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ANNOUNCEMENT

I have launched a series of blog posts called Featured Mommypreneurs in collaboration with mommypreneurs (i.e. mommies entrepreneurs). Let me know if you're interested to join me to feature your products / services. :)

DISCOUNT CODES (1 March - 30 June 2017) to be used on http://www.store.unisonca.com/:
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Hotel for Dogs (2009)

Just spent the night watching Hotel for Dogs, a movie any dog lover should not miss! :D

Hotel for Dogs is a smart, funny, and heartwarming adventure movie that shows how far love and imagination can take you. Guess what? This movie's tagline is "No Stray Gets Turned Away" and there are so many adorable furry friends in the movie!! Awww!!!

Here's the movie's synopsis: Orphaned siblings, 16-year old Andi (Emma Roberts) and her 11-year old brother, Bruce (Jake T. Austin) are forbidden to keep pets by their guardians. When they decide to keep their secret pet dog, Friday, they have to find an ideal home for him. Bruce uses his engineering talents to transform an abandoned hotel into a magical dog-paradise for Friday - and eventually for all Friday's furry friends. However, when dogs' barking arouses neighbors' suspicion and being threatened by the local Animal Control Center, Andi, Bruce and their friends have to use every imagination they have to prevent the hotel from being discovered.

This is the part I like best. According to PetStyle News, many of the dogs used in this movie were rescues adopted 16 weeks before production began and trained by trainer and "Hotel for Dogs" Animal Coordinator, Mark Forbes. About 70 dogs total were used in this movie, including stand-ins. Happily, many of them found loving new homes between pre-production and filming. That is a fact that makes an awesome movie even more appealing. Read on!

WOW!

One day, when I buy my own house and work from home, I MUST have at least two dogs and two cats.
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High traffic!

Traffic to my blog is higher than usual these few days.

Why? Due to these keywords on Google Search - amp, allstars, satu malaysia lyrics.

;P


Anyway, I like the song. :)
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'Satu Malaysia' by AMP Allstars (2009)

Updates (02 September 2010): To view the video for 2010, please scroll to the end of this post.

"
Here In My Home" By MAFU (Malaysian Artistes For Unity) is good.

Now, here's one more, this time from AMP Allstars.


HAPPY 52ND MERDEKA, MALAYSIA!!!

Satu Bangsa, Satu Suara, Satu Nada, Satu Irama,
Bersama Kita Capai Semua - 1 MALAYSIA.


AMP Radio Networks embodies the spirit of 1Malaysia with its eight radio networks in four vernacular languages, reaching 11.16 million listeners weekly*.

To celebrate our country's 52nd Independence Day, we are proud to introduce 'Satu Malaysia', a song composed by our very own DJ Uno and AJ of Pop Shuvit. The song features the ‘AMP Allstars’, with the voices of 15 AMP announcers from ERA, MY FM, hitz.fm, MIX fm, LiteFM, SINAR, XFM, THR Raaga and THR Gegar.

*Source: Nielsen's Radio Audience Measurement, Sweep 1, 2009 for all people 10 years and older in Pen. Malaysia


Here's the song link from mix.fm.
 

Scroll down to view the full lyrics below the official video.

Here's the download link from hitz.FM.


Here's the official video:



Check out the song's lyrics: 

Start: 
Satu Malaysia
Rakyat Didahulukan, Pencapaian Diutamakan

 

Verse 1:
Oh indahnya 'pabila
Kita bersama
Kau, aku, kita semua
Tiada bezanya

No matter, whatever the challenge may be
We'll face it together, the stronger we'll be

*Tamil
Ondraga seinthu, endrendrum vazhvom santhosham neeranthaeram
(Together we come united as one, and live forever, our happiness is permanent)

Chorus:
Satu Bangsa
Satu Suara
Satu Nada
Satu Irama
Bersama kita capai semua
Satu Malaysia

Rap:
Satu Bangsa - We're united in music
Satu Irama - United we stand
I feel the hearts of my people when we struggle everyday to be the best that we can
We share the food that we eat, we share the words that we speak,
I say what's up? You say, "Apa cerita?"

"You hungry bro? Jom makanlah!"

Verse 2:
We go up, never go down
We go up together

*Chinese
Wo men shi yi ge ma lai xi ya (我们是一个马来西亚) (We are one Malaysia)
Wo men yong yuan zai tong yi ge jia (我们永远在同一个家) (We are one family)

Together we are strong
Tuan jie yi qi bu fen bi ci (团结一起不分彼此) (Unity with one vision)Together we are strong
Xiang qin xiang ai wan zhong yi xin (相亲相爱万众一心) (We love each other and we share a vision)United we stay, forever and ever
That's the way it's gonna be

Repeat Chorus (x1)

Bridge Sketch:
Ean: Dude, JJ!
JJ: Yes Ean.
Ean: You know what part is this in the song?
JJ: Yes, it's the part where they go one key higher.
Ean: Okay, we'll be quiet now okay?
JJ: Yeah, 'coz we can't sing but everyone else, one key higher!
 

Repeat Chorus (x2)
 
End:

Eh, dah habis? Saya nyanyi bila?
Eh engkau dah tua dah.
Engkau dengan aku tak nyanyi.
Tepuk tangan je.


******************************

Check out AMP All Stars - Satu Malaysia Music Video (2010)!



8

I'm online ;)

My face appeared on Spicy Corner's website. LOL! I cropped the portion, shown above. ;P

Also, my review about My Spicy Corner appeared on their revamped website as well. Click the "Media" tab.

Join them on Twitter - @SpicyCorner & Facebook - Spicy Corner.


My Twitter reply to @DiGiLovetoSave appeared on their simple video presso done to cap their journey (DiGi's Love to Save Campaign) off. Again, as shown above. Check out this link for the video.

;P

Let me sign off with my favorite songs of the week: Little of Your Time (Maroon 5), I Got A Feeling (Black Eyed Peas), Fallin' For You (Colbie Caillat), I Know You Want Me (Pitbull).

;)

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[Friday-24] Murderer (2009)

Murderer (2009) is a Hong Kong crime-mystery-thriller film, starring Aaron Kwok as the "murderer".

Aaron Kwok is Ling Guang, a police detective involved in an investigation of a series of gruesome murders known as the "bloodletting murders". The problem is, as he was probing further into the case, every piece of evidence seemed to pin him down as the prime suspect.

Okay, so how did the film end? To me, it ended in a rather ridiculously stupid way. Yes, the movie did end with a twist, I'd say, an unexpected twist. But, of all twist-endings, this?

You might want to know whether Aaron Kwok is really the murderer in this movie. Hmmm... it's hard to say. You've to watch it.

Was he framed? Hmmm... partly.

Was he criminally insane? Hmmm... well, it's not really that way.

Was his acting convincing? Hmmm... I think he tried too hard to get into this character. So, his acting became rather unnatural and weird at times. I'd say he overreacted in certain scenes. But, he did a good job with that menacing, cold stare and odd-looking, blank facial expression.

The way this movie was shot reminded me of Body 19, a Thai horror film. I think the filmmakers of "Murderer" tried to incorporate some brilliant pointers from these excellent Thai filmmakers - in terms of detailed portrayal of splattered blood, gore, and flashbacks. However, I'd say, it didn't work out brilliantly and it's really below expectation.

One thing, it'd better if they change the color of the dye or whatever that was used in the bloody scenes. It's really too fake! If you've watched Thai & Korean slashers, you'll spot the tremendous difference of the color of blood. It makes a big difference, seriously.

Anyway, I won't recommend this movie. If you insist of watching it, good luck then. :P
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Carbonara Turkey Ham @ D'Valley, Plaza Glomac

Carbonara Turkey Ham
I chose shell pasta, easier to eat. LOL!


Chicken Salad
Not-so-filling appetizer.

Good lunch, near where I stay, on a breezy Saturday noon. Perfect!

Check out my first and second visits!
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Harmony-seeking Idealists' Love

* Takes a relatively long time until their counterpart has figured out that they have developed a romantic interest in him/her.

* They only show their feelings when they are very sure of themselves and the prospects for the relationship.

* In matters of love, they incredulously notice affairs of others and can't imagine how anyone can play that furiously with their own and the feelings of others.

* Very consistent and faithful person - sometimes it takes a very long time to find them.


* Too reserved and hesitate too long before they really trust someone to open up to him/her, thus making them very difficult for potential prospects.

* Once they have committed themselves to a partner, it is for life without turning back.

* Since a relationship is that important to them, one of their most important goals in life is to keep the given promise. Their obligation is sacred and they expect their partner to feel the same way.

* Because it was difficult for them to trust, they have a real problem forgiving a betrayal of confidence like an affair as well as other behaviors that they see as treachery.

* They run the risk of disappointment and hurt if they give their love to someone who wants no part of intimacy. For them, it is either all or nothing.

Again, the last line is very, very accurate.

Check out the original article here.


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Harmony-seeking Idealists' Career

* Prefers a quiet work environment where they can intensively deal with responsibilities and are not disturbed by too many people and repeated distractions.

* Need a lot of time to dwell on their thoughts, to put them into words, and let their ideas take shape.

* Don't like being overloaded because it is important to deal with things thoroughly.

* Capability to concentrate is unusually great and very often become engrossed in something and forget everything around them.


* Have a very strong insight into human nature and enjoy dealing with people - having a real sense for their motivations, needs, and abilities.

* Extremely sensitive and their social competences are developed above average, thus having no problems working with people or being a team member.

* Primarily surround themselves with persons who are similarly profound and eclectic. However, during the working day, they abhor thoughtless, superficial, and insensitive colleagues.
 


The last line is profoundly accurate. ;)

Check out the original article here.


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I'm an HI - Harmony-seeking Idealist

Adjectives which describe an HI: introverted, theoretical, emotional, planning, idealistic, harmony-seeking, understanding, peace-loving, sensitive, quiet, sympathetic, conscientious, dogged, complicated, inconspicuous, warm-hearted, complex, imaginative, inspiring, helpful, demanding, communicative, reserved, vulnerable

* Characterized by a complex personality and an abundance of thoughts and feelings.

* Expect a lot of themselves and of others, have a strong understanding of human nature, and very good judges of character.

* Reserved and confide their thoughts and feelings to very few people they trust.

* Deeply hurt by rejection or criticism.

* Find conflict situations unpleasant and prefer harmonious relationships, hesitate for some time before raising unsatisfactory issues and, when they do, they make every effort not to hurt anyone as a result.

* Have a lively fantasy, often an almost clairvoyant intuition and are often very creative.

* Excellent problem solvers, like to get to the root of things, have a natural curiosity, and a thirst for knowledge.

* Practically oriented, well organized, and in a position to tackle complex situations in a structured and carefully considered manner.

* Loyal and reliable; a permanent relationship is very important to them, seldom fall in love head over heels nor do they like quick affairs, find it very difficult to clearly show their affection although their feelings are deep and sincere.

* As far as their circle of friends is concerned, their motto is: less is more! As far as new contacts are concerned, they are approachable to only a limited extent; prefer a few, close friendships.

All the points above are SO VALID!!! Especially those in yellow. ;)

Check out the original article here.
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Live to eat to live to eat...

Here you go!

Boulevard Kopitiam at Plaza Glomac (SS7/19, beside Sterling Condominium, opposite Kelana Centre Point).

Top Left, Clockwise: Roasted Chicken, Nasi Lemak Sotong, Yang Chow Fried Rice, Nasi Lemak Ayam Berempah, Steamed Chicken

Top Left, Clockwise: Dry Curry Mee, Fish Ball Soup, Chicken Sar Hor Fun, Fried Mee, Curry Mee

Western Food

Top Left, Clockwise: Sirloin Steak with Vegetables, Mash Potato & Corn (D'Valley Cafe & Bistro at Plaza Glomac, behind Boulevard Kopitiam mentioned above), KFC's Macaroni with Cheese & Chicken Meatball, IKEA's Meatball & Fries
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Spice UP your day with Sub of the Day™

Looks so good!
0

101 reasons of uncertainties.....

I don't reveal much of myself through this blog for quite a couple of months. I stay behind the scene, I watch the "show"; I'm a good girl who stays out of trouble. But now, I take a short break from keeping a low profile because I've reasons for that.

Yeah, it's true. Nothing changes but everything's different. That's the beauty of daily dilemma.

The question is: Am I happy? I guess so. I'm happy that I'm still employed and being challenged to stay competitive and competent. Work has become the number one thing in my current life, undeniably.


But, am I happy? Happy as in blissful, grateful, and meaningful. To this question, I've 101 reasons of uncertainties.

I watched "UP" and I can't forget this mailbox with Carl & Ellie's hand prints. For heaven's sake, I can't spoil the movie. Go watch it, quick. Just remember not to wail. I almost did.

I think I need the chance to love and be loved. Is this too much?

Someone said, "Men always want to be a woman's first love. That is their clumsy vanity. We women have a more subtle instinct about things. What we like is to be a man's last romance."


Then, another one said,



Here comes the uncertainties.


Because, it's called...

LOVE


2

Movie: UP (2009)

Wow... 

*sniff* 

Awww... 

I tried very, very hard to hold back tears, especially during the first 45 minutes of the movie. Good thing that I watched it in 3D. With the help of the 3D "goggles", I managed to force myself to stay calm and savor every meaningful detail of the movie - sweet memories, cherished moments, adorable characters, quirky liners, instant humor, and most importantly, educational and meaningful values about love - husband & wife, parents & children, human beings & animals. 

Husband & wife (Carl & Ellie): That's how I envision my life would be if I've a spouse - sweet and loving. Well, I don't wanna spoil it for you. Mark my words, pay fullest attention to the first quarter of the movie. 

Parents & children or rather an old man & a young kid (Carl & Russell): They're the most adorable pair of adventurers to date! 

Human beings & animals: This has been and always will be either heart-wrenching or touching. 

To all sensitive and sentimental souls out there, you're gonna be stirred UP mentally and emotionally when you watch this movie. You'll rethink and hopefully, reset your priorities in life. At least, I do. Good luck to me and you. :)

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Movie: Orphan (2009)

I guess I don't need to elaborate much. It's all about an adoption that goes awry because there's something wrong with Esther.

In a nutshell, here's what "Orphan" is about. After Kate delivered a stillborn child, she and her husband, John adopted Esther, a 9-year old girl from an orphanage. Little do they know that Esther is hiding a horrible secret behind her sweet façade.

The couple already has two biological children, Daniel and Max. Daniel doesn't like Esther but Max (mute & deaf) is thrilled to have an elder sister in the family.

Everything seems to be fine with the family until bad things begin to happen whenever Esther is around.

Isabelle Fuhrman (Esther) gave me the creeps throughout the entire movie, especially during the final 30 minutes or so. She's really a little devil in disguise. When she's sweet, demure, and polite, she's such an angel. When she throws tantrums and manipulates everyone around her, even to the extent of being murderous, her calm and eerie stare sends shivers down your spine instantly.

This movie has a good and unexpected twist-ending that explains why a 9-year old girl could inflict such terrible harm to everyone around her. Sit back for the first 5 minutes of the credits to view the extra explanation given by the filmmakers.

Here's an interview with Vera Farmiga (Kate), Peter Sarsgaard (John) and Isabelle Furhman (Esther).
4

Norwegian Slasher Movie: Cold Prey 2 (Fritt Vilt II)

Do you know recognize these slasher icons? Freddy Krueger from A Nightmare on Elm Street, Jason Voorhees from Friday the 13th, and Michael Myers from Halloween? If you recognize them, good. I'll spare you from reading "What is a Slasher Movie?" kinda explanation. However, if you're trying real hard to figure them out, read this good article: Slasher Movies 101. :)

Okay, back to Cold Prey 2 or Fritt Vilt II, a Norwegian slasher movie - a pretty standard one as well.

First, every slasher has a dangerously-armed killer - a rather muscular male, masked, psychotic, and mercilessly violent. Cold Prey 2's killer is called "The Mountain Man".

Second, in slashers, people are murdered horribly by the killer without the need of valid reasons. If there is a reason, I'd say that the dead were at the wrong place, at the wrong time. Most of the time, their death is gruesome, graphical, and disturbing because that's how a slasher movie should be. In Cold Prey 2, people died - almost all of them - you don't need to guess much.

Third, there'll be one or two survivors - mostly female; this female is the heroine of the movie whereby she'll have face-off scenes with the psychotic male killer. In Cold Prey 2, Jannicke is the courageous heroine who needs to face the horror of her nightmare after her friends are killed by "The Mountain Man". Worse, she has to face him twice.

Get ready to be jerked from your seat by these standard slasher scare flicks - shadowy corners, dark rooms, sudden loud noises, and eerie music score. You may also enjoy nail-biting moments when "The Mountain Man" is supposed to be nearby and yet you can't figure out his whereabouts. There's not much blood and gore though, maybe the Malaysian censorship board has done their job again. :S

Its ending is rather predictable. However, the prospect of another sequel is unclear. Based on the trend of slashers, the killer may come back alive again in the next sequel even if he's dead without much logical explanation. All hell shall break loose then. Let's see how it goes. :)

Watch its trailer:


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My rainbow is shaded black

Your rainbow is shaded black.


What it says about you? You are a powerful person. You appreciate mystery. You may meet people who are afraid of you.

Find the colors of your rainbow at spacefem.com


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I'm waiting...

...patiently, in a sense. Passively, in another sense. Isn't this so true?

Not everything makes sense and sometimes that is the only thing that ever makes sense.

So, here's how I feel right now.



In fact, everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it. I believe the right one will see this. So, just think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy because life is about change. Sometimes it's painful, sometimes it's beautiful, but most of the time, it's both.

More than anything else, I believe it's our decisions,
not the conditions of our lives, that determine our destiny.
~Anthony Robbins~

Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice;
it is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.
~William Jennings Bryan~

Please let me know where's mine...
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Happy 2nd Birthday, Bloggie!

Glad that you're 2 years old today, Bloggie!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!


Stay strong and grow, grow, grow!

\(^.^)/

3

Movie: No Reservations

Watched this DVD at home - No Reservations.

Here's what it's about: Master chef Kate Armstrong (Catherine Zeta-Jones) lives her life like she runs her kitchen at a trendy Manhattan eatery with a no-nonsense intensity that both captivates and intimidates everyone around her.

Kate's perfectionist nature is put to the test when she "inherits" her 9-year-old niece Zoe (Abigail Breslin), while contending with a brash new sous-chef who joins her staff. High-spirited and freewheeling, Nick Palmer (Aaron Eckhart) couldn't be more different from Kate, yet the chemistry between them is undeniable.

Rivalry becomes romance, but Kate will have to learn to express herself beyond the realm of her kitchen if she wants to connect with Zoe and find true happiness with Nick.

Find detailed synopsis here.

This movie's tagline is rather curt - "Life isn't always made to order". Well, it's very true. This 2007 romantic drama focuses on how Kate tries to get her life back in order when her usual no-nonsense, contained, and reserved self is challenged to face her niece and new staff, Nick. She has to receive the fact that the whole world doesn't revolve around her and she needs to be open to face new challenges regardless of how these challenges may disrupt her very orderly life.

It's a good movie to enjoy on a Sunday afternoon. The chemistry among the three main stars is good. :)
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[Friday-23] The Screen At Kamchanod

NO, don't watch this movie. I know this sounds harsh but it's the truth. Wait, don't get yourself confused with another similar Thai horror movie called Coming Soon, which is also about ghosts coming out from / going into the screen, whichever way.

But then, a movie with an interesting synopsis and that tempting tagline, "A legend based on true events" doesn't necessary end up great.

Here's the interesting (supposedly) synopsis:

In 1987, four outdoor film projectionists were hired to screen a movie in the forest of Kamchanod, Udon Thani Province. They were wondering about the absence of their audience. As the screening came to an end, a group of "people" emerged from the forest and lined up in front of the screen, and disappeared as mysteriously as they had appeared out of nowhere.

In 2007, Dr. Yuth, who's obsessed with finding the truth behind the newspaper report on the incident began to conduct his own experiment to prove the theory with his girlfriend (Orn), Roj (a homeless kid), a journalist and his wife. As they venture deeper into finding the "truth", they jeopardize their sanity as supernatural forces toy with their daily living and they begin to see more dead than living people all the time.

The synopsis sounds great and interesting enough to draw horror movie lovers' attention. But, in reality, the acting, storyline, and plots are a total mess!

I believe the filmmakers themselves are confused with what they want to present to the audience. The main plot is about how the group proves that the legend exists and this works just fine. However, the subplots, which are supposed to add some weight to the movie turn out to be lame and confusing. The flashbacks are weak and fail to join the missing pieces together.

The only thing that keeps the audience in the cinema are cheap scare flicks such as the building tension of realizing a ghost is appearing soon and sound effects. Haha. I still wonder how I went through the ordeal of watching a very lousy movie. :S
2

Movie: District 9 (2009)

Disclaimer: You'll find some spoilers in this article. Kindly discontinue reading if you wish to stay in suspense. I've warned you. Read on at your own risk. :)

To tell the truth, I didn't know anything about this sci-fi movie called
DISTRICT 9 until early August 2009. With two weeks into screening, I don't even bother to search for its review or theatrical trailers / video clips or anything about it.

Why?


First, when I saw the movie's theatrical poster with that large alien spacecraft hovering atop buildings and the "NO HUMANS ALLOWED" signboard, I thought it's just another lame comedy movie.

Second, after watching Knowing (March 2009) and The Day The Earth Stood Still (December 2008), I don't quite accept the presence of biblical connotations with scientific elements together in a movie. Also, Cloverfield's humongous monster in the end of the movie irked me.

So, I've zero plan to watch District 9. No more lame sci-fi please.

However, a simple synopsis caught my attention to re-list it on my Must-Watch Movie List. Here it is: Set in Johannesburg, South Africa, this movie is a "Cloverfield"-type sci-fi about an extraterrestrial race that is forced to live in slum-like conditions on Earth and suddenly finds a friend in a government agent who is exposed to their biotechnology.

District 9 is produced by Peter Jackson (best known for The Lord of the Rings trilogy) and directed by Neill Blomkamp. Sharlto Copley (photo on the right) plays Wikus Van De Merwe, the protagonist.

In fact, District 9 has been touted the most exciting and thrilling movie of the year, to which I agreed whole-heartedly. I would say, this is the most underestimated movie of the year 2009.

With a tight budget of NZ$30 million and a whole lot of unknown South African actors, Peter Jackson, a New Zealand filmmaker, producer, and screenwriter has successfully proven to Hollywood that great movies don't necessarily need big budget. Great movies don't really need big-time actors as well. Do you know who's Sharlto Copley? No. You get the point.
More about Sharlto Copley can be found here.

Most importantly, the story telling is brilliant! The movie was not shot with Cloverfield's shaky camcorder-shot style entirely. It was shot like a mockumentary with a heightened sense of realism with interviews and such, something like REC, the early 2009 Spanish thriller.

Watching District 9, you can feel the pain of witnessing how awful and brutal mankind could be when it comes to the act of "sacrificing" anything, anyhow in the name of science.

This is how the aliens look like, they are called "prawns" due to their resemblance to the crustacean. This is the true nature of mankind - labeling anything lesser than mankind with unimaginable names and treating them like scumbag.

Here's Wikus during the final scene of the movie. Kudos to New Zealand's Weta Workship, the special effect team who did a brilliant job with Wikus and the rest of the body-parts-flying scenes. Have you watched Black Sheep? Weta Workship did those gruesome body parts scene as well. :)

The ending of the movie was rather comforting after being embroiled in a solid 1.5 hours of tension and hatred towards mankind's brutality and apartheid allegories.

I'm glad that the mothership managed to take off.

I'm glad that the aliens' population kept growing despite being held at their new detention camp and District 9 was demolished.

All in all, this is an awesome film, not to be missed by anyone.

Here's an excellent review by Horrorphile.net.

Here's the trailer:

0

Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult

Jodi Picoult's "Nineteen Minutes".

I found the synopsis from
here.

In this emotionally charged novel, Jodi Picoult delves beneath the surface of a small town to explore what it means to be different in our society.

In Sterling, New Hampshire, 17-year-old high school student Peter Houghton has endured years of verbal and physical abuse at the hands of classmates. His best friend, Josie Cormier, succumbed to peer pressure and now hangs out with the popular crowd that often instigates the harassment. One final incident of bullying sends Peter over the edge and leads him to commit an act of violence that forever changes the lives of Sterling's residents.

Even those who were not inside the school that morning find their lives in an upheaval, including Alex Cormier. The superior court judge assigned to the Houghton case, Alex — whose daughter, Josie, witnessed the events that unfolded — must decide whether or not to step down. She's torn between presiding over the biggest case of her career and knowing that doing so will cause an even wider chasm in her relationship with her emotionally fragile daughter. Josie, meanwhile, claims she can't remember what happened in the last fatal minutes of Peter's rampage. Or can she? And Peter's parents, Lacy and Lewis Houghton, ceaselessly examine the past to see what they might have said or done to compel their son to such extremes.

Rich with psychological and social insight, Nineteen Minutes is a riveting, poignant, and thought-provoking novel that has at its center a haunting question. Do we ever really know someone?

******************************

Reading this book is like watching a movie with a lot of flashback scenes and deep portrayal of human interaction. My favorite quote from the book at the moment is: H = R/E, or happiness equals reality divided by expectation. E was always a number, since you could not divide by zero.

Updates: I'm done with reading in September 2009. Here's a blog post about my favorite gems from the book. :D
0

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009)

When All Else Fails, They Don't

G. I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra - I don't need to explain much. If you grew up in the 1980's, the glorious era of Transformers and G.I. Joe, even if you're not an avid fan, you'd know who or what the Joes are.

I won't compare G.I. Joe with Transformers because they're not really from the same genre, at least in G.I. Joe, they don't mention about extraterrestrial beings, unlike Transformers.


Personally, I like all scenes involving Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow. Ninjas are cool - they are either black or white, evil or good, no in-between. :) In this case, Storm Shadow, the white one is the bad Ninja who's serving the baddies.

Baroness is an interesting character - she looks intelligent and efficient. But with painful reasons. Zartan is a minor character that I believe will have much role in G.I. Joe's sequel. Pay attention to the last scene whereby he's whistling while seated in the President's office. :P

Duke and Ripcord - They look fresh, I don't really remember them apart from their stunt in Paris while wearing accelerator suits.

Snake Eyes, Scarlett, and Breaker - the rest of the Joe team.

Hmmm... To me, G.I. Joe is not as tense and as emotional as Terminator Salvation and Transformers 2. There are physical combats, fiery blasts, city in havoc, funny liners, scientific/near-future terminologies - these are expected elements. However, it's still entertaining as a weekend movie. :)

Check out Updated: Must-Watch Movie List (May - Aug 2009).
4

Bananas Forever (Part 4) - Chicken Leg Stew with Bananas

Note: This photo is taken with my mobile phone from the Wellness Magazine, Premium Issue, 2007

Ingredients:
* 1 chicken leg - for 1-2 persons - skinned or not, depends on you
* 1 tablespoon of curry powder
* 1 tablespoon of chili powder
* 1 medium red apple - diced
* 1 medium green apple - diced
* 2 medium bananas - chopped into bite-sized chunks
* 1 medium yellow onion, fresh ginger & garlic cloves - chopped finely
* 200ml of chicken broth
* 100ml of plain yogurt
* Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
Marinate chicken leg with curry powder, chili powder, and pepper for at least 30 minutes. Set aside.

Place chopped onion-ginger-garlic, apples, and bananas into a deep microwave oven. Place the marinated chicken leg on top. Bake in microwave oven for 15-20 minutes. Take out, add broth and yogurt and stew for another 15-20 minutes.

Serve hot.

Check out:
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3
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Bananas Forever (Part 3) - Bananas Risotto

Note: This photo is taken with my mobile phone from the Wellness Magazine, Premium Issue, 2007

Ingredients:
* 2 cups of risotto rice (for 2 persons) - washed
* 4 medium bananas - sliced into round pieces
* 1 medium yellow onion, 2 garlic cloves, basil - chopped finely
* Leek, green asparagus - chopped into 1/2 inch strips
* 500 ml of chicken broth
* 2 medium tomatoes - quartered
* 4 tablespoons of olive oil
* Parmesan cheese
* Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
Slowly boil chicken broth over medium heat. Heat olive oil in a deep frying pan, add onion and garlic and stir-fry for 3-5 minutes. Add leek and rice and stir occasionally. Add half of the broth and bring to a boil. Then, reduce heat and let it simmer.

When rice absorbs the liquid, pour in the other half of the broth and boil slowly for another 20-25 minutes. During the last 5 minutes, add in bananas and tomatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Turn off heat and sprinkle Parmesan cheese over risotto. Mix and serve hot.

Check out:
Part 1 | Part 2
| Part 4
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Bananas Forever (Part 2) - Bananas with Sesame

Note: This photo is taken with my mobile phone from the Wellness Magazine, Premium Issue, 2007

Ingredients for bananas:
* 5 medium bananas - halved
* 3 eggs - whisked
* Flour
* Sesame seed
* Vegetable oil or any kind of oil for frying

Ingredients for mango marmalade:
* 3 mangoes - chopped into bite-sized chunks
* 60g table sugar
* A small cube of fresh ginger - chopped coarsely
* Water

Directions for bananas:
Heat oil. Coat banana halves with flour, eggs, and sesame seeds. Fry until lightly browned. Drained on paper.

Directions for mango marmalade:
Boil sugar, ginger, and water on medium heat. Stir until liquid becomes dense and starts to become slightly browned. Add mango and remove from heat. Set aside to cool. Serve with bananas.

Check out:
Part 1 | Part 3
| Part 4
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Bananas Forever (Part 1) - Bananas and Smoked Turkey Salad

Note: This photo is taken with my mobile phone from the Wellness Magazine, Premium Issue, 2007

Ingredients:

* Lettuce
* 4 medium bananas - chopped into bite-sized chunks
* 3 pieces of toast - cubed
* 3 tablespoons of olive oil
* A handful of walnuts - roasted
* Smoked turkey breast
* Plain yogurt
* Vinegar, salt, and pepper to taste

Directions:
Mix everything in a salad bowl, serve either chilled or at room temperature.

Check out:
Part 2 | Part 3
| Part 4

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Lunch @ Pizza Uno, Centrepoint, Bandar Utama

Lunch with Naoko, Windy, Chris, and Kang Ming at Pizza Uno, Centrepoint, Bandar Utama.

:)


Cappuccino
See the little cookie on the left side of the cup?


Mexicanna
Onions, cherry tomatoes, pepperoni, cheese, herbs.

Aglio Olio
Garlic, olive oil, basil, parsley.


Carbonara
Uno twist to this classic sauce with beef bacon & cream.

Ravioli
Chicken & mushroom.


Napoletana
Rich tomato sauce, garlic, herbs, olive oil, Parmesan.

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Movie: Overheard

窃听风云 (Qie Ting Feng Yun / Overheard) is a Hong Kong crime thriller and it's all about crime, injustice, murder, vengeance, and death. There are minimal sexual inferences in certain scenes. All in all, this movie's focus is the drama of human life with all sorts of interest conflicts and interpersonal relationships.

Lau Ching Wan, Louis Koo, and Daniel Wu are the three main stars in this movie. The rest of the male actors are veterans whom you always see in TVB series - impressive.

The first 45 minutes of the movie was rather slow and depressing. The momentum began to build up gradually towards a very dramatic ending when the supposedly good cops began to make wrong decisions one after another. The wrong decisions that they made cost their life and worse, their family members' life. Such is the ugliness of tragedy, portrayed in a rather dramatic way.

This movie is recommended if you wish to watch a
no-nonsense Hong Kong movie of good quality. :)

Here's a review.

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