Movie Review - Napoleon Dynamite

For one of blog topics we were asked to guest post on someones blog, therefore i will share my opinion on the film "Napoleon Dynamite" on Eileen's Blog.

This film is about a socially awkward high school student from Preston, who lives with his grandmother, his bother Kip, and their pet llama Tina. Napoleon befriends two fellow outcasts, Deb and Pedro, whom decides to run for class president against the commonly stereotypical popular snobby girl that every other teen film has, Summer Wheatley. Napoleon decides to help his new friend in his campaign, while dealing with his bizarre family life at home.

Some of my friends who share the same sense off humor, suggested I watch this. I will never trust their choice of film again. Let me just say, I enjoy offbeat humor, in fact I enjoy the jokes in 90% of films. "Napoleon Dynamite" is far from funny. I was waiting for 96 minutes, which I will never get back, for something funny to happen, or even anything at all to happen and nothing did. The plot (for lack of a better term) and comical dialogue was non awful, had I paid to see this film in the cinema I think I'd have been pretty annoyed afterwards. It baffles me as to how it received such positive recognition. It was simply dull, and to those off you thinking of watching it, I've a better idea. Turn off the television and watch something more interesting, like paint drying, or the grass outside growing. had I paid to see this film in the cinema I think I'd have been pretty annoyed afterwards. If I was on a desert island with a solar powered TV/ DVD and I only had this one DVD I would never watch it again.

Below is a video from YouTube that has a few of the apparently "funnier" quotes. If these are the "funnier" moments you can only imagine what watching the rest of the film was like.


A Form of Journal

This is a form of journal writing which I have used to document the texturing of both my daily thoughts and also how they intermingle with what I do on a daily basis.  If successful I should give an impression not of chronicling of what I do each day, but what I think and see of the world. Hopefully it would have provided a useful platform to gain ideas for my writing. They were daily writing exercises which I didn’t really have any intention of ever showing to people. This one is written in the same style as a lot of these older journals but I have cleaned up the grammar and punctuation for the purpose of the blog. I am now going to also apologize for any sense of self-importance or egotistical mood which I’m aware is present throughout the text, it is the unfortunate result of the arrogant mind which I have yet to level.
 
Clawing at the stagnant desaturation of the room, night tired eyes still adjusting to the day. The tip of my nose is chilled, the bed barely warm. I turn to see “The Harmony of Difference and Sameness” from which the great sage has intimately transmitted1 to me as I take my waking slow2. It is one of those shining examples of contradictory statements which cause the sagely world of mystical thought to have its humbling appeal. The poem has bent and formed many scholars since its creation. Poor seventh century Chinese Chan Buddhist who helped shape the Japanese school of Soto, who was a little known master during his own long life. Next to the chant is a wood carving of a Samurai General, with loose black shoulder length hair obscuring his face from the observer. He looks towards the death poem placed on the mat in front of him. A tando3 gripped in his right hand, the black sheath besides him, and a leopard-like Oni4 with thin darting yellow eyes sitting in the upper left of the print.  I do not know the name of the Samurai, but the carving is done by Yoshitoshi a master of different kind but whose efforts against the decadent modernisation of Japan have not gone unnoticed.
My mind has wandered to long. I must now commit to releasing myself from this sin of comfort. Frist off I must slowly rise off the pillow while kicking quilt until they are just covering my legs. After this there is a mental roll but I actually begin by standing and searching for my house coat. I may eat, but the one thing which always is done is the kettle is switched the moment subsequent to entering the kitchen.

Waiting for the bus there is always the hope that a group of kids who take the bus, will be late and miss it so more people can sit. It hasn’t happened yet. I like the mornings when it has rained throughout the night, the tones of the world get richer, the edges sharpened and become more alert.  From the edge of the bus shelter droplets fall then scatter-hop like a swarm of mites. The hiss of tires spinning on the wet road as the bus pulls up. The doors pull open and in a vulgar rush towards the door the kids push pass.
Then the bus journey and college happen, and how ever others and I feel towards these things is not the goal of this journal, it is not the breakdown of the “I for the other”5.
As I walk home it is always revitalizing despite weather conditions. Each step is made with intention, the unfolding of my thoughts are forthright. For in these moments each act and motion is there to negate the worries which build up throughout a day of social interaction. They also confirm what strengths there are to be learnt from others. On these walks of reflection the day of happenings becomes experience despite the slow learner I tend to be. On one walk I saw an elderly man, who smiled to himself, who swung his walking stick in front of him in a rhythmic pattern. He was walking at his own pace, that pace was truly his own and he did what he pleased with it. I on the other hand who is still young feel an urgency to go home, to begin things even if those things are yet undecided. But this man does not have this urgency in fact he most likely left home in earnestness because he has grasped something which belongs to him, his pace.
As I close the door behind me, generally the first thing which hits me is whatever odours are in the kitchen. Sometimes they are of the bin needing to be taken out, sometimes it’s the smell of breakfast or lunch, of cigarette smoke or citrusy cleaning products. Really the only days I notice nothing, I tend to move past the kitchen almost without taking any of it in. I prepare food which is frozen or the just add water sort of food. This is normally a highlight, because in the preparing it is me who is doing it, in the eating it is me who is eating what I myself prepared. It is a satisfying part of daily life. What makes it more so is there is no fear that somebody else won’t enjoy it, so all pressures of external judgment are removed. While eating I tend to either watch TV or read something. I like reading short poems because I can glance down while eating and try to figure them out.
The day continues with pacing and some confused thinking. These thoughts normally drift towards an ultimate of some kind and seeing myself in relationship to it. Two hours before bed I read and write something like this. The day comes to a close at twelve. 
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Drawn from “Sandokai” written by Shitou Xiqian(700-790), the translation referenced is from the online source www.sacred-texts.com               
2. Drawn from the poem “The Waking” by Theodore Roethke. Originally published 1953, in the collection of the same name published by Doubleday.
3. Samurai short sword used in ritual suicide.    
4. Japanese Demon, the origins of the word comes from to hid or conceal.


5. Philosophical term for a three part model of the psyche coined by the Russian philosopher Mikhail Bakhtin(1895 – 1975).

What I've Learned

For our last blog topic we have been asked to write about what we have learned while writing on this blog for the last few months so that is what this post is all about!

 I have thought about this for awhile trying to think what I actually have learned from this experience and it was a lot harder to think of than I initially thought. From maintaining a blog for the past few months I've found it is a lot harder than it looks, coming up with posts on new topics each week is not an easy task. Blogging was never something I have been interested in, so having this to do as part of my course was quite a challenge. I now understand why people write blogs, it's a way to express your thoughts to the world or find people interested in similar things as you, it can provide entertainment for others in turn that can make the blogger feel better, or for a business or company to communicate and receive feedback to their customers. They have proven to be more useful than I initially thought they would be.

Although, being a blogger is not something I have interest in I found it challenging and although I like a challenge this I also found that I have no interest in it, I never have liked English throughout school and things certainly haven't changed. Although this isn't for me I would encourage anyone thinking about setting up a blog to try it they might find that it's something they could love doing, but you must always be careful with what you post on the internet, something I have learned from this is how little people realise how unsafe internet can be, because once it's posted online it's permanent even if you delete it, so be safe and don't be sorry!
-Goodbye
                                             

Game Review

For one of our blog topics we were given the option to pick our own topic, for this I have chosen to write about a game I recently bought and love so far. This game in Fallout: New Vegas. Although this game was released back in 2008 and it never crossed my mind to pick it up then as it never seemed like a game I would enjoy, luckily because of the waiting there is now a Game of the Year Edition with every expansion to the game available and well worth the price.

 A little background on the game is, Fallout: New Vegas is a post-apocalyptic RPG it is set in the year 2281 in New Vegas (Las Vegas). It has been divided up between different factions, each one competing for control of the land with different groups rivalling with each other. You are a courier with the job of delivering a package to New Vegas but you are robbed and left for dead only to be rescued by a robot. From here you decide who your character is, what skills, traits etc. you possess. After this it is the player's decision. You decide who you support, where you go and what events occur from the decisions you make. In the game you are faced with many decisions each with different consequences, without giving away any spoilers to this game!

This game is not a very long game, maybe seven hours in total to complete the main quest, but with all the extras thrown in there is hours of entertainment with all the exploration you can do across the map and the great deal of optional quests you'll be kept busy. I would highly recommend this game to anyone; it's a good game that you should figure out for yourself!

Book Review: Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Background on Emily Brontë and Wuthering Heights

Wuthering Heights is written by the English novelist and poet Emily Brontë who was born in Thornton, West Yorkshire, England in 1818. Emily Brontë is the sister of Charlotte Brontë, the novelist and poet who wrote books such as Jane Eyre. Wuthering Heights is the only novel ever written by Emily Brontë, she wrote Wuthering Heights between October 1845 and June 1846, it was later published in 1847, under the name of Ellis Bell, Emily died a year later due to illness. This novel was later edited by her sister Charlotte with minor alterations and a second edition was then released in 1850.

When Wuthering Heights was initially released it received mixed reviews with critics considering it controversial due to the topics discussed in the novel as it challenged the ideals in society at that time, although it is now said to be a classic of English literature.

Brief Plot Description

Wuthering Heights is set in the 1800's in two houses; one called Wuthering Heights the other Thrushcross Grange. There are two main narrators Mr.Lockwood and Nelly. It begins with Mr.Lockwood who rented Thrushcross Grange, he decided to visit Wuthering Heights owned by Mr.Heathcliff. Upon arriving at Wuthering Heights a storm occurred outside leading to Mr.Lockwood falling ill. His house keeper Nelly then begins to tell him the story of these two houses and the families which once occupied them. 

Wuthering Heights was once occupied by the Earnshaws, Mr.Earnshaw, Hindley and Catherine. On a trip to Liverpool Mr.Earnshaw took home an orphan, Heathcliff. Catherine and Heathcliff quickly became close friends while Hindley and Heathcliff did not see eye to eye. A few years later, Hindley was sent to college but soon returns after the death of Mr. Earnshaw to become master of Wuthering Heights with his wife and son Hareton, declaring Heathcliff as his servant. Several months later while out Heathcliff and Catherine stumble upon Thrushcross Grange where they spy on the family inside, a must different home from what they were used to. Thrushcross Grange was occupied by the Linton family, Mr and Mrs.Linton, Edgar and Isabella.

A year later Edgar and Catherine grow closer, as she grows apart from Heathcliff. Soon after, Edgar and Catherine marry and reside in Thrushcross Grange and Heathcliff leaves. A few months pass and Heathcliff returns, as Hindley's life spirals downward, Heathcliff takes over Wuthering Heights, soon after Isabella and Heathcliff fall in love. Catherine falls ill and soon after has a child Cathy. Isabella then leaves and has a child Linton. 

From here a few years and months pass, and the feud between households continue, but this does not stop the relationships formed by the children. After a few years pass, Lockwood returns and Nelly continues the story to that present day.

Conclusion

Although, when first read this book is confusing due to the time gaps and jumping from one year back to a different year in a matter of sentences, it is a very interesting book to read and I would highly recommend reading it.

News U Course

I have recently completed the News U online course in Online Media Law. The course talks do's and don’ts of copyright important topics that everyone who has put themselves out there on the internet should know about. This course talks about copyright laws which in today’s society are broken everyday, worldwide. Copyright laws are there to protect original music, film, books, apps etc. making it difficult to track copy written material around the world which also varies from country to country increasing the difficultly of enforcing copyright laws.

The part of the course that I feel is the most interesting and most beneficial is privacy. Privacy applies to everyone, no matter what age you are or who you are, everyone needs privacy and everyone needs to understand how important privacy is. This area is most widely seen by public figures, as they are in the spotlight for the whole world to see. It should set an example to people of what can happen when things go wrong if they are not careful with what they share on the internet for everyone to see. Some people believe that because they are public figures that they do not deserve the same privacy, but they’re human to, privacy affects everyone. While there are laws concerning privacy, they are becoming obsolete due to the world changing and things like the internet and technology etc. becoming must more prevalent making the world a lot less private.

I would recommend for you to take this course as it is eye opening in terms of copyright and privacy which in today’s world is very relevant and important. Although a lot will be common sense there is still a lot you can learn from this course. Here is the link for the course if you are interested in taking it yourself: http://www.newsu.org/courses/online-media-law-basics-bloggers-and-other-publish

Movie Review

This weeks blog post is a movie review and the movie I'll be talking about is The Lego Movie as I recently saw this movie with a couple of friends from college. This movie is amazing even if it is a movie for children. The plot of this movie is about an ordinary guy called Emmett who is identified as "the special" and is the key to saving the Lego universe. Emmet and his friends go on an epic journey to stop the evil tyrant, Lord Business who is trying to destroy the world using kragle.

This movie is one of the best movies I have seen recently, it’s incredible and executed amazingly. I find this movie to have everything in it, from comedy,  to action, to a catchy song that everyone leaving the cinema will find themselves singing for days after they've gone to see it, it’s a movie not only children will enjoy but adults as well, with jokes for all ages thrown in. In my opinion Batman steals the show; he is the funniest character, with witty remarks, funny one-liners that people will be quoting weeks after they've seen the movie he would be the most memorable character. The cast of this movie is one that automatically explains why this movie is as good as it is with everyone from Liam Neeson (Bad Cop/Good Cop), Morgan Freeman (Vitruvius) to Jonah Hill (Green Lantern) and Will Ferrell (President Business) some of this cast are the best you'd find around these days; you can't really get much better. This movie contains every Lego character from superheroes to the classics, with Benny aka 1980-Something Space Guy, which is a 1980s-style minifigure, this movie really does have everything, even finishing with endless possibilities to sequels that I really do hope they'll make.

I would recommend anyone thinking about going to the cinema soon to see this, it’s well worth your money, even if it is a children’s movie.

And here's a little video I think you'll all enjoy.