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voodoolondon

voodoolondon
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Member since: 19.01.2010

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      04.05.2010 23:15
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      A great experience as a holiday or a stopover

      I lived in Seoul for six months teaching English and found it a fascinating place. Less flashy than Tokyo (and definitely less expensive) there is a good mix of old and new in Seoul which can at times be quite baffling. Think piles of chillies drying out in the sun on the pavement but internet connection speed most countries can only dream of. Most people do not speak very good English (if at all). Your best bet is to head for some young people who, although shy will usually speak more English. Having said that I was once approached by an old guy when hopelessly lost. 'Here we go again' I thought to myself as he came up to me and my map. Of course his English was faultless and he was very helpful!

      These are my recommendations of places to visit in Seoul;

      1. Gyeongbokgung (palace) this is a really cool place and they have the changing of the guards with lots of scary men banging drums and shouting. There's also a museum there which has quite a lot of interesting clothes and weapons from old times
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MArNXaBIj4Y&feature=related

      2. National museum of Korea is a nice place to go if you like Asian statues and architecture. From various places in Asia, there are lots of buddhas and artefacts.
      http://www.museum.go.kr/EngMain.do

      3. Seoul Tower (or Namsan Tower), you can go up to the top of the tower in a cable car and then you go up to the top in the lift. Well worth it for the views.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N_Seoul_Tower

      4. Insadong
      This is basically for tourists, there are lots of shops selling traditional Korean things like jewellery boxes, paintings etc. They also sell this candy made of honey which they make by hand in the shops there. It's really cool to watch it and the guys have a pretty good sales patter going in English. Very funny.
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m22Os15miSQ&feature=related
      There's also a baseball batting cage near the market if you want to try your hand.

      5. Dong dae mun
      There's a gate here (the name means south gate) and a market and lots of department stores. The department stores are open till like 5am which as one of my friends suggested means you can get drunk and then go shopping (not recommended). You can also experience such culinary delights as sausage on a stick covered in chips, bread shaped like fish filled with bean paste and pan fried silk worm larvae which is the most revolting thing I have ever smelled. Euch.
      http://www.lifeinkorea.com/Travel2/15

      As far as travel goes, the Seoul subway system is very easy to navigate (maps in English) and cheap. Unlike London Underground. Most restaurants will have some kind of menu in English although vegetarians mights get a bit stuck. Korean food is quite spicy, and beware of what looks like tomato ketchup (it will be chilli paste).

      A popular meal is bibimbap which is a dish of rice with various vegetables with miced beef and a fried egg on top. Add a little chilli sauce and mix it all together with a spoon. You can also try Korean barbecue which is grilled at your table and you wrap the little pieces of meat with garlic and some more chilli paste in a salad leaf. Koreans are also pretty obsessed with cake, so anyone looking for ice cream or dougnuts will have no problem, go somewhere like the mall and you will be inundated with Cold Stone (have your own ice cream flavour mixed on a cold slab), Dunkin donuts, Ben and Jerry's etc.

      All in all, a great place to visit. If you have a bit longer, you can travel outside to visit some of the national parks and indulge in some hiking Korean style. Watch out for the ajummas with their perms, pink tracksuits and sun visors! For some true Korean culture, go to a Norebang (karaoke room) where you sing to your hearts content for in a private room for about £20/hour.

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        29.04.2010 13:13
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        A nice present or a gift to yourself!

        I first bought one of these as a present for my mum at Chirstmas. I also got myself one and once it ran out I went out to get another one. I'm not a massive fan of scented candles but since it was Christmas I though it would be a nice touch.

        These aren't made of soy wax (but rather paraffin wax) which I would prefer for health reasons but I don't mind using them occasionally. Incidentally Pacifica do lovely soy wax candles. The wicks are cotton (not lead) and they come in recyclable glass jars.

        The candles come in different sizes and smells or 'flavours'. The one I bought was 354g and has two wicks for even burning. It has a silver lid so looks quite classy and would make a nice present. It was £13 which is about as much as I would pay for a candle. They do last a long time though and the smell is very intense.

        Compared to other scented candles the fragrance is very strong so this might not be your thing and my boyfriend will sometimes complain that it's giving him a headache. I used the Christmas cookie on when I was wrappin Christmas presents and it gave me a lovely Christmassy feeling! It's kind of a vanilla/cinnamon sugar cookie smell which mightbe too wseet for some.

        As the name suggests, these are American so I don't think we get the full range in the UK but they do have a UK website so if you can't find what you want you can probably find more flavours on their website. There are lots of yummy sounding candles that I haven't seen in my stockist (Strawberry buttercream mmm) so if you really like candles you can always order from the UK site.

        I've also tried the pear one which reminded me of juicy pear jelly bellys. There are lots of fragrnaces to choose from and I quite enjoy sniffing all the jars to see which one to buy next. All in all a good fragranced candle.

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        29.04.2010 12:20
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        Go here if you're rich and not all that hungry

        We went here for dinner one night, the restaurant is actually located in the Hotel de France just outside St. Helier. The hotel is pretty fancy so you might want to make an effort if you are used to more casual places. The restaurant is upstairs and is tastefully decorated with white linens and very elegant. We had some drinks in the bar area before dinner and when we got to the restaurant, there was only one other couple there.

        There isn't really much ambience here. It was a weekday when we went and this is a hotel restaurant, but it was empty which did make us feel a bit on show. We weren't being that loud, but when you are one of only two occupied tables (and the other is eating in deathly silence) you do feel a bit conspicuous.

        We ordered off the Springfest menu which was a set menu and good value as the regular menu is fairly expensive (I seem to remember around £20). The food is billed as modern Indian (read posh Indian!) with European flavours.

        There were vegetarian choices on the menu which was nice. I had a lentil soup to start and mushroom tortellini for main. The food was lovely tasting but the portions were tiny and I'm not a massive eater. We pronounced the food as good, it was well cooked and flavoured if a little pretentious in the presentation. The service was in keeping with the atmosphere; very good but a little pretentious.

        I don't normally eat dessert but was pretty hungry so had some apple and date samosas with cardomom cream. These were lovely and not too sweet but again a very small portion. Other choices on the menu include paneer (an Indian cheese), lobster and beef fillet. If you're looking for a typical curry you will be disappointed this is more French food cooked with Indian spices.

        In summary, I would hesitate to recommend this restaurant based on the price and the size of servings.

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        28.04.2010 23:37
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        An excellent stop for Lebanese food

        This Lebanese cafe/deli is located on Wigmore Street about a 5 min walk from Bond Street tube on the Jubilee line. There are little tables outside and a long counter running down the first half of the shop where the staff make up the food and you can buy baklawa and such. There are also little bar type tables with high chairs. Towards the back of the shop is a more cosy area out the way of incoming shop traffic.

        I've been here several times, both with friends and alone for a quick lunch and would definitely come more often if I lived closer. This time I had a halloumi and olive wrap with tabbouleh and hummous for £8.90. It was pretty big and I could only eat half the wrap, taking the other half home to eat later. It reminded me of a rolled up pizza, with tomatoes, melted cheese and some chopped up olives. The taste was good as was the tabbouleh and the hummous.

        I normally have the mezze platter here, which is my favourite. You get a big mixed plate with hummous, bhaba ganoush (aubergine) tabbouleh (parsley salad) falafel, pickles, cheese pastry. It's more than enough for one person and the flavours are lovely. But then I am slightly addicted to middle eastern food so am a bit biased. I've also had a lovely pomnegranate and orange flower drink which was very refreshing.

        The decor is very simple so this is more suited to a casual lunch or takeaway. There are nice touches such as empty cans as cutlery holders or a sprig of mint in your tap water and the staff are freindly is a little harrassed when it's busy. There are also various middle eastern sweets and syrups etc. on offer.

        I've ready a pretty horrible Time Out review, which I must say I think was entirely unmerited. As mentioned, I've brough friends and my boyfriend here and have always come away feeling full and satisfied. I wouldn't hesitate to come again!

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        28.04.2010 22:06
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        A good place to go with friends or family

        We went here for dinner one day when I didn't feel like cooking. We had gone as there was a special menu available (Springfest - 2 courses for £15 I think it was) but ended up eating off the noraml menu as we were tempted by the choice!

        The restaurant is quite old looking (in a rustic way, not a run down way) and we were greeted and our coats hung up. We sat near the window, and the waiter told us he'd turned on the heater nearby and that we should feel free to tell him if we were too hot or too cold. In fact we dubbed him 'the most enthusiastic waiter in the world'. He was very amenable, helpful and friendly, and not intrusive like some can be.

        As a vegetarian, there are often not a lot of choices but here there were more than enough and I was immediately confused as to what to order. (Please note, this was the normal menu and the Springfest menu. On the normal menu there are two veg main courses). I went for a baked mushroom which was well presented and very flavourful, presented with veg and cheese. As a main I had a kind of pastry roll filled with chinese style stirfriend vegetables and accompanied by rice and some kind of sweet chilli dipping sauce. It wasn't exactly what I had expected but I really enjoyed it. It was a nice change from the usual mushroom risotto and showed imagination.

        The menu is varied. Other options include sea bass, steak and duck breast. I think most people would find something they would enjoy here. I'd say the style is modern English cooking with everything we tried well cooked and tasty.

        At the end of the night our most enthusiastic waiter offered to call us a taxi, which we thought was a nice touch. I would definitely recommend this restaurant for a romantic evening or a cosy dinner with friends. We didn't sample the desserts but have heard they are pretty good too!

        If you search online for Doran's courtyard bistro a full menu is available to view.

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          29.03.2010 23:28
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          A yummy chocolatey treat

          I found this in the freezer section of Whole Foods in High Street Kensington and as other reviewers mention it isn't sold in supermarkets. I commend this but it does mean it might be tricky to get hold of although when I checked with my local health food store they did offer to order some in especially so might be worth checking if you're after some.

          I'm not vegan but I do try to avoid dairy generally speaking. I also try to eat as little refined sugar as possible and Booja Booja stuff in a tub is made with cashews as the base and sweetened with agave syrup (a low GI sweetener from cacti). Ice cream was never my drug of choice when I was a sugar junkie (I much preferred cake) but I was known on occasions to eat a whole tub of Ben and Jerrys Phish Food or Haagen Dasz Pralines and Cream so I have sampled dairy ice cream (although not recently).

          I'm not sure you can really call this healthy and I do try to limit sweet foods agave included but as an occasional treat I think this would be ok. It's ideal for vegans (raw vegans might be interested to know that only a proportion of cashews in this flavour are raw; other flavours are different, I believe the vanilla is completely raw). It's nice that there are only four ingredients and this reassures me that there's no weird stuff that I can't pronounce let alone identify (water, cashews, agave, cocoa powder).

          They say;
          Completely natural and made without refined sugars, emulsifiers or stabilizers Stuff in a Tub has all the creamy, sumptuous indulgence you would expect of the very best luxury ice cream but contains no dairy, soya or rice. It is gluten free, cholesterol free, low GI and GL and many of its ingredients are raw.

          I bought a little tub to try and it cost me £1.70. This is comparable to other premium brand min tubs. It comes with a little blue plastic spoon so you can eat it anywhere! I'm not mad keen on chocolate ice cream but this was the only small tub they had and I wasn't about to pass up the opportunity to try it!

          The texture is very smooth (I would say smoother than dairy ice cream) but you would not guess it was made with cashews. The chocolate flavour is very rich without being bitter. I did find it a little too sweet but this could be my tastes as I've tried to wean myself off sugary tastes in general. It definitely wasn't too sweet to stop me from eating it and I happily finished off the tub which was exactly the right size.

          I actually prefer this to dairy ice cream as I felt it had a cleaner, less cloying taste. I would imagine it's primarily aimed at those who are into health food such as vegans or with dairy/soy allergies as I think you'd have to search for it harder than most brands. I would also think that those happy with dairy ice cream would be less inclined to try it but certainly don't think they'd be disappointed if they did. I would definitely recommend it to anyone wanting a chocolatey treat (excluding obvioulsy those who suffer from nut allergies).

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          • Leap Year (DVD) / DVD / 12 Readings / 10 Ratings
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            29.03.2010 00:42
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            The worst rom com I have seen in ages

            Well I went to see this with my boyfriend. And although I wasn't expecting a great deal (it's a rom com after all and we know what some of them are like) I was disappointed and felt a bit mean for dragging him along to watch such drivel.

            As other reviewers have mentioned, the plot is based on the fact that Anna the main character can't get her boyfriend to propose so follows him to Ireland (where's he on a business trip) so she can propose to him. And follow the quaint European custom of proposing to a man on leap day. Due to bad weather she ends up on the coast of Ireland and has to somehow find her way across to Dublin with the help of Declan who runs the local pub she finds herself at.

            I think this flim fails for several reasons. Anna (Amy Adams) comes across as prissy and unlikeable. A chariacture of a successful career woman who can't cope on her own outside the city. I couldn't warm to her and felt she was doing a disservice to women with her incompetence. Her boyfriedn Jeremy (Adam Scott) comes across as boorish (why does she want to marry him again? Ah yes, she's desperate). Declan (Matthew Goode) is sullen and a bit of a loser. I wasn't rallying for any of them at any point in the film.

            The script is poor. And predictable, there's no chemistry between Declan and Anna and the romance that develops between them is clunky and at points laughable (I'm thinking of the glances they 'steal' in the b&b). It's a very boring film. And a lot of the time is spent trundling around the Irish countryside, nothing much going on (anyone seen the Van? Reminded me a bit of this in regards to plot non-existence). I nearly left half way through. I probably should have...

            I haven't seen any of the actors in this is different roles so I can't comment on how the differences, but to be fair I don't fell they had a lot ot work with in terms of script. I didn't notice the terrible accent commented on by another reviewer (but I'm not good with accents) but I did notive various stereotypical references to Ireland which weren't very amusing.

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              29.03.2010 00:22
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              A great location for a special occasion

              The Blue Elephant is an upmarket Thai restaurant situated near Fulham Broadway tube (about a 5 mins walk away). Inside it's part jungle, part restaurant - a cavernous location with a large koi pond, a bridge and foliage everywhere. I really like the atmosphere which is tropical rainforest style, but I've seen it described elsewhere as tacky (it's not your average dark wood and leather sofas joint).

              I've been here on several occasions and have always found the service to be impeccable. Very friendly but unobtrusive and the food is served with helpful suggestions sich as which sauce to eat with which dish (if there's more than one sauce). The prices are higher than the average restaurant I frequent (it normally comes to around £100 for dinner for two) so this is generally a special occasion restaurant but I believe that the price reflects the quality of food and level of service and atmosphere in the restaurant.

              So, onto the food! As a vegetarian, this is a great place to go. They actually have a separate menu for vegetarians! The choice is amazing and varied (not just the usual veg green curry). I've had the tasting menu a couple of times and was completely stuffed by the end of it. You get a full tray of various fried starters such as spring rolls, some kind of fried rice cake, a little cup of spicy salad and a couple more. For main you get a big tray of little pots with various yummy veggie dishes, including tofu, various curries and veggies.

              I've also tried the mango salad which was tangy but slightly spicy and some succulently cooked aubergine with great flavour. The boyfriend had crocodile on our last visit. It was recommended by the waiter (and we suspected it was not too popular which was why they were pushing it!) but he said it was very good. There are also of course the usual pad thai and noodle dishes, and the mains are divided into fish/seafood, meat dishes with lots of choice in every area. I'm sure you would find something you would like and they have a little key on the menu to tell you how spicy things are so you don't get a nasty surprise if you don't like your food too hot.

              For dessert I've had some lovely tropical fruit, sorbets and dinky little sweet cakes. You can also get various teas in a cute elephant teapot and exotic cocktails. My favourite; pink: guava, passionfruit and coconut which tastes just like a fruity milkshake!

              We have been to the Sunday buffet on one occasion but felt this represented less value for money. There was a lot of fried food which wasn't to our taste and we felt the focus was more on quantity not quality (although given how much some people were eating this is not surprising). The food was still good but we preferred to choose exactly what we wanted.

              As an added thankyou you get handed a little branch of thai orchids after picking up your coat if you eat here for dinner. This is indicative of the high service and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this restaurant for a special occasion (or any occasion if you're feeling flush!)

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                21.03.2010 01:50
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                My first choice for lunch in London

                I love Busaba. It may not be very authentic but it is one of my favourite places to eat in London (I know, I'm not very cultured).

                So why do I love it? Well I love the decor. I went today with two friends to the Store Street location, which is just off Tottenham Court Road. The outside is kind of oriental looking with dark wood and an orange sign. As mentioned this was set up by the same guy who did Wagamamas (Alan Yau) so it's along the same lines but with Thai food.

                Inside it is pretty dark with big square dark wood tables and an exotic feel. There are groups of tea tree lights floating in water at the back of the restuarant which is a nice touch. As also mentioned by another reviewer, you will have to share your table (unless you are a big enough group to take up a whole table). My boyfriend hates this. He is very propreitary of his space and for this reason Busaba is better off as a kind of casual dining with friends as opposed to a romantic destination. It's fine unless you get stuck on a table full of loud people having silly conversations you don't agree with and then it's a little distracting. (We also witnessed one guy spill beer over the guy sitting next to him who was not part of the same party and it got pretty tense, that was quite amusing when you are trying not to notice the argument that ensues).

                So the food. I doubt it's authentic. I've never been to Thailand but given how authentic Japanese food at Wagamamas is I imagine it's about the same level. The fruit juices here are lovely, I had a guava collins which was sweet but fresh tasting and some little veg spring rolls with a chilli sauce which I could have eaten about 5 more of! (They were quite little).

                The food comes quickly and you order sides rather than starters and everything is brought out as it comes. I also had tofu with spinach and yellow beans which I love. The tofu is soft and flavoursome (if you like tofu- I don't eat meat) and comes with chilli and spinach. My only complaint is that they seem to have made the portions smaller (at least for the tofu). I could eat more!! To go with it I had coconut rice and some broccoli with garlic and mushrooms. I often find Thai food to be too sweet but I find Busaba to be quite light, the vegetables are al dente and don't taste 'fried to death'. I was really hungry and managed to eat everything I ordered but the portions are a good size (excepting the shrinking tofu).

                Other options are sides of fish cakes and calamari. Mains include noodles, green curry and soups (I've also tried the veg pumpkin curry which was very good too). The full menu and details of locations can be found here http://www.busaba.com/menus/Main_Menu.pdf

                I normally order lemongrass tea with cookies but didn't this time. For three of us the bill came to £60 so approx £20 each a head. I would happily come here every week but unfortunately no longer live in London. It's very sad.

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                  21.03.2010 01:25
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                  Good, reliable, natural product

                  This was recommended to me for pmt by a health shop after I came off the contraceptive pill.

                  It's a small glass bottle of 30ml, with a teat pipette which you use to fill up and drop 7 drops under your tongue or in a glass of water. It's suggested to use morning and night but I tend to take it about a week before and during my period.

                  It's designed to 'harmonise imbalances during menstruation and menopause' and contains the following flower essences; Billy Goat Plum, Bottlebrush, Bush Fuchsia, Crowea, Five Corners, Mulla Mulla, Old Man Banksia, Peach-flowered Tea-tree and She Oak.

                  The liquid contains alcohol (I assume as a preservative) so it does taste rather like a very small shot of brandy (I don't like the taste of alcohol but it's not much if a little bitter). Apparently Australian Aboriginals often used flower essences to balance emotions and the guy who developed the company is Australian.

                  I wasn't really expecting much from these drops as I didn't see how they could help my moods which are quite erratic but mysteriously (and I am still not sure how) they seem to calm me down a lot around this time. Additionally and the most welcome effect is that they have massively reduced the ridiculously painful cramps I had during the first couple of days of my period. I am trying not to take painkillers and this has cut down on the number I would take. Previously I would probably take them max dosage for two days but now I would only take one dose on the first day and that is sufficient.

                  I will definitely try taking them every day to see if I can eliminate taking any painkillers at all and regulate my moods even further. If you are looking for a natural alternative to painkillers during your period I would definitely recommend this.

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                    27.02.2010 00:31
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                    A reasonable rate for London and good value

                    The Marriott West India Quay is situated in Canary Wharf in the Docklands and can be reached by the DLR or if you're very lucky the Jubilee line. Canary Wharf is largely a financial district although there is a shopping centre, bars, restaurants and a cinema. If you're looking for a tourist location this isn't really it, but it is fairly central for getting in to town. For this reason I'd say this is mostly a business hotel although I went with my boyfriend.

                    We stayed for one night and the cost was £130. The check in was smooth and the receptionist was friendly. The rooms are modern and new (the hotel was built in 2004) with neutral decor, white bed linen and was of a good size. The bed was pretty big and incredibly comfy so that's a plus. Everything was clean and well maintained and there was a big tv and coffee making facilities.

                    We did wait 5 mins or so to check out as the recpetionist was having a chat with another guest. Only a minor point and I was probably being impatient. We didn't eat breakfast there (pretty extortionate prices, although usual for hotels) but we had breakfast in Pret at Canary Wharf.

                    Overall a nice, clean, modern hotel with great comfy bed. I wouldn't hesitate to stay here again or recommend it. The only thing I could fault is that it's not very romantic, but perfectly fine. It's a chain hotel so is a bit bland.

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                  • Ninja Assassin (DVD) / DVD / 9 Readings / 9 Ratings
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                    01.02.2010 14:51
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                    Friday night film for the undemanding ninja enthusiast

                    I went to see Ninja Assassin with my boyfriend and it was actually the first martial arts type film I've ever seen so this isn't my usual type of film. I'm not really into violent films per se and this is definitely a violent film (but you could probably work that out from the poster). It deservedly has an 18 rating and the first scene (which ends in complete carnage) pretty much indicates what's to follow.

                    Unless you're a 16 year old Korean girl you probably haven't heard of 'Rain' (a Korean pop star) but he plays the main character Raizo. Raizo was raised as part of the Ozuno clan of ninjas where children are trained as ninjas in order to assassinate on order of their clan. He lives an unbelievably cruel existence devoid of love, trains relentlessly and becomes the most promising member of his clan.

                    In Berlin, Interpol agents Mika Coretti and Ryan Maslow (Naomie Harris and Ben Miles) are investigating transfers of gold which Mika believes relate to assassinations carried out by ninjas. She involves her boss Maslow and embroils herself in a conspiracy to keep the ninja assassinations hush hush and sweep it all under the carpet. This results in an attempted assassination on her which is stopped by Raizo. Thus ensues much chasing, killing and CG fight scenes.

                    I liked this film. It wasn't the best film I've ever seen, but it was entertaining and I liked finding out about ninjas (this could be a novelty thing as I've mentioned this is not my usual film style). I've read reviews that criticise the darkness in the fight scenes. It's true; a lot of the fight scenes take place in the dark and you can't really see that well. However this is supposed to be a shadowy, subterfuge type film and I don't think that would really work in a fluorescent lit room. The fight scenes are mostly (if not all; I'm not sure) CG and you do become immune to them and all the blood. They don't have so much of an impact because they're so copious and lose their effect somewhat.

                    My boyfriend complained that the plot was non- existent; it was good enough for me althought the script wasn't up to much. Rain doesn't get much to say mostly looking moody and killing people. I suppose that fits the film but the dialogue is pretty patchy. I didn't take this very seriously as a film but I did find it entertaining. Rain is pretty to look at and visually I found the film exciting if a little repetitive (as I mentioned). for a light hearted Friday night blood fest, I think this would be a good choice if you don't expect too much from it.

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                  • Up In The Air (DVD) / DVD / 13 Readings / 13 Ratings
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                    01.02.2010 13:42
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                    Slow moving film that left me feeling like I'd been at work for 2 hours

                    I've just purchased an unlimited card so this weekend we went to check out a film and it was my choice. I picked this film as I thought it sounded interesting; I'd heard that it was about a man trying to collect 10 million airmiles and I think George Clooney is a good actor.

                    The film is about Ryan Bingham (Clooney) who has a job travelling around the US firing people on behalf of companies who don't want to do it themselves. He spends his life flying between one place and the next, has no significant other, rents a flat with nothing in it, has his packing down to a 't' and has a loyalty card for every car rental, frequent flyer scheme and hotel going (well nearly anyway). His aim in life is to collect 10 million airmiles and if he does it he will be one of only 7 people to have done so.

                    His job and routine are turned upside down when a new member of staff Natalie, comes in and revolutionises the business. She thinks she can rethink the business by eliminating the travel costs and firing everyone over the internet. Bingham, being that his life revolves around travelling is not happy with this and sets about taking Natalie with him on a road trip sps she can learn the ins and outs of his business and persuade her that it can't be done over the internet.

                    I think this film was well acted. Clooney is good if a little too polished with his 'film star looks' to fit into some of the scenes and I had trouble believing his romance. I've seen him in films such as Oceans Eleven and felt he fitted better in the 'rich scoundrel role' but this could just be my perception. He's interesting to watch and Anna Kendrick (who plays Natalie) was believable as a psychology major flailing around in her first major job and struggling to assert herself when clearly out of her comfort zone.

                    The main reason that I didn't like this film was that it's so slow. For the first hour I was trying to encourage my boyfriend to walk out so we could watch something else. It's visually boring. The action is mainly Bingham, on a tour of various US regional airports in concrete wasteland after concrete wasteland firing people which makes for depressive viewing. As someone who likes escapism from their films I felt like I was at work and anyone familiar with travelling for work may feel like they're on an extended work trip. (The Alphatech work function only served to reiterate this, drunk colleagues and silly tech jokes).

                    The second half of the film is better. We learn more about Bingham, his family and lack of connection to it and start to look at the reasons why his life is the way it is. Unfortunately you might have lost interest by then and I felt a bit cheated that I'd wasted my time on all the airport scenes.
                    I think if you're looking for a quirky, slow moving film which doesn't really say anything then you'll be fine. If you're looking for action or have ever watched a film and then exclaimed at the end 'but nothing actually happened!' then this isn't for you.

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                      26.01.2010 14:23
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                      Great hair and nails supplement

                      I bought these supplements form a health shop what the condition of my hair and nails was. I had very weak, breakable hair and my nails often broke too. I was a bit sceptical about whether they would do anything but thought I would give it a go.

                      The tablets come in a white plastic tub which is sealed so you can see that it hasn't been interfered with. It has a label with a picture of a woman on it on the front and information regarding the ingredients on the back. The main ingredient is colloidal hydrophilic silica gel but it also contains MSM and horsetail (the herb not the hair from a horse!) The tablets are suitable for vegans which is useful to know as some hair supplements contain animal/marine cartilage.

                      You take 1-2 tablet with a meal per day. The tablets are quite big. They're not the biggest I've ever seen but you might need to break them in half if you have difficulty swallowing tablets.

                      A month or so after I started taking them I noticed that my nails were growing particularly well. My hair which is fine and was very easy to break also became a lot stronger. This hasn't made my hair thicker per se, but it meant that my hair looks healthier and is less prone to breaking. It somehow seems to have strenthened the hair which is very good.

                      You get 90 tablets (so enough for 1-2 months) per tub and they are priced around £16. If you have a great diet and great hair these might not be of any benefit to you but if you are improving your diet (which can affect hair a lot) but need a bit of extra help these are very worthwhile.

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                      25.01.2010 12:09
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                      Steeped in culture and well worth a visit

                      I really like Vienna, I lived there for 6 months whilst at university and I've been back since on a work trip and look forward to going there again in the future.

                      Vienna is about a 2 hour flight from London so perfect for a weekend break. It can be pretty hot in the summer and pretty cold in the winter so unless you don't mind this I'd recomment spring or autumn for a temperate visit.

                      Vienna is a beautiful city with lovely architecture, great cakes shops, and plenty of cultural sights to kep you interested such as museums and places of interest.

                      The places I would recomment to visit (in no particular order) are;

                      1. Stephansdom (St. Stephen's Cathedral)
                      Located in the main tourist/shopping district in Vienna this is a beautiful cathedral with stunning architecture. Even if you don't want to go up to the top (if you're scared of heights this might not be wise!) you can have a good look round the outside and this makes a great base to explore from

                      2. Hundertwasserhaus museum
                      This is a quirky, brightly coloured house/museum designed by the artist and architect Hundertwasser and is a cross between Dali and Gaudi. you want to go to the museum (not the houses) which is located near Schwedenplatz and combines paintings, designs, a gift shop and a nice little cafe. A slightly surreal but very interesting place to visit and sits well against the more refined setting of the old fashioned viennese building presenting a nice splash of colour if you're bored of the traditional

                      3. Gerstner (off Kaertner Strasse near the main Stephansplatz - platz means square)
                      Well this isn't a sight rather a cakes shop and although traditionally you'll be told to go to Demel or Hotel Sacher who both claim to have invented the famous Sachertorte (a rich chocolate cake with apricot glaze and chocolate icing) I like Gerstner. You can sit outside in the sun (hopefully) and watch the pace of life in Vienna and have a coffee and some cake. Coffee and cake is an institution in Vienna and with the variety on offer here, it would be rude not to. Try a slice of Dobostorte, a sponge and chocolate ganache cake with a crisp caramel topping with a Melange, a coffee and milk cappucino style drink

                      4. The Hofburg Palace
                      The former Imperial residence with parts dating back to the 13th century the Hofburg Palace is an impressive building with a lovely park perfect for sitting outside in the sun. Infamous as the place where Hitler gave a speech from the balcony it is a majestic presence in the impressive grounds. You can also visit the SilberKammer (silver collections) and Sisi museum and see how the real rich used to live. There's a vast collection of Silverware and you can see the Kaiser apartments in all their finery. a must if you like visiting stately homes and the like and imagining what it would have been like to live there for real.

                      There are numerous other things to do in Vienna, but these are my highlights. A note that the Fiakers (horse drawn carriages) are expensive so be warned unless you're feeling flush. Additionally the Sachertorte (chocolate cakes) sold in the sweet shops around the main sqare are of poor quality, dry, mass produced and best avoided unless intended as a present for someone you don't really like!

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