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Posts tagged “plot

Whiplash review

When an ambitious young jazz drummer is given the chance to prove himself by joining an elite orchestra, he is pushed to his limits by an uncompromising conductor. Will he crack under the pressure or does he have what it takes to be one of the greats?

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The Amazing Spider-Man 2 review

Spider logo

Since the end of the first film, everything appears to be going great for Peter Parker and his alter-ego Spider-Man. He’s graduating from high school and taking down mobsters, but even though it looks like his life is perfect he’s still haunted by the memory of Gwen Stacy’s father and the promise that he made and broke. (more…)


A Few Best Men Review

Picture this, before one of them gets married a group of guys go out to celebrate, get drunk, wake up with no memory of the many things they did the previous night and then have to try fix everything in time for the wedding.  While this may seem like a totally original, never seen anything like it before plot to some, others may notice some striking similarities with a little known movie called The Hangover.  However, don’t worry because A Few Best Men does plenty to set itself apart from The Hangover franchise, like having a story that isn’t completely predictable.

When David (Xavier Samuel) returns home his friends are shocked to discover that he is engaged to his holiday romance, Mia (Laura Brent).  David then brings his friends to Australia, where Mia is from, so that they can all meet Mia’s family a few days before the wedding, but will the English lads fit in?  After they there, David goes off with his bride to be while his friends take a detour to get something extra special for the bachelor party.  From here there’s a bunch of crazy stuff involving sheep, alcohol, gun violence and some missing cocaine, but let’s not spoil all that.  However, even with all the wild stuff that happens at, and because of, the bachelor party the most unrealistic thing in the movie is how quickly the wedding was put together.

Despite the obvious comparison to The Hangover, A Few Best Men didn’t feel like a rip off.  The characters are likeable and their friendship seemed much more real than those in The Hangover, particularly David and Tom (Kris Marshall) who seemed more like brothers than friends.  As the movie progresses so do the characters and you can see the relationship between Mia and David begin to show cracks as they start to realise how little they know about each other and maybe their holiday romance should have ended at the airport.

The best thing about the movie is that no matter what crazy problem the boys bring on themselves, the characters always seem real.  They are believable as a group of people that grew up together and care about each other.  They took in David, who doesn’t have any family, ‘even though everyone though he was gay’ and they all just became brothers, which is what motivates them to try keep the wedding on track.  Then again, if male bonding and crazy bachelor parties don’t get you to the cinema, go for Olivia Newton-John who plays the hilariously crazy mother-in-law.

A Few Best Men hits cinemas today so be sure to check it out if you like comedies, even if The Hangover wasn’t your favourite movie you’ll definitely find a laugh or two at this English/Australian mix, which is brought to you by the people behind Death at a Funeral (the English version).


The Dark Knight Rises Review

It’s been a long wait, and a lot of hype, but The Dark Knight Rises is about to land in cinemas, on the 20th of July.  Is it possible for the movie to meet the high expectations of the fans?

The Dark Knight Rises picks up Eight years after the events of The Dark Knight, which is a little confusing at first because some important things have happened in those years.  Batman taking the blame for the crimes, and death, of Harvey Dent has brought about significant change as a new law, inspired by Dent, has given police the power they needed to take Gotham back from the criminals.  With the mob finally behind bars, Gotham no longer needed Batman.  This lack of purpose and the loss of Rachel have turned Bruce Wayne into a recluse.  However, the threat of new evil is enough to shake Batman out of retirement.

Anne Hathaway had an extremely challenging role.  There have been so many great portrayals of Catwoman over the years and she managed to surpass them all.  This version of Catwoman is tough, independent, layered and sexy without being ridiculously over sexualised.  Without a doubt she was the right person for the job.  She was given a really interesting character to play and she did it justice in a way that nobody thought she could.  It’s easy to forget who is actually playing the part and get lost in the character, which proves just how great an actress Hathaway really is.

Selina Kyle is a great character, with a rich history and it was really nice to have this history explored but not thrown in your face.  The Selina shown in this film is the finished product.  You can see what she does and who she is, but not how she got there.  This may not sound like a good thing, but it really is.  How often do people sit you down and explain why they are the way they are?  It doesn’t happen.  It’s clear the character has been through a lot and has had a troubled past.  In fact, escaping that past is a huge motivating factor for her.

Bane has never really been done justice on film before so Tom Hardy didn’t have as much to live up to in that respect, but he’s still playing the man who broke the bat which is a pretty big deal in the comic world.  While it was sometimes hard to understand him, it didn’t really hurt the performance.  To keep the film grounded in reality some changes were made to the character, though they didn’t seem necessary they provided a deeper, more emotional reason for why Bane fights.  As a villain he is very direct and calculated, while also showing no remorse for his actions.  He is pure brute force.

In the comics, Bane has such an interesting backstory and fans may be disappointed to see that it has been changed somewhat.  The alterations feel largely unnecessary as it seems like there were many other ways they could have made the same point without messing around with his history.  However, the edits do provide some twists and turns while also giving fans of the comics something new.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Marion Cotillard, who both starred in Christopher Nolan’s Inception, are new to the Batman universe.  Levitt plays orphan turned police officer, John Blake, and Marion Cotillard plays Wayne Enterprises board member, Miranda Tate.  Both do a really great job with their characters, proving once again that Nolan has a keen eye for casting the right people.  While Miranda Tate helps bring Bruce Wayne, played once again by Christian Bale, out of is reclusive state and back to Wayne Enterprises, John Blake works with Commissioner Gordon and Batman to try bring down Bane.  Blake’s ideals sever to highlight those that both Bruce Wayne and Commissioner Gordon once had but have now lost.

Though the film’s long running time, of just under three hours, may be challenging on the bladders of those who ordered the extra-large drink, ever second is necessary to the development of the characters and the story.  This is not a brainless action film it has depth, social commentary and extremely interesting characters.  The series is brought to an amazing conclusion that should leave fans feeling fulfilled, but, at the same time, little sad as it still feels like there is so much life left in the franchise.

What do you think?  Are you a Batman fan?  Do you like Christopher Nolan’s take on Batman?  Which is your favourite film in Nolan’s franchise?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below, also don’t forget to click the like button, if you liked this post, and please subscribe.


Resident Evil: Retribution trailer reveals new story details

Sony Pictures have released another trailer for the upcoming addition to the Resident Evil film franchise, Resident Evil: Retribution.

It’s never easy converting a story from one medium to another, there will always be diehard fans that are understandable protective of the original.  When Resident Evil made the transition from game to film it wasn’t so much about keeping loyal to the original story but rather the feeling of playing the game, which is why I split fans.  Some weren’t able to get over the lack of familiar characters and story, while others appreciated the uneasy atmosphere that mirrored the one in the games.  As the series progressed it introduced more elements and characters from the games, but began to lose any resemblance of tone or atmosphere.  For this reason many fans of the games openly dislike the series as it doesn’t feel like a Resident Evil experience and the characters do not behave like their game counterparts.  From the latest trailer it appears that the film franchise will be moving even further away from the story of the games.

There is a lot of information about the story in this trailer.  It was previously stated that a number of characters, who featured in previous movies, would not be returning in this film because they were captured by Umbrella.  The trailer adds to this by showing that Alice was also captured and is being held in a fictional reality were she is married to Carlos Oliveira and the two of them have a child together.  Ada Wong finds Alice and reveals that the life she is experiencing isn’t real and is only implanted memories.  It’s still a little confusing about who is and isn’t a clone, especially since Alice is seen having two different hairstyles throughout the trailer.  The narration states that Umbrella has used Alice to perfect the virus, which brings on a whole new theory of how her deceased friends have returned; maybe they were actually brought back with the virus.  Though considering Carlos was blown up and jigsaw experts would be require to bring the original James ‘One’ Shade clones are still the most logical bet, which is a little disappointing.

As a fan of both the movie and game series, I thought the trailer looked really good.  The story looks interesting and I’m looking forward to actually understanding it.  It seems over the top with lots of action and really if that’s not what you want to see then this isn’t the right franchise for you.  It doesn’t resemble the games so much in terms of story, but there are a lot of elements from the games that can be seen throughout the trailer.  Most obviously are the zombies and B.O.W.s which strongly mirror those of the games.  More characters from the games have been brought into the film as well as a proper return for Jill Valentine who only briefly appeared that the end of Afterlife after being absent from Extinction without any explanation.  The movie comes out on the 14th of September 2012, until then all we can do is speculate but isn’t that one of the best parts of being obsessed with movies?  Maybe that’s just me.

What do you think?  Did you enjoy the trailer?  Are you planning on seeing the movie?  Do you like when characters from the game appear in the films or do you think they don’t carry over well?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also, don’t forget to subscribe and, if you like this post, click the like button.  If you enjoy speculating feel free to add your theories in the comment section.


The Last of Us – Plot, Characters and Moral Dilemmas

Though it didn’t make number one on my top ten list yesterday, I decided to start with The Last of Us, irony, because number one and two on the list have already had so much coverage and didn’t really show anything new at E3.

The Last of Us is set in a post-apocalyptic urban world were the survivors of an outbreak must struggle to stay alive fighting both each other and the infected.  The story follows Joel and Ellie, who aren’t related but share a father daughter type relationship.

In this game survival is the key and can be achieved through a number of ways.  Players must scavenge to find supplies to keep them alive and defend in case of attack.  When other survivors are in the same area you may simply choose to sneak past them and never engage with them, but this luxury comes at a cost.  If you avoid conflict then you miss out on the supplies that you would have found on the body after you kill them.  People you encounter in the game will also be scavenging and every item they find means that there’s one less for you to get.

Characters are designed to feel like real people, which is intended to make it hard to kill them.  Not all of the characters you encounter will be bad, but that’s a risk the player will have to take as some will simply try trick you into thinking you can trust them.  What Naughty Dog are trying to do, and seem to be succeeding in doing, is to simulate a real life post-apocalyptic world were the player will have to decide if they can kill people or not.  It’s a big moral dilemma that is added to by the realistic character ability, meaning that the player will only have the strength and speed of an average human, making each kill a struggle.

Infected people are similar to what you’ve seen in various zombie games.  In recent years we’ve essentially said goodbye to slow moving zombies and I have a feeling this game will make you miss them even more as the fast moving, somewhat intelligent infected hunt you down.  The cause of the infection is a fungus, called cordyceps, that really does exist.  In reality the fungus has the ability to affect the behaviour of the insects that host it.  In the game this fungus had mutated and now controls human behaviour, after they are dead, creating zombie like creatures.

The demo shown at E3, showed an encounter with a group of hostile survivors.  This time the player chose to engage with the group and kill them, but the situation could have been avoided entirely had the player wanted.  The demo gives a really good feel for the game, which looks amazing.  The AI of both Ellie and the hostiles seem extremely realistic.  AI sidekicks have a pretty bad relationship, but Ellie seems to be a massive step forward.  The idea behind her was to make her an asset to the player so they will actually like having her around.  At one point Ellie picks up a brick, holds on to it for a while and then uses it to help when the player ran out of bullets.  As well as helping in combat situations, Ellie will also scavenge and bring you things that you might need, like bullets for your gun.

The full demo can be seen below, check it out and let me know what you think by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also, don’t forget to subscribe and click the like button.


Men in Black 3 Review

For a while it didn’t really look like there was going to be a third Men in Black film, but after a ten year absence Agents J and K have returned to the big screen.

Regardless of how you felt about the second film, if you enjoyed the first, you should give this sequel a shot.  The story picks up years after the events of the second film with an old foe of K’s escaping from an alien prison.  When word spreads J, seeing K is hiding something, begins to tire of the seemingly emotionless relationship the two have.  Then, with a simple alteration to the timeline, Agent K disappears from the present having now been killed in 1969.  J, being the only one who remembers the original timeline, must travel back in time to prevent the change.

Originally the plot seemed like a way to deprive MIB fans of Tommy Lee Jones, who plays the role of K brilliantly, but it quickly became clear that although Jones is physically absence from a large part of the film he is there in spirit, as Josh Brolin has clearly done his research and emulates Jones perfectly.  Brolin’s version of K is more open than his older counterpart, which is because an event that causes him to become emotionally distant hasn’t happened yet.  His enables J, played by Will Smith, to get to know his partner a little better.  Also, despite Brolin in reality being 44, a year older than Will Smith, his character is 29 making him the younger agent.  This adds a new interesting twist to their relationship, similar to K discovering the changes that had happened during his absence when he returned in number two.

The plot was interesting and funny, which was somewhat of a surprise as I had prepared myself for 106 minutes of boredom.  Though it’s never really clear about why Agent J can remember K in the present, it does give a vague reason, but I’ll let it go because the rest of the plot was interesting and really enjoyable.  Seeing MIB in 1969 was like watching an old sci-fi movie, even the aliens were made to look like the ones that would appear in those kinds of films.  Time travel is always a really interesting plot device, but it’s also so easy to do wrong.  If it’s too complex then you lost most of the audience and you risk making mistakes, if it’s too simplistic then it just won’t feel real.  MIB 3 probably would have been close to the too simple side were it not for Griffin, played by Michael Stuhlbarg.  Griffin is similar to Doctor Manhattan from Watchmen, except he’s funny and generally a nice guy.

The biggest let down of the film is that Frank, the talking Pug, isn’t in it.  Frank appeared in both previous MIB movies, receiving a larger role in the second instalment because of how much audience’s loved his character in the first film.  It seems like a strange choice not to give him a part, considering he’s a fan favourite.  I guess in a world were Tommy Lee Jones doesn’t even get to appear in the full film, no one is safe.  All things considered, Men in Black 3 is a fun, clever and interesting movie that deserves to be given a chance.

Did you like the film?  How do you think it compares to the previous two instalments?  Which MIB film is your favourite?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also, don’t forget to subscribe and, if you liked this post, click the like button.


The Amazing Spiderman New Trailer and info

To avoid my usual pun about Spiderman info hitting the web, I’m just going to say that there is a new trailer for the upcoming superhero film The Amazing Spiderman and you can see it here, or in many other places.

So far all we’ve really seen is the action, but this time we get to see what’s at the heart of the story.  Peter desperately wants to discover the truth about his parents, where are they and why did they leave him with his aunt and uncle.  While going on this journey of discovery, he becomes Spiderman and learns that he can be a hero.

The film’s director, Marc Webb (oh come on seriously), said, at a press event, that he thinks of this as less about Spiderman and more about Peter Parker and his origin story.  Having suffered in silence through the last attempt at bring Spiderman to the big screen, I can honestly say that a character driven film will be a welcome change.

Though the well-developed characters and interesting plot take precedence over all else, in my eyes, let’s not forget about the action.  The trailer gives us a better look at the lizard, who looks to be a formidable enemy for the young web slinger.  When creating the character Webb aimed for a facial design that would be able to show emotions, though the only emotion shown in the trailer is anger, I’m sure there’s a full range of others to come in the movie.

Check out the trailer below and let me know what you think by voting and leaving a comment.  Also, don’t forget that if you like this post, show it by clicking the like button or subscribing, if you really like it.


Resident Evil Captivate

Capcom have revealed a lot more information about some of their upcoming titles at this year’s Captivate.  Amongst the games shown was Resident Evil 6, which has been given a new, much sooner, release date.

The sixth, numbered, game in the Resident Evil franchise will now hit shelves on the 2nd of October, over a month earlier than it was previously expected to arrive.  This news comes at the end of a very informative, action packed trailer that reveals that, though it definitely is Sherry and not Ashley that appears alongside the mysterious mercenary, I was right about who Chris was referring to in the previous trailer.  That’s right, it’s Ada Wong.

Ada last appeared in Resident Evil 4 and goes back as far as the second game.  She and Leon share a complicated story, which may be part of the reason why he defends her in the trailer, even going as far as pointing his gun at Chris, despite the fact that she so obviously has some major involvement in the chaos that is going on all around the world.  Ada also reveals the identity of the mercenary character and we were all wrong.  He is not HUNK or Alex Wesker, he is Jake Muller the son of Albert Wesker.  Don’t feel too bad though, Jake didn’t see it coming either.  Due to his genetic relation to Wesker, his blood is important, which is why Ada is hunting him down and Sherry is, I’m going to say, protecting him.  She seems to just constantly get hit by things so she probably isn’t that good a protector.

Other details revealed were that players would be able to choose a campaign and play it through to completion; this means that you can play each team’s story from start to finish without changing to another part of the way through.  However, the stories are not all separate from each other and there will be overlapping.  In fact, the characters will come across each other a number of times in the location that is common to them all, China.  Eventually each set of partners will make their way to China were they will face off with the new virus on the block, the C-virus, and the people responsible for its release.

The C-virus is similar to its predecessors, it turns people into zombies, real zombies, but as with previous viruses, G and T, it causes the zombies to behave a little differently.  When infected by the C-virus, zombies can enjoy the freedom to run, jump and even occasionally hold weapons.  Infection of the C-virus can be caused by a disgusting puss filled zombie that sprays a mist of the virus out of its pores.  The effect appears to be nearly instantaneous.  Breathing in this mist is a sure fire way to become a running, jumping, occasional weapon holding zombie.  It will be interesting to see how this infectious enemy is incorporated into the game, though it won’t be the first time zombies have been able to infect players.

According to Capcom, Chris will not be the same fun loving guy he was in previous Resident Evil instalments; his personality has changed as a result of him going through some personal tragedy six months before the main events of the game.  This is why his part of the game opens up six months before the main events of the game.  From what we’ve seen so far, it’s a fair guess that the burning, melting and mutating of most of his team, at the hands of none other than Ada Wong, is probably the cause for his transformation, but nothing solid has been announced regarding this.  That alone is definitely reason enough for him to think that Ada is behind the whole outbreak, but how plausible is his theory?

So far in the series, Ada has always been working for others.  It’s hard to believe that she is the mastermind causing all of the destruction.  IGN pointed out some mysterious scenes that appear in rapid succession that they found while slowing down the trailer.  In some of these scenes an unknown man in a suit is shown, possibly he is the cause of all this devastation.  He may even be Alex Wesker, the Wesker ‘family’ definitely plays a part in the game so it’s possible.  Then again, it could be Ada’s fault; after all we don’t really know if she is Ada.

Despite looking like Ada and sounding like Ada, Capcom have refused to confirm whether or not the woman shown in the trailer is actually Ada Wong.  Though they did once say that Ada would play a part in the game so it is most likely her, fans have still begun speculating that the character is a twin or clone of Ada who is trying to frame her.  Sounds pretty crazy, but there is a method to their supposed madness, by which I mean a list that, according to them, was leaked a few months back containing the names of characters in the game.  Ada is on the list, but so is the name Carla Radames and in brackets beside it is ‘Ada’s clone’.  Having not previously heard of the list, I naturally have a hard time believing it, but that doesn’t mean it’s not true.  However, I do feel that a bigger deal would have been made out of such a list as it also contains the name Sherry Birkins and Jake Muller, plus it reveals Jake is Wesker’s son.  For me at least, pending further information, the list is a hoax.

Now back to what we do know.  We know that each of the three partners have their own separate story, each focusing on a different style of gameplay, ranging from gothic survival horror to all out action.  Leon and Helena Harper must survive the outbreak in Tall Oaks only to fake their deaths after being blamed for the murder of ‘Present Evil’, the zombie U.S. president.  Chris and his, sniper wielding, partner Piers Nivans are put in an action packed army style war against the terrorist.  Finally, Sherry and Jake are being hunted by a massive B.O.W., Bio-Organic Weapon, who is intent on capturing Jake on behalf of, for now let’s just say, Ada Wong.

With three full campaigns it’s really hard not to be excited about this game; it’s by far the biggest and most elaborate Resident Evil game to date.  It’s so big that there have been some rumours floating about that this was Capcom’s way of wrapping up the series, but fear not because, in an interview, people involve in the game have stated that the reason for Jake’s character was to start bringing in younger people to take over as the main cast were getting on in years.  With Jake, Piers and Sherry all filled with enough youth for another six Resident Evil games, I think the series is pretty safe for the moment.

The game also includes a mercenary’s mode, which this time does not have to be unlocked and is available from the start of the game.  Other mini games are expected to be announce in the coming months, hopefully at least one not involve running around looking for extra time.  How cool would it be if there was a survival mode were the clock actually ticked up timing how long you could fight off the hordes or zombies and B.O.W.s?  That’s my dream anyway, but even if it doesn’t happen I’ll be fine because there seems to be something in the game for everybody.  If you, like me, are seriously looking forward to the latest Resident Evil adventure, then you’ll be glad to know that a playable demo has been announced.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t come out until September and will only be available for people who buy a copy of Dragons Dogma.  Xbox 360 players will get the demo 60 days before PS3 users, but both still need to purchase the game to download the demo, which doesn’t seem fair to people who weren’t planning on buying Dragons Dogma but that’s just how it’s going to be this time around.

It would be nice to see the new controls, which include being able to use melee attacks, shoot and walk and even lie down on your back and shoot.  Plus, it would be a good chance to check out the new AI, but is it worth buying an entire game?  Honestly, if you weren’t already planning on buying Dragons Dogma would you buy it for the demo?  Maybe if I had more money I’d consider it.  Speaking of wealthy fans, for those Resident Evil fans that are lucky enough to have grave deep pockets, a collector’s edition of Resident Evil 6, containing a replica of Leon’s leather jacket, will be available costing over a thousand dollars.  Personally, I tend to avoid collector’s editions that cost more than ten euro more than the regular addition and, since I’m hoping the regular edition of Resident Evil 6 doesn’t go anywhere near a thousand euro, dollar or whatever, I’ll be giving this collector’s edition a miss.

There are still several months to go before this game comes anywhere near a shelf, but that doesn’t mean we can’t get crazy hyped up on sugar, annoyingly talk about it to people who don’t care and come up with wild theories about every detail of the game.  Honestly, I think that the build-up to a release date and all the speculation is really fun and if you think the same please leave a comment below and let me know what you think of the game and all the new details.  Also, if you enjoyed this post, don’t forget to click the like button and maybe even subscribe.


Ted Trailer

There’s pretty much no escaping it, when you were a kid you had that one toy that just stood out from the rest.  It’s the one that is probably still secretly stored in the attic, because it seemed so wrong to throw it away.  Wouldn’t it be cool if that toy could come to life, and not in a ‘you don’t get to know’ Toy Story sort of way?  In his feature-length directorial debut, Seth MacFarlane is making one kid’s, Mark Wahlberg’s, dreams come true.

Ted is the story of a child, John, who is granted a wish to make his stuffed bear come to life, but when he grows up he doesn’t grow out of their friendship and the bear, Ted, continues to live with him and is getting in the way of his relationship with his girlfriend Lori, Mila Kunis.  Is John ready to let go of his childhood best friend or will he instead let go of his girlfriend or will there be some sort of middle ground?

Well we won’t know for sure until the film comes out on the 13th of July, but either way it does look funny.  The trailer shows that both John and Ted are pretty immature, but, while you may expect that from a twenty seven year old stuffed bear (or maybe you wouldn’t), a grown man should know better.  During the trailer Ted can be seen going places that no stuffed bear has gone before, by which I mean doing drugs, drinking alcohol and, how to put this gently, being sexually suggestive with a supermarket scanner and a chocolate bar in an attempt to hit on a fellow supermarket employee.

The film seems to have similar humour to that of Family Guy, which is another of Seth MacFarlane’s projects.  MacFarlane, along with, Wellesley Wild and Alec Sulkin, who also write for Family Guy, co-wrote the screenplay for Ted.  The comparisons with Family Guy are going to be unavoidable, not because of any story resemblance, there isn’t any, but the fact that Ted sounds exactly like Peter Griffin is going to draw these comparisons in, plus there’s Mila Kunis who also plays Meg Griffin in Family Guy.  Out of all the voices that Seth MacFarlane does, Peter’s is probably the most suited for the role.  It’s not that the characters are the exact same, but they do have a lot in common and Peter has always wondered what it would feel like to be a bear.  Imagine how strange it’d be if Ted had Stewie’s voice, it would be a completely different movie.  It just wouldn’t fit.

The plot seems interesting, but I’m imagining John growing up and letting go of Ted in the end and maybe even Ted going back to just being a regular stuffed bear, which would be a pretty feel bad ending for a comedy.  Then again, maybe it will be much lighter.  Ted and Lori could work out their differences and maybe even run off together leaving John stuffed and put in the attic, who knows.  No matter how it ends, it’s seems pretty clear that if you like Family Guy you’ll probably like this movie.

What do you think?  Are you looking forward to seeing this movie?  Would you like one of your old toys to come to life?  Do you think John will have to pick between Ted and Lori?  Check out the trailer below and let me know what you think by voting and leaving a comment in the section below.  Also, don’t forget to follow and click the like button.