19 thoughts I had while watching Hot Fuzz for the first time

Hot Fuzz is the second film of the Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy by director Edgar Wright and stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. Each film parodies other films within its designated genre. This time around, Hot Fuzz pokes fun at action and buddy cop films. Though the film is categorized as a comedy, I personally believe that the script and cast play it off so seriously, which is why I would consider it an action movie with comedic moments. 

  1. This police station is really nice compared to the ones in the US
  2. As expected, Wright uses a montage to card stack Angle’s qualifications
  3. Peter Jackson, Martin Freeman, Steve Coogan, Cate Blanchett cameos
  4. Once again Edgar Wright proves he’s the king of visual comedy 
  5. When you arrest your boss’s son
  6. I like how the town’s biggest issues are swans and a street performer 
  7. Pegg and Frost are gold 
  8. Why is it every time I see someone in a black cloak I think of a cult?
  9. The English countryside and the Midwest are more similar than you think
  10. How do you get a naval mine?
  11. Now that’s a movie collection!
  12. No human can actually break a concrete church spire
  13. So I guess the Neighbourhood Watch is a cult now
  14. They killed them because they lost the Village of the Year award
  15. Where did he get a horse?
  16. Wouldn’t it be easier to just call the London police instead of just killing the whole watch himself?
  17. Hot Fuzz is clearly satirizing cops films, but I need more substance than car chases and gunfights
  18. Dead by castle life-size model
  19. I like how they just have that mine laying around for someone to trip over

To be honest, Hot Fuzz is my least favorite of the Cornetto trilogy with Shaun of the Dead being the best. I found some of the jokes fall flat, and after a while, I got tired of seeing the whole police force believing the murders were just accidents. It does pick up about 20 minutes into it after the first two people are killed. After watching this, I’m probably going to rewatch Shaun and At World’s End, but this does get me excited for Wright’s new film Baby Driver.

13 Reasons Why You Should Watch 13 Reasons Why

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past week and a half, you’ve most likely heard about Netflix’s new series 13 Reasons Why by now. Based on the novel of the same name, the show follows a high schooler named Clay who receives 13 audio tapes after a classmate’s death. Whoever receives the tapes is one of the 13 reasons why Hannah Baker took her own life. In no way shape or form is this a fun show to watch, but it is informative on the effects of bullying and features great overall performances from its cast.
1.) It doesn’t sugarcoat the life and death of Hannah Baker

2.) The extremely talented young & diverse cast

3.) Amazing editing and cinematography that seamlessly transitions between the present, the past, and Clay’s imagination

4.) Shows what high school really looks like today 

5.) The characters that aren’t all one note or follow stereotypes

6.) There isn’t really a clear villain of the show until the end of the tapes 

7.) Tony’s mixtapes are BOMB

8.) Clay is played by one of my favorite up and coming actors: Dylan Minnette

9. )It’s a cautionary tale that I think will start up conversations about bullying between viewers

10.) Also, it’s kind of a mystery because we slowly discover why Hannah did what she did  

11.) It brings awareness to the signs of suicide

12.) Due to it’s format and having all the episodes released on the same day, you can choose to binge-watch it or take your time. This is a really smart idea because in the show the teens have to decide if they are going to listen to the tapes in one sitting or over a longer span of time.

13.) More than likely you will just end up hating yourself afterwards, but 13 Reasons Why brings to life the reality that some teens are facing today.

Thoughts on Yoga Hosers

Have you ever seen a movie so bad that you had to tell everyone about it? For me, that would be Yoga Hosers – the 2016 “attempt” at making a teen action comedy by Kevin Smith. Over the holiday break, I watched this movie for the first time. It must have been VERY late at night, because the only thing I remember about it was that it was terrible. Yoga Hosers is the textbook definition of nepotism, as Smith cast his daughter, Harley Quinn Smith, and her best friend, Lily Rose Depp, as the two leads. This movie is like driving past a car crash because you just can’t look away.

  1. Do you think Kevin Smith wrote all of the songs in this movie?
  2. I don’t think that many people would want to come to a mini-mart within a span of ten minutes.
  3. When will Austin Butler stop being cast as a teenager?
  4. These people’s Canadian accents are almost worse than their acting.
  5. Why would anyone trust a guy named Yogi to teach you yoga?
  6. Don’t you hate it when you have to pause a movie just to read the title cards?
  7. Where did the idea for this movie even come from? Smith says the idea for Tusk and Yoga Hosers came to him during a podcast. I think he has a deep-seeded hatred for Canada.
  8. Harley Quinn and Lily Rose aren’t too bad singers, but they keep making awkward eye contact with the camera.
  9. Wiener dogs aren’t evil.
  10. Movies like this give millennials a bad name.
  11. Much like Yogi Bear, I don’t think Kevin Smith understands how copyrights work.
  12. Ladies and gentlemen, this is why you always bring a weapon.
  13. These special effects are borderline Syfy Channel level of bad.
  14. STAN LEE CAMEO
  15. When one of your villains is a foot tall Nazi sausage, I expect to have more sausage jokes.
  16. Yoga isn’t going to help you here.
  17. Why is the Bratzi’s insides bright orange?
  18. As an American, I have no clue how the Canadian justice system works. This is a complete guess, but I don’t think that they have suspects share the same police interrogation room.
  19. If I had a secret lab, I probably would put it in the bathroom too.
  20. This guy’s accents are very bad – like an annoying theater kid trying to do a British accent level of bad.
  21. After reading some reviews, I’m surprised that no one brought up how Yoga Hosers blatantly ripped off countless other movies.

 

In many ways, this was just a remake of Smith’s cult classic film Clerks. The only difference was that this time, it was teenage girls in Canada with Nazis. One thing I truly liked about the film was the graphics, but that was about it. Like with most Kevin Smith films, it seemed like the film was just one big inside joke that no one understood. I get that artists should take risks, but most of Smith’s career has been a risk that has had no payoff.

As I start to enter adulthood, I’m starting to realize that these kinds of movies aren’t designed for me. This was made for pre-teen girls, and I know that I probably would have loved it seven years ago. That doesn’t give it a pass though, because the plot was still trash. Leads Harley Quinn Smith and Lily Rose Depp weren’t terrible in their roles and had chemistry, but their acting still felt kind of stiff in front of the camera. Kevin Smith has both directing and writing talent, but he needs to start making content that isn’t just for his small fan base. I think Smith needs to work on projects that he doesn’t have full control on. When someone has too much power, things always fall apart. Currently, Smith has been killing it on the CW. He directed my favorite episode of The Flash, “The Runaway Dinosaur”. Smith is currently working on the final film in the True North Trilogy, with the kind-of-sequel to Tusk and Yoga Hoser called Moose Jaws.

January Favorites

Hello February! This month I thought a lot about the future: the future of my schooling, my relationships with others, and of course, this blog. I enrolled in summer classes, booked a trip, bought my prom dress, had my final color guard performance, and cooked my heart. What you don’t see here on my blog is that some of the recipes I attempt just don’t turn out well. I start the week off by cooking my first choice recipe. If it turns out good, it gets photographed, typed up, and posted on Saturday. About half of the time the recipe is a fail, so I either have to remake it or start from scratch with a new idea. Don’t worry… no food goes to waste, because someone always ends up eating it!
The Magicians (Netflix)

About a year ago, I heard about this series from Black Nerd Comedy, aka Andre Meadows on YouTube, who describes it as a grown-up version of Harry Potter. Unlike my friends, I wasn’t a huge Potterhead. I thought that since it was just some random SyFy channel show, it would be canceled after one season. This series is a fresh take on what I feel like is the typical fantasy based story. I find The Magicians is more like the Percy Jackson books than Harry Potter. As it takes place in both New York and a fantasy realm, the people are divided into houses based on what they can do. The best way to think about it is taking the overall idea of Camp Half-Blood and replacing the demigods with the wizards from Harry Potter.


Salt Lamp

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001892AX2/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I’m a sucker for anything that claims to help with seasonal allergies. In the past, I’ve tried nose strips, vapor rub on my feet, Neti Pots, and even drinking salt water. Supposedly salt lamps can help with congestion by purifying the air. I got one for Christmas from my mom, but I’m still skeptical if it actually works or not. Still, it makes a cool lamp and has an adjusted knob that’s great for at night.

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Beats Solo 3 Wireless

From the moment I get up, I have my headphones in and listening to something. I decided to upgrade my old Beats Solo 2 to the Solo 3 wireless because I like being able to control my phone with ease without having it in my hands. The sound quality hasn’t changed much, but the wireless feature is more convenient for me. For a full battery, it takes about an hour and a half to charge. That by itself usually lasts me a week.

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Split

January is kind of a dead month for movies, and the ones that did come out were garbage. I saw Split on its opening night, and I was really enjoying it until the “beast” came into the story. It’s already better than 90% of any other horror movie that’s going to come out this year, but it tries to make sense of a weird ending with a M. Night Shyamalan signature plot twist. Until the third act, it was set in a believable reality; then out of nowhere a guy is climbing up a wall. Up-and-comer Anya Taylor-Joy did a good job, but James McAvoy carried the story.


Instant Oatmeal 
This month I found three big boxes of oatmeal that I forgot I bought a while back. Most mornings, I add in granola, such as Bear Naked V’nilla Almond Fit, and maybe a tablespoon of peanut butter if it’s too thin. It takes about two minutes to make and keeps me full until I get home.

 

Recent Watch History

From about Thanksgiving to Valentine’s Day, I go through a period where I binge-watch shows like crazy. I’ve compiled a list of what I’ve enjoyed so far in no particular order. One of my weird habits is that I’ll watch a few different shows at the same time. This happens because I’ll start a show and get bored of it, then end up coming back to it later. This isn’t even close to everything I’ve streamed, but on average, about half of the things I watch ends up being utter garbage.

 

What I’m watching now
The Magicians- Netflix ( Currently on Episode 6)

Harry Potter meets Percy Jackson in this Sci-Fi channel original television show.

Conspiracy- Netflix ( Currently on Episode 2)

Your paranoid uncle’s favorite theories about Nazis and the Royal Family, all wrapped up in 12 hour-long episodes.

Luke Cage- Netflix ( Currently on Episode 3)

This third Marvel Netflix series revolves around a man with extraordinary powers who is trying to restore his quiet life by taking down the New York underground.

 

 

Series of Unfortunate Events- Netflix

The acclaimed children’s book series by Lemony Snicket finally gets the adaptation it deserves. The first season revolves around the Baudelaire orphans jumping from guardian to guardian and the mystery behind their parents’ deaths.

The Crown- Netflix

A young Queen Elizabeth struggles between balancing being Queen and a wife. I wouldn’t be surprised if Matt Smith and Claire Foy both won Emmys for their roles in the show.

Yoga Hosers- Netflix

Kevin Smith’s attempt at making a teen film based in Canada. (That’s all you need to know.)

Barry- Netflix

A biopic that explores Barack Obama’s time at Columbia University in the early 1980s.

Degrassi Next Class- Netflix

A guilty pleasure of mine that’s the newest version of the Degree series. It goes through the everyday lives of students at Degrassi Community School.

Red Oaks- Amazon

This was hands down my most favorite new show of 2016. Red Oaks centers around a young man who works as a tennis pro at an exclusive country club during the summer.

Buffy The Vampire Slayer – Netflix

Buffy Summer hunts and kills supernatural creatures.

Supernatural- Netflix

Sam and Dan Winchester hunts and kills supernatural creatures.

The Man in the High Castle- Amazon
Set in an alternate timeline where the Allies never won WW2 and the Nazi party and Japan control the United States. In this world, a series of short films depict the Axis losing the war, causing a young women to try to figure out where the films came from.

Fuller House- Netflix

The Tanner family is back in the follow-up series to Full House, featuring the same catchphrases and wacky scenarios they’ve been using since the 1990s.

November Favorites

THE HOLIDAY SEASON IS HERE! (Cue All I Want For Christmas) It’s the time of gift giving, family arguments, and overpriced ugly sweaters. This year couldn’t be over fast enough because a lot of amazing things are happening in 2017. Not to name everything, but I have graduation, my Chicago trip, my sister’s wedding, my moving out, and gtolley.com launching on January 1st. You heard it first; I’m changing up my blog and getting my own domain name. It’s going to be a busy year, but I still have one month left. So let’s get right into my monthly favorites!

What to listen to…
DNCE
I’m a child of the 00s, so of course I grew up on Disney Channel. Unlike my older sister, I wasn’t in distress when the Jonas Brothers called it quits in 2013. Under recommendation from a Snapchat story, I listened to the whole DNCE album in one sitting. Nothing this year compared to this. Joe Jonas’s R&B vocals mixed with the bubblegum pop and funk indie vibe the band gives off makes it the best album of the year.

What to wear…

UA Blitzing II Stretch Fit- Under Armour Hat

https://www.underarmour.com/en-us/mens-ua-blitzing-ii-stretch-fit-cap/pid1254123-001

I’m always trying new fashion trends, and one I’ve been loving is the sporty/athleisure look. (It gives me an excuse to wear workout pants at school.) During my trip to Indianapolis this month, I was dragged into an Under Armour store and found the perfect hat. Sure, I look like a 34 year old soccer mom or Luke from Gilmore Girls, but I’ve embraced it.

IMG_5990.JPGWhat to stream…
The Crown

The Crown covers Queen Elizabeth following her marriage to Prince Philip and taking on the throne. Claire Foy and Matt Smith are the perfect castings for the royal couple, and their chemistry is phenomenal. Just a heads up: the first episode has more drama in it than every episode of Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars combined.

img_3471What to see in theaters….
Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them

Fantastic Beasts is a different perspective into the world of witches and wizards, taking place in 1920’s New York. We are no longer stuck behind a desk for seven years, as we are apparated straight into the action. I wasn’t old enough to understand the awe and wonder Harry Potter had on its viewers when it was first released. The breathtaking visuals and brilliant screenplay, written by J.K. Rowling, caused me to have this feeling for the first time in many years. 2016 was filled with many rehashes of films we’ve already seen. Even being a reboot/ spin-off of the Potter franchise, Beasts is equally unique and brilliant as its predecessors. Although the Goldstein sisters stole the show for me, Newt Scamander played by Eddie Redmayne is an interesting enough lead to carry the inevitable following sequels.

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What to eat…

Pecan Pie

http://houseofyumm.com/pecan-pie/

‘Tis the season of eating endless amounts of leftovers from your holiday meal. As always for Thanksgiving, I was in charge of bringing dessert. This year I spiced the typical pies by making them miniature. My favorite of the three types I made was the pecan, hands down. The recipe I used liked to stick to the pan, so I would recommend making this in a normal sized pie crust.

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What to buy for the house…

Little Christmas Tree- Target

My favorite place in the world is Target’s Dollar Spot. You never know what junk you might find there. Of course during my weekly trip there, I found this cute little tree for $3. It’s the perfect size for a dining room table or in an office.

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Chef Review 

Due to Netflix constantly being updated, finding a new show on it can be hard. Hidden gems are buried between straight-to-DVD releases and Syfy original movies.
Chef was the indie darling that opened South by Southwest film festival in 2014. Last spring, Chef was picked up for distribution by Netflix.

Once an up-and-coming chef, Carl Casper, quits his jobs at a popular Los Angeles restaurant when the owner tells Carl to stick to the classics rather than make innovative dishes. Left to figure out what’s next, he ends up in Miami with his son and ex-wife. There, he is persuaded by his family and friends to launch a food truck, serving classic Cuban cuisine. The trip back to L.A. helps him repair his relationship with his preteen son, rediscovering his love for cooking along the way.
The film parallels the director, Jon Favreau, who wanted to go “back to basics” after directing multiple big budget movies back to back. Also standing in as the writer, Favreau embedded parts of his life into the main character. Both Favreau and the main character struggled between being a father and having a busy career.

Unlike Favreau’s past few films, Iron Man 1 & 2 and Cowboys vs. Aliens, Chef doesn’t rely on spectacle and action to fill in the runtime. The cast is what brings the movie to life.

In the movie, only three main characters are seen throughout the film. It seems like Favreau called a couple of his celebrity friends to fill the supporting cast, such as Scarlett Johansson, Robert Downey Jr., Dustin Hoffman, and Bobby Cannavale. Favreau does another self-insert in this production by playing the main character. Modern Family’s Sofia Vergara is Inez, Casper’s ex-wife. This isn’t your normal over the top Vergara; here she is compelling and doesn’t scream into the camera. Percy, Casper’s son, is played by Emjay Anthony. Percy helps run his father’s social media for the truck and brings his parents back together.

Chef brings life back to the dying genre of the road trip film. The scenes that took place on the movie’s road trip were actually filmed in their designated locations. While in Miami, the crew filmed at the Versailles restaurant, the Fontainebleau Hotel, and the famous Cuban restaurant, Hoy Como Ayer, in Little Havana.

In past years, Indie films have been more accessible to the general audience. Nowadays, creators have the tools to make quality content with almost nothing. All you need for a good movie are well-thought-out characters and a camera.

The run time is 1 hour and 55 minutes and rated R for language. Chef is a feel-good comedy that’s perfect for a night in.

36 thoughts I had while watching Escape from L.A. for the first time

As I go back into the hustle and bustle of the school year, I’m going to try to not procrastinate on my posts for my editor’s and my own sake. I really enjoyed doing my June story, 35 thoughts I had while watching the Princess Bride for the first time, and so I’m here to do it again with Escape from L.A. It’s a lot more fun than some other post, and I actually might try to do this once a month.

  1. John Carpenter directed this? This is going to be messed up. Let’s hope in a good way.
  2. Narration by Jamie Lee Curtis.
  3. Is this presidential candidate named Al Gore?
  4. Who would want to be president for the rest of their life?
  5. Did Batman: Arkham City steal this plot?
  6. If the CGI was any worse, this would be a Syfy channel original movie.
  7. That’s kind of a small wall for a maximum security prison.
  8. Why would he water his plants during a time like this?
  9. Who names their kid Snake?
  10. Electric chair or L.A.? I would pick the chair.
  11. Kurt Russell used to be a babe.
  12. How does a 20-something-year-old hijack Air Force One?
  13. Damn millennial and their video games..
  14. Wow! So many movies nowadays have ripped this off. Or did this rip off other movies that came out before it?
  15. The CGI is bad. Batman and Robin is better. It still triumphs over Spy Kids though.
  16. When you have worse effects than Sharkboy and Lavagirl, you have an issue. You might argue that it was the 90’s and that they didn’t start getting good until ten years age, but two words: Jurassic Park.
  17. How do they still have gas and bullets?
  18. STEVE BUSCEMI!
  19. I’ve never seen a net launcher, but I don’t think they work like that.
  20. How does everyone know his name?
  21. Unnecessary love interest.
  22. Steve Buscemi ex machina.
  23. 666 is their password.
  24. Snake is better at basketball than most of the Lakers.
  25. I’ve never been to L.A. or the east coast. Do they experience aftershock this much?
  26. What’s up with this music?
  27. NO SURFING IN ACTION FLICKS!
  28. Shouldn’t he be foaming at the mouth by now?
  29. Jackie Brown!
  30. Who carries red nail polish on them?
  31. Don’t waste your bullets.
  32. When did he get his jacket back?
  33. No red meat! Well, I’m screwed.
  34. Why would you want to shut down the whole planet? That’s a dick move.
  35. Happy Hunger Games!
  36. This is a sequel? Guess I need to do my research prior to watching next time.

 

Summer Streaming Recommendations + Dark Chocolate Bark

Streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime are the future of entertainment. The problem is that there are millions of shows and movies, and 70% of them are straight to DVD horror movies. So what should you spend your hours binge-watching?

 

Arrested Development

This genius comedy is basically a half hour running gag. The six Emmy and Golden Globe Award winner is the only show I can think of that features cousins falling in love and a banana stand. In one way or another, everyone can relate to this show because we all have that one member of our family that we just don’t talk about. I need to get someone addicted to this show so we can make George Michael and Cornballer references to each other.

Best Episode: Pier Pressure

 

From Dusk till Dawn

Quentin Tarantino. Who doesn’t love Quentin Tarantino? Maybe my grandma because she thinks he’s part of a cult. I think From Dusk till Dawn is his most underrated film, and it’s my favorite out of all the movies he’s written or directed. If you want to see Salma Hayek as a vampire stripper or Tarantino playing George Clooney’s brother, go ahead and stop everything to watch this film.

 

Stranger Things

I decided to jump on the bandwagon and watch Netflix’s Stranger Things. Fast forward eight intense episodes later, and I’m dead. Why did they leave so many questions unanswered? (Well, I suppose they want to make a season two.) However, I don’t want to wait a year or two – I need new episodes now!  If you’re a fan of ET or Super 8, you’re going to love it. It doesn’t waste your time with filler episodes and subplots, and it’s cut to perfection. I smell an Emmy in its future.  

 

Pokémon

Team Instinct for life!  I grew up in a weird era where I’m not really a 90’s child, but I was born in the 90’s. What made me connect to Pokémon was my older sister, who was obsessed with all things Pokémon. I just wanted to be “cool” like my big sis and play it. Nintendo marketed the heck out of the game overseas, luring you in with the Saturday morning cartoon, which persuaded you to buy the games, cards, and other merch. It worked! The show is classic and still continues on today. Back in the day, Cartoon Network would play Pokémon on repeat every day.

Best Episode: Here Comes the Squirtle Squad

 

Kung Fury

I couldn’t think of why you needed to watch Kung Fury, but I can tell you why I love it.

  • It’s an independent crowd-funded short film
  • It has a Dinosaur Cop
  • There is 1980’s era computer hacking
  • Kung Fu
  • WWII
  • Thor
  • Laser Raptors
  • The hero gains his powers when he is struck by lightning and bitten by a cobra
  • Hitler does kung fu and is called the Kung Führe
  • David Hasselhoff voices a talking car and sings an original song for the film
  • All the glorious puns

 

I hope this list is helpful and finds you a new show or movie to binge your day away. This week’s recipe can be as healthy as you want it, and the batch I made lasted me all day.

 

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Dark Chocolate Bark

Ingredients

  • One package of dark chocolate chips
  • Whatever you want to put into it ( In mine, I used ⅓ of unsweetened coconut and pecans)

Directions

  1. Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave, stirring every 20 seconds until smooth.
  2. Pour chocolate onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  3. Add on toppings of choice.
  4. Let it harden in the fridge for an hour.
  5. Break into small pieces.

10 Top Cult Classics 

cult clas·sic

noun

  1. something, typically a movie or book, that is popular or fashionable among a particular group or section of society.

Cult movies are a hard thing to pin down since everyone has a different definition of them. Personally, I see them as films that gained popularity after their initial release. My top ten changes from time to time because I’m always discovering new ones. Below are my current favorites and a little insight on why I picked them.

P.S. Rocky Horror Picture Show will never be on my list.
10.) Night of the Living Dead – The OG zombie movie

9.) Big Trouble in Little China – John Carpenter’s it’s so bad, it’s good action comedy

8.) Mamma Mia! – Meryl Streep singing ABBA

7.) Mad Max – Kickstarted the cult classic franchise

6.)Reservoir Dogs – The movie that started Quentin Tarantino’s career

5.)Monty Python and the Holy Grail – British humor at its best

4.) Clerks – A look into the life of working at a convenience store

3.) Scott Pilgrim vs. the World– It perfectly sums up what it’s like being in love + visual gags for days

2.) HeathersMean Girls with murder

1.) The Big Lebowski – Severed toes, bowling, and German nihilists