Monday, 26 June 2017

A Belated Gift

I might have mentioned this before in one of my older posts, but I'm currently learning Japanese. I have been studying by myself for about a year now. The reasons? Well, besides the numerous benefits of multilinguals and studying foreign languages in general, I enjoy many Japanese entertainment media, and I hope that one day I will enjoy them in their original language. Ever since I was younger, I had a soft spot for Ghibli movies. I liked the wild imagination that overflowed in the fictional worlds of the films, the original and highly creative creatures that roamed in the stories, the brave heroines, and the fascinating scenes that dragged you into the screen. Moreover, I enjoy Japanese cinema, both classic and modern. I like Murakami Haruki's simple-yet-extrordinary books and Murakami Takashi's crazy, colourful, and out-of-this-world art. These are some of the reasons that led me to start learning Japanese, and I'm currently using both, print media and online sources, to study. I may not be able to speak fluently or read with ease yet, but the progress I made so far makes me feel proud of myself, and every time I manage to complete a sentence and get my point across feels like a small victory, a minor achievement that majorly boosts my confidence. During my studying journey, I made a lot of wonderful friends who are also learning Japanese or who are native Japanese speakers and generously help me improve daily.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Orange is the New Black: Season 5 Review

Netflix

The day Orange is the New Black premiered on Netflix, I eagerly woke up and tried to avoid spoilers on Twitter until I had enough free time to start binge-watching. I ended up watching the whole season (consisting of 13 episodes in total) in two days. Four seasons in, I assume the audience pretty much had pretty much the same expectations, as we are all used to OITNB's patterned format: a broader topic for the season, this time being the riot; several secondary topics, one for each episode; and one character under our microscope during each episode, whom we follow throughout the episode and whose backstory will be revealed in flashbacks. This season however turned out to be a little different in format, something that surprised me since many of the things I mentioned were what made me fall in love with the show. Were the changes worth it?

This is my spoiler-free quick review of the season, including differences from previous seasons and my impressions.

Monday, 22 May 2017

Films to Watch During the LGBT+ Pride Month

June is approaching, marking not only the beginning of Summer but also the LGBT+ Pride Month. Countries worldwide have different kinds of events to celebrate and bring the community closer but also (and more importantly) to discuss important issues, educate, and raise awareness. Being a cinephile, I like to accommodate special occasions like this with the appropriate films. If you are like me, here is a short list with recommendations for LGBT-related films that I enjoyed and maybe you will too. The list has no particular order.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Fictitious Lives in Lumineers' Videos

Recently, while digging through Youtube to discover new music, I came across one of Lumineers' latest music videos, Sleep on the Floor. After watching the whole thing, Youtube's autoplay function automatically sent me to one of their older videos, Angela, which to my surprise had subtle references to the previous one. Then, finally, I'm forwarded to a third and even older one, Cleopatra, which likewise was connected to the previous two through common characters and elements.

After putting some thought to it, I realised that the three videos are connected to uniformly narrate the years-long story of a woman through different stages of her life, or rather, a hypothetical, non-existent life formed through questioning past decisions and contemplating alternative lives. It basically plays around the concept of what if in order to imbue regret and nostalgia at the same time by showing her yearning desires and ends up telling a pretty tragic tale of lost love. Let me explain how I see it, but first I'd suggest you watch the videos in that order to avoid any spoilers.

Saturday, 31 December 2016

2016

Well, there it is. The notorious and unpredictable year of 2016 is finally coming to an end. Like a horrible movie that is finally sliding in the ending credits, we all start to remember past events, comprehend what happened, and reminiscent the, few for some and numerous for others, enjoyable memories that form piece-by-piece the past year. Each one of us will memorise and perish it for our own reasons. The truth is, however, one look around the internet is enough to see the bad name 2016 is leaving behind. Quite reasonably, considering the abundance of sad events that marked the last twelve months.