vrijdag 31 mei 2013

50 Books Challeng 2013 - # 20: The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey

Title: The Snow Child
Author: Eowyn Ivey
Story: Alaska, 1920: a brutal place to homestead, and especially tough for recent arrivals Jack and Mabel. Childless, they are drifting apart--he breaking under the weight of the work of the farm; she crumbling from loneliness and despair. In a moment of levity during the season's first snowfall, they build a child out of snow. The next morning the snow child is gone--but they glimpse a young, blonde-haired girl running through the trees. This little girl, who calls herself Faina, seems to be a child of the woods. She hunts with a red fox at her side, skims lightly across the snow, and somehow survives alone in the Alaskan wilderness. As Jack and Mabel struggle to understand this child who could have stepped from the pages of a fairy tale, they come to love her as their own daughter. But in this beautiful, violent place things are rarely as they appear, and what they eventually learn about Faina will transform all of them.
Start: may 21st 2013
End: may 31st 2013
Comment: I was really interested in this story, but I had one fear: that this was going to be a very slow paced book. It was, but not in a bad way. Not a lot of spectacular things happen, but it keeps your attention at all times. For inpatient readers it's not going to work. The setting is wonderful and can sometimes feel a little overpowering. It's an enchanting and magical story. If this wasn't recommended to me, I would probably walk passed it in the bookstore, but I'm really happy to have read this. It's a wonderful book, very sad though. You feel for the characters and that only happens when you care forthe characters. Eowyn Ivey writes as from heaven, can't wait to read more of her work. Great read, thanks Beth from goodreads for recommending it to me.
Rating: 4,5/ 5

donderdag 30 mei 2013

Top 5 Thursday: Bad Decisions in Movies

Sometmes when I'm watching a movie, I'm on the coutch screaming at the screen asking the characters why the hell they would do that. Making bad choices or decisions are often seen in horrormovies, but the once I choose are bigger. Here are the five worst decisions in movies.

5. Zombieland
It’s kind of smart that Bill Murray tried to survive the zombie apocalypse by pretending he was a zombie himself. But what’s really not such a good idea is to try and scare the trigger happy Jesse Eisenberg by pretending to be a zombie. You just signed your own dead warrant.

4. The Lost World: Jurassic Park
Off course you want to help the little T-rex, but it’s not smart to take him into your trailer with a very angry mommy looking for her young.

3. King Kong
Who brings a giant, raging gorilla to New York? That’s just asking for trouble. As much as I love gorilla's, that's just not a good idea. Just leave him on the island, where he’s happy.

2. Jurassic Park
The entire park is surrounded by an electric-fence, but there is no back-up system for when the power fails. The movie wouldn’t be excited if they did, but still.

1. Deep Blue Sea
If the sharks brain might cure Alzheimer, why the hell would you set up a totally isolated and abandoned from civilization laboratory in the middle of the ocean? I couldn’t concentrate on my work really, with hungry sharks lurking at me all the time.

They Almost Made the Top 5: The Last King of Scotland, Looper, Demolition Man

woensdag 29 mei 2013

In the Picture: The Characters from "The 40 Year Old Virgin"

I recently rewatched "The 40 Year Old Virgin" and I decided to give all the characters some individual attention.

Andy Stitzer
Played by: Steve Carell
Andy is 40 years old and still a virgin. He is involuntarily celibate. Andy lives alone and is somewhat childlike. He collects action figures and plays videogames. But Andy is a very kind, shy and loveable man.

Played by: Paul Rudd
David is Andy’s co-worker. He really wants a serious relationship, but he is still hung up on his ex-girlfriend. It’s almost disturbing.

Played by: Seth Rogen
Cal also works at SmartTech and has a perverted sense of humor. He talks about sex a lot, many forms of it.

Played by: Romany Malco
Another co-worker of Andy. He’s the only one in a serious relationship of the SmartTech group. But he’s whipped. Jay is not aloud to do anything, he’s kinda her bitch.

Played by: Catherine Keener
Trish is a storeowner across the street of Andy’s work. They hit it of immediately and Andy goes on a date with her. She is really nice and is seriously interested in Andy.

Played by: Jane Lynch
Paula is the storemanager of SmartTech. She should actually be sued for sexual harassment, because she makes sexual remarks to her colleagues all the time. She even wants to be Andy’s sexbuddy. Strange woman.

Played by: Elizabeth Banks
Beth is a woman Andy meets at a bookstore, where she works. She seems interested in Andy and she would be perfect for Andy to finally lose his virginity. But Beth’s a bit crazy.

Favorite Character: Andy Stitzer

dinsdag 28 mei 2013

Weekly Photo Challenge 2013 - Theme # 21: Breakfast

Here is this weeks challenge.

I'm not much of a breakfast person, but when I have the day off I sometimes like having something nice for breakfast. But still lunch is a better meal for me.

zondag 26 mei 2013

Movie Trailer Sunday (89)

Here are this weeks trailers.

As Cool As I Am
Description: Teenager Lucy Diamond of Great Falls, Montana, struggles with the onset of womanhood on her own, while her immature, self-centered parents, having married very young, try to recapture the youth they feel they missed.
Director: Max Mayer
Starring: Claire Danes, James Marsden, Sarah Bolger, Jeremy Sisto, Thomas Mann
Trailer: Trailer "As Cool As I Am"

Just Like A Woman
Description: Mona (Golshifte Farahani), 26, an immigrant from North Africa, runs her in-laws' mini market in Chicago. She's married to Mourad, a man who can't stand up to his authoritarian mother. Marilyn (Sienna Miller), 29, is a receptionist at a computer repair company. Her marriage with Harvey is on the ropes. The only thing in her life that makes her happy is her belly dance, a passion shared by Mona. One morning, Mona's mother-in-law is found dead in her bed. Mona realizes that she mixed the wrong dose while preparing her medicine. Realizing that she might be accused of murder, Mona runs away and flees Chicago by bus. With nothing left to lose, Mona decides to go to Santa Fe to enter a contest hoping to join a famous belly dance company.
Director: Rachid Bouchareb
Starring: Sienna Miller, Golshifte Farahani, Roschdy Zem, Chafia Boudraa
Trailer: Trailer "Just Like a Woman"

Don Jon
Description: Jon Martello (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is a strong, handsome, good old fashioned guy. His buddies call him Don Jon due to his ability to "pull" a different woman every weekend, but even the finest fling doesn't compare to the bliss he finds alone in front of the computer watching pornography. Barbara Sugarman (Scarlett Johansson) is a bright, beautiful, good old fashioned girl. Raised on romantic Hollywood movies, she's determined to find her Prince Charming and ride off into the sunset. Wrestling with good old fashioned expectations of the opposite sex, Jon and Barbara struggle against a media culture full of false fantasies to try and find true intimacy
Director: Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore, Tony Danza,
Trailer: Trailer "Don Jon"
Comment: Joseph Gordon-Levitt not only stars but he alo wrote and directed this flm. Want to see it!

We're the Miller
Description: David Burke (Jason Sudeikis) is a small-time pot dealer whose clientele includes chefs and soccer moms, but no kids�after all, he has his scruples. So what could go wrong? Plenty. Preferring to keep a low profile for obvious reasons, he learns the hard way that no good deed goes unpunished when he tries to help out some local teens and winds up getting jumped by a trio of gutter punks. Stealing his stash and his cash, they leave him in major debt to his supplier, Brad (Ed Helms). In order to wipe the slate clean�and maintain a clean bill of health�David must now become a big-time drug smuggler by bringing Brad�s latest shipment in from Mexico. Twisting the arms of his neighbors, cynical stripper Rose (Jennifer Aniston) and wannabe customer Kenny (Will Poulter), and the tatted-and-pierced streetwise teen Casey (Emma Roberts), he devises a foolproof plan. One fake wife, two pretend kids and a huge, shiny RV later, the "Millers" are headed south of the border for a Fourth of July weekend that is sure to end with a bang.
Director: Rawson Marshall Thurber
Starring: Jennifer Aniston, Jason Sudeikis, Emma Roberts, Nick Offerman, Kathryn Hahn, Will Poulter, Ed Helms
Trailer: Traler"We're the Millers"
Comment: Jenn is still hot!

Metallica Through the Never
Description: Trip (Dane DeHaan), a young roadie for Metallica, is sent on an urgent mission during the band's show. But what seems like a simple assignment turns into a surreal adventure.
Director: Nimród Antal
Starring: Dane DeHaan, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett, Robert Trujillo
Trailer: Trailer "Metallica Through the Never"

zaterdag 25 mei 2013

In My Mailbox (98)

nine postcards this week and very happy about all of them. The first on came from Westlan, Netherlands. What a cute hedgehog! The sender is also a very creative woman.

Sent: may 20th 2013
Received: may 21st 2013
Distance: 153 km (95 miles)
Travel Time: 1 day

From Vancouver, Canada I received this adorable litte bear. It's like he's waving at me. I someday want to visit Vacouver.

Sent: may 16th 2013
Received: may 21st 2013
Distance: 7,869 km (4,890 miles)
Travel Time: 5 days

I'm not much a coffee drinker, so this tea postcard from  Gomel, Belarus makes me smile. The sender wrote some beatiful words on the back.

Sent: may 14th 2013
Received: may 23rd 2013
Distance: 1,720 km (1,069 miles)
Travel Time: 9 days

Another sweet hedgehog, this time from Wuppertal, Germany.

Sent: may 20th 2013
Received: may 23rd 2013
Distance: 83 km (52 miles)
Travel Time: 3 days

This wonderful lion postcard came from Minsk, Belarus.

Sent: may 13th 2013
Received: may 23rd 2013
Distance: 1,486 km (923 miles)
Travel Time: 10 days

From Boskoop, Netherlands I got these three sweet puppies. I could jut take 'em all home. The senders forfathers actually came from a city close to mine.

Sent: may 21st 2013
Received: may 23rd 2013
Distance: 133 km (83 miles)
Travel Time: 2 days

A monkey postcard! It's from Enkhuizen, Netherlands. From how she wrote, the sender seemed like a really nice woman with a big heart.

Sent: may 20th 2013
Received: may 23rd 2013
Distance: 174 km (108 miles)
Travel Time: 3 days

My favorite postcard of the week came from Plauen, Germany. I love this card!

Sent: may 21st 2013
Received: my 24t 2013
Distance: 439 km (273 miles)
Travel Time: 3 days

And last a card from Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia. This card was jus recently released because the lighthouse is als new.

Sent: may 15th 2013 Received: may 25th 2013
Distance: 10,860 km (6,748 miles) br /> Travel Time: 10 days

Thanks Gerrit, Joyce, Olga, Antje, Dasha, Joke, Beppie, Carolin and Charlie for your wonderful postcards this week!

Me & 3 Catherine Keener Movies

I announced it earlier this week, a new movie item. The first one is with three movies starring Catherine Keener, a fantastic actress that I think deserves more credit.

The 40 Year-Old Virgin
Genre: Comedy
Year: 2005
Director: Judd Apatow
Cast: Steve Carell, Catherine Keener, Paul Rudd, Seth Rogen, Elizabeth Banks, Leslie Mann, Jane Lynch
Description: Goaded by his buddies, the nerdy Andy (Steve Carell) who's never "done the deed" only finds the pressure mounting when he meets a single mother.
Opinion: A great comedy with a very likeable leading man. Judd Apatow brought it with a lot of integrity though with a lot of humour. You just sympathize with Andy and we have Steve Carell to thank for that.
Favorite character: Andy Stitzer (Steve Carell)
Most memorable quote: “I’m a virgin. I always have been” –Andy-
Best scene: The scene where Andy gets his chest hair waxed.

Where the Wild Things Are
Genre: Adventure/ Drama/ Fantasy
Year: 2009
Director: Spike Jonze
Cast: Max Records, Catherine Keener, Mark Ruffalo, James Gandolfini, Chris Cooper, Catherine O’Hara, Paul Dano, Forest Whitaker Description: Max (Max Records) is a disobedient little boy sent to bed without his supper, creates his own world--a forest inhabited by ferocious wild creatures that crown Max as their ruler.
Opinion: I read it as a kid and now, as a teacher I love reading it to my children. It’s so fantastic to see it come to life, just how it was intended. Heart warming and a little tear in the end.
Favorite character: Alexander (Paul Dano)
Most memorable quote: “I have a sadness shield that keeps out all the sadness, and it’s big enough for all of us.” –Max-
Best scene: Max and the wild things are running through the woods and stop on the edge of a cliff ans start howling like wolves. I just wish I was there with them.

Into the Wild
Genre: Drama
Year: 2007
Ditector: Sean Penn
Cast: Emile Hirsch, Marcia Gay Harden, Catherine Keener, William Hurt, Vince Vaughn, Jena Malone, Kristen Stewart, Hal Holbrook, Zach Galifianakis
Description: After graduating from Emory University, top student and athlete Christopher McCandless (Emile Hirsch) abandons his possessions, gives his entire $24,000 savings account to charity and hitchhikes to Alaska to live in the wilderness. Along the way, Christopher encounters a series of characters that shape his life.
Opinion: It’s a wonderful movie, an amazing true story and a great journey. Emile Hirsch hives away a great performance, but I should also credit Hal Holbrook and Catherine Keener for their solid supporting roles. Beautifully filmed and a brilliant soundtrack.
Favorite character: Ron Franz (Hal Holbrook)
Most memorable quote: “The freedom and simple beauty is too good to pass up’ –Christopher McCandles-
Best scene: Chris tells Ron he’s a stubborn old man who just sits on his ass. Ron gets up and climbs the hill with Chris.

Favorite of the 3: “Into the Wild”

donderdag 23 mei 2013

Top 5 Thursday: Naomi Watts Movies

Somehow I realized just now that I didn't do a Top 5 Thursday last week. Well, here's one again. I decided to share with you my five favorite movies of my all-time favorite actress Naomi Watts. Now I have finally seen “The Impossible” I can make this list. Naomi Watts has been my favorite actress ever since I saw her in “21 Grams”. I don’t think many people share this favorite, but she captivates me every single time. She is so convincing and I think she is absolutely fantastic. Here are my favorites.

5. The Painted Veil
This movie didn’t make it to theatres here in the Netherlands, which proves again what a strange country this is. When I saw the trailer for the first time, I just had to see it. So when I saw the DVD in the store I just had to have it. Wonderful movie that not a lot of people know about.

4. The Impossible
I saw it recently for the first time. I was so ashamed, as a Naomi Watts fan, that I hadn’t seen it yet. But I was touched by this movie. This might even be Naomi’s best performance so far. Her second Academy Award nomination.

3. Mulholland Drive
This is one of those mindf*** movies. You think you understand it, but than you don’t and you’re surrounded by all sorts of weird characters. Mastermind David Lynch made a fantastic film and I thank him for letting Naomi star in it.

2. King Kong
Although Kong is the star of this film, I loved Naomi in it. The scenes with the two of them in it are so beautiful. This movie blew my mind.

1. 21 Grams
Like I said in my intro, this movie introduced me to Naomi Watts. This also got Naomi her first Academy Award nomination (it went to my other favorite Charlize Theron). After seeing her in “21 Grams” I knew I wanted to see everything she was in.

They Almost Made the Top 5: Eastern Promises, The Ring, I Heart Huckabees, Fair Game, J. Edgar

woensdag 22 mei 2013

Quotables: "Taxi Driver"

One of the best movies ever made. Recently rewatched it, after way too long. But because it's such an intense movie, you can't just watch it at any time. You really have to pick the right moment to watch "Taxi Driver". And I would love to share some of the great quotes from this film with you.

Travis Bickle: The idea had been growing in my brain for some time: TRUE force. All the king's men cannot put it back together again.

Travis Bickle: I think someone should just take this city and just... just flush it down the fuckin' toilet.

Travis Bickle: The days go on and on... they don't end. All my life needed was a sense of someplace to go. I don't believe that one should devote his life to morbid self-attention, I believe that one should become a person like other people.

Travis Bickle: Loneliness has followed me my whole life. Everywhere. In bars, in cars, sidewalks, stores, everywhere. There's no escape. I'm God's lonely man... June 8th. My life has taken another turn again. The days can go on with regularity over and over, one day indistinguishable from the next. A long continuous chain. Then suddenly, there is a change.

Travis Bickle: Now I see this clearly. My whole life is pointed in one direction. There never has been a choice for me.

Betsy: Taking me to a place like this is about as exciting as saying to me "Let's fuck."

Travis Bickle: I realize now how much she's just like the others, cold and distant, and many people are like that, women for sure, they're like a union.

Travis Bickle: You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me? Then who the hell else are you talking... you talking to me? Well I'm the only one here. Who the fuck do you think you're talking to? Oh yeah? OK.

dinsdag 21 mei 2013

Weekly Photo Challenge 2013 - Theme # 20: Feet

Here is this weeks theme.

I have very small feet for my length, so I'm no keen on photographing my own feet. But with shoes on it's not that big of a deal. I was standing over a small stream in a zoo.

maandag 20 mei 2013

50 Books Challenge 2013 - # 18: The Child Thief by Brom

Title: The Child Thief
Author: Brom
Story: Fourteen-year-old Nick would have been murdered by the drug dealers preying on his family had Peter not saved him. Now the irresistibly charismatic wild boy wants Nick to follow him to a secret place of great adventure, where magic is alive and you never grow old. Even though he is wary of Peter's crazy talk of faeries and monsters, Nick agrees. After all, New York City is no longer safe for him, and what more could he possibly lose?
Start: May 10th 2013
End: may 20th 2013
Comment: Peter Pan for grown-ups. I never liked Peter Pan as a kid, so I was a bit skeptical about this. When I started reading, I could't wait to see what would happen next. I was sucked into the story pretty quickly. But not for very long. It's a big book, but it became a struggle for me to finish it. The story is very original and dark but it's also a lot more violent then I expected it to be. Not for sensitive souls and I think it was unnecessary. I loved the illustrations in the book, really nice. As far as the character go, I couldn't really realte to any of them. All I know is that Peter creeped me out. He relates to the suffering of lost, abused, and broken children, but is incapable of truly caring about them. Although he tries to do good, for me he's more of a guy that will haunt my dreams. And that drawing of him of the cover doesn't help. The book met my expectations, because I didn't expect much. At first I thought it was going to be great and I wanted to like this book, but it was just a little bit too long to keep my attention. Rating: 2/ 5

Movie Moments: Monty Python's The Meaning of Life

If anyone knows humor, it’s the British. And most specifically the gang of Monty Python. In this movie they try to get the answer to what’s the meaning of life. Off course in their own silly way.

Moment # 1: The Crimson Permanent Assurance
We meet the employees of an assurance company, who are not treated that well. After one of them gets fired, they decide to fight back.

Moment # 2: The machine that goes “Ping”
A woman is about to deliver a baby and two doctors think the delivery room looks a little empty. They decided to fill it with all sorts of machines, including the machine that goes “Ping”, what happens to be the most expensive machine in the entire hospital. We’re not quite sure what it does, besides go “Ping”.

Moment # 3: Every sperm is sacred
A father of many is trying to explain the Catholic church to his children, with a musical number.

Moment # 4: Sex education
A schoolteacher is giving sex education, by actually having sex with his wife in front of his students. His class isn’t quite as interested as you would think.

Moment # 5: Live organ transplantation
Two shady guys ring a doorbell. They ask the man who answers for his liver, but he doesn’t want to donate it. So they start operating him, while he’s still awake. His wife walks in and doesn’t think anything abnormal is going on, while her husband is still being butchered. The wife and one of the so called doctors have a very normal conversation.

Moment # 6: Mr. Creosote
An extremely fat man, named Mr. Creosote, walks into a restaurant. He asks for a bucket because he has to throw up. Which he does, multiple times and he still eats and orders food. When he’s done eating, the waiter offers him a very thin chocolate. Mr.Creosote declines because he’s stuffed, but after insisting he eats it anyway. Then he explodes.

Moment # 7: Death
Death knocks on a door and a married couple opens. They invite Death in, while they are having diner with some American friends. They start a conversation, when Death tries to explain to them that he’s coming for them. One of the guests wonders how they can all die at the same time and Death point at the salmon mousse.

Favorite Moment: Moment # 5: Live organ transplantation