MISSION IMPOSSIBLE GHOST PROTOCOL
Tom Cruise is back as Agent Ethan Hunt. The fourth film of the series (and the first not to mention what number it is in the title) is, well, for lack of a more descriptive word, it's a ride.
Mission Impossible 4 has Cruise and his star studded team including Simon Pegg and Jeremy Renner, chasing a dangerous terrorist named Hendricks before he starts a nuclear war. He gains access to Russian nuclear launch codes and an attempt to stop him at the Kremlin ends in disaster with half the complex being blown sky high and the IMF [Impossible Mission Force, not the International Monetary Fund] being blamed. As Ethan Hunt escapes the Russian police and is picked up by the Secretary of Defence, he learns that the President has issued Ghost Protocol and that the entire IMF has been disavowed. This means no backup, no support. His team is not of his choice anymore. As they are attacked, Jeremy Renner's character latches onto Hunt and joins the team. Undaunted, our heroes move to Dubai and later Mumbai to stop the certain catastrophes that Hendricks will otherwise cause.
Let's start with the bad. The really huge absence from this movie was the presence of a good villain. Don't get me wrong, Michael Nyqvist is decent as the delusional Hendricks but he's no Philip Seymour Hoffman. The best part of MI3 was probably how intense and personal the conflict between the villain and the hero was. Hoffman was merciless and cold. Nyqvist just couldn't pull off the super villain character. In fact, the female assassin Moreau, beautiful, heartless, devoid of compassion, would have been a better leading villain. Hendricks might have performed better but the script did not allow too many points of interaction between Hunt and him for it to work.
The story is simpler, more linear than MI3, which is a disappointment. The departure of J. J. Abrams from the helm also added uncertainty but Brad Bird proved that he can deliver in a live action movie. The best part of any MI movie is the stunts and holy crap, are there some awesome stunts. From the now trademarked jumping off the building, to jumping down a parking garage, jumping into a fan shaft and jumping onto a train and just generally jumping a lot, the stunts are fantastic. They're on a whole new level from the last movie. The movie is very fast moving and the audience is kept entertained all throughout.
The new team is the other great bit. Simon Pegg, from the success of his cameo as “behind-the-desk” techie Benji Dunn has a much bigger role this time around and is the cause of much of the humour throughout the movie. Jeremy Renner is immense as William Brandt and it's no doubt he's being touted the heir to the franchise if Cruise calls it quits. The girl, Paula Patton, is solid as well. Anil Kapoor is in the film. The Indian billionaire playboy is written as an idiot and Kapoor does well with his small cameo role.
Ghost Protocol isn't a movie you watch to be intrigued. It's almost the perfect popcorn movie. Go out and watch it at Cineplex. Worth it. A solid 7/10
True to the name, this YouTube channel is awesome. Very, very awesome. Key of Awesome is a series of parody videos, shared by Barely Political. Anyone who has ever seen any video by Barely Political (Obama Girl, anyone?), knows that they are insanely funny. Trust Key of Awesome to take a song and twist it into something so funny you will literally laugh out loud.
With over fifty videos, making fun of well known songs and artists, Key of Awesome is a channel to keep oneself updated about. Their parodies of Kesha, Pitbul, Harry Potter, Eminem, James Hetfield and even Batman are good ways to idle away more time on the internet. With recurring characters such J Lo, Pitbull and Mark Douglas's very believable impressions coupled with whacked out lyrics, this channel will keep you hooked. Or subscribed.
Once you watch one video from this series, you will go through the others. And they are worth it. For first timers, here's a list of recommendations to get you started:
Moves like Jagger Parody Key of Awesome #46
Harry Potter and the Steamy Slow Jam Key of Awesome #44
The Dark Knight is Confused Key of Awesome # 8
Lady Gaga: Bad Romance Parody Key of Awesome #6
Heavy Metal Cats Key of Awesome #1
So here's to you getting glued to the computer screen and DUCKY OF AWESOME. You will find out soon what that means.
“If I got a dime for every single time I died in Dark Souls, I'd have a dollar in the first hour!”
The aforementioned quote is from a gaming comrade and it's the best way I can describe this atrocious game. It's intricate to the point that it becomes addictive, and anyone who's finished this game deserves respect.
The protagonist of the game is an Undead. He escapes from an Undead Asylum (that takes creepy to the next level) and somehow he becomes the chosen Undead and has to ring the Bell of Awakening in the ancient lands of Lordran. Well, that's pretty much it for the plot. Not one of the best stories of the year but the game covers up the deficient plot by killing players over and over again. (Yes, I'm taking revenge against the developers for making the game super hard and so addictive.)
The dark, open world gameplay is brilliant and combining it with the gloomy and dreadful atmosphere is just about enough to bring shivers to the toughest of gamers. Besides its behemothic difficulty, the game has severe drawbacks in terms of tutorials, leaving players fumbling around. But there's plenty of loot and gears, which sort of makes up for it by helping you along. Every corner in the game has a risk or reward situation and you can either get treasures or be greeted by a hideous monster about to ambush you.
Speaking of monsters, Dark Souls has a whole arsenal of those and each one is tougher than the last one. To defeat them, it's crucial you understand their attack patterns, defend a lot and strike at the precise moment. Of course you'll die the first hundred times but gradually things will get a little less hard. The game also excels in a four player co-op for easy sailing in some really thorny regions but there's a downside as well. If you team up with random, less honourable players, they might backstab you and steal your souls and loot you fought so hard to obtain. So you better keep your team confined to reliable friends.
Dark Souls is perfect for hardcore RPG players and gamers who whine games these days are too easy. Every time you die, an arcane enthusiasm prompts you to push the retry button again. So if you decide to venture in the lands of Lordran, you better learn to block and parry because mindless offence will only get you killed, a thousand times.
“If your suspect is surprised for more than one second, he is faking it.” - Dr. Cal Lightman
“Lie To Me” is a show that really does lie to you. In fact, it promises a premise full of educational excitement and entertainment but then proceeds to flatter to deceive. The idea of the show revolves around Cal Lightman (Tim Roth) and his group of friends, who solve crimes by just using applied psychology; decoding Facial Expressions and Body Language. There are no sudden moments of revelation, no clues left around to discover and certainly no lengthy chase scenes. In this respect, Lie to Me is much different than all the other police procedurals. The only thing separating the Law from the truth is a Liar and Cal's mission is to expose the true colours of the antagonist in question.
Tim Roth has been hailed as brilliant for his roles as Cal Lightman. His dialogue delivery and his own body language have been praised in all quarters. The fact that he borrows too heavily from great method actors like Al Pacino has not been ignored but rather appreciated. His character has an added intrigue thrown into it. Cal is cocky, brash, divorced, infallible and prone to temper tantrums. He isn't your perfect hero nor is he the much loved anti-hero. He stands somewhere where the lines blur between eccentric and dedicated, just like it happens in reality, making him much more interesting to the viewers and adding some much needed boost to the show.
The show is also like its lead Cal Lightman. Lie to Me is packaged well, has a first class production team behind it and promises a lot, but it is prone to some deficiencies, mainly a poor script on a daily basis. The show isn't interesting because of the crimes it solves, but rather the human interaction between Cal and the group of people surrounding him. Sometimes, it drops an informative nugget on body language and introduces characters we can relate to in the real world. But these instances are far and few in between to really sustain an interest. The story each episode is like a repeat of an old one, over and over again.
But, bearing through the gaping holes in the plot line, Lie to Me, does give one a chance to really learn how body language actually works. The slight dilation of the eye, the moment of hesitation and even the wringing of the hands all point towards a liar. And these aren't the only things. If you get some time, give the first season a view.