Archive for the ‘movies’ Category

Typing (some of) this on my new Wedge Mobile keyboard

February 3, 2014

Yup, I bought it so that I didn’t have to carry my bulky laptop around, but still be able to do work on my Tab.  It’s a little steep at $99, but pretty solid overall – no lag, keys are firm yet the board is light (the cover adds weight though).  Definitely lighter than if I were to bring entire laptop out. Now I don’t have an excuse not to do work, haha. Oh yes I met a former student working at the store and she gave me a staff discount – yay! Also bumped into XY and ME who gave me a little update on 61. Glad to know they’re working hard.

It was fun spending the afternoon with T, shopping and eating and talking about things, and getting intel about some people in school, haha.

Watched Her over the holidays, in two sittings, because somehow it was too painful to get through it in one.  Jonze really does hit the jackpot on so many issues, but perhaps the one that struck me is how our relationships are meaningful because they’re so limited, because it’s two flawed beings struggling to make things work. Not that all flawed relationships can work, mind. There must be a floor under which some relationships are better off left to die. Ouch.

Now I’m gonna stop here and get started on my last Study of War summary. Time really does fly.


Want to see an American jerk-off fantasy about the GWOT? Watch ‘The Kingdom’

December 7, 2007

movie poster

Total lame-ass movie, if you ask me.  First, they make the terrorists look like fearful moron bobo shooters who basically lead the FBI team to Abu Hamzah the cell leader (instead of making them investigate their way to him), then the total cop-out by having the token Saudi good guy die instead of the captured FBI agent having his throat cut off.  Who in his right mind is going to believe that Americans can kick ass in the Middle East? Oh I forgot. This is Hollywood after all, and they can keep screening bullshit like this while the bodybags come off the C-130s from Kabul and Baghdad. 

got 102 minutes?: families take centrestage in featurette

August 15, 2007

The 2-disc Special Edition of United 93 arrived a couple of days ago. Finally got the chance to watch the documentaries and here’s a capsule review:

 2-disc special edition

I had my heart set on this edition because I wanted to view the bonus documentary “Chasing Planes: Witnesses to 9/11”.  As it turns out, it wasn’t at all that special, neither did it contain extra information which watching the movie and reading the 9/11 Commission Report would have not sufficed.  While they did a good job acknowledging with candor the confusion and the breakdown in the ATC C&C cycle, it would have been better if they had included an exploration of how things have changed since 9/11 – if, indeed, it has.  That would have made for a much fuller and richer discussion.

By far, the gem was the featurette “United 93: The Families and the Film”.  Finally we get to see the surviving loved ones of Deora, Jeremy, Lauren, Debbie, Hilary, Louis, Richard, Alan and a couple of others, after having read about them in – among other works – Jere Longman’s Among the Heroes: United Flight 93 and the Passengers and Crew Who Fought Back.  While Liz Glick seems the most composed of them all, there is a very palpable sense that for the others, 9/11 remains as raw today as it was on that day.  It was indeed an experience watching the heartfelt reactions of the actors who played the passengers as they get to meet the family members and hear first-hand about the people whom they had portrayed.  Watching them left me wondering if Lisa Beamer and Deena Burnett played any part in the making of the film, but you sort of are grateful that this gives the less-publicised family members a chance to air their stories.  Greengrass’ commentary on the film is potent yet understated – his take on the juxtaposition of modernity and medievalism in the story of 9/11 is one of Friedman’s running themes in The World is Flat (which deserves proper consideration in its own entry).  Overall, really worth my 77 bucks. 

thoughts on the eve of a new day

July 8, 2007

ok, gotta couple minutes before I actually decide if I should go to bed, or continue flipping through some of the material that I was given on Friday. Or I could start putting some stationery and basic things I want to bring tomorrow. Or lay out the clothes. But in my mind I’m thinking why stress myself out more than I already have? I don’t need to bring every piece of stationery I got. I can’t possibly understand and remember everything I read, even if I were to slavishly thumb through all the stuff over the weekend. It’s better to start with the basics, and add on from there. I did look through Issues and Ideas over yesterday and the structure is pretty much identification, paraphrase and application. Some of the views looked dubious in fact, or maybe it’s my over-taxed brain running on adrenaline again. Time will tell.

Instead I spent a large part of today looking through Saturday’s and today’s newspapers. It’s a little bit disconcerting getting through the articles and trying to look for the main arguments because let’s face it – I have not been doing any serious reading for quite some time now. And it shows. Hope the rustiness will wear off though – I’m trying to think and evaluate things in the GP way, to prepare for how I should go in and conduct the lessons. Always trying to surface more evidence, then weighing them to test for reliability, validity and all the rest of it. Stationery and attire are the least of my problems now. Getting a handle on all things GP is the priority. Ok, I’m getting stressed and intimidated all over again just thinking about it.

Watched Die Hard 4 with Jack yesterday. Lots of room for improvement. Because I had stayed up quite late on Friday on account of dinner with my sis that ended late, I was trying hard to stay awake during the movie. Got a 160GB portable hard disk at a pretty good price for WS, and went over to transfer the data to her desktop. Unfortunately, it’s been hit by some kind of trojan horse virus, which NAV cannot remove completely. I wanted to help solve the problem, but really I had lots of other things on my mind, and I guess it’ll just have to wait.

Ok, I’m going to stop here and go to bed. Fingers crossed for a good start tomorrow.

Couch potatoes, transform and roll out! (to watch Transformers the movie)

July 2, 2007


Watched Transformers yesterday with Jack and Kam. With all the hype, some bad reviews and lots of opinions about Michael Bay’s directorial style, I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the movie. The pacing was good, and so were the touches at humour, and the action – lots of it, especially in the second half of the movie when the Decepticons brought it on – it was lock and load all the way. Only two things got in the way of total, unsurpassable enjoyment: my bad for not noticing the timing of the advanced booking being 3.05 AM, and although we managed to get seats for the 3.55 PM show, we had to sit in the first row and crane our necks a little bit. The other thing was a plothole nitpick that kinda got to me:

WARNING: if you haven’t seen the movie, just skip the next couple of lines:

Just how the hell did that black computer nerd decrypt the Transformers’ hieroglyphics to uncover the Project Iceman info, when no one else in the government could do it? For me, this was a HUGE loophole that really spoiled my enjoyment of the movie, because it turned out to be the government’s only lead to tracking down what the Decepticons had uncovered – the knowledge of Sam and the glasses. It’s all Jack’s fault – I guess his TWOP obsession has rubbed off on me too.

I’m supposed to read up on CNP on its website as instructed by them, and also find out how the hell to get to their offices for the interview tomorrow, but I think I’ll do it tomorrow morning, after I come back from passing SJI the stuff they want. From Tuesday onwards, I’ll be doing relief for them for at least the next two weeks, at the end of which all the organisations should have come back to me about whether I get a second shot or not. Oh well, at least I get paid for the next two weeks.

getting a clue from ‘Nancy Drew’

June 25, 2007

As it turned out, I stayed up till 5.40 am last night sending resumes. Ok, so it was more like 3.30 and the rest of the time was site surfing, but hey, cut me some slack, alright? Then I went to get my certs laminated, and I went to JE branch library to check out the 9/11 books they had. Leafed through 3 and read a chapter or two of one – more detailed thoughts about that at another time.

And then I thought, why not catch Nancy Drew? My take – Emma Roberts is cute. Also, there’s a dress that she wears at her birthday party in the movie that abs fabs. Here are just two shots of it but I wish I could show you the shot where she looks absolutely stunning doing some kinda retro dance – I forgot the name.

front shot of that cool dress

This one is from the side:

profile shot of the dress

Ok, I really gotta get myself a job cos I’m TALKING ABOUT DRESSES! How more gay can I get? No, don’t answer that.

Anyway, the opening scene was really stupid but the way they set up the mystery with a ‘haunted’ house, secret passageways, gruff caretaker, long-lost daughter, and discovering clues in dreams is pretty much just tolerable. Tip for the sequel – lose the fat kid, and give Drew some dark, brooding mystery man to slobber all over, not that nit of a Ned who tries too hard pretending to be retro SNAG.

And retro the movie does turn up – how everyone digs the roadster and penny loafers and vinyl. It’s not easy considering the original Drew series started way back in 1930, but it seems uncomfortable transplanting the Ingrid Bergman movie star diva type into 21st century Hollywood-rica. It’s like they decided to update the series but forgot which direction the vinyl groove was moving in, so in the end the movie seems stuck between two eras. One saving grace was the soundtrack – it wasn’t too bad. I would consider getting it if I wasn’t so, well, not crazy over it.

Still, there’s hope yet. Emma Roberts (did I mention she’s cute?) is signed on for a sequel, so if they’d just iron out the kinks, it should be another franchise disguising as brain food for female empowerment. Oh, and before I wrote this, I kinda thought Roberts has a young Audrey Hepburn kinda vibe, but I’m not sure now. Only time will tell.

After the movie, DS called so we met up for a while at Holland V. I had the chance to taste the famous Katong laksa again:


And then I got to thinking how sad it is that places and, indeed, many experiences in Singapore get delocalised so quickly and easily. But perhaps the ‘Katong’ in Katong laksa is more a brand than a location, evoking at the mere mention the culinary traditions so famously associated with that area. Then there was that controversy a few years back about which stall really sells ‘authentic’ Katong laksa. Judging by the PRCs that were cooking and serving up the stuff, I guess it’s really a moot point at this point.

Going to do my hair (god that IS so gay saying it) tommorow for Friday. Have to make a good impression on SJI and HCI right? I wish they wouldn’t all take place on Friday, but then again, it’s the shortest day of the week for members of The Job after all.