Gacha Life-ing That Character

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Me after drawing overload.

After creating a 17-page long chapter for a comic strip (Finding My Own Way), I’m pretty darn beat. Creating a comic takes a lot of work and is pretty time-consuming, so after a lengthy session of comic booking and drawing like a woman possessed, one really needs a way to cool down and relax. How do I relax, you ask? (Well, you probably don’t ask, but it’s a great way to smoothly flowing from one topic to another, so I’ll answer that question anyway)

I relax with some Gacha Life. If you don’t know what that is, Gacha Life is an app/game that allows you to create little characters, then play about with our creations. You can pose them, add in backgrounds and props and even add speech bubbles. Essentially, it’s just a cute little dress-up game, but being a professional eejit, I have found a new use for this game. I pick a random character or person and set myself the challenge of trying to make that character using Gacha Life. This can be a bit tricky at times, but it’s a hell of a lot of fun. Anyway, let me introduce you to my latest attempts.

Levi from Attack on Titan:
IMG_0853Sadly, the app didn’t have vertical maneuvering equipment, so poor Levi has to do without. He still looks pretty badass though, but Levi just wouldn’t be Levi without fighting a Titan or two, so I posed him with one.

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And for all the Levi Fans and even made one of him doing a spot of cleaning.

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L from Death Note:
IMG_0856Playing Gacha Life just wouldn’t be fun if I didn’t try to make my favourite anime character, L. In case you’ve forgot who he is, I’ve posed L like we last see him in the anime.

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Hmm… he looks a little lonely, so let’s add in a little Ryuk I made earlier to keep him company.

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Ed from Fullmetal Alchemist:
IMG_0860I’m pretty proud of how this one turned out. I tried to make an Alphonse and Alex to keep Edward company, but sadly Gacha Life just didn’t have the things needed to make those characters. (Lunime has an anime version of Gacha Life called Gacha Studio, so I might download it and try again with it. I will make a sparkling mini He-Man someday).

Grell from Black Butler:
IMG_0861Another of my favourite characters. I really love Grell, unfortunately though the game didn’t have a chainsaw I got equip Grell with, so I had to make do with a handsaw. Grell still looks pretty menacing with it though. But you know Grell does need a little Bassy to play with, so I made Sebastian too.

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Freddy Krueger from Nightmare on Elm Street:
IMG_0886In case you’re not an anime fan, I also try to make non-anime characters like Freddy with the app. He may be a cute little chibi but I still wouldn’t want him appearing in my dreams.

Predator from Alien Vs Predator:
IMG_0888Okay, this one is a bit of the stretching, but it does sort of look like Predator.

Suga (Yoon-gi) from BTS:
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Lastly and cutest of all Yoongi, modelled on my favourite photo of him.

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This is my favourite photo

Since I’ll use any opportunity to add a little sweet Suga to a post, here one of Yoongi jamming.

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And one of him being the sleepy Yoongi we all love.

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Hope you enjoyed my Gacha Life characters; they were a hell of a lot of fun to make. There was a lot of failed attempts during the making of this post, including Goku, Colossal Titan, Alex Armstrong, Alphonse, Yuri from Yuri on ice, Dobby from Harry Potter and Edward Scissorhands. Sadly, Gacha Life just couldn’t capture the awesomeness of these characters, which is why I’ll be checking out Gacha Studio and try to bring you more amazing characters using it.

As always, Thanks for reading!

Top 10 Studio Ghibli Movies (Updated)

thumbnail_IMG_20190604_113740_084Lately I’ve been in a very Ghibli mood, a mood that consists of wanting to be awed by wonder, enchantment and cuteness and a hunger that can only be satisfied by watching Studio Ghibli films.  Back in the early days of this blog I made a post listing my top 10 favourite Ghibli films (click here to see that post). After re-watching most of my old favourites and a few Ghibli films I’d never seen before, my opinion on these movies have changed quite a lot. Don’t worry I still love Ghibli films very much and they still hold a big place in my heart (I wouldn’t be in a Ghibli mood otherwise). It’s just that over time and after a huge Ghibli binge-watch (best binge-watch ever), my preference has shifted and my top ten favourites is now very different from the first post I made.

So, for that reason its about time I updated this list and brought to you an updated version of

My Top 10 Favourite Studio Ghibli Films:

Honourable Mention- Pom Poko (↓4)
A lot of people seem not to like this film, personally I found the raccoons antics in this movie really funny. It can be a little crude at times, but looking pass that it’s quite a good film with a positive eco-friendly message to look after the environment and not destroy natural habitats. (Which is a bit of a running theme in Ghibli films)

thumbnail_640EA4E8-C292-49B0-8718-B16564FB153710: My Neighbour Totoro (NE= New Entry)
This is kind of a funny sort of a film. It’s very nice to watch but it doesn’t really have much of a storyline, it’s more like a series of happenings. I’ll try explaining the plot to show you what I mean, two little girls move to the countryside with their father. The house they move into turns out to be haunted by very cute harmless spirits. You learn the girls’ mother is in hospital with TB and can’t come home which upsets the girls. Their father has to work a lot, so the girls are pretty much left to run wild in the garden and surrounding area. Which leads to them meeting a giant cute bunny-bear like spirit called Totoro. The children hang out and play with Totoro, then the youngest one goes missing. Everyone panics and thinks she’s either gone by herself to visit her mother or drowned in a pond. Then the oldest girl gets on a cat bus and finds her younger sister and the movie then ends with them both eating corn in a tree.
As you can see it’s a bit of a strange film with a very loose plot, which has led to a lot of theories being made about what actually is happening in this film. From suggesting its references toward a real-life disappearance of a school girl, to people theorising that the girls actually die at the end of the film and that’s why they’re sitting in a tree (because apparently spirit rest in trees at night). However, it’s incredibly cute and sweet, which is what makes the film so enjoyable (you could quite possibly get tooth ache from watching it).

9: The Tale of Princess Kaguya (NE)
The animation style of this film so very different from other Ghibli films, it looks more like a hand painted moving talking watercolour, than the typical Ghibli art style. It’s subtle colour scheme and intriguing storyline makes it very relaxing and beautiful to watch. It does have a lot of religious and mythological references, which some mightn’t like. But if you’re interested in mythology and don’t mind the odd religious reference, its quite a nice watch. Like most Ghibli films it also has a positive message, which is to not chase after others idea of happiness or force your idea of happiness upon others (including your children and other family members). Basically, the film’s message is about achieving true happiness.

8: The Secret World of Arrietty (↑1)
This film has moved up one place in this list mainly because of its breathtakingly beautiful scenes and animation. In the last list, I think I underappreciated how amazing and stunning the animation was (probably because now I know the level of work that goes into creating scenes like those in the film). Story wise I prefer this version of the borrowers over the 1997 borrowers films. It’s very heart-warming and lovely to watch and puts a nice wee spin on the concept of borrowers.

7: Castle in The Sky (↑3)
Castle in The Sky has moved up quite a bit in this list. In the last list I forgot about the sense of wonder this film creates and about the sky pirates. Ghibli sky pirates are a rather likable odd bunch. At first, they seem like bad news but as the film goes on, they become goofier and seem more like a big bunch of softies. Especially, Dola who is a great character and is like a kooky, really cool grandmother that takes no guff and is tough as nails but is still kind at heart. The sky pirates all add a little bit of comedy and relatability to what is already a sweet and mysterious film with beautiful animation.

6: Kiki’s Delivery Service (↑2)
I re-watched Kiki’s Delivery Service with my nephew and he was outrage at behaviour in this film, which made me realise how bananas this film actually is. My nephew was completely horrified that parents would let a 13-year-old go off by themselves and in complete shock at Kiki breaking the stranger danger rule over and over again and getting in a car with a stranger. You would have sworn he was watching a horror movie instead of a Ghibli film. His overreaction and ranting towards this film made watching it so much funnier. But in saying that he does have a point, this film is sort of messed up and the more you think about Kiki does put herself in quite a few situations that would be incredibly dangerous in the real world (even for an adult). Anyway, seeing Kiki’s Very Dangerous Delivery Service from a new point of view, made me appreciate how surreal the Ghibli universe actually is (there is so many Ghibli films where children wander of by themselves and do really dangerous things and everyone acts spookily happy about it), which is why it was given a higher place on this list. (Funniest thing is my nephew says he liked this film, but like Ponyo better. He really loves Ponyo)

thumbnail_90DDF0C2-ADBB-47CC-B77D-4C830420E57E5: Ponyo (↓1)
Ponyo is a very cute and magical Ghibli film that really has the awe factor. With its beautiful use of colour and breath-taking animation, it’s really enjoyable and hypnotic just to look at. Story wise, its incredibly sweet and just plain adorable. It’s the kind of film that would warm even the coldest of hearts. No matter how many times I see this movie I never get sick of it. The only reason it fell a spot on this list, was to make room for a film I’ve only seen for the first time recently.

4: When Marnie was There (NE)
The best way to describe this film is a mysterious ghost story that shows the beauty of friendship. There is just so much twist and turns in this film and it’s just so mysterious. It will constantly keep you guessing and glued to the screen. At one point I didn’t have a baldy (a clue) what was happening and found myself completely enthralled in the film, very eagerly wanting to know what the fudge was happening. The ending of this film is very bitter sweet, it’s lovely and warms the cockles of the heart but is also really sad and might even make you shed a tear. It has a little more of a mature feel to it than other Ghibli films, but all around it’s an amazing film and one definitely worth watching. I regret not watching it sooner.

3: Spirited Away (↓1)
Spirited Away is a film that most anime and Ghibli fans will have seen at least once in their life. It holds a special place in a lot of people’s hearts and it’s not hard to see why. It’s so magical and cute and very different from anything you’ve probably ever seen. For me its where my love of anime and Ghibli began. As a child I was so innocent and naïve that I didn’t even know anime was a thing. Weird thing is I had watched quite a lot of anime before this film (Pokémon, Digimon, Beyblade, Yu-Gi-Oh! and even Princess Mononoke), but never caught on that they were anime. To me they were just cartoons the same as all the others I loved to watch. It wasn’t until my Dad put a film on the TV (which was Spirited Away) and the announcer called it an Anime film from Japan, that I know there was such thing as anime. I was so taken by Spirited Away, that I wanted to know more about what anime was and from there my love of anime blossomed. Which is why it’s in the top 3.

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I love Turnip-head so much, that I redrew him.

2: Howl’s Moving Castle (↑1)
Glob I love the sassy old lady power in this movie. Howl’s Moving Castle is one of those Ghibli films that really deliver on that magical mysterious feel. Its story contains so much mystery that on the first watch, it’ll constantly have you guessing about so many things like Howl, the castle, the fire demon Calcifer, turnip head and what on earth is going on in this film. This mixed with its magical creatures and enchanted objects and devices, gives a real feel of awe and wonder. On top of this, it tells a heart-warming love story that teaches there is more to being loved than a pretty face. Its animation is absolutely beautiful and has so many cool little details which is why it’s my favourite film animation wise. All round Howl’s Moving Castle is a wonderful Ghibli film.

1: Princess Mononoke
Although everything else in this list has changed, my no. 1 favourite Ghibli film has stayed the same. It was the first Ghibli film I had ever seen (even though I didn’t know it was at the time), so it’s kind of special to me. But I think that’s the same with everyone’s first Ghibli film. Your first Ghibli film is usually the one that makes you fall in love with Ghibli and opens the door to the wonderful world of Ghibli. So, it’s not hard to see why most people’s first Ghibli film is their favourite.
First time I watched Princess Mononoke, I was completely dumbfounded, in a state of pure astonishment and amazement. It was like nothing I had ever seen before. I instantly fell in love with its beautiful animation style and was really taking by it. I remember the first time watching this film, trying to slowly edge closer and closer to the TV, to really take in its beautiful scenery. Then having sofa cushions flung at me by my siblings and having the snot beat out of me with one for blocking their view. Though I didn’t fully understand the films plot or symbolism as a child, I still loved it and enjoyed every minute of it. As an adult, I continue to love this film and have re-watched it so many times. It’s just so amazing and unique, it really is a great Ghibli film.

Hope you enjoyed this Ghibli top 10 update. The first time I posted a Ghibli top 10, I made a top 10 Non-Ghibli anime film list, to link in with that post. I haven’t decided yet whether to update that list too, but if people are interested in seeing that update, I’ll update it too.

As always Thanks for reading and if you have a favourite Ghibli film, don’t be afraid to tell me about it in the comments below. I’d love to hear about it.

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Bird Box

I’m a little late of the mark with this post, but Bird Box is a film I’ve wanted to talk about for a while. But before we get further into this post, there’ll probably (most likely) be SPOILERS in this post, so if you haven’t seen it yet and don’t want it spoiled, you might want to stop reading.

Back to the movie, all in all the film itself was okay. It isn’t the greatest film I’ve ever seen but it’s watchable and has an interesting concept. However, when rating apocalypse type films I like to consider how difficult it would be to survive them. Sadly, for Bird Box it would be very easy for a particular large group of people to survive and I don’t mean the mentally ill people in the movie or the fully blind. But before I explain, let’s have a quick summary of Bird Box’s concept for those who are unfamiliar with the movie.

thumbnail_20917FB7-E651-4538-BE7D-E9D29AFF3F15Essentially in the film there is a monster on the loose that causes people to kill themselves if they look at it. This leads to people wearing blindfolds to avoid catching sight of the monster. However, the monster has a different effect on the mentally unwell and they see it as the most beautiful thing they’ve ever set eyes on. Which in turn, causes them to have an overwhelming desire to run around pulling off blindfolds and trying to force people to look at the monster (causing the victim to die from doing so). It’s a pretty interesting concept, but when you give it a bit more thought it sort of falls in on itself. Considering you have to see the monster for it to have an effect, there is another rather large group of people (other than the completely blind), that could easily survive Bird Box, which quite a few of you and myself belong too.

So, what is this incredible superpower that protects from the monster? Well, its probably wouldn’t be considered a superpower in a normal situation, but in the Bird Box world it pretty much is. Anyway, this superpower is poor eyesight. By this I don’t mean complete blindness, I mean eyesight just poor enough that you can’t navigate this world without wearing your glasses. Let me explain more.

Something I’ve never really mentioned on this blog is that without glasses I have dirt poor eyesight (everything’s a blurry mess of fuzzy shapes and colours and without glasses I can’t even identify family members. I also tend not to draw myself wearing glasses. Not because of vanity, it’s because I’ve had to wear glasses all the time since 8years old and forget I’m wearing them). From doing quite the remarkable Mr. Magoo impression while not wearing glasses, I’ve discovered a monster sized loophole in Bird Box’s plot that would mean a rather large percent of mankind could survive the Bird Box apocalypse.

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It probably seems obvious at this point, how a poor sighted person could survive Bird Box, but just for fun I’ll go into detail. Basically, all they’d have to do to survive is remove their glasses (yeah, it’s really as simple as that). If you can’t even make out objects 2 feet in front of your face, it’d be impossible to see a monster standing on the other side of the street or sitting up in a tree. Let’s just face it, with dirt poor eyesight the monster could probably walk up and headbutt you and you still wouldn’t be able to see it. So, you’d be very much immune to the monster’s powers (you still wouldn’t be immune to walking into a lamp post or tripping over a cat, though).

But wait what about those crazed monster worshiper people, you ask? What if they attack you, forcibly put back on your glasses and force you to look at the monster?  Well, here’s the hard part. After you remove your glasses, you’re going to have to break them into tiny pieces, including the lenses, then have a cry over how expensive those glasses were.

thumbnail_20917FB7-E651-4538-BE7D-E9D29AFF3F15After that you’d be pretty safe from the monster worshipers too, because even if the monster worshipers forcibly took you to the pharmacy to get a pair of those over the counter glasses, those glasses won’t make a button of difference. They’re more like a reading glasses than seeing glasses, so you’ll still be able to see bug all. It’s also highly unlikely that there’d be an optician amongst the monster worshipers to provide you with proper glasses, so you’d still be immune to the monster.

thumbnail_FF1830A8-FC1F-4DF0-B002-B4E5321DA78AI know the monster worshipers are still quite dangerous, they’re heavily armed in the film and could attack you for not loving the monster. So, for an added safety precaution you might want to put your acting skills to the test and pretend to be one of them, if you bump into monster worshipers in the Bird Box apocalypse (to be honest, they all seem pretty high on monster so it probably wouldn’t be that difficult to fool them. Just compliment the monster or comment on how beautiful it is and they wouldn’t notice your not one of them).

thumbnail_FF1830A8-FC1F-4DF0-B002-B4E5321DA78AOverall, I wasn’t very taken by Bird Box and think it was slightly over hyped. Right enough, a monster that causes death by just looking at it, is scary and could be seen as fantastic symbolism. But with a sieve-like plot, it loses its impact. The more you think about this film the more plot holes you find. For example, it didn’t matter if the babies seen the monster because they don’t have the ability or understanding to hurt themselves. Also, being in a situation where a deadly monster seems to be always present just waiting for its chance to strike you dead, would in itself be enough to drive a person to madness, therefore the monster would lose its deadly effect. Considering all this I would only recommend watching Bird Box if you’re curious/interested about its concept. Just don’t expect too much from it.

Rating: 2.5/5

Hope you enjoyed this post, it might seem a bit of a strange way to review this film, but I thought it’d be nice to shake things up and add a bit of fun to the post.

As always thanks for reading!

The Hunger Games (Harry Potter Edition Part 2- Dobby’s Story)

It has been so much fun writing these stories based of the results from the Hunger Games simulator. Writing Dobby’s story was slightly more challenging due to the way he speaks, but it has been the most fun to write (mainly because Dobby is adorable and my favourite Harry Potter character). So much fun in fact, that I got a little carried away and pulled a picture of Dobby into Autodesk Sketchbook (a digital drawing app) and edited the photo to give Dobby a sister elf named Marshmallow. This will be the last in this series so I hope you enjoy, but before we get started let’s recap on the tributes.IMG_0146IMG_0151

(Warning: The simulator made Dobby do and see a lot of disturbing things in this story. It also made him rather evil at times, which is so ironically funny)

The Tale of a Brave House Elf

The Reaping
Dobby never considered Dobby a brave elf, but when the newspaper told Dobby the reaping was coming to District 12. Dobby had to learn to be brave quickly. The day of the reaping came around very fast and being a proud free house elf, Dobby put on the best clothes. A sock Dobby was given by Dobby’s good friend Harry Potter. Then Dobby hurried out the door and raced to the town square, to attend the reaping.

Dobby was a nervous elf, Dobby’s knees knocked together as Dobby stood in line. All the young house elves were gathered in the town square. All stood in perfect rows, facing the stage as they waited for the results of the reaping. Dobby was very scared so closed Dobby’s eyes and preyed the sorting hat would not choose Dobby’s name. The sorting hat clears his throat and the square fell eerily quiet. It brought its mouth close to the microphone and in a loud clear voice it revealed the name of the first tribute chosen for the games. “Kreacher” the hat yelled out. Kreacher was not very kind, Dobby even once got in a fight with Kreacher, so Dobby was pleased with the sorting hat’s first choice.

IMG_0144The sorting hat then shouted out the name of the second Tribute, “Marshmallow”. Dobby’s blood ran cold. Marshmallow is Dobby’s precious little sister. Dobby seen the peacekeepers grab little Marshmallow by the arm. Dobby felt all panicked, Dobby could not let them harm little Marshmallow and force her to fight in the dangerous hunger games. Dobby must stop them. Dobby felt anger then suddenly got very brave and shouted at the top of Dobby’s lungs “Get your filthy wizarding hands of sister Marshmallow. You shall not harm Marshmallow. Dobby volunteers to take Marshmallow’s place”. Before Dobby could utter another word, Dobby was grabbed and shoved on a train with Kreacher and shipped of to the hunger games.

The Beginning of the Games
Dobby trained very hard and was so pleased, when Dobby learnt that Harry Potter was in the games, too. Time moved too quickly and soon Dobby was standing on a podium waiting for the sound of the horn to signal the start of the hunger games. Dobby felt scared, but most scared for dear friend Harry Potter. Dobby does not want to fight friends but must if Dobby wants to stay alive.

The horn sounded, but Dobby was so frightened and froze on the podium. Dobby looked for Harry Potter and seen him running away from the Cornucopia. Dobby then looked for Kreacher and seen him fighting with prior young master Draco Malfoy and that scary lady Bellatrix Lestrange. Bellatrix triumphantly and killed them both. This made Dobby even more afraid. Dobby scanned the Cornucopia once more and seen Harry Potter’s horrid cousin, Dudley Dursley gathers as much food as he could carry. Dobby decided to get some food, too and ran towards the Cornucopia, but before Dobby could get close, Dobby seen Peter Pettigrew break poor Hagrid’s nose for a basket of bread. Dobby’s fled from the Cornucopia in fear, but was nearly squashed by the falling bodies of Luna Lovegood and Neville Longbottom, who had both fed each other poison berries.

Day 1
Dobby was all alone now in the deep dark woods, but knowing sister Marshmallow is safe at home keeps Dobby going. Earlier, Dobby seen Harry Potter and was about to call out to him, when Dobby seen Harry Potter was with his teacher Severus Snape. The two started fighting so Dobby ducked behind a tree to avoid being seen. Dobby was about to help Harry Potter, when Dobby noticed Harry Potter had defeated Severus Snape and decided to spare his life. Dobby thought it might be best to stay always from Harry Potter for now, so kept on walking through the woods. Soon Dobby came across Dudley Dursley with his pile of food. Dobby waited until Dudley Dursley wasn’t looking and stole his food.
Dobby then heard 5 cannon shots in the distance and looked up at the sky to see the faces of the fallen tributes.IMG_0148Night fell, Dobby could hear Dudley Dursley and Peter Pettigrew telling each other stories about themselves. Dobby fears Dudley Dursley will want revenge on Dobby for stealing his food, so searched for somewhere else to rest. After walking for a while Dobby heard the comforting sound of Harry Potter quietly humming, so decided this was good place to rest for the night. As Dobby sits on the forest floor, Dobby thought about winning the games and returning home to little sister Marshmallow, a hero.

Day 2
Dobby awoken to the sound of old Master Lucius Malfoy screaming and went to investigate. From a distance, Dobby could see that old master Lucius Malfoy had injured himself. Dobby found this very funny and laugh until the sock Harry Potter gave Dobby, fell off.

Dobby decided to walk around today, but Dobby bumped into Remus Lupin. Dobby remembered that Dobby doesn’t much like Remus and thinks about killing him. Remus Lupin must have noticed the look of blood lust in Dobby’s eyes, because he diverted Dobby’s attention by shouting “look over there, the dark lord is beating Lucius Malfoy with his own shoe”, then Remus ran away. Disappointed Dobby turned to chase after Remus Lupin, but then Dobby seen Sirius Black being attacked by that crazy cat lady Dolores Umbridge. However, to Dobby’s displeasure Sirius Black managed to escape and they both survived.

Before Dobby could quench this new found feeling of blood lust, the Arena was filled with Carnivorous squirrels that start to attack the tributes. Dobby ran as fast as Dobby’s little elf legs would move. Dobby looked to the right and seen that evil snake Nagini and old master Lucius Malfoy was running away from the Carnivorous squirrels together. The squirrels easily outsmart the two, separating them from each other and killing them both.

After seeing the killing power of the squirrels, Dobby quickened the pace, catching up with Dolores Umbridge and Dudley Dursley, who were previously running at full speed in front of him. Dudley suddenly cried out from the pain of leg cramp and couldn’t run any further. Dolores Umbridge, no longer being able to see Dudley in agony, killed Dudley Dursley so that he didn’t have to also suffer the anguish of being bitten of death by squirrels.

Dobby picked up the pace once again, to out run the Carnivorous squirrels. Up ahead Dobby seen Hagrid, very out of breath and struggling to run. Dobby remembered Hagrid was good to Dobby so shouted words of encouragement, but Hagrid fell to his knee and could run no further. Dobby’s heart felt like it might shatter, as Dobby looked at friendly Hagrid on his knee and thought about the horror Hagrid would suffer when the squirrels caught up with him. With teary eyes, Dobby killed the friendly Hagrid to save him from having to suffer a truly horrific death.

Dobby ran fast and somehow survived the Carnivorous squirrel attack, as well as Severus Snape, Remus Lupin, Sirius Black, Alastor Moody, Albus Dumbledore, Bellatrix Lestrange, Hermione Granger, Peter Pettigrew, Ron Weasley and Harry Potter. Dobby heard 7 cannon shots in the distance and with a heavy heart looked up to the sky at Dobby’s fallen friends and tributes.IMG_0147 (1)Night fell again, distraught and traumatised by today’s events Alastor Moody begged Dobby to kill him. Dobby did not want any more innocent blood on Dobby’s elf hands so refused, keeping Alastor Moody alive.

Day 3
Despite the events of the day before, Dobby had a quiet day. Dobby got a supply pod filled with medical supplies from an unknown sponsor. In Dobby’s heart Dobby knows it was from dear sister Marshmallow. Later that day, Dobby noticed Remus Lupin stalking Harry Potter. Dobby regrets not killing Remus Lupin.

Night quickly came again, Dobby is convinced Remus Lupin is pure evil, after seeing him share a shelter with that wicked lady Bellatrix Lestrange. In the distance, Dobby heard the voice of Hermione Granger begging Severus Snape to kill her. Thankfully, Severus Snape refused and kept Hermione Granger alive. Dobby could no longer cope with the stress and turmoil of the games, so screamed out a despairing cry for help. Sadly, Dobby’s cries of anguish were not answered and no one came to Dobby’s aid.

Day 4
Day 4 in the games is a bit of a blur for Dobby. Dobby can briefly remember seeing Sirius Black attacking Dolores Umbridge, but thinks she escaped. Dobby also thinks Dobby seen Alastor Moody falling and injuring himself. Dobby thought this was very funny. Later that day Dobby seen smoke in the distance, but thought is was better not to investigate.

A little after that, Dobby thought Dobby had lost the plot and that Dobby’s eyes were playing tricks. Dobby was sitting near a cliff and seen Harry Potter having a knife fight with his friend Hermione Granger. Dobby swears Dobby’s mind was being tricky, because next thing Dobby seen was Harry Potter pushing Hermione Granger off the cliff. Dobby is sure Harry Potter would never do such a thing, but then Dobby’s heard a cannon shot in the distance and looks up at the sky.IMG_0149
Dobby’s good friend Harry Potter is scary. Dobby thinks it would be good to stay away from him for now.

Night fell, nights in the games are very noisy now. Dobby heard many things while trying to get to sleep. Dobby could hear evil Remus Lupin and Bellatrix Lestrange telling each other stories about themselves, in the distance. Dobby could also hear Peter Pettigrew and Sirius Black fighting, a short distance away. Dobby thinks Peter Pettigrew won but spared Sirius Black life. Dobby was also given more medical supplies from an unknown sponsor.

Day 5
Nothing much happened today. Dobby spent the whole day collecting tasty fruit from a tree and filled Dobby’s little house elf belly. At night Dobby was a bad house elf, Dobby destroyed teacher Severus Snape’s supplies while he was sleeping. Dobby will have to punish himself later, but for now Dobby will listen to the cheerfully singing of Ron Weasley, Head mater Albus Dumbledore, and Peter Pettigrew, in the distance.

Day 6
Dobby woke up very hungry and decided to go hunting. Dobby was walking along the riverbank when Dobby seen the nice plump juicy legs of Dolores Umbridge and made a plan to sneak up behind Dolores Umbridge and take a bite out of her delicious looking calves. But before Dobby could carry out this brilliant plan, Ron Weasley appeared out of nowhere and speared Dolores Umbridge through the abdomen. Dobby was not pleased with losing Dobby’s supper, but fears Ron Weasley would kill Dobby too, if he seen Dobby. Dobby then heard a cannon shot and looked up. IMG_0150
The night was very busy and Dobby witnessed some very bad things. Dobby was minding Dobby’s own business when Peter Pettigrew appeared in front of Dobby. Before Dobby could do anything, Remus Lupin stabbed Peter Pettigrew in the back. Dobby quickly ran away in case Dobby was next on evil Remus Lupin list.

Shortly after that Dobby seen Sirius Black die while he was trying to escape the arena. Dobby’s ordeal did not end there, while searching for a safe place to sleep, Dobby seen Harry Potter severely injury his teacher Severus Snape, then put Severus Snape out of his misery. Dobby was very sad seeing his good friend Harry Potter do awful things. Then Dobby remembered the awful thing Dobby nearly did early that day. Dobby cried big heavy wet tears, staining Dobby’s face. Dobby continued to cry until falling asleep.

Day 7
The cornucopia was refilled with food, supplies, weapons, and items from the tributes’ families. Dobby could not stand being hungry one second longer, so team up with Bellatrix Lestrange, Ron Weasley and Alastor Moody to get supplies and weapons. Later that day Dobby also received explosives from an unknown sponsor.

Dobby thought the day was going well, until Dobby witnessed head master Albus Dumbledore scream out “I cannot handle these circumstances” then throw himself on a landmine. Dobby heard 4 more cannon shots and looked to the sky.IMG_0154That night Dobby felt very awkward when Dobby stumbled upon Remus Lupin snuggling with Alastor Moody. To make things worse, at the same time Dobby was creeped out by the quiet humming of that scary lady Bellatrix Lestrange, coming from close by.
Dobby has done and seen some horrible things in the hunger games and is beginning to question Dobby’s sanity.

Day 8
Today was the saddest for Dobby, early that morning Dobby seen his good friend Harry Potter arming a landmine. Dobby decided to loudly greet Harry Potter to grab his attention. This did not go as well as Dobby planned. Dobby’s sudden loud voice caused Harry Potter to jump, accidentally detonating the landmine, killing Harry Potter.

Hearing Dobby’s cries of despair, Alastor Moody, Bellatrix Lestrange and Ron Weasley rushed towards Dobby’s location. Most likely, hoping to put Dobby out of Dobby’s misery. However, they do not get the chance to, as from the corner of the eye Dobby noticed evil Remus Lupin holding a detonator. Before Dobby could react, evil Remus Lupin sets off an explosive, killing all other tributes including brave house elf Dobby.

 

5 cannon shots ring out in the distance. The night sky was lit up with the faces of the fallen tributes and amongst them was the face of our brave house elf Dobby. An elf who died to save his little sister Marshmallow.IMG_0153

The winner of the hunger games is Remus Lupin from District 6!IMG_0152

Statisticsgame hp2 (2)

This was a really long post, so if you made it this far, hope you enjoyed it and thank you so much for reading.

The Hunger Games (Anime Duo Edition)

Something rather unfortunate happened last weekend. Don’t worry there wasn’t a reaping and I’m not partaking in the hunger games, I just twisted my shoulder in a manner no shoulder should be twisted and haven’t been able to draw. But let’s not let that stop us having fun over on this blog. Instead of the usual art or review type post, I thought I’d let you all in on a little weird thing I do for a bit of fun and a laugh. Which is putting characters and people through a hunger games simulator. Before you panic and think I’m hosting the hunger games in my back garden, let me explain what the hunger games simulator is. Basically, it’s a simulator available on the internet where you enter 24 names (12 teams of 2) and it produces a hunger games story for you (The hunger games, is a movie where 2 young people from each of the 12 Districts are forced to partake in a survival game, that only ends when there is one participant left alive).

As you can imagine, you can get some really strange but entertaining stories when you enter fictional characters into these simulators. As a lot of the people who follow this blog enjoy anime, I thought why not start The Hunger Games of with an Anime Duo Edition. To add my own personal touch to the story I’ve made my own tributes, fallen tributes and winner sheets for this story (since they could be made using one hand and since the simulator’s sheet weren’t very good quality) and I’ve added some commentary to the story, which is in brackets.

So, let’s begin the game and may the odds be ever in your favour:
(Warning: These simulators can be very violent and dark at times and may trigger those of a sensitive nature)

The Hunger Games (Anime Duo Edition) Tributes:IMG_0110

IMG_0111

I can’t pronounce the title Durarara, so I nicknamed the anime Rara

The Cornucopia
As the tributes stand on their podiums, the horn sounds.

WolfwoodAsh, and Goku work together to get as many supplies as possible.

Migi kills Ed with his own weapon. (Glob, the irony. A parasite infected hand kills another tribute with their automail hand. Warned you it can get violent)

Sebastian runs into the cornucopia and hides.

Hawk rips a mace out of L‘s hands.

Shinichi finds a bag full of explosives.

Levi bashes Ciel‘s head against a rock several times. (Levi isn’t playing around. Sebastian definitely won’t be pleased with Levi, laying a hand on his young master. Levi better watch his back)

Light grabs a jar of fishing bait while Bulma gets fishing gear.

Shizuo takes a handful of throwing knives.

Yuri, Kaneki , Meliodas, Al,  Touka , Vash  and Eren runs away from the Cornucopia. (I would run away too in this situation)

Pikachu grabs a jar of fishing bait while Celty gets fishing gear.

Victor stays at the cornucopia for resources. (I have a feeling Victor isn’t going to last very long, considering Sebastian is hiding in there)

Day 1
SebastianLEren, and Celty hunt for other tributes. (ooh that’s one hell of a team. No one will stand a chance against them 4)

Goku diverts Levi‘s attention and runs away.

Ash hunts for other tributes.

Migi receives medical supplies from an unknown sponsor. (Killing Ed must have not been as easy as we thought)

VictorBulmaAl, and Meliodas hunt for other tributes.

Wolfwood receives a hatchet from an unknown sponsor.

Shizuo tends to Shinichi‘s wounds. (aww that’s so kind)

Touka tries to sleep through the entire day. (Good plan. If you sleep people will think your dead and leave you be)

Hawk searches for a water source.

Pikachu runs away from Vash.

Kaneki sets an explosive off, killing Light, and Yuri. (oh no! Not Yuri, Kaneki how could you)

4 cannon shots can be heard in the distance. The following tributes have fallen: IMG_0112

Night 1
Ash, Meliodas, and Al sleep in shifts.

Shizuo loses sight of where he is.

Goku defeats Kaneki in a fight, but spares his life. (Kaneki doesn’t deserve mercy for exploding poor wee Yuri like that)

Celty receives clean water from an unknown sponsor.

Hawk sets up camp for the night.

Shinichi, Bulma, and Vash cheerfully sing songs together. (Nothing like a good old sing song to forget about being murdered in your sleep)

Levi sees a fire, but stays hidden.

Migi goes to sleep. (That’s so Migi)

L, Pikachu, and Eren sleep in shifts.

Sebastian quietly hums. (Sounds so menacing)

Victor is unable to start a fire and sleeps without warmth.

Touka dies from hypothermia. (I guess sleeping all day wasn’t a good of idea after all)

Wolfwood tries to treat his infection.

Day 2
Shizuo attacks Goku, but he manages to escape.

Migi defeats Wolfwood in a fight, but spares his life.

LVash, and Levi track down and kill Eren. (Betrayed by Levi, dang)

Sebastian is pricked by thorns while picking berries.

Kaneki travels to higher ground.

Pikachu and Al hunt for other tributes. (Aww that’s the cutest team ever)

Shinichi collects fruit from a tree.

Victor constructs a shack.

Bulma sprains her ankle while running away from Hawk. (Hahaha, I could so see that happening)

Celty dies from thirst. (She received water just the night before, the irony)

Ash receives fresh food from an unknown sponsor.

Meliodas hunts for other tributes.

Arena Event
A swarm of tracker jackers invades the arena. (Yeah, everyone is truly fringed now)

Vash and Shizuo run out of places to run and are stung to death.

Shinichi knocks Al unconscious and leaves him there as bait. (Oh glob that’s so evil)

While running away from the tracker jackers, Hawk grabs Goku and throws him to the ground. (Hawk is really scary in this game)

Pikachu slowly dies from the tracker jacker toxins. (Aww poor Pikachu)

Sebastian, Bulma, Victor, Ash, Levi, Meliodas, Wolfwood, and L survives.

Migi is stung to death.

Kaneki survives. (Glob darn it, I was hoping he’d be stung to death)

9 cannon shots can be heard in the distance. The following tributes have fallen:IMG_0114

Night 2
passes out from exhaustion. (That happened even before he entered the game)

Ash quietly hums.

Levi receives an explosive from an unknown sponsor.

Kaneki ambushes Shinichi and kills him. (It this point I think we can agree that Kaneki is pure evil)

Wolfwood loses sight of where he is.

Victor starts a fire.

Bulma questions her sanity. (As do I)

Meliodas convinces Hawk to snuggle with him. (So cute)

Sebastian starts a fire. (Let’s hope it not like the book of circus)

Day 3
Wolfwood explores the arena. (At least he’s not lost anymore)

L, Ash, Hawk, and Meliodas hunt for other tributes.

Sebastian unknowingly eats toxic berries. (What is with Sebastian and berries? First, he pricks himself picking them, now he’s eating poison berries. You’d think he’d learn to leave them alone)

Bulma sprains her ankle while running away from Levi. (Both Bulma’s ankles are sprained now, she isn’t surviving much longer)

Victor scares Kaneki off. (WTF How?)

Arena Event
The remaining tributes begin to hallucinate. (This should be interesting)

Hawk eats a scorpion, thinking it is a delicate dessert. (That’s like something Hawk would do)

Wolfwood hugs a tracker jacker nest, believing it to be a pillow. (ouch, so unfortunate)

mistakes Kaneki for a bear and kills him. (finally, revenge for Yuri)

Meliodas, Bulma, L, Ash, Levi and Victor survives.

5 cannon shots can be heard in the distance. The following tributes have fallen:IMG_0115

Night 3
Victor receives medical supplies from an unknown sponsor.

Ash destroys Bulma’s supplies while she is asleep.

Meliodas thinks about winning. (Oh cocky, everyone better watch out)

Levi sees a fire, but stays hidden.

questions his sanity. (Only now? Pretty sure you were dancing on the border of insanity before the games)

The feast
The cornucopia is replenished with food, supplies, weapons, and memoirs from the tributes’ families.

Levi decides not to go to The Feast.

BulmaAshL, and Meliodas form a suicide pact, killing themselves. (Holy cheese on a cracker, that’s so dark. The hunger games are no picnic, but glob I wasn’t expecting that)

Victor decides not to go to The Feast.

Day 4
Levi severely injures Victor and leaves him to die. (Victor really stood no chance against Levi)

5 cannon shots can be heard in the distance. The following tributes have fallen:IMG_0113

The winner is Levi from District 3!IMG_0116

Statisticsgame 3

Hope you enjoyed the story; the simulator isn’t usually as dark as that, it’s normally a lot more comical (it’s really the luck of the draw which type of story you get). At best I won’t be able to draw for at least a week, so I plan on doing a few of these. Maybe a Harry Potter edition or other movie themed one and to keep it interesting I’ll put a spin the story delivery part.

As always Thanks for reading.

The Wailing

00ba897d-bbf6-4493-be80-b0b3a78f181cThis week something terribly unfortunate happened. I was in the middle of creating some digital art for this post, when suddenly the app crashed and stopped working. After a few panic-stricken minutes, I finally got the app to open again to be met by the horror that the app had wiped itself clean and deleted everything, including the piece I was working on (literally could have cried). Over 200 digital drawings gone and all the brush settings reset. The only thing to remember them by is thumbnails saved on my computer and the saddest thing is there where pieces I hadn’t completed yet. They’re just thumbnails now that can never be finished or opened on the app as a digital drawing again. They will forever be incomplete. So, what has this got to do with this review? Well, it mostly affects the art work for the review, because now all the brushes have reset back to their default settings, which makes them kind of awkward to use. I will eventually get the brush settings back to the way I like them, but that’s going to involve a lot of trial and error. In the meantime, I hope you still enjoy my more resourceful approach to digital art.

Getting back to the film, The Wailing is a South Korean horror movie about a police officer (Jong-goo) who is investigating a series of strange violent attacks and murders, that all involve the offender falling ill with a mysterious sickness before committing the crime. Soon into the investigation Jong-goo hears rumours of witchcraft and a terrifying naked man attacking people in the woods and eating raw flesh. Things rapidly go downhill for Jong-goo when his young daughter contracts the mysterious illness and doctors tell him they can do nothing. This leads to Jong-goo enlisting the help of a shaman and things take a bit of a demonic turn. Will the shaman be able to cure Jong-goo’s daughter or will it all end in tragedy?

The Wailing completely took me by surprise, I really wasn’t expecting it to be as good as it was. I went into this movie expecting it to be just another demon horror movie. The sort of film where a demon shows up and torments a family then possesses someone. Everyone freaks out and they call for the Padre or a paranormal fighting duo to come exercise the demon. You know, the type that are filled with jump scares and clichés and sends your heart racing. Luckily, The Wailing has a little more to it than that and is not your run of the mill demon themed horror movie.

You may be thinking now, what does this film have that all other demon movies don’t have? The answer to that question is suspense, breath-taking scenery and a rather unique storyline with one hell of a plot twist. The Wailing is a bit of a slow starter, but when it gets going glob does it suck you in. Between wanting to see if Jong-goo solves the mystery and finds the true cause of the sickness and sitting in suspense, waiting to find out if the daughter survives, this film gets you totally invested in the plot. The amazing scenes of greenery and countryside on top of that, just really holds your attention, keeping you glued to the screen.

89b102e6-2018-462b-866a-302b2b4796ee

 My face after losing all those drawings. It also aged about 20 years in that moment.  

The brilliant twist and mind screw at the end, truly puts the cherry on the cake. I for one certainly didn’t see it coming and while viewing the last part of the film, I was in a state of confusion, wonder and awe watching the tale spin and mystery unravel. At one point, I was completely baffled over who was actually the evil one and really couldn’t tell. Both possibilities seemed equally as untrustworthy and both were creepy as fudge, with a presence that screamed evil.

Which takes me to my next point, like all good horror films The Wailing was incredibly creepy and really leaves a lasting impression on you. Meaning it could quite possibly keep you up at night, checking and rechecking that all the windows and doors of locked and secured. There’s just something about a naked demonic feral person, running around, eating raw deer and attacking people, that’s pretty terrifying. Not to mention, the horror of being attacked by a possessed extremely violent 9-year-old (you can’t punch a child, so not sure how you’d defend yourself against that one). Making this film pretty scary to watch at times.

The Wailing isn’t without its flaws, the biggest flaw being the excessive use of foul language (in the subbed version at least). This may seem like an overreaction to a bit of swearing, but it really isn’t the case. Truth be told I usually wouldn’t care about swearing or even notice there was swearing. However, this film goes a little too far with the strong language, like even the kid was swearing obscenely. It seemed as if they couldn’t even make it through a sentence without swearing, which really killed the atmosphere of certain scenes. Maybe in the subbed version someone got a little carried away when creating the subtitles and the actual version it isn’t as bad. But glob that amount of swearing really wasn’t necessary.

There are also a few strange bible references throughout this film, which may put off some viewers. But considering the ending of this film, those references are more like well hidden clues to how the film was going to end and who was actually the evil one. So, you can’t really cringe too hard at them. However, you could probably cringe rather hard at the acting from some of the minor characters. Their overacting is quite comical at times, but mostly it’ll have you holding your head in your hand and shaking your head in distaste. In saying that, the acting of those in the main roles more than makes up for this.

Overall, The Wailing is quite a good horror movie. It does have its shortcomings, but in whole it’s an interesting and very exciting watch. With its plot twists and interesting concept of how demonic possession works, The Wailing will really grab your attention. If you fancy a change from your typical demon horror movie like The Conjuring or The Exorcist and don’t mind reading subtitles, I would recommend giving this film a try. It quite the creepy watch and will please the lovers of horror.

Rating: 3.5/5

Valley of White Birds

44e9925a-3968-44d2-8400-8afa01465f0cTime to get back to my roots and get stuck into a review. Truth be told, I haven’t done a review in quite a while (well, other than Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, but it’s awesome and incredibly easy to talk about). Like what happens to many bloggers from time to time, I kind of burnt out review wise and started focusing more on my art work. Which wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, I feel like I’ve made some progress in bettering my art skills. Anyway, back to the task at hand, I thought I’d ease myself back into the swing of things, by reviewing a very beautiful short film called Valley of White Birds, from Wolf Smoke Studio.

Being just over 15mins long, Valley of White Birds begins with a young man walking through a forest alongside a stream. He is then joint by an old man and they both walk together along the forest path, as white paper-like birds fly around them. They soon reach a village, where suddenly the young man takes an awful disliking to the white paper birds and goes on a mad paper bird killing spree, turning a large number of the birds into Autumn coloured leaves. These actions must displease the forest spirits, because soon after the boss white bird shows up and appears to taunt the young man. The young man attempts to stealthily attack the boss bird but is distracted, by what was most likely a vision of his younger self. The vision quickly vanishes and the young man chases after the boss bird, whilst using his magic bean-shaped pebbles to tries to kill it. The boss bird leads the young man to a shrine, where the young man engages in a boss battle.

As you may have guessed from that description, this short film has no dialogue. In my opinion this doesn’t take away from the film and to be honest, the young man was fighting with a bird. Having him scream things at the bird, would have just been weird and destroyed the peaceful and intriguing feel the film creates. Story wise this film is pretty easy to follow and the creators have done an excellent job of leading you through the tale, with visuals alone.

125fe3f1-8ce1-4182-80cd-518c6f024bb5In saying that however, trying to understand this film on a deeper level (what it means and is about) is another story. I can only guess that it might be based on an old folk tale or book or that the whole thing reflects the young man’s fear of getting old (based on black birds covering the boy, turning him into the old man, then turning him back to a boy when the shrine was destroyed) or his loss of innocence (base on the boy innocently following the boss bird and seemly worshiping it. Then things turning sour, when the boy gets to the shrine. Also, the young man seems more angered and untrusting of the boss bird, than the boy. As if he’s more aware of the boss bird’s intentions). It could also be a play on the stages of life (the bird representing life and each version of the young man representing the common mind sets at each stage in life) or a play on the balance between yin and yang (black and white were used a lot and very symbolically). It’s very hard to pin down exactly what this film is about and these are only examples of conclusions I could come to while watching Valley of White Birds.

One very notable aspect of Valley of White Birds, is how beautiful and visually stimulating it is. The backgrounds are just stunning, you can tell a lot of time and love went into making this film. Without getting all artsy, I’m aware of the techniques you’d need to use, to achieve the backgrounds on actual paper. But the fact this film was probably done digitally, has me completely flabbergasted and makes me love it even more. The amount of work it must have taken to achieve that look, would have been crazy. You can really tell the creators were giving it their all while making this film. Even just on face value the animation and backgrounds, completely suck you in and sets the tone very well. The colour palette and use of shape, is incredibly pleasing to the eye and bring the film to a whole other level. It’s just one hell of a beautiful short film.

Overall, Valley of White Birds may be a little difficult to work out but is definitely worth watching, if only for its beauty alone. It an incredibly cute and stunning film, that will draw you and capture your attention, for the full 15mins. I would highly recommend checking Valley of White Birds out for yourself and seeing what you can conclude from this film.

Rating: 4/5

If you’re interested in watching Valley of White Birds, I’ve left a link to the film here
and a link to Wolf Smoke Studio’s YouTube channel here.

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992)

d91c2f21-3199-4c68-b757-60635b94777eVampires have always been something I liked from the horror genre. There’s just something about a monster that’s incredibly charming and looks human but can potentially suck you dry of your blood in an instant, that’s makes my skin crawl. So, for this review I thought I’d go back to the classics and share with you me thoughts on a movie about the Daddy of vampires himself, Count Dracula.

As you’ve probably guessed this film is closely based on the Bram Stoker novel Dracula. If you’re not familiar with the story, don’t worry I’ll fill you in. A young lawyer Jonathan leaves his fiancée Mina in London, to travels to Dracula’s castle to do a spot of business with the Count himself. When Jonathan arrives at the castle, Count Dracula tricks him into staying. However, Jonathan soon realises he’s being held against his will, when he tries to leave. Dracula then decides to travel to London, leaving poor Jonathan to be fed on by his lady vampires.

Once at London, the Count starts feeding on Mina’s friend Lucy, all while trying to win Mina favour. Eventually Jonathan escapes from Dracula’s castle and the vampire ladies and makes it back to London. However unfortunately, Lucy dies and becomes a vampire. Now faced with numerous vampires, a man known as Van Helsing steps in to lead the hunt for Dracula and his band of lady vampires.

Yeah, there’s a lot that goes on in Dracula, but is the film any good? All I can say is, it won’t be for anyone. Like the book it can be a little heavy and strange at times, which may put off some viewers. But if you love the book, I could see you thoroughly enjoying this film. It very closely follows the book, only leaving out a few details and even tries to maintain the letter/journal feel of the book. The only thing is, I don’t remember the book containing as much toplessness as this film. But I guess it depends on your own opinion, whether that’s a good or a bad thing.

6aaef467-e576-48a0-bfa4-8f36fb1e8c27The portrayal of Dracula himself is pretty good in this film. He starts off looking creepy as hell, sporting the famous Butt shaped hairdo, and gives of some real psychotic vibes. He then transitions into an extremely charming and attractive man, but still gives off a bit of a creepy vibe and by the end of the movie, he loses his charm and become a super gross batman creature. That’s pretty true to the book. However, unlike the book, the film doesn’t explain why Dracula’s appearance changes, very well and pretty much takes for granted that the viewer would know the reason for this. On a more positive note, the Film’s Dracula was a lot less ranty than the book’s and doesn’t go off on a tangent as much.

I must admit that the special effects in this film are a bit dated. However, they still look kind of cool, especially the play with Dracula’s shadows. The pacing also seems a little strange, feeling slow and heavy at times and kind of rushed at other times. But considering how long the book is, you can forgive the pacing.

Overall, Bram Stoker’s Dracula is an okay film. It does have its problems, but as book adaptations go, it’s pretty good. Sticking very close to the source material and leaving out only a few details (most likely for time-saving purposes). The film may now seem a little dated now, but if you’re a lover of the book or Dracula himself, you will most likely enjoy this film. Leaving me to recommend it, to anyone mad about vampires.

Rating: 3/5

The Jungle Book (2016)

thumbnail_f256818e-292d-4bc9-9033-81e02c0306bbAs Disney films go, The Jungle Book has always been one of my favourites. Out of all the Disney movies I watched as a child (which was a lot. I was a 90’s kid), The Jungle Book had the best soundtrack (followed closely by Mulan) and would really get you up and singing along. It’s pretty hard to believe that anyone could resist singing along to The Bare Necessities.

Watching the live-action version of a childhood favourite has put me in very sentimental mood. So, I thought since I’m sitting here reminiscing about the days of The Rugrats and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, I might as well make this movie, this week’s review.

The storyline to the live-action film, is pretty similar to The Jungle Book (1967), I watched as a child. A baby boy (Mowgli) is left alone in the jungle and is raised by wolves. An old bigoted tiger (Shere Khan) shows up one day, notices Mowgli the man-cub and decides he doesn’t want any man-cubs in his jungle. So, demands the man-cub be given to him, so that he can kill him (Glob, that’s actually rather dark and twisted). Mowgli doesn’t want to endanger his wolf family, so sets out to return to the man village, escorted by his panther friend Bagheera. However, things do not go to plan and Mowgli ends up going on an exciting adventure through the jungle, meeting a range of eccentric animals on his journey.

thumbnail_3b0b1417-ea85-4d73-8fcc-d9fe415a14faThis film is very CGI, with only one non-CGI character (Mowgli). The rest of the characters are CGI animals, which in my opinion were done very well. Granted you could tell they were computerised, but they still looked really good and moved like the real animals (not like some films, were the animals move like robots). CGI King Louie, even managed to thoroughly creep me out and will forever haunt my dreams. He was like a terrifying ginger King Kong, that disturbingly wanted people’s red flower.

To be honest, I was surprised by how good this live-action Jungle Book was. It managed to capture the fun of the cartoon 1967 version, without making any of the characters seem too over the top. They even had a few of those great songs from the cartoon version, which was a very nice touch to the film. The Jungle Book without “The Bare Necessities” and “I wan’na be like you”, just wouldn’t have been the same and just wouldn’t have been as enjoyable.

thumbnail_9eb92bf9-5fff-4110-91af-10eb8367882cHowever, one thing I do have to say about this film is, it’s a hell of a lot darker than the 1967 version and has more action scenes. Although, in my opinion this just sets it apart from the other versions of The Jungle Book. The only other small negative, is that Neel Sethi (Mowgli), acting isn’t that great at times. But considering how young he is and the fact all the other characters are CGI, I think this can be over looked.

Overall, the live-action Jungle Book (2016) is a rather enjoyable film. It has the fun of the 1967 version, while still managing to set itself apart from that version. Granted it was a bit dark and creepy, at times and that King Louie would look at home in any horror movie. However, the film as a whole is good enough over look this, if you dislike the dark and creepy. Personally, I still prefer Disney’s 1967 version of The Jungle Book, but I would say that this live-action version is worth watching, especially it you’re a fan of The Jungle Book.

Rating: 4/5

10 Cloverfield Lane

thumbnail_99cd16f9-f5c4-4073-b3ce-0afa27a427a1Have you ever read a movie description and thought the movie seems really good, just to be left sadly disappointed after watching it? That feeling of disappointment, would pretty much sums up this film. 10 Cloverfield Lane sounds so promising, but it just doesn’t deliver. But hey at least, it gave me an excuse to draw an underground bunker (it was so much fun), so with that in mind. On with the review.

In 10 Cloverfield Lane, a woman (Michelle) awakes after having a car accident and finds herself locked in basement-like room, chained to a pipe by the kneecap. Her captor (Howard), claims he found her unconscious in her car, on the side of the road and saved her from a chemical attack, that killed nearly all life on earth.

After claiming to be Michelle’s saviour, Howard frees Michelle from her chains but won’t let her leave his underground bunker, saying the air outside is contaminated and would kill her instantly. Now trapped underground, Michelle slowly realises there is something very wrong with Howard and ends up being sucked into a deadly game of house. Is Howard telling the true about the chemical attack and will Michelle make it out alive?

To be honest, 10 Cloverfield Lane starts of really strong and set a truly unnerving tone, that would make for a good Misery type thriller. Having Michelle awake in a creepy room, chained to a pipe with a Saw-like contraption, really gives you the feeling, things aren’t going to go well for Michelle. However, this level of intensity gets lost somewhere, causing the movie to feel a little flat. Probably because it tries to push too many reasons for why Howard is psychotic, at the viewer. Making the whole plot feel a little confused and lacking direction.

thumbnail_94b4c701-80df-42c5-b3a1-43cf0a1e5869In saying that, John Goodman (who plays Howard), does a really good job of portraying a disturbing unstable psychopath. They really didn’t need to give the viewer a reason why Howard was psychotic. Just from the demeanour John Goodman gave off as Howard and from his facial expression and strange body language, it was pretty clear that the character Howard wasn’t stable and had some serious issues. At points in the film, it shows glimpses of Howard’s face and it’s enough to make your blood run cold. It’s just very disturbing, which really shows how well John Goodman played the role of Howard.

I can’t say much more about 10 Cloverfield Lane, without making this into a complete rant post, so I’ll quickly conclude and give you my final thoughts. Although, John Goodman does a really good job of making 10 Cloverfield Lane feel very unnerving and adding suspense to this film. The film itself just lacks direction and its very messy ending completely reflects this (it was like they had another 20 minutes of film to make, so they randomly threw an alien and its warship into the mix, just to make up the time). 10 Cloverfield Lane sounds like it has the potential to be a great thriller, but it just doesn’t deliver. For this reason, I would say if you’re looking to watch a thriller, look elsewhere. There’s just so many more better thrillers you could spend your time watching, other than 10 Cloverfield Lane.

Rating: Due to John Goodman great acting, a generous 2/5