Harry Styles on Saturday Night Live

Now, there aren’t many people I would stay up for until 4:30am on a Saturday night, but that’s exactly what I did last Saturday night (15th April 2017). Why was this? It was because Harry Styles was the musical guest on Saturday Night Live, and because of the time difference (it started at 11:30pm in New York), it started at 4:30am in the UK.

We had heard rumours that Harry was going to appear in some skits with the host, Jimmy Fallon, and that as well as singing his first solo single, Sign Of The Times, that he would be singing a second song from him upcoming album Harry Styles. So, as you can imagine, we were all very excited!

Not only did Harry sing Sign Of The Times and Ever Since New York, he also took part in two sketches: one where he hilariously impersonated Mick Jagger in a time traveller’s edition of Family Feud (where Jimmy Fallon played both a 1977 and a 2017 version of John Travolta!), but he was also in a sketch set in the Civil War.

The feedback from non-One Direction fans has been simply amazing; so many people basically saying “I don’t like One Direction but that Harry guy can sing!” I’m so pleased for him that people are taking off their One Direction-tinted glasses and seeing what we’ve seen for the past seven years; that Harry is a talented guy with a lot more to show.

On Friday it will be three months until the release of Dunkirk, so hopefully people will go to watch it with a different idea of Harry than before. He shouldn’t be disregarded simply because he is “in a boyband”, he should be judged for the talented man he is. I know I go on about One Direction, but I feel like a proud mum a lot of the time and it’s always lovely to have positive things to say about them ūüôā

I’ve included the videos of Harry on Saturday Night Live below, he was simply amazing.

Film Review: To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar (1995)

To Wong FooStarring: Wesley Snipes, Patrick Swayze and John Leguizamo
IMDb synopsis: Three drag queens travel cross-country until their car breaks down, leaving them stranded in a small town.
(Source: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0114682/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1)

My verdict: I had never watched To Wong Foo, and Michelle knows how much I love The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, as outlined in my last review, so she decided to show me it. I really loved it! It’s still sad to see Patrick Swayze on screen, such an amazing talent, taken too early. Having grown up watching Dirty Dancing more times than is healthy as a teenage girl, Patrick Swayze will always hold a special place in my heart. He is fabulous in To Wong Foo, as the stunning drag queen¬†Vida Boheme. Vida ties in first place in the “Drag Queen Of New York” contest with¬†Noxeema Jackson (Wesley Snipes), and together they journey to Hollywood to take part in the “Miss Drag Queen of America Pageant”.¬†“Drag princess” Chi-Chi Rodriguez (John Leguizamo) tags along, though disaster befalls them and their car breaks down, eventually leaving them stranded in the¬†small town of Snydersville. The rest of the film documents their time in¬†Snydersville, which is sadly inhabited by a small bunch of locals who don’t take too kindly to Vida, Noxie and Chi-Chi. Will they make it Hollywood in time? You’ll have to watch!

Rating: 5 glittery ballgowns out of 5

Film Review: The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994)

Priscilla
Starring
: Hugo Weaving, Guy Pearce, Terence Stamp, Bill Hunter

IMDb synopsis: Two drag queens and a transsexual travel across the desert to perform their unique style of cabaret.
(Source: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0109045/?ref_=fn_al_tt_2)

My verdict:¬†This is one of my all-time favourite films ever! I loved watching Guy Pearce in Australian daytime TV when I was at school; first as¬†Mike Young in Neighbours (from¬†1986 to 1989) and then as¬†David Croft in Home and Away (1991 to 1992). He’s such a great actor and he is hilarious in Priscilla.

Hugo Weaving plays “Tick” who lives in Sydney and gets offered a job performing his drag act as ‘Mitzi Del Bra’ in a hotel for a friend in a remote town called Alice Springs. His two friends, transgender¬†Bernadette Bassinger (Terence Stamp) and hyperactive¬†Adam Whitely (Guy Pearce) come along for the journey aboard their bus, which¬†Adam names “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert”. The journey doesn’t go as smoothly as it should, with all kinds of disasters befalling them. Along the way, they meet¬†Bob, a middle-aged mechanic (hilariously played by the wonderful¬†Bill Hunter, who I also loved in Muriel’s Wedding and Strictly Ballroom), who tags along for the ride after a showdown with his wife¬†Cynthia.

I don’t want to give too much away, but if you haven’t seen this, it’s a must! There are plenty of fabulous outfits, ABBA songs, dance routines and even some ping pong balls.

Film Review: Walk Of Shame (2014)


Starring
: Elizabeth Banks, James Marsden, Gillian Jacobs, Sarah Wright, Ethan Suplee, Oliver Hudson

IMDb¬†synopsis: A reporter’s dream of becoming a news anchor is compromised after a one-night stand leaves her stranded in downtown L.A. without a phone, car, ID or money – and only 8 hours to make it to the most important job interview of her life.

My verdict: I have to say, I liked it. Reporter Meghan Miles thinks she’s up for promotion, only to find out she’s lost out to¬†Wendy Chang. As well as this blow, her boyfriend has upped and left her. Her friends, Rose and Denise, convince her that she needs a fun night out, and this is pretty much where the film begins. They end up in a bar, where dishy James Marsden is serving the drinks, through a clumsy happenstance (I love that word, I’ve just found out it means something that happens by chance, I’m so dim!), she ends up going home with James Marsden. She wakes up after an eventful night, and tries to get home. Various things get in the way of that, and she ends up doing the so-so shameful walk of shame, via a crack house, massage parlour and various other randomness. The amount of James Marsden was lacking for me, so a point docked there. Plus, she just leaves her car at the pound. Like, who does that? It’s a rainy weather duvet day kinda film, or if you’re off sick and just need to Netflix and chill. But alone, you’re sick and need your rest.

My rating: A Elizabeth Banks looks nice in that yellow dress 3 out of 5 stars

Film Review: The Decoy Bride (2011)


Starring
:  Kelly Macdonald, David Tennant, Alice Eve, Michael Urie, Sally Phillips, Maureen Beattie
IMDb¬†synopsis: When the world’s media descend on the remote Scottish island where a Hollywood actress is attempting to get married, a local girl is hired as a decoy bride to put the paparazzi off the scent.

My verdict:¬†I found this on Netflix as I was looking for David Tennant films to watch to fill the Jessica Jones hole left in my telly viewing. David Tennant plays¬†James Arber, a best-selling author¬†who is due to get married to Hollywood actress,¬†Lara Tyler (played by¬†Alice Eve), except their wedding is¬†ruined when a paparazzi photographer manages to sneak into the church they’re in and Lara calls the wedding off. As they want a paparazzi free wedding, they decide to run off to the island of Hegg in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland (which is a fictional island in real life). Unfortunately, the same paparazzi guy finds out and heads over to Hegg. To try to help them to¬†get married in secret, local girl Katie Nic Aodh (played by¬†Kelly Macdonald, who was 35 in real life in this but looks about 25!), is drafted in to be the decoy bride, to give the paparazzi their picture, believing they’ll leave, leaving Lara and James in peace to get married. All kinds of craziness take place, including David Tennant dressing up like one of the Bay City Rollers, a deaf couple dancing to bagpipes, a haunted toilet and the man from Ugly Betty being the character he played in Ugly Betty. Hurrah.

Rating: A bagpipe playing 5 out of 5 stars

Netflix Review: Jessica Jones (2015)

Starring:  Krysten Ritter, Rachael Taylor, Eka Darville, David Tennant, Carrie-Anne Moss, Wil Traval, Susie Abromeit, Mike Colter, Erin Moriarty
IMDb synopsis: A former super-hero decides to reboot her life by becoming a private investigator.

My verdict:¬†Now, I must be honest and say that I only really started to watch Jessica Jones because I fancy David Tennant. I would watch that man read the phonebook to me, hour upon hour, if that was possible. Michelle¬†and I usually watch Netflix series episodes during dinner (one episode a night), and this is what we intended with Jessica Jones. We settled down to watch episode one¬†on Tuesday night, with the belief that we’d only watch one episode. Wrong. We went to bed at 12:30am after binge watching the first six episodes. Then we had a conundrum on Wednesday night as there were seven episodes left to watch. Should we watch four on Wednesday and three on Thursday? Five and two? We did neither. We binge watched all seven and went to bed very late. Were the late nights worth it? Yes, totally! I felt truly bereft at work on Thursday as I had run out of episodes, which meant no more David Tennant, though I did get my DT fix by watching him hosting the Doctor Who special of Never Mind The Buzzcocks on YouTube…

I’ve never really been into Marvel; not the comics, not the films. So, I was going into this with no super-hero background knowledge. It didn’t matter, as even though it is a Marvel show, my lack of knowledge didn’t detract from the show.

* Krysten Ritter plays Jessica Jones, a former super-hero who is now a private detective, trailing cheating husbands and wives around New York City. All she’s trying to do is get rent money and move on with her life, but her past keeps coming back to haunt her.
* Rachael Taylor plays her best friend Trish Walker, a former child actor and now talk show radio host.
* Jessica has an apartment in the same block as drug addict Malcolm Ducasse, played by Eka Darville, who she takes care of a lot, but later in the series, the tables turn and he ends up looking after her.
* David Tennant is wonderfully brilliant as Kilgrave, someone Jessica is trying to avoid who is back from her past.
* Jeri Hogarth is a lawyer who supplies Jessica with her detecting jobs, played by¬†Carrie-Anne Moss who I must admit I haven’t seen since The Matrix (I know she’s done loads of films since!).
* Wil Traval plays¬†Will Simpson, a¬†NYPD sergeant who stumbles into Jessica’s life after being sent to kill her best friend Trish.
* Susie Abromeit plays¬†Pam who is Jeri’s assistant and also lover, even though Jeri is married. Tut tut.
* Mike Colter plays Luke Cage, who has some pretty amazing super-hero skills of his own.
* Hope Shlottman, played by Erin Moriarty, is someone Jessica has been tasked with locating after she goes missing.

I don’t really want to give too much away about the plot, so I won’t, but I have to say this: Jessica Jones is brilliant! It’s one show where all of the characters are interesting, and even though there are main characters, you care about all of them equally. I was genuinely sad when it ended and I really hope that there’s a second season ūüôā

Rating: 5 glorious stars out of 5

Film Review: They Came Together (2014)


Starring
: Paul Rudd, Amy Poehler, Bill Hader, Ellie Kemper, Cobie Smulders
IMDb synopsis: A small business owner is about to lose her shop to a major corporate development.
(Source: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2398249/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1)

My verdict:¬†Wow. I spent much of the film shouting¬†“no!” in various levels of pitch and I kind of felt like I wanted to watch this through my fingers.

We recently watched the¬†Michael Showalter/David Wain genius that is Wet Hot American Summer, and having loved it so as we had, we decided to watch¬†They Came Together next, which is also a¬†Showalter/Wain film. Paul Rudd plays Joel, a ‘corporate drone’ who works for a big sweet manufacturer, and Amy¬†Poehler plays Molly, who runs a small independent sweetshop. One night, Joel and Molly are having dinner with Kyle (Bill Hader) and Karen (Ellie Kemper) and the discussion of how Joel and Molly met comes up. The film is basically them telling Kyle and Karen the rollercoaster story that is their life. It’s juat hilarious. And hard to watch. And cringe-worthy. Because basically, this film is a spoof of pretty much any rom-com, chick flick, romantically¬†clich√©d film you may have seen. Nothing is sacred; the scene with Joel and his Bubby made me actually shout, “noooooooooooo!” at the screen. As¬†Lt. Joe Kenda says, ‘my, my, my’.

If you go to watch this, knowing it’s a spoof, you can’t go wrong. Reviews where people are complaining because it’s too silly, or they “don’t get it”, well, I don’t understand them because I loved it. But then, I loved¬†Wet Hot American Summer too, and it’s just as epic.

Rating: 5 out of 5

As I love to quote from Travis from Clueless,

Wet Hot American Summer

WHAS

I’d recently seen adverts for the¬†Wet Hot American Summer¬†series,¬†so I looked it up on Netflix. I hadn’t realised that there was a film before the series, so recently me and Michael had a bit of a WHAS Netflix marathon! (If you click on the image above, it’ll take you straight to the Netflix page with all 3¬†listed – how good to you, am I, eh?!)

First up, Wet Hot American Summer (2001) – the film
You need to watch the film first. It stars a whole host of big names, with quite a few of them crediting WHAS as their first feature film (Bradley Cooper, Amy Poehler and Elizabeth Banks). The rest of the cast includes Janeane Garofalo, David Hyde Pierce, Molly Shannon, Paul Rudd, Christopher Meloni, Michael Showalter, Michael Ian Black, Zak Orth and A.D. Miles. I tried to write a synopsis, but then I realised that Wikipedia had already created a great one, so here it is:

In 1981, Camp Firewood, a summer camp located near Waterville, Maine, is preparing for its last day of camp. Counselors have one last chance to have a romantic encounter with another person at Camp Firewood. The summer culminates in a talent show.

Beth (Janeane Garofalo), the camp director, struggles to keep her counselors in order – and her campers alive – while falling in love with Henry (David Hyde Pierce), an astrophysics associate professor at Colby College. Henry has to devise a plan to save the camp from a piece of NASA’s Skylab, which is falling to Earth.

Coop (Michael Showalter) has a crush on Katie (Marguerite Moreau), his fellow counselor, but has to pry her away from her rebellious, obnoxious, and obviously unfaithful boyfriend, Andy (Paul Rudd). Only Gene (Christopher Meloni), the shell-shocked Vietnam war veteran and camp chef, can help Coop win Katie‚ÄĒwith some help from a talking can of vegetables (voiced by H. Jon Benjamin).

All the while, Gary (A.D. Miles), Gene’s unfortunately chosen apprentice, and J.J. (Zak Orth) attempt to figure out why McKinley (Michael Ian Black) hasn’t been with a woman, the reason being that McKinley is in love with Ben (Bradley Cooper), whom he marries in a ceremony by the lake; Victor (Ken Marino) attempts to lose his virginity with the resident loose-girl Abby (Marisa Ryan); and Susie (Amy Poehler) and Ben attempt to produce and choreograph the greatest talent show Camp Firewood has ever seen.
It really is a funny film, and I highly recommend you watch it!
Watching time: 1h 37 minutes

Then, there’s the series Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp
This¬†eight-episode Netflix series is a prequel to the original film, and so really I would recommend watching the film first. The series is set on the first day of camp, and so (if you’ve watched the film first), a lot of things will start to make sense. Like, how did Gail end up with Ron? How did Katie get to together with Andy? Why is there a talking tin can in the film? All these answers, and more! As well as all of the original cast, there are a number of famous faces who pop up: Chris Pine, John Hamm, Kristen Wiig, Josh Charles, Lake Bell, Michael Cera, Jayma Mays and even¬†“Weird Al” Yankovic.
Watching time: There are 8 episodes at around 30 minutes each so let’s call it 4 hours

Then, there’s the making of Hurricane of Fun: The Making of Wet Hot
This is a behind the scenes view of the making of the 2001 film, when Michael Showalter (one of the writers) and David Wain (the other writer and director) try to make a film set on one sunny day in camp, when in fact the elements are against them and they had nothing but driving rain and muddy conditions. After watching the film and the series, it is a perfect way to round off your Netflix binge watch.

Watching time: 1h 4 minutes

Total watching time: 6h 41 minutes

All totally worth it ūüôā

August film releases

I love watching films though I usually don’t get to watch them until they arrive on Netflix! The below films are due out this month and I’m looking forward to seeing them.¬†All film release dates and film synopses are courtesy of IMDb.

Max
A dog that helped US Marines in Afghanistan returns to the U.S. and is adopted by his handler’s family after suffering a traumatic experience.¬†7th August

The Gift
A young married couple’s lives are thrown into a harrowing tailspin when an acquaintance from the husband’s past brings mysterious gifts and a horrifying secret to light after more than 20 years.¬†7th August

The Diary of a Teenage Girl
A teen artist living in 1970s San Francisco enters into an affair with her mother’s boyfriend.¬†7th August

Manglehorn
Left heartbroken by the woman he loved and lost many years ago, Manglehorn, an eccentric small-town locksmith, tries to start his life over again with the help of a new friend. 7th August

Trainwreck
Having thought that monogamy was never possible, a commitment-phobic career woman may have to face her fears when she meets a good guy. 14th August

Captain Webb
The Greatest Englishman tells the story of Captain Matthew Webb, the first-ever person to successfully swim the English Channel in 1875 equipped only with his moustache, doses of Brandy and a wire wool swimsuit. 14th August

Convenience
Two convenience store robbers mess up the crime and end up working there for the rest of the night. 14th August

Paper Towns
A young man and his friends embark upon the road trip of their lives to find the missing girl next door. 17th August

Vacation
Rusty Griswold takes his own family on a road trip to “Walley World” in order to spice things up with his wife and reconnect with his sons. 21st August

Bill
What really happened during Shakespeare’s ‘Lost Years’? Hopeless lute player Bill Shakespeare leaves his home to follow his dream.¬†21st August

We Are Your Friends
An aspiring DJ looks to make it in the electronic music scene. 27th August

Barely Lethal
A teenage special ops agent coveting a “normal” adolescence fakes her own death and enrolls in a suburban high school. She quickly learns that surviving the treacherous waters of high school is more challenging than international espionage. 28th August

45 Years
There is just one week until Kate Mercer’s 45th wedding anniversary and the planning for the party is going well. But then a letter arrives for her husband. The body of his first love has been discovered, frozen and preserved in the icy glaciers of the Swiss Alps. By the time the party is upon them, five days later, there may not be a marriage left to celebrate.¬†28th August

Film Review: Life After Beth (2014)

Starring: Aubrey Plaza, Dane DeHaan, John C. Reilly, Molly Shannon, Cheryl Hines, Paul Reiser, Matthew Gray Gubler, Anna Kendrick
IMDb¬†synopsis: A young man’s recently deceased girlfriend mysteriously returns from the dead, but he slowly realizes she is not the way he remembered her.
(Source: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2581244/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1)

My verdict:¬†I saw the trailer for¬†Life After Beth a long time ago and I couldn’t wait to watch it. Then I read other people’s reviews and most people seemed to pan it, which was disappointing. I noticed it was on Netflix and decided to give it a go. I have to say that I did¬†like it, but it was slow in parts and there was, as usual in films about zombies, no explanation for how the people came to be zombies. I think¬†Aubrey Plaza is great in anything she’s in, and I have always been a big fan of¬†John C. Reilly’s, so I would have watched it until the end no matter what. It’s a funny film and I’m glad that I watched it, but I wouldn’t rush to watch it again.

Rating: 3 out of 5