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Archive for April, 2011

Adopt a Word

The other day I read someone’s blog and they had written about all the things they’d done when WordPress was down a while ago.  One of the things they had mentioned was adopting a word.  The idea is that, in a desperate attempt to save the English language, you make a promise to revive an uncommon word by using it as often as possible.  Inspired by this, and fuelled by my anger over the new words that were recently added to the dictionary, I decided to give it a go.

At first I browsed the internet for uncommon words.  I found one that I liked; it meant ‘the first person you see after you leave your house’.  I was going to pick it, but I couldn’t find it in my dictionary and though I’m sure it’s a real word, I decided not to use it.  Naturally, I thought the simpler way would be to just look through the dictionary until I found one I liked, however I soon realised that there are a lot more common words than uncommon ones (obviously).  Eventually, in the ‘L’ section, I found a word I liked.  The word is ‘loquacious’ and means talkative.  It comes from the Latin word for speak, which is ‘loqui’.  When used as a noun loquacious becomes loquacity as in ‘I prefer tongue tied knowledge to ignorant loquacity’.

I will now attempt to use the word loquacious as often as I can and hopefully it will spread and become part of normal speech.  Now I urge you to, not only use the word loquacious, but also find an uncommon word and adopt it.  Think of the future.  Next time the dictionary is updated poor little loquacious could be out on its ear.  We must save the words before it’s too late.

What do you think?  Will you save a word from extinction?  Is loquacious your new favourite word?  Let me know by leaving a comment and voting below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.

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Get Well Soon PlayStation Network

I’ve been slacking lately, but I’m trying my best to get back on track.  Anyway, something else’s that’s been slacking lately is the PSN, PlayStation Network, which has been down for over a week.  Slacking may have been a bad word to use seeing as Sony have been working hard to basically redo the entire network, plus they’ve been sued over the whole thing, but hey I needed a segway, which apparently isn’t a proper word according to spell check.

The reason the PSN is down is because hackers got in and stole player’s personal details.  This includes; real names, e-mail address and even credit card details.  Don’t panic, the credit card details were encrypted, it all comes down to how good a job Sony did encrypting them.

Exactly how much longer the PSN will be down is unclear, but Sony has announced that no one will lose any data.  This means your trophies are safe.  Sony is also trying to think of a way to reward players for being so patient, not that you had a choice.  It’ll probably be a patience trophy or something cheap like that.  Then again, I shouldn’t make fun because avid trophy collectors would probably love it.  Let’s just hope the PlayStation Network makes a speedy recovery.

What do you think?  Are you a fan of the trophy system?  What have you been doing since the PSN went down?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


Call of the Dead

Call of the Dead is one of the new maps that will be featured on the new Call of Duty map pack.  The pack will be released early May.  Call of the Dead will be bringing a familiar cast of characters, by which I don’t mean familiar Call of Duty characters.  Sarah Michelle Gellar, Danny Trejo, Michael Rooker, Robert Englund and George Ramero will all be in the game, the first four will be playable characters and Ramiro will be some form of boss.

The trailer was done in the same style as Grindhouse.  It looks great.   The plot goes like this; a group of explorers shipwreck on an abandoned Siberian outpost, they accidentally release an army of zombies and must fight for survival.  Check out the trailer, below, and let me know what you think by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Insidious

After a 12 year break, Phantom Menace star, Darth Maul makes an appearance in James Wan’s Insidious.

Okay so it may not be Darth Maul, but it’s pretty damn close.  Anyway, Insidious was made by, both, the creators of Saw and the creators of Paranormal Activity, which are two very different types of horror films.  Saw is all about the visuals, the traps, gore, etc, but Paranormal Activity focuses more on suspense, as a result, Insidious, falls somewhere in the middle.

The story follows a couple, Renai and Josh, and their three children as they move into a new house.  One of their sons, Dalton, is scared of his new room.  One night he hears a noise in the attic, which he explores, but a step on the ladder breaks causing him to fall.  He seems fine, besides being terrified by something in the corner of the room, but the next day they find he has slipped into a coma.  The strangeness in the house increases so much that the family, who are taking care of Dalton at home, decide to move.  However, the move proves fruitless and they are forced to face the truth; it’s not the house that’s haunted it is their son.

The film has received fairly positive reviews, but a common complaint, among fans and critics, is that the end of the movie cannot possibly live up to the high standard that is set by the rest of the film.  The plot sounds like a rollercoaster ride and, if the reviews are true, you’ll be watching it with your eyes closed.  If you live in America, you may already have seen it, but for us Irish folk, and people in the UK, we’ll have to wait until the 29th of April, which is only two days away, but still.

Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne star as Josh and Renai, respectively, and it was directed by James Wan.  If you’re a horror movie fan then this is probably a must see, it’s already the most profitable film of 2011 and it’s not even out everywhere yet.  Let me know what you think by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Water for Elephants

Robert Pattinson goes from an animal eating vampire to a circus veterinarian as he attempts to take his career in a more serious direction.  Will his plan work or will he always be haunted by Edward Cullen?

Water for Elephants started out as a book by Sara Gruen.  It was Gruen’s third book and was initially turned down by her publisher.  Since publication, in 2006, it has become a bestseller and can be read in 44 different languages.  The story is narrated by Jacob Jankowski, a 90 something year old man living in a nursing home.  Jacob reminisces about his life as veterinarian in a circus.  While working at the circus, he met, and fell in love with, a married woman named Marlena, as if that wasn’t bad enough, her husband is a paranoid schizophrenic.

The movie follows the same plot and stars Robert Pattinson as Jacob, Reese Witherspoon as Marlena and Christoph Waltz as August, Marlena’s Husband.  Both critics and movie goers have criticised the chemistry, or lack of chemistry, between Pattinson and Witherspoon.  It seems that the 11 year age gap may have taken a toll on their performances, which, to be honest, isn’t surprising.  Besides that there isn’t much criticism to be said, but chemistry between characters can make or break a movie.  It really makes me wonder if, when casting for the movie, they were looking for chemistry or just big names.

Though not my type of movie, I have to say that, from the trailer, the movie looks very well put together.  If you’re an animal lover you should be warned that there are some scenes of animal cruelty.  The cruelty toward animals was also present in the book, because it was very common in circuses back then, but no animals were actually hurt it’s all just Hollywood magic.

What do you think?  Does this movie help Robert Pattinson become a more serious actor?  Is the book better or worse than the movie?  Did you think there was chemistry between Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


JJ Returns to Criminal Minds

A few months ago, Criminal Minds fans were devastated by the sudden departure of AJ Cook who played JJ, Jenifer Jareau, one of the primary female characters on the show.  Cook was let go in an attempt to prevent the show from becoming stale.  However, reactions were extremely negative, as JJ is a fan favourite.  After hearing that over 60,000 people had signed an online petition to bring her back, the studio rehired Cook, who said she was hurt after being let go but found the fan reaction very comforting.

Cook wasn’t the only cast member to be pushed off the show, Paget Brewster, who plays Emily Prentiss, was also removed from the show.  However, she was given the option to stay on as a recurring character rather than a series regular.  Her final episode was ‘Lauren’ which still hasn’t aired in some countries, including mine, so I won’t spoil it.

JJ will be returning as a series regular at the start of next season, but she says that both her and her character have changed due to the experience of leaving.  Being kicked off the show was a ‘wakeup call’ to just how harsh the entertainment industry can be.  The ‘new JJ’ will be more serious and mature but don’t worry ‘she still has heart’.

Brewster has also been offered the chance to return, whether it’s as a series regular or not isn’t clear.  After leaving the show, she did a pilot for a different show.  If the show doesn’t get picked up she may return, but if it does chances are Prentiss has left the building.

Are you happy that JJ is returning?  Do you want Prentiss to come back?  Is this the end for Rachel Nichols character, Ashley Seaver?  What do you think?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


The Origin of Easter

Have you ever wondered how Easter became what it is today?  What do eggs and bunnies have to do with the resurrection of Christ?  Well there’s actually a simple answer and it involves people pushing religion on each other.

Every Spring Pagans held a festival to honour their god Eastre, who’s symbol was a rabbit.  When the Christians came to convert the pagans to Christianity, they found that the Eastre celebration happened to be on the same day Christians celebrated the resurrection of Jesus.  To make it easier to convert the pagans they simply allowed them to continue their festival, which involved painting eggs, but in a Christian way.

So that’s why we get chocolate eggs delivered by bunnies every year on the date Jesus returned from the dead.  It’s actually a lot simpler than I thought; I was expecting a big government conspiracy.  Let me know what you think of the origins of Easter by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Iconic Movies

Have you ever started a conversation with someone and just been lost when they talk?  You know a lot about the topic, it’s just that you’re knowledge is on different aspects of that topic.  This has happened to me in the past.  Probably on everything I know a lot about, at one stage or another.

The one that really annoys me is when it happens with movies.  I love movies.  I’d watch movies all day long if I could; I’ve proven this many times.  Yet sometimes, when I bring up movies to someone they just say ‘have you seen’ and list some movie that I’ve heard of but haven’t gotten around to seeing.  It’s really embarrassing, especially when you’ve just said ‘I love movies’.

I’m a huge horror fan, but I like movies of all genres.  Though I am a horror fanatic, there are some holes in my collection.  For example I’ve never seen Psycho or Jaws.  I just don’t get how a shark can be scary when you live on an island that’s oceans contain no sharks.  Let’s face it he’s not going to swim up the drain and attack me while I’m sleeping is he.  Still the film is iconic and I hate judging movies before I’ve watched them.

So now I intend to fill in the holes in my movie trivia by watching the movies I’ve been meaning to see.  They won’t all be horrors, but they will all be reviewed on this blog.  I’ll also be comparing these classics to modern movies.  I’m going to watch one a week and post the review/comparison on Saturdays.  I’m going to start with Jaws.  If you’ve never seen it then give it a chance and we can see if it deserves to be called a classic together.

Between now and Saturday posts will still be going up on a daily basis so check back for reviews and previews on all the latest movies, games, TV shows and books.

What do you think?  What classic should I do next?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe and click the picture it moves, but wordpress is being annoying (which is happening a lot lately) and for some reason it won’t move unless you click it.


Project Café aka The Wii 2 aka Nintendo Stream

If, like most people, you got tired of the Wii after the first five seconds, you may be hesitant to fork out money on the sequel, but don’t worry this time Nintendo is aiming the console at serious gamers, oppose to the casual gamers that the Wii targeted.

The console has been operating under the codename ‘Project Café’, which, as far as codenames go, sucks.  Now, it is rumoured that the official name, for the Wii 2, is the Nintendo Stream (as ign said, let’s hope they don’t call it the Wii Stream).

This new console will run faster than both the PS3 and Xbox 360.  It will have HD graphics.  Each of the games controllers are also handheld games, yeah that’s right it’s a console in a console.  Seems amazing right?  Of course all this means nothing if they don’t release any good games for it.  A lot of people are still waiting for good Wii games to hit the shelves, but it looks like that isn’t going to happen.

The console may be released near the end of this year, if not it should come out early 2012.  You should also note that it isn’t only the target audience that has gotten more serious, it’s the price too.  The price is expected to be around $400.  A European price has yet to be announced.  Just remember Nintendo is hesitant to confirm all the details so they may change.

What do you think?  Are you ready to buy another Nintendo console?  Do you think it sounds cool?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Alice: Madness Returns

Alice in Wonderland is a story that pretty much everyone is familiar with, girl follows a rabbit down a hole and goes on a crazy adventure.  In 2000, PC gamers got the chance to see what it would be like if the adventure was a hell of a lot more crazy and dark.  The game was praised by critics and it wasn’t long before planning for a sequel began.  Unfortunately, the sequel was put on hold after the movie, yeah that’s right movie, fell through.  11 years on, players will get to revisit this insane wonderland as the sequel has finally come.The first game follows Alice who has been driven insane by the death of her parents in a fire.  She then lives in a mental institution, where she loses touch with reality and one day she arrives in Wonderland, the events of the original books have already taken place, only to find that it was been warped by her tortured mind.

The second game takes place 11 years after the first, which is the real life gap between the games.  In this time Alice has managed to remain sane, but is still seeing a psychiatrist.  Alice begins to remember suppressed memories and is soon dragged back into the Warped Wonderland, where she must fight her way out, using a variety of weapons.

The game will be released on the 14th of June in America and the 16th of June in Europe.  It’s coming out for PS3, PC, Mac and Xbox 360.  PS3 and Xbox editions will come with a one use only code that grants you a free download of the original game; it’s unclear whether something similar will be included with the PC and Mac versions.  The game looks great and with the added bonus of getting the original for free, it’s pretty much a must buy game.  That is, unless you’re not in to completely insane third person action games.

The trailers all do a really good job of selling the game.  The graphics are stunning and the action is great.  You can see Alice kicking ass with everything from a rabbit bomb to a machine gun.  Check it out and let me know what you think by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.