Films These Days!: On rerun culture

I’m a little bit worried about what future generations will look back on when they study the beginning of the twenty-first century. It seems to me that since the pop culture and political uprisings of the 60s, Western films have slowly cultivated a culture of repetitiveness and lacklustre creativity. While the creativity of certain individuals has flourished in our mediocre epoch, there seems to be a decline in original thought and mind-blowing talent. Proper art, something that was all the rage just a few decades ago, now seems few and far between. Skilful acts such as directing a film that…

How Never Let Me Go is like feeding cats

Every morning I feed my two cats. Every morning I try to get them to calm down while I put their food in their bowls, to wait for me to finish before they start eating. More often than not, they have completely forgotten their lesson from the day before to sit and wait. It can be very frustrating, but I try to remember that they are just cats; they don’t have the same memory capacity humans have. So I forgive them, and I’m patient with them, and I pursue my quiet training in the calmest way I can. I recently…

We are stardust before we are divided

  Stefan Klein, the acclaimed writer behind The Science of Happiness and The Secret Pulse of Time, is on a mission to connect laypeople with the diverse and often misunderstood realm of science. With his latest book, We Are All Stardust, Klein sits down with some of the world’s most prominent scientists and poses the questions that us laypeople feel too intimidated to ask. The result is a collection of casual conversations with people who, at first, seem so extraordinary that we will never understand them. Yet, Klein brings them back to Earth, and we learn that they are just…

True Despair, True Connections

Worthless is the real-life story of young author Robyn Hennesy’s struggle with sexual abuse, eating disorders, bullying, depression, self-harm, criminal activity, and drug addiction. Told in a raw and practically unedited form (it feels like we are sometimes reading the quickly scribbled diary entry of a teenager) we are brought face-to-face with all the terrible and heart-wrenching moments of Robyn’s, and her twin sister Ashleigh’s, life growing up in Surrey, England. They are average young girls, who have ordinary aspirations and dreams. This is all disrupted when, at age nine, the twins begin to starve themselves and worry about their…

The Horror within Fairy Tales

Crimson Peak is the latest film from acclaimed writer and director Guilermo Del Toro.  In true Del Toro style, the film is grim, yet strangely beautiful. Reminiscent of his earlier work, Pan’s Labyrinth, Crimson Peak is more than just a horror film; it’s also about why the expectation of a fairy tale marriage is damaging. We follow the young aspiring author, Edith Cushing (Mia Wasikowska) as she falls in love with a mysterious Baronet from England, Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hiddleston). The pair meet in New York when Thomas comes to get investment money from Edith’s father, Carter Cushing (Jim Beaver)….

Lord of the Merchandising

I remember seeing Riverdance live at some point during my childhood in America, and at the time, I can recall that I was amazed by it. Here was a group of talented and enthusiastic dancers, performing incredible feats right before my eyes. So, as you can imagine, when I discovered that I could get my hands on a free double pass to Lord of the Dance, I was just a teeny bit ecstatic. I should really remember to have lower expectations in life. Lord of the Dance delivered on everything that the typical audience might want; spectacle, talent, pyrotechnics, and…

Money First, Then God: A Reflection on Unattractive America

I am constantly asked the question – where are you from? No matter what the situation, my reply is always shameful – I’m from the United States. Because of this shame I decided to leave my home of eighteen years and move halfway across the world to Australia, all by myself. Lots of people tell me that this was a bold and courageous move, but for me, it seemed to be the only option that I had at the time. I was desperate, sad, and most of all, ashamed to be a part of America. Although it’s been eight years…