom, but a win?

That would be a slight stretch.

FINAL SAY: Occasionally funny and definitely filled with tender moments, this is a sports film with heart. Watch it for Bullock.

Alright. I'm dead tired.

Take care, people!

Monday, January 11, 2010

And so, screw you, STARS

It's back to feverish camping again.

GERPE come to me. Plus one more UE.

I forgot to buy 8Days today.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

And so, Hello New Sem

Yup, in 5 minutes time it'll be 12am and it'll be a brand new day and a brand new semester.

And to kick it off I have a seminar tomorrow morning. Why can't it be a tutorial? Then I won't have to go.

Just finished watching 宫心计 - the HK TVB mega drama about scheming concubines in the palace. Now my brain is all in a smattering of Cantonese.

First week of school - "can tuang", Ronald said. So I'm going KTV on Tuesday, and not attending the first CS lecture of the semester. Shit. The effects of peer pressure.

Okay shall end off with a quote i read in 8Days:

"You become addicted to short-termism. Like pressing the snooze button." - Hugh Grant.

Somehow this phrase just stuck. Procrastination.

Take care, people!

Friday, January 8, 2010

In Comic: Randoms Dec09 - Jan10

After ranting about the 'demise' of Wild Things, it's time to go back to normal blogging! Okay some of the photos here are grossly overdue, but nevertheless, here's a look back at some of the goings-on in comic form =)

Two of our favourite past times: Eating and Mahjong!

SPBA at the Marina Barrage. Place was boring. Company was great.

Even Vanessa's Elmo thought it was such a lifeless place.

New Year Countdown at my house with Wang whipping up a delectable Thai spread!


School is starting soon. American Idol too! Okay, random.

Take care, people!