Friday, 28 November 2014

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 - the verdict


Unsurprisingly, I had a fair amount to say about the latest Hunger Games film The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1. So much so that it was spread over a few sites. So here's my round-up.

For a comparison between the book (well the first half anyway) and the film, check out my book vs film review at The Hollywood News.

For my highlights from the film, check out '6 things to love about The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1' at Metro.

If - like me - you think Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen is worthy of so much more than a surfboard (not that there's anything wrong with surfboards!), check out 'Jennifer Lawrence deserves an Oscar for Katniss but why doesn’t The Hunger Games win big awards?'

What did you think of the film?

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Jennifer Lawrence makes surprise appearance at Serena LFF screening

Film fans were stunned and delighted last night when Jennifer Lawrence, multi-award-winning star of The Hunger Games, X-Men: Days of Future Past and American Hustle, made a surprise appearance ahead of the London Film Festival screening of her new film, Serena, along with the film's director Susanne Bier.

The film is a relatively small part of the festival but with the two leads played by Lawrence and her Silver Linings Playbook co-star, Bradley Cooper, it was bound to generate plenty of interest – though clearly few had expected either of the stars to make an appearance for the film’s premiere.

The room erupted in rapturous applause as Lawrence was introduced and, after an impressive build-up about the 'huge' surprise, the star joked that if the surprise was actually popcorn and not her then she was leaving.

The audience were almost too in awe to laugh, though Lawrence was undeterred and continued in much the same tongue-in-cheek manner. When Bier said to the audience that she hoped people enjoyed the film, Lawrence quipped 'if you don't [like it] just don't tweet about it'.

Looking elegant and striking in a simple black dress jacket and heels, the actress was able to keep the jokes at bay just long enough to thank the audience for supporting Serena, a film that has been a long time coming. 'Thank you guys so much for being here,’ she said. ‘I hope you enjoy it.'

And then she was gone, her flight back to LA waiting for her.

After Lawrence's fleeting introduction the audience seemed far too excited to settle into the film straight away but as the lights went down the whole room seemed to share a collective sigh.

Any Tweets or status updates would have to wait until after the film.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Doctor Who: The Re-imagining - fan-fiction script

When Matt Smith announced he was leaving Doctor Who, a feature I had written which asked the question ‘Is it time for a female Doctor Who?’ went viral – perhaps unsurprisingly. Many were appalled at the mere suggestion and I actually managed to get a second feature written based solely on the vitriolic comments the first article sparked.

Yet throughout all of this hatred, one pairing stuck in my mind. As I contemplated which actress (or actor – yes I was thinking of both!) might work really well as the new Doctor, Olivia Colman popped into my head and just wouldn’t leave.

Having seen her in Tyrannosaur I knew she could do drama; she could break your heart. And everyone knew already just how funny she was from her earlier TV work and films like Hot Fuzz. She seemed the perfect choice.

A female Doctor required a male companion in my mind too and it occurred to me that the loveable Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley to Harry Potter fans) might just be brilliant. He could be endearing, angry, feisty, stroppy - all the great marks of an interesting companion.

The pairing stuck with me, even after Peter Capaldi was announced as the replacement.

And so, I give you Doctor Who: The Re-imagining, a fun little script I wrote in which the Doctor (Olivia Colman) and her new assistant (Rupert Grint) go on their first adventure. I hope you like it!

Please take it in the context it was meant – a laugh!

Safe travels, Whovians xxx

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Book review: The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion

After the incredible success of The Rosie Project, Graeme Simsion's debut novel, Don and Rosie are back for The Rosie Effect and settling into married life in New York City.

Though things seem to be going well for the pair, the news that Rosie is pregnant sends events spiralling out of control in a way not even Don can handle and their relationship begins to feel the strain. Then Don's old friend and colleague Gene turns up and sets up camp in their home.

What follows is the brilliantly insightful humour, romance and honesty fans of this pairing have grown to love. Simsion proves he is so much more than a one-trick pony offering real drama and laughs in this eagerly-awaited sequel. 

The only thing that stops this book from utter perfection is the unavoidable lack of originality that made the debut such a phenomenal read. Yet, returning to Don and Rosie is such a complete delight that it matters not. It's like returning to the comfort of old friends.

The Rosie Effect is a joyous novel, full of charm, hilarity and warmth. Perfect reading for the approaching colder weather.

4.5/5 FOBLES

The Rosie Effect is published by Michael Joseph on 25th September.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

#Bookvsfilmclub update: Take note before you go to sleep...

The current #bookvsfilmclub story is Before I Go to Sleep, based on the thrilling debut novel from SJ Watson and starring Colin Firth, Nicole Kidman and Mark Strong.

The film arrives in cinemas on 5th September. For more information on how to get involved, check out Novelicious or follow @bookvsfilmclub on Twitter.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

The Fault in Our Stars #bookvsfilmclub report

The Fault in Our Stars was certainly a story that stayed with the #bookvsfilmclub. Days after watching, ‏@louisareid tweeted: ‘Still getting over #TFIOS film’.
That said, it didn’t have quite the same impact on many of us that the book did, possibly just because we read the John Green book first. As @GroylefinGirl tweeted: ‘loved the book, had already grieved so didn't need to do it again in the film’.

It seemed too that, though the book won the vote of which out of the two people preferred, overall the club was very impressed with the adaptation which ‏@GroylefinGirl said was ‘faithful to [the] book’. It kept the tone, the soul of Green's novel – and in that we were all in agreement. ‏@hmcami did say, though, that ‘the film missed the flow and background that you get in the book’ which was probably inevitable as it had to be trimmed to fit the length of a feature film.

There was certainly a lot of love for Laura Dern who plays Hazel’s mum in the film. ‏@louisareid noted that ‘In the book, I don't remember Hazel's mum being a character I rooted for, but in [the] film - I really felt for her.’ She went on to say that the ‘Saddest bits for me were with Hazel's parents, especially mum, amazingly played by L Dern.’ ‏@Abby_Chandler added: ‘What a legend’ and @GroylefinGirl tweeted ‘LOVE Laura Dern’.

You can read my full book vs film review at The Hollywood News.
What did you think of the adaptation? Join the debate at #bookvsfilmclub

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