My August 2019 Adventures

Its been bothering me a while on how to change up these adventure posts because they are no longer weekly and I have no intention of making them weekly especially because biweekly collides a lot with the What’s Up already and there is some overlap there. So, the solution to it all is to just make it a monthly segments. It gives me time to get some of the recap posts together and also gives it a little more content to work with. This will be set for the last day of each month starting with this month’s recap of August!

Let’s get things started!

Fantasia Festival 2019 Wraps – Up (Aug 2)

Every year’s Fantasia Festival is a more and more ambitious feat as I try to pile in as much as I can and work with as much of the stuff as I can. This year was a bit different. It was a lot more time at the festival as less screeners offered off site but there was the screening room that I took advantage of to get conflicting films watched and round out the schedule better. Other than some hiccups on Day 1 for myself getting the pass, things actually panned out pretty well. Tallying 24 films (as shown in Instagram post above) and 6 short films.

My Top 5 films of Fantasia would  probably go to :

  • White Snake
  • Daniel Isn’t Real
  • Riot Girls
  • Paradise Hills
  • The Fable

Honorable Mentions: 1BR, Harpoon, Aquaslash

If you may have missed any of the reviews, you can find it all HERE.

Hiking: Parc National de Plaisance

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Festival season is done so its time to get back to some hiking and taking advantage of the outdoors before winter hits us in a little while. Weather is already starting to cool down a smidge, at least in the mornings. We went for an easy hike to Parc National de Plaisance and to explore their boardwalk (which seems super new or just newly redone) over the marshlands. We totaled around 6.5 to 7 kilometres of walking.

You can check out the recap of it HERE.

Girls Day Out

Sugar Marmalade

Its been a busy summer for everyone so after a few months, me and my girl friends finally found time to meet up for an overdue get together to catch up on everything. We had brunch at Petino’s in La Prairie area and then went to do some cake shopping for a bride to be in our group then went to have a beautiful afternoon snack at Sugar Marmalade. I had the herbal jelly above which I’ve been craving for a while.

Finding More Non-Dairy Choices

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I don’t always post about these new things I find at the grocery store usually but I think that some of these brands do deserve a nice little mention for going the non-dairy selections. The next to join the selection which I found is Magnum which has a very cool texture especially the ice cream is not as hard as the normal ice cream bars but feels like soft ice cream covered by rich Belgian chocolate. I liked these ones a lot. Its a bit more expensive than the Haagen Daz ones even on sale.

Toronto Weekend Getaway: Fan Expo Canada 2019

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Fan Expo Canada was a 4 day event where we met up with my awesome blogathon co-host for our annual Toronto meet-up to check out this event for its 25th anniversary for Saturday and Sunday. Went to a ton of panels and didn’t have enough time to check out every thing and it was definitely an adventure. You can check out the recap HERE and the general trip shopping haul HERE.

Gardening Update

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It feels like its been a while since I last talked about it (because I realized that I decided to do the format change at the beginning of August. Either way, I lost some plants (zucchini) and then some are doing quite well. We had some harvests. My mom who is the gardening expert came by while I was away at Fan Expo and told me that my garden needed to level up on the soil which has me thinking to raise up the sides of the garden a little and fill it with soil. Its something that has to be done since the wood around it are starting to rot and break apart. Lots of projects to deal with. Yet again, I have to reiterate the importance to not buying your house in the winter where there is heavy snow and you can’t see the condition of both the garden and the roof which the latter is 80% solved with the gutters still needing to be changed while the garden is a constant nuisance of crap to deal with. Either way, one step at a time and soon, we will get this house stuff settled once and for all.

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Ending on a positive note, if there’s anything I’m proud of, its my flower garden which has really grown well. I just need to get some more mulch to cover it up properly and tend to some weeds but overall, it looks really nice and has a nice group of flowers and alternate in blooming season so the whole summer has been colorful.

Cute Kitty Pic

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That’s it for this August adventures!
Its a new frequency but same format!
Hopefully you will enjoy it!

The Fanatic (Advanced Screening 2019)

The Fanatic (2019)

the fanatic

Director (co-writer): Fred Durst

Cast: John Travolta, Devon Sawa, Ana Golja, Jacob Grodnik, James Paxton, Josh Richman, Jessica Uberuaga, Marta Gonzalez Rodin

It was a really nice opportunity to see the advanced screening of The Fanatic at Fan Expo Canada before its limited release on August 30th. Suffice to say that past a certain point, John Travolta’s films haven’t quite been on my radar or just haven’t quite peaked my interest. The most recent film that I saw of his probably was The Taking of Pelham 123 and I don’t remember liking that one a lot. However, The Fanatic was one that as a group, all of three of us did want to go see but kept our expectations fairly neutral especially for myself, since I hadn’t researched much about it in the first place.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk about The Fanatic. Its a thriller about an autistic fan called Moose, played by John Travolta who finds an opportunity to meet his favorite horror film actor Hunter Dunbar, played by Devon Sawa. However, it becomes a missed opportunity due to bad timing and gets rejected. In the effort to try to get it, he asks for a friend Leia, played by Ana Golja who introduces him to a star house hunting app where he manages to find the address and goes over and over again, hoping to finally get the autograph being shot down each time until he “nukes the boundaries” (quoted from the movie).

There’s no doubt that John Travolta is a great actor and in this role as he portrays a autistic man and a hardcore movie fan, he does a great job. I’m sure any role like this will garner some kind of criticism but for myself, its the awkward moments and the whole idea that in his mind, he doesn’t realize how far he had gone over the boundaries that makes it more poignant to watch (as the audience reaction seemed to reflect as well). Moose is a really great character in that sense and its a role that I’ve never seen John Travolta play and creates a contrast in his filmography. The performances of The Fanatic make the movie thrilling possibly and seems a bit of a character study especially for Moose as most of the time is spent with him however, Hunter Dunbar is done well with Devon Sawa who really is the victim here but his strong personality turns himself into a bully of sorts and doesn’t give him a lot to sympathize.

Overall, The Fanatic has its pros and cons. Its strengths are in its characters and actors ability to excel in the two leading roles here. The script also tries to capture the details to sculpt a clever twist ending which didn’t quite work in my case but for my husband who didn’t remember a little detail might have been more shocking. It has its thrills and thriller elements but its a lot more of a drama and puts a lot to question about the society as sometimes unjust things happen and unexplained things also occur and those who are in the spotlight will have these situations happen and the difficulty of defining the right and wrong of it all. Is it a great film? Not exactly but there’s an indie element here to give it some depth to ponder at least.

 

Toronto & Fan Expo Canada 2019 Haul

On a much needed weekend getaway, Toronto and Fan Expo Canada 2019 was a really great time to say the least. Arriving in the early afternoon on Friday, we all had the day to just get into town and settle into the Airbnb. My to-do list had quite a few things including Vaughan Mills to check out a few stores and stock up on stuff on sale as well as hit T&T Supermarket for groceries like breakfast and snacks and stuff to bring home and of course, taking a stop at LCBO to see what there is new there to check out.

Uniqlo

Uniqlo

Some very normal stuff here. I was at Uniqlo looking for T-Shirts and found one. I don’t know any of the manga that they were doing T-shirts for but I liked this one the most. Other than that, I was looking for tank tops and whatnot. Its a really good selection over here so I picked up some stuff that I think will be good.

Disney Store

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While there was a lot of cool plushes at this Disney store, there was no doubt that Sebastian was the one that caught my eye mostly because it was the 30th anniversary new arrival that the sales rep said just got to the store that week. Plus, I already have a lonely Flounder sitting next to my bed and have been meaning to wrap up The Little Mermaid collection.

LCBO

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We also make a stop at LCBO (or whichever provincial alcohol store) whenever we head out of town to try and find something that we can’t find here. One of the things is the VQA Niagara Peninsula always has more choices and then there’s a lot more selection for the ciders. We bought a few more than these three but over the time on the trip, it was consumed between us. I had the Queen Street 501 that I had already written about before on a Wine Recap and we also had the Molson Cider as well as a few flavors from the Crazy Uncle collection other than the root beer, an orange crush version, cream soda version and lemonade version. These three are what made it back: Smirnoff Sangria (red – which means I won’t be drinking it but might give it a sip to try), Thornbury Village Craft Apple Cider and a Riesling white wine.

FAN EXPO CANADA 2019

If you didn’t catch my Fan Expo recap, I didn’t have a lot of time to do much wandering and shopping during the event so really only went through the North Building and didn’t look at any of the retailers or artist alley in the South Building.

Black Fawn Distribution

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I realized that Black Fawn Distribution was going to be there really close to when I decided to head out. Luckily, they were in the North building and we had time to do that on Saturday and they had the movies that I was looking for since they haven’t been to Fantasia in a year or two (I think). We did talk to them and they are hoping to be at Fantasia next year so crossing my fingers for that. Either way, they had a whole signing thing going on so I managed to sneak back during the afternoon between some lining up to get The Heretics signed but didn’t realize that on Sunday they also had signing for I’ll Take Your Dead so that one only has the director that signed. Looking forward to watching these as always since I’ve always liked Black Fawn films and appreciated what they’d do for indie horror films.

Myth Hawker Travelling Bookstore

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What’s really impressive about Fan Expo is the amount of authors and books that are sold there. Some big publishers are there also. Its incredibly amazing which makes me want to slap myself a little for not trying to find more time to go through South Building but then, where we were had a lot of choices too and they had this one: Myth Hawker Travelling Bookstore which had a lot of books that looked and sounded really good when I read their synopsis. In the end, I went back to pick up this Asian sci-fi and fantasy anthology called Where the Stars Rise. The premise and such caught my eye right away so I’m excited to check this out after my string of reading commitments is done.

Aside from this haul, we did get a free poster of The Fanatic from the advanced screening. We also each got a free Fan Expo T-Shirt from past expos that were given out. I skipped sharing T&T Supermarket stuff as there’s nothing too extraordinary except that I bought moon cakes in anticipation for the upcoming Midautumn Festival and stocked up on some drinks and such.

That’s it for this Toronto/Fan Expo haul!!
Did you go to Fan Expo Canada?