Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Anime - Dub or Sub?

Anime, or 'those weird Japanese cartoons you should have grown out of by now', is the best.
I'm biased, yes, since I've loved anime since I can remember. Pokemon, Doraemon, Digimon... I'm sure there were others without "mon" in the title...

Anime isn't a mainstream thing in the UK, as we have not had a channel dedicated to airing purely anime shows in a long time. We used to be able to watch the very popular "shounen" anime on Fox Kids/Jetix (now Disney XD), Cartoon Network and occasionally Nickelodeon, but now we only see the latest series of Pokemon (Seriously, Ash Ketchum has been 10 for 15 years... would it kill someone to give the poor kid a birthday episode?) and maybe that one anime about football. I won't complain, because if it's not what the people want, it's not what the people want. If people want it, it's nearly always available online for free. Netflix has a decent selection, and Crunchyroll is an official streaming website - premium membership payments support the anime industry in Japan, making it worth the £4.99 a month.

So, a brief story about my anime journey.

My younger brother and I used to get up super early in the morning to watch Naruto on Jetix, and then we'd stay up ridiculously late (like, past 10pm!) to watch Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo (a classic, I assure you). It was dubbed into English, and it was really enjoyable to watch. We grew up with Pokemon on the TV and Pokemon in our hearts (or gameboys - in our childhood there wasn't much difference). Whenever we went on holiday to Thailand, we would watch anime in a Thai dub and pretend to understand - we'd seen most of it before so it wasn't too bad. We were introduced to newer anime that we would then try to find online when we returned home to good old England. After searching online and in libraries, I started to read manga comics as well, and a love story began. When I started secondary school, I toned down the anime-fan and got into High School Musical and Hairspray like everyone else, before quickly returning to Chibi Vampire after High School Musical 2 was a massive disappointment.

At the age of 14, I felt very out of place for enjoying manga and anime. There was a little club at school, and they were awesome (!!!!!!!!), but my friends just weren't interested, and sometimes (unintentionally) made me feel like just a loser for watching it and getting excited for a green-haired boy who played the trumpet (La Corda d'Oro). I hid that side of me for 3 years until I started 6th Form and I drifted away from that group of friends. Then I suddenly had 3 years worth of anime and manga to catch up on, and I was bursting with happiness. Now I'm here. I still don't have many friends who I can geek out about anime with, but my select few are some of my closest friends. Nobody judges me for the random collection of character posters I keep on my wall. I'm back!

You may be wondering about the title of this blog post. "Anime - Dub or Sub?"

There's always a debate about which is better to watch - the anime in the original Japanese Dub with English subtitles, or the anime with an English dub.

Tonight, I sat down to watch the English dub of one of my favourite animes, "Free! Iwatobi Swim Club". It is terrible. I have been snapchatting it's horrendous-ness to my friend for the last hour. But is why is it so terrible, you ask? Many reasons, I answer.

Here I will discuss three different anime and their dubs, and whether I think they are good or not. Enjoy!

Free! Iwatobi Swim Club/Free! Eternal Summer (2013-2014)

Free! starts with four boys—Haruka, Makoto, Nagisa and Rin—before they graduate from elementary school. They all participated in a swimming tournament and won, though they parted ways. Years later, Haruka and Makoto reunite with Nagisa when Nagisa enrolls into high school a year after Haruka and Makoto. Not long after, Rin, who was thought to be in Australia, turns up and challenges Haruka to a race and wins. Afterward, Nagisa suggests creating a swimming club and using the run-down outdoor pool. Haruka, Makoto, and Nagisa, and later on, Rei, create the Iwatobi High School Swimming Club and work together to make the club a success. Rin's victory over Haruka means nothing to him as he realizes that Haruka had stopped swimming competitively and wasn't in top shape. He claims that he cannot get over the fact until Haruka competes against him for real. The members of the revived Iwatobi Swim Club later enter a swimming competition against Rin. [Wikipedia]
This anime is fantastic, if you enjoy this type of genre. Sports anime have their own little cults on the web, such as Kuroko no Basuke (basketball), Haikyuu!! (volleyball) and others, but Free! is my favourite of them all. It differs to others in that the swim team is significantly smaller, and you really see the development of the relationships between all the characters progress throughout both series, and it is really easy to get attached to them. I won't go too much into it, purely because I could talk about it for days, but if you enjoy the kind of anime that is light and warm but with deeper meanings brewing below the surface then give it a try. Sports anime have ongoing themes of teamwork and rivalry etc. but every sports anime ends on the same sad note - the seniors have to graduate at some point. Free! Eternal Summer starts off light, but as the boys have grown up a bit since the first series, their futures are coming a little too soon and watching them deal with it is an emotional ride, especially if you're at the same age as the characters (which I was. *grabs tissues*).

I don't know what it is, but the original Japanese version is just very beautiful. The translations are very lovely and I loved reading them. If you understand a little bit about Japanese culture (or if you've watched enough anime, I suppose) then the whole senpai-kouhai (senior-junior) trope is such a great thing to watch, and the language that they use is an indicator of how someone feels about another, and says a lot about someone's personality. I feel like this is really taken away by the English dub.

For starters, the first episode of Eternal Summer just gave off a completely different vibe to me, it was all sort of DUDES and BROS and RIVALRY. Don't get me wrong, there are definitely elements of all of those things in the Japanese, but... the way they all speak to each other changes the entire thing. It's not that the voice actors are terrible - they're actually great, although perhaps some of them don't quite match up to the character. It just feels a little bit too American to me. Makoto, the captain of the Iwatobi Swim Club, has a lovely voice, and I feel like it matches up to his character well, but why is he calling Haruka (his best friend, Vice Captain of the Iwatobi team) "dude"? It's just so WRONG. Makoto always addresses Haruka in such a fond way, and their relationship is at the point where they don't always need to communicate verbally because they just get each other. THE ENGLISH DUB HAS "BRO"-IFIED MY FAVOURITE FRIENDSHIP OF ALL TIME. That is not okay. They all say things that are very different to the original Japanese and it changes everything. SHAME ON YOU. Also, Rin is pronounced Rin. Stop calling him Reen.

Naruto/Naruto Shippuden (2002-)

A powerful fox known as the Nine-Tails attacks the ninja village Konoha. In response, the leader of Konoha – the Fourth Hokage – seals the fox inside his newborn son Naruto Uzumaki at the cost of his life. As a child, Naruto is isolated from the Konoha community, who regards him as if he was the Nine-Tails itself. A decree made by the current Kage, the Third Hokage, forbids anyone mentioning the Nine-Tails to anyone else. Twelve years later, renegade ninja Mizuki reveals Naruto the truth before being defeated by Naruto with the Shadow Clone Jutsu, earning the respect of his teacher Iruka Umino. Shortly after, Naruto becomes a ninja and is assigned alongside Sasuke Uchiha, whom he often competes against, and Sakura Haruno, whom he has a crush on, to form a three-person team named Team 7 under an experienced sensei, the elite ninja Kakashi Hatake. Like all the ninja teams from every village, Team 7 is charged with completing missions requested by villagers, ranging from doing chores, and being bodyguards or executing assassinations. [Wikipedia]
Naruto is from a different genre of anime - the "shounen" drama. This means that its more of a "boy" anime, or whatever, but it's action packed, has a loud, lovable protagonist and has a bit of something for everyone in it. I couldn't resist giving opinions on it since it is probably one of the first animes that I really hooked onto, even though I've been having my own problems with it recently. They don't matter too much in the context of this blogpost, so I'll save that for another time. This anime, is part of a generation of anime/manga that never end (see also: Bleach, One Piece, Gintama). Naruto had 700 chapters (it's been a thing since 1999) and only finished last year, but the anime is miles behind it and will probably finish within my lifetime (probably). It also has spin off novels, a new spin off film based on the next generation of ninjas, with the potential to keep the franchise going on FOREVER.

The importance of this is that there are loads of characters. Loads. Too many. There are so many characters with different personalities and habits that it must be difficult to find that many voice actors, right? Wrong. I'm sure every voice actor/actress in Japan has had a go on Naruto. Some even twice. (I'm obviously exaggerating here, but not that much). Bearing this in mind, I'd say that the English dub isn't too bad. For some characters, I really prefer their English Actors. It's not too different from the Japanese, and after you get used to it it doesn't matter which version you watch. One thing I always find amusing is the inconsistencies of name pronunciation. Some of the English Dub actors really go for it and give a Japanese pronunciation, then the others go for a very terrible English-American pronunciation. It's great for mimicking.

Cowboy Bebop (1998)

In 2071, roughly sixty years after an accident with a hyperspace gateway made the Earth uninhabitable, humanity has colonized most of the rocky planets and moons of the Solar System. Amid a rising crime rate, the Inter Solar System Police (ISSP) set up a legalized contract system, in which registered bounty hunters (also referred to as "Cowboys") chase criminals and bring them in alive in return for a reward. The series protagonists are bounty hunters working from the spaceship Bebop. The original crew are Spike Spiegel, an exiled former hitman of the criminal Red Dragon Syndicate, and his partner Jet Black, a former ISSP officer. They are later joined by Faye Valentine, an amnesiac con artistEdward Wong, an eccentric girl skilled in hacking; and Ein, a genetically-engineered Welsh Corgi with human-like intelligence. Over the course of the series, the team get involved in disastrous mishaps leaving them out of pocket, while often confronting faces and events from their past: these include Jet's reasons for leaving the ISSP, and Faye's past as a woman from Earth injured in an accident and cryogenically frozen to save her life. [Wikipedia]
Quite simply, the best anime ever? I can't say anymore than that. It is the ultimate classic anime, and if you haven't watched it then, like, why not? Do it. It's probably on YouTube somewhere. The concept is great, and the characters are awesome. Spike Spiegel is the cool, laid-back gun slinger protagonist that everyone wishes they could be, even though he's basically a loser. Jet is the wise, parent figure of the group. Faye is the bad girl. Edward is just Edward, the sweetest, weirdest character of the lot. What's great about it is that you just don't see anime of this kind anymore. It's got such a good mix of genres, and at the time it was exploring themes that people were reluctant to touch, especially for an anime. It has its moments of violence (but honestly I've seen worse), but it also has good comedy, interesting detective elements, it's smooth and classy and gives off a real film-noir vibe, all while fulfilling the "Western" genre.

Many say that the English dub is better than the Japanese dub. I don't necessarily agree, as I think they're both insanely good, but the English dub just suits the show better. Spike Spiegel just has the SEXIEST voice ever. No word of a lie. For such a smooth-talking character, you just expect a deep neutral-sounding American voice to come out of his mouth. Given that the theme music is of the jazz/blues variety, everything comes together better in the English dub.

Watch and enjoy:

So that's it from me. It's not a usual thing for me to splurge 2000+ words about anything onto a blogpost anymore, but hopefully that will change and you'll be hearing more from me in future. Who knows?

Friday, 5 September 2014

I'm scared-

This blog post is largely inspired by this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cnV9uUjWxJI
I urge you to watch this before continuing.

The current scandal involving the K-Pop singer Kim Hyun-Joong is a story that is simply shocking, but not even for the scandal itself. The response to the scandal from people who are his fans is what shocks and upsets me the most.

The "scandal" is that this man was accused of beating his ex-girlfriend. She has provided copious amounts of evidence to back her accusation (hospital records, photos, text messages) and goes by the name "A". At first even I was shocked to hear this, as having been a fan of this celebrity in the past it felt out of character - I will address this later on. However, upon reading that he released a statement admitting that he had beaten her was enough proof for me (and everyone, I argue) that he IS an abuser and he should be punished for it.

His statement (source):

The agency stated, "After confirming [with Kim Hyun Joong], we found that it's true the two parties have known each other since 2012, but they didn't start dating until a few months ago... In the middle of their relationship, the two had an intense exchange of words. Though it's true that in their heightened emotional state things got physical, it's not true that there was continual physical assaults or that she's been battered and beaten over the past two months like what was reported." 

In terms of the reports that the woman in question suffered fractured ribs, KeyEast said,"Their physical fight was a one time occurrence, and her fractured ribs didn't occur due to their recent argument. Her ribs were injured when they were playing around previously, and the next day, they met with acquaintances. As there didn't seem to be anything abnormal, her injury wasn't recognized."

How genuine does this sound to you?

Whether the statement is completely true or not, he has admitted that he has beaten her, and therefore IS an abuser. The truth is there in black and white. Since then, he has also delivered a consistent statement to the police. While the hard truth is being sugarcoated and the investigation continues, we await his conviction.

Returning to what I said earlier - "even I was shocked to hear this, as having been a fan of this celebrity in the past it felt out of character" - I honestly feel like such a fool, but I am more upset that I am not the only one. The backlash from his fans since the news was first released has been appalling. All over social media sites there have been young girls proclaiming that there is no way he could have done this and they have essentially rejected all claims and have turned to victim shaming instead of looking at the facts. I only hope that now since the release of his statement and his actions thereafter will persuade them to see why their actions were wrong.

This is one of the massive problems with fan culture that needs to be addressed urgently. Celebrities aren't who you think they are. It's as simple as that. In order for them to appeal to their fan-bases, they have agents and PRs who make sure that they are "the perfect person". Of course we all believed that he was a "good guy" - in interviews he's come across as the kind of man who would be a "perfect boyfriend". That's the point. He's a product. His image is being sold to his fans to make him buy-able. Don't believe every single thing you hear.

The fact that so many have been duped by the mask is terrifying. To have had people try and defend his actions and attack the victim seriously make me question whether or not the issues surrounding domestic abuse will ever go away. This isn't the first time we've witnessed extreme action on the internet. The Biebermania also sees vicious attacks on twitter against those to speak ill of Justin Bieber, and in extreme cases has even caused young girls to self harm in order to gain his attention.

In a time where we are finally starting to acknowledge that abuse is a huge problem in society, is this case a sign that more need to be done to show people that abused should never be condoned no matter what the circumstances are.

To end this blog post - which is a complete mess (sorry about that by the way - I haven't written in a long time), I'd like to return to the video that I mentionned right at the beginning of the post. The response to her video has more or less reiterated what I said about scary fangirls/made me more scared. I don't even know anymore.


I don't know how I come across in this but the discussion ought to be had. I have tried to present the facts and give opinions... thoughts?

Monday, 18 August 2014


Being a big fan of the BBC series Sherlock, I, along with many other Sherlockians, was very wary of the new American adaptation of Sherlock Holmes, Elementary. At first, before any of the episodes had aired, the general opinion of Elementary was that it can only be a rip off of Sherlock, considering how quickly it came about after Sherlock series 2 and how the BBC Sherlock team did not give permission for an American version but they did it anyway. What shocked people more was that Jonny Lee Miller, who had co-starred with Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch in Frankenstein, would be playing Holmes. Internet forums EXPLODED. Trying to be as unbiased as I could, I tried to stay out of the internet craziness and concentrate on finishing my copy of "Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Stories".

When it first aired a couple of months ago, the positive reviews came pouring in and I was rather excited to see what everyone was hyping about, being the nosey so and so that I am. As soon as it came on Sky Living I watched it, and thought I'd take it all in before I came to a judgement on it. But then decided that I couldn't possibly have an opinion on it after just one episode, and waited until I'd seen the next episode, then the next, and then the one after that. If I'm honest, I was just coming up with excuses to keep watching it. It is genuinely good and I don't think it's fair to just compare it to Sherlock, and I am not just saying that so that I don't have to choose between the two of them. Yes I am...

The pilot episode had to be taken with a pinch of salt. Being biased against the programme didn't help in any way, but we sat down and gave it a chance. Jonny Lee Miller is impeccable. No one can fault his performance as Sherlock Holmes; his take on the character is brilliant. He's strange, rude, and a genius and very witty. My Dad and I gave him the thumbs up immediately. What makes Sherlock a great character is how alien he seems being one of the only Brits in a sea of Americans, making him seem even more unique than before. Even having a female Watson doesn't bother me anymore. The Holmes/Watson dynamic is still intact, although it seemed to take a few episodes for it to get comfortable. I am a big fan of how Holmes treats Watson in Elementary. He sees her as his partner (most of the time), and I can see him treating her as his equal in the near future, as although no one can ever be his intellectual equal, she is ballsy and brave and is picking up many useful skills from Holmes, mirroring the relationship built up by Conan Doyle, in which Watson is able to start making his own deductions and help Holmes a great deal more than their first few cases together. Although the stories were initially slow and not mysterious enough to be worthy of a Holmes story (I figured out one of the murderers before Holmes even found the evidence that led to it once!) once they picked up speed they started to boggle your mind and have you amazed at the conclusion.

Small tributesto the original Conan Doyle stories are seen, even though the stories are brand new, such as the classic love interest speculation surrounding 'The Woman', Irene Adler, and Captain 'Gregson', the American version of Lestrade. I must nag a tiny bit about certain things, however. After coming across a random review comparing BBC Sherlock to Elementary on Tumblr, I've started to get annoyed at small things in the show. At first, I was really happy about the fact that Sherlock was a recovering drug addict and was open about his sex life; it seems like a very Sherlock-thing to do, and instantly made him different to Cumberbatch's Sherlock. BUT, this magazine had decided that they preferred Miller's version because he had his top off and it was 'yummy'? I disagree. Cumberbatch does not need to take his shirt off to impress the female audience. He didn't even show his arms or legs in any episodes and girls still swooned. And it's not like Miller would need to do that either, if I'm honest, as his Sherlock, despite his oddball arrogance, is also quite charming as well as witty and, obviously, intelligent. Taking his shirt off is part of the way his character does things, not necessarily because they need more lusting females watching it. (At least, I hope not...)

Other things that are getting on my nerves are things that are similar to Sherlock. It has to be said. Despite the different styles of both shows - Elementary being like CSI and BBC Sherlock being like short feature films - the music is unbelievably similar, as is the idea of the last frame on the opening sequence. I'm just very glad that text on the screen as Holmes makes his deductions was not included in this list, otherwise I know a few thousand people who would not be impressed at all.

Overall, I'm quite happy to watch Elementary, which is a brilliant adaptation of the Sherlock Holmes stories. Most of the people I've talked to about it have really enjoyed it, and other recent adaptations like the Guy Ritchie Films starring Robert Downey Jnr and Jude Law, who also make a fantastic traditional Holmes/Watson duo. I'm really curious to see how things progress and if there will be. Moriarty and a Moran reincarnation popping up at some point before the first season ends, and where they will take the Irene storyline. If you're a fan of Sherlock Holmes, or detective stories in general then I'd recommend it.

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Visual Stunners - part i

I have a thing for pretty movies. It's not really much of a secret. If a film has been shot well, then I tend to forget plot holes and small errors and just enjoy it. This post has been sitting in draft since August 2013, and since it has taken so long for me to return to this blog, I don't think people will mind if I break it up into bite-size chunks.

This first film is one of my favourite films and I absolutely did not mind rewatching it a few times to perfect this post. The cast is wonderful, the design and cinematography is breath-taking and the story is told in exactly the right way, in my opinion.

A Single Man (2009) - Tom Ford

Tom Ford's directorial debut does not disappoint. In this category of beautiful and stylish films, A Single Man is the first that came to mind when I compiled a list of "visual stunners". It's hard to describe without giving anything away, but it is the tale of a man, George (Colin Firth), who is having to cope with the sudden death of his partner, Jim (Matthew Goode). Without his lover he has lost sight of his future, and the film is set on the last day of his life. With a 60s backdrop and a fashion designer directing, the film does not fail to impress visually. The film is comprised of flashbacks intertwined with the events that occur on this day, and his love story is unraveled as the story goes on.

Colour is used really well, which I felt was important for the viewer, especially with regards to the flashback scenes. George's memories are our only windows into his soul and the only way we can understand his strange behaviour and decisions. Colour plays an important part in this as it gives us an indicator as to how he feels about each moment. George's wardrobe is monochromatic; everyday he wears the same thing - a black suit, a new white shirt and a skinny black tie. This is a] what was in fashion (and still is), b] a suggestion that he likes things to be structured and now that Jim is not around there is nothing compelling him to be different and c] perhaps he is still mourning Jim? After all, Jim is the love of his life.

Generally, every frame, every word spoken and every word left unspoken is striking, and the fact that everyone is extremely well dressed just puts the icing on the cake. Tom Ford's eye for style and imagery s a real delight and makes the story stay with you long after you watch it - "Fashion is fleeting, but film is forever."

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

I am an idiot.

For the first time in a long time, I have had a good day.

I have no idea why I was blessed with a good day, but I was. Until 5 minutes ago I had not been angry, or sad, and I talked a lot and I laughed and I smiled. These days are very rare for me. Spending more time with like-minded people put me in a good place and I got to be the person that I wanted to be for a while, knowing what I wanted to do and being inspired to get on with things - my EPQ project, this blog, etc.

I sat down at my desk, in a good mental place to finish writing one of the many posts that I have had in draft since August. This post was a masterpiece. It was a collection of my favourite "visual stunners". So, what did I do? I DELETED THE ENTIRE POST. I give up. I honestly just give up.

Posts on this blog will become more frequent in the coming weeks, when I stop crying about the blog I just deleted, since the "fans" have been begging to see another post.

Monday, 5 August 2013

Long time, no see.

Is it acceptable for me to return to blogging after constantly promising that I'd devote more time to it but then not posting anything for 3 months? Unfortunately, life got in the way again.

I've generally kept this to myself since it started, but now seems like the perfect time to get it off my chest.
Year 12 has been the hardest year of my life. I am aware of how awfully stupid that may sound to the old and wise, who will be thinking "Wait until you go to University!" or "Wait until the tax man comes knocking!" or whatever, but honestly - I know. So shut up. Let me wallow in my self pity until the next obstacle comes along, thank you very much.

Not only were my AS exams a lot more difficult than I anticipated, I was under a lot of pressure to do well at school consistently, not burn myself at work [if you have ever worked in a kitchen when it is really busy, you will understand my pain] and have to cope with the deterioration of one of my closest family members. In March, my Nan was diagnosed with breast cancer. During the Easter holidays, she suddenly started experiencing pain - the most pain she had ever felt in her life - and was admitted to hospital. She stayed there for a few days and was then moved to the Marie Curie Hospice in Solihull, where she stayed until she passed away on 25th May. During this time I was also meant to be revising for my AS exams, which went extremely badly, despite everyone telling me that I'm overreacting about it all. Either way, I've just been extremely unlucky but it's something that I've lived it and I wouldn't take any of it back.

However, it's not all doom and gloom. Since then, things have improved quite dramatically. On 1st May, I was appointed as House Captain of Warwick House at school [What team? WARWICK! What team? WARWICK! Warwick! GET YOUR HEAD IN THE GAME!] and I have a lovely shiny badge that I wear on my YSL blazer with pride. As a House Captain I feel like I've already done so much to contribute to our school's community, including saying the word "community" about 5 times in one minute when improvising a congratulatory speech on the last day of school. We organised/ran two major school events after we returned from study leave in June: Sports Day and House Festival - only a Camphillian could ever understand how much fun House Festival is. Although it was stressful, and a few small organisational issues made things hard on the day, House Festival was a huge success and most definitely THE BEST ONE EVER.

I've found that coping with and adapting to change extremely challenging, mainly because everything that happened so fast this year, but also because I don't want things to change. I don't want to grow up. I don't want to face my future. It's a bit silly, seeing as it's inevitable, but I really just want to sit down, enjoy my hobby and drink iced tea forever. I'm also really indecisive and I am scared to change because I don't want to regret anything I do, although ironically, this has meant that I've barely done anything, which I regret.

I don't really know where this blog post is going now. I started off begging for forgiveness, then I filled in the gaps that have been left open since I accidentally abandoned fionasbugle and now I've confessed my fears about the inevitability of growing up.

This has been a filler post. I have 5 posts lined up which should hopefully be up over the next few days. I also have another project that I'd like to share with anyone who takes time out to read my confusing blog entries - you must either really like films or really love me, which is definitely what I'll be needing to help me make this project a success.

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Top 3: Musicals

I suppose I've always loved a good show, and as soon as they make a film adaptation I fall in love with it, simply because I can watch and appreciate it whenever I please. Not every adaptation can live up to the Show, but there are a few exceptions.

The first of these is Top Hat. I believe that this was a film first and was then brought to the stage. It's brilliant. I personally have a huge thing for the 1930s - everything about it intrigues me from the fashion and music, to the shifts in society to the economic crises (can you tell I'm a history student?). Astaire and Rogers are an ideal duo and their chemistry is brilliant. The film is exactly how I think most people look back and remember the 1930s, except not everybody could sing and tap dance. I went to go and see the show last year with my nan and thoroughly enjoyed it, and our favourite song was "Cheek to Cheek". It's wonderful and light, easy to watch, funny, beautifully performed and easy to sing along to. Well worth a watch.

A childhood favourite of mine is Bugsy Malone. When I was in year 6 we decided to do our own version of Bugsy Malone for our end of year assembly. Unfortunately, I didn't get to take part because I went on holiday so I painted sets and joined in the choir, and I still regret not taking part to this day, even though I couldn't do anything about it. I liked the idea that it was a bunch of children in an adult world. The gangster theme and the weirdly likeable characters made the whole film enjoyable, and the songs are brilliant. It's weird to think that Jodie Foster was Tallulah. Weird. Weird. Weird. Buy the soundtrack, watch the film. You won't regret it.

Last but certainly not least, is Moulin Rouge. I just needed to fit it in somewhere. To me, this film is the epitome of perfection. I am a fan of Baz Luhrmann's style and even though I haven't been able to fully appreciate it up until now, it's always been a favourite film of mine. Two beautiful leads, an odd but strangely fairytale-like storyline and some stellar performances; what's not to love? A day does not go by without "Elephant Love Medley" being sung dramatically by me.
Jim Broadbent, Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor are truly magnificent and the song selection is brilliant and perfect. Okay. Bye.