Fame survives

fame_2009The remake of the 1980s film Fame has captured the heart of the original movie: the amazing talent of its actors. Fresh faces fill the screen with their talents of singing, dancing, acting and producing music and film.

Like the original Fame, it follows students through their four years at a performing arts school in New York. We are, however, introduced to new characters including singer Marco, actress Jenny, film director Neil, dancer Alice, classical pianist Naturi and rapper-actor Collins.

We see these students go through periods of doubt in themselves and their abilities, fall in love, discover new talents and we see them succeed. The movie portrays their love and passion for their art in such a way that you believe they want more than anything to live out their dreams.

The movies deals with issues that are forever relevant to its targeted teenage audience: underage drinking, disobeying parents, self-doubt, finding yourself, young love and the touchy topic of suicide. Its characters are widely varied in economic status, race and personality so each person can feel as though they relate to someone.


The way in which the movie presents the idea of suicide may be a bit extreme considering when I looked around the theatre there were many new teenagers and even kids who have yet to reach their teen years. Some might not understand what was happening, but they would certainly have looked to their parents for an explanation.

I wouldn’t call it a musical. Though the cast broke out in song and dance often, it wasn’t always as a way of telling the story. It was often just simply song and dance. For people who aren’t musical fans the movie would probably be an annoyance and maybe even a bore, but it does allow teenagers to see they aren’t the only ones who deal with such confusing emotions.

Whether the 2009 Fame lives up to the standard of the original is based on personal taste, but it did a great job at representing the heart and soul of the performing arts students and portraying their love for their art.


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Not just another chick flick

The Ugly Truth is in danger of being seen as just another chick flick. It contains all the ingredients that make up your typical chick flick. There are two guys and one girl. The ending is as predictable as ever. And, like many movies before it such as the recent movie He’s just not that into you, The Ugly Truth gives women advise on dating from a man’s point of view.the ugly truth

However, the typical beautiful, blonde woman and strong, handsome man lead this romantic comedy down a slightly new path. The conversations that take place between Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler’s characters, Abby and Mike, are a little more on the racy side than your average chick flick.

The movie’s trailer didn’t give away its secret weapon against critics who love to rave about “chick flicks all being the same”: the movies explicit nature. Sex is discussed in a way that makes it simply a meaningless act rather than an act of love. It is spoken about without restrain; no area of the topic is out of bounds. While many of the scenes, such as the one where Abby battles a vibrator while at a restaurant with her bosses, may seem like desperate attempts to get a laugh, they are successful.


Abby is your typical desperate woman who wants to find the perfect man to love her. Mike contests that her idea of love and anyone’s idea of love in fact, doesn’t exist. He claims that love isn’t real, but like the usual leading lady, Abby refuses to believe this. An ever common battle of the sexes takes place, and Abby eventually takes Mike’s advice on board in order to win over the “guy of her dreams”.

Gerard Butler is given all the racy, exciting and entertaining lines with Katherine Heigl is left to be like a puppy obeying his every word, doing as he says. The movie reads like a ‘How To’ guide for making men want you. Many women may be slightly misled into turning themselves into duplicates of this artificial woman described by Mike that men supposedly want, rather than being the beautiful women that they truly are.


The movie, while an unexpectedly racy and explicit one, is successfully funny with Gerard Butler’s character winning points from the shocking, yet hilarious things he says. Katherine Heigl plays her role well and portrays the desperate but essentially strong woman perfectly.

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A unique work of art

A day at the Sun Theatre is an experience like none other. You walk through the doors and into the foyer, which may seem small, but the effect it has on you is by no means small. You immediately feel as though you’ve walked through a time portal and into the early 1900s.

The Sun was bought in 1995 by Michael Smith, who according to The Mail “is what might be termed a godsend to cinematic history”. Smith commissioned renovations that have turned this old fashioned cinema into a unique work of art. The Sun, which originally opened in 1938, seated 1050 people and had only one screen, has been turned into six cinemas with many of the original features still in place.

It was my first time at the cinema and I was amazed at the beauty of it. However, luck wasn’t on my side. The projector for the cinema I was in wasn’t functioning correctly and we weren’t able to watch the movie.


Don’t let this deter you, as i have had a similar experience at a Village cinema once where the actual movie reel caught on fire. The Sun Theatre employees did everything they could to try get the projector to work, which unfortunately left us sitting there for 45 minutes which was a bit too long, but were unsuccessful.

There were already attributes that were screaming out to me. Aside from the obvious look of the cinema, the price of food was the first as it was cheaper than that at, for example, Village Cinemas. The seating was the second. The spacing and layout of the seats leave a great amount of leg space and the person in front of you, no matter how tall they are, are never in the way of the screen.

To get a better feel and understanding of the experience of the Sun Theatre I spoke to someone who has been “over 20 times, but under 30”. She recalled the very first time she went to the Sun Theatre and remembered thinking “wow, this is so fancy!”


When asked how watching a movie at the Sun Theatre differs from watching a movie at, for example Village cinemas, she had a lot to say. “There’s less annoying teenagers, there are only 2 movie previews rather than heaps of ads at the start, there’s a nicer atmosphere, and hot guys work there.” The choc tops also play a big role in the experience for her as they are “hand-made [and] delicious”. She loves the old, art deco style of the cinema and the fact that “you can drink alcohol there”.

The Sun Theatre provides a stylish, unique and affordable way of watching a movie in a beautiful and comfortable environment. I will definitely pay a visit to the 1900s again in order to fully experience it and would recommend it to anyone who loves to watch movies and try new things.

For more information about the Sun Theatre and its history, visit:

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The royal treatment

You walk through the glass doors, down the carpeted stairs and into an entirely new world. You are greeted immediately by a concierge, and are seated in the exclusive lounge where you are given a menu to browse through. From the minute you open the glass door and look in, you feel like a whole new person – you feel like royalty.


The staff members at Crown Casino’s Village Gold Class cinemas attend to your every need and ensure that you completely understand the services they provide. They make you feel comfortable and are very friendly. The waiters take your food and drink orders while you’re in the lounge and when your cinema is ready they escort you to your seat.

The waiters show you where the call button is, which enables you to receive service during the movie for ordering more food or drink, or whatever needs you may have. They also show you where the seat recline button is located.

There is little to no interruption when the waiters bring in food and drink, they are never in the way of the screen and the main time that you actually notice them is when they are attending to your needs, not anyone else’s.

Every step of the way the waiters at Crown’s Gold Class cinemas perform their jobs with class, ensuring that you have the most relaxing and enjoyable experience possible.

Once you are seated, it only takes a second for you to realise the level of comfort you are about to experience. The seats are incredibly soft and comfortable. They recline back so far that you’re almost lying down. The way the seats have been spaced out is in a way that the person in front of you is never in the way of the screen.


The normal Village Cinema candy bar menu is available to you in Gold Class as well as a special Gold Class menu. The Gold Class menu contains entrées, mains, sides, desserts and beverages, including cold, hot and alcoholic. The foods available, however, are pricy and fairly fancy. Your average person who’s not used to dining in upper class, expensive restaurants might not find much of it appealing.

I braved my apprehensions that were due to the expense and unknown foods and ordered the double wagyu burgers served with shoestring fries, costing $24.00, for dinner, and the chocolate orange mousse and chocolate brownie with chocolate sauce, costing $14.00 for dessert. They were delicious and definitely worth gamble.

With only 31 seats, as well as a wheel chair space, you are assured that your movie watching experience at Crown Casino’s Gold Class cinemas will be an intimate, undisturbed and classy one. The staff members attend to your needs without complaint, the level of comfort is incredible and the food beats your expectations of it. Paying $37.00 for a Gold Class ticket is definitely worth it if you love to watch movies and want to do so in style and comfort.

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Beautiful disaster

my_sisters_keeperMy Sister’s Keeper tells a story that has been told many times by the cinematic world. It tells the story of a family struggling to come to terms with a loved one who is suffering from a fatal cancer. The movie powerfully and emotively depicts the story from Kate’s memories through a scrapbook she has made for her mother.

Kate’s outlook was dismal so her parents conceived a baby, named Anna, who would be a donor match and could endure painful procedures to try save Kate. At 11-yrs-old Anna hires a lawyer to sue her parents for the right to make her own medical decisions so she doesn’t have to donate a kidney to her dying sister.

This is a new twist to the cancer stories told by movies, one which may seem selfish and even disgusting, but one which brings out your emotions. The movie, however, doesn’t follow the court case but rather the impact Kate’s cancer has on each family member.

The actors play their roles in a way that is so convincing that you feel like it is a real family you are watching. When they are all together it is believable and natural. Cameron Diaz plays the role of Sara Fitzgerald, Kate’s mother. The character is almost hysterical as she does everything in her power to try save her oldest daughter and make her happy, and Diaz does this in an intensely realistic fashion.


The movie shows the ugly side of cancer. Kate’s head and neck are covered in bruises, her eyes are blood shot and her lips are dry and pale. It is a sickly and even disturbing look. When you look at her you can’t see past the illness, much like with cancer patients in real life.

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The director clearly wanted this movie to be a tear jerker, and it definitely is, but Nick Cassavetes may have tried a bit too hard. The camera moves in on people’s faces so slowly that it feels as though he is almost trying to force you to cry from seeing the sadness written all over the characters faces. In the background of every heartbreaking scene is a sad song to match it.

The acting in this movie saved it from possibly being a disaster that would have been caused by the overwhelming desperation for audience tears. It is a sad and beautiful movie which may move you to manufactured tears, but none the less real tears.

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Harry Potter magic lives on

harry-potter-and-the-half-blood-prince1Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince had a lot to compete with. In the two years since the previous Harry Potter film had hit the big screen, author Stephenie Meyer had won over the hearts and minds of children, teenagers and even adults all over the world with the Twilight series. She introduced us to a world like none other, just as J.K. Rowling once did with Harry Potter. You had to wonder whether Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince would be as mysterious and magical as the previous Harry Potter films.

As a Twilight fan myself I was unsure of whether Harry Potter would seem as out-of-this-world as it used to. But being the film buff that I am, I saw it anyway. Harry Potter was going to have to work harder than usual to keep my attention and to keep me from falling asleep as I was tired from a long day. Potter was true to form. Right from the beginning I was completely engrossed in the film; there was never a chance that I’d fall asleep.

I’m not your average crazed Harry Potter fan. I have never read the books; I’m just a fan of the films. I had no preconceived thoughts of what the movie was going to be about. Everything was a surprise for me, including that it was without a doubt the darkest of the Harry Potter films to date. I didn’t feel the same way I usually do when watching a Harry Potter film. I no longer wished to be a part of his world. This doesn’t mean it was a bad movie by any means. In fact I found the darkness to be interesting and the magic, like before, was still there.

Spells and potions weren’t the only magic that the young witches and wizards dabbled in.  Through the darkness shone some much needed light in the form of love. The way we see them talk of their crushes and flirt in a PG fashion was well done as it shows their innocence and happiness; after all they are just teenagers.

The obsession surrounding the potions book that was previously owned by ‘the half-blood prince’ (whose real name I won’t reveal as I would hate to spoil it for anyone who hasn’t seen the movie) is lost on me. Whether the movie just didn’t explain it enough, or if it would be a criticism I would have of the book also I can’t say, but I feel that if you took it out of the movie it wouldn’t have a great impact.


Don’t listen to people who tell you “the book is better” or “I hated the ending, the fight scene wasn’t big enough”. It is a movie worthwhile seeing if you enjoy a mystery edging on the dark side but still with a hint of comedy, or even if you just enjoy a great storyline.

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A world outside of your own…

Put simply, movies are a form of entertainment. But the effect a movie, good or bad, can have on you is far from simple.

A movie has the power to make you feel for the characters. You feel happy when they’re happy; you feel the excitement of an action scene; you feel nervous and sometimes scared when you can see that something bad is going to happen; you feel angry when they are being wronged; and you even feel sad when there is heartbreak or death. Movies have the power to bring a smile to your face, tears to your eyes or bring you to the edge of your seat. They can make you appreciate life and the joys it brings you.

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But the way movies can make you feel isn’t the only effect they have on us. We all have our dramas. Work worries, family problems, school work overload and friend troubles are among the countless number of issues we all face. Sometimes you need to get away from it all. You need to chill out and forget about all of your problems.

Movies can be an escape from our troubled lives. They have provided me with another world filled with excitement, love, sometimes pain, but a never ending escape from my real life dramas. I’ve attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, befriended vampires in Forks, fallen in love aboard the Titanic, danced at the Moulin Rouge and cried when Harry gave his life to save the world in Armageddon. These movies, as well as hundreds of others, provide me with the outlet I need as I’m sure they do for many other people.

The number of ways you can watch and experience a movie varies enormously. Whether it’s the company you have, where you’re watching it, what you’re wearing, what you’re eating, what mood you’re in or even what time of day it is all have an impact on how you watch the movie. What you get out of a movie and how it makes you feel is greatly affected by all of these factors as they affect your level of comfort and in turn your state of mind.1st blog pic

When talking about a movie I think it is important not only to say what you did and didn’t like about the movie. I think for what you say to really mean anything you need to talk about where you watched the movie, how you watched the movie and how it made you feel.

Not every entry will simply be a review of a movie. I will also review cinemas as they have a great impact on how you experience the reel world – the movies.

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