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About Photography / Hobbyist Heidi HinterbauerFemale/Austria Recent Activity
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Literature
About Time
Title: About Time
Word count: 4000
Author: Heidi
Fandom: Sherlock (BBC)
Rating: free
Characters: Sherlock Holmes, John Watson
Disclaimer: We are all aware that "Sherlock" is not mine.
Summary: This is a story about time: time spent grieving, waiting, coming to terms with what has happened. Time stopping. Time moving forward. John has lost his best friend, but it takes him a while to understand why his grief is so much deeper than that.
 About time
The Reichenbach case is your biggest challenge yet as Moriarty twists the knife deeper and deeper. It ends with your best friend on the roof of St. Bart’s and you on the pavement, staring up at him, your eyes following his tumbling form, the flapping coat tails like wings. You hear the thud of a body hitting the ground, just before you hit the blacktop yourself. You get up again. There are people. Sherlock, on the ground. Half-open, sightless blue eyes framed by blood-matted curls. There is no pulse. Sherlock Holme
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Literature
Bittersweet
Title: Bittersweet
Word count: 3500
Author: Heidi
Fandom: Sherlock (BBC)
Rating: free
Warning: Character death
Characters: John Watson, Sherlock Holmes, Mycroft Holmes, Greg Lestrade
Disclaimer: We are all aware that "Sherlock" is not mine.
Summary: There are days in their lives when things move so fast that John is unable to fully grasp the unfolding events as they are playing out until it is too late, like today...
Bittersweet
John and Sherlock are at the culmination of their latest case. They are running, chasing a criminal through the busy evening traffic, on foot, weaving in and out between cars, jumping back when somebody hits the breaks too late, bumping into hoods, having their ear drums assaulted with exasperated honking.
They are both panting with exertion, but Sherlock is still confidently leading the way, John following the blue scarf fluttering behind him…
Another honk.
A car swerves out of the way just in time as they plunge into the oncoming traffic, diving
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Literature
Midnight Visitor
Title: Midnight Visitor
Word count: 310
Author: Heidi
Fandom: Sherlock (BBC)
Rating: free
Characters: Sherlock Holmes, John Watson
Disclaimer: We are all aware that "Sherlock" is not mine.
Summary: There is one thing Sherlock didn't factor into his plan: How much he would miss John. The story is set a short time after Reichenbach.
Midnight visitor
He knows John's sleep patterns. He tells himself it will be easy to sneak in, just this once, and take a look - just one! - to make sure he's still there. He silently appears in the doorway to John's bedroom, his feet making not a sound on the old wooden stairs. For a minute, he just stands there like a wraith cloaked in shadow, watching John's chest rise and fall, mouth half open in a pale and grief-worn face. He almost jumps when there's a voice from the body in the bed, low and hoarse with sleep.
"I can smell you, you know. Even though you're not real." John's eyes remain closed even as Sherlock's breath hitches minutely, sta
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Literature
Between friends
Title: Between friends
Word count: 2585
Author: Heidi
Fandom: Sherlock (BBC)
Rating: free
Characters: Sherlock Holmes, John Watson, Mycroft Holmes, Mrs. Hudson, Lestrade
Disclaimer: We are all aware that "Sherlock" is not mine.
Summary: John, it's for a case! Honestly!
Between friends
When they marry, it's for a case. Of course it is. Mrs. Hudson, Lestrade and Mycroft are the only crowd they've been able to gather on such short notice to stand by as their witnesses as they sign the papers, and when the obligatory proclamation comes that "you may kiss the groom", John decides to grasp the nettle before things can get any more awkward.
He stretches up hastily and pecks Sherlock chastely on the cheek, congratulating himself on doing both of them rather a favour in getting this over with quickly and with the least possible embarrassment.
But Sherlock surprises them all when, after John has drawn back, he reaches out with both hands to gently cradle John's face and, under the astonis
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Literature
Don't look
Don't look
The fingers over Dean's eyes are cool and dry and gentle, and Dean begs for forgiveness for what he has to do, grabbing Cas' lapels desperately in his fist. But they both know it is inevitable and Cas just shakes his head to silence him, says "It's okay, Dean." trying hard to sound calm, as if this can't touch him, though he knows he's not quite succeeding. "It's okay. Just... don't look."
His voice is full of grief and trust and a plea to do this quickly, make it clean and painless for both of them.
There's a sharp exhale from Dean, like a sob but much more deep and raw, and suddenly there's a dagger lodged in Cas' chest. He isn't sure if it hit his heart but he thinks it might have from the overwhelming feeling of weakness enveloping him in an instant, wrapping him in dark velvet. Warm blood is cascading down his chest, pouring out faster than his shirt can soak it up, and dripping to the ground in vivid crimson.
Castiel's knees buckle but he keeps his hand firmly in place
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  • Listening to: Amber Run "5 AM", Dario Marianelli "Jane Eyre OST"
  • Reading: "Mrs. Fry's Diary" Stephen Fry
  • Watching: QI XL (N-series) (Got access to BBC iPlayer here!)
  • Playing: Bejewelled
  • Eating: frozen pizza and chocolate biscuits
  • Drinking: roibush tea
High time for an update with some big news: I am realizing my biggest dream and have moved to the UK, more precisely to London! After a fulminate application process at a food product development company, I moved during January and completed my move this week end, bringing my car and my things. Work starts on Wednesday.
The sad thing is: I don't feel like I'm living my dream at all. I worried so much about things going wrong that I had no time to enjoy it and the homely feeling that was always present whenever I came here has somehow, somewhere evaporated. I just hope I'm not making a big mistake because my intuition has deserted me (I neither feel bad, nor good about this move... and the latter is a worry in itself). It's really depressing to get to do all the things you always wanted to do - I got to drive off in my car, not stopping (figuratively) until I was here, something I've day-dreamed about doing countless times; I get to call this island "home" now. I even managed to juggle things in a way that makes me able to be in London, of all places! - and not feel it. Or rather, it feels like another business project, executed to perfection down the the smallest detail, but without much emotion. It's not even like I've come here and woken up to discover reality is much bleaker than my dreams. I'm not disappointed by the situation or anything - except in myself for not enjoying this more. This is a once-in-a-lifetime even. I don't think I'll ever be moving to the UK a second time. This is it - and it's passing me by, pretty much like my graduation, which I also couldn't enjoy because I had things to worry about. I'm not precisely worried now, but I'm missing that giddy, ecstatic feeling I'd expect to be experiencing right now. Sure, there have been glimpses of that feeling, but only briefly. Right now, I hope that I'll get back in touch with things when I know what to expect at work and that I guess that I will fall in love with England all over again come Spring...

The great Gatsby – I suddenly felt like watching this drama about the dark side of the American dream, so I did The acting was decent, but not that much room to unfold a performance. I haven’t seen Toby Maguire in anything significant in ages, but he was ok here. Leo DiCaprio didn’t seem like he was acting all that much, which is a sign of quality, I guess.
I have never read the book, but I guess it was a good script adaptation insofar that the story made sense and seemed comprehensive without any gaps. That’s rare in a literature adaptation, I find. But lot of the scenes would have looked better in a play. Indeed, this would be great in a theatre with a minimal cast.
The visual side of things was utterly disappointing. The green screen and CGI work was, frankly, atrocious. The lighting was terribly artificial, too. I didn’t not expect this kind of movie to have such a high percentage of computer-generated footage and stuff. It made the whole thing look not very well-made.
On the plus side, the music was great. Bold soundtrack, gorgeous score, but they could have given the songs more time to play out and generate an atmosphere – because that’s what this film was missing a little. Though it was perfectly paced, it didn’t draw me in emotionally.

The talented Mr. Ripley“ – I had never seen this one so I watched it with a friend. I don’t quite understand why I should feel for a psychopathic killer, though. At first, I had difficulty pinpointing where the story was going. Also, it was hard to discern the main character’s initial motivations. After that it was just chaos. I do give them credit for winding the thriller tighter and tighter, even when you think it can’t get any worse. But then again, it becomes all too predictable in the end and the main character loses all coherency.
Jude Law was good as the sleek, despicable playboy. Matt Damon also did a great job, especially with the scene where he frightens off Gwyneth Paltrow’s character. But all in all, I don’t really see what’s supposed to be so remarkable about this film. Its message is one we know: Don’t kill people – it never ends well. Anyway, ok film. And I thought it would be something like three hours, but it’s really just two ten. (Again: good pacing! Never boring, never rushed.)

Ondine” (2009) – Oh, this was a lovely film! I never thought I’d watch it because it just didn’t sound very promising when a friend dropped it off for me ages ago, but that night, it was the first item on my list that caught my eye and I liked it after 20 seconds of the trailer, so there.
So, a cute story about a girl fished from the ocean by an Irish fisherman. The mystical elements were expertly woven into it (and not entirely resolved by the ending, IMO) and it had a very dramatic and gut-twisting turn for the finale. Though the tag line sounds cheesy, the story did not seem generic at all.
The acting was delicious. Alison Barry is a revelation, expertly delivering her lines and bringing across that wise, little girl perfectly. Colin Farrell with his greasy, grey-streaked hair was also great (though they could tone down the eye liner a bit). By now, I appreciate his proficiency. Everyone else was marvellous, too.
On top of that, the Irish landscape played an important role. It was breath-takingly atmospheric and mystical... great choice for lighting and colour palette. It really added that special feeling, so kudos to the cinematographer.
Finally, there’s the soundtrack with hauntingly simple tunes and some Sigur Ros, for good measure. I immediately recognised it and was thrilled – and then it was even named in the film, playing and important role. What was fantastic was that this kind of music fits perfectly with those kinds of pictures.
All in all, a gripping film with stunning visuals, great atmosphere and a good story. Definitely a recommendation!

Jane Eyre“ (2011) – Found this on my HD and the trailer looked surprisingly intriguing, so I sat down for this Victorian classic. A good film! Of course, the story and the characters are a bit bewildering to the modern audience, but it’s good thought exercise to imagine how life would have been back then. It must have been incredibly hard and uncomfortable and I’m grateful for living in one of the most advanced countries in the world today, where a situation like this one would not ever appear.
Anyway, I’m rambling. So: on to the movie. The acting was fantastic. This was the first film with Michael Fassbender where I really go the chance to enjoy his acting. Mia W. was also delightfully Victorian. Jamie Bell was lovely too. I don't see enough of him. All parts were cast very well.
Visually, this was also stunning. I could find no flaws in the exquisite costumes, the incredible sets, the natural-looking lighting etc. A very well-made film with conventional editing, good pacing and a moving score.
Ok, I’m too tired now to think of more things to say.

The Interpreter” - Very good political thriller about a UN interpreter who overhears something she shouldn’t. I have to confess, the finer plot points went over my head because it all seemed very convoluted and confusing. But I hope I got the gist of it, mostly the warring concepts of right and wrong in the name of the greater good.
In any case, it was a very gripping movie. Kidman and Penn have excellent chemistry here and everybody delivers great performances. Also, looking at their blue eyes, I’m reminded that we are distant relatives (all blue-eyed people have a common ancestor some 6000 years back), which is a cool thought.
From a technical point of view, this was also well-made, though I think they could have put a bit more thought into FBI and Secret Service work because I don’t believe things really work like that...
Anyway, good film. Maybe I’ll get the details watching it a second time.

"Ocean's Eleven" (George Clooney version) - This was on TV one night and I watched it with my mom for the up-teenth time. Still a great movie, roaringly funny. One thing that endears it to me especially is that nobody really gets hurt.

Good Will Hunting” – I think I saw bits and pieces of this over the years on TV, but somehow those left a completely wrong impression and I never got around to watching this start to finish. I’m glad I did it now. This drama about a maths genius kid was really good, with a complex, but strangely likeable protagonist and straightforward, perfectly-paced story telling. I liked the depth of all the characters. They all seemed very human without becoming overly dramatic or cliché.
Good acting, too, though a few ad-libbed scenes were obviously included. I really like that they got Robin Williams and Stellan Skarsgård on board for this and it goes without saying that I love Matt Damon (and Ben Affleck as well).
Sets were obviously small, but effective. It looks like this movie worked on a budget, but they did the best they could, achieving a very gritty 90ies look, almost like a time document.
The score was a complete mess. I’ve never heard anything like it. It sounded like Danny Elfman put two or even three separate pieces of music on top of each other.
All in all, a very well-written piece of work from start to finish, with deep characters and fantastic dialogue, great banter and wit. And an ending I can really live with.

"Swiss Army Man" - After all the conflicting reviews about this, I went to the cinema with a friend to form my own opinion. It was not a terrible movie. There actually were some pretty funny moments, but I discovered that I found a lot of things hilarious that didn't make anybody else in the auditorium laugh... Awkward!! (It was mostly puns, which, I guess, the audience of non-native-speakers just didn't get.) And the fart humour was not that cringe-worthy (or even as copious) as I expected. The acting was nothing to write home about, though I have to hand it to Dan Radcliffe again that he manages to NOT remind me in any way of Harry Potter. The plot itself was full of illogical silliness. I also sense a bigger metaphor hidden in here. In fact, the whole movie - especially with that weird ending - feels like an allegory on life or something, but it was too well-disguised for me to make complete sense of it. Ah, and I greatly disliked the score.
Anyway, not a film to write home about, but I don't regret watching it, either.
Oh yes, and it was pretty much "what the hell" all the way through.

Three-hour-fan-edit of "The Hobbit". On the one hand, I have to say the cutting down of these three movies to one long film succeeded in seriously condensing the story telling, taking out more or less all of the boring bits and stretches, the nonsense about Radagast, the White Council, battles and so forth, while adding selected, yet important, bits from the extended version. On the other hand, this format shows up the inconsistencies and flaws in the original script and mistakes in directing, either because of the numerous original faults in the writing, or because the original cut just plain stretched so long across one scene that you had forgotten the beginning by its end, thereby covering up those mistakes that become noticeable here. In the edit, some aspects become downright nonsensical, like the crucial decision of Bilbo's to accompany the dwarfs, after all. To be fair, that and other things were handled better in the long version. The character developments suffer seriously, at least where they were noticeable before, namely with Bilbo and Thorin. Most actions become unexplained, motives remain hidden.
It’s lovely that Bilbo seems to be truly the center of this version of the movie. However, it makes all the dwarves look like slobs. Bilbo does ALL the work. And I mean ALL of it. They would be utterly helpless without him. Let’s recount, shall we: killed by trolls before even reaching the Misty Mountains, taken captive unawares in the goblin cave and likely killed in their sleep, butchered by Beorn, drowned in the Enchanted River, eaten by giant spiders, left to rot by Thranduil, incarcerated by the Major of Laketown, not able to find the ladder to the postern gate in time, not able to find the key hole,... They are utterly useless and would have given up long ago if not for Bilbo.
I also love the portrayal of Bilbo as a strong, intelligent, independent character. He’s the only one showing some sense.
This was an impressive, yet sad demonstration of how even the editing can’t save a terrible script. This had some gems, but they all came from Tolkien or Martin Freeman himself. Thought I have to say, the most iconic lines were tragically wasted. So, I'm not completely happy with this version, either. As a reader of the book, I would say it's more of a chapter-by-chapter moving illustration, little scenes that have difficulty finding a red thread of connection, a binding arch that can draw you in emotionally. But it makes me want to read the book again.
PS: the one thing (besides casting Martin Freeman as Bilbo) they got indisputably right in this movie was Smaug. Even in 2D he was still creepy as hell, a children's book dragon, grown up.

"Doctor Strange" - Saw it in 3D (no cheaper version available) but it was worth it. I don't know the comics, but this seemed like a pretty well-made film, all things considered. The plot was tight enough not to make the 130 min. runtime boring (there was only one philosophical speech scene and one fight scene that could have done with trimming). I feel here is some wasted potential for a bit more emo-drama, eg. like in IronMan 3. Benedict Cumberbatch was a perfect choice and he did a lovely job with all those emotions and the hero's journey. To be honest, though, the way the character was written, he did remind me strongly of Sherlock (with lots of Derek Shepard mixed in), with his arrogance and quips, and they certainly put in a few reminders (most notably, flipping up his collar, but other things too). There were some hilarious one-liners. The acting was good on all parts, actually, but I expected nothing less. Tilda Swinton was unexpectedly quirky. I did not anticipate that in this role.
Visually, this was masterfully done by all rules of the trade. The CGI and visual effects were flawless. I absolutely loved the sparks-and-embers effect of the portal magic and the bended reality scenes came across stunning in 3D. I couldn't spot a single flaw in the animations. However, there were one or two instances with flawed directing (or editing. Not sure what caused the inconsistencies), eg. Dr. Strange operating without mask (what the hell??) and then suddenly everybody's wearing masks after the dialogues concluded. The fight scenes also were beautifully choreographed. Cumberbatch certainly is up to the physical side of things, too.
The score didn't blow me away, but it added to the mix.
Oh, and good make-up and costumes, though they overdid it a bit with the scar tissue on Dr. Strange's hands.
Anyway, all in all an enjoyable ride. 4/5. Looking forward to seeing this again, if possible as a director's cut.
Oh, and about half the theatre walked out before the after-credits scene. What n00bs.
PS: Now I can't wait to read some Sherlock/Doctor Strange crossover fanfics!!

"Saint Amour" - watched this with mom and one of her friends at the cinema. Strange little French road movie about a French farmer trying to connect with his son. The plot turned into some metaphor about love and sex, parenthood, the journey through life and whatnot. I didn't really enjoy it. Not my kind of humour, either. To be fair, the acting was quite good.

"Wüstenblume" (Desert Flower) - Watched this biopic drama on Netflix due to nothing better to do. It's about a Somali woman emigrating to London and becoming a supermodel - and the first advocate against female genital mutilation. It's a very strong story with decent acting (Timothy Spall is absolutely brilliant as portly, slightly dishevelled star photographer with a sensitive heart) and a moving soundtrack, shot mostly on-location. Despite the heavy message (and sometimes unexpectedly disturbing footage), it was well-made, and this topic deserves attention, especially in this day and age, because backward "traditions" like this one are just one of the most obvious signs of inequality between men and women.

"Star Trek - Beyond" - Got this from the video rental store after having waited for ages. Despite the nutty concept (I mean, clearly, somebody watched too much Mars Attacks, and also had their imagination run amok in other ways), this turned out to be quite an engaging film. Had me glued to the screen, leaning forward in my seat through most of it (less because of the plot, though. It was more of a scene-by-scene tension. At some point, I though "what? This is all the plot is about? That's terribly generic."). I love the banter and the camaraderie, the comfortable friendships. Very endearing. It also had some genuinely hilarious moments that had me really laughing hard, and some very good, profound one-liners. Furthermore, I can see that this would have looked great in 3D.
The script had a bit of a disjointed feeling, like somebody had written it, saying "Guys, wouldn't it be cool if they did this?" or "That's going to make a great frame. How can we get them there?" and then they joined those scenes together. Like Monty Python's Holy Grail, only less funny. The editing was rigorous, obviously getting rid of some of the linking moments that would have made this feel more like a whole, but that cut down on runtime, which made the movie a reasonable length of just under two hours.
The acting was mostly good. It's always nice to feel that people are having fun on set. Karl Urban had a few lines where the delivery was too strong and stilted, but seemed to settle into it after a bit, too. The human side of Spock is lovely to see, Zachary Quinto does a great job there (and why can't he just make "lots of Vulcan babies" with Uhura?? I have the feeling that's kind of the conclusion he arrives at in the end, too ). Chris Pine is beginning to infuse Kirk with the necessary gravitas, too.
The visuals were a bit too computer-based for me. I mean, the original series (and most of the follow-ups) did either "real" effects or tried to avoid CGI. I think that was the right idea. Too much visual opulence is kind of distracting.
Ok, this review is really unstructured, but I liked the film. It was solid entertainment and I'm still not tired of the reboot, but hungry for more.
PS: watched the DVD extras and am appalled by how tacked-on the bit about Anton looks. They don't even explain why it's there.

"Captain America: Civil War" - I guess this was decent entertainment as far as action films go, but it lacked soul (slightly better than Winter Soldier, though). It's getting a bit old that Cap and Bucky are alternatively trying to kill and not-kill each other. Also, these movies are getting too full of characters. The need to give everybody room to unfold is one explanation for the run-time. I think they could have used that editor from Star Trek, though, who would have managed to keep this epic reasonably short and snappy, because honestly, this draaaged. After about half of it, my attention began to drift, especially since, though the script was alright, I got confused by the finer plot points once again. Ultimately, I'm totally on Tony's side, though, and I love that they took up the issue of collateral damage as the main point of this movie. All the destruction and death these "saviours" bring has been bothering me for quite some time and I'm glad they address this. I especially like how immediate this problem feels to Tony and I love how they continue to explore his human nature here, and the depths of his guilty conscience. I would have liked to learn more about him and Pepper splitting up. That added even more to his puppy-dog sadness. He remains the most interesting character of them all.
So, the plot was a bit lengthy, the twist came at a point where I just couldn't be bothered to care any more. But the acting was flawless. They are really losing someone perfect with RDJ (I think this was his last Marvel film). I've even grown used to Vision (I love Paul Bettany, but he didn't seem the right choice in Age of Ultron). I adored Daniel Brühl and Martin Freeman. The funny thing is, Daniel had a major part and only appeared in the credits as an afterthought. Martin didn't seem all that different from John Watson in military mode, which was kind of distracting.
The visuals were mostly good, though there were some over-the-top designs. Most obvious example: those nutty prison arrangements. CGI is getting so good you can't even see it any more. However, in the DVD extras, I learned that they also had a lot of epic practical effects and I thought those were buried underneath the flood of CGI so that you can't really appreciate how awesome they are any more because you can't tell them apart.
I barely noticed the score, but there was one song in the soundtrack: "Left hand free" by Alt-J is, hands down, my favourite from the band and it brings just the right groove to the screen. Great choice!
So, all in all, entertaining, but not really captivating. I had no problem disengaging from the screen a few times to go somewhere.

"La Famille Bélier" - My mom got this little French feel-good coming-of-age movie for Christmas. At first I didn't want to watch this film about a hearing girl with a singing gift in a deaf farmer's family, but the singing caught my ear. This was a well-acted movie with a good, if predictable story. I think it's a bit sad to handle a sensitive and important topic like this kind of disability in such a generic way, but you have to start somewhere. 

Primer – This sifi drama? Thriller? Mystery? about two guys building a kind of time machine in their garage went a little over my head. Think “Inception” but REALLY complicated, mixed with “Prestige”. Beyond the overall plot concept, I didn’t grasp any of the finer points of what happened.
The actors were decent. The whole production looked home-made, but in a good way with minimal budget, sort of a down-sized version of “Moon”.
So, maybe I’ll get this if I watch it again. Maybe I’ll understand it with the use of subtitles. As it stands, I can’t really say much else about this film apart from that the score was lovely.

Mr. Holmes – What a beautiful movie about an ageing Sherlock Holmes struggling with dementia, outstandingly played by Ian McKellen. His performance gave heart and depth to an aloof character, showing a realistic picture of old age. In fact, his Holmes reminded me a lot of my granddad, who is 93. In Milo Parker, he had a shining co-star as his young friend Roger. I thoroughly enjoyed his lively and enthusiastic performance, which still had a subtle edge to it that spoke of a mature actor. All other supporting roles were also flawlessly cast, though I’m a bit sad we didn’t actually get to see Watson. Then again, I suppose this film was all about Holmes and it was certainly a conscious decision to exclude the doctor.
The movie was beautifully made, with gorgeous shot compositions – a painting each, wonderful colours and pictures of the English countryside. The costumes were flawless and elegant, perfectly capturing the Victorian era at the turn of the century and onwards. Together with a soft score by Carter Burwell, it made both a romantic and melancholic picture, entirely about having to let go of the past while still trying to hold on.
So, a touching piece of work that lives off the acting of McKellen and Parker. The duo are a delight to watch, sticking their heads together like a pair of school boys while the mother stands in the background, scowling.

An Education – still slightly ill with a cold and bored to death with no internet connection (I discovered to my horror in recent days that I, too, might be suffering from a slight case of online addiction!) I’m clearing my list of un-watched movies bit by bit and came across this one. I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised by this romantic coming-of-age story... well, more of a cautionary tale... about a teenage girl falling for a charming petty criminal. Carry Mulligan was fabulous (and really did look all of 16), as was Peter Starsgaard (I thought they had misspelled his name in the credits, but it turns out he's not related to the famous Swedish acting family), who brought all the charm and charisma needed for this role (and reminded me of Ewan McGregor at every turn). On top of everything, this was a lovely period piece set in the 60ies without turning too much hippie-and-freedom, despite the story of an older man seducing a young girl, which spoke of freedom of choice about who you want to be with despite social conventions.
The whole plot was handled skilfully and delicately and I found it realistic without being sappy and over-the-top. It was foreseeable that there would be a twist somewhere. The only thing that chaffed a bit was the moral preaching at the end, which turned this into more of a cautionary tale clearly intended for young women.
Anyway, well done, not too boring, lovely acting, realistic and touching romance of the kind that every girl wants to have (apart from the final bit). Not sure who I would recommend this film for, though, despite it (surprisingly) not being an utter waste of time.

The Descendants – I never really wanted to watch this but it was the only movie on my tablet and I had time to kill on the night train to my new life. I am very sorry to say that I completely underestimated this film. It’s so much more than a throw-away. I was surprised by this heart-felt and soulful family drama. George Clooney absolutely blew me away. He was fantastic, giving a moving, honest performance without growing too sappy. You could really believe his helpless confusion about what to do, how to react to the situation, deal with his kids,... But he managed to walk that line between ridiculously sappy and businesslike distance (makes me think of how spectacularly Ben Affleck failed in Gone Girl... Clooney definitely doesn’t fail). The kids were also great. The film was well-shot and lit to perfection, with a vibrant colour pallet, making it visually very pleasing, too. The soundtrack took a bit of getting used to, but underlined the emotion beautifully in the right places. I like this film for its understated drama, despite the serious topic. Good one.
PS: I thought I had misheard, but apparently there really was a King Kamehameha in Hawaii! I thought they were just making hidden Dragonball Z in-jokes

High strung
– This teen drama about a dancer and a violinist is so generic it’s ridiculous, but still somehow gripping. The dialogue is so run-off-the-mill and poorly written you might just as well turn it off. The whole film lives and dies with the editing, which does make the dance scenes better than in most films. But the acting is horrible. The whole thing feels like a non-stop music video. It turned truly ridiculous when they had a dance-off in the tube... The main actress looks like a lifeless doll and the violinist like someone picked purely because his face looks like he could model for anything from Lagerfeld to H&M.
The violin dubstep ala Lindsey Stirling was good, though (but that’s because I like this kind of music). I would also love to be able to dance, but even 2 years of courses couldn’t teach me a thing

Sully – I thought this biopic/drama about the aeroplane captain who landed on the Hudson river was well-made, and within a reasonable run-time of 95 minutes. If this had been made by Peter Jackson, they would just have extended the 208 seconds across a 3-h-film, possibly two. I read a lot of moaning about this film, but I found it really touching and quite refreshing due to the unconventional approach from the other side, showing the story behind the headline. Tom Hanks was brilliant as always. Even though I’ve only seen Captain Sullenberger in a few interview clips, I can see how Hanks studies him and got into the character 100%. I also loved Aaron Eckhart and the supporting cast. Everybody did a great job!
All in all, a good drama. I really enjoyed that they didn’t do any of the things one would expect from material like this. That alone makes the film stand out, almost like a documentary.

The girl on the train – This crime thriller about a cheating husband turned out to be not so thrilling. In fact, it bored me after 15 minutes. I was annoyed by the misuse of slomo, giving the film a bad start already. Also, it’s hard to feel for a protagonist who comes across as a crazy drunk from the very first moment, not matter how the story turns out in the end. I can’t deny that the acting was great (love Justin Theroux, though he does seem to get typecast), but the script seemed more like a play than a film. I didn’t enjoy it.

The Legend of Tarzan” – I expected this to be a cheesy, warmed-over action movie version of the Disney film and all other incarnations, something trashy and undemanding to watch. So, like it often turns out when you walk into something with zero expectations, I was pleasantly surprised to find this a decent film for a one-time viewing. Yes, the visuals were sloppy and uninspired, with terribly rendered apes and atrociously obvious green-screen. The sets and costumes also seemed made with utilitarian and economic aspects in mind instead of care and passion (They overlooked details like: How is Tarzan beardless in the jungle, when his hair is all matted dreadlocks?). But the actors did their best not to let this become a total travesty and the script helped, being actually quite refreshing for the first 35 minutes or so until you realise this is not quite the re-make film you thought it was, though the memories telling the famous backstory appeared at completely random moments and disrupted the flow of the story in the typical David Yates manner, which makes sense, looking back (I didn’t know he was attached.) I NEVER would have expected David Yates to be the director of this. How could he mess up the Harry Potter movies so badly when he can deliver at an ok (but no more than that) standard here? Also, according to IMDB, Yates wanted Alexander Skarsgard: “The Tarzan in my head was tall and vertical and had real length. I love Alex's verticality, his poise, his grace. It was always Alex for me.” In other words, Yates didn’t want a drunk or dead person – someone horizontal – to play the part. What a great director! Epic facepalm.
Finally, lovely score, again by Rupert Gregson-Williams who seems to be taking over from his brother left and right. I also loved the song by Hozier.
So, utterly forgettable but doesn’t feel like a complete waste of time to watch once, if you’re in the mood. Alexander Skarsgard certainly is eye candy for everyone (I kind of pity him, actually, because you can see how serious he takes this particular job, poor guy.)


Ok, did some reading, too. I'm trying to go through all my accumulated David Gemmells and also read...

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Wow, this book was vomit-inducingly terribly. If it were a fanfic instead of a book that somebody paid actual money for, I would have ditched it after the second scene. J.K. has some nerve having her name printed in huge letters on the cover when this mess is not even her crime, but some cheesy, badly-written, cliché-filled piece of fanfic. The characters were unstable and annoying with both kids and adults acting far beyond their age and completely out of character. The dialogue was so cringe-worthy in places that I wanted to throw the book at the wall, and the overall plot… I felt like I had read fanfics like this one a hundred times, but also done a hundred times better. The plot certainly had the potential to become a half-way decent, 1000 page fanfic, but only in the hands of a good writer with a grasp of the characters. I did my best to visualise the scenes, but it was useless. They just moved too far beyond the source material.
I can’t believe how horrible this book was! And the stage instructions! How would it even be possible to put something like this in a theatre?? I’m just floored at the overall horrendously poor quality of this piece of "literature". *shakes head*

Meanwhile, David Gemmell’s ”King beyond the gate” is shaping up to be every bit as brilliant as I remember it.

Westworld - Binged-watched this while ill with a cold in London, trying out my new bed at length. Visually impressive with fantastic acting and a story that had just the right amount of mystery without being frustrating. The pacing was a bit fast at times and some of the turns predictable, but all in all a thought-provoking series somewhere between "The Matrix" and any philosophical human rights AI movie.

Sherlock Season 4 - Any thoughts on the finale? It felt awfully like an ending to the series, like they are not at all sure if there's going to be another one... But at least, they wrapped it up nicely for all the shippers out there (no matter the pairing. Sherlolly, Mystrade, Johnlock... everybody got their finale). All in all, better than last season, for the most part, with a number of genuinely beautiful and emotional moments, but still nowhere near the level of the first two season - and the writers have clearly realised that because they composed what was very clearly an ending to the series. It's not officially over yet, but it might as well be, and though the last episode was mostly bullshit, turning the characters on their heads and doing frustratingly generic, stupid stuff, it did pull off the impossible: It verified Johnlock AND Sherlolly AND Mystrade (and probably a ton of other ships I didn't catch) all at the same time while still keeping it platonic. They tried very hard to make everybody happy, especially the Johnlockers, without coming right out and being explicit, and I felt that was very generous and well-done. The episode received a lot of hate on the net for not being explicitly Johnlock, but I actually think they needn't have been any more obvious. It was quite clear that they are a couple now, in this incarnation. They are raising a child together, for godssake! I'm very grateful that they didn't end this like "House MD", stringing the fans along for years and then leaving them completely empty-handed. The only worry I have is what will happen if the DO continue this, because then they will have to follow through... That could be a huge deterrent to any follow-up season.

deviantID

heidinanookie
Heidi Hinterbauer
Artist | Hobbyist | Photography
Austria
Current Residence: at home;)
Favourite genre of music: Pop, epic soundtracks
Favourite style of art: Realistic stuff... but also manga / animé
Favourite cartoon character: Gary... the snail... :D and Subaru Sumeragi
Personal Quote: Bob Ross once said "Every tree needs a friend." I stick to that.
Interests

Activity


  • Listening to: Amber Run "5 AM", Dario Marianelli "Jane Eyre OST"
  • Reading: "Mrs. Fry's Diary" Stephen Fry
  • Watching: QI XL (N-series) (Got access to BBC iPlayer here!)
  • Playing: Bejewelled
  • Eating: frozen pizza and chocolate biscuits
  • Drinking: roibush tea
High time for an update with some big news: I am realizing my biggest dream and have moved to the UK, more precisely to London! After a fulminate application process at a food product development company, I moved during January and completed my move this week end, bringing my car and my things. Work starts on Wednesday.
The sad thing is: I don't feel like I'm living my dream at all. I worried so much about things going wrong that I had no time to enjoy it and the homely feeling that was always present whenever I came here has somehow, somewhere evaporated. I just hope I'm not making a big mistake because my intuition has deserted me (I neither feel bad, nor good about this move... and the latter is a worry in itself). It's really depressing to get to do all the things you always wanted to do - I got to drive off in my car, not stopping (figuratively) until I was here, something I've day-dreamed about doing countless times; I get to call this island "home" now. I even managed to juggle things in a way that makes me able to be in London, of all places! - and not feel it. Or rather, it feels like another business project, executed to perfection down the the smallest detail, but without much emotion. It's not even like I've come here and woken up to discover reality is much bleaker than my dreams. I'm not disappointed by the situation or anything - except in myself for not enjoying this more. This is a once-in-a-lifetime even. I don't think I'll ever be moving to the UK a second time. This is it - and it's passing me by, pretty much like my graduation, which I also couldn't enjoy because I had things to worry about. I'm not precisely worried now, but I'm missing that giddy, ecstatic feeling I'd expect to be experiencing right now. Sure, there have been glimpses of that feeling, but only briefly. Right now, I hope that I'll get back in touch with things when I know what to expect at work and that I guess that I will fall in love with England all over again come Spring...

The great Gatsby – I suddenly felt like watching this drama about the dark side of the American dream, so I did The acting was decent, but not that much room to unfold a performance. I haven’t seen Toby Maguire in anything significant in ages, but he was ok here. Leo DiCaprio didn’t seem like he was acting all that much, which is a sign of quality, I guess.
I have never read the book, but I guess it was a good script adaptation insofar that the story made sense and seemed comprehensive without any gaps. That’s rare in a literature adaptation, I find. But lot of the scenes would have looked better in a play. Indeed, this would be great in a theatre with a minimal cast.
The visual side of things was utterly disappointing. The green screen and CGI work was, frankly, atrocious. The lighting was terribly artificial, too. I didn’t not expect this kind of movie to have such a high percentage of computer-generated footage and stuff. It made the whole thing look not very well-made.
On the plus side, the music was great. Bold soundtrack, gorgeous score, but they could have given the songs more time to play out and generate an atmosphere – because that’s what this film was missing a little. Though it was perfectly paced, it didn’t draw me in emotionally.

The talented Mr. Ripley“ – I had never seen this one so I watched it with a friend. I don’t quite understand why I should feel for a psychopathic killer, though. At first, I had difficulty pinpointing where the story was going. Also, it was hard to discern the main character’s initial motivations. After that it was just chaos. I do give them credit for winding the thriller tighter and tighter, even when you think it can’t get any worse. But then again, it becomes all too predictable in the end and the main character loses all coherency.
Jude Law was good as the sleek, despicable playboy. Matt Damon also did a great job, especially with the scene where he frightens off Gwyneth Paltrow’s character. But all in all, I don’t really see what’s supposed to be so remarkable about this film. Its message is one we know: Don’t kill people – it never ends well. Anyway, ok film. And I thought it would be something like three hours, but it’s really just two ten. (Again: good pacing! Never boring, never rushed.)

Ondine” (2009) – Oh, this was a lovely film! I never thought I’d watch it because it just didn’t sound very promising when a friend dropped it off for me ages ago, but that night, it was the first item on my list that caught my eye and I liked it after 20 seconds of the trailer, so there.
So, a cute story about a girl fished from the ocean by an Irish fisherman. The mystical elements were expertly woven into it (and not entirely resolved by the ending, IMO) and it had a very dramatic and gut-twisting turn for the finale. Though the tag line sounds cheesy, the story did not seem generic at all.
The acting was delicious. Alison Barry is a revelation, expertly delivering her lines and bringing across that wise, little girl perfectly. Colin Farrell with his greasy, grey-streaked hair was also great (though they could tone down the eye liner a bit). By now, I appreciate his proficiency. Everyone else was marvellous, too.
On top of that, the Irish landscape played an important role. It was breath-takingly atmospheric and mystical... great choice for lighting and colour palette. It really added that special feeling, so kudos to the cinematographer.
Finally, there’s the soundtrack with hauntingly simple tunes and some Sigur Ros, for good measure. I immediately recognised it and was thrilled – and then it was even named in the film, playing and important role. What was fantastic was that this kind of music fits perfectly with those kinds of pictures.
All in all, a gripping film with stunning visuals, great atmosphere and a good story. Definitely a recommendation!

Jane Eyre“ (2011) – Found this on my HD and the trailer looked surprisingly intriguing, so I sat down for this Victorian classic. A good film! Of course, the story and the characters are a bit bewildering to the modern audience, but it’s good thought exercise to imagine how life would have been back then. It must have been incredibly hard and uncomfortable and I’m grateful for living in one of the most advanced countries in the world today, where a situation like this one would not ever appear.
Anyway, I’m rambling. So: on to the movie. The acting was fantastic. This was the first film with Michael Fassbender where I really go the chance to enjoy his acting. Mia W. was also delightfully Victorian. Jamie Bell was lovely too. I don't see enough of him. All parts were cast very well.
Visually, this was also stunning. I could find no flaws in the exquisite costumes, the incredible sets, the natural-looking lighting etc. A very well-made film with conventional editing, good pacing and a moving score.
Ok, I’m too tired now to think of more things to say.

The Interpreter” - Very good political thriller about a UN interpreter who overhears something she shouldn’t. I have to confess, the finer plot points went over my head because it all seemed very convoluted and confusing. But I hope I got the gist of it, mostly the warring concepts of right and wrong in the name of the greater good.
In any case, it was a very gripping movie. Kidman and Penn have excellent chemistry here and everybody delivers great performances. Also, looking at their blue eyes, I’m reminded that we are distant relatives (all blue-eyed people have a common ancestor some 6000 years back), which is a cool thought.
From a technical point of view, this was also well-made, though I think they could have put a bit more thought into FBI and Secret Service work because I don’t believe things really work like that...
Anyway, good film. Maybe I’ll get the details watching it a second time.

"Ocean's Eleven" (George Clooney version) - This was on TV one night and I watched it with my mom for the up-teenth time. Still a great movie, roaringly funny. One thing that endears it to me especially is that nobody really gets hurt.

Good Will Hunting” – I think I saw bits and pieces of this over the years on TV, but somehow those left a completely wrong impression and I never got around to watching this start to finish. I’m glad I did it now. This drama about a maths genius kid was really good, with a complex, but strangely likeable protagonist and straightforward, perfectly-paced story telling. I liked the depth of all the characters. They all seemed very human without becoming overly dramatic or cliché.
Good acting, too, though a few ad-libbed scenes were obviously included. I really like that they got Robin Williams and Stellan Skarsgård on board for this and it goes without saying that I love Matt Damon (and Ben Affleck as well).
Sets were obviously small, but effective. It looks like this movie worked on a budget, but they did the best they could, achieving a very gritty 90ies look, almost like a time document.
The score was a complete mess. I’ve never heard anything like it. It sounded like Danny Elfman put two or even three separate pieces of music on top of each other.
All in all, a very well-written piece of work from start to finish, with deep characters and fantastic dialogue, great banter and wit. And an ending I can really live with.

"Swiss Army Man" - After all the conflicting reviews about this, I went to the cinema with a friend to form my own opinion. It was not a terrible movie. There actually were some pretty funny moments, but I discovered that I found a lot of things hilarious that didn't make anybody else in the auditorium laugh... Awkward!! (It was mostly puns, which, I guess, the audience of non-native-speakers just didn't get.) And the fart humour was not that cringe-worthy (or even as copious) as I expected. The acting was nothing to write home about, though I have to hand it to Dan Radcliffe again that he manages to NOT remind me in any way of Harry Potter. The plot itself was full of illogical silliness. I also sense a bigger metaphor hidden in here. In fact, the whole movie - especially with that weird ending - feels like an allegory on life or something, but it was too well-disguised for me to make complete sense of it. Ah, and I greatly disliked the score.
Anyway, not a film to write home about, but I don't regret watching it, either.
Oh yes, and it was pretty much "what the hell" all the way through.

Three-hour-fan-edit of "The Hobbit". On the one hand, I have to say the cutting down of these three movies to one long film succeeded in seriously condensing the story telling, taking out more or less all of the boring bits and stretches, the nonsense about Radagast, the White Council, battles and so forth, while adding selected, yet important, bits from the extended version. On the other hand, this format shows up the inconsistencies and flaws in the original script and mistakes in directing, either because of the numerous original faults in the writing, or because the original cut just plain stretched so long across one scene that you had forgotten the beginning by its end, thereby covering up those mistakes that become noticeable here. In the edit, some aspects become downright nonsensical, like the crucial decision of Bilbo's to accompany the dwarfs, after all. To be fair, that and other things were handled better in the long version. The character developments suffer seriously, at least where they were noticeable before, namely with Bilbo and Thorin. Most actions become unexplained, motives remain hidden.
It’s lovely that Bilbo seems to be truly the center of this version of the movie. However, it makes all the dwarves look like slobs. Bilbo does ALL the work. And I mean ALL of it. They would be utterly helpless without him. Let’s recount, shall we: killed by trolls before even reaching the Misty Mountains, taken captive unawares in the goblin cave and likely killed in their sleep, butchered by Beorn, drowned in the Enchanted River, eaten by giant spiders, left to rot by Thranduil, incarcerated by the Major of Laketown, not able to find the ladder to the postern gate in time, not able to find the key hole,... They are utterly useless and would have given up long ago if not for Bilbo.
I also love the portrayal of Bilbo as a strong, intelligent, independent character. He’s the only one showing some sense.
This was an impressive, yet sad demonstration of how even the editing can’t save a terrible script. This had some gems, but they all came from Tolkien or Martin Freeman himself. Thought I have to say, the most iconic lines were tragically wasted. So, I'm not completely happy with this version, either. As a reader of the book, I would say it's more of a chapter-by-chapter moving illustration, little scenes that have difficulty finding a red thread of connection, a binding arch that can draw you in emotionally. But it makes me want to read the book again.
PS: the one thing (besides casting Martin Freeman as Bilbo) they got indisputably right in this movie was Smaug. Even in 2D he was still creepy as hell, a children's book dragon, grown up.

"Doctor Strange" - Saw it in 3D (no cheaper version available) but it was worth it. I don't know the comics, but this seemed like a pretty well-made film, all things considered. The plot was tight enough not to make the 130 min. runtime boring (there was only one philosophical speech scene and one fight scene that could have done with trimming). I feel here is some wasted potential for a bit more emo-drama, eg. like in IronMan 3. Benedict Cumberbatch was a perfect choice and he did a lovely job with all those emotions and the hero's journey. To be honest, though, the way the character was written, he did remind me strongly of Sherlock (with lots of Derek Shepard mixed in), with his arrogance and quips, and they certainly put in a few reminders (most notably, flipping up his collar, but other things too). There were some hilarious one-liners. The acting was good on all parts, actually, but I expected nothing less. Tilda Swinton was unexpectedly quirky. I did not anticipate that in this role.
Visually, this was masterfully done by all rules of the trade. The CGI and visual effects were flawless. I absolutely loved the sparks-and-embers effect of the portal magic and the bended reality scenes came across stunning in 3D. I couldn't spot a single flaw in the animations. However, there were one or two instances with flawed directing (or editing. Not sure what caused the inconsistencies), eg. Dr. Strange operating without mask (what the hell??) and then suddenly everybody's wearing masks after the dialogues concluded. The fight scenes also were beautifully choreographed. Cumberbatch certainly is up to the physical side of things, too.
The score didn't blow me away, but it added to the mix.
Oh, and good make-up and costumes, though they overdid it a bit with the scar tissue on Dr. Strange's hands.
Anyway, all in all an enjoyable ride. 4/5. Looking forward to seeing this again, if possible as a director's cut.
Oh, and about half the theatre walked out before the after-credits scene. What n00bs.
PS: Now I can't wait to read some Sherlock/Doctor Strange crossover fanfics!!

"Saint Amour" - watched this with mom and one of her friends at the cinema. Strange little French road movie about a French farmer trying to connect with his son. The plot turned into some metaphor about love and sex, parenthood, the journey through life and whatnot. I didn't really enjoy it. Not my kind of humour, either. To be fair, the acting was quite good.

"Wüstenblume" (Desert Flower) - Watched this biopic drama on Netflix due to nothing better to do. It's about a Somali woman emigrating to London and becoming a supermodel - and the first advocate against female genital mutilation. It's a very strong story with decent acting (Timothy Spall is absolutely brilliant as portly, slightly dishevelled star photographer with a sensitive heart) and a moving soundtrack, shot mostly on-location. Despite the heavy message (and sometimes unexpectedly disturbing footage), it was well-made, and this topic deserves attention, especially in this day and age, because backward "traditions" like this one are just one of the most obvious signs of inequality between men and women.

"Star Trek - Beyond" - Got this from the video rental store after having waited for ages. Despite the nutty concept (I mean, clearly, somebody watched too much Mars Attacks, and also had their imagination run amok in other ways), this turned out to be quite an engaging film. Had me glued to the screen, leaning forward in my seat through most of it (less because of the plot, though. It was more of a scene-by-scene tension. At some point, I though "what? This is all the plot is about? That's terribly generic."). I love the banter and the camaraderie, the comfortable friendships. Very endearing. It also had some genuinely hilarious moments that had me really laughing hard, and some very good, profound one-liners. Furthermore, I can see that this would have looked great in 3D.
The script had a bit of a disjointed feeling, like somebody had written it, saying "Guys, wouldn't it be cool if they did this?" or "That's going to make a great frame. How can we get them there?" and then they joined those scenes together. Like Monty Python's Holy Grail, only less funny. The editing was rigorous, obviously getting rid of some of the linking moments that would have made this feel more like a whole, but that cut down on runtime, which made the movie a reasonable length of just under two hours.
The acting was mostly good. It's always nice to feel that people are having fun on set. Karl Urban had a few lines where the delivery was too strong and stilted, but seemed to settle into it after a bit, too. The human side of Spock is lovely to see, Zachary Quinto does a great job there (and why can't he just make "lots of Vulcan babies" with Uhura?? I have the feeling that's kind of the conclusion he arrives at in the end, too ). Chris Pine is beginning to infuse Kirk with the necessary gravitas, too.
The visuals were a bit too computer-based for me. I mean, the original series (and most of the follow-ups) did either "real" effects or tried to avoid CGI. I think that was the right idea. Too much visual opulence is kind of distracting.
Ok, this review is really unstructured, but I liked the film. It was solid entertainment and I'm still not tired of the reboot, but hungry for more.
PS: watched the DVD extras and am appalled by how tacked-on the bit about Anton looks. They don't even explain why it's there.

"Captain America: Civil War" - I guess this was decent entertainment as far as action films go, but it lacked soul (slightly better than Winter Soldier, though). It's getting a bit old that Cap and Bucky are alternatively trying to kill and not-kill each other. Also, these movies are getting too full of characters. The need to give everybody room to unfold is one explanation for the run-time. I think they could have used that editor from Star Trek, though, who would have managed to keep this epic reasonably short and snappy, because honestly, this draaaged. After about half of it, my attention began to drift, especially since, though the script was alright, I got confused by the finer plot points once again. Ultimately, I'm totally on Tony's side, though, and I love that they took up the issue of collateral damage as the main point of this movie. All the destruction and death these "saviours" bring has been bothering me for quite some time and I'm glad they address this. I especially like how immediate this problem feels to Tony and I love how they continue to explore his human nature here, and the depths of his guilty conscience. I would have liked to learn more about him and Pepper splitting up. That added even more to his puppy-dog sadness. He remains the most interesting character of them all.
So, the plot was a bit lengthy, the twist came at a point where I just couldn't be bothered to care any more. But the acting was flawless. They are really losing someone perfect with RDJ (I think this was his last Marvel film). I've even grown used to Vision (I love Paul Bettany, but he didn't seem the right choice in Age of Ultron). I adored Daniel Brühl and Martin Freeman. The funny thing is, Daniel had a major part and only appeared in the credits as an afterthought. Martin didn't seem all that different from John Watson in military mode, which was kind of distracting.
The visuals were mostly good, though there were some over-the-top designs. Most obvious example: those nutty prison arrangements. CGI is getting so good you can't even see it any more. However, in the DVD extras, I learned that they also had a lot of epic practical effects and I thought those were buried underneath the flood of CGI so that you can't really appreciate how awesome they are any more because you can't tell them apart.
I barely noticed the score, but there was one song in the soundtrack: "Left hand free" by Alt-J is, hands down, my favourite from the band and it brings just the right groove to the screen. Great choice!
So, all in all, entertaining, but not really captivating. I had no problem disengaging from the screen a few times to go somewhere.

"La Famille Bélier" - My mom got this little French feel-good coming-of-age movie for Christmas. At first I didn't want to watch this film about a hearing girl with a singing gift in a deaf farmer's family, but the singing caught my ear. This was a well-acted movie with a good, if predictable story. I think it's a bit sad to handle a sensitive and important topic like this kind of disability in such a generic way, but you have to start somewhere. 

Primer – This sifi drama? Thriller? Mystery? about two guys building a kind of time machine in their garage went a little over my head. Think “Inception” but REALLY complicated, mixed with “Prestige”. Beyond the overall plot concept, I didn’t grasp any of the finer points of what happened.
The actors were decent. The whole production looked home-made, but in a good way with minimal budget, sort of a down-sized version of “Moon”.
So, maybe I’ll get this if I watch it again. Maybe I’ll understand it with the use of subtitles. As it stands, I can’t really say much else about this film apart from that the score was lovely.

Mr. Holmes – What a beautiful movie about an ageing Sherlock Holmes struggling with dementia, outstandingly played by Ian McKellen. His performance gave heart and depth to an aloof character, showing a realistic picture of old age. In fact, his Holmes reminded me a lot of my granddad, who is 93. In Milo Parker, he had a shining co-star as his young friend Roger. I thoroughly enjoyed his lively and enthusiastic performance, which still had a subtle edge to it that spoke of a mature actor. All other supporting roles were also flawlessly cast, though I’m a bit sad we didn’t actually get to see Watson. Then again, I suppose this film was all about Holmes and it was certainly a conscious decision to exclude the doctor.
The movie was beautifully made, with gorgeous shot compositions – a painting each, wonderful colours and pictures of the English countryside. The costumes were flawless and elegant, perfectly capturing the Victorian era at the turn of the century and onwards. Together with a soft score by Carter Burwell, it made both a romantic and melancholic picture, entirely about having to let go of the past while still trying to hold on.
So, a touching piece of work that lives off the acting of McKellen and Parker. The duo are a delight to watch, sticking their heads together like a pair of school boys while the mother stands in the background, scowling.

An Education – still slightly ill with a cold and bored to death with no internet connection (I discovered to my horror in recent days that I, too, might be suffering from a slight case of online addiction!) I’m clearing my list of un-watched movies bit by bit and came across this one. I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised by this romantic coming-of-age story... well, more of a cautionary tale... about a teenage girl falling for a charming petty criminal. Carry Mulligan was fabulous (and really did look all of 16), as was Peter Starsgaard (I thought they had misspelled his name in the credits, but it turns out he's not related to the famous Swedish acting family), who brought all the charm and charisma needed for this role (and reminded me of Ewan McGregor at every turn). On top of everything, this was a lovely period piece set in the 60ies without turning too much hippie-and-freedom, despite the story of an older man seducing a young girl, which spoke of freedom of choice about who you want to be with despite social conventions.
The whole plot was handled skilfully and delicately and I found it realistic without being sappy and over-the-top. It was foreseeable that there would be a twist somewhere. The only thing that chaffed a bit was the moral preaching at the end, which turned this into more of a cautionary tale clearly intended for young women.
Anyway, well done, not too boring, lovely acting, realistic and touching romance of the kind that every girl wants to have (apart from the final bit). Not sure who I would recommend this film for, though, despite it (surprisingly) not being an utter waste of time.

The Descendants – I never really wanted to watch this but it was the only movie on my tablet and I had time to kill on the night train to my new life. I am very sorry to say that I completely underestimated this film. It’s so much more than a throw-away. I was surprised by this heart-felt and soulful family drama. George Clooney absolutely blew me away. He was fantastic, giving a moving, honest performance without growing too sappy. You could really believe his helpless confusion about what to do, how to react to the situation, deal with his kids,... But he managed to walk that line between ridiculously sappy and businesslike distance (makes me think of how spectacularly Ben Affleck failed in Gone Girl... Clooney definitely doesn’t fail). The kids were also great. The film was well-shot and lit to perfection, with a vibrant colour pallet, making it visually very pleasing, too. The soundtrack took a bit of getting used to, but underlined the emotion beautifully in the right places. I like this film for its understated drama, despite the serious topic. Good one.
PS: I thought I had misheard, but apparently there really was a King Kamehameha in Hawaii! I thought they were just making hidden Dragonball Z in-jokes

High strung
– This teen drama about a dancer and a violinist is so generic it’s ridiculous, but still somehow gripping. The dialogue is so run-off-the-mill and poorly written you might just as well turn it off. The whole film lives and dies with the editing, which does make the dance scenes better than in most films. But the acting is horrible. The whole thing feels like a non-stop music video. It turned truly ridiculous when they had a dance-off in the tube... The main actress looks like a lifeless doll and the violinist like someone picked purely because his face looks like he could model for anything from Lagerfeld to H&M.
The violin dubstep ala Lindsey Stirling was good, though (but that’s because I like this kind of music). I would also love to be able to dance, but even 2 years of courses couldn’t teach me a thing

Sully – I thought this biopic/drama about the aeroplane captain who landed on the Hudson river was well-made, and within a reasonable run-time of 95 minutes. If this had been made by Peter Jackson, they would just have extended the 208 seconds across a 3-h-film, possibly two. I read a lot of moaning about this film, but I found it really touching and quite refreshing due to the unconventional approach from the other side, showing the story behind the headline. Tom Hanks was brilliant as always. Even though I’ve only seen Captain Sullenberger in a few interview clips, I can see how Hanks studies him and got into the character 100%. I also loved Aaron Eckhart and the supporting cast. Everybody did a great job!
All in all, a good drama. I really enjoyed that they didn’t do any of the things one would expect from material like this. That alone makes the film stand out, almost like a documentary.

The girl on the train – This crime thriller about a cheating husband turned out to be not so thrilling. In fact, it bored me after 15 minutes. I was annoyed by the misuse of slomo, giving the film a bad start already. Also, it’s hard to feel for a protagonist who comes across as a crazy drunk from the very first moment, not matter how the story turns out in the end. I can’t deny that the acting was great (love Justin Theroux, though he does seem to get typecast), but the script seemed more like a play than a film. I didn’t enjoy it.

The Legend of Tarzan” – I expected this to be a cheesy, warmed-over action movie version of the Disney film and all other incarnations, something trashy and undemanding to watch. So, like it often turns out when you walk into something with zero expectations, I was pleasantly surprised to find this a decent film for a one-time viewing. Yes, the visuals were sloppy and uninspired, with terribly rendered apes and atrociously obvious green-screen. The sets and costumes also seemed made with utilitarian and economic aspects in mind instead of care and passion (They overlooked details like: How is Tarzan beardless in the jungle, when his hair is all matted dreadlocks?). But the actors did their best not to let this become a total travesty and the script helped, being actually quite refreshing for the first 35 minutes or so until you realise this is not quite the re-make film you thought it was, though the memories telling the famous backstory appeared at completely random moments and disrupted the flow of the story in the typical David Yates manner, which makes sense, looking back (I didn’t know he was attached.) I NEVER would have expected David Yates to be the director of this. How could he mess up the Harry Potter movies so badly when he can deliver at an ok (but no more than that) standard here? Also, according to IMDB, Yates wanted Alexander Skarsgard: “The Tarzan in my head was tall and vertical and had real length. I love Alex's verticality, his poise, his grace. It was always Alex for me.” In other words, Yates didn’t want a drunk or dead person – someone horizontal – to play the part. What a great director! Epic facepalm.
Finally, lovely score, again by Rupert Gregson-Williams who seems to be taking over from his brother left and right. I also loved the song by Hozier.
So, utterly forgettable but doesn’t feel like a complete waste of time to watch once, if you’re in the mood. Alexander Skarsgard certainly is eye candy for everyone (I kind of pity him, actually, because you can see how serious he takes this particular job, poor guy.)


Ok, did some reading, too. I'm trying to go through all my accumulated David Gemmells and also read...

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Wow, this book was vomit-inducingly terribly. If it were a fanfic instead of a book that somebody paid actual money for, I would have ditched it after the second scene. J.K. has some nerve having her name printed in huge letters on the cover when this mess is not even her crime, but some cheesy, badly-written, cliché-filled piece of fanfic. The characters were unstable and annoying with both kids and adults acting far beyond their age and completely out of character. The dialogue was so cringe-worthy in places that I wanted to throw the book at the wall, and the overall plot… I felt like I had read fanfics like this one a hundred times, but also done a hundred times better. The plot certainly had the potential to become a half-way decent, 1000 page fanfic, but only in the hands of a good writer with a grasp of the characters. I did my best to visualise the scenes, but it was useless. They just moved too far beyond the source material.
I can’t believe how horrible this book was! And the stage instructions! How would it even be possible to put something like this in a theatre?? I’m just floored at the overall horrendously poor quality of this piece of "literature". *shakes head*

Meanwhile, David Gemmell’s ”King beyond the gate” is shaping up to be every bit as brilliant as I remember it.

Westworld - Binged-watched this while ill with a cold in London, trying out my new bed at length. Visually impressive with fantastic acting and a story that had just the right amount of mystery without being frustrating. The pacing was a bit fast at times and some of the turns predictable, but all in all a thought-provoking series somewhere between "The Matrix" and any philosophical human rights AI movie.

Sherlock Season 4 - Any thoughts on the finale? It felt awfully like an ending to the series, like they are not at all sure if there's going to be another one... But at least, they wrapped it up nicely for all the shippers out there (no matter the pairing. Sherlolly, Mystrade, Johnlock... everybody got their finale). All in all, better than last season, for the most part, with a number of genuinely beautiful and emotional moments, but still nowhere near the level of the first two season - and the writers have clearly realised that because they composed what was very clearly an ending to the series. It's not officially over yet, but it might as well be, and though the last episode was mostly bullshit, turning the characters on their heads and doing frustratingly generic, stupid stuff, it did pull off the impossible: It verified Johnlock AND Sherlolly AND Mystrade (and probably a ton of other ships I didn't catch) all at the same time while still keeping it platonic. They tried very hard to make everybody happy, especially the Johnlockers, without coming right out and being explicit, and I felt that was very generous and well-done. The episode received a lot of hate on the net for not being explicitly Johnlock, but I actually think they needn't have been any more obvious. It was quite clear that they are a couple now, in this incarnation. They are raising a child together, for godssake! I'm very grateful that they didn't end this like "House MD", stringing the fans along for years and then leaving them completely empty-handed. The only worry I have is what will happen if the DO continue this, because then they will have to follow through... That could be a huge deterrent to any follow-up season.
Title: About Time

Word count: 4000

Author: Heidi

Fandom: Sherlock (BBC)

Rating: free

Characters: Sherlock Holmes, John Watson

Disclaimer: We are all aware that "Sherlock" is not mine.

Summary: This is a story about time: time spent grieving, waiting, coming to terms with what has happened. Time stopping. Time moving forward. John has lost his best friend, but it takes him a while to understand why his grief is so much deeper than that.



 About time




0



The Reichenbach case is your biggest challenge yet as Moriarty twists the knife deeper and deeper. It ends with your best friend on the roof of St. Bart’s and you on the pavement, staring up at him, your eyes following his tumbling form, the flapping coat tails like wings. You hear the thud of a body hitting the ground, just before you hit the blacktop yourself. You get up again. There are people. Sherlock, on the ground. Half-open, sightless blue eyes framed by blood-matted curls. There is no pulse. Sherlock Holmes is dead. The time is 3:42 pm.




*~*~*



1



The time you spend waiting is probably the worst. Every minute of every hour is filled with endless seconds of love that flow like blood from a wound, draining from your soul, useless and dripping nothing but pain. You miss him more with every contraction of your bursting heart, full to the brim with the things you didn’t say when you still had the chance.

You wait for a miracle, for things to get better, for dawn to appear on the horizon of this endless night, but nothing happens. You feel sunken into a well, with people moving above, going about their daily business, but no one can see you down here. You’re not sure if you’re waiting to be rescued or to drown.


*~*~*




2



The time you spend with the people who are left in your life – who life has left you – is agony. Harry feigns compassion when you know she’s secretly glad that this event has inevitably broken you from the gravity of his orbit, for good, it seems, to float away helplessly into the vast, chilled emptiness of space that is your existence.

Greg is too guilt-ridden to see far beyond his own grief, helpless to assist you as he himself struggles to stay afloat on the ocean of regret he finds himself on. He has tried to reach out, knowing that you have it so much worse than him, but your dimmed, lifeless presence adds to his burden until he can barely stand, so you avoid him to protect both of you.

Mycroft is an enigma, as always, cold and distant yet oddly subdued in the face of your anguish. Your lava-liquid anger towards him has solidified into black, hard basalt hatred. Still, you know he must be suffering, too, so you let go of your resentment as far as you can. There’s no point in sinking your leaking boat with more heavy emotion.

Mrs. Hudson is the only one who seems to grasp the nature of your feelings, so when she come to visit to share tears and tea, there is always a brief moment when you almost welcome her presence. She seems to sharpen the edge of your grief so its stabbing blade hurts less when it slides into your heart, the cuts deep and clean. You cling to each other, struggling for breath, treading water under the bridge with no way back upstream.


*~*~*




3



The time your clock measures, or your calendar, or your heartbeat, passes unnoticed, for now. Rationally, you know your life is moving on without you, that you should make something of your limited span on this rock hurtling through space but you can’t seem to find the energy to care.

You blink and it’s evening, another twenty-four hours have silently flown past you. If there was a dawn, you must have missed it. It doesn’t matter.


*~*~*




4



The time since you last saw him stretches painfully inside you. It feels like you are so much bigger within now, expanding involuntarily to accommodate your grief, like you are building a mind palace of your own inside yourself, all shaped out of sorrow and despair and filled to the roof with snow flakes made from frozen tears.

The corridors stretch, unlit, into the gloom with dark, unknown ends. Silence echoes in the halls and no light filters through the bricked-up windows. The whole complex is empty safe for a few grains of dust that bear his fingerprints, strewn like bread crumbs on the bare floors with ever expanding spaces in between them.

In the farthest corner, there is a closet which you try to keep locked at all times. It holds all of the memories of your glorious time together, with the emotions heaped on top in an untidy tangle. You never manage to properly shut the door, though, and the stacked-up boxes tumble out at the most inopportune moments.

One day you notice that the hidden feelings inside shine thought the cracks in the closet door, lighting up the space around it, and you run in fear of the light.


*~*~*




5



The time used on rationalising your feelings is never enough to reach a conclusion, or even begin to uncover the layers upon layers tucked away underneath each other like the growth rings of a millennial oak, stooped and bent like you, struck by lightning far too many times until it eventually split down to the roots, yet still clinging to life.

Most of the time, you don’t know why you even bother. What does it matter that you felt a warm wave of golden affection every time he looked at you? That you experienced the beginnings of something mysterious and searing every once in a while when the adrenalin wasn’t enough any more? Your boiling blood has cooled now, the burning centre at the heart of a wandering comet dimming to ash as the radiant core of your universe was gobbled up by the black hole of death, merciless, irreversible.

You tell yourself you shouldn’t be feeling this way. He was only your flatmate. Friend. But you are man enough to acknowledge that you do. Feel this way. Not knowing why is slowly driving you insane, so you worry away at the truth hovering on the edge of your conscious, the fringes of your galaxy.

You hope that understanding what you are grieving for will help you to find a substitute, a make-shift part to fill that space inside of you so you won’t have to be so damn careful all the time not to trip and fall head-long into its terrifying depths. A spare part, certainly not perfect, but fit to allow the machinery of your broken heart to work again, hitching and creaking, gears and wheels grinding laboriously on.


*~*~*




6



The time that follows a very important realisation flares up and burns like an arsonists’ masterpiece: You’ve chipped away at the truth, you’ve followed the bread crumbs, you’ve dared to grasp at the rays shining through the closet door and now you know. You know why your heart feels so broken that tears are dripping out at the seams no matter how many stitches you put in, why that cavity inside of you keeps growing like an undercutting in the endless, torrential rain that keeps falling now in your London.

Love.

It is so obvious that you discover new emotions blooming inside of you to battle the all-encompassing grief: Astonishment. Disbelief. Regret. Self-loathing. The days burn now with them, glow eerily in this new light. Eventually, the flames die down and beyond smoke and ashes lies the pearly-white gem of Acceptance.

You loved him in a way that was so deeply and profoundly rooted in you that it would have required you to step outside yourself to see it - like, indeed, so many outsiders did. The reason you hadn’t realised was that you were standing too close. With your nose pressed against the glass surface of the screen you couldn’t ever hope to see the whole picture, only tiny, coloured dots of light in red, blue and green. Staring at the sun, you were blinded to a universe of stars surrounding it. It took him dying for you to take the necessary steps backwards to widen your gaze.


*~*~*




7



The time you spend crying, now, is coloured by the prospect of resolution. The tears feel more like letting go of precious gems, fireflies released into the night sky or prayers set free to the wind, instead of adding to the sloshing flood that was drowning you, pulling you under relentlessly. You begin to cautiously hope that one day, you might even run out of salt water to spill down your cheeks onto your pillow, his pillow, Mrs. Hudson’s kind, old hands, the violin, the broken beakers on the counter, the black marble headstone marking his last resting place (this one only when no one can see you, in the dead of might).

You start to feel almost imperceptibly lighter. You wish he was still here so you could tell him. You want him to know that you’ve forgiven him, that you are grateful, that now you’ve realised the truth you will never stop loving him. Instead, you tell his tomb stone and are, inexplicably, almost certain that he can hear you.


*~*~*




8



The time between winter and spring feels filled with promise and anticipation. You have gotten through the darkest, coldest part and survived. Even though you were unable to figure out his heart, what moved him to do what he did, what you could have done to prevent it, you know now what moved your own heart back in those golden days, moves it still. In the end, forgiving him had been almost easy.

Now, you are on the verge of forgiving yourself. For not seeing, for not listening more closely to the things unspoken, things said only through the violin, for not trusting in that tiniest, crucial moment when he needed you most. Forgiving yourself doesn’t mean you won’t regret it to your dying breath, but you tell yourself to let it go.


*~*~*




9



Time stops when you open the door one day and see him standing there, back turned, coat and all, in the middle of your living room. You are shocked because you really had thought you were getting better - so much better, in fact, that you had returned to work some months ago. Apparently, you overestimated your brains’ potential to recover from trauma because what you are seeing can’t be real.

Anger follows, anger at yourself for not being stronger than this, for caving in after all, your foundations giving way and crumbling under the sustained strain of grief and regret. You press your lips together, blinking hard to dispel the ghost in your parlour and clear your vision of this hallucination. What angers you most is that this means you will not be fit to practice medicine, the one thing that has never failed to give you joy. A doctor slipping from reality is no good to anyone.

Your universe, tentatively re-kindled and carefully fed with little scraps of honeyed light, is on the verge of implosion yet again.


Then, the figment speaks. Your name, rough around the edges, broken in the middle, creased and worn like a well-used tissue after an accidental round in the washing machine, issues from those lips. Air rushes into your lungs. With a sharp lurch, reality snaps into focus again. A hysterical part of your brain screams that you are not losing your mind, after all, and how could you ever think otherwise. Things morph into another kind of shock, not the paralysing, defeating kind, but the energising sort that makes your muscles bunch and your ears roar with adrenalin. You give yourself another moment to gather enough saliva in your mouth to form words.

“Sherlock.” A combination of syllables you haven’t used in a long time. You swallow the unfamiliar taste. A muffled noise is heard as your briefcase drops from your hand as Sherlock turns around to face you. Your brain has forgotten about your fingers entirely. There is so much you want to say, words warring at the back of your throat, but you can’t decide which to let slip past your clenched jaw and pressed-together lips, so you say nothing more, just look, drinking in the appearance of the man in front of you.

Sherlock looks older, his hair long and in need of a good cut, framing a lined face with weary eyes that have seen too much. No, not lined. Scarred. At least some of them. He’s gazing at you, clearly waiting for more. From his hunched shoulders and bowed head you are guessing he might be expecting some for of violence from you. A few months ago, he might have been correct about that, but that was before... Before. It’s too much.

“I... I’m sorry,” you hear yourself say, mumbling “Sorry.” You blink and find your feet carrying you down the stairs to Mrs. Hudson’s door. You hear her before you knock, sniffling quietly in her flat. You conclude that she already knows. Placing your hand against the smooth wood, you rest your forehead against the cool surface, closing your eyes for a moment. You have no intention of going in, but you can’t go back upstairs right now, either, not with all the things you now know filling your insides like heavy, skin-warm gold coins, not with your emotions threatening to explode like a supernova behind your eyes.

You breathe, trying to focus on the one clear thought in this swirling mass: Whatever you’re feeling, whatever lies behind or before you, Sherlock is alive. That’s what counts right now. It also means you have suffered for nothing, have lost months of your life to such black despair that you never expected to come out at the other end at all.

Anger slowly rises to the surface like a bubble of noxious gases in a magma-filled crater of churning emotions. The numbness of solidified basalt on top cracks almost audibly. A floor board creaks from above: Sherlock shifting his weight. You open your eyes, sniffing once and whipping at your watering eyes with the back of your hand before you bump your fist against the door – gently, so as not to disturb Mrs. H., even though you want to smash the wood to splinters – then pushing away from it to ascend the stairs again. If you don’t do this now, you might never muster the courage.

When you enter the living room, however, you find Sherlock slumped in his chair, head in his hands. Gone is the straight posture from before. Now, he seems small, in pain even, his coat huddled around him like skin grown too large. He looks up from under his lashes when he hears you enter and you notice his eyes are red-rimmed with fatigue. He looks awful.

“You came back,” he croaks, straightening with a wince.

You frown. “I could say the same thing about you.” Carefully, giving nothing away, you cross your arms tightly in front of your chest.

You watch Sherlock slowly flex his fingers, balling his right hand into a lose fist before releasing again. “John, please give me the chance to explain.” He sounds so earnest. And suddenly, there it is: Your breaking point, the opportunity you have been waiting for without any hope of ever getting to this point ever again.

“No.” Your voice is calm. He looks stricken, opening his mouth to speak anyway. “No, listen!”, you interrupt. “You owe me that. Just listen for a moment, Sherlock, will you? You know I’m not good at these things.”

He looks bewildered but says nothing more, for now. You take a deep breath, gathering what strength you have left, deliberately opening the door to that closet with the memories stuffed inside and the emotions glimmering, almost blinding you. You reach for them with both hands, wrapping them around your heart like a cloak, like armour. You need to feel them close for this. They snuggle up to you like warm, friendly animals, with soft fur and comforting weight, and you wonder why you were ever afraid of them.

You bite your lip, looking at the floor between Sherlock’s feet, taking in his scuffed shoes, his stained, ill-fitting slacks, your eyes wandering up towards his face with every sentence you speak. “You were dead. I mean, obviously you weren’t really, but to me, you had died. I won’t ask you how you think I felt. I know emotions are not your area. So I’m going to tell you.” You meet his eyes briefly and they are wide and scared. You won’t let it deter you.

“For the longest time, I felt like the world had ended. I couldn’t sleep, couldn’t eat, couldn’t even drink my bloody tea. I couldn’t understand why you had done it – still don’t. You’re going to have to explain that some time, by the way. – but what was so much worse was that I thought it was my fault. That my best friend k-killed himself – “ Your voice breaks for a moment. “Hrm. That you killed yourself and I should have seen it coming. I should have been able to prevent it.”

You rush through the last statement. Realising you are watching the floor again, you raise your eyes to his. He is shocked silent. You swallow before continuing. “And I know you understand that, Sherlock. I know you have felt guilt yourself when you couldn’t save that old lady, for example. But this was so much worse. This was you. My univ-“ You catch yourself before you say something hopelessly, sappily romantic. The leather of the chair creaks as Sherlock shifts uncomfortably. Clearing your throat, you go on.

“You were the best and the wises man I have ever known.” There, safer territory again. “And I just could not figure out what had gone wrong... And then I was so fucking angry! Angry at me and angry at you. At Moriarty. At Greg. At poor Mrs. Hudson. At everybody, but yeah, mostly at me.” There are tears threatening to spill so you pinch the corners of your eyes for a moment.

“It didn’t last. After a bit, I started to push it all away, lock it up, you know? Kind of like your mind palace.” You give a bark of humourless laughter. He looks chagrined, like he has swallowed a lemon.

“I missed you so much and I didn’t even know why.” You have to stop to breathe a bit. Mercifully, he doesn’t interrupt, just looks at you with a growing frown, like he is slowly realising an error. Good. His hands are loosely clasped between his knees now, still in a way that means he’s listening. You continue.

“I mean, no offence, but it’s not like we had known each other for that long, and there I was... Anyway, I started trying to figure out what was going on. So I could move on. And that’s how I realised...” You falter. This is hard. Now that you’ve come this far, you don’t know how to say it. You look at his eyes again. He’s frowning like when he’s on the verge of a deduction. You are not sure if you want him to reach is own conclusion or if you would rather be the one to tell him first. You give it another try.

“I’m not sure how to put this. Grieving for you is... was... like having the centre of-“ No. Again, too sappy. Sherlock won’t understand. He’ll laugh at you. “I...”

But it’s too late. Sherlock’s frown has vanished, replaced by a look of dawning comprehension.

“Don’t say it,” you throw in. You try to fend of his deduction, a shaky breath escaping as you feel the colour draining from your face. You know you won’t be able to stand this, him tearing your feelings to pieces, ridiculing you, telling you you’re weak, you’re wrong. “Please, for the love of god, Sherlock, don’t say it. Please... please.” You are begging now. How is it possible that a moment ago, you were the one who wanted to tell him, put it out in the open. Once and for all.

“John,” he says gently.

“No. No, this was a bad idea. I... it’s the shock. I’m overwhelmed. You’re alive!” You give a little laugh, almost hysterical in tone. “I wanted you not to be dead. I was hoping for a miracle for so long and here you are!”

“John.”

“No, please. Don’t. Don’t spoil it. Whatever happened, I’m so glad you’re back and I don’t want to spoil it with my maudlin.” Your eyes dart around the room, looking for something to save you from this strange, terrifying moment, but then there’s Sherlock, right in front of you. The crashing waves of panic freeze inside your chest.

“I know what you aren’t saying. It’s all right.” His tone is unexpectedly kind, like he’s calming a spooked horse. He touches your forearm to make you look up. There really is a new scar or two on his face. You wonder how many more are hiding underneath his cloths, underneath his skin. You are reminded of that first night, here at Baker Street, with him looking at you like this: assessing, calculating, standing far too close, almost nose to nose. You can’t help it but to look back.

“This is the reason I left, John,” he says quietly. “Because I care for you as well, and I couldn’t see you die because of my sentiment. It made you a target, so I removed the threat. You see, I never expected you to reciprocate.” His breath ghosts across your face, your lips. It smells like he hasn’t brushed his teeth in weeks, or washed, or changed his cloths. He is so close to you that you can see where the stitches went in to close the thin, white scar now almost bisecting his left eyebrow. But this can’t be real. He can’t mean what you think he’s saying.

“Sherlock,” your whisper sound breathless, scandalised, incredulous.

“I apologise if I miscalculated,” he murmurs and before you can ask what he means by that, he has dipped his head and pressed his chapped lips to yours. The touch is infinitely gentle, barely moving across your mouth, demanding nothing. You are falling, realising this must be a dream: Sherlock alive, Sherlock returning, Sherlock kissing you, professing to feel the same. It can’t be real. Safe in that assessment, you see no reason not to enjoy the fruits of your madness.

You let your eyes drop shut, feeling your way along the kiss with your lips, the tip of your tongue. Saliva makes your mouths glide together easily, half open, just the other side of chaste. A hand comes up to support your head, cradling your face, and you become aware that you’ve grabbed on to Sherlock’s arms with both hands, pulling him in. He opens up a little wider and you feel the sharp edge of a chipped front tooth as you venture forth a little too far.

You continue to kiss, reverence in every motion. You try to kiss Sherlock like you wish you had kissed him... before, pouring all the love and tenderness you are feeling through the gentle movements of your lips, showing him he was cherished, wanted. That he had had a reason to stay. The last thought breaks something inside you. The tears that had been stinging behind your eyes slowly come forth one by one. You end the kiss with a few pecks to Sherlock’s still-open mouth before turning your face away in embarrassment, whipping at the moisture with your cuff, afraid to look and find him gone.


*~*~*




10



Time starts again as you open you eyes and he is still there. Not a figment, not a hallucination, not a dream, after all. You look up into his eyes, noting the dilated pupils ringed by cerulean irises. “I am so sorry,” Sherlock murmurs and you know it’s not for the kiss. It’s for all that came before. “Please forgive me.” You can feel your lips pull into a smile. “You still have a lot of explaining to do, but yes. Of course I forgive you!”

Later, you will ask him about his new scars. You will listen to him telling tales of loneliness and torture, starvation, cold and fear, the first kill, the second. How it changed him despite his determination to stay unaffected. Of running and hiding and being chased across the globe, and how he had kept himself afloat and sane with thoughts of you.

For now, you hold him close as the world spins on.


the end

About Time
So, I somehow sat down this afternoon and wrote this. I blame it on discovering Amber Run and watching too many fan vids (and reading one or two fanfics). I haven't written anything, Sherlock fanfic or otherwise, in ages.

Second person POV (John)

No beta.

I'm looking forward to your feedback!
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  • Listening to: Mixed pop music
  • Reading: Sherlock fanfic
  • Watching: nothing (no time)
  • Playing: Bejewelled
  • Eating: plum cake
  • Drinking: herbal tea
Update time! I'm relieved to say that I handed in my master thesis a week ago and am hoping for positive feedback. Now, I'm feverishly preparing for my master's exam. Never before in my life did I have SO MUCH stuff to study for just one exam. So many books, so much information! I'm not at all sure I'll be able to cram it all into my brain to a sufficient degree because I can barely concentrate enough to even just read it all. I spend six days a week from 9am to 11pm studying, with about two hour's break. The seventh day is for revising what I've learned. This will go on for three more weeks.
When I planed my study time, I didn't expect the volume to be quite this massive... I'm so not used to this. The only up-side of things: Most of this stuff, I've learned several times before. I specifically picked three of the four necessary subjects because they interest me, plain and simple, and that's as good a reason as any, I think. Furthermore, re-learning some of the things I once knew is reminding me why I studied nutritional sciences in the first place: it's simply awesome! And re-discovering that gives me great pleasure. (Doesn't mean it isn't difficult as fuck, though.)

So, not much time to watch movies (also, I've used up all the good ones on my HD, I think.) and I'm mostly too tired to read anything for pleasure, either. There are still a few films that accumulated in recent weeks, though.

Oh, and Buffy. I re-watched Seasons 4 to 7 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and loved it all over again! This time, I was focussing on the Buffy-Spike-relationship and it's one of the most fascinating ever in TV history. The only thing that irks me is that I'm having big trouble finding decent fanfic to go with it :( Any recommendations?

"Secretariat" - I didn't want anything too demanding that night, so I re-watched this Disney "biopic" about the greatest race horse in history. I don't know what it is about horses, but they always engage me in a way that's beyond compare. Even though this movie had a few stretches between race scenes (it would have been better with just 90 minutes runtime), those scenes nearly gave me heart attacks, had my hyperventilating and urging on the on-screen horse even though I knew perfectly well who was going to win. Wow. And the archive footage they had of Secretariat? Amazing. That boy was just unbelievable. It looks rigged, it really does, the way the whole field is running at full tilt and he's moving past them like they are all just trotting lazily - and on the outside track, too! - but apparently this story really happened.
So, anyway. Good acting by a number of familiar faces. I think I didn't know most of those people when I watched the movie for the first time, except maybe John Malkovich (yes, he's in this!). But there's also James Cromwell (love him!), Diane Lane (too old for her role, as I felt, but hey!), Dylan Walsh (Nip/Tuck), Nelsan Ellis (LaFayette from True Blood) and some other people you just know when you watch TV.
Great camera work on the horses and racing scenes! Lighting was beautiful, if a bit conventional. I don't know if there were any effects here or if it was just clever shooting and editing.
So, if you like horses: go for this on!
And for those of you who want to see:
  • The last race. Record still unbroken today. I mean, this... he's just leaving them behind in the dust like a boy on a motor bike would a few toddlers with their tricycles. www.youtube.com/watch?v=V18ui3…

The Brothers Bloom” – I’ve wanted to re-watch this drama comedy adventure thing about two con artists for FOREVER because it’s one of my favourite films even though I’ve only seen it once. I really enjoyed the crazy journey once again. This one is full of absurdly funny jokes, but also loads of symbolism. There’s a huge metaphor in there, too, but I can’t seem to put my finger on it. The whole thing just really screws with your head until you don’t know what’s real any more than the characters do. Worse then Inception, I tell you. WAY worse (in a great, engaging way).
Also, this has some of my favourite actors, basically all familiar faces in the main cast. There’s Adrien Brody with his sad eyes, Rachel Weisz, Mark Ruffalo (I think I didn’t know him the first time I saw this), Maximilian Schell and Robbie Coltrane. I can’t even say anything about the acting because it was just so... the characters were moving on a self-set stage all the time. Most of the humour came from when they stumbled off it, but also most of the drama. What I mean is: you don’t even notice them acting.
The visuals were chosen with great care to the point of becoming almost distracting. They had some great sets and locations and slipped in some hint or philosophically meaningful symbol in almost every shot (at least that’s how it felt). That magic trick by Rachel Weisz is break-taking and the little glimpses at stage art are fascinating.
I also liked the way this seemed to be set kind of out-of-time, with steam trains and boats, old mansions and 30ies wardrobe. Yet they had Lamborginis and mobile phones. It’s really confusing and adds to the humour.
I can’t shake the feeling that this film is really deep underneath all the absurd comedy and heart-breaking romance (and ending). A gem to be savoured and not to be re-watched until it’s dead.

Er st wieder da“ ("Look who's back")- A thought-provoking film, half mockumentary, half drama, about what would happen if Hitler woke up in modern-day Germany. First off: This material works way better as a movie than as a book. Though it more than toes the line between tasteless and merely satirical, it IS funny in its absurdity (in the beginning, at least). Only problem: the actor the chose to play Hitler is clearly a theatre actor. Then again, maybe that’s on purpose because if this was TOO realistic, it would just be scary as hell instead of hysterical. Especially when there are points you actually agree with, like him mocking daytime TV. Witnessing Oliver Masucci struggling to keep a straight face in some scenes takes the sting out of it a bit, though. And then they have some hand-camera docu style footage of asking the “German people” for their political views that is scary realistic. Kudos to the extras and the director!
And then, just as you settle into the tone of this odd satire, they bring something like the dog scene to drag you down to earth again...
Oddly enough, this is a lot like “Borat”: serious method acting. Lots of improvising, from the looks of it. Amazing how, in the second half, this turns into a critique about money-grabbing managers, in the end, and how it is ultimately their greed that leads the modern world into darkness because they’d do anything for money. And then it even dived into honestly heart-wrenching drama and mystery-thriller darkness for the big finish. I have to say: this film impressed and scared me. I think they changed the ending from what was in the book because I don’t remember it being this shocking. It’s a great movie in times like these, more burningly current than ever, that provokes thought and stimulates people to make up their own minds. Most importantly, it provides a chance for self-reflection.

Upside Down” – Granted, I was looking for light entertainment tonight, but not this weightless. (haha, no pun intended) This romance about two worlds had some sweet ideas (also, it had elements from Cinderella (the running out bits) and Arielle (burning feet)) and nice visuals, but mainly a cute main actor going for it. In fact, I was bored after not even half an hour. The gist of the story was just too generic Romeo-and-Juliette, with a lazy bit of writing called “amnesia” thrown into it. What I hated about this was not only the unexplained inequality between the opposing worlds, but mostly that capital punishment was in effect for completely inconsequential things like people just talking to each other or visiting each other. It made no sense and I HATE when important plot aspects like this make no sense in movies. It all seems completely arbitrary and random. And then it all turned out ok due to some dumb dues-ex-machina like twists. And the end? Oh god. In the words of main character Adam “I can’t believe it.” Nonono. Dumb, dumb, dumb. What I can’t believe is how anyone could ever green-light this script.
So, now that I’ve ranted about the stupid writing, I want to discuss the acting, which, all in all, was decent. Kirsten Dunst was mostly just none-annoying decoration. Timothy Spall added at least a little bit of gravitas and seriousness. Jim Sturgess looked pretty typecast-ready with his charming smile and boyish glint in his eyes.
The visuals were clearly expensive, but probably only really great in 3D. Personally, I though there were just too many stars, clouds and sunbeams involved.
So, annoying as hell. No recommendation, unless eye candy like Jim Sturgess is enough reason to watch a film.
PS: Oh, I just saw I might have gotten a censored version of this. The movie was missing 20 minutes according to IMDB. Maybe that’s one of the reasons it made no sense and was so blah.

"Tarzan" (1999, Disney) - I'm going through all the classics I've never seen during my childhood. Didn't miss all that much, apparently. Once you get used to Studio Ghibli and Pixars (the original one), Disney doesn't hold a candle in the animation business. Anyway, this film was surprisingly touching, especially in the beginning where there was no dialogue. I didn't expect that, but got used to it quickly and just as I thought there could be more to this, the apes started talking, after all The plot was generic, but I knew that. The predictability is kind of reassuring, though, in a way.
The animations were ok, though very computerised. Phil Collins wrote some of my favourite songs for the soundtrack, and they make a lot more sense in context.
So, an ok film, though I think for a kid's film it's toeing the line of violence a bit. Young kids, I mean.

"Treasure Planet" - For a Disney film, this had surprisingly complex and ambivalent character designs. I was quite delighted. The story was good, too. Classic coming-of-age adventure. The only thing that wasn't perfect were the computerised animations. Those looked lazy, especially since some of the stuff still seemed hand-drawn. The mix didn't come across well.
Loved the touching score by James Newton Howard and Alan Silvestri, and lovely soundtrack by what sounds like the Goo Goo Dolls. And I didn't even recognise Joseph Gordon Levit's voice here, even though he was so fantastic in "The Wind Rises". Surprisingly, I would have liked to see a sequel.

Sleeping Beauty” – Got to this one in my round of Disney Classics and... woah! (the bad kind of Woah): Underaged marriage and teen pregnancy! What is this?? And the fathers are talking about the princess like she’s a brood mare! Horrifying!!! All the kudos the story gets for being somewhat original (I like the idea of making the fairies the main characters, for once, in this fairy tale.) get deducted again, and more, for this arranged marriage at 16 nonsense. I know the movie is ancient, but this is a remastered version and even though I absolutely hate remastering because it generally makes thing much worse, these plot points deserve to be fixed. At least make her 18, for crying out loud!
Anyway, the animations were surprisingly two-dimensional and stylistic. It’s clear that this was some kind of stylistic experiment. The songs had the potential to get stuck in your head, though.
Okay, other than that: not a remarkable film, and totally outdated.
PS: I suppose it’s better than the original Grimm story, though, where the prince was a somnophilic perv who impregnated that princess he found sleeping in the tower while she was still unconscious. At least these two here supposedly fell in love.

Night Moves” – Woah, this supposed thriller about environmental terrorism was a pretty boring film by any (not just thriller) standards. At 20 minutes I was bored. At 30 I was shocked to find the clock hadn’t progressed any further than that, and it continued in that vein. The characters ranged from unlikeable to annoying. The dreary colour palette would have fitted a documentary better. The acting was flawless, but that’s about the only good thing I can say here. I did not get the ending AT ALL.
Not a recommendation. Am very disappointed.
  • Listening to: Mixed pop music
  • Reading: Sherlock fanfic
  • Watching: random movies
  • Playing: Rayman (PC)
  • Eating: sweets
  • Drinking: water
Ok, I've been home for a month now. I mean, back in Austria. The terrifying thing is nothing has changed. At first, I missed Sweden and my Viking terribly (oh, since the last update things got... very... well, they developed :D), but I applied myself to my new task: the master thesis. So I rented a room next to the uni and before I knew it, I'd spent 3 weeks of 12-hour shifts at the lab. And now I've done a week of writing...
In the evenings I'm watching movies (and during the day, I'm reading way more fanfic than I should, but hey!) so here are some new ones:

Friends with Benefits” – This was actually quite a charming, adorable romantic comedy. They really did everything right: Avoid the worst of the clichés, write a snappy, spot-on script, fantastic, life-like dialogues with just enough improvisation, and a perfect cast. Justin Timberlake was marvellous in this. There was not a single flaw to his performance. He and Mila Kunis had great chemistry and she was also absolutely brilliant. I think what contributed to this film being so good is that it’s really easy to see yourself here insofar that everybody knows what a best friend looks like – or instant chemistry.
What surprised me a bit were the frequent and sometimes quite explicit sex scenes. But in light of recent events I have a new appreciation for that and can also appreciate the realism. Ah, ok. Enough about that
So, I have not a single bad thing to say about this piece. I really enjoyed it.

Phoebe in Wonderland” - Very moving and sensitive film about mental illness in children. Above all else, this stood out because of the magnificent acting: Elle Fanning gave an absolutely Oscar-worthy performance (if I still gave a damn about Oscars). Especially the scene with her mom coming into her bed was absolutely incredible. I guess this is another piece of evidence that talent is genetic.
I thought it was quite bold to make a film like this. It does not have much entertainment value, but it moved me to tears on several occasions. In the beginning, I kept searching for the red thread which is a bit difficult to pick out, but I got lost in the fabulous acting. It’s kind of odd to watch a film because you want to see what the lead actress is going to surprise you with next.
So, interesting film with a medical mystery but this is mainly great because of the acting.

Love and other drugs” – Well, this was completely unnecessary. A standard romance movie of the worst kind. Annoying characters. Dumb script, luke-warm acting... Didn’t impress me at all. Except maybe for the sex scenes, which were shockingly hot and explicit IMO (for this kind of movie, I mean).

10 things I hate about you” – I don’t quite know why this classic romantic comedy of the 90ies is one of my friends’ favourite movies, but I guess it’s an ok film. I’ve never gotten around to watching it before and now – in 2016 – it truly felt like a “blast from the past”. I was young during the 90ies too What a time to have lived in! When you told your date a certain time and place and then stuck to it. No mobile phone, no facebook, no whatsapp needed. God, I miss those days! Things were so simple then!
Anyway, lovely Heath Ledger in here. I’m still not quite over his death. He had such potential! And his lovely smile! I can’t help but be reminded of Chris Hemsworth when I look at him, though. And Joseph Gordon Levitt! So cute!! Adorable, this little version of him. What I enjoyed about all their acting was that they do this seriously, and did a very professional job.
What I didn’t enjoy was the soundtrack here. The 90ies had some great music, but they did not pick a single song that I would call enjoyable. In fact, they seem to have sifted through the dredges of Alternative and come up with the sludge at the very bottom. Also, they picked the lyrics to be totally on-the-nose. Meh.
So, anyway, nice way to waste an evening that should be spent with me writing my master thesis.

"The Martian" - I just re-watched this because I finished the book last week. Somehow, I was a bit disappointed. In the cinema, this was a great film. The book is fantastic. But seeing the movie again reminded me of how little tension it has, especially compared to the book. That's very sad because the story is awesome. On top of that, I noticed all the ingenious bits from the book that were missing this time around while feeling patronised by all the explaining that was going on.
I realise this makes me sound like I didn't enjoy the film. I totally did! I would watch it again without hesitation. It's just... it feels like it had more potential.
But I have to say, the visuals were absolutely top notch. The tons of GCI they put in here were barely visible. Great work! And the Mars panoramas... Speaking of which: here's a nice crowd-science project about mapping actual Mars satellite images if you like: www.planetfour.org/
Okay, now I'm way off course. So I'll leave you with a recommendation for this one.

"The Revenant" - woah, ok. This adventure revenge drama about a left-to-die trapper was very different from what I expected. With all the hype, I had thought that there was no way this could possibly own up to its name. Oh, but it did, though not in the way I expected. First off, though I give huge kudos to Leo for his hands-on approach, his performance didn't stand out so much as to be Oscar-worthy (then again, the Oscars are shit these days, anyway.) All actors delivered equally awesome performances. BUT the movie as a whole is totally deserving of all the awards and more. I don't think I've ever seen this gritty, realistic, live-like kind of dirty and cold before in a movie depicting this era. Amazing job on the look and feel of this! This was clearly made by all rules of the trade, a solid piece through and through. Also, the shoot must have been the hight of uncomfortable. The cold looks absolutely real and all the times Leo gets wet... this must have been torture. It doesn't look like there was much room for neoprene underneath those skin-tight leather trousers.
In fact, the costumes were so good that I recognised neither Tom Hardy nor Domhnall Gleeson.
The violence was quite bearable, actually. I was afraid they'd emphasise it more. Instead, we got tons of breathtaking nature shots which I did not expect. The visuals were great (though the CGI bear went back and forth between awkward animation and scary-real)- I liked the philosophical side nots. Then again, the stuff with the dreams and visions reminded me too much of "Hidalgo" and that breaking of the fourth wall in the end just creeped me out to now end. I was literally telling him to stop looking at me.
On top of that, there was a fantastic score by Ryuichi Sakamoto. Very atmospheric and absolutely perfect with its minimalistic strings and deep, dark tones.
So, anyway, good film! Definitely one to watch again, but this time in HD. I kept thinking I would really enjoy this in bluray quality. The only concern I have is that it might drag a bit on second viewing. It's not as if this was tension-packed to begin with.

Jack Reacher” – Well, this Tom Cruise vehicle – like most of his film – turned out way better than expected. A well-executed, reasonably original spy crime action thriller thingy. Rosamund Pike seemed a bit out of place sometimes with her wide-eyed, spooked expression, but everybody else was great as always. I particularly liked the right hand of the bad guy. He displayed some great versatility in that scene with the girl. Tom Cruise’s trademark smirk and swagger are just something to accept and maybe even enjoy if you suspend your annoyance for a bit.
The effects and fights were great. I really liked the car chases, strangely. Those were well-done and even somewhat inventive at times. Stunts, sets, costumes,... the whole execution was the level of trade quality you’d expect of something with Tom’s name on it.
Anyway, this is a good action movie with a somewhat inventive plot and well set-up twists. Far more engaging than I thought it would be. Definitely one to watch if you are into his kind of movie.

Un moment d'égarement” (One wild moment) – Woah, this was a very different film than I expected. I thought I was settling in for a romantic comedy. Instead, it turned into a kind of psycho-drama-thriller thing about an underaged girl seducing her father’s best friend... it’s intense how she more or less rapes him while he repeatedly says “Stop” – and then blackmails him with their not-so-secret secret. What's really frustrating and frightening is her complete disregard for his concerns and wishes. He fears that his life could be ruined because he's the adult and thereby responsible. So he tries to do the right thing and pushes her away every time she tries to kiss or touch him, regardless of why attraction might or might not be there, but she just laughs. I really felt for his character because he really did not want this and was doing everything short of hurting her to stop her, but he would still be the bad guy if it came to a trial.
The actors were stunning and brave. I simply love Vincent Cassell (and he was a great choice for the role of “best friend”. I’d do him too ) and I adore how they gave the actors tons of room to breathe with long takes and on-location shoots. The girl they picked to play opposite him does look hard to resist and the guy playing her father was very well-chosen too.
The only thing that dampened the experience where the exceptionally bad subtitles. The movie was in French, accompanied by subs that were clearly translated automatically from German and made no sense at all a lot of the time.
Still, all in all, a thrilling film where you expected things to go horribly wrong at any moment and that kept me on the edge of my seat.

Her” – This little philosophical gem about a man falling in love with an AI was quite thought-provoking. For one thing, it made me realise how much sifi and movies have biased me when it comes to a plot. It’s so hard to surprise me any more and I expect disaster around every corner because I’ve experienced what feels like every twist there is and seen it go downhill at some point. But this film continued to surprise me by not falling into all those traps and clichés. The whole issue with AIs quickly turned supercreepy, though. Also, I think Theo is basically writing letters to himself at work, back and forth. And then the thing with OS relationships came about and I had the feeling that soon nobody would date a real person any more and that’s maybe the evil plan of the machines to extinguish humanity But no, seriously: We are part-way there already. We all know those zombies crowding the streets who talk to invisible people all the time...
So, the acting was great! Joaquin Phoenix really did a smashing job. It must be incredibly hard to essentially monologue all the time, playing just one end of a phone conversation. I only wish they had given him even longer takes. I would have loved to see him work even harder. I also enjoyed Chris Pratt and Olivia Wilde.
Visually, this was quite polished too. Cool production design, neat soundtrack. Nice colour palette. Amazing score by Arcade Fire.
The only thing I didn’t like was that Samantha’s voice was coming from off-screen like she was standing there and not from computer speakers. But I am certain that was on purpose.
So, brainy philosophical piece about the validity of emotions, development of personality, what makes you into you... and thankfully this was just barely touching on AI potential to rise above humanity, for good or ill. This feels like a film that needs to settle first. I might have more to say on this later.

Extremely loud and incredibly close” – I expected this to be a total tear-jerker. Instead, this drama about a boy losing his father in the WTC was a bit bland and soulless. It felt like a script writer learning to cook up a story, selecting a base that would be to the taste of their patriotic American audience, stirring in a bit of irresistible sentiment (little boy), adding a pinch of social study and sprinkling it with Asberger’s. But they forgot the salt so it was all a bit tasteless, despite the random nice idea cropping up. The most interesting character was the mute grandpa.
Anyway, strong performances, especially by Sandra Bullock. The boy was good, but not very subtle. He needs refining. Tom Hanks probably got paid the most of all the actors, but he was completely unnecessary, his genius wasted here with no room to breathe.
So, not a film to watch again. Though it didn’t bore me, exactly, it was not very remarkable either.


Oh, and did I mention I watched Grey's Anatomy S11 (during lab breaks) only to discover there's another season? I have to say, the series is quite ok still if you disregard the inaccurate medicine. I quite enjoyed it.
  • Listening to: Laith Al-Deen
  • Reading: Alla vi barn i Bullerbyn - Astrid Lindgren
  • Watching: Supernatural S11
  • Playing: Bejewelled
  • Eating: bread with jam
  • Drinking: water
So, my exchange semester in beautiful Sweden is officially over. I had to leave my cosy life, my new home town and my Viking behind. I'm kind of trying to get myself over it through TV: I started the new Supernatural season 11 and I have to say, if you binge-watch it, the series is not so bad even now. That makes me wonder if, maybe, I liked it so much during the first seasons because I was also binge-watching it.
Anyway, though both the plot and the stakes are confused and muddled by now, there are still some good episodes, like the one I just watched: Ep. 20 had me laughing and crying simultaneously and I'm just mad at the people over at supernaturalwiki for spoiling the surprise for me with one stupid picture on their main page. After I'm done watching this series, I should definitely work on my master thesis, though... This is just the last excuse not to be doing anything.

Movies I was able to squeeze in before I left:

Winter’s Tale” – this was a deeply moving fantasy film about love transcending time and being at the root of miracles. To be fair, the story was a bit patchy and neither very elaborate nor particularly solid. But it was well-told in beautiful pictures and with absolutely heart-stirring performances, great lighting and a particularly moving score.
Colin Farrell is quite good here (though he could use more riding lessons in order to look really comfortable - like Russell Crowe does). None of the performances stood out, though. However, I was surprised to see Will Smith here. An unconventional, but great casting choice.
The costumes and sets were lovely, but the CGI seemed sloppy in places (they could have done a better job on the white horse in particular) and ruined the beautiful work of the lighting crew.
The thing that struck me most was the absolutely fantastic score. It moved me from the first minute and helped to make the re-union scenes even more stirring than the deaths. It was hard to place the composer and I thought it would be someone I didn’t know. Turns out the unsurpassable Hans Zimmer AND a guy who is Harry Gregson-Williams’ brother (talent obviously runs in the family) or something were responsible.
Anyway, objectively, this is not a great film, but it was well executed, moving and reasonably gripping. I was never bored. And I’m absolutely over the moon to say that the love story – finally – didn’t hurt me to watch.

If I stay” – well, this was a solid tear-jerker about a gifted young cellist in a coma after a car crash. The story itself was not very original, nor was it told in a particularly inventive way. But the film still managed to hold my attention without effort. That was partly due to the fantastic lead actors: I could really believe that they were totally in love. Not one bit of it looked fake. It was all very natural. The rest of the cast, too. (though I don’t believe parents that perfect exist.)
What surprised me was that this film was a lot more about music than I thought it would be – and they even taught the actors enough about their instruments to make it utterly convincing.
So, a heart-wrenching teen romance. Nothing special, but a good movie all the same.

3” – Strange German movie about a couple separately falling in love with the same man. Things get complicated when she gets pregnant. What starts out as a bewildering, slightly boring art-house film turns into a hysterical comedy halfway through. The actors were all good, very hands-on (harhar) and not shy with the nudity (something tells me there were no “modesty patches” used). The plot was just on this side of realistic (I mean, life is full of odd events and coincidences, isn’t it?).
Anyway, I’m not sure how exactly I feel about this film. But I loved the score!

Kaboom” – well, this was a horrible disappointment! I’ve never seen a film from that Sundance festival that was actually bad, but this one takes the cake. Completely crazy plot, couldn’t decide whether to be a horror-, coming-of-age-, comedy-, crime-thriller-, family-drama-, mystery-thriller-, Buffy-rip-off- or art-house-movie. What a confusing, sickening mixture. It looked a bit like “A town called Panic”, crazy and disjointed, but with the down-side of taking itself way to seriously. I couldn’t even tell if the actors were any good. I hope at least they were having fun...
I cannot find a single positive thing about this film except maybe the soundtrack. All in all, like a bunch of wacky ideas thrown into a blender: the mixture looks exactly as bloody and disgusting as you would expect it to be.

"The fox and the hound" - I haven't seen this one in 20 years, but I thought I could watch it over lunch break. Here are a few observations: Movies used to be so slow-paced back in the day! I think children's films should be like that, but instead they are just as fast an chaotic as the grow-up movies these days. This film progressed at a snail's pace, but I think for kids that just the right speed.
The film was still deeply moving, especially because of the score. Disney never was and never will be as good as Pixar, and now that they have bought Pixar, I guess that that's the end of Pixar, too.
Not much else to say. I'm not sure I would show it to my kids, though, if I had any. It does have some disturbing content. Then again, contrary to modern day films, it just hints at it. There are no explicit images. And the pacing as well as the minimalistic content of each image should give even young children enough time to process.

Ex Machina” – finally, a decent movie again on my watch-list. Though this story about developing an AI was full of clichés (by now, it seems impossible for screen writers to come up with anything new), it was well-told with chiselled characters and a fantastic look. The actors were fabulous, especially the super-creepy genius. Caleb was kind of cute in his awkwardness. Ava... well, you’ll have to find out for yourselves. And Kyoko, too (though no surprise there).
The writing was well-done with thoughtful use of good quotes. The set design and architecture was absolutely breath-taking. The landscapes reminded me of my Norway trip last year. It makes me wonder if a place like this could actually exist with current technology. The CGI was ok, though I felt a bit cheated: it looked like they just put the actress into a blue suit and painted her artificial body over it, adding in the background in the see-through shots via steadycam. It made the portions of her skin that were visible look TOO real/human while at the same time making her body look a bit TOO sleek and artificial. I think they might also have done something with make-up or digitally to make her skin flawless, but it just looked fuzzy and weird as a result.
Oh, and good score too. Very atmospheric.
The only thing I didn’t like was the ending: they should have ended this the moment Ava walked out of the room without looking at Caleb after dressing herself. The actual ending overdid it a bit. An intelligent movie like this doesn’t have to be one the nose like that. At the same time, a bit of ambiguity in the end would have been beneficial and would have continued to engage your brain in a good way that fit with the rest of the movie.

"From up on Poppy Hill" - Visually very pleasing coming-of-age work about a school girl finding out things about her family. I love how they recreated 60ies Japan. also, seeing those traditions brought to the screen is always very interesting to watch and better than any documentary. When they bother to draw those actions, you always have the feeling that these are ordinary, everyday things that people really actually do.
But: Who knew Studio Ghibli could be so creepy? In the middle, there was a reveal (which I was kind of expecting but hoping to be wrong) that had me really disgusted. Then again, they ironed it out in the end.
The rest of the story was quite inventive, if not completely free of clichés. All in all, it was a touching film, though. Good work from Goro Miyazaky.

Edit: Done with Supernatural S11! And woah, what a finale! The final 4 our 5 episodes were simply amazing! SPN at its best again. I'm just a sucker for family drama here and this was literally the mother of all family dramas. And the ending was quite... ah... I mean, shit! What happened there? Are real people really a threat any more? This feels like it should be beneath Sam and Dean, but at the same time I have the feeling that there's an ace up someone's sleeve here... then again, what bigger ace than having a certain author on your side can there be? So, I'm officially back in the game of Supernatural, and logically they are taking the right step with toning this down again to more mundane levels, but at the same time it makes no sense...

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:iconagatha-macpie:
Agatha-Macpie Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
thanks for the watch !
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:iconheidinanookie:
heidinanookie Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2016  Hobbyist Photographer
you're welcome :)
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st2wok Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2015
Happy Birthday! :party:
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:iconheidinanookie:
heidinanookie Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2015  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks!
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:iconst2wok:
st2wok Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2015
welcome!
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Nim-lock Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2014  Professional General Artist
Thanks for the watch! It is very appreciated :D
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:iconheidinanookie:
heidinanookie Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
You're very welcome :)
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annoulaki Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2014
Thanks for the watch! :D
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:iconheidinanookie:
heidinanookie Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
You're welcome!
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NekoWork Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Hi! Thank you so much for watching!
Really appreciated! <3
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