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I watched this film knowing only that it was a film about some men trying to canoe down a river on East Coast America…however, this film brings more into your mind than light-hearted, home entertainment! Set on a river running near to the Appalachian mountains in east USA, the film follows four men; Lewis, Drew, Bobby and Ed, through their attempt at a weekend, exercising their cave-man instinct to work with nature. With the likes of canoeing, fishing, building fires and cooking in mind…as you can predict with a film, something has to go wrong for there to be something for there to be a film about! …”The best laid plans of mice and men…” The Plot In A Nutshell… Well, we’ve established that these men want to be all manly and canoe down a river, but on their way to the river, they drive through some remote and somewhat scary, hillbilly settlements. Here, they stop to persuade some of them to drive their cars downstream, so that they will be waiting for them when they’ve canoed down. During these few scenes, you pick up on the idea that the hillbillies are rather less-than-keen on these strange outsiders who are threatening their solitude, and their welcome is considerably hostile. However, while Lewis (Burt Reynolds) and Ed (Jon Voight) are negotiating with the hillbillies, there is an unexpected (and odd, to say the least) scene with an inbred hillbilly youngster playing his banjo. I’ll say no more about that scene, other than it sets an atmosphere for the rest of the film. So, they set off on their trip, having only seen the river, (which is to be flooded a few days later by the authorities for water control) on a map. The first day goes by, with a few deep and meaningful scenes. However, from the second day it all becomes a blur of human violence of the worst kind, disturbing acts of desperation, murder, rape, and a mix of the most extreme e motions. After Thoughts Do you know what I mean when I say that you get a film or a book that you can’t quite get your head around? You know, the ones that have a really big impact on you? Well, for me, this was one of those films. I found it really disturbing, but I think it tells you a lot about human nature. A Few Facts For You The film was made in 1972 and that year was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director. Ned Batty (who played Bobby) said in an interview afterwards that ‘Deliverance’ was his first film and it still haunts him today. The actors all worked in this film under no insurance, as no insurance companies would cover them due to the risks they would be taking in the river and cliff scenes. Burt Reynolds admitted that this film changed his career and his life. Final Note This film is not excellent. In some places the acting is not quite up to standard, and the plot is not always clear, so I suggest you listen carefully. On the other hand, I’d say it is definitely one to watch. It makes you see a side to the world that you’re more than likely to pass by, going about your everyday lives. It’s not pleasant, and if you tend to take the attitude that ignorance is bliss, you’d probably be better off to miss out on this one. It’s a blunt and brutal window to a less desirable lifestyle, and it definitely shows that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side!
Last summer, my friend and I had another one of our ‘great’ ideas. Her being a fashion/ trend worshiper, this was how the plan went: We’d go for our last minute holiday shop in London, and finish it off with going to Oxford Street’s famous Selfridges, where we’d heard that they did ‘really good’ henna tattoos. So, all set with our shopping lists (that’s not really, true, I don’t do shopping lists, I can’t cope with lists…too organised for my liking, but it sounds good) we caught the train to Oxford Circus, and let the shopping commence. When everything in sight was bought, we trundled down the street to Selfridges. After half an hour or so of searching and wrong directions from the staff, we finally found the henna tattoo artist’s little booth...only the henna tattoo artist wasn’t there. However, we were assured by another girl working there that she would be back in 10 minutes. So that gave us time to look around, and I fell upon a little book about the art of henna… …Henna is a traditional art of body painting, which originated around the Middle East, India, Pakistan and North Africa. It is a paste made from finely ground leaves from the Henna plant, to which hot water is then added. Henna has many names, due to the different languages of the areas from which it originated. (A few examples are, Mendee, Jamica Mignontte...But you didn’t really need to know that, I was just feeling all showy-offy). Henna has always been used for body decoration, although it was also used for other purposes, for example, the Moroccans rubbed it on their palms, because they believed it would reduce body temperature, and the ancient Egyptians painted it on the fingers and toes of Pharoahs before they were mummified. It’s only been in recent years (i.e. the last five or so years) that the art has come over seas and been taken in by the western fashio n culture. So, what happens when you get a henna tattoo? Well, the paste is applied in the pattern that you’ve chosen, and then you leave it- taking care not to crease the skin as the paste is drying, else, the end result will be distorted. The paste will dry to form a hardish crust, which will then flake off, leaving a browny-orangey mark where the paste was. The henna is NOT permanent, and will last for anything up to a few days to a few weeks. There are debates about how good this can be for your health as it is a substance alien to your body, which you allow to be absorbed into your skin, and therefore into your bloodstream…but then again, who knows?? …So anyway, the lady comes back from where-ever she was, and we get our tattoos done- I wanted a little butterfly, but she said that it’d have to be quite big because she wouldn’t be able to do all the fine detail (isn’t that what artists are supposed to be good at??) So I settle for a less detailed, slightly larger than wanted butterfly. When it’s finished, she covers it up with some tissue, and tapes it to my hip, to protect it from clothing while it dries. On the train, a few hours later, I take the tissue off to find...the lines of the butterfly about 7mm wide, lines smudged from the so-called ‘protective tissue’ and the shape barely resembling a butterfly! But don’t let my bad experience put you off, henna tattoos are a great idea and to buy your own kit is not that expensive (anything from about £6-7 upwards), and even if you are the remotest bit artistic, you’ll be able to create something half-decent. So by all means try henna, but by all means, avoid Selfridges like the plague! A little tip if you are going to buy your own kit- henna paste comes in tubes, but be sure to get a tube with the finest nozzle you can, this way you will achieve much clearer results and the detail can be much finer. You can also buy coloured henna pastes, but personally, I think the original stuff looks best. You can buy the kits from most high street chemists like Superdrug or Boots, and also most beauty salons.
I love writing. I'm no good at it, but i absolutely love it. There are no rules or restrictions to the human imagination. If you think about it, creative writing is just structure exploration into the human mind. Take for example Phillip Pullman's 'His Dark Materials' trilogy. If you've never read them, they are books set through out several different worlds. The possibilities are endless of the sort of things that you could create in other worlds. Whether you are just writing for fun or for money, writing is (i think) the most creative of the arts (music, art, drama etc) It is a really clear way of getting your opinions, or views across to people either subtley or blatently. You can influence people, or implant images in their mind, or make people aware of issues that they'd never even known about before. In my opinion, creative writing should be much more encouraged in schools. I think it's a really effective way of allowing people to express themselves, and as children, this is a time when it is important for people to do this. This wasnt really going to be a proper opinion, but it was too long to write in noodle.gorillaz comment box- i just had to let y'all know how strongly i felt bout it! thaz me - short n sweet!
Starbucks...my insides melt as i think of snuggeling down in one of those big, too-comfy-to-be-true, warm, cosey brown chairs, with a regular sized cappuchino, sprinkled with a whloe sprinkler-full of chocolate sprinkles, just the right amount of brown sugar, and my best mate sitting opposite me, ready for a good old natter...i couldn't think of anything more perfect! Starbucks to me is ultimate heaven! I never liked coffe until about a year and a half ago, and then, due to my mum's influence, i discovered..the cappuchino! what's more, i discovered the Starbucks cappuchino. Okay, okay, so the chain of americain coffee houses isn't as dreamy and perfect as i described it, but it is damn good. The service is certainly not wonderful. If you stand in the quee for long enough, you can just about manage to piece together the love life of Becky's mate Sandra with her latest crush Dave, who's actually cheating with her on Darren's mate Sharron.... Well that's about the general jist of it as the cashiers talk more to each other than the costomers who are handing over their hard-earnt cash, which goes in the till, which then goes into Becky's next pay-packet...something tells me that's just not polite! However, putting that aside, you get you're lovely steaming cappuchino, which is infact perfect in every way -and harsh words will be spoken to anyone who says otherwise- and take it upstairs to the cute little counter they have with: a selection of shakers containing a choice of chocolate, nutmeg, or cinimon sprinkles; white or brown sugar; and half fat or full fat milk. I play with my cappuchino until i am satisfied that there could not be a finer cappuchino in the land; take it to two big chairs by the window, i take one chair, my friend takes the other and we sit down to fester for the next two, maybe three hours...i'm actually not kidding, that's how long i stay there... ...so, i'm drinking my cappuchino right? and i finnish all the coffee so i just have the lovely chocolate covered froth left..but...disaster strikes as starbuck provide NO TEASPOONS FOR THEIR CUSTOMERS!!!! so i'm left with the dilema of haveing half a cup of froth to get through with know teaspoon to help me out! So i have to make do with one of those silly little wooden lolly-pop-type-sticks! i mean HONESTLY! So, Mr Starbuck, great coffee, great interior design, great armchairs, but what went wrong with the staff and the teaspoons?!?
Breckenridge...what can i say??? If you've never been, skier or not, GO! The scenery, as can be said for the majority of the Rockies is spectacular any time of year. I went there for 10 days about a month ago and wish it had been for longer. There is just so so much to do there and everyone is friendly and has so much respect for the area. The first thing i noticed about the town was that there was no graffiti, vandalism, litter, chewing gum, fag butts (come to think of it smokers in general) to be seen anywhere. The town is very well kept with well maintained housing and buildings lining the streets and loads of those cute little flowerbeds everywhere, just making it all seem so perfect. There's a stream running down one side of the town, where kids play in the summer (it's damn safe too) and plenty of cafes, restaurants and bars. One of the towns best features has got to be the free public transport. And again, these are well maintained , CLEAN buses and all the drivers are helpful, friendly and cherfull. It is common courtesy to tip the drivers, but they provide an efficient service which i would have been only too happy to pay for. Not a bit like what you'd find in England! I stayed in the Bever Run Resort, where the friend i was staying with owned an apartment, however, this is also a hotel buliding. There is a restaurant, deli (supplying groceries, aswell as hot food and sandwhiches) and a gift shop all withing the complex. Other facilities include several pools, hot tubs, jacuzzis, and a gym. You can also phone from your room fro the Bever Run Shuttle bus to pick you up from outside your building-you then tell the driver where you'd like to go, and he will take you- free of charge! I found that in the summer there is ALOT to do for the teenagers. A few cafes are open till 11 at night, there are shops in the town, aswell as a bike hire company, a 'super slide' (do not miss out on this!!), an ice skating rink and a skate park. I myself am not a skiier, however, my friend who i went with is a very experience skiier and boarder and she said that this place offers the best skiing she'd found. (esp a run called Horseshoe Bowl) The town and surrounding area is ideal for families and you will not be board! The one disadvantage is that the area is not cheap! It's not expensive, but i'd say about the same as home, possibly slightly more for some things, but then probably slightly less for others so it about evens out. If you are a skiier or not and you are in the Rockies area, this place is without a doubt worth a visit!
I've never played the computer game, come to that, i've never even seen it being played, however, i was drawn to the film with the hopes of seeing more feemales generally kicking arse! And that's certainly what happened! The film was really good fun to watch, not complicated, not a film that gets you thinking, but an easy-to-watch, action packed, arse-kicking film! Now we all know why the blokes want to see it..not that they're interested in the film or course, more the notorious Angelina Jolie! However, i'd say it's a good watch for anyone who is after a fun plot. So the film is not strictly designated to blokes! It is definitely one of those films which is probably better watched at the cinema, purely due to the special effects, however, i might question whether it was worth the cost of going to the cinema. Overall, a good to watch, excellent soundtrack, go with your mates and enjoy!
1984 in brief: Written in 1948, George Orwell describes the world of 1984 through the character, Winston Smith. It is a world where your every move is recorded, and every conversation monitored. There is no freedom of speech and everything- TV, food, clothes, jobs, healthcare, money, housing etc.- is tightly controlled by the government. AKA, Big Brother. The story is about how Winston Smith rebels against the authorities, by joining a secret community whose ultimate aim is to over throw Big Brother. My Opinion: George Orwell was an extremely far-sighted man, and 1984 is a story, which, as you read it, you realise how right he was in his predictions. We do not live in the world of Orwell’s 1984 just yet, but the concept of changing or deleting history is already occurring in our society, as is the loss of free speech. I think that this novel is becoming more and more relevant for people today. I read it about a year ago, and even then I was able to blatantly see issues in the news and current affairs which ran parallel to circumstances in Winston Smith’s world. For example, when labour MPs in the education department attempted to remove events from school history books. 1984, like many novels, can be read on many levels. It does make for good bedtime reading, however, I found that as I read on, after turning my light out to go to sleep, issues kept springing up in my mind about the book. It is definitely not a book that is easily forgotten, and I’d say it’s definitely a must for anyone remotely interested in politics or the running of the country. Even if you are not interested in those areas at all, do not be put off as I think that the novel would be an enjoyable read for everyone.
Upon first glance, it is every adventure-seeking, back-packers dream, which can be lived out from the comfort of their own armchairs. On reading it at a deeper level, 'The Beach' is a novel which explores the possibility of absolute paradise and human behavior within a community. The story of a traveller stumbling across a solitary island with a hidden community which runs on an endless supply of canabis is not an original idea. Infact an idea well known to travellers. However, Garland manages to enable the reader to almost be there. Extreme close imagery, and the literary style being like Richard's thought patterns, are the main features which contribute to the success of the novel. In my opinion, 'The Beach' is an excellent read for people interested in anything from travel to the human mind. It does not make for light reading if you have ever read or studied 'Lord of the Flies', as the underlying issues are similar and are extremely evident. My one comment against the novel is that some parts of it could have been written with more impact, as one or two of the sub-plots seem to trail off and end up not being very relevent. However, do not let that put you off as the book does have mind-altering issues and is told in a very unique and intreiging way.