Double Feature: Astro Boy (2009) & When in Rome (2010)

And we’re back with another double feature!

In the neverending quest to catch up with Netflix and diminish the outstanding titles on my Netflix list before they vanish from selection, I’ve decided to choose movies primarily already on the list whenever I watch something which lead me to trying out a new way than the normal alphabetical approach and that’s to choose a common factor between films, mostly director or actor/actress in whichever role. I honestly don’t know how long this can go for but from the preliminary test, I have at least 20 movies drafted in so we’re in for a ride. I’m liking this new way as it gives variety.

This time will be a lovely Kristen Bell double feature with Astro Boy and When in Rome!

Astro Boy (2009)

Astro Boy

Director: David Bowers

Voice Cast: Freddie Highmore, Charlize Theron, Nicolas Cage, Donald Sutherland, Bill Nighy, Kristen Bell

When an android replica of a boy is rejected by his aggrieved creator, he goes off to find his own identity in an adventure that would make him the greatest hero of his time. –IMDB

While I can’t hate on animated films. Astro Boy really is quite average. Back when this was announced, I had my doubts and I was also travelling when it came out so I never caught it in theatres. A lot of the story here is quite generic and its not very exciting. However, the art is quite nice plus the world is very pretty with lots of colors. The characters are brought alive by its immense talent behind the voices. Kristen Bell does a great job but we also have Bill Nighy as the scientist and Nicolas Cage as the dad and of course, Donald Sutherland as the villain. During that time, Freddie Highmore had a lot of these kid roles and he does a fantastic job as Astro Boy. It may be average but in all its generic and predictable moments, it still has a few decent fun and funny moments.


With that said, Astro Boy could be a fun movie for a younger audience. It has a lot of science-y fun and brave kids and takes in the parents angle. Plus, its not terribly long running at about 90 minutes which is always nice because it keeps the pacing decent.

When in Rome (2010)

When in Rome

Director: Mark Steven Johnson

Cast: Kristen Bell, Josh Duhamel, Anjelica Huston, Danny DeVito, Dax Shepherd, Will Arnett, Jon Heder, Alexis Dziena, Kate Micucci

Beth is a young, ambitious New Yorker who is completely unlucky in love. However, on a whirlwind trip to Rome, she impulsively steals some coins from a reputed fountain of love, and is then aggressively pursued by a band of suitors. – IMDB

I’m pretty forgiving with romantic comedies. They are really just silly and funny sometimes. There has been widely a shortage of good ones and When in Rome honestly doesn’t do much for itself. Its quite ridiculous in parts and I spent a lot of time rolling my eyes at everything. However, When in Rome has some charming characters. Kristen Bell and Josh Duhamel are incredibly fun to watch together and separate. The premise is really where things are a little odd and shaky. Just take a look at the cast, Danny DeVito, Dax Shepherd, Will Arnett are all fantastic as the enchanted lovers chasing after Kristen Bell and they offer some pretty comedic moments. Its always a good time to watch Dax Shepherd and Kristen Bell as they always do these roles and can get the whole not into each other thing really well. When in Rome just seems like it doesn’t have anything special about it other than its charming cast. But then, you can always watch this charming cast in other movies they’ve done better roles for making this one seem not so appealing.

Overall, Astro Boy and When in Rome fall in the very average range. I’m still a fan of Kristen Bell and its definitely not her issues that makes for the downfalls of these two selections.

Have you seen Astro Boy and/or When in Rome?
What is your favorite Kristen Bell film?

TV Binge: House of Lies [Season 4, 2015]

I’m finally writing up this TV Binge! Actually, this was way before I even saw the Season 1 of Zoo! You can see that post HERE!

I saw the Season 4 of House of Lies possibly about almost two months ago. However, I still remember what I want to talk about. A quick recap on the series: Season 1 was fantastic, Season 2 was charming enough, Season 3 lost a bit of steam but end kind of strong, and now we’re at Season 4. At this point, it can go both ways, right?

Let’s check it out!

House of Lies [Season 4, 2015]

house of lies s4

Creator: Matthew Carnahan

Cast: Don Cheadle, Kristen Bell, Ben Schwartz, Josh Lawson, Donis Leonard Jr., Glynn Turman, Dawn Olivieri, Valorie Curry, Demetri Martin

Season 4 starts a few months after what happens in Season 3. Here is the spoilers so if you haven’t seen previous seasons and plan to watch this, don’t read it.

Marty Kaan is not out of jail and with his old team, they have to go for the smallest cases to try to rebuild Kaan & Associates after Jeannie’s rushed decisions caused him to go to jail and plummeted the image of the company. Jeannie is now pregnant with the hidden fact that it is Marty’s baby (but it isn’t hidden for long). The office has to share space with some digital company that has a skateboarding ramp and these cool kids which lead by Kelsey, end up teaming up with Clyde and Doug and starting this weird relationship. On top of that, Roscoe has gone off the rails after Marty went to jail. Finally, while in jail, Marty conjures up a plan to connect with a rich technological tycoon in order to do business for him when they both get out.

House of Lies S4

I can’t say I’m a huge fan of Season 4. This was by far the one that was far from being a binge. I might have watched one episode or two a day and in multiple sittings. Point is, the story has kind of lost its focus. It still has some witty moments and the characters we’ve grown to know is still around and doing their thing but its a little frustrating to watch also. Especially when its watching Marty in his stupidity when dealing with Jeannie. I guess it makes sense however, it feels like everything is so awkward now. There lacks a flow that used to make the series work. The main issue is not only that the logic of decisions isn’t there but what bothers me more was Roscoe who used to be a good character, now is just an emo teen dealing with stuff that seems to be way over what he should be doing and really not seeing it. His character goes through immense change. I can see how his father going to jail would cause that but him flipping out doesn’t seem to make the situation better and goes against the character we’ve seen in the past three seasons. That is where we can say, House of Lies in this season was all about change.

House of Lies Season 4

In this season, the side characters pose a much more fun time. The best is the awkward situation between Clyde, Doug and Kelsey. Doug’s coping mechanism of being the guy that seems to be dispensable and his insecurities turns him into a really crappy person with just horrible mindsets. Except he can’t really live up to what he does sometimes and turns right back to who he was. That creates humor for sure. It is however nice for once to see that Clyde’s character is shining through because while he likes to sleep around, there’s a whole new level of learning about him in this season that should have been done much earlier. That was possibly the best parts in all its awkwardness. Kelsey is a good character.

House of Lies

To be honest, the whole business aspect of things seemed to be the more interesting turn of events. The desperate situations that occurred and the retaliations and everything in between all worked for the better as it neared the season finale. I have a soft spot for Kristen Bell so I stand up for her character Jeannie a lot. It also comes to the point that she was also a strong point in this. A single mom pregnant and being kicked out of a company she worked hard for also because of things that she regrets doing a lot and still putting up a strong face while trying to figure out her future all lumped together. When her breaking point hits, just don’t mess with her.

Overall, House of Lies Season 4 was a tad lackluster. It seemed to lose a bit of its way however keeping the tone around in forms of sarcastic humor of sorts. There are some decent new characters, some funny and awkward moments but yet, nothing enough to feel like it was binge-worthy. It gets better and better as the dramatic things seem to sort themselves out. It begs to ask how they will wrap up everything in the final season.

Netflix doesn’t have it yet so I’ll be checking it out and reporting back when it shows up.

Are you a fan of House of Lies?

TV Binge: House of Lies [Season 3, 2014]

I’m burning through House of Lies at a remarkable speed, if I must say so myself. This time, it was deliberate since I’m still working on the Netflix A-Z and there are a few little things to take care of. House of Lies sounds like a good, fun and easy option. Did I ever tell you how I love these 25-30 minutes episodes? Its twelve episodes a season which in reality is like watching six, and that is absolutely doable and bingeable (if thats even a word).

House of Lies
[Season 3, 2014]

House of Lies

Creator: Matthew Carnahan

Cast: Don Cheadle, Kristen Bell, Ben Schwartz, Josh Lawson, Donis Leonard Jr., Glynn Turman, Dawn Olivieri, Jenny Slate, Ryan Gaul, Genevieve Angelson, Mekhi Phifer, T.I., Bex Taylor-Klaus, Alice Hunter

Season Three picks up hot off the heels of the Season 2. Marty has left and working with a new team to get business wherever he can and build a name and get some good business. His team is unsure about where Kaan and Associates stand but they stay around because of his legendary name and what they can learn from him. Jeannie and Doug stayed at Galweather until circumstances change and they end up leaving eventually but not before Jeannie offers the condition to be a 50/50 partner. Clyde betrayed Marty and ended up working for Monica, Marty’s ex-wife who is evil and ruthless and finally breaks down before finding a way to win his place back at Kaan and Associates.

House of Lies

I can’t say that this was my favorite season.  There was a change of pace here. That isn’t exactly a bad thing but then there seemed to be much more friction because of the Pod separating and now reuniting. Marty and Jeannie are always opposing each other’s ideas now that they are partners.  Deep down, it seems that there’s something more, probably due to the previous season and that Jeannie wants to prove that she is the “boss lady”. Clyde is dealing with his own self-worth and the value of himself at the office and for the most part, he has the hardest part whereas, Doug is still dorky but he also makes certain personal decisions to change the course of his life. Monica, Marty’s ex-wife, plays a much bigger role and its not a bad thing either because her character lacks morals but its exactly for that reason that its fun to watch. Thing is, there are a lot of petty problems and while this seems to dig a little deeper into the four’s life, it also highlights their flaws as an endgame.

House of Lies

The highlight of the series goes to almost the entire series focused on their new client and their conflict, Dollahyde and the two partners, Lukas (played by T.I.) and Dre (played by Mekhi Phifer).  I’ve seen these two guys before in other series or movies. Its hard to pinpoint exactly where but they are convincing. Their conflict and the stuff they pull really carries the show to be more fun to watch. It also puts Marty and Jeannie in even more opposing ends. To be honest, Lukas was the most colorful character in this season. I wish he did have a larger part.

House of Lies

On the other hand, possibly the most disposable plot is the one involving Marty’s son, Roscoe (played by Donis Leonard Jr.).  I know I talk about liking the show being more personal but it seems they are trying to push Roscoe to be a main player of the show which changes the direction of what House of Lies is but rather, it turns into a show about Marty Kaan and not about the business consultant company itself. However, I think that Bex Taylor-Klaus, who plays Lex, as an actress has quite a bit of potential. She’s in Scream TV series and also one of the best parts of it.  Talking about that, Season 2 just landed on Netflix so I’m going to be watching that soon. Back to this side plot. On one hand, I like that Roscoe is growing but the family plot, at a certain point, feels a little forced.

Overall, Season three of House of Lies is a little below par to the first two seasons. It lacks a bit of good pacing. I still felt inclined to binge it and it was still fun to watch. However, I’m not sure how happy I was with it having too many side plots and never taking the time to let us care. At the end of this season, I can’t say I cared more for Doug or Clyde even if they had more personal bits or even that I was rooting for either Jeannie or Marty even if they are still one of the best parts of House of Lies.

Have you seen House of Lies?

TV Binge: House of Lies [Season 2, 2013]

Earlier this week, I wrote about the first season of House of Lies.  If you missed it, you can check it out HERE!

Due to not enough backlog and just real life being busy, I decided to bump this post up a little. It also means I can continue watching House of Lies Season 3. Yay! House of Lies seriously took me by surprise and it just is really funny to watch despite all the business stuff in it.  Let’s hope that Season 2 holds up the greatness of the first season! 🙂

House of Lies
[Season 2, 2013]

House of Lies

Creator: Matthew Carnahan

Cast: Don Cheadle, Kristen Bell, Ben Schwartz, Josh Lawson, Donis Leonard Jr., Glynn Turman, Dawn Olivieri, Jenny Slate, Larenz Tate, Bess Armstrong

The second season of House of Lies picks up a (few?) week(s) after the incident that destroyed the deal that was going have MetroCapital take over Galweather, the business consultant company that Marty and The Pod works for.  However, danger is still close.  The incident caused the company to be taken over by a very reputable business woman, Julianna Hofschrager, played by Bess Armstrong. Julianne has an agenda to turn the business around and with a new management comes its own worries.  Marty and The Pod get sent out to take care of a huge client in Las Vegas and the difference of the first season and this one is that the second season focuses around landing this casino deal and working it out throughout most of the season.

House of Lies

 Having one case along with a few other little ones on the side is a good decision.  It adds a little different pacing to the story. Now, we can actually see the characters develop more. On one hand, we get a closer look at Marty and his family especially as he patches up things with his son and deals with his brother that crashes at his place.  On the other hand, not so much him but Jeannie is dealing with the memories of how things left off in Season 1 and wondering about the feelings she might have.  However, this time around, we get a much deeper look into Doug’s character and something like how he becomes more independent along with Clyde.  A new member is added onto their team. The new member is part of Marty’s past. Also, Jenny Slate joins the show as Doug’s girlfriend and her character is rather complex as well but one I like a lot! We need some more ladies on the show with depth.  Although, in a quirky and sly way, Bess Armstrong is also fantastic as Julianne Hofschrager.

House of Lies

One of the most unpredictable bits of Season 2 is really in not truly knowing who to trust or how much we do know the characters.  Everyone seems to have their own story and at this point, we only have skimmed the surface so when things happen out of the ordinary, it becomes a surprise. Its also the series where the characters are more independent.  They have more outside influence and each are trying to embrace whatever suppressed feelings they have to secure their future.  The Pod is more and more dangerous because both Marty and Jeannie seem to have their dangers and it seems like a time bomb waiting to explode.  The feeling of uneasiness is always present however House of Lies is quite masterful at keeping a certain humor constantly in the forefront.  That is the part I enjoy and appreciate the most.

Plus, Season 2 ended with a guest role for Adam Brody and well, this was before blogging days but my high school days was very much being in love with The O.C. so his small part here was the cherry on top.  However, we can’t discount some of the other guest roles that occurred and maybe even some of them I suspect might reappear in future seasons.

House of Lies

Overall, Season 2 of House of Lies was a lot better than the first season.  It develops each of the characters better and gets more personal.  The story has a continuity and danger.  The new characters add some complexity but maintains the humor it had in the first season.  Don Cheadle is still incredibly charismatic even in his very flawed character while Kristen Bell is absolutely fantastic.  Jenny Slate is one of my favorite additions to the show and I can’t wait to see how her character develops. Its a lot of fun to watch and Season 3 is heading into a completely different direction and I’m excited to start it up!

Are you a fan of House of Lies? How about Don Cheadle and/or Kristen Bell?

Time for Season 3! I’ll be back with the next TV Binge soon! 🙂

TV Binge: House of Lies [Season 1, 2012]

Wow! Now, this TV Binge has been sitting in backlog for a little while but I’ve been holding back watching Season 2 because I haven’t been able to find a spot to schedule this in. Still, its time to get this done so that I can continue with this series! I know its an older-ish series but I need a dose of Kristen Bell and this one is rated rather well.

Let’s check it out! 🙂

House of Lies [Season 1, 2012]

House of Lies

Creator: Matthew Carnahan

Cast: Don Cheadle, Kristen Bell, Ben Schwartz, Josh Lawson, Dawn Olivieri, Donis Leonard Jr., Glynn Turman, Griffin Dunne, Richard Schiff, Greg Germann, Michael Rady

A subversive, scathing look at a self-loathing management consultant from a top-tier firm. Marty, a highly successful, cutthroat consultant is never above using any means (or anyone) necessary to get his clients the information they want.-IMDB

 Its taken me a long time to get to writing up this TV Binge.  I actually have finished Season 2 at this point because I just couldn’t resist and I guess I needed some extra ideas on what to write.  Thing is, I love House of Lies. I started this series up because of Kristen Bell and I’m sticking with it because its fun and quirky and hilarious.  Its unforgiving and smart.  The characters, especially the entire team jives well together while staying incredibly competitive. In the world of business consultants, its a game of survival and how well you can sell your ideas (that are pretty much the better way of saying BS) and only the best get out alive and thriving.

house of lies

Season one builds a nice foundation for the series.  Every episode is a new case that the four person team consisting of Marty (Don Cheadle), Jeannie (Kristen Bell), Clyde (Ben Schwartz) and Doug (Josh Lawson). Marty is technically the leader of the team and our host to figuring out what business consultants are all about. Marty talks to the audience a lot.  This is one factor that I like a lot about this.  It helps me feel involved with the show and the story and maybe even with the extremely flawed and controversial character like Marty.  The deal with seeing the full cast here mostly in the work environment and always interacting with each other but not exactly knowing each other outside of the job is that it causes some questions about the characters.  It makes someone like Marty, who is the male main character to be much more complex. The same applies for Jeannie, played by Kristen Bell.  I love Kristen Bell, especially because of her role as Veronica Mars but I like Jeannie a lot because she is also a very flawed person.  She’s ambitious and does what she needs to make things happen but she also has certain part of her nature that she can’t ignore.  It feels a little like Jeannie has a hard time embracing who she is deep down.

house of lies

The other two guys in Marty’s team is Clyde and Doug.  Clyde is kind of like the asshole of the group.  He talks trash and makes fun of Doug a lot.  He likes to woo women a lot also and his character, while not exactly having a lot, adds a tad of fun and BS.  On the other hand, Doug is the brain of the group.  He analyzes the numbers and he’s really good at what he does except he isn’t so good at the social part of the job.  He is more behind the scenes and a buffer.  Many times, his awkwardness is what makes him entertaining to watch.

House of Lies

The best part of the series is not only getting to know these characters but also the background story.  While business consultants are on the road a lot, there are few tangents going on here.  One is the family tangent which is the limited behind the scenes for everyone else but we get a good view of Marty and his relationship with his ex-wife and his son and his father. There are things he can do better but also other things that he is dealing with.  When his work intertwines with his personal after an encounter unexpectedly at the beginning of the season that triggers a little later into a relationship, this is when he actually offends the client/company management played by Greg Germann and ends up having this bank MetroCapital want to acquire the current consultant company that he works at to kick him out. The whole scenario and the encounters of Greg (same first name in the series) is absolutely hilarious because he absolutely has an issue and it just makes for a lot of funny and awkward moments.

Overall, the first season of House of Lies is a lot of fun and a really good foundation.  We learn a lot about the characters as they develop.  Although Clyde and Doug sit in the background a lot in The Pod (what they call their team), Marty and Jeannie do get a good look at their stories as their character develops.  The situation with MetroCapital adds danger to the scene and gives the show continuity.  At the end of Season One, I was itching to watch season 2 which I have already as I’m writing this now. I just couldn’t resist. That post is coming up really soon! 🙂

Have you seen House of Lies? What do you think of it?

TV Binge: Veronica Mars [Season 3 Final]

With that, Veronica Mars comes to an end. I can’t believe that it only had 3 seasons.  Its a little sad because she’s a really awesome character and the characters (and cast) involved in this was really great also. In Season 3, there’s a few new characters as she steps in Herst College and the college itself has a few little cases that pop up which she is trying to trace.

Veronica Mars [Season 3]

veronica mars

Creator: Rob Thomas

Cast: Kristen Bell, Jason Dohring, Percy Daggs III, Francis Capra, Enrico Colantoni, Ryan Hansen, Tina Majorino, Julie Gonzalo, Chris Lowell

Veronica, Logan, Mac and Wallace, (even Dick) head to Herst College.  Right off the bat, they are encountered with a “date” rape case that has been happening on campus.  A group of ladies believe its the sorority boys and their doings but when it hits a little too close to home with Mac’s roommate, she digs a little deeper to try and find out who is the true culprit.  While this is happening, the Dean also causes another case to pop up involving her criminology teacher.  What’s more, she gets recommended to join in in a FBI intern program.  At the same time, Logan and her relationships hits a few snags as they deal with Dick following the death of his brother.  As well as the addition of Wallace’s roommate Piz who is crazy about Veronica but too shy to do anything about it.

Veronica Mars

I think that covers a good bit of the storyline up there. We have a little triangle, kind of, that doesn’t exactly happen because Piz is too shy to do anything and Veronica and Logan are too attached to realize when they should break it off. The main focus goes to the two big cases here which leads to a few smaller ones but those ones take up the majority of the season and are resolved a few episodes before the end.  I can only hope that they had wanted to build it so that there would be a season 4 which didn’t happen.  I wasn’t following the show back then so I have no idea what the intentions were.

veronica mars

Still, Veronica Mars grows in this season.  She starts looking at the possibility of her future.  She tries to be more trusting but failing, expecting more from Logan which she realizes is not exactly possible, and starts seeing sometimes that her actions have consequences that linger. She becomes a college student and realizes that college is almost like high school. At the same time, she understands what loving someone and being in a relationship is although not exactly knowing when to pull herself out of dangerous situations.  But she also starts building stronger friendships, especially with Mac, especially while she tries to get over Beaver’s death from the previous season. Mac is a pretty smart character also so its nice that she’s getting more time for her story arc.

veronica mars

If the end was expected in advance for Veronica Mars, they did do a good job of coming full circle to putting Veronica back into a situation similar to what happened to her before. It causes her to act the way she would except it ends with her making a more grown up realization of vengeance. At the same time, you can see the trust.  On a final note with a bit of spoiler, I am a huge Logan and Veronica fan because Jason Dohring in all his bad boy glamour is really protective and acts on his feelings.  But you have to admit that Piz kind of does win my heart over because he’s the good guy, the right choice and what is good for Veronica.  He can allow her to trust him in even the most suspicious situations but also turn her into a girl (Veronica’s words).  Its a refreshing take on how he changes her a little even if we only have a few episodes to see this interaction. Piz, played by Chris Lowell, always has that boy next door charm.

With that said, Veronica Mars Season 3 has a decent ending.  It does keep some open-ended questions for your own mind to decipher but Veronica Mars has grown up and we can see that she is a better person after seeing her in the three seasons.  I don’t think Veronica Mars should have ended where it did because its a genius character and the snark and witty humor in this is tons of fun but well, I guess all I have now is to get some answers in the movie. You should be seeing that review soon 😉

What did you think of the Veronica Mars series? Did you think it ended too soon?

TV Binge: Veronica Mars [Season 2]

Its been a while since I saw Season 1 of Veronica Mars and posted about it HERE.  When I ended that post, I was at the middle of Season 2 and actually, I stopped there.  I can’t remember why but I did.  And somehow, as I was thinking its time for a new series with the bunch of movies I’ve been reviewing, I thought about Veronica Mars again and to continue it.

Veronica Mars [Season 2]

Veronica Mars

Creator: Rob Thomas

Cast: Kristen Bell, Jason Dohring, Percy Dags III, Enrico Colantoni, Francis Capra, Ryan Hansen, Teddy Dunn, Michael Muhney, Tina Majorino, Kyle Gallner, Tessa Thompson

Veronica Mars picks up a little after the events of Season 1. Logan’s dad is put behind bars for his suspicion in being responsible for Lily’s murder. She’s now dating Duncan again and Logan has gone off the deep end again because she broke his heart. While right off, he gets accused for being responsible for the death of a PCHer called Felix on the bridge.  Shortly after, we see all this, the crazy doesn’t end until a school bus coming home from a trip plummets down a cliff after an explosion.  Linked to these few events, the season kicks off as Veronica Mars is hired and takes it on her own for other cases to figure out 1) who blew up the bus and sent it off a cliff 2) If Logan is innocent, who is responsible for Felix’s death and 3) How do they keep Logan’s dad Aaron behind bars? The story thickens and suspicions fly around.  Relationships form, new characters arrive and some old ones leave.
Veronica Mars

In my Season 1 post, I already talked about how much I love the characters of Veronica Mars, notably Veronica Mars herself and Logan Echolls.  And I also really liked Keith Mars.  Its a lot of fun.  This season, its even more and better.  Right off the bat, episode one sets all the right stages for the rest of the season to develop.  Not too many plots but enough to keep us intrigued for the 20+ episodes coming up.  There’s a lot of room for change and surprises and that is exactly what we get, along with some pretty close calls and danger heading in Veronica Mars’s world.

Veronica Mars continues with her snarky and witty lines and her love life comes a whole lot more in focus.  Is being back with Duncan all its set out for? I never really liked Duncan as a character.  He’s super sketchy and definitely has some issues. I felt that way in Season 1 and Season 2 definitely didn’t do anything to change it.  While, we have her ex, Logan Echolls who manages to create some tension and chemistry. There’s something about the dynamic of Veronica and Logan that is just so awesome.

veronica mars

But then, it could be because Logan is kind of that bad boy that you know has a good heart but he just makes these impulsive decisions.  Then when he knows he does something bad, he has those puppy dog eyes and then we just melt.  At least I do.  Its like that whole wanting to punch him in the face but also giving him hugs and tell him that it’ll all turn out good.  You have to admit that for a trust fund boy, he has gone through a good bit of damage.  Not that its an excuse for not being more able to treasure what he has instead of going around and ruining it all the time.

Moving along from Logan and Veronica (because it might start sounding like a creepy obsession), Season 2 does pull away from too much focus on them but expands it to other relationships with Wallace and his chasing the new girl in school and to their computer saavy friend, Mac.  It also puts the Casablancas brothers with a bigger role: two very different characters but adds a little extra to the events of Season 2.

Veronica Mars

I know that I’m skipping out a lot of the plot but that’s totally because if you haven’t seen it (which might be a very small amount of you), then I just don’t want to put spoilers.  But, I will say this, I like that we’re growing up with the characters.  Granted, I’m not in high school anymore so the whole transition to finding a college and moving forward with life is fun.  It makes this something more to expect because it will be another place to move forward.  That whole episode visiting the Herst College was awesome.  Other than that, the story was great.  They paced it with enough to make it throw a few suspicions in various directions and it stays really fun and thrilling to watch.

Veronica Mars Season 2 is very entertaining. It has a good formula working here with its nice characters.  There is a lot of gradual change that builds to solve the big case amidst all the other small cases.  Veronica remains remarkably quotable and the chemistry with her and Logan despite not exactly having a lot of together time is still great.  Their characters play off of each other really well.  Veronica Mars is just a great character.  I can’t wait to watch the last season.  It should be soon 😉

Are you a fan of Veronica Mars series? 

Big Miracle (2012)

I’m sorry if I’ve been really slow on the movie reviews front. Fact is, movie watching takes time and it takes even more time to write the review because I’m not as talented as all of you movie bloggers out there.  Plus, not being home doesn’t help especially when I’m travelling with a dying tablet that only lets me read e-books and my phone is also on its last leg of functionality.  So, I’m working on it but I ended up not getting most of the May expiring Netflix movies seen.  I started Love is a Many Splendoured Thing and gave up because I kept dozing off and getting massively angry and frustrated at the lady.  But before completely losing all the movies on Monday, I managed to squeeze in Big Miracle, which I’ve wanted to see for a while.

Big Miracle (2012)

big miracle

Director: Ken Kwapis

Cast: Drew Barrymore, John Krasinski, Ted Danson, Ahmaogak Sweeney, Kristen Bell

In small town Alaska, a news reporter recruits his ex-girlfriend – a Greenpeace volunteer – on a campaign to save a family of gray whales trapped by rapidly forming ice in the Arctic Circle.- IMDB

Based on real life events (that I’ve never heard of), Big Miracle surrounds itself with a decent cast and a heartwarming story about the environment, global warming, and helpless whales and working together through differences.  I have a soft spot for these movies and regardless of how cliche these family dramas always turn out to be, they usually charm me a whole lot. This one had John Krasinski, who I can’t seem to remember where I saw him last and the lovely Drew Barrymore who always ends up making me like her movies despite me never regarding her as a great actress.  Still, she is fantastic because she always knows how to pick mostly feel good movies.  Big Miracle is no exception.  Plus, I’m a huge animal lover especially sea animals so whales and just coming back from Alaska made me feel just a tad closer to the whole thing.

Big Miracle

What is really commendable about this is that there’s a lot of messages being sent here and at the end of it all when the credits roll, we see real snippets of the actual event this was based on and who each character in the movie was playing.  I always like that sort of thing, even though I never go seek out how true it stays to the real thing (which I should). Its always touching when an event can bring together everyone and their differences, even change some views.  Like how everyone does things whether political, social, financial, environmental, all for their own benefit and motive and just how passionate some others are completely about giving their all to understand and do absolutely anything to save others (animals included) who may not look helpless but actually are.  In the end, regardless of what those motives are, the cause itself will always change someone’s mind and its these little changes and push our world to become hopefully a better place.  I mean, I’m being really simplistic and naive here probably but sometimes that is all it takes.

big miracle 1

On top of all that dramatic stuff with the whales and even the love story injected into Big Miracle, there’s also a lot about connecting with animals in the tradition of the original people that inhabited there.  I can’t remember the name right now.  Damn memory.  Still, the grandfather and the kid has a really good relationship where you can see the outside world affecting how the young ones are and how they are being modernized and seemingly forgetting their roots bit by bit as the outside world invades Barrow, Alaska.

There’s only so much I can say about this.  Big Miracle may be predictable and cliche but there is no doubt that it is extremely effective as a heartwarming, tear-jerking, at times funny and extremely passionate family drama about saving whales.  Its definitely worth your time.  I know I got a little misty near the end (but then as I get older, I tend to get all emotional easier).  The story is really great and the fact that this actually happened makes me feel just pretty great also.

Have you seen Big Miracle? Did you hear of these events in Alaska about saving the three gray whales? 

TV Binge: Veronica Mars (Season 1)

Its taken me a while to get this together.  I’ve been mostly reviewing more recent TV series. I think the furthest I went was the first season of Downton Abbey and thats a few years back, I believe.  Anyways, Veronica Mars is even further back if I’m correct, seeing as the style and all that seems to be a little more my high school days…

In my last Pinterest Therapy, I already mentioned how I’m developing a massive girl crush for Veronica Mars but the Season 1 of Veronica Mars was all sorts of roller coaster rides.  It definitely was one hell of a ride, if you ask me.  I’m not exactly a Kristen Bell fan although her roles are slowly growing on me but Veronica Mars is pretty fantastic. Its sort of what I love in TV all mixed into one.  The snarky/witty/intelligent main character, investigations and cases, plus high school scenario and drama filled with some pretty charismatic characters.  That’s Season 1 of Veronica Mars in a nutshell.

veronica mars

So what makes me like this?

1) Veronica Mars is all sorts of awesome as a character!

veronica mars season 1

What’s not to love about Veronica Mars? She’s smart and snarky.  She has a really awesome attitude and she stands up for herself.  Plus, she’s an excellent private investigator and can pretty much convince anyone to do something for her.  What makes her believable  is that she isn’t almighty.  She asks for help and has her limits.  Her life is destroyed, her best friend was murdered and her new best friend helps her out and her mom skips town and everyone at school doesn’t particularly like her very much.

Veronica Mars Season 1

2) Jason Dohring as Logan Echolls! 🙂


I may not have seen Veronica Mars until lately but I am a huge fan of the extremely short-lived show called Moonlight. It only lasted a season even if it should’ve stayed on for much longer.  I may have loved Alex O’Loughlin in Moonlight but I had an equally huge crush on Jason Dohring.  This guy is all sorts of cute.  The character of Logan Echolls is really fun with a ton of character development and the chemistry he has with Veronica Mars from the start till the end of Season 1 is awesome.  I love him! I just do! 🙂

3) Cameos from a ton of mildly to very popular stars now!

veronica mars

Amanda Seyfried gets the role as Lily, who was Veronica Mars’s dead best friend which is where the investigation is focused on: finding the right killer, giving this role a pretty great significance. Also, Max Greenfield (New Girl) gets a few episodes as well and I really enjoyed that character.  On a more cameo level, there was Jessica Chastain, Jane Lynch, Leighton Meester, Adam Scott, just to name a few.  I’m probably forgetting someone (oh right, Paris Hilton…).

veronica mars

I don’t know exactly where to mention this but Enrico Colantoni plays Veronica’s dad, Keith Mars and I love this guy, especially from Flashpoint.  The father-daughter relaitonship here is really good!

4) The Multiple Investigations

I love investigation series.  Whether its The Mentalist, Criminal Minds, Lie to Me, Elementary and the list goes on.  Veronica Mars has a ton of great characters which is fantastic but what captures me even more is some really cool investigations.  Every episode has a case or two from the private investigation firm but it also never overshadows the fact that Veronica Mars is focusing on one, tracking her mom and two, finding out who is Lily’s actual killer.  With the help of some friends, she usually encounters a few snags which adds to the tension but also helps emphasize a little more on who Veronica Mars is, especially when it gets more personal.

Overall…Veronica Mars is probably one of the best series I’ve seen but as usual, a lot of great series don’t make it in the world of TV because survival is hard and its a chance the studio has to take, even if whatever comes along might be a million times worse.  I’ve only seen up to middle of Season 2 when this post goes up so I still have to see if it keeps up the awesomeness.  Season 1 was all kinds of awesome and I was hooked right from the pilot! 🙂

Have you seen Veronica Mars (the TV series)? Did you like it? 

Music Obsessions: Christmas

Good morning (or afternoon or evening, depending where you are), my lovelies!

It’s Saturday! Christmas is in a few days! Before I get to the million things to do for Christmas, there is really no better time to start checking out/sharing Christmas songs (if you haven’t already, because the radios have been since December 1st).

My YouTube subscriptions are piling up with a ton of Christmas music from various artists over the last week. Lets share a few that I’ve been pretty impressed with!

Text me Merry Christmas – Straight No Chaser ft. Kristen Bell

Straight No Chaser is so fun to listen to and this song is just cute and fun and totally awesome! 🙂 It always makes me break out in song (and dance) and everything so happy, light and fluffy!

Baby It’s Christmas – Travis-Atreo Graham ft. Colton Haynes

The song itself is warm and soothing. Travis-Atreo Graham has a very nice voice but c’mon Colton Haynes is a handsome guy (Arrow fans know that) and he can sing.  His smile at 2:16 just makes me want to snuggle up next to the fire also.

You and Christmas – Rusty Clanton and Tessa Violet

Rusy and Tessa are two artists that have amazing chemistry when they work together in these cute collabs.  I remember back in Valentine’s when they made another one of these and it is just sweet and adorable.

Where are You Christmas – Faith Hill (Nick Pitera cover)


Suffice to say that I like this song a lot (especially since I did a piano cover of this song last Christmas) and since I’m sure Faith Hill doesn’t need me to post her music, I decided to post this very good cover by Nick Pitera.  This guy has this incredible vocal range and he never stops to amaze me with what he can do.  Liking this one a lot!

Let it Snow – Justin Robinett 

Something a little more classic Christmas music and Justin Robinett is totally fantastic.  He doesn’t have as many covers but I love his voice.  I always love what he puts out and with a new solo around the corner, I’m definitely pre-ordering it.

Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy – Pentatonix

Now to classic music but in acapella version by Pentatonix.  This year’s most recent and one of the best discoveries is this group.  They are really amazing and who knew it would sound so exceptionally fantastic to do Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy like this.

There you go! Enjoy!

*If you are doing last minute shopping this weekend, best of luck of that! You might want to listen to a lot of happy music before going 😉

**AND, remember to drop by next week, I’ll be having a little poll on Monday for 2015 stuff.  I would love to have a little help! 🙂