It has begun

The real Winter is here.

It started snowing last night but I wasn’t expecting to find the tress white since it also rained yesterday. Still it is a nice surprise and its a good way to start the week in my opinion.

My mini vacation is over and I start work today.

I’m also expecting an increase in snow related posts on my dash on Facebook and Tumblr. It should be interesting..

 

ParaNorman

Its been a long time since I last seen an animated movie. Around 2 weeks I believe.

I got used staying up late and not being able to sleep I decided to watch something easy to “digest” before going to bed. I had plenty of options but I decided to watch “ParaNorman”.

It has 7.2 on IMDd. That’s a really good score if you consider how many movies there are out there.

The movie resolves around Norman, a little kid that can see ghosts. Everyone thinks he’s out of his mind, or that he’s trying to get attention since his grandma passed away.

But the truth is he actually sees ghosts exactly like his “crazy” uncle. Long story short:

Norman’s town, Blithe Hollow, looks down upon him as well, but when a witch’s curse is set to bring the dead back to life in that very town, it’s up to him (and only him) to save it. As his fellow townspeople slowly realize the strange and paranormal exist, he’s aided by his new friend, Neil (Tucker Albrizzi), a bully named Alvin (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), his sister Courtney (Anna Kendrick), and Neil’s brother Mitch (Casey Afleck).

So Norman and co try to break the witch curse. They end up being chased around town by the 7 victims of the witch curse only to realize that the zombies are actually trying to send a message to Norman. The zombies, when they were alive, actually convicted of sorcery a little girl that could see ghosts just like Norman. She was killed and was buried in an unmarked grave.

The little girl, before being killed cursed them, each year on the day she was killed they would come back as the living dead.

Norman eventually convinces the little dead girl that there is no winning in taking revenge on people that fear what they do not understand. And so, the little girl removes the curse and she is able to rest in peace, Norman makes a new friend, the people of the town and his family start realizing that he actually has a gift and they stop looking down on him.

The movie is actually done in the same way as Shaun the Sheep and Coraline. They actually made clay puppets and photographed each scene in order to make it. I saw the movie in 2D, but the reviews of the movie in 3D are really good.

I doubt I will have the chance to see the movie in 3D but one never knows. This isn’t actually a movie for kids, heck the witch is a little girl that was murdered by 7 grown ups, Neil’s brother Mitch has a boyfriend and the zombies are actually more harmless than the living.

What else can I say, it was a easy to “digest” movie, perfect for watching before going to bed.

The Woman in Black

I have done the unthinkable, I watched a horror movie on my own.

I wanted to watch a post Harry Potter movie with one of the trio. I watched a lot of movies with Emma Watson, but almost none with Rupert Grint or Daniel Radcliffe.

So I decided to watch “The Woman in Black“. This movie was a lot more accessible than any of Rupert Grint movies, since British movies are really hard to find in Romania, especially if they aren’t that well known.

As I said, “The Woman in Black” is a horror movie. The movie doesn’t have a lot of blood, but it has a lot of scenes were you just jump out of your seat. Some of them are easy to anticipate but even so you get a jolt whenever they come.

The movie is based on the book “The Woman in Black” by Susan Hill.

It’s a sad story of a young man, Arthur Kipps, who lost his wife when she was giving birth to their son. He tries to make a living for himself and his son and he is put in a difficult situation where he has to go to the country side and take care of some legal papers otherwise he will get fired by his employer.

He ends up in a small depressing village (very much British like, with lots of fog and mud everywhere) where everyone just wants him to go back to the city. The locals try to hide the town’s tragic history from Kipps, but he soon learns that the house of his client is haunted by a woman in black. Whenever someone sees the woman in black a child dies.

Most of the children of the locals have died in tragic circumstances and no one knows why the woman is killing them.

Kipps, while looking through all the papers in the haunted mansion finds that the woman is actually seeking vengeance. She had a boy that she had to give up for adoption because she couldn’t take care of him, and the family that adopted him (her sister and her husband) do not let her see her son and nor do they let their son read all the birthday cards he receives from his true mother.

There was an accident and the boy is killed and his body was never recovered.

The woman in black commits suicide and her soul starts seeking vengeance since she was never able to be with her son. And from there all the killings in the village.

Of course being a horror movie there is no happy ending. Kipps tries to put the woman at peace by recovering the body of her little boy from the mud where he actually died. But, she cannot find peace and she eventually kills Kipps and his little boy.

The ending scene presents the Kipps family being reunited in death. It actually is a good ending to the Kipps family, sad but good.

I actually liked the movie. Its an old school horror movie and hopefully the book will be such as good since I do plan on reading it in the near future. As for Daniel Radcliffe, well they were right about his acting, its actually good.

Its actually a lot better than Emma Watson’s acting.

Now all that is needed is a Rupert Grint movie and I can consider myself satisfied.

A visit to the museum

Today was one of my free days. I could say it was my weekend since my working week is so much different from the normal working class.

I slept in, was lazy most of the day until Johnny suggested going for a walk in the park. Since we’ve been to most parks in Bucharest we decided to go to Carol Park.

It’s a nice park but very small compared with I.O.R. or Herastrau. Yet it has a lot of monuments that others parks do not have. One of them is the “National Technical Museum Dimitrie Leonida“. At first we thought there would be only engines and other technical stuff that we wouldn’t understand but we actually had fun in there. There are a lot of nice things to see from old cars to electrical devices.

One of the most awesome things there was the Oldsmobile.

Seriously I thought it would be a lot different than what it actually look like. We did saw other cars like a Cadillac or mini electrical cars. But the Oldsmobile was the funniest of them all.

Speaking of the mini electrical cars we actually studied them a little trying to figure out the maximum height one should have in order to fit inside the cars.

Just to get a better sense of the actual size of the cars here a picture with both mini electrical and me.

There were other cool things like miniatures models of trams and trains, sketches of how things work, paintings and even the first aerodynamic car which was built by a Romanian. Go figure…

It was a nice walk that got me refreshed and feeling happy. And I even left with a souvenir: a leather bookmark. Yup, I wanted a bookmark for a while now, I was even considering of stitching one for myself (but its been well over a year since that thought came into my mind) so a bookmark made sense. It’s something practical that I will use since I started reading more books (audio books and normal books).

This visit actually gave me an idea of what I should put on my 2013 list. Yup, my Resolutions list is coming.

Brave

Guess what movie we saw.. not like the title wouldn’t be sufficient.

Yup, we saw Brave.

I don’t even know where to start. Well, it was AWESOME! From my point of view this movie belongs in the Top 10 movies I’ve seen this year.

It was brilliant, beautiful, captivating and just funny.

I cannot say how much I loved the bears, the queen and the triplets.

Don’t expect me to write a review, if you want to know got watch the movie. Trust me you will love it.

But what I do want to say is this, they actually made plushies with the triplets as bears and I them, if not just one will do. I’m such a kid when it comes to plushies from anime or cartoons.

And here comes Winter

Time is flying faster and faster. I still can’t believe that November is almost gone, that Winter holidays are approaching, that the year will end in a month and 3 days.

It feels like I did nothing all year long and I just woke up today from a long sleep.

I now feel useless for no apparent reason.

I just found out that I will be working for the holidays. In a way I am happy because I’ll have a pretty good excuse to avoid all family. In a way I am sad cause I won’t be able to celebrate with friends.

Still, the weather is still fine. It’s sunny and pretty warm for this time of the year. No snow in sight.

In a way that’s better. If I can’t feel the holidays then I won’t be sad in any way.

Good morning

Good morning!

It is a good morning, I finished a good book while enjoying a good coffee. I am on the afternoon shift so I have plenty of time in the morning to relax. I missed these days. I am enjoying the peace and quiet of an empty house.

Well, I can’t say that it is peace and quiet since I can still hear the workers outside the windows. But it’s not as noisy as before.

I just finished reading “The Mysterious Affair at Styles” by Agatha Christie. This is actually the first novel in which Hercule Poirot appears. It was a fun reading since you get to know about the first impressions Captain Hastings had on the little Belgian man.

Believe or not I actually read the small autobiography before reading the novel and I was shocked to find out that my favorite detective will die eventually. Yes, Agatha Christie killed Hercule Poirot in the last novel. I am disappointed.

I always liked to think that Hercule Poirot had a nice retirement and took some small cases from time to time to keep himself busy. But apparently he dies. I actually looked up the name of the novel just to be sure that it will be the last novel from the Hercule Poirot collection that I will read.

It will be a sad thing when I will reach that novel.

Still, I still have a long way to go before reading all the novels with Hercule Poirot. I could actually read them all before the end of the year, but what fun would that be.

Oh well, back to picking audiobooks for my mp3 player. The poor little mp3 player, he gets new files every two weeks or so and yet he never lets me down..

Moulin Rouge – Pierre La Mure

I have this bad habit of borrowing books from different people and not read them. I just forget about them and they start gathering dust on the shelves.

So, on my last trip to the beach I decided on taking “Moulin Rouge” by Pierre La Mure with me. Remembering the movie I had the impression that it will be a romance book. Boy was I mistaken.

This is a book for my soul. A slow paced book about painters (famous ones I might add), the difficulties they encountered during those times and the old days of Paris when the Eiffel Tower was being built.

The mention of the Moulin Rouge cabaret only comes about half way through the book. Till then the book presents the life of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. Truth is I never heard of this Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, and yet it seems he was a famous French painter, who was a good friend with Cezanne, Van Gogh and Gauguin.

Henri was not the normal painter that struggled in life, he belong to an aristocratic family meaning money was never a problem for him. But, life is a bitch and we all know it, but Henri de Toulouse Lautrec knew it better than anyone.

His parents were primary cousins. So his genes were really messed up, and at an early age he got sick, broke his legs and he only got better when he was 17-18 years old. But by that time, his legs stopped growing, he had problems walking, his eyesight was bad and he was basically deformed. His upper body was that of a grown up and his lower body was that of a child.

I believe the cover of my book was reproduced after this particular picture.

The action in the book mostly revolves around Henri stay in the Montmartre neighbourhood in Paris, “the area of Paris famous for its bohemian lifestyle and the haunt of artists, writers, and philosophers“. Henri life, even if he is from a good family, is really hard. He was mocked for being short in stature and for his physical appearance which led him to drown his sorrows in alcohol.

Its actually really sad considering the book depicts him as being a nice person (can’t tell for sure how a person is if you never known them personally). He is shown protecting the honor of Van Gogh (who was well known for being mentally unstable ), being generous with friends and even prostitutes.

I normally don’t enjoy history with all the dates and events, because I believe too much info is bad for the mind. But I do enjoy history when it comes to people. Knowing what they did, how they managed in life, what where their pleasures in life and all the little things. This type of history fascinates me to no end.

Its amazing how many things go together in life, how many people knew each other even if their field off work was completely different, how certain events were related between them. History that is taught in school is boring. History learned by accident is much more fun.

Seriously, now only did I found more about famous painters, but I now know that the Eiffel Tower was built in the same year as the Moulin Rouge.

I started the book at the beginning of summer and I only finished it now at the end of autumn. It’s not a hard book to read, it’s very captivating but it starts on a happy note which coincides with summer (all nice and sunny, warm and full of fun) and it has a bitter end (gloomy and sad) just like autumn.

I did a bit of research on the Internet and it seems that Lautrec died from syphilis and alcoholism, but the book is a lot kinder and it attributes his death just to alcoholism.

This was one of those books that will stick in my memory for a long time.

Adulthood…

Adulthood, if you’re not tired you’re not doing it right.

I don’t know who said this but he was spot on. I’m dead tired so I guess I’m doing pretty good at being an adult.

At least I’m doing good at one thing.

I work. I sleep. I go to university. I help at cleaning the house after the major renovations we had in the last month. What can I say it’s a pleasure to stay awake for more than 24 hours in a row and just work or clean.

But at least, when morning comes I get up to the nicest view ever. Sorry Johnny, but Marlanu’ takes the cake.

Hopefully, they’ll put me on the afternoon shift so I can actually feel that I’m living.