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Through the Looking Glass March 2, 2010

Posted by Paula in Cinematics, Lit.
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Make and Deux were lucky enough to get preview tickets to Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland in 3D last week. Sadly, Patrick arrived too late to actually attend the screening, and was left stranded and extremely hungover on O’Connell St. But that is another story. I was there and lived to tell the tale. And what a tale it is.

Even before we reach Wonderland (or Underland, which we learn is the correct name for the land that lies down the rabbit hole), Burton indulges his delight in all things skewed and technicolor, and creates a whole host of mad and maddening friends, neighbours and relations. Alice (Mia Wasikowska) has aged 13 years since her first trip to Wonderland, and is now in danger of being married off to a snooty Lord of the Manor with a “delicate digestive system”. That is, of course, before she starts to chase after a certain white rabbit at her own engagement party.

The completely satirical version of a stiff-upper-lip English society in which Alice lives probably the closest Burton gets to staying faithful to Lewis Carroll’s original book and the inspriration behind it. The entire Wonderland story has been completely revamped, Burton-ised and loaded with CGI.

(more…)

Will Sparks Fly? February 23, 2010

Posted by Patrick in Cinematics, Lit.
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Curiously, in the next few months there are not one but two Nicholas Sparks book adaptations on the way and inevitably, everyone’s going to be debating which was better.

The first, Dear John, stars Amanda Seyfried and Channing Tatum as a war-torn couple, separated by his decision to go fight for his country. Throughout his time abroad as a soldier, they exchange letters, which keep him going through his “increasingly dangerous missions” and blah blah blah while she sits at home and waits for him to return.

The other film is Sparks’ Miley Cyrus vehicle The Last Song. This film has a more chequered past, originally scheduled for release in January, but subsequently postponed until March 31st (at least in the US). The storyline even seems a bit less stimulating – Cyrus plays a mopey teen who goes to live with her dad for the summer, and falls in love with a guy on the beach.

Although Miley’s name attached to anything would normally seem like a safe bet, the film seems a to be skewing a little older than her usual demographic. The problem is, however, the type of people who loved The Notebook are likely to be put off by the presence of Miley Cyrus in the film. It doesn’t help either that Liam Hemsworth is a complete unknown, famous only for his real life attachment to the Hannah Montana star.

Although I’m never one to completely write Miley off, I’m going to wager that Dear John will fare much better at the box office (judging by its ticket sales to date, The Last Song has a lot to live up to), given that it panders almost shamelessly to The Notebook fans.

And if they had come out the same weekend, Amanda Seyfried and Channing Tatum of course would have had some sort of sabotage mission planned.

“If The Last Song was coming out the same weekend as Dear John, we’d have to collaborate on some sort of sabotage mission,” Seyfried told MTV.

“I’d burn it,” Tatum added. “I’d sabotage it somehow.”

Once they’re better than the god-awful Nights in Rodanthe, I’ll be happy.

Check out the trailers below and let the battle commence.

Dear John (out 16th April in Ireland)

The Last Song (out 30th April in Ireland)

She’s with the Band February 3, 2010

Posted by Patrick in Lit, Televisual.
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Another day, another piece of Zooey Deschanel news. Alongside her successful music and film careers, Zooey’s finally sticking her finger into the television pie (unless we’re counting guest appearances on Bones and Tin Man) by signing up to star in and executive produce HBO’s new comedy pilot, I’m with the Band: Confessions of a Groupie.

The show is based on the book of the same name, a 1987 memoir by notorious groupie Pamela Des Barres. Some of her story was already told in the film Almost Famous, which incidentally was one of Zooey’s first film appearances.

It’s a half-hour comedy, so I’m not expecting anything along the lines of The Sopranos or Six Feet Under here. But HBO’s needed something in the comedy department to fill the void left by Sex and the City. I don’t see this as being the worthiest of replacements, but with Zooey on board I can’t help but be optimistic.

For a taste of what to expect, here’s the book’s blurb:

The stylish, exuberant, and remarkably sweet confession of one of the most famous groupies of the 1960s and 70s is back in print in this new edition that includes an afterword on the author’s last 15 years of adventures. As soon as she graduated from high school, Pamela Des Barres headed for the Sunset Strip, where she knocked on rock stars’ backstage doors and immersed herself in the drugs, danger, and ecstasy of the freewheeling 1960s. Over the next 10 years she had affairs with Mick Jagger, Jimmy Page, Keith Moon, Waylon Jennings, Chris Hillman, Noel Redding, and Jim Morrison, among others. She traveled with Led Zeppelin; lived in sin with Don Johnson; turned down a date with Elvis Presley; and was close friends with Robert Plant, Gram Parsons, Ray Davies, and Frank Zappa. As a member of the GTO’s, a girl group masterminded by Frank Zappa, she was in the thick of the most revolutionary renaissance in the history of modern popular music. Warm, witty, and sexy, this kiss-and-tell–all stands out as the perfect chronicle of one of rock ‘n’ roll’s most thrilling eras.

[Blurb via Good Reads]
[Image: Girls Aren’t Funny]

There’s a wand waiting for ME? January 29, 2010

Posted by Patrick in Cinematics, Lit.
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If I wasn’t already excited enough about The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, set to launch this spring at Universal Studios Orlando, I certainly am now.

The theme park’s marketing team have wisely recruited the film franchise’s cast members to talk up Ollivander’s Wand Shop (see below), which will be situated in Hogsmeade Village (not Diagon Alley like in the books…)

It’s a bit gimmicky to hear Emma Watson tell us our “wand is waiting for us”, and Michael Gambon is clearly taking the piss for the entire thing, but nonetheless, colour me excited.

Thierry Coup, Universal Creative’s vice president of creative development and head of the project, explains the wand selection process:

“The questions that will be asked from the wand keeper to the wizard are very individual, very tailored to each person based on their birth date and other questions which will determine the kind of wood and kind of narrow down the choices of wands.

One of [the effects could be], as you’re asked to wave the wand, [if it’s not the right one], may be wilting flowers. As you’re asked to water the flowers actually is the reverse effect may happen. Lightening, thunder, we have a whole series of effects. We want enough variety so everyone gets a very unique, individual experience.”

Although there’s no official launch date for the park yet, I’m keeping a close eye on flights to Florida so I can be first in line for my custom wand.

[via MTV.com]

“We’re more than just a club. We’re friends. Best friends.” January 1, 2010

Posted by Paula in Lit.
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Do the names Claudia, Kristy, Mary-Anne, Dawn and Stacey strike a chord of delight in your heart? Does the thought of Stoneybrook High, a school teeming with closet diabetics and boys called Logan, send a shiver running down your spine? If yes, then I’m guessing that you too grew up dreaming of starting your own Babysitters Club. Ann M. Martin’s 250 volume-strong book series, The Babysitters Club, was like heroin to pre-teens everywhere in the eighties and nineties. And there was always just one more that you hadn’t read…

Well, good news. Following on from 2008’s Goosebumps revival, Scholastic have announced plans for a Babysitters Club revamp. The first two books of the series will be re-released later this year. The series was given a mild re-design a few years ago, but the fancy cover art and the addition of a new babysitter, Abby (obsessed with learning Hebrew, star of Abby and the Mystery Baby and Abby The Bad Sport. Anyone remember but me?) failed to boost sales. The books will be given a few cultural tweaks this time around. It’s rumoured that Stacey’s perm will be no more, replaced simply with the term “fashionable hairstyle”.

A prequel to the series is also on its way. For those of us who sometimes wonder what the Babysitters did before they babysat, “The Summer Before” will be published this April. Scholastic promises a “moving” novel, ripe with crushes, gossip and “the joys and tribulations of being a girl”. I for one cannot wait.

Where the Wild Things Are Expensive September 30, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Cinematics, Lit, Trashion.
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WTWTA

With the release date of the Where the Wild Things Are film fast approaching, there’s plenty of people trying to get in on the merchandising act. Urban Outfitters are stocking a number of different style t-shirts, while Opening Ceremony have gone one step further and commissioned a Where the Wild Things Are line in collabration with the movie’s director, Spike Jonze.

The collection includes an adult-sized Max suit (pictured above) with, as they put it, “super soft faux fur one piece with six brown buttons down the front, a snap off faux raccoon fur tail, attached fingerless gloves, and a hood with attached ears and a snap closure at the neck.”

I know what you’re thinking, isn’t that the perfect Halloween costume? But think again, because this creation will set you back $610. Yes, I want a Max suit but I also like being financially solvent.

There are some cheaper items in Opening Ceremony’s Where the Wild Things Are line, but by cheaper I mean $220 – and that’s for a skirt. Despite the prices, the rest of the clothes actually look wearable, with items such as Max’s lined parka from the book and skirts, jackets and more inspired by Max and the wild things. To see these and more, click here.

[via Opening Ceremony]

Can’t take all of these muggles, but despite all of my struggles… July 15, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Cinematics, Lit, Muzak.
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Emma Watson having the lolz

Everyone’s talking about Harry Potter at the moment, considering the new film is out today. So it was really quite appropriate timing to stumble upon University of Michigan’s “A Very Potter Musical”.

Yes, the title of this post is an actual lyric from the opening number “Goin’ Back”. And Lord Voldemort has a tap number in which he uses the Imperius curse to make Harry dance along with him. What more could you ask for?

The opening number is below, and the other 22 parts (yes, the whole thing is up) are on YouTube. I can’t honestly say I’ve watched all 22 parts yet but the first song alone is absolutely lolworthy.

What’s black, white and written all over? June 2, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Lit, Webshite.
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In the FloodMost of us, when given a black marker and a newspaper, would probably draw stupid faces over photographs of people. Austin Kleon on the other hand, has made an art form out of it by creating poems from certain words in newspaper stories.

It’s a great idea, and the majority of the poems are actually really good, while some are just stupid and funny.

The poems will form the basis of a book, appropriately titled “Newspaper Blackout Poems”, which will be published by Harper Collins and is set for a September release.

See more at the Newspaper Blackout Poems blog on Kleon’s official site.

“One can imagine taking up blackout poetry on their daily bus commute in place of sudoku or the crossword puzzle.” Toronto’s National Post

[via boxofboom]

A page from his diary May 21, 2009

Posted by Paula in Lit, Webshite.
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Ferdinand Von Prondzynski, President of Dublin City University, was featured in The Irish Times yesterday, which is nothing new considering the huge amount of Irish media coverage that DCU gets. But surprisingly, the article only focused briefly on Ferdie’s views on the re-introduction of university fees. Instead, it showcased his talents as a blogger, which are considerable.

ferdinand myspace

I definitely have a soft spot for Ferdie, mainly because of the huge effort he makes to engage with DCU students. As well as having Facebook, Bebo and Myspace pages, Ferdie has been blogging at Diary of a University President since June of last year. Anyone from DCU- check his stuff out. Anyone not from DCU but with an interest in the Eurovision, the Premier League, or the running of a university– check his stuff out.

You make my heart sing May 18, 2009

Posted by Paula in Cinematics, Lit.
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I’ve been extremely excited about the film adaptation of Where the Wild Things Are ever since hearing about it from Joey in March. I loved this book as a child, and still do. Whenever I come across a copy of it I always read it again from start to finish (no big feat, it’s about 20 pages). Apparently the film, directed by Spike Jonze, has been altered a bit in the past year or so because it was deemed too scary for young audiences. But, guys…it’s about wild things. It has to be a little bit terrifying.

Found some gawjusss stills in Don’t Panic magazine (via weheartit) today.

wild things crown

Here’s the new poster… This film is going to be amazing. I can feel it.

wild things poster

poster from official film site