Saturday, 4 August 2012

"i'm still a believer in the batman"

I've had a very boring week thus far, so yesterday, for something to do, I took myself to go see the latest Batman film at the cinema. I even took a notepad and pen so I can write this review without forgetting valuable parts which is something I tend to do a lot... Potential SPOILER alert... Here goes nothing:

I was a wee nervous going to the cinema alone - thoughts of 'oh look at the loner' running through my mind with every step I took. But, with a lovely guy serving me at the counter - no judging eyes in sight - I ploughed through, bought my ticket, a small sweet popcorn and Pepsi Max combo and took a seat to the left hand side of the screen. 

I'd been careful to avoid a large number of reviews, synopsis' and a lot of the hype that was circling a variety of media outlets since way before the film premiered, so I was pretty much going into the cinema with no expectations. Of course I'd have to be a social recluse or never read/seen any form of news to not know that the film was one of the most anticipated of the year, and being put into a category like that surely means the film holds a lot of pressure to please.

Whether you regard this as an expectation or not, one thing I had thought about the film - or more so about the casting - was wondering Anne Hathaway was going to perform her role of Catwoman well. I felt she was a type-cast, albeit a very good one, at playing girly, romcom characters? But then again, what better way to break free of the mode with the support of the incredible cast Christopher Nolan had gathered.

Being cautious of not giving too many spoilers, or ruining it for the likes of you that haven't seen it yet, and are as slow on the uptake as myself, I'm going to attempt to give a brief outline of the plot... The film is set 8 years after the last film left of, with Gotham seemingly in a state of peace, however in the belief that Batman murdered Harvey Dent (seen in the previous film as a character who spirals into evil to become Twoface) yet we know this to be untrue. Remember, Batman took the fall so Gotham could have a 'more worthy' hero? Anywho, Batman and Bruce Wayne (both played by Christian Bale) for that matter, have gone awol. People no longer believe in 'the Batman'.
A new enemy arises, from a group we learn about in the first of Nolan's Batman films; Batman Begins, in the form of Bane (played by Tom Hardy). I don't want to give too much more of the plot/storyline away so I'll end it there... Now onto the characters.

Bale plays Batman/Bruce Wayne better than I've ever seen him before in this film - I don't know whether it's because there is less Batman, and more the struggle of Wayne? But this is my favourite of the films in regard to his performance. He's convincing in his turmoil, angst and pain, yet delivers in the fight scenes and it's refreshing to see a more vulnerable side of Batman with regard to fighting and Wayne with regard to relationships. A lot of depth has been added to their character in this film and I really enjoyed watching the story pan out and his personality/mentality change and develop.

Tom Hardy as I mentioned previously plays the villian of the film; Bane. Firstly, I can't imagine the amount of weight-lifting and pumping-of-iron he had to do to prepare for this role - his body is hench in this film, like I've never seen him before! Bane is described as being 'born and raised in hell on earth' and has brute strength like no other. Hardy portrays Bane's character brilliantly considering he has his nose and mouth covered with a mask, with just his eyes and his voice to show expression. Not that his character is the most expressive anyway, rarely swaying from the emotions of anger and menace.

Ann Hathaway was a surprise for me in this movie - I'd always considered her attractive and beautiful, like I said earlier, dead suited to romcom roles. But she oozed sex appeal and adopted the dark/tortured character of Selena Kyle very well indeed. She wasn't defined in the film as 'Catwoman' even though she quite clearly was - more spoken of as a 'cat-burglar' relating to her thieving tendencies. She was vulnerable yet could really kick some ass, loved it.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt *swoon* played what I went into the cinema thinking was only a minor role, but actually a very large and influential role indeed. He plays John Blake, a young police-officer-turned-detective, and all-round good guy. He was a large factor in why Batman came out from hiding, uttering the resonant words 'I'm still a believer in the Batman'.

The film is also jam-packed with more familiar famous faces;  Michael Caine as Alfred, Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox, Gary Oldman as Commissioner James Gordon, Marion Cotillard as Miranda Tate, and a brief appearance from the voice himself; Liam Neeson as Ra's al Ghul.

Now, I think I've waffled on enough. But I would like to round it off by saying that despite being one of the most anticipated films of the year, The Dark Knight Rises meets and even exceeds the expectations I'd adopted prior to viewing. I was thoroughly impressed with the cast, and being a lover of darker, moodier films in general, this was right up my street. I was completely gripped all the way through, holding in the contents of my bladder so I wouldn't miss a single second - that's when you know you're watching a good'un!

Monday, 30 July 2012

"an outlet to express"

Seeing as I've done an introduction of myself, how about I do an introduction to the blog? 
I think that's a good idea, don't you? :)

I spoke about going on to study Film Studies and Media Studies at Anglia Ruskin in September, and felt it fitting to immerse myself in the media and provide an outlet to express my opinions and discoveries. 'A box full of...' is just that. I kept the title broad so I can write about the number of different things I love, from music and films, to beauty related topics.
I have plans to put together film reviews, album/single reviews like that of the alt-J post I put up on Friday, alongside expressing my love for fashion and beauty.

I better make a point of saying now that I don't claim to have any extent of knowledge in beauty, fashion, or the media - I'm just merely here to express my views, and to be able to discuss a variety of topics with all you out there! 

Thanks for reading! I hope you'll continue to do so as my blog develops. :)

Friday, 27 July 2012

"you've got big kudos points"

If you can look at that picture above and know precisely what it represents, you've got big kudos points from me!
That picture (I'd like to say 'of course', but the fact is they are still pretty much under-the-radar) represents my newest music crush, alt-J and their album, An Awesome Wave.

Ever since I heard them first on Fearne Cotton's Radio 1 show, I've been eager to hear more and haven't once found myself skipping a track. Their sound is like nothing I've ever heard before, yet encompasses so many factors that I look for in artists these days. Each time you listen to one of their songs you discover something new, something your ears missed, but understandably so, because each track has so many layers and levels to produce the complete sound.

The lyrics are sung and written in a way that you have to really try to understand them. I can see how some people may not like this and prefer to be able to sing along and belt out every word, but I love how alongside the way the whole song is put together, each listen to the lyrics helps you piece together the story line or message. It's also a plus that the lead singer has a stunning voice. He's such a skilled vocalist that it's hard to believe he was reluctant at first to be the lead singer of the band!

It truly is to me an exciting, beautiful and wonderfully put together record. 

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

"I'm Bex. Hello!"

I thought I'd better give a little introduction - give you an insight on little ol' me - the author behind the blog.

I'm Bex. Hello! I'm 19 years young.
I'm going to take a second stab at University this September, studying Film Studies and Media Studies at Anglia Ruskin University. Last year I made a hasty, last minute decision to go to university, opting to study Criminology and Psychology at Sheffield Hallam. I guess it was all a bit daunting upping and moving over 3 miles away, and the idea of gaining independence and going to University was more attractive than the reality, thus resulting in me coming home after a measly 6 weeks.

So this time round I can't afford for it not to work, so I've taken every precaution to ensure it goes as smoothly as possible - I'm going to live at home and travel into Cambridge as it isn't too far. I've chosen a course much better suited to my personality and my childhood dreams of having something to do with TV or radio - what exactly that role may be I'm hoping to find out when I study.

In July I completed a 6 month apprenticeship in Professional Cookery, which was one of the funnest things I've ever done! I attended training in Newport Pagnell at the De Vere Academy of Hospitality and had a work placement in a pub in Ampthill, Bedfordshire. I met some amazing people along the way and whilst doing it I discovered that becoming a chef isn't what I want to do just yet, I've gained some valuable life skills and experience - my mum's safe in the knowledge that when I do eventually fly the nest, at least I'll be able to cook myself something substantial. ;)

Anyway, there's my back story, pretty boring, but as you can tell I'm very indecisive. Or maybe you could call it adventurous...? I like to dabble in many a thing - pretty much because I get bored easily and I'm always looking for a new challenge.  'A Box Full Of...' is my latest challenge. :)

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

"it's time to start a-fresh"

Without wanting to start things off on a downer, I'd like to briefly sum up why I've got back into blogging, and created myself a new blog. In what is a very trying time for my family and I, I'm going to be using my blog as an outlet for all the things that are left unsaid and undone, and I'm hoping to gain a few allies along the way.
I used to have a blog which I sadly disposed of through a lack of confidence in my writing, my appearance and a lack of will to carry it on. However, it's time to start a-fresh.