Damn, that looks like some high-quality brain candy.
A lot of season 1 is available on YouTube and the episodes are uploaded in the usual places. Definitely give it a shot if you like dancing and well-handled teen issues (the gay storyline is particularly well done and actually kind of fresh).
Just got back from seeing the Perth Theatre Company's production of The Ugly One which features supermodel Gemma Ward. She's been trying out acting for a while now - she was in an Australian film called The Black Balloon and is in the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie - but this is her debut on stage and it's a tricky play: she plays three different characters, two of them significant.
I thought she was decent but not a revelation. Her facial expressions were good but she doesn't know how to modulate her voice to show emotion - some of her line readings were too monotone (though she does have a very interesting voice: deeper than you would expect from her appearance). She was better as the older, more confident woman, rather than the young wife. Still, I think she has potential, she just needs training.
As for how she looks...beautiful and healthy, I'd say. I know that plenty of blogs and magazines were calling her fat after she stopped modelling, which was ridiculous. She just wasn't model-thin for the first time in years. In this she was still thin but not so waif-like - she had good muscle tone on her arms and legs. And as she's getting older and with perhaps a little extra weight, her features don't look quite so odd, though she's still remarkable to look at. Not typically pretty at all.
I know she stopped modelling partly because she was involved with Heath Ledger at the time of his death. In a twist of cosmic irony, the play was being shown in the Studio Underground at the State Theatre Centre, which also contains the Heath Ledger Theatre.
Oh, and the bell of the jellyfish is about the size of a finger nail, while their tentacles can be up to one metre long and only millimetres thick, so good luck trying to see it.
Hopefully she'll be ok.
2. Not everything from Australia is horrifying. Case in point: Cate Blanchett.
My favourite dress of the awards season.
A notebook, business cards and a coffee customer loyalty voucher are all that saved Inspector Brian Wyver from being stabbed in the heart.
The well-known Wollongong police officer was attending the home of a 39-year-old Austinmer man accused of assault on Saturday night when he was stabbed in the chest with a 30-centimetre knife.
The knife tore through Inspector Wyver's police shirt and the business cards before penetrating half the pages of the notepad in his top left pocket.
After this, he participated in a five-hour siege, resulting in his attacker's arrest.
Pocket protector on TVTropes.
Here are my thoughts on various shows.
( 10 Things I Hate About You )
( Chuck )
( Community )
( Dance Academy )
( Doctor Who )
( The Good Wife )
( How I Met Your Mother )
( Modern Family )
( The Office )
( Parks and Recreation )
( The Vampire Diaries )
So El-Jay, what's up?
Totally and completely love:
- The Thick of It. Imagine The West Wing except it's only half as long, British, a dark comedy, and monumentally profane. Like, I am not even joking about the language but it's funny because most of the f-bombs are dropped by a mad Scottish version of Rahm Emmanuel and everything is just funnier when said with a Scottish accent. You don't really need to know anything about British politics, but an appreciation for Machiavellian schemes would certainly help.
- Misfits. Everyone describes it as Skins meets Heroes and that certainly works. It's about a group of juvenile delinquents who, while doing community service, are caught in a thunder storm that gives them abilities or powers that are somehow related to their personalities. There's Kelly the punchy chav who can suddenly hear people's thoughts, Alisha the good time girl whose touch sends people into a sexual frenzy, frequently ignored Simon who can become invisible, and disgraced runner Curtis turns back time. Only the obligatory psychotic jackass Nathan appears to be unchanged but we find out eventually and it would spoil the finale to tell you.
The show is intelligent and real and because it's British it's not populated with former models. These kids can act and a couple of the characters are genuinely weird or disturbed.
- Cranford Revisited. Just a two part Christmas special with most of the characters returning plus a few new ones. It started out a little fluffy but then the Gaskell March of Death started up so I wouldn't be surprised if half the town died in the next episode. Still, if you have longed to see Andrew Buchan holding a small infant (and I know I have) then you get your wish.
- Doctor Who. I have such low expectations for RTD penned episodes that I generally like them ok. As usual, a rubbish plot was buoyed up by great performances. Bring on The Moff!
Good but probably won't ever watch again:
- The Thorn Birds. I bought this mini-series for my mum and we watched it all on Boxing Day and as it's 400+ minutes long and I hadn't seen it before, my mind was fried after. I thought it was good despite the fact that I didn't like most of the characters. I had no idea the relationship between Meggie and Ralph was so squicky (for those who haven't seen it, they meet when she's a child and he's in his late 20's and he acts as a father figure to her. So inappropriate!) Despite the fact that it was set in Australia, it was actually filmed in California and featured only one Australian actor so it didn't feel at all Australian to me. There was only one kangaroo! Still, my favourite part of it all is that Rachel Ward and Bryan Brown (that lone Australian actor) met on the set in 1983 and have been married ever since. The chemistry between them does sizzle.
Hope you all had a great Christmas and enjoy the New Year!
Here is a list of things I like:
- Royal Pains featuring Donna's Republican boyfriend and Ax from Animorphs. Only two episodes so far but I think it has potential. I particularly like Tucker and Libby. At the very least, it's light summer fluff and I need that some times.
- The trailer for Creation a new biopic about Charles Darwin. Suck it Intelligent Design!
Things I love:
- These cookies. I made them on Sunday and have had to keep them in my room so that my brother doesn't eat them all. Of course, my brother would still eat them all if they were mediocre cookies but they are not. They are ridiculously good. I cooked them a little longer than the recipe says to and I left out the raisins because you don't mess up a chocolate cookie with fruit! Try them. Try not to eat them all.
- Glee which is charming and funny and smart and not High School Musical the TV show. Definitely the new series I am most looking forward to.
- Hugh Dancy. Again. Some more. Watched Confessions of a Shopaholic for him. Stupid book turned into a slightly less stupid movie (and the book is really stupid). Cleansed my palate by watching Dancy in Daniel Deronda which is how I first fell in love with him. Hadn't realised that Jamie Bamber was also in that adaptation.
( Bamber's horrible/hilarious period facial hair under the cut )
Things I don't like:
- The weather here in Australia can not make up its mind. It's winter. Be winter-y Australia!
Things that are taking way to long to download:
- Casualty 1909 which I am watching for a) the social history and interesting turn of the century medical procedures, and b) Millais Culpin/Ethel Bennet who are AWESOME and ADORABLE and SAVE LIVES.
If you like angsty, realistic period dramas then this one is for you.
I had a wonderful time in Egypt but the experience has made me value my life in Australia all the more. Yes, the pyramids, temples, and tombs are amazing, but I certainly won't miss the bottled water, bat-shit crazy drivers, and the complete lack of a rubbish collection system (trash just litters the streets. It's rather shocking).
Hopefully I'll have my pictures up soon. In the mean time, lj is pretty hard to cath up on so please let me know if something major has happened.
Anyway, here is what is new with me:
1. University is over until March next year. My exams weren't great and I haven't checked out my results yet. I'm hoping that my class work will help me maintain my HDs but I'll probably get knocked down to Distinctions which will suck but I suck at exams and that's life.
2. I'm going to Egypt next year for about two weeks. I'm really excited but I'm going by myself (I'm doing an 8 day tour when I get there but I will be on my own for several days) and so that excitement is heavily tinged with nervousness. But it's all booked and paid for (except for two nights accommodation in Alexandria - any recommendations, let me know!) so there's no backing out now. Plus I've been wanting to do this since I was 7.
3. I just can't believe that the writers strike is still going on. I thought it would be sorted by now.
4. We have a new Prime Minister in Australia! And we're ratifying Kyoto! Our days being America's lap dog are over! Go us!
5. TV-wise, I'm loving Cranford and Top Gear (thank hypothetical deities for the BBC!) After ten episodes of not watching Moonlight but being a member of a Moonlight community I finally watched Moonlight. It's terribly cheesy but I kinda like it and you can actually see it improving.
Finally, I am not a fan of Jack Black. But every time I watch this trailer, I not only laugh, I feel happy and hopeful. Maybe it's the magical powers of Mos Def and Michel Gondry working to tone down Jack Black's Jack Blackness. Whatever it is, I can't wait for this film which looks to be not only good but great.
I have some opinions on gun control that I'm going to put under the cut.
( Read more... )
I feel like I've undergone a right of passage...ish.
Anyway, the film is excellent. Set in Spain in 1944, a young girl named Ofelia travels with her pregnant mother to the base camp of her new step-father, a cruel and vicious captain in Franco's army searching for Republican Militia in the mountains. Once there, she escapes into a fantasy world where she is told that she is the lost daughter of Hades and must complete three quests in order to return to his magical kingdom. The quests are dangerous and horrifying but nothing compared to the real world she so desperately wants to escape.
The acting is wonderful, the special effects are great and the film is beautifully shot. However, this is not a family film. More time is spent in the real world than the fantasy one, and the real world is dark and depressing. Lord of the Rings, despite it's huge battles, is more appropriate for kids than this.
( Very mild spoilers and character discussion )
If you like your fairy tales truly fractured, don't mind subtitles and can stand some violence then go and see this film. But I say again, DON'T TAKE THE KIDS!
For the first week we stayed just outside of Bateman's Bay, which is three hours south from Sydney, on the coast. Now on the road to Bateman's Bay (that road's name is the Princes Highway btw) I noticed a sign which indicated a turn-off to the town of Mollymook, the place where Duncan and his daughter are living (and ordering assassinations from) in the season 2 finale of Veronica Mars.
Despite the ensuing screams from myself and my sister (which went something like, "OH my GOD! Did you see that? Mollymook! Pull over, pull over, pleeeeeaaaaase Dad?!") we didn't stop that day to go and find everyone's least favourite robot and advise him to go check out an STD clinic. However, on the way back to Sydney, a week later, my mother was a lot more understanding and let me walk around a bit to take some pictures for my "Veronica Mars groupies" (as she likes to refer to you guys).
( Behold my brilliant photography and artful manipping skills! )
( More on school, life, turning 19 and the first of many interesting facts about genocide that I have recently learned )
Steve Irwin aka "The Crocodile Hunter" was killed by a Stingray while filming a documentary on the Great Barrier Reef.
When I first heard this I couldn't believe it. I thought Steve Irwin would always be there, wearing khaki and doing stupid things like playing with snakes. It was such a shock to hear that he had died.
Steve Irwin has always been more popular in the US than he has been here. At first, Australians didn't know what to make of him. We though he was putting on the stereotypical Aussie bit and it annoyed us because we're not like that. But then he started doing some really great interviews (especially the one with Andrew Denton on Enough Rope) and hey, that was him. He was being absoloutely genuine and I grew to respect his commitment to conservation. Underneath the bluster he was a very smart guy.
I'm going to miss him. He was a good man who did a lot to encourage environmentalism.
I was really suprised to hear how he died. I have done a lot of diving and snorkeling and have never viewed Stingrays as a serious threat. They never attack unless provoked and are much more likely to swim away. You have to wonder what he was doing to it for it to attck him.
The second great Aussie who died was author Colin Thiele. He died of heart failure and was 86. Thiele was one of the most successful Australian writers, publishing almost 80 books during his lifetime. His most famous works include Sun on the Stuble, Pinquo, Storm Boy and my favourite Uncle Gustav's Ghost (yes, I liked saying the title). He was an amazing writer.
He was also a full time teacher for much of his career and eventually worked with the South Australian Education Department on creating the new curriculum. He served in the RAF during World War 2.
His last book had been finished and is scheduled to be published next year.
My thoughts are very much with both families.
koalathebear was discussing Jabberwocky here, a poem I adore. She reminded me that I had read a parody of the poem...somewhere.
After a bit of searching, I discovered it in The Even More Complete Book of Australian Verse by Australian satirist John Clarke.
The poem is not a parody of Jabberwocky; what it does is use the style of Jabberwocky to satirize Australian politics and politicians, in particular the 'Children Overboard' scandal. Some of the nonsense of words are not nonsense at all: 'ruddock' is a reference to Philip Ruddock who was the immigration minister at the time of the 'Children Overboard' scandal.
As such, the full effect of the poem will be lost on non-Australians but it is brilliantly written.
In the same book is a fantastic parody of Gilbert and Sullivan's 'I am the very model of a modern Major-General'. This one can be enjoyed by Aussies and non-Aussies alike ;-)
You can hear the original here.
This book is truly excellent. I may post more of the parodied poems later as I love the Emily Dickinson and Robert Frost ones.
'Mr. Ambulance Driver' by The Flaming Lips
From their latest album, this is a very cool little track. I particularly like the line 'Mr. Ambulance Driver I'm not a real survivor'.
'Sex Changes' by The Dresden Dolls
Heh. Not one I'd play in front of my mother, but I love this song.
'Don't let me be misunderstood' by Santa Esmeralda
I have this from the Kill Bill V.1 soundtrack. Lots of fun.
'And Darling' by Tegan and Sara
From the album 'If it was you'. I think this was one of the songs they played when I went and saw them live - they were awesome.
'Who Sold Her Out' by Eskimo Joe
In preparation for their latest album's release, I listened to the first two Eskimo Joe albums a lot recently. I love this song but it really reminds me of the Duncan/Veronica relationship on Veronica Mars.
'If you see my girlfriend cry, just keep walking, pass her by, cos I'm not allowed to talk to her...'
(miniorr this is a great angsty boy song with an awesome hook ;-))
'London Bombs' by Eskimo Joe
From their latest album. Not the song you expect given the title but it's just beautiful. Their second album, 'A Song is a City', settled for me that Eskimo Joe is one of Australia's best bands and their new album has just reinforced that opinion.
'Madeline and Nine' by Mike Doughty
I prefer this to 'I Hear the Bells' honestly (*ducks*) . Love it.
'Mother Greer' by Augie March
Another Aussie band here. Though the lyrics don't always make sense, this is a gorgeous song.
So there you go ;-)
So I picked up one of the props (it was supposed to be a school book) which was a copy of Shute's The Mysterious Aviator (originally published as So Disdained). I really enjoyed it and soon read A Town like Alice, for which I had already seen the movie adaption and was suprised to discover that they'd only made the first half of the book into a film! I found the second half of the book equally interesting but it's not terribly cinematic ;-)
A friend of the family had given me In the Wet a while ago but I haven't had time to read it until now. So far I'm really liking it.
The thing I love most is his imagery. He paints such a vivid portrait of the Australian landscape - when I read I can almost taste the dust in my mouth (in the outback dust gets every where and there's not a lot you can do about it) and feel the oppressive heat on my back. It's excellent stuff.
His main character, a priest named Roger Hargreaves, narrates the story in a very intimate way. I often have problems with stories told from first person perspective but Shute makes it work.
What I do have trouble with in his work is how he refers to Australia's indigenous peoples as 'blacks' or 'half-castes' - it's very...awkward to read that. The novel was published back in 1953 so I'm guessing he's probably just portraying the attitude of 'European' Australians of the time - I don't think he's being rascist per se, but just holds the uneducated and biased opinions that most people were brought up with. It grates on my nerves to read it but I'm not going to let it detract me from enjoying other elements of the story.
Because I was so excited about the whole Veronica-Mars-is-going-to-be-on-10-at-7:
It was good. Not as great as the last episode, because that one was freaking awesome, very early West Wing-esque if you ask me or my mum. But it was still good. Stacy was ok. Her husband was annoying.
CAMERON THE WORLD DOES NOT REVOLVE AROUND YOU! GOD! She pisses me off! See! She drove me to profanity and kids used to try and pay me money to swear in high school because I never would. Anyway. Cameron sucks.
And there was no way near enough Cuddy. Cuddy is awesome.
But House said that Chase would run away like a scared Wombat. Wombats, for all their cute appearance are quite fierce. And now let us take a moment to remember the greatest Wombat that ever was: Fatso the Fat-Arsed Wombat, the unofficial mascot for the Sydney Olympics. Ahh Fatso. How I loved thee.
And now we are one day closer to VM! I just love...EVERYBODY!