Thursday, April 12, 2012

Hungry Games

Oooh my beloved hawt Katniss

Hola~ It has been a while since I last posted a movie review and here I am first time ever blogging from a cyber cafe. The Hunger Games is one of the most awaited movies for me in 2012. I never read the book franchise neither do I know the franchise even existed before I watched the trailer. The trailer looked very promising and it has a very interesting concept so I went to watch the movie the first week it premiered. What was my verdict on this movie? It was GREAT!!! XD.


The Hunger Games was described by IMDB as....

"In a dystopian future, the totalitarian nation of Panem is divided between 12 districts and the Capitol. Each year two young representatives from each district are selected by lottery to participate in The Hunger Games. Part entertainment, part brutal retribution for a past rebellion, the televised games are broadcast throughout Panem. The 24 participants are forced to eliminate their competitors while the citizens of Panem are required to watch. When 16-year-old Katniss's young sister, Prim, is selected as District 12's female representative, Katniss volunteers to take her place. She and her male counterpart Peeta, are pitted against bigger, stronger representatives who have trained for this their whole lives."


All Hail Hitler!!


Gary Ross has directed a couple of movies prior to The Hunger Games, none that I have seen before, all seemed decently rated but they all seem not as successful as the recently premiered. As mentioned earlier, this movie has a very strong fan base and a very interesting concept, none ever popularized before (at least from any American movie). I know some movie critiques will say that the movie is actually stealing the concept from Battle Royale (a Japanese movie dated back in 2000 by Kinji Fukasaku) but actually little that they know this movie was based on this popular children game. Just kidding LOL.

Only 1 hippo will survive the Hungry Hippo games, may the odds be ever in your favor. Nom! Nom! Nom!

Lets start with the story line. The overall story line was decent and sometimes a little bit too cliche it becomes... uncliche. Reverse psychology... I like it. I however saw a lot of hidden potential opportunity of this movie that was not utilized. Unlike its predecessor (Battle Royale... lol ok im cutting it out), Hunger Games lacks character developments of other districts which might be very interesting. Hunger Games also could use the opportunity to use the elements of surprise of clever scheming and betrayal. That would add more spice to those who like interesting twists... like me :) 

I also dislike the fact that all the tests/hardships were focused on the protagonist by the GM. But I will assume that they still give obstacles to those from other districts its just that they don't show it to the viewers. I am sure all the so-called flaws and misses in this movie was due to the same normal problems all movie adaptations from popular novels had; the difficulty to fit everything in a novel into a 120 minutes movie.

They said Hunger Games was better... well I guess I have to respect their last words :)

The main spotlight of this movie for me was the acting by Jennifer Lawrence. She played the role of Katniss Everdeen, a normal girl living with her mother and daughter in District 12. She led a difficult life resulting to the reason behind her awkward distant behavior. She was the first from her district who has ever... volunteered to be the tribute for the Hunger Games to replace her sister whose odds... seemed not to be in her favor. Hahaha.

Another star in this movie was Elizabeth Banks who played Effie Trinket. Her "Johnny-Depp-Acting" (yes it is a noun now) was quite remarkable. Stanly Tucci was awesome too. It takes exceptional talent to play the roles of futuristic characters who have weird culture and behaviors and both of these actors nailed them. Josh Hutcherson has improved a lot in his acting career but his acting was mediocre in this one. I am expecting more from him in Catching Fire. If it take too long to come out I might end up reading the book.

Effie Trinket and Katniss Everdeen singing the duet"The Boy Is Mine" dedicating it to me XD

Overall, the movie was a very good watch. A definite watch for fans alike and a very interesting watch for normal people who looks for something to do during your free time. A very strong recommendation from me. The box office collection of 33.1M USD exceeded the 3D remake of James Cameron's, Titanic by double. That's a good sign no?



On February 22nd, four weeks before The Hunger Games' release, Lionsgate began selling advance tickets. Not only did the ticket sales break the one-day record originally held by The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, but also accounted for 83% of the ticket sales of the day.

The name of the main character, Katniss, is derived from the name of a group of edible plant species, genus "Sagittaria", commonly known as "arrowhead". This is a reference to the character's archery skills.


Storyline - 8
Acting - 8
Cinematography - 7
Replayability - 6
Overall - 7.25

IMDB - 7.6
Rottentomatoes - 85%

I guess that’s all for now. Good day freaks~

Sunday, April 8, 2012

An Angel's Smile

Friday prayers had just finished and the day is scorching hot. It is like these times when you wish there are some cendol stalls around to quench the parching thirst deep in your throat. Blurry mirages seem to be visible on the road due to the heat and I have to walk a great deal of distance to get to my destination. Wiping the sweat off my forehead for what seemed to me for a hundredth time, I could see far ahead along the way a cafĂ© called “Ipoh Kopitiam”.


“Since you are not deciding let’s eat there!” she said with a hint of glee.

“Why on earth do you want to eat at Ipoh Kopitiam? I thought by now we both should be tired of Ipoh”

“I don’t know. I just feel like it. You always admit that when I follow my instinct, good things turn out”

“But I hate kopitiams! They serve awful food and I don’t drink coffee!”

She pouted and I conceded, as usual.

We both studied in a local university in Perak back around 2004-2008 and Ipoh seemed to be the nearest city. Of course, we did not know each other back then. I was pretty much a recluse rotting in my own dormitory playing computer games only occasionally going out because of two things; classes and food (most of the time because of the latter). Besides, she was my junior and our activities and interests seemed to be totally opposite we never crossed path.

She joined the same accounting firm as mine after graduating. We worked together reporting to the same superior for a couple of months before we had our first conversations. I was never good with strangers so it is obvious that she made the first move to talk and introduced herself.

“Hey, are you always like this?” she asked, casually, like it is the most natural thing to do.

“Like what?”

“Like that! You are always so quiet and not sociable. No one will approach you if you stay on like that.”

“I don’t really care. I am fine with how I am right now.”

“Well it’s a shame.” and then she walked away. “It’s Hana by the way.” glancing back for a short moment and then continue walking towards her cubicle.

Those were the first few words that we exchanged. We started dating a few months after. I couldn’t exactly recall when was it the first time we started the dating spree and for what reason. We went out for dinners and movies several times. Unlike other normal couples, we do not have any labels for our relationship. I was technically not her boyfriend and she wasn’t my girlfriend either, and we both were comfortable that way.

“Hey are you going to order something?” she asked, breaking my train of thoughts.

“Ah yes I’m having whatever she’s having” I responded subconsciously to the waiter.

The waiter scowled as he walked away for I had wasted his time. It is not that it is my intention to do that. It is just my thoughts easily derail and before I knew it, people get angry because I was staring into nothingness or being unresponsive.

“You are boring.” she said without feeling at least bit guilt.

I raised my face, confused.

“You always played safe and you are not adventurous at all. For instance, you ordered the same dish as I did. Don’t you ever want to try something else or at least have your own choice?”

“I treat any food as sources of energy to the body. I barely care about the taste of food, as long as it is edible and all the nutrients are sufficient.”

She seemed to be not satisfied with my explanation but conceded the argument almost immediately. She took out a magazine which she just bought just now from a plastic bag and started unwrapping it. It is still an exciting mystery to me how women likes to read those crappy magazines filled with celebrity news and updates. I think it is the exact same perception from women towards men’s hobbies and interests. I guess we do come from two different planets.

The food arrived and we had our peaceful meal together. The humidity of the air and the swirling waves of wind coming from the ceiling fan were pleasant. The radio was playing a very familiar tune I could barely recognize. The room was cozy and I did feel at home; and she was in place; she feels like home.

She raised her head and my heart skipped a beat. Only seconds later I realized that she was staring right through me. She wore this heartbreaking facial expression I’ve never seen before my whole life. I turned and try to catch what she was looking at but I saw nothing.

I turned back facing her as she continue her read. I need to ask her what she saw that changed her disposition so suddenly. The sadness in her eyes made my heart break. I need to ask her the reason so badly but I am afraid that it’ll worsen the situation. I carefully arrange the words in my head, opened my mouth but nothing came out but a short sigh. It continued to be what seemed to me the longest silent meal I have ever been to.


“Hey dood are you ok?” Asyraf asked.

I blinked a few times, just like those who react after being under a strong hypnosis. As a matter of fact, I do feel like I just woke up from a very long dream. I did not realize how long have I been staring into nothingness up until Asyraf noticed that something is wrong with me. I looked around and realized that I have walked a fair amount of distance from the last place that I was conscious of my whereabouts.

I frantically look around for the Ipoh Kopitiam and when I found it, I saw Farhana sitting across someone who appears to be…me. She was there looking straight at me with that exact same sadness on her white porcelain face. As I was trying to change my direction towards her and was about to start running, she smiled. It was the most beautiful smile I have ever seen, those of one might mistaken would come from an angel.

Seeing her smile halted my movements. I stayed still where I was standing for a few seconds and turned back to the original direction I was facing. I knew I had to move on. I tried to take a step forward but my right foot seemed so heavy. I tried to move my foot but it doesn’t seem to budge an inch.

It took every ounce of effort I had when I finally managed to move my foot. The second my right foot sets back on the hot steamy road is when I realized that I return to hearing moving cars and pedestrians chatting, those you normally could hear on a busy Friday. I felt that the world came back to its original course after a long halt.

The few steps onwards seemed easier to take and I felt like a huge conscious burden had been lifted off my back.

“Yeah… I’m fine”

“………………… Weirdo”