“Rurouni Kenshin” the live action movie was amazing. This was one of the most beautiful adaptations that I’ve seen in a very long time. Dare I say it’s way up there with Watchmen.
Normally when I hear that a movie will be made after a certain anime, I get this bad feeling that they will ruin everything for the fans. A very good example is the Dragon Ball movie that appeared a couple of years ago.
But then again, this is not an American adaptation of an Anime.
I was really hipped about this movie because Rurouni Kenshin holds a very dear place in my heart and childhood memories. Not only was Rurouni Kenshin one of the first anime movies that I’ve seen but the anime series (Samurai X) was on TV every weekend morning. It was something that we could all watch on those lazy weekend mornings. Heck I still have Bonnie’s Pink song “It’s gonna rain” on my MP3 player.
So, watching the movie took a lot of guts from me since I didn’t want to ruing those feelings. Well, I must say those Japanese know their stuff because the movie was awesome on so many levels.
Basically, the action of the movie is exactly what happens in Samurai X first season. They managed to cram in the action of one entire season in a 2 hour long movie and it was amazing to watch from start to end.
Another thing that I liked about this movie was the casting. They actors were brilliant and it’s like they were meant to be apart of this movie. Their manners, the way they spoke, everything was so similar to the anime characters.
When I actually looked them up on Google I was really amazed how much different they look in real life compared to their characters. I don’t think that it was all down to make up and a good wardrobe, I do think they were able to bring to life the characters with their acting talent.
Truthfully as a fan of the series I was really pleased with this movie. I was so pleased with it that I actually gave it a 9 on IMDb.
Believe it or not I actually convinced Johnny to watch a Japanese movie with me. All that I had to say was “It has lots of blood” and he was settling in to watch.
So, this is the very short story on how we watched “Battle Royale”.
This isn’t a movie for kids, but then again the amount the blood the movie has is childish compared with other movies. I mean, its not the blood that shocks is the main idea/story of the movie: kids killing kids.
I was planning on reading the book first (“Battle Royale” by Koushun Takami) but it was much easier to find the movie than the book.
The story is basically simple, Japan is going through a bad phase. Adults are losing the respect they once had and kids are basically running wild. So, a new law is introduced. This is called the “Battle Royale” law where each year a class of students is chosen and they are taken to an island/remote place where they have to fight and kill each other in maximum 3 days. There can be only one winner or else everyone is killed.
At first, the kids think this is a big joke but soon they realize it’s not. Some of them kill themselves, some start killing just to stay alive, others just kill because they want to blow some steam.
The main focus of the story is on Shuya and Noriko. Shuya tries to protect Noriko for his dead friend Nobu who was in love with her. Then Kawada comes in the picture, since he’s been in the “game” before and he knows exactly how things work. And Kawada actually helps Shuya and Noriko to survive the game.
It’s basically the older version of the Hunger Games. It might not be as complex as the Hunger Games but its worth watching.
I am thinking of looking up and the second part of the movie, but a quick peak at the reviews and I have mixed feelings about it.
That’s a very long name even for my taste, but that’s the name of the book that I recently finished.
First lesson of the year: Don’t pick a book by its cover. It might be pretty, the “resume” might sound interesting but the content might be rubbish.
“The White Woman on the Green Bicycle” by Monique Roffey
Johnny bought this book for me at the end of 2012. You could say it was a Christmas gift, but I know he was being nice and just spoiled me with a new addition to my ever growing book collection.
Actually I wanted a new book but I really didn’t know what I wanted. The books that were on display at that time weren’t that great. Seriously, I thought people got over the Twilight saga but I guess I’m wrong. Almost 80% of the shelves were with vampires, werewolves, supernatural and other things related.
It was the picture on the book that draw me. It was so different from all the others. I also read the back of the book and said why not.
Well, it was a nice reading but just about it. The book has two parts.
The first part presents the lives of Sabine and George, an old British couple in Trinidad trying to live their remaining days in “peace and harmony“, if not in love. But their past, their ego, the fact that they are white, the current social situation in Trinidad, almost everything keeps them from being happy. So, George tries one more thing to prove his love for Sabine but ends up dying in their pool.
This triggers Sabine to do something very stupid (for a 75 year old woman) and then the story goes back to the period when Sabine and George barely moved to Trinidad.
And the second part starts, with a young Sabine and George just moving to Trinidad. They are very much in love and plan on only staying 3 years in Trinidad and after that to move back to U.K.
But George falls in love with the island and basically refuses to see anything wrong with the social situation in Trinidad (black people being denied the same rights as whites, increasing tensions on the island, the black power increasing and so on), while Sabine sees all of the above (and even more) and starts fearing for their lives.
Basically its a story on how one person (Sabine) gives up everything for another (George), in the process becomes a very bitter (old) person. I don’t know how accurate is the information about the political situation of that time, but its a weird story. Both characters are exaggerated: George is completely selfish and everything that doesn’t fit in his scheme isn’t important therefor not real and Sabine is basically an idiot, a whining idiot.
And this was supposed to be a love story. I really can digest that. First book of the year was a minor let down.
What better way to start the year than with a vacation. When everyone went back to work we actually went on a vacation.
Our mini vacation consisted of 4 days and 3 nights at Sinaia. I must say it turned out to be one of the best vacations ever. We went by train, it took us 2 hours to get there, and surprisingly the train got on time, no delay what so ever.
The weather there was beautiful: sunny, lots of snow and very, very cold.
We planned on not doing much except eat, drink and sleep. And even so, on the first day we went by foot up to the cable car and from there up to 1400m. There we took photos with Lord, a beautiful Saint Bernard that we took photos with last year at Busteni.
The owner was kind enough to let us take a few more personal pictures with the dog. Well, it wasn’t such a big request since we paid 20 Ron just for one photo.
Well, at 1400 m above sea level, if you don’t have a sledge, skies or a snowboard, there’s not much you can do. We actually stopped and ate lunch but when the bill came we had the shock of our lives. Eating at high altitude is very expensive.
The next day it was cloudy and we decided to visit Pelisor Castle.
We saw Peles Castle a few years ago, we really liked it even if the tour was 10 minutes long and they basically rushed us out so they can make time for the next tour. Well, at Pelisor it was the exact opposite.
Me and Johnny were the only ones visiting Pelisor at that time since everyone was heading for Peles. Basically, they gave us the go ahead to visit the castle at our own pace. They even begged us to take pictures, but we declined. It wasn’t that expensive to take pictures but we just wanted to enjoy the castle not having to worry if we took photos of this or that.
What I really loved at Pelisor were the painting of the french painter Marguerite (Gamy) Montaut. The paintings were in the children’s bedroom and they just caught my eyes. I’m actually thinking of reproducing a few of her paintings in stitching.
The interior of Pelisor was beautiful. Some of the rooms were amazing just by concept, leaving out all the decorative things.
On the third day we decided to brace ourselves and hit the high slopes at 2000m. We took again the cable car and basically we didn’t see anything besides fog. Yup, 2000m above the sea level and all around us just fog.
It was disappointing since we were so high and we wanted to see the views and all around us was just white fog. When we found a place to eat we were even more shocked of the prices they had. Seriously, eating on top of the mountain its a very expensive hobby.
I’m not saying that we didn’t spent money in our 4 days at the mountain side (we spent a lot of money in 4 days), but seriously 25 RON for a bowl of soup. I’m sorry but that’s just way over the limit of common sense.
In the end all we ate was a bowl of baked potatoes with goat milk. IMO that was one of the best meals I ever had in a very long time. It was healthy and yummy at the same time.
Also, we had good company while we were enjoying our meager lunch. A tabby cat, a very fat one if I might add. We actually had a discussion, where ever people are animals will always be close by. In this case lots of big dogs and a very fat cat that was enjoying the heat and hospitality of the cabin.
I also made a list (of photos) with the best foods I ate while I was on vacation. Don’t be surprised if you see lots of ice cream photos. I actually lots more food, like deer jerky, cow belly soup, pizza and so on, but 75% of the time I was very tipsy and photos were not on my mind.
“Bulzul Boierului” (the fourth picture) was one of the few things that I was not able to finish. It was so good but very fat.
And to end the mini vacation, in our last day we had a few more hours to kill before taking the train back to Bucharest. So we actually went to this Trains exposition. It was awesome on so many levels. First of all, we were in minority there. Actually all adults were in minority there. And it was easy to see why, there were a lot of mini trains, a place to do puzzles, draw, play with toy trains, an area for tea and coffee and they even had some cool souvenirs. And all of this was actually within the train station at Sinaia.