movie rec list from a movie nerd in no particular order
PLEASE exercise caution if you watch any of these movies, i’m sure there is a lot of triggering content so just be safe!!!
Pride (2014) - Tells the story of a group of gay people in the 80s fighting for another oppressed group’s rights. The acting is phenomenal and the cinematography is very impressive, the soundtrack didn’t stand out for me, but it was still good. Sing Street (2016) - A boy tries to impress a girl by starting a band, but goes on a journy of self discovery learning about both himself and her. The soundtrack is fucking amazing. Costuming stands out a lot, but the acting and cinematography were, of course, amazing as well. The Girl King (2015) - One of the only good movies to come out in 2015 imo, the Girl King tells the story of Queen Christina of Sweden and her struggles as a ruler as well as her relationship with Ebba Sparre, her lesbian lover. Dead Poets Society (1989) - A boy starts going to a fancy prep school and makes friends with a wonderful group of boys. These boys are inspired by their teacher (Mr Keating, playing by the late great Robin Williams) to start questioning authority. Big Eyes (2014) - The wonderful story of Margaret Keane, an artist who had all of her work and millions of dollars stolen from her for years by her husband as he took credit for her work. Honestly a beautiful film, it stands out in color and soundtrack, using both to accentuate the emotions conveyed by the scene, but the underlying themes. Whip It (2009) - A guilty pleasure but still a relatively good movie. Whip It follows Ellen Page as she begins roller derby in the late 70s (I believe) and her struggle with growing up and high school, as well as a Hella Rad Ending. The cinematography is good, but the soundtrack could have been better. I love it overall, but it really Could Have Been Gayer. Finding Vivian Maier (2014) - I watched this last night, and it’s officially one of my favorite documentaries like…Ever. It follows a guy who bought a bunch of photo negatives at an auction and goes on a journey to discover the life of the photographer. It’s amazing, inspiring, and I absolutely love everything about it. The soundtrack fit the overall story well, and the emotional interviews really do add to it. Operation Avalanche (2016) - A “found footage” film about two guys faking the moon landing. That’s all I can say. It’s fucking amazing. The way that it’s filmed and acted with very little script and such a low budget allowed the creators to really be open with how they made the final product, and honestly it’s such a good and believable film. I just….Love it. It’s one of those “enough said” movies. I shouldn’t need to sell it to you. The Neon Demon (2016) - This is one of the only horror movies that I like, and one of the reasons is that it does not have any jumpscares in it at all. It’s pure psychological horror. The colors/scenes are clearly made to be pretty as opposed to realistic, and it’s a very aesthetically pleasing movie. However, if you are triggered by anything, don’t watch this movie. It’s beautiful, but its fucked. up. Childhood favorites: The Goonies (1985) The Princess Bride (1987) The Sandlot (1993) Matilda (1996) School of Rock (2003)
Times of their lives - Here’s one of my favorite moments from the Matt & Jenna era of Doctor Who. In March 2013, the two did a photo shoot for the digital version of the Times Magazine in the U.K. The cover shot showcased a very innovative use of the Doctor’s sonic screwdriver. Clever!
P.S. Peter Capaldi once said that Jenna Coleman “is a star…an absolute Audrey Hepburn!” Judging by this short video on YouTube, Peter is exactly right.
It’s here! I had it in my mail, finally! The first issue of the Kalafina Harmony Fanclub Magazine! First things first, I think I won’t post anything from this magazine except the following below. Although I’d love to, I don’t have a scanner to provide you with some quality content, especially photos. Someone will do it in the near future, I am sure of it, so just be a little more patient. I’ll just inform you about the content, so you can get a nice impression of what to expect :) If you are in desperate need of a translation, you can, of course, ask me, too. I apologize for the bad photo quality. The lighting in my room really sucks… and I just realized too, that my camera did not focus correctly on the photos… sorry v.v
University has only started for a week, and I already have so much work to do ! Especially in Japanese. I’m also busy with rewriting my notes from last year (which I obviously should have done during the holidays but oh, well) and it’s taking me most of my days.
I dunno why, but I wanted to share a photo of one of my chickens. Meet Bandit. She’s currently one of my absolute favorite chickens and was part of the batch I hand raised this last summer. Bandit is a TOTAL sweetheart and I like to bring her up whenever people think chickens are never friendly or will let you touch them. I tell ya what, this gal LOVES to jump onto my lap and snuggle down for pets. She’s super soft too. Very nice for when I’m having a down day. She’s not the only one of our birds who like lap cuddles, but she’s one of the two most likely to regularly hop up there. xD
@the-button-harlequin, @sevi007, your ideas have been turned into something cute. I said I would do it and here it is. :D With a short fic to go along with it. The idea was too cute, I couldn’t stop myself.
This was from my first official portrait session (I only shot street prior) and to this day, is one of my absolute favorite shoots. Everything just…..fucking aligned, man.
I wanted to learn how to capture people and whether I’d even like it. So I asked around for willing models. My buddy told me he’d find a model and not only did he actually do what he said he would, he found me TWO!
Then I made the foolish mistake of not checking the weather. Turned out it was snowing that day. BUT it also turned out that overcast light (from the light snow) works out better for photos. On top of that, Ajee (the model pictured here) didn’t miss a beat nor mind the falling temp. She was a trooper the whole way through and her style was on point! We established a rapport and the shoot just kinda took a life of it’s own. I was so unorganized for this, that the shoot could have gone really badly….but it didn’t.
After this shoot, I knew I wanted to keep exploring photography and fashion. It gave me the assurance I needed to move forward with confidence and find my artistic voice. The search goes on, but this shoot right here is always going to be at the core of it.
Anyway, I guess the point of this, for any of you readers, is that sometimes you gotta take a chance and just dive into something. I’ll be the first to admit that I had later shoots after this one that bombed, but sometimes you just need ONE success to give you the strength to keep going. This session is exactly that for me.
S.N: I couldn’t get myself to edit the flyaway hair in this shot. I felt like it gave it character.
My absolute favorite is Alexander Skarsgård and Onata Aprile in What Maisie Knew, on the set, or just in general. Those two together were just sunshine & pure joy.
When I first read that Alex was going to be in WMK, I kept asking WHY?? Why would he be in a movie based on a book written in the 1800’s about a little girl? (I had never read the novel before.) Then this photo came out of one of their first days on set:
I was instantly floored - so ready and onboard with this movie I couldn’t wait to see it.
Then this photo:
I mean, are you kidding me with these photos? And that is just them hanging on set.
Besides Onata being one of the cutest kids ever and instantly likable, her and Alex together were almost too much.
They were so adorable at TIFF when he held her the entire time at the Q&A after the 2nd screening and she played with his necklace there too.
Plus the NY and LA screenings
They were such a delight together regardless where they were. (Including their interviews)
Plus she loved to use him as her human jungle gym
And since I know you love Lincoln, here are a few more faves with Onata/Maisie:
First things first. This one I was fangirling about within the first 5 minutes of the movie and I hope some other people caught it. Look at the back of Yama’s jacket.
It’s the symbol 山 which means “mountain” and one of it’s pronouciations is (wait for it…) Yama. So his name means mountain and he has his name on the back of his jacket. As someone who is studying Japanese, I just really appreciated Disney doing their research on this one.
I’ve heard lots of people claim that this small, out-of-focus figurine is Ralph. I’d like to think so. :)
3. So many things in the police station!
Let’s see, we’ve got bolt…
and the directors of Tangled…
4. Oh, and while Hans is wanted, Baymax takes him out with his super fist thing.
5. A shoutout to their short, “Feast”
“Φst” is the Greek letter phi (Φ) combined with “st,” which gives you “feast”
You know, for all the half-bloods out there who just casually know Greek.
6. Chicken Little hanging out on a sign
7. Photos on the wall
In this scene, you’ll notice Mochi (the cat) in a Stitch Costume as well as a Traditional Japanese Photo of Tadashi and his Parents that I would assume was taken before Hiro was born.
8.The one everybody knows and loves: Stan Lee
Best cameo yet.
BONUS RANT ABOUT JAPANESE THINGS
I’ve been studying Japanese for about 2 years now and I went to Tokyo last summer. Three years ago, I went to San Francisco on a Senior Trip. I just absolutely love how they blended two of my favorite cities together. it was truly magical. I could go on and on, but I just have to point this one thing out because I truly hope that everyone got this.
Golden gate spirit gates ahhhh
For those of you who didn’t pick up on this cleverness, this is a Japanese Spirit Gate:
This is the Golden Gate Bridge (in San Francisco)
This is the bridge in San Fransokyo. DO YOU GET THAT THIS BRIDGE IS A PUN.
There are so many things to be said and I’m sure more easter eggs will be found. But that’s all for now and this obnoxiously long post of mine. Most likely more to come.
Last week, I was delighted to find Sanne’s (booksandquills) and Marion’s (marionhoney) BookTube footage of the Indie Bookshop Crawl in London. There was a contest to see how many independent bookshops YouTubers and bloggers could visit in a single day, a spirited initiative to drive business back to the “little guys” of the book world.
Inspired by their charming videos, I decided to engineer a bookshop crawl of my own, targeting the myriad of independent book sellers in San Francisco. The goal: to visit as many indie bookshops as time and public transportation would allow. Instead of collecting stickers, I committed to purchasing at least one book from every shop. My boyfriend graciously decided to join me, and added to his own collection along the way.
Beautiful day by the Bay – I never get tired of this view.
We started with Book Passage, a little store on the backside of the Ferry Building. I didn’t see any used books here, but loved all the personalized recommendations and the display featuring books from California. Front and center was Edan Lepucki’s debut novel, California, which was my first purchase on the book crawl.
My boyfriend had an interesting exchange with the shopkeeper here. The man told him that while customers always ask if he’s read this novel or that one, no one ever bothers to ask him what he’s read lately. I believe he recommended something akin to Doctor Zhivago.
Our next stop, Chronicle Books, proved a little more upscale in its decor. This local publisher is nationally distributed, and each book featured in the shop was created by them. No adult novels or YA here, just a lot of cookbooks, children’s literature, and gift books.
I died with laughter over Jeffrey Brown's Vader’s Little Princess, a picture book depicting Darth Vader and a pre-adolescent Princess Leia. I bought the 30-postcard set to send to friends, and may include some in the giveaway if y'all are interested.
I loved the streamlined display – it made it very easy to see what was in stock.
This kills me.
One reason I love this city so much is the number of affordable, alternative taxi services available. We had some credits to use with Lyft and used that service to get to 24th Street in the Mission district.
Third on our list was Paper: Press on Works, which is an adorable niche bookstore filled with expensive stationery and vintage photography and art books (miscellaneous plays, children’s literature, novels, and poetry were also scattered around the store). I came away with Promising Young Women by Suzanne Scanlon, which promised a novel similar to one of my all-time favorites, Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar.
My boyfriend had the good fortune to select a novel that was written by the shopkeeper himself – who gave it to him for free!
I adore the cover of this book.
A little ways down the block was the first of two bookshop co-ops, Adobe Books & Arts Cooperative. I loved the feel of this store. It was very cozy and inviting, and the first shop we visited that offered couches and comfortable chairs for prospective buyers. They also had a wide range of contemporary literature, which was a big plus for me after browsing the limited stock of the previous two booksellers.
Outside, they offered classics and children’s books for a dollar.
I was waffling between a water-stained, annotated copy of Lolita and a hefty hardcover edition of The Circle, but decided on something a little prettier and more compact: A Christmas Memory by Truman Capote.
I first read Capote on a holiday in Scotland and fell madly in love with his writing. I expect good things from this one.
After a brief stop at Philz Coffee to rest, caffeinate, and read, we headed a few blocks down the street toward Alley Cat Bookstore & Gallery. This was easily my favorite shop so far that day. It’s spacious, sunny, and incredibly well-stocked with a mix of used and new volumes. Towards the back of the store, there are two rows of chairs and a gallery of photographs. Currently on display is a collection of photos taken in abandoned buildings and ghost towns – absolutely fascinating.
This is but a fraction of their stock. I could’ve spent hours browsing the shelves here.
It took me a while, but I finally settled on a softcover copy of Neil Gaiman's The Ocean at the End of the Lane. Gaiman is one of the few authors that I trust implicitly, even without a synopsis of his books or a recommendation to go on.
Our fourth and final stop in the Mission was Modern Times Bookstore Collective, another shop with a great community feel. I read reviews on Yelp that said this place was hard to find, but unless you’re blind you shouldn’t have a problem – it’s very colorful and easy to spot!
Modern Times had a small used section towards the back of the store, but the bulk of their stock tended towards new, full-priced editions. I was immediately torn between One More Thing and Boy, Snow, Bird, and eventually settled on Novak’s debut as the next addition to my library.
One thing I especially appreciated about this store was its selection of Spanish books and local history.
By this point in the day, we were starting to feel a little worn down. We hopped in a cab to the last store, Green Apple Books, and ducked into a neighboring bar to catch the last of the Giants game, grab a couple drinks, and – you guessed it – read.
Green Apple Books is one of my favorite San Francisco haunts, though it is not nearly close enough to public transportation for me to venture out there more than once or twice a year. They have an impressive selection of both new and used literature, and I was swimming in book recommendation heaven with their extensive displays. I couldn’t escape Green Apple with fewer than three books: Alain de Botton's News: A User’s Manual, Oliver Sacks' The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Tales, and a softcover copy of Dave Eggers' The Circle, which I’d already read and loved earlier this year.
Pictured in the background: My current bookshelf.
With our wallets slimmed and our energy zapped, we headed back to the East Bay to recuperate from our day. I loved getting to sample the indie shops in San Francisco – it was a great way to get out of my comfort zone and explore the city while adding to my home library. At the end of the day, we had visited seven booksellers and purchased 16 books (nine for me, seven for him). In a couple weeks, I might try this again in Berkeley and Oakland… stay tuned!