Surprising Movies
 These are the movies that sort of just creep up on me, they don’t get me excited to see them months before they’re released because I only hear about how good they are usually through word of mouth or maybe I just ran out of movies to watch that week.

•    Hurt Locker – this film has been racking up awards left and right and for good reason, the suspense in this  film is just amazing. If you think about it most of the exciting scenes are just EODs trying to disable IEDs a couple of times, (sometimes strapped to humans) but it kept me at the edge of my seat the each time. I’ve never had the pleasure of seeing any of the director’s previous work so this movie wasn’t on my radar. I went in this movie expecting to see a movie like the Kingdom but its not unlike any middle-east drama/action movie I’ve seen and it made me understand how war can be a drug. Rarely will you see films where you look forward to the silent and tense scenes rather than explosions and gun fights.

•    Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs – anytime theres a new animated 3d film thats not from Pixar part  of me always gets excited to see how other companies would keep up in terms of film quality and such but at the same time I know its just gonna fall short of my expectations. However I just had a lot of fun watching this film, its presented in such a simple way but also offers a lot of surprises. The characters are very cartoony looking but the animation still gives a lot to look at. And its brand of slapstick comedy is something the whole family can enjoy. You’re not gonna get deep character development in this movie but who cares there’s still a ton of fun to be had.


•    Couple’s Retreat – I have to admit that the critic in me knows that this is not that good of a movie, and  that goes for almost all of Vince Vaughn’s movies. But the location and the ensemble cast managed to hook me, I mean everytime Jason Bateman is in a movie I tend to give it a slightly better review, maybe I should just credit his performance and trash the rest of the film in the future.. hmm that actually sounds like a good idea. But still there are some redeemable traits to the movie, like the interaction between the guys and the beautiful settings, some characters are just downright irritating like Trudy. And it has a shallow but welcome message for faithfulness, also.. guitar hero!

•    An Education – where did Carey Mulligan come from shes like a new and improved version of Katie Holmes!  An education is certainly that, you’ll be ‘educated’ in many ways when you watch this film: in film-making, story-telling, script-writing, acting and especially in romance and heartbreak. This movie is worth watching just for Carey’s performance alone but it also offers a lot more such as its attention to detail for the period its in, Alfred Morina delivers the good laughs too. Another good thing about the film is that you’ll never know what emotion a particular scene will trigger for instance whenever there are scenes of romance some people would feel happy for Jenny however I usually just felt anger for David’s character and felt sorry for the girl. This film really delivers an education for the protagonist and more importantly the audience, which the film expects to be as intelligent as Jenny.

•    Taken – the main plot doesn’t make too much sense but Liam Neeson is a bad-ass. The other actors  weren’t particularly good (e.g. the daughter) but Liam Neeson is a bad-ass. The story is really predictable but Liam Neeson is a bad-ass. Liam Neeson is a bad-ass but Liam Neeson is a bad ass.




•    Precious – this is a hard film to watch, but when you’re in the theatre you’ll realize that you still have  to hear what it has to say. There were times when I felt uncomfortable because this film doesn’t pull back its punches, when it wants to deliver heart-break it will show you heart-break in a very realistic fashion. It also doesn’t portray the protagonist as someone who can do no wrong nor does it portray the antagonist as someone incapable of doing good. This movie doesn’t aim to entertain except maybe during those daydream sequences but it sets out to teach you about life.


•    Moon – another movie that I love especially because it makes the most out of its modest budget, the  FX don’t seem feel or cheap at all, but of course don’t expect a lot of explosions or even aliens. This is a very good kind of sci-fi, intelligent, thought-provoking and has a slow build up which most likely will bore the typical movie-goer but give it a chance and it will actually stimulate your brain cells. This film will toy with your expectations and Sam Rockwell’s performance will captivate you all throughout the film.


•    Adventureland – the trailer made it look like this film was gonna be another Superbad, a film which I really liked but didn’t think had to be remade so I was gladly surprised the Adventureland actually is more rooted to reality. Its not laugh out loud funny, its just cute and quirky at times, its beautiful and honest and the romance is so believable people even argue in an awkward/realistic way. Jesse Eisenberg is another Michael Cera, that awkward schtick they do never gets old and it adds a lot to his interaction with Kristen Stewart’s character. Amazing performances from everyone in this film, even Ryan Reynolds manages to pull off a calm character on screen.

•    G.I. Joe – I wanted/expected this movie to fail from the moment it was announced and especially after seeing Transformers 2 I thought it was gonna be another mess of a film. It turns out its not as bad as Transformers 2, now that may not be saying much but really this movie was just plain fun. It was really nice to see the characters from G.I. Joe brought to the big screen. And the fight scene between kid snake eyes and kid storm shadow was full of win. I really hated the visuals though like their sorry attempt to clone an x-men blackbird. But the film is surprisingly enjoyable, from the trailer I hated that chase scene with the accelerator suits but it turned out to be one of my favorite scenes from the film.

•    Funny People – another film that disguises itself as a comedy but instead tries to teach you about life  (I guess that’s a thing now).  Adam Sandler + Seth Rogen + Jonah Hill = hilarity right?! Well yes and no, yes the first half of the film is quite funny but its no longer that funny when the film starts to show its depth. And eventhough  the film is too long, and it feels that way as well, I still enjoyed it thanks to solid performances from the cast and the realization that Adam Sandler’s character had in the end about family life.


•    17 Again – the main surprise in this film for me is Zac Efron, I hate to admit it but the kid can act. I’m a hater when it comes to guys like that you know the type, people with talent and looks. He steals every scene in the film and its really more of a breakout performance for Zac. But the film as derivative as it is, actually offers another surprise, its message. It delivers the lesson of being responsible for the way your life turned out and not blame it on anyone else.


And the two films that I’ve yet to watch, coz its not showing yet in Singapore, but will most likely end up in this list.

•    Brothers

•    The Blind Side

Thanks for reading, stay tuned for my next post – the most disappointing films of 2009.

trying out a new site

Posted: January 1, 2010 in Uncategorized

So its a new year and I decided to bite the bullet and buy a domain for my site, check out my first post about the best movies I’ve watched in 2009 here —

My list for best movies of 2009

Posted: January 1, 2010 in movies

Welcome to my first article for my new site! And this being my first article for the new year, or even the new decade (if you consider 2010 as part of the new decade) I thought why not look back at what a great year it has been as far as my movie-going experience is concerned. I’m just thankful that I was able to go to the theaters at least once a week because 2009 was a great year for watching movies! And just to be clear these are the movies that I was able to watch this year, so this list doesn’t include a lot of movies that haven’t been released internationally yet and movies that I chose not to watch for personal reasons e.g. paranormal activity (because scary things, scare me). And I’m not gonna even try and rank these movies because that will just hurt my brain.

Best Movies

These are the Best of the Best, movies that I had high expectations for and were able to deliver or exceed those expectations.

  • Avatar – the biggest movie event of the year also has the biggest budget, but like what Roger Ebert said I’m glad someone in Hollywood still knows how to spend 350 million dollars. This movie can actually save cinemas because thats the only way to fully experience Avatar, in the biggest screen possible and in 3D. Its good that James Cameron never backed down and just didn’t stop until he realized his dream. Finally this generation has their Star Wars, not in the sense of an excellent movie series just yet but I’m just referring to an epic movie per se. I’m totally aware of the cheesy dialogue but thats fine with me the story was good (not great) anyway. I’ll just leave the epic dialogue to some other movie but at least Avatar uses technology well enogh to push the boundaries of story-telling. As for the soundtrack, meh.


  • Star Trek – if you plan to reboot a franchise, this is how you do it (also Dark Knight). You make it epic, you make it appeal to both fans and non-fans alike and you don’t mess with previous lore. This is just a really entertaining film, the visuals are great, thrilling action sequences, great cast and dialogue that occassionally panders to fans of the series. Everything except the villain was right for this film. It’s not that the acting was horrible or that the character was completely empty but I felt that the villain just wasnt right for the story, his purpose was too weak. Oh, and big monsters getting eaten by bigger monsters just before they get to the hero is getting really old. Also.. lens flares!


  • District 9 – definitely in my top 5 for this year this movie is a joy to watch. The lead is very likable as a character and an actor. The cgi is flawless and almost makes you forget the aliens weren’t real. The story is extremely relevant to our times and more importantly its message is not on the nose, its not being shoved in your face but rather you have to search for it and the realization is the reward.Oh and its funny when it needs to be as well.

  • Up – had me in tears during the first few minutes of this film. Any scene that had Carl and Ellie is just pure gold. There are so many things in this movie that keeps pulling the strings on my fat-clogged heart like “its the boring things that you remember.” Admittedly the rest of the film, the actual adventure part, didn’t live up to the first part of the film only because the first half was so perfect.

  • The Brother’s Bloom – ever since I saw brick I knew there was Rian Johnson is gonna be a great filmmaker and boy did he deliver in Brother’s Bloom. I like Brick a little bit more than this movie but this is still a fun ride plus the performances were great across the board. The dialogue is really witty and the twist and turns of the story are really entertaining.

  • Inglorious Basterds – the dialogue is definitely the main attraction for this film, Quentin Tarantino is such a master of building tension just through character interaction. The violence is over the top but still has a certain style to it. I like the fact that theres more dialogue in this film rather than action mainly because the script is so intelligent.




  • Watchmen – the fact that someone had the balls to create a film based on the graphic novel and remained extremely faithful to the source material just blows my mind. The visuals are amazing and I’m completely aware that the complicated plot may not appeal to everyone but that just makes the film even more special. The fact that it doesnt dumb it self down for the rest of the world and just remains focused on delivering the point across. Also Rorschach is such a bad-ass.

  • He’s Just Not that into you – this is just a standard chick flick, its not even close to the film Love, Actually but its the best out of all the standard chick flicks this year in my opinion. Thats because despite being formulaic it actually has clever dialogue from time to time. The cast is stellar and no one in particular sucked but of course if you have so many characters to follow you won’t have enough time to explore their stories.

  • 500 days of summer – this film is not a love story, its a story about love.. this is the best couples movie this year, heck I’d even recommend single people to see it. Yes it feels like an indie film in every way, but when is that a bad thing? Great soundtrack, quirky scenes, funny dialogue and characters that you just fall in love with.




  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – Probably the installment with the darkest theme yet, the cinematography in this film is just awe-inspiring. I know people always say its not as good as the book and I agree, the movie didn’t devote enough time to the half-blood prince making the reveal at the end fall flat and the final scene where raise their wands to honor Dumbledore was just too short. You can definitely feel the series mature in this film and they sort of take risks as well. All the teen stuff actually come out as cute and romantic rather than being corny to a person as old as me.

  • Monsters vs Aliens – its not quite kung-fu panda but it comes close. The film definitely delivers a few good laughs plus theres also the obvious albeit shallow ‘girl power’ message of the story.




  • Sherlock Holmes – why would a film trying to make a lot of money get a release date so close to Avatar, well I guess if they’re really confident about their product they just don’t care. If not for Avatar this movie might’ve been the holiday event for this year. And boy is it a great movie, Guy Richie’s style fits perfectly in this movie and doesn’t feel forced like in Rock ‘n Rolla. And of course the bromance between Robert Downy Jr. and Jude Law is entertaining. This film is most certainly a welcome take on Sherlock Holmes.



  • I love you, Man – my 2nd best comedy film for 2009, I just love the plot of this movie its a simple story but it has a lot of heart. It touches on a lot of topics such as music and growing up and underneath all the funny moments theres a sadness in the film thats also heartwarming. I watched this film because I’ve loved Jason Segel’s work so far and I knew that he was gonna be awesome but after watching the film Paul Rudd delivered an equally amazing if not more memorable performance.



  • The Hangover – this is my favorite pure comedy for 2009, with an outrageous and totally impossible plot this film just delivers the laughs. Another interesting things to note is that its a summer movie that has a relatively low budget. Performances were great most notably Ed Helms. This is the years movie that delivers the highest LPM (laughs per minute).

  • Ong Bak 2 – this is action porn just like the first movie, a lot of things don’t make sense, some people fight for no reason, the acting is over the top, fewer jaw-dropping stunts compared to the first one but still its a unique action film and I’m glad I saw it.



  • Zombieland – nut up or shut up, its cool and cheesy at the same time and its something you won’t forget; that pretty much sums up the movie as a whole. Its a nice take on the zombie genre, its entertaining, the dialogue is great and the lead is of course totally relatable. This is probably the first film where I found Emma Stone to be attractive oh and Woody Harrelson is such a bad-ass.



Thanks for reading, be sure to come back tomorrow to checkout my list for most surprising movies of 2009!

Oct 29, 2008 – After being delayed for more than a month one of the most critically acclaimed shows ever to grace Asia finally comes to Singapore. 

The show started off with a beatbox battle between two of the finalists for the 2nd National Beatbox Competition, and other acts from Asia.

Then just as the crowd was getting impatient, the lights were turned off, then it began.. an array of lights and stronger playing in the background got the crowd excited. After that, the fog machines were activated and a blue light welcomed Kanye to the stage. He performed the first song off of his current album, Good Morning.

He proceeded to bring the stadium down song after song, and when he got to ‘I Put On’ he extended it with what seems to be a freestyle treat for the Singaporean crowd.

Read the rest of this entry »

Dont forget to get out and vote

Posted: October 19, 2008 in Politics

Whats better than one Starcraft 2 games? How about, THREE Starcraft 2 games!

Fans were stunned when Blizzard made the announcement that we wont be getting the next Starcraft game in one package and instead will be released as three separate expansions, so thats one for each race. The 3 expansions, according to release, will be Wings of Liberty (Terran), Heart of the Swarm (Zerg), and Legacy of the Void (Protoss). Blizzard VP of Game Development Rob Pardo explained that separate expansions will allow for more in-depth and longer campaigns for each race rather than a truncated version that would occur with a single release. This news of course has gotten mixed reactions from the community, on one side, people like me who trust Blizz are happy that were actually getting enough content, I mean when Blizzard really feels like their game truely is on an epic scale they really do something about it. This move to me is the only thing Blizzard can do short of actually releasing an mmorpg for Starcraft (but there have been rumors that Universe of Starcraft is in development already).  And on one hand some fans feel that this along with the announcement of a 2.0 with paid subscription is just Blizzard’s way of squeezing every bit of revenue they can from gamers. Also fans who have specific races that they want to play are also upset by this news.

Blizz shows wizard class in Diablo 3

Check out more info and videos of the wizard class here.

World of Warcraft

  • WoW will have paid customizations options, however details weren’t announced
  • Warcraft IV may still come out.. in the next 5 to 10 years
  • WoW might put Pandarens in the game, however Blizzard is hesitant because it may ‘upset’ the Chinese market
  • You’re mounts will learn how to swim
  • Blizzcon goodie bags are now available on eBay

EBay on a spending spree

SAN JOSE, Calif., October 6, 2008 – eBay Inc. (NASDAQ:EBAY) today announced two acquisitions that significantly extend the company’s leadership position in online payments and classifieds. In payments, the company is acquiring the U.S.-based online payments business Bill Me Later® for approximately $820 million in cash and approximately $125 million in outstanding options. In classifieds, the company has acquired Denmark’s leading online classifieds site and vehicles site for approximately $390 million in cash.

The company also announced plans to reduce its global workforce by approximately 10 percent, affecting about 1,000 employees in addition to several hundred temporary workers and the reduction of open positions. The global reduction is intended to simplify and streamline eBay’s organization, improve the company’s cost structure and strengthen the overall competitiveness of the company’s existing businesses. The reduction is expected to result in pretax restructuring charges of approximately $70 million to $80 million, with the charges predominantly recorded in the fourth quarter of 2008. Read more..

We’re still buying Alltel – Verizon

— Verizon Wireless still faces significant hurdles in its $28.1 billion bid to acquire Alltel Corp. in a financial climate that has steadily worsened since the companies reached the agreement in June. Read more..

Chelsea owner wants a yacht good enough for Command & Conquer

When you have a personal fortune of £11.7billion, you can perhaps be forgiven for feeling the need for protection.

In Roman Abramovich’s case, the solution is to order an armour-plated mega-yacht with missile detection system to offer early warning of attack by pirates or terrorists.

At 550ft long, the vessel, costing more than £200million, will be the largest private yacht ever constructed. Read more..

Happy 17th birthday Linux!

Singapore: Ministry of Sound shuts down

SINGAPORE: The curtains have come down on Singapore’s Ministry of Sound (MOS). Lifebrandz Limited, which brought the popular club to Singapore in 2005, announced in a statement that it was ceasing MOS’ operations from October 6. Read more..

Singapore: Singtel hikes up prices

SINGAPORE: SingTel is increasing its local fixed line subscription by S$10 a year from January 1, 2009.

Local fixed line call charges will go up from 0.7 to 0.8 Singapore cents per 30—second block during peak hours or per 60—second block during off—peak hours. Read more..

Philippines: Pinoys irrated over controversial BBC skit

MANILA, Philippines – Filipinos in London are set to launch “concerted efforts” against British government-owned British Broadcasting Corp (BBC) for its reportedly “racist and humiliating” portrayal of a Filipina domestic worker, a lawmaker said on Monday.

Batangas Rep. Hermilando Mandanas, head of the subcommittee on the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), said during the plenary debates on the proposed 2009 budget that Philippine Embassy representatives in the United Kingdom were already coordinating with the Filipino community there regarding their protest actions. Read more..