Thursday, March 6, 2014

Book Review: The Things They Carried By Tim O'Brien


The Things They Carried
By Tim O'Brien

Published: December 29, 1998 By Broadway
Pages: 246 Pages
Cover: Tad boring, but, hey, the book is about war. What can you expect?

Summary: They carried malaria tablets, love letters, 28-pound mine detectors, dope, illustrated bibles, each other. And if they made it home alive, they carried unrelenting images of a nightmarish war that history is only beginning to absorb. Since its first publication, The Things They Carried has become an unparalleled Vietnam testament, a classic work of American literature, and a profound study of men at war that illuminates the capacity, and the limits, of the human heart and soul.

My Thoughts: My teacher made us walk down two floors to the book room to get this book and back up two floors, all carrying our backpacks and junk as well. TO REPRESENT THE THINGS THAT WE CARRY.

What the f............

Just messing, well, not about the story, about the little almost f-bomb. Anyways, I finished this book twenty minutes ago. I was reading it for class and when I saw the premise, I was going to cry because, YET ANOTHER TERRIBLE BOOK TO READ, I thought. And for the first couple chapters, I thought that, but after Sweetheart of the Song Tra Bong, this book stuck with me.

I thought it was just about war. About him trudging through the war and fighting and things along that line, but no, it was much more than that. O'Brien had a message and although I only really understood it because we were dissecting it every three minutes in class. Anyways, it's not just about the war, it is about the real meaning of the war through Tim's eyes and through the other characters' eyes. The characters were the best part about the book, however. The main character, Tim, is also our narrator is a real dick and I didn't like him until the last chapter because he was so goddamn confusing about everything he was explaining, but we have other characters who bring a little something to the book. They each have crazy, overpowering personalities that work well together, like a platoon should, but my favorite would have to either be Mary Anne, Rat Kiley or Kiowa. 

In each of them, I saw a little bit of myself and that was great to see, considering, I've never held a gun a day in my life. As much as I disliked Tim, I have to say he is one great writer. His writing was raw, it was intense, sensitive and sweet all at the same time. It is also honest, even though he goes on about how his stories aren't true from the beginning to end.

Tim O' Brien, thanks for sharing this story, even though, in this book. You were an impeccable ass. 


Sunday, January 5, 2014

Revenge's Return: Homecoming Recap


"Bitch said she was having my baby. Bitch lied." Not said by Daniel Grayson.


Well the news reporters are now talking all about Emily..and her disappearance. Nolan and Aiden are worried because Emily hasn't showed up to the rendezvous point. So there's much talk there and we see Emily wind up in the middle of the ocean. Still alive!

That't really all that matters, so we go back to everyone being worried about Emily except Daniel, who we know shot Emily. He's acting all nonchalant about his wife being fucking missing because he thinks she's dead. No one knows about what really happened, all we know is that whomever killed Emily was on board that boat. Everyone suspects Victoria, obviously, because she hates Emily, but its Daniel.

All throughout the episode I was like: DAMMIT DANIEL SHOT HER, SOMEONE ARREST HIM. EMILY GET BACK HERE SO THEY CAN GET THIS BASTARD.

Jack and Aiden track Emily with the tracker she sets off and she ended up hitching a ride on the back of a boat. How? 


Hmmm...But Aiden finds her and she's like, LET'S GO AIDEN, WE CAN GET AWAY. Aiden is like. You do realize you're dying right?

She probably doesn't know anything anymore considering she got shot in the stomach twice and was swimming in the freaking Atlantic! So he get's the captain's attention and he finds Emily. 

But the question is: Why? Why wouldn't he just get away with Emily like they planned? SHIT, NO ONE KNOWS.

So Emily is taken care of at the hospital and everyone goes to see her. Except Victoria because everyone thinks she shot her! Emily is okay, too, well she does have a slight case of amnesia and remembers nothing about anything. She doesn't even remember who she is. Good plot, Emily. As much as I love her, she is a shitty revenge giver. Victoria is sad since she can't see Emily and rub it in her face that she knew what a lying whore she was, so Patrick comforts her and they're fine. UNTIL....

Nolan shows up and tries to talk to him and they talk and Victoria freaks out and yells at Patrick, who yells at Nolan and then Nolan is sad. Nolan can't go see Emily either which also sucks. Only person who's talked to Emily so far is Daniel and Daniel had this hateful look in his eyes and all throughout this episode I thought he was going to try to kill her. He didn't, but you never know what will happen in future episodes. She knows nothing, so he has nothing to fear because she doesn't even know who he is. 

And so, the rest of this is how everyone believes Victoria shot Emily. Then we see Margot who had a photographer on the boat and while everyone said they were in the main room being photographed, the people not on film are Victoria..and someone else as Jack points out.

Lydia is back as well and is living her life with Conrad well and as it turns out along with Victoria and Daniel, Lydia wasn't on film as well.

Then Daniel, the idiot he is, tells his mother he shot Emily and he was going to turn himself in until she went to Conrad and told him what happened. So, it looks like Lydia is the next David Clarke.
While all this was going on, Aiden was going to sneak Emily out, but she freaked out and called the nurses on him, since she didn't remember who he was. Aiden thought she was faking amnesia, too bad, Aiden.

No one knows what to do.

Nolan hacked into the hospital records and finds out that Emily's amnesia came from trauma and she made herself forget everything. Jack gets Charlotte to help him see her, but while Charlotte visits she tells Jack about how Emily told her David Clarke was her dad.

 

Dammit, Emily.

Charlotte and Jack get to the hospital just in time to get rid of a nurse who was trying to put something into Emily's IV. Turns out that nurse is an old friend and probably past lover (since she kisses him) of Aiden. She says she came to help, but it looks like she tried to harm poor Em.

Jack helps Emily and they chat. He kisses her on the forehead and gives her Amanda's necklace and she remembers. Before Jack walks out, she remembers Daniel shot her.

Daniel and Conrad also get into a fight in which Conrad tells Daniel he no longer has his help. And as for Victoria, Patrick tells her about the infinity box.

Shit....

That was a lot.


Well, Revenge was amazing and it really picked up with this episode. If it stays at this pace, I will continue to enjoy it. Good JOB!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Movie Review: American Hustle


American Hustle (2013)

Starring: Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper and Jeremy Renner
Summary: A con man, Irving Rosenfeld, along with his seductive British partner, Sydney Prosser, is forced to work for a wild FBI agent, Richie DiMaso. DiMaso pushes them into a world of Jersey powerbrokers and mafia.

My Thoughts: More and more movies about the 70's, still not getting any better...No matter who you place in it.

For bringing in big bucks, this movie did everything right. American Hustle peeks everyone's interest with Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, whom we all know from one of my favorite movies, Silver Linings Playbook. And its a good movie, its enjoyable, its funny at some points, but award winning? I don't think so...

The plot was holy at some points, and also, a bit confusing, but again, you get into it because you want to find out what's going on. Not really because you care for anyone in the movie. Although he wasn't the one getting the praise, Bradley Cooper did the best. Christian Bale, Amy Adams...they didn't get into their roles as much as I would've liked them to. I love Jennifer Lawrence, but it seemed like the directors just chose her because she is...you know, America's sweetheart, Jennifer Lawrence, not because of her acting ability itself.

She got into the role and it was great to see, but it wasn't enough in my opinion. Christian Bale's fatness was also not believable, which is sad because he actually gained weight for this. Amy Adams, I just didn't believe her role at any point in the movie, it was just like, "Wow, so that's Amy Adams, good to see you." I didn't care for her character. Again, Bradley Cooper is what made this movie so great for me.

He shined and made this movie into something. He showed a message in this movie as well, a message about "hustling", but the other characters in the movie drew away from that message. 

So, its a movie, enjoyable, great film, but award winning?

Yeah, okay.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Book Review: Silver Linings Playbook By Matthew Quick

The Silver Linings Playbook

Silver Linings Playbook
By Matthew Quick

September 2nd 2008 By Picador USA
Paperback
289 Pages
I Own This Book
Cover Love: I personally like this cover more than the movie edition, even though I do love Jennifer Lawrence. She is a queen, but I love this one because it's simple and yet it says a lot.

Summary: Pat Peoples has a theory that his life is actually a movie produced by God, and that his God-given mission in life is to become emotionally literate, whereupon God will ensure a happy ending - which, for Pat, means the return of his estranged wife Nikki, from whom he's currently having some 'apart time.' It might not come as any surprise to learn that Pat has spent several years in a mental health facility. When Pat leaves hospital and goes to live with his parents, however, everything seems changed: no one will talk to him about Nikki; his old friends now have families; his beloved football team keep losing; his new therapist seems to be recommending adultery as a form of therapy. And he's being haunted by Kenny G. There is a silver lining, however, in the form of tragically widowed, physically fit and clinically depressed Tiffany, who offers to act as a go-between for Pat and his wife, if Pat will just agree to perform in this year's Dance Away Depression competition.

My Thoughts: 
Silver Linings Playbook is an adventure. It had a lot of heart and I was emotionally invested A LOT! I loved every single moment of it, regardless of how dull and slow it got. It was the kind of book that took me a while to finish, but only because I was deep-reading it, if you know what I mean. I needed to put it down at some points, just to really think about it.

This story was moving in the aspect that I felt a little bit of Pat in myself. Not the stalking my exes, coming home from the mental hospital part, but his emotions. I felt what Pat felt, saw what Pat saw and I was just...Pat. He is his own character and is a star in this book. This book is simple, its beautiful and tells the truth. It's real and you don't see that a lot. 

And, so we cannot forget about Tiffany. Tiffany is vulgar, angry and just so goddamn amazing. I fell for Tiffany a little bit myself. Her presence in the story, just made it better for me as well. I also enjoyed Pat's parents a little more in here than I did in the movie, and I usually hate book parents because they're just assholes, but not Pat's mom and dad. They were not just assholes, they were nice assholes.

Such nice assholes. 

Well, not much more to say than I loved this book! I loved it. You know you loved a book when you have to think really hard about the fact you just finished a book.


Sunday, December 15, 2013

American Horror Story Coven Recap: Head


Long time no talk, well, I am going to skip over the past few episodes and start with this one. This is the winter finale of American Horror Story Coven.

Well, well, during a season of a show there's usually an episode that picks the show up. This is that episode. This is how you do an American Horror Story episode.

Well, it starts with Hank, Cordelia's husband, as a child hunting with his father. You think he's hunting animals, but no, no, he's hunting witches. And so regardless of his father's instruction to kill the witch, the boy is still hesitant to do so because of the witch's pleading. His father ends up kill the witch anyways and tells him to never give them mercy.

Which is weird because Hank kind of ends up marrying a witch, cheating on his wife WITH ANOTHER WITCH. But you do start to care for him a tad. ONLY A LITTLE, Mainly because he's a terrible person, but his life is messed up. Who gives a 7 year old a gun, anyways?...Rednecks...Dammit.

And so after this, we head back to the present where Fiona delivers Madame Delphine's head back to Marie's shop to ask for an alliance. And since the Madame is immortal, she's still as talkative as ever and you know, angry, that she's been decapitated and back in the clutches of Marie. Not knowing that Marie hired the witch hunter or that the witch hunter is Hank, she dismisses her. Back at the house, Cordelia, still blind, is trying to cook. Myrtle, watching over her is saddened over the fact she's struggle. And, personally, Myrtle, if someone threw sulfuric acid on my face, I'd be struggling as well. Myrtle invites the witch council members over and they all chat. The members are just like, "Oh well, sorry for burning you alive and all, but your skin looks great! Hahahah." And she poisons them to make them still and scoops their eyes out to give to Cordelia. GREAT!

But Cordelia loses The Sight as they call it. But hey, now she can function correctly in the kitchen! 

Hank is off to visit his dad at WITCH HUNTING CORPERATIONS. Well, they call it Delphi. His father, who's crazy, is disappointed in him for not killing all the witches in New Orleans, but Hank promises to do so. Even killing his wife, who he loves even though she can't even make an omelet, much less a sandwich for him.

Madison and Zoe go to the hospital and see Nan still obsessing over Luke, the sexy neighbor boy. His mother, who is also bat shit crazy, is lurking over him as he is in a coma. She isn't happy to see them because they're devilish witches, regardless of the fact they saved her son's life. Ungrateful whore. Nan tells his Luke's mother his thoughts and they bond over a song and all this lovey-dovey shit goes on.

Queenie was suppose to burn Delphine's head, but instead she has her own agenda. She is making her watch all these movies about slavery and African American freedom and such. i.e. Roots

Marie begins to torture Hank into killing the white witches and Misty and Cordelia are in the plant garden...you know...bonding. While back in the hospital, after the bonding session between Nan and Luke's mother. Luke begins to yell that his mom sucks. Which she does, don't get me wrong, but I don't think it's good considering he's in a coma. But he does so through Nan, telling his mother that he knows she killed his father when he was going to leave WITH THE BEES! THHEEE BEEES.

She then throws Nan out and we are back at Queenie's place. Since Roots was a bust, she plays a wonderful hymn by an African American choir and Delphine starts to cry. Hank bursts in and shoots everything up. 

Which had me like: 

image

Hank is going Terminator on everyone and just as he is about to kill Marie, Queen sacrifices herself by using one of Hank's guns and shoots herself in the head, which kills him, too, thanks to her voodoo powers. Oh, and Luke's mother smothers him to death with a pillow!

Almost forgot.

Well, well, that scene was beautiful and powerful and it got the point across. I almost cried during it, I swear. Maybe it was the music, but I loved it. I did. It was just perfect in general. 

I loved the detail brought into this episode, most things were brought into light and I've watched it twice. I wish more episodes were like that, more emotional in general. 

I don't know if Queenie and Hank are coming back, they may, because you know, we have Misty the magical healer who just brings everyone back to FUCKING life, which in my opinion is annoying. Since they have this emotional aspect with the deaths of characters we care about, they should leave it. I was okay with Kyle being brought back because it started the season off and I was semi okay with Madison being back, only because I like her character. Myrtle, no. Just, no, but she is a brilliant actress.

So, I am ready for the premiere of the next episode next year. 
Are you?

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Book Review: The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby
By F. Scott Fitzgerald
1942 By Scribner
180 pages
Paperback
Given To Me By a Teacher
Cover Love: I don't particularly like this cover, but it does represent what the book is a little bit about. If you look at it in certain ways, that is.


Summary: 
Self-made, self-invented millionaire Jay Gatsby embodies some of Fitzgerald's--and his country's--most abiding obsessions: money, ambition, greed, and the promise of new beginnings. "Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter--tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther.... And one fine morning--" Gatsby's rise to glory and eventual fall from grace becomes a kind of cautionary tale about the American Dream.
It's also a love story, of sorts, the narrative of Gatsby's quixotic passion for Daisy Buchanan. The pair meet five years before the novel begins, when Daisy is a legendary young Louisville beauty and Gatsby an impoverished officer. They fall in love, but while Gatsby serves overseas, Daisy marries the brutal, bullying, but extremely rich Tom Buchanan. After the war, Gatsby devotes himself blindly to the pursuit of wealth by whatever means--and to the pursuit of Daisy, which amounts to the same thing. "Her voice is full of money," Gatsby says admiringly, in one of the novel's more famous descriptions. His millions made, Gatsby buys a mansion across Long Island Sound from Daisy's patrician East Egg address, throws lavish parties, and waits for her to appear. When she does, events unfold with all the tragic inevitability of a Greek drama, with detached, cynical neighbor Nick Carraway acting as chorus throughout. Spare, elegantly plotted, and written in crystalline prose, The Great Gatsby is as perfectly satisfying as the best kind of poem.

My Thoughts: 
I read this book for class and ever since the movie came out I had been meaning to see it. It was good, not fantastic, but good. I kind of hated it in a way though, but that's just because of the way we broke the book down symbol-by-symbol, scene-by-scene.  But if you're reading this book for pleasure, you probably will enjoy it. It's a fun, short read.

A bit dull at some points, but attention grabbing at others. And I read the book before I saw the movie, which ultimately made me understand the movie a bit more. I appreciated the characters more in the book, too. You grow attached to these people, but I hated them all. Every single one of them, yes, even Gatsby.

They were all arrogant and ignorant to the real problems in society. Although, that is the deal back in that time period, I hated them, regardless. But with this kind of classic, you can form your own opinions on the different problems. And even, the tragic end. I felt nothing towards it. I didn't feel anything to the end and after the final page, I felt nothing. Just that, it was good, but I wasn't emotionally attached to it like you are suppose to be with a good novel. 


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Movie Review: Catching Fire (2013)

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013) Poster

Catching Fire (2013)
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks
Summary: Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark become targets of the Capitol after their victory in the 74th Hunger Games sparks a rebellion in the Districts of Panem.
Rating: 8.9/10 = Front Row Seat!

My Thoughts: 
I liked the first one, so you know, I must have LOVED this one! It was great, not fantastic, but it certainly did exceed my expectations and it was a hell of a good time to see with my friends. This movie surprised me in a lot of ways, such as the acting. The acting got way, way better in this movie. Even though I was giggling at Jennifer Lawrences' hilarious faces, I liked how real her expressions were. Wiress and Beetee's (Amanda Plummer and Jeffrey Wright) parts were the best for me. I loved the craziness in their acting and how expressive they were. It was wonderful! They were a weird addition to the group, but it was enjoyable to see how they mixed in.

In this sequel, I feel like it didn't care on from the last movie very well, however, and that's what a sequel should it. It just told another story and it felt like the movie was trying to be a whole new thing. Jennifer Lawrence has definitely gotten places in the acting world and is in a league of her own and she was good, but we must talk about Josh. He wasn't spectacular, but he still won me over as Peeta. Good job, but he could have brought more to the table. Haymitch (Woody Harrelson), great. Effie (Elizabeth Banks), crazy and still so wonderful. Finnick (Sam Claflin)was very good as well. I mean, I pictured Finnick as this muscle-bound hot ass, but he was okay. He had to grow on me in order for me to appreciate his character, unlike in the book where I just was like,BAM! Finick rules, I love him! Then there is Gale (Liam Hemsworth) who really isn't anything special to the movie. He didn't stand out whatsoever to me. Oh, and before I forget, there was Jena Malone and Johanna Mason. This was the perfect casting choice I have seen in a long, long time. She was flirty, mean, fun, sexy all at the same time. It was wonderful to see her acting again. I mean the last time I saw her was that small part in Sucker Punch years ago. 

And so, as I said before, Catching Fire was great and presented all these new things, but it was a lot. It was kind of choppy and not well put together, but it made sense. It was good, but tried to hard to be it's own thing. The effects were good, just, for me, a little over the top. They were so good, they looked fake and that just doesn't scream professional to me. Simpler is better sometimes. 

But like I said, while watching it, you'll probably only see 2 percent of the things I am mentioning here because you'll get so invested in it. Its very good, but when you think about it afterwords, it leaves you wondering: Was it that good?
In my opinion, maybe.