Monday, 30 June 2014

Reasons Why Shailene and J-Law Aren't the Same Person

Greetings once again readers! I seriously seem to have been on a blogging roll lately, to say I'm proud of myself would be a massive understatement. However, I am not here today to talk about me, oh no, it's time to get serious. It seems that everyone fluttering around the world wide web has recently been comparing actresses Shailene Woodley and Jennifer Lawrence to one another. But why? Well, that is what I am here to flesh out in detail. First off, let's take a closer look at these two Hollywood starlets . . .

Meet Jennifer

I think we're all pretty familiar with the awesomeness of J-Law. If you haven't heard of her, I actually don't know where you've been for the past few years. Seriously, what movies do you even watch? Despite her widespread popularity, I've listed some fun facts below:

- She's 23 and was born on August 15th 1990 (Leos represent!)
- She's received a Best Actress Academy Award
- She's never taken an acting class in her life
- She was voted most talkative in the 7th grade
- She's originally from Louisville, Kentucky

And what movies is she best known for? Once again, I've listed them.

- Winter's Bone (2010)
- X-Men: First Class/X-Men: Days of Future Past (2011/2014)
- The Hunger Games Series (2012-2015)
- Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
- American Hustle (2013)

Meet Shailene

Recently, it seems that Shailene's been gracing our movie screens quite a bit. This time last year, I had literally never laid eyes on her name, yet now, it seems I can't escape it (in a good way of course). I guess I could forgive you if you don't know her by name just yet, but if you haven't ever seen her, I seriously worry about your disconnection from popular culture. To help you guys out, low and behold some fun facts:

- She's 22 and was born on the 15th of November 1991
- She's starred alongside George Clooney 
- She's originally from Simi Valley, California
- She began her career through commercial modelling
- She had scoliosis at age 15 and wore a back brace for 2 years

Time for another film and TV round-up . . .

- The Secret Life of an American Teenager (2008-2013)
- The Descendants (2011)
- The Spectacular Now (2013)
- Divergent (2014)
- The Fault in Our Stars (2014)

Congratulations, you're now officially up to speed with the rest of the world (you know what they say, slow and steady wins the race - however what race this is, I have no idea)! So now we've got the basics over and done with, we can officially get down to business.


Obviously the comparisons between these two actresses aren't coming out of nowhere, because even I can admit that there are quite a few parallels. What are these exactly? Well for one, they both happen to be female which I guess is an important factor, as well as the fact that they're both in their early 20's. Is that enough to spur these constant comparisons? Not so much. Admittedly, there are a bunch of other factors as well, which I've decided to list below so you can make an informed decision.

1. They Both Happen to Star in Ridiculously Popular Movie adaptions of Young Adult, Dystopian Novels

Do I even need to expand on this? It's no secret that J-Law plays the strong female heroine of 'The Hunger Games' Katniss Everdeen, while Shailene plays vanity rejecting protagonist Beatrice Prior in 'Divergent'. 

2. They Both Tend to Speak Without a Filter

This I find is quite an admirable quality, one that is often hard to find in Hollywood. So of course, this rarity automatically makes people associate the two actresses with one another. 

3. They're Both Awesome Actresses Who Have Worked with Experienced Awesome Actors

Having seen quite a few of their movies, there's no doubting that these starlets certainly back up all the hype that surrounds them with some substantial on-screen talent. The fact that J-Law got to work with Robert De Niro in 'Silver Linings Playbook' and Shailene got to work alongside George Clooney in 'The Descendants' also happens to be pretty cool. 

And that, I kid you not, is the extent of their similarities. 


Considering the similarities pretty much mainly consist of their gender, their age and their roles as leading ladies on the big screen, it's time to put this myth to rest. I don't know about them, but I always get super annoyed when everyone compares me to other people, so I can't imagine how these two feel when they're trying to forge their own paths in the messy land of Hollywood. However of course, as well as the minor similarities, there are a bunch of differences that people seem to be conveniently overlooking, which of course I've decided to list as well.

1. They Have Completely Different Diets (and Beliefs)

This may seem trivial to you at first, but when you find out more, you'll definitely be on the same page. I mean, you're probably thinking 'how can what a person eats shape who they are?', yet you could not be more wrong.

Jennifer has expressed many a time her love for all that is eating (because let's face it, who doesn't?).

But what exactly does she chow down on?

Answer, the awesomest kinds of food in the world. However, hippy-esque Shailene would most definitely not be on board with this diet. I mean, processed junk foods, I think she'd absolutely die. What does she opt for instead? Clay! No, I'm not making this up. Miss Woodley has expressed many a time the health benefits of consuming mouldy layers of soil, eating it as a part of her detoxification diet. According to her, the clay 'binds to other materials in your body and helps your body excrete those materials that aren't necessarily the best for you'. Am I interested in this? Kind of. Would I be game to try it? Hell no. Not only does she enjoy munching on some clay, but she also frequently goes foraging for stinging nettles and gathering fresh water from mountain streams which she carries around in her very own personal Mason jar (because of course, she's against the use of plastic bottles). I guess you have to admire her strength of character. I mean, she even whipped out the root of a horseradish on Jimmy Fallon!

This isn't just about slightly differing diets, oh no, this also has to do with clashing ideologies. The sassily laid-back vs. the hippie environmentalist. One put in an order for pizza at the 2013 Oscars, while the other spends their free time making their own tooth paste. They're like chalk and cheese (because let's face it, chalk will probably be making it's way onto Shailene's menu soon enough). 

2. They Have Different Levels of Experience

There's no doubting that both these actresses have been in their fair share of films throughout their career, and in that respect, I'd say their level of experience is proportional, but in terms of being in the spotlight? It's not comparable in the slightest. Jennifer has been the recipient of international idolisation for a while now, not to mention she's one of the most quotable people ever (the tumblr appreciation is ridiculous!). Don't believe me? Feats your eyes upon the gif below.

She knows how to handle all the attention, and has proved that her unique personality is unwavering in the face of fame and the pressures of show businesses. Not to mention, she just so happens to have won an Oscar. But Shailene? She's only a newbie when it comes to the Hollywood hall of fame. She got a couple of big gigs, and has now captured everyone's attention. Sure, she's true to herself now, but will that continue? We just don't know yet. I mean, I have no doubt that she'll stand firm in her beliefs, but there's no way to be entirely sure just yet while she's only starting out. I expect that she has a long career ahead of her, but as of now, she's only been in the spotlight for a few months. However, so far, she's proven her awesomeness. 

3. They Don't Share the Same DNA

When it comes down to it, they are different people with different DNA, and no one can tell them or anyone else otherwise. They lead separate lives and have different interests, so how could they possibly be described as identical? It's just ridiculous, and anger inducing (if you're weirdly touchy like I am). I personally think we should just appreciate the different things that make them individually awesome and quit these stupid comparisons. Even Shailene agrees!

I've now reached the end of my little, slightly ranty post. This has just been bothering me a lot lately, and what better way to vent than on the internet? I really like both Jennifer and Shailene individually, so the fact that they're constantly being compared and described as the same person is just stupid and annoying. So just be cool and accept that they're totally different, okay? Okay. Til' next time . . .

Annabel xx

Sunday, 29 June 2014

'22 Jump Street' Review

Hello blogosphere! Another day, another review. Today, I'm going to be relaying to you my opinion of the new '21 Jump Street' sequel, radically named '22 Jump Street'. Considering the first one blew up cinemas way back in 2012, people have been pretty pumped to see what this next one has to offer. Did it live up to expectation? Did it fall short of the first movie? You'll just have to continue reading.

Did I end up enjoying it? Yes, I actually did. I have to admit, I was a bit dubious at first, considering the majority of sequels are a major suckfest, however this didn't seem to be the case. Was it exactly the same as the first movie? Pretty much, although that didn't really seem to bother me or the rest of the audience throughout the movie. Now, it's time for the age old question - was it as good as the first one? To be honest probably not, but that doesn't mean it wasn't a perfectly entertaining film on its own. 

What exactly is it about? The film began as we reacquainted ourselves with undercover cops Jenko (Channing Tatum) and Schmidt (Jonah Hill). As hinted at the end of the previous movie, their former high school aliases Brad and Doug McQuaid are back, but this time, they're going to college. After a briefing with Captain Dickson (Ice Cube) at 22 Jump Street (the church located across the road from last year's headquarters), it seems that there's a new unknown drug doing the rounds called 'WHYPHY', which has recently killed a student on campus. And what exactly do they have to do? You guessed it, infiltrate the dealer, find the supplier. 

Of course, this once again proves to be a challenge for the crime fighting duo, as the appeal of university life seems to get in the way. Again, it seems that the two have opted for different places on the social hierarchy, Jenko choosing to hang with and 'investigate' the jocks, while Schmidt socialises with the artsy crew, trying his hand at some slam poetry while getting closer to love interest Maya (Amber Stevens). When Jenko befriends fellow jock Zook (Wyatt Russell), it causes a rift in the relation between him and Schmidt. 

So much so that they even need to get some impromptu counselling. 

There's that, on top of the fact that they can't exactly pull off being the young, just-out-of-high-school type anymore, as relayed to them many times by sarcastic college student Mercedes (Jillian Bell). 

And that ladies and gentlemen is where I choose to leave my plot retelling. Want to know more? I suggest you go see the movie. 

As I said, I enjoyed this movie a lot. You can probably already see the overwhelming similarities to the first film, however it's not as if they don't poke fun at that fact throughout the entire thing. It also helps that the comedic bromance between Jonah and Channing is really strong, and brought back in full force for the sequel. The dialogue was entertaining and at some points even clever (shocker), and at no point throughout the film were you angered by their unoriginal plot ideas, as they were delivered so comically. 

However, before you go and check out this sequel, I highly recommend you give the original a once over beforehand. Seriously, the abundance of self-referrencial jokes should not go un-understood (and yes, that's definitely a word), because they are seriously awesome. I mean don't get me wrong, the movie stands strong on its own, but the more jokes you understand the better your viewing experience will be. Plus, you'll appreciate it more when you see cameos from some familiar faces. 

I have to warn you now, you must absolutely stay for the credits. I'm not kidding, I'm dead serious. No, it's not one of those 30 second tidbits chucked on to the end of a film to try and get you to stay for the entire ending, this is an entire montage of awesome. No, I will not tell you what it is (no matter how much I want to), I just urge you stay and watch the entire thing. The only clue I'm giving you is that there may or may not be a special guest appearance from Seth Rogen

So that's officially the end of my review! I urge you to go and see this sequel as soon as possible, because it really is super awesome. I'm serious, go buy a ticket now! Til' next time . . .

Annabel xx

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Happy Birthday Ariana Grande!

Hello again readers! Today, I thought we could do the honour of getting in the birthday spirit (even if I am 2 days late). You may or may not know that singer Ariana Grande's birthday was on the 26th of June, and so I thought, why waste a perfectly good celebratory blog post opportunity, am I right? So how do I plan on doing this? By simply listing some fun facts about Ariana that you probably don't know (unless you're an Arianator, in which case just treat this as revision). Intro down, let's get cracking . . .

Fun Facts:

1. She was named after a character from Felix the Cat

How awesome is that? I mean, who doesn't love Felix? Damn that cat's cool. To have your name inspired by the character Princess Oriana from the 1988 movie is just a privilege - no, an honour. 

2. She's a Vegan

I have to give her some major respect for this one. I tried to be a vegan for a short time, and it is ridiculously hard (now I just opt for vegetarianism - the easy way out). Seriously, there are so many frustrating restrictions, and you need to put in so much effort all the time. She must certainly be dedicated, I'll give her that. 

3. She's Allergic to Cats, Bananas and Shellfish

Ironically, given the origin of her name and her character on Nickelodeon shows 'Victorious' and 'Sam and Cat', it seems that miss Grande is allergic to all things feline. However, the intolerances don't end there. She's also allergic to bananas and shellfish, though let's get real, it's not that big of a loss. I mean, who likes bananas? They're yellow and squishy, and just don't deserve to be a food. And as a vegan, I guess the seafood thing wouldn't really bother her terribly. But cats? I still can't get over that. At least she frequently wears cat ears to represent the love that could never be. 

4. She has a Whistle Register

You know that thing I have that I mentioned in my 100th blog post? It seems that I'm not the only one. Turns out, Ariana has one too. How cool is that? Basically, a whistle register is a super high part of the voice that has the timbre of a whistle (hence the name). For ages, I called it my recorder voice, but low and behold, it's actually a thing. 

5. She is Hypoglycemic

What was the first thing I did when I read this? Considering I don't have a medical degree, I most definitely googled it. Apparently, it means that you have low blood sugar. What does this mean for Ariana exactly? According to the treatment page on Wikipedia, it says that really all you need to do is eat more carbs. That is literally the best remedy ever. 

6. Her First Word was 'Bubble'

That is one awesome first word. Things like 'mum' and 'dad' are so cliché, but 'bubble'? That's just plain cool. And now, as a result, it just so happens to be her favourite word. 

7. She had a 'Harry Potter' Themed 20th Birthday Party

Dammit, if only I could've been invited, because that just sounds majorly awesome. Who didn't love 'Harry Potter' growing up? I'm pretty sure every girl around my age wanted to be Hermione Granger at some point in their lives, and apparently Ariana was no exception. The only difference between her and I being that I never got to meet Rupert Grint. 

Nor did I have a cake like this. 

So that's officially the end of my post! I hope you guys all found it vaguely interesting. Happy belated birthday Ariana (even though you're not reading this)! Til' next time . . .

Annabel xx

Summer Blog Challenge 4: Fit for Summer

Greetings once again blogosphere! The time has come again for my new instalment of the summer blog challenge, this post's theme being 'Fit for Summer'. As some might've guessed, I initially found this topic to be rather challenging. Why? Simply because I absolutely loathe sport and most forms of exercise. However, there is always encouragement to shake things up a bit and interpret the theme in whatever way you like, so this time, I have opted to write about some of the strangest weight loss techniques that people use to get 'fit for summer'. Such creativity. So without further ado, let's kick things off . . . 

Whiffs of Peppermint

No, you have not just obtained dyslexia, you have indeed read that subheading correctly. Apparently, sniffing peppermint is the weight loss craze that's all the rage at the moment. Why? Well, it supposedly works by lowering your levels of hunger, and as a result your calorie intake according to a bunch of studies conducted in December. I honestly don't know why this would even be tested in the first place. What kind of person would be all 'I'm feeling a tad bloated, quick, pass me the peppermint so I can inhale it ASAP!'. Although, I guess if it works, the weirdness can just take a backseat.

The Colour of your Dishes

Sure, I've heard all about the psychological aspects of colour theory, but who knew they could have a physical effect also? According to some studies published in January this year, eating on red plates helps you eat less. However, I honestly don't know how this is supposed to make a difference. I originally thought red induced hunger (hence its use on the majority of fast food restaurant logos). Although, if this is the case, why would that encourage you to eat less? There are still a bunch of stupid, unanswered questions to do with this one, but I guess you never know until you try it.

Paying with Cash

Again, what even is this? It all supposedly has to do with psychology (which personally, I'm kind of cynical about). Apparently, paying with cash rather than credit makes you more inclined to purchase healthier foods. Personally, I always pay with cash, but if I were to choose between a banana and a donut, no doubt about it, I'd always go with the latter. However, according to some studies conducted in schools using debit cards as well as money, those using cash tend to be opting for nutrition. Well, to each their own I guess.


If I were you, I'd take this one with a grain of salt. However, as always, studies were conducted, and apparently ripping open chocolate wrappers rather than chip packets lowers abdominal fat. How? I have absolutely no idea. As I say, it's probably just a long-winded myth released by Cadbury, however I plan to take it at face value and follow this one blindly.

The Temperature of your Room at Night

These seem to just be getting harder to believe as we go along. Seriously, I don't know how this is a thing. However, somehow, it is. According to some random tests done last summer (or winter if you're located in the southern hemisphere like me), lowering the temperature of your air conditioning a couple of notches helps you to lose weight. Once again, the question of how is left unanswered. I think this is stupid and probably won't work, and the fact that my room will be a few degrees cooler tonight is nothing but a coincidence.

Organised Workspaces

Once again, we're faced with a psychological weight loss trick (and once again, I'm dubious). I don't know how or why this is possible, but apparently working in an organised space has been proven to encourage you to make healthy decisions in regards to your diet. If this is the case, it certainly explains a lot. Now, please excuse me while I remove the week-old food wrappers and countless bottles of nail polish from my desk.
Congratulations! You've now made it to the end of the list. As you've probably gathered from my ramblings, I'm not exactly a firm believer in all of these weight loss techniques, but hey, you may as well give them a go. At the very least, it'll make for an interesting weekend. Til' next time . . .
Annabel xx

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

'A Million Way to Die in the West' Review (with GIF's!)

Hello again my readers! It seems that I've really been hitting the movies hard lately, and as a result, have another review to share with you all today. I'm assuming everyone is familiar with 'Family Guy' creator Seth MacFarlane (and if you're not, where have you been in life?). What happens when he finally makes his debut in a leading role on the big screen? I guess you'll just have to continue reading to find out.

I'll tell you now, it was pretty cool. To be completely honest with you, I never even expected to go and see this. It just so happened that 'Bad Neighbours' was showing at an inconvenient time, and this was the next best option. Perhaps G-brother from above was sending me some sort of sign, because I really am glad that I got to see this. If you're after some sophisticated, family-friendly humour, I'd be steering clear of this film. However, if you're normal and are just looking for some easy laughs, then this is more than appropriate.

The story revolves around Albert (Seth MacFarlane), a humble sheep farmer who absolutely loathes the west, despite having lived there all his life. At the beginning of the film, he is dumped by his longtime girlfriend Louise (Amanda Seyfried), who has opted for financial stability in her relationship with moustachery owner Foy (Neil Patrick Harris). Meanwhile, notorious outlaw Clinch Leatherwood (Liam Neeson) is on his way to town, sending his begrudging wife Anna (Charlize Theron) to the small county of Old Stump whilst he and his countless right-hand men continue their banditry.

Soon after she settles into town, Anna befriends Albert, and agrees to assist him in winning back ex-girlfriend Louise. Of course, no surprise here, they end up developing romantic feelings for one another, which as you can imagine, doesn't go down well with Clinch. Throughout the movie, Albert is also seen confiding in his pals Edward (Giovanni Ribisi) and Ruth (Sarah Silverman), who are there along the way for moral support.

Guess what? There's really no more to it than that. You're probably all wondering where the rest of my plot retelling's gone, but really, that's it. I honestly can't divulge anymore information without accidentally letting a few spoilers loose into the blogosphere, so I suppose you'll just have to be satisfied with this for the time being.

As I said, I found this movie really entertaining (probably more than I should've). If there's one thing I generally hate, it's movies set in the wild west. Similar to Albert in the movie, the west and I just don't seem to get on. I just find anything set there to be immensely boring. Seriously, that one part in 'Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure' just ruined the whole movie for me. However, it seems that I may have found my exception to the rule (predominantly due to the fact that the entire film was basically poking fun at the stupidity of the west, but whatever). Never, in the just under two hours I was cooped up in the cinema, did I lose interest in this movie. I found some of the dialogue to be really cleverly written, and even the bits that began to verge on OTT stopped just in time.

I think for the first time in my life, I didn't find any of the characters in this movie unlikeable or tediously annoying. That really is one massive achievement for Seth Macfarlane. How did he conduct this magic? I do not know. But really, even the villains in the movie I still respected and found entertaining (pretty much because the two adversaries were Liam Neeson and NPH, and let's face it, there's no way I wasn't going to like them). I suppose some people could misinterpret the sarcastic whit of protagonist Albert and find him arrogant or precocious, however if you do, there's just no hope for you in life. I'm sorry, but you'll just never understand any kind of comedy.

There really is something to accommodate for everyone's sense of humour in this movie. You've got the physical gags in spades, yet you've also got some seriously witty, satirical jokes lodged in there as well. However, there are some cameos which really just make the film that much more awesome. I won't spoil them, I promise, but I totally geeked out at all the obvious referencing. I don't want to build it up or anything, but this little guest spot is seriously the best thing you'll ever see in your life. Ever. Neil Patrick Harris also got to grace us during the film with his performing arts talents, this time engaging in a song and dance revolving around the subject of moustaches. It was truly legendary.

To top off this short little review, I just want to reiterate the fact that I think this movie's pretty great (surprisingly so). It's not perfect, however it doesn't pretend to be. This film's ideal if you just want a fun time out at the cinema and some good laughs. However, I warn you now, just don't go with your grandparents or something, because that would be a horrendous and irreversible experience. The acting's entertaining, the dialogue and storyline are engaging, and also, did I mention that awesome cameo? If I were you, I would definitely be sold.

So that's the end of my review! I hope I've given you all another movie to consider next time you find yourself at the cinema in search of entertainment. $14 for a ticket? I think yes. Til' next time . . .

Annabel xx