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Easter joy for ‘Beauty and the Beast’ (2017) as the movie surpassed 1-billion dollar in worldwide box office. Also movie review for ‘The Fate of the Furious’ and ‘The Boss Baby’ (2017).

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 14, 2017 by vincentloy

First of all, Happy Good Friday and Easter to those who are celebrating! This year’s Easter has been a joyous moment particularly for the movie ‘Beauty and the Beast’ as it has recently grossed over US$ 1 billion in worldwide box office. This live-action remake of the original 1991 animated movie that starred Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans, Ewan McGregor, Ian McKellen, Stanley Tucci, Emma Thompson, etc has become the 29th film in history to cross over the 1-billion milestone. The movie has exceeded expectation in the box office and is also gaining positive reception from critics. It is the first 2017 film to cross that mark and soon, there will be another movie this year joining that prestigious list. And that will be ‘The Fate of the Furious’ which is the 8th film in the popular ‘Fast and Furious’ film series. Besides than being currently the highest grossing film of the year, ‘Beauty and the Beast’ also accomplished another record by being the highest grossing live-action musical film ever.

‘The Fate of the Furious’ sees the return of original cast as well as some new members. This movie reminded me again of the death of Paul Walker several years ago, an actor who has been crucial in this film series but died in a car accident. The previous ‘Furious 7’ film concluded with high note and touching ending and is the first of the film series to gain over US$ 1 billion in worldwide box office. Hence, I’m expecting this 8th film to cross that milestone too. Back to this latest movie. It tells about an arrival of a mysterious woman who seduces Dom (Vin Diesel) into the world of terrorism and a betrayal to those closest to him. The movie starred Vin Diesel, Jason Statham, Dwayne Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Charlize Theron, Luke Evans, etc.

Similarly to the previous movie, this film delivered with some intense, over the top and exhilarating action scenes in a scale that no one has foreseen. Cars raining down to the street and a huge submarine chasing a group of cars and a tank. This film series started with some humble car racing moments to extensive gun fights and attacks of high proportion we saw in recent movies. It is going big. Despite it is already being the 8th film, I find every film has its refreshing storyline and different outtake on its action sequences. I also noticed that Hollywood takes on this approach to find Oscar-winning cool-looking actresses to portray villain in big-budget movies nowadays. Charlize Theron as the villain in this movie and then soon Cate Blanchett will be the villain in ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ which will be coming out end of this year. There are some hilarious parts to balance things out (and also some adorable moments from a baby). Out of 10 points, I rate ‘The Fate of the Furious’ a total of 7.6.

Recently, I also watched another much relaxing movie called ‘The Boss Baby’. It is an animated movie about a suit-wearing briefcase-carrying baby who pairs up with his seven-year old brother to stop the dastardly plot of the CEO of Puppy Corporation. It’s funny to see a baby with an adult mindset on a serious mission to stop an evil plot, and he is joined by a brother who wanted him to be out of the family due to diversion of his parents’ attention to the baby. The movie is highly entertaining. Certain flaws and plot-holes in this movie are forgivable too. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘The Boss Baby’ a total of 7.0.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web) 

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This Easter weekend: Time to choose which side you are on, Batman or Superman?

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 25, 2016 by vincentloy

Happy Easter Weekend! I’m not a Christian, I didn’t celebrate it, but I’m too in the excitement of most of the people here in Australia who treat this festival as among their most important celebrations every year. In conjunction with that, there’s no class today (Good Friday today) and also for next week too. Wonderful holiday. This short break would give me the much needed time to relax while doing on some assignments for my study without the need to rush (I hate rushing for deadlines). Since there are not much to do today, it’s the perfect time to go out for a movie. A movie’s ticket here in Australia is very expensive (four times the cost of a movie ticket back in Malaysia), but I still wanted to watch this movie quick.

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Yup, it’s the ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’. I’m not a comic book fans (Marvel, DC or whatever it is) but I have the urge to watch this highly anticipated movie of the year. Despite receiving early criticism especially in the casting and that criticism continues to the poor reception it has right now from many critics, I still wanted to see it. I believe many will too, so that we can judge it by our own eyes. After seeing it, I can say that it is not a masterpiece (some die hard fans praised this movie to the max) while it is not a rubbish film either (some fierce critics calling this extremely bad). It’s just an overly-hyped average film that only marvels in its visual spectacle. Nothing else.

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In comparison, Marvel still do a better job in their superheroes films in the past. Well, they both went in different direction; Marvel goes for funnier and brighter approach while DC loves darker tone. I’m fine with DC’s darker theme but there can be something more to their outcome. DC did it right in Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy. However, both ‘Man of Steel’ and its latest sequel now ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’ couldn’t reach that level. If you have high expectation entering the cinema watching it, you would be disappointed. I didn’t mean that it is bad; it was just mediocre.

The movie is slightly too long; taking 2 hours 30 minutes. As I mentioned earlier, I’m not a comic book fans and so I’m not interested in the plentiful background story and character’s development especially for Batman in this movie. It’s a bit too much and I think some scenes (especially his many dreams of fear) can be cut off. The continuity of some scenes is also bad.

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The cast contributed steady performances on the other hand. Henry Cavill is being the same Superman like he was in ‘Man of Steel’. Same goes to Amy Adams as Lois Lane. Ben Affleck had proven to his earlier critics that he can be a great Batman too. As for Jesse Eisenberg, his take on the villain, Lex Luthor is different as required by the director. He is doing fine and I’m alright with him being cast as the famous Lex Luthor. I can see that he had put in a lot of effort to take on this big role (his expressions and gestures are good actually). It’s just that his character is being written to be not memorable enough (couldn’t match The Joker’s level in The Dark Knight for instance). But that is still interesting enough compared to the other characters in this movie. So, Jesse’s haters out there, stop criticizing him..he didn’t screw the movie up. Gal Gadot is wonderful as the Wonder Woman but she didn’t get much screen time here yet.

The story here is much deeper compared to Marvel’s films. It focused more on ideologies/philosophies, symbolism, politics, and threat of power and its perception by people or certain individual. It is a refreshing new theme to explore, but it may not please the wide audiences. Fortunately, the movie is still filled with some great fight scenes (of course the one between the two titular roles as well as the final battle together with Wonder Woman with the Doomsday created by Lex Luthor). Opps…Batman appeared to be not much of a help in the final battle since Doomsday is too strong for him. As I said earlier, the movie also delivered with wonderful visual effects (awesome CGI works done on most parts of the movie that heavily requires it). The ending is quite emotional (won’t reveal more spoiler here) and it actually paves the way for more DC superheroes films, eventually expanding DC cinematic universe just like what Marvel did (Marvel does it earlier). Overall, the movie is still fine and worth to watch. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’ a total of 7.2. Despite the poor reviews, it would still be a massive box office hit worldwide due to the fame of these two big superheroes sharing the same film. I’m guessing that it would earn over USD 1 billion in the end too.

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Well, to answer back my question on the title of this blog’s post on which side you are on…Batman or Superman, my choice would be Superman, since he is far more superior and stronger than Batman who has to rely on gadgets (not useful against Superman except Kryptonian). Batman is still a human, while Superman is an alien with superpower. So, my side is on Superman. Wait, did he really died in the end of the movie? Opps…spoiler.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

Fall sick before trip again…and on the other hand, a quick review on a TVB drama ‘Love as a Predatory Affair’.

Posted in Interesting Encounters with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 5, 2016 by vincentloy

I would be flying with my parents to Australia this weekend for our once-in-a-year vacation for the Chinese New Year break. Two more days and I would be heading to the airport for flight to Australia, the country that I have not visited before. I should be very excited by now for the trip but I just couldn’t. Why? I felt sick. I was having fever, cold and my throat is feeling very bad. The same illness that I caught before my trip to Singapore in Christmas two months ago. Why am I always falling sick before a vacation?

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Well, if I’m to take it positively; it’s better to fall sick before a vacation rather than during a vacation. It would just destroy all the mood of being a happy tourist. Now, the only thing I hope is that I will recover soon enough before the trip starts with all the plenty of medicines I have to swallow in these few days. Anyway, I’m still looking forward to this upcoming trip since it is so costly and that I would be able to visit several famous landmarks over there in Sydney and Melbourne, like the Sydney Opera House, Eureka Tower, etc.

Recently, I have been catching up to a new TVB series called ‘Love as a Predatory Affair’ starring Kitty Yuen, Jason Chan, Samantha Ko, King Kong Lee, etc. This is the first TVB drama that I watched. It is currently airing but will finish with its 21st episode tomorrow. This series is about woman (Kitty Yuen) who is not good looking, short but had a very good personality and is a master in cooking. She had a good friend (Samantha Ko) who is very beautiful but doesn’t know how to cook. Both of them felt in love to the same guy (Jason Chan) who is helping his father to run a restaurant-chain business. They then knew each other and entangled themselves into multiple issues mostly in romance and friendship. There are several other smaller plots too in this storyline involving many other supporting characters.

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Overall, I do enjoyed the series so far. There are many hilarious scenes that kept me entertained in almost all the episodes from plenty of awkward moments, funny dialogues, and interesting expressions. It’s been a long time since TVB last produced a series on cooking and so it’s nice to see this theme back from this drama. I understood that many skipped this series because it has a poor line-up of cast (not featuring any famous artists) but I think this is what makes the actors and the actresses in this series to act without pressure. Very natural performances from all of the cast especially from Kitty Yuen. Many hate Samantha Ko in this drama due to her annoying character, but to the haters out there; if her character isn’t like that in this series, then how can the story develops further? Think again before bashing out on someone who is merely portraying a role as required for the story. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘Love as a Predatory Affair’ a total of 7.3. A light-hearted romance comedy drama that is highly entertaining. Hmm…this is the first time I’m reviewing a drama even before it has finished airing. Well, there is only 2 more episodes left that we all haven’t watch out of the total of 21 episodes, and so I think I can basically review for this drama right now already.

Update- 7/2/2016: Just finished watching its final episode and I have to say that the ending is a bit too rushed without proper explanation to certain conclusions to the story. Also prefer for the series to have a proper closure rather than an open ending regarding the relationship between Kitty Yuen and Jason Chan in this drama. Anyway, my rating for this drama remains the same; 7.3.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

Happy New Year 2016!

Posted in Interesting Encounters with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 1, 2016 by vincentloy

Happy New Year! Goodbye 2015 and welcome 2016! It’s a wonderful new year!

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There is nothing more important on this first blog post of the year than to wish everyone a wonderful new year from the bottom of my heart! It’s the first day of the year, and so it’s holiday for everyone no matter where you are. Happy Holiday to everyone too, and enjoy this coming weekend break too. Nice…it’s a 3 days of continuous break again! First thing first, have you changed your calendar yet? Your 2015 calendar should be in dustbin already, and your 2016 calendar should be placed nicely in front of you now.

One of the best thing for me to do for new year’s celebration is to watch new year fireworks display in major cities across the world. I love fireworks! Eventhough it’s polluting the air but it is a must-thing for a countdown event like this very happening new year celebration. If there is no fireworks (no loud noise, no beautiful colourful display on the sky), then there is no feel or excitement to mark a new year. Thanks to some people from around the world who were very quick on uploading clips of them recording fireworks display from their respective places for the new year celebration last night that enabled me to watch them this morning already. And here are some of the clips:

London, United Kingdom – from London Eye ferris wheel with shots of iconic Big Ben tower.

Sydney, Australia – from Harbour Bridge with shots of iconic Sydney Opera House.

Hong Kong, China – from the water body as well as from several buildings out of the picturesque city skyline.

Taipei, Taiwan – from Taipei 101, former world’s tallest building.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates – from Burj Khalifa, current world’s tallest building.

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – from KLCC Park, in front of the Petronas Twin Towers, current world’s tallest twin buildings.

Beautiful fireworks, aren’t they? If you find the clips are too long (since the shows are that long), you can skip to the ending part where the climax would be when massive fireworks were put on to end it with loudest bang! These fireworks displays are so much better than the one from my own city, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. We have beautiful landmarks like Petronas Twin Towers and KL Tower, but our pyrotechnics are very poor in style and scale. I recommend for example, for the fireworks at KLCC, they should not only be released out from the park at the ground level but also from the twin towers itself. Then, it would be so much more nicer just like how Taipei 101 or Burj Khalifa did it in all these years. It’s much more beautiful if fireworks came out from tall buildings and I’m sure Petronas Twin Towers can certainly do that too. I also suggest to have a synchronized fireworks display from several buildings in the city region just like Hong Kong or even we can be better than that too. Right now, we have one spot over here shooting out fireworks in a few minutes and then another spot few kilometres away doing the same. Why not combine them and put that into one mega-scale fireworks show of the city to celebrate the new year? Look at how the other cities did that and I’m certain that KL can do that too. On the other hand, my blog’s header of the month would be also none other than a spectacular image of fireworks display too.

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Anyway, let’s forget about that. All the fireworks had already been released last night and it’s now a bright sunny morning on the first day of the year. We have for a moment thought of some major things that have happened to the world and to us personally in the past year, and now we shall look ahead and start setting goals for 2016 instead since this new year had already arrived. My goals would be to stay healthy and fit for the year, study hard and smart for my Master beginning this February at Australia, and also something else that I have not thought of right now just yet.

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Happy New Year once again! Let’s wish for a great and a wonderful year ahead for everyone!

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web while the videos are from Youtube)

World’s highest and longest glass-bottomed bridge opened in China recently with the level of hype I never expected.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 5, 2015 by vincentloy

I guessed most of you should have known this by now; China had recently opened the world’s highest and longest glass-bottomed bridge. It is also China’s first bridge of its kind. Videos of people ‘bravely’ crossing and introducing that particular bridge are widely circulated through social networking sites and reported in most news articles recently till the point that almost everyone is talking about it now. Experiences of the first pack of the bridge’s visitors; some closed their eyes while crossing due to the fear of height. Some felt dizzy straight away. Some were afraid but successfully crossed through the entire bridge to prove his/her guts.

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If you still don’t know anything of this bridge, you must be living in the jungle. For me, it is nothing more than a glass bridge. It is interesting but I’m surprised of the level of hype it obtained now till the point that I have to share it in my blog here. I will only check out the bridge if I’m happened to be passing by or visiting the national park where it is located. If not, I would not purposely go there just to see the bridge. Anyway, here you go for a bit of information regarding this bridge; When translated directly to English, the bridge is called Brave Men’s Bridge. It is a glass walkway of 300 metres long and is suspended 180 meters above a sheer drop in Shiniuzhai National Geological Park, China’s central Hunan Province.

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Each of the glass panes is 24 millimeters thick and is believed to be 25 times stronger than normal glass. One worker who built the bridge assured that the bridge will stand firm even if tourists are jumping on it. “The steel frame used to support and encase the glass bridge is also very strong and densely built, so even if a glass is broken, travelers won’t fall through.”, he added. The bridge was originally a wooden bridge before the park experimented by replacing a small section with glass in 2014. It decided to increase the thrill by revamping the whole overpass earlier this year, making it China’s first all-glass suspension bridge.

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Hunan is due to open another glass bridge later this year in the Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon area, about 300 kilometers (186 miles) northwest of Shiniuzhai. When completed, the Zhangjiajie structure will be the world’s highest and longest glass bridge — 430 meters long and 300 meters high. Well, it appears that China is not only stretching their limits in building supertall skyscrapers (their recent trend) but also in constructing terrifying and challenging bridges like this one. This glass-bottomed bridge that allows people to ‘enjoy’ views directly below their feet is already drawing huge crowds due to its viral promotion on the internet as well as coinciding with the Golden Week of China, a week-long of holiday for China’s National Day celebration currently. This is the time when millions of China nationals will go for a vacation both inside or outside of country.

Talking about tourists from China. I’m not being discriminating but I believe most of you think the same. They have very bad moral and most of them don’t behave well. I have been a traveler quite frequently and I always bumped into usually large group of tourists from mainland China either in their country or even in other countries. Well, most of them are now wealthy and can go travelling anywhere they like. But their values of conduct are extremely low. Their discipline are awful. Whenever I encountered them, I find them really irritating, annoying, noisy, and showing disrespect to the tourist places. Well, there have been many articles showing their bad attitudes (not queuing, peeing on the public, harassing human-shaped sculptures or statues, vandalizing buildings or monuments, spitting wherever they like, etc) shared out and I couldn’t agree more. They don’t feel embarrassed by their own actions and that is what got me surprised. Something must be very wrong to their moral education in the past when they were young. Totally terrible…I’m not targeting all the Chinese nationals…but most of them!

I guess after this holiday week, the glass bridge would be extremely dirty straight away with multiple stains (of spits everywhere maybe…) or maybe even declared unsafe soon since there must be ‘thousands’ of them rushing to cross the bridge and it simply couldn’t hold the huge weight anymore. Who knows…

(Images and some information in this post are from this source: http://edition.cnn.com/2015/09/27/travel/china-glass-bridge-shiniuzhai/)

Junior Purple League 2015, a great platform to help develop Malaysia’s badminton talent.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 11, 2015 by vincentloy

Junior Purple League 2015 is a brand new badminton event in Malaysia targeted toward 13 to 18 years old junior players. It is a league running from 15th August to 18th October 2015 and is comprising of 11 participating badminton clubs of which each club will play every other club in the league. This league will serve as a curtain raiser for the Purple League, Malaysia’s first professional badminton league which will commence in this coming November for its second season. Now, the young Malaysian badminton players who wish to further excel in this particular sport could have a bright future ahead by making his or her first step in this newly-introduced junior league.

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The league would be on a mixed team format consisting of 5 matches; boy’s singles, girl’s singles, boy’s doubles, girl’s doubles and mixed doubles. Every match in a tie shall be played to the best of 5 games to 11 points. The matches will not only be played at the Sports Arena Sentosa, but also at various venues of the participating clubs. The top three teams of the league, ranked according to the highest aggregate of games won against games lost, will share the prize money pool of RM 175 000 as follows; champion will win RM 100 000, first runner-up will win RM 50 000 while second runner-up will win RM 25 000.

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Interested to watch the league? Do check out its official website at this link : http://purpleleague.com/ for all the information regarding the league which will starts in a few days. The tickets to the venues are complimentary. It has also a Facebook page at this link: https://www.facebook.com/purpleleague. Interested to join the league? Well, I encouraged you to join one of the many badminton clubs in Malaysia quick. Don’t put your time and passion on badminton to a waste. Then, you may be the one up on the court in the running for the championship of the league next year!

Well, I myself is too old for this junior league. But what about you? I like badminton. I used to play badminton quite frequently back in the olden days. Now, I have grown up and got myself busy with office works till I have to keep my exercising simple by simply just jogging for once in a week. No more badminton. But my interest in this sport never fades. I still love to watch badminton games especially the world-class tournaments. Most Malaysians adore badminton. It is one of the Olympic sport that we can say that we are good at eventhough we still couldn’t manage to win an Olympic gold medal from it. Well, at least we had two silvers, thanks to our beloved Dato’ Lee Chong Wei (in Beijing 2008 and London 2012) as well as many great achievements by the other Malaysian players in the past.

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I took the effort to produce this blog post highlighting this wonderful event not only because that I’m invited to do so but also that I find this Junior Purple League a really good platform to develop more youngsters to become top players in badminton. A fantastic event. Malaysia is currently in need of more excellent badminton players and this Junior Purple League may be an awesome kick-starter for more future badminton talents. I’m happy to promote this event and I’m glad to be part of this movement to help developing this sport in my country, Malaysia.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

Sunday, 29th March 2015. A day of mourning for Mr. Lee Kuan Yew. His state funeral today.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 29, 2015 by vincentloy

When the first Prime Minister of Singapore, Mr. Lee Kuan Yew passed away last Monday at the age of 91, Singaporeans were in deep grief and sadness over the demise of the nation’s founding father. I have also written a blog post in tribute to this great man (check out that post by just scrolling down if you are interested). In these few days, the public from all walks of life were willing to queue up to 8 hours or more (many even overnight as seen in image below) just to pay their last respect to Lee Kuan Yew in Parliament House where his coffin is placed for public memorial service. That’s a strong sign of patriotism of Singaporeans to their first leader after independence.

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Leaders from many countries across the world offered their condolences to Mr. Lee Hsien Loong (whom is the son of Lee Kuan Yew and the current Singapore’s Prime Minister) and his family. In fact, today, when Lee Kuan Yew’s state funeral will be held in the afternoon, a huge number of foreign leaders and dignitaries have confirmed their attendance as a mark of respect and a sign of how important and influential this man was to Asia and to the world. President of South Korea, Indonesia, Israel and Myanmar, Prime Minister of Japan, India, Australia, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam, King of Malaysia, Vice President of China, Former President of United States (Bill Clinton) and several others will join the state funeral.

The world has lost a great man who not only contributed so much to the success of Singapore today but also helped mentor many leaders in various countries across the world. He was simply terrific and irreplaceable. Goodbye and rest in peace, Mr. Lee Kuan Yew. Eventhough I’m a Malaysian (not Singaporean), but being a neighbour of your prosperous and great nation, I do know all the good things you have done for the country. You certainly made Singaporeans proud. The world will miss you.

Remembering Lee Kuan Yew 16 September 1923 – 23 March 2015

Look at how great Singapore is now,…all thanks to the great start and effort by Mr. Lee Kuan Yew as the country’s first Prime Minister. I’m always jealous of how great our neighbouring nation is, and how far behind Malaysia is. That’s a fact no matter how much we love and biased towards our own country, Malaysia. Why can’t our leaders act and work like him…it’s all for the sake of our country! But too bad, history can’t be changed. Singapore has become a famous and a strong developed nation, a very successful one out from nothing in the beginning, while Malaysia is lagging behind seriously right now. We can still change to improve, but our government…haiz…hopeless.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)