Me Before You | A Review

Me Before You is being called the romantic movie of the year, with an all-star cast this is a film certainly not to be missed. Based on the book, of the same name, that has sold more than six million copies since being published, Me Before You is a love story centred around Will Traynor, a former active jet-setting banker turned quadriplegic played by Sam Claflin and his carer, Lousia “Lou” Clarke played by Emilia Clarke.

Overall I did enjoy this film, it’s a not so traditional love story. It focuses on the situation the characters are in rather than the love story that is clearly present, this is refreshing as many stories focus on romance. At the very core, this film is two people trying to get the other to see how great their life could be, who just happen to fall in love whilst doing so. Me Before You is a human film with three dimensional characters made even more superb by brilliant actors (even if the line up is mainly made up of the cast of Game Of Thrones) I’m astounded how a film that is undoubtedly a tear-jerker got me laughing as much as it did. Louisa Clarke is girl who you will want to be friends with, mainly because you would want to raid her wardrobe for those creative and unique combinations. Whereas Will Traynor is the man who you would want to be taken out by, despite his situation he is clearly still a witty, charming man, who is unfortunately haunted by the harsh reality that he will never be the man he once was. It is true that it differs from the book, not greatly, but just enough that anyone who has read it in the last year before watching it would notice.


Lou’s determination to get Will to live and stop him from travelling to Switzerland to end his life, is remarkable. Emilia Clarke’s impeccable acting shows her going from this quirky, clumsy girl to a passionate, strong headed, independent woman. I can relate to Lou a lot, therefore a certain favour could be present. All of the cast are stunning, but Janet McTeer and Charles Dance really show how honed their acting skills are. Playing parents in a situation no parent ever wants to be in, they handle the roles of Mr and Mrs Traynor with respect and ease. For me, McTeer shone in the airport scene, I couldn’t imagine the translation from page to screen to be more flawless, partially due to her acting, she managed to convey so many deep emotions without uttering a word. Amazing.

If they wanted to make an impression they certainly have with this film, it’s premiere was a stage for disability right protests, without a doubt it has raised questions amongst able-bodies people about the presentation of disabled people. As Will’s choice to end his own life has been seen as one that is sending the common opinion that all people in his situation no longer want to live. I don’t agree or disagree with this view, I know it’s easy to sit on the fence with big issues such as this, but I truly believe that we need to see more disabled people on our screens, because we are not a total able bodied society. Saying that we need to recognise that not everyone who is put in these traumatic situations aren’t always full of positive energy and sometimes they don’t always see things the same way we able bodied people do. Surely it’s better that Will was shown ending his life in a dignified, if not controversial, way, rather than the shocking real manner of suicides that are present in the world.

Me Before You isn’t a film desperately trying to be a book, it has it’s own grounding from the book, something that is desperately lacking in the majority of book to movie adaptations we see today.


Insurgent Review

This time last year I was contemplating the hotness of Theo James, surprisingly this year I find myself doing the same. Based on the book series by Veronica Roth ‘Divergent’ was released around this time last year it is only suitable that the sequel ‘Insurgent’ has been released.

With a few altercations to the cast the main characters reprise their roles, with Shailene Woodley starring as Tris Prior, a Divergent who doesn’t fit into the categories set out by the society, Theo James (and his extremely firm upper body) star as Four, a Dauntless leader and love interest for Tris. Miles Teller and Ansel Elgort also reprise their roles as Peter Hayes and Caleb Prior respectfully. After the events of Divergent, the foursome are fugitives, due to Jeanine’s (Kate Winslet) villainous actions and separated from the rest of the dauntless faction. The foursome plot to get rid of Jeanine once and for all, but with the threat of her hunting Divergents to open a mysterious box provides a danger to Tris.

Overall I had mixed feelings about this film, I loved some bits but others not so much, I liked the premise of it and the idea of hunting Divergents. But, in my opinion, it was a bit of an anticlimax, as I got to end and discovered what was in this ‘box’ and I found myself not too bothered. However with the first film I was in great need of finding out what happens? I have a healthy interest in the next film, but not an addiction, which is a let down considering what I thought it would be like. On the whole, the acting didn’t falter, I think all of the main cast should get a special mention for their ability to portray internal conflicts and deep emotion, even if a couple of them turn out to be heartless!

In conclusion, this film was good, not great, but good. It truly did have some jaw dropping twists and moments where I was on the edge of my seat, however it isn’t what I expected, so for that I give it 3 out of 5 dragons. Saying that, I have seen worse films!

3 Stars

Let me know if you agree or not and your opinions on the film or book!

Happy Reading,

February Favourites

Things I have learnt writing this post:
1) I cannot spell February without autocorrect.
2) I should really be doing work right now.
3) I like a lot of stuff.
4) Always save posts multiple times.

Hello my chums,
It’s that time of the month again, no not that time! It’s time for Miss Backwards favourites, I know that you should have a Tizzy Tuesday post this week, but as the month drew to a close this week I thought you wouldn’t mind a replacement of great proportions. Shall we?

Due to the much needed half term I had this month, the time I spent watching television soon mounted up, due to my secret love for all things superhero I quickly found myself watching ABC’s ‘Marvel’s Agents Of Shield’ I had heard about this show in passing, but never really knew what it was fully about, but as it was by Joss Whedon I knew there could be potential for it to be great. As I had some time on my hands I thought I would give it a chance, two days later and I had watched all of the available episodes. The show offers great team chemistry both on and off screen, with Clark Gregg reprising his role as Agent Phil Coulson from the smash hit film ‘Avengers Assemble’, he is joined by the funny duo of FitzSimmons played by Iain De Caestecker and Elizabeth Henstridge respectively, specialist Grant Ward (Brett Dalton), mysterious pilot Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen) and newcomer Skye (Chloe Bennet) a highly skilled hacker and activist who joins the team in the first episode.

The basis of the show is that the team are sent out to investigate the unordinary, and has multiple tie-ins with Marvel movies that were released when the episodes first aired such as Thor: A Dark World, and Captain America: The Winter Soldier. It returns after it’s mid season break on the first of March in the US, so it won’t be long until I get to catch up with my favourite alien/crime fighting team. If I had to pick a favourite character I would pick Skye, as her character is one that you see develop whilst dealing with conflicts throughout both seasons, also her computer skills and wardrobe as to die for!

I only finished one book this month, measly I know. Therefore my favourite would have to be Every Second Counts by Sophie McKenzie, the sequel to Split Second. I can’t tell you about it without ruining the previous book, so don’t say I didn’t warn you. After being framed by Roman Riley at the end of the previous book, Nat and Charlie are on the run together, either unable to contact their families or been disowned from them completely, after Charlie realises that there maybe some truth in Riley’s claims that her father is still alive she decides to fly solo and go in search of answers and chaos ensues. If I had to sum this book up in one word it would be “bombs”. A lot of bombs.

If you caught my film review earlier this month then you will be able to guess my favourite, for anyone who missed it go check it out and all will be explained as to why Kingsman is my movie of the month.

This is a new section, as i’m constantly attached to my iPod it felt a little odd to not have music section. Although I only really get addicted to songs and not artists or albums, this month I have been enjoying Ed Sheeran’s new album Multiply, so theres a special mention to that. Onto the songs:

Shut Up and Dance – Walk The Moon 

With it’s catchy lyrics and general happy mood, this song soon became addictive. I had listened to Walk The Moon before but never found their stuff to be quite what I was looking for at the moment, however this song is a sure mood lifter and in my personal opinion a great start to any party, alone or with others!

Afire Love – Ed Sheeran

From his new album Afire Love is one of the more ballady tracks that contrast such hits as ‘Sing’ and ‘Don’t’ so I feel might get overlooked when people are raving about the album as a whole. With it’s heavy piano chords and even more meaningful lyrics Afire Love is a tribute to Sheeran’s late grandfather, to me it’s unlike the rest of the album and makes me feel as if i’m part of something more; what I feel when I hear this song makes me immediately hit the repeat button just so I can sing a handful of lines, as you can tell the love and admiration that seeps through the speakers.

I hope you enjoyed reading about my February (yes, no need for autocorrect) favourites, let me know what your’s were, maybe they were the same! We can now all welcome Spring with open arms as we get one step closer to Summer!

Happy reading,

Kingsman: The Secret Service Review

“Oxfords, never brogues,”

You know you’re in for a good film when there are explosions and espionage within the first 3 minutes, accompanied with the opening bars of ‘Money For Nothing’ by Dire Straits, Kingsman got off to a flying start. From that point it didn’t drop its standard for a moment, the whole cinema was chuckling throughout at the cleverly placed gags and jaw dropping fighting moves from Mr Darcy.

South Londoner Eggsy (Taron Egerton) is thrust into a world of high class espionage after being saved from arrest by a sharp-suited Harry Hart (Colin Firth) who is in debt to Eggsy’s family after many years. Falling into rank Eggsy soon ditches the trainers and snapback for a tailor suit and trademark Kingsman glasses, just as a global threat emerges from a twisted tech genius (Samuel L Jackson)

If you’re expecting a proper, James Bond like spy thriller, I think that you may have the wrong film. This film is a funny and refreshing take on the ‘Spy-Thriller’ with plenty of controversial elements that invite discussion. Matthew Vaughn directs from a script by Jane Goldman, based on a comic book by Mark Millar. Effectively an origin story the plot is left wide open for a sequel, which should be as classy as the first. There were some problems with the film, however they didn’t impact the whole viewing experience; Vaugh’s view of the class system can be seen as stereotypical (posh guy rescues a kid from troubling background) and raises a potential mark for extreme controversy. Although this controversial element is crucial for what can been seen as the moral to come through- that it’s not your accent, it’s your actions that really count – that’s when you get through the chopping off of limbs of course.

Overall it was a great film that was enjoyed by all that attend, I couldn’t pick a best bit because I loved it all, but the church scene really made my jaw drop (you’ll never Mr Firth in the same way again) Kingsman is a film that really did put class in kick- ass, and for that it get five stars/dragons.

5 Stars

Happy reading,

January Favourites

As I sit here and glance at the date I find myself saying “how are we a month into the New Year?” Yes that is right dear reader that is correct, I know it seems only like yesterday we all went rushing down to our local gyms to sign up to the thing that was going to ensure the “new you”, its only been four weeks since you embarked on that oh so fearless haircut that you now cover with a hat on cold and warm days. As we draw the curtains on the first month of the year I get to recall my favourites for the month, I recommend you grab a cuppa a get comfy.

Despite that in still reading this book it is one of the favourites I have read. You’re The One That I Want by Giovanna Fletcher is a lot better than the the last book I read by her. As Christmas With Billy And Me felt rushed and rather pointless, but I’ll save that for another time. This is shaping up to be a very good book indeed, the idea that there are different types of love intrigues me and it’s something that Giovanna explores very well, through the characters that I have found myself invested in, the complications of a three part friendship with a girl and two guys are told in a funny and gripping way.

Surprisingly, I have seen a lot of films this month, and it all kicked off with The Theory Of Everything on New Year’s Day that was after I had bargained with my dad to sit through the film with me in exchange for an extortionately priced bag of Munchies.  We were not disappointed, the biographical film about Stephen Hawking is based off the memoirs of Jane Hawking, his ex wife. It tells the previously unseen in and outs of the relationship and how they dealt with Stephens condition and the challenges they faced. Eddie Redmanyne’s face is something to marvel at as well as the film content, so many awards can;t be wrong can they? So if your near a cinema and it’s still on I highly recommend it, because it will perhaps it will force you to look beyond the wheelchair of the world’s most intelligent men.

Due to a certain binge watch of one of my all time favourite series’, BBC One’s ‘Our Girl’ as my parents decided that it would stop me from talking about Ben Aldridge if they brought me the DVD (Ha, as if)  I have practically been listening to the soundtrack non-stop all month, something I don’t think i’ll ever regret doing as it has introduced me to one of my current favourite artists. London Grammar are heavily featured on the soundtrack and have various songs, the soft yet harsh vocals of the female lead really do make there songs addictive. I have put a video below of my favourite song, that has pretty much been my January soundtrack, give it a listen.
In other news I brought myself a Christmas present on Boxing Day, after much contemplation I decided to but Radio 1 Live Lounge 2014 which basically is a mixture of all of the live lounge sessions including such big names as Ellie Goulding and The Script. By far my favourite track would have to be Ben Howard’s cover of Hideaway, especially the last twenty seconds that’s some impressive guitar playing!

TV Shows:
Believe it or not I have actually watch something other than Our Girl all month! Impressive I know. This month I have been hooked by Forever starring Ioan Gruffudd ( I know I can’t pronounce it either) as medical examiner Dr Henry Morgan, who first died 200 years ago whilst working as a doIMG_0065ctor on a slave ship, and hasn’t been able to die since. With every fatal incident (trust me it happens a lot) he appears naked in the nearest body of water. Whilst trying to solve his own immortality he teams up with NYPD Detective Jo Martinez (Alana de la Garza) to solve various crimes across the city. The reason I was attracted to this show was that it was a procedural crime show with a difference, flashbacks are cleverly placed in each episode that helps the audience to gather information about Henry’s past, the things his seen and the deaths he has faced. Attempting to hide his ‘condition’ from his co-workers he is approached by a mysterious figure who claims to suffer from the same issue. Who is this guy and can Henry deal with him on his own without exposing his secret?
I highly recommend this show to anyone who likes a good crime show, it has plenty of humour, and chemistry (not just that involved in pathology) it has a great backstory and mystery at the end of nearly every episode. UK viewers can find it airing on Sky 1 and On-Demand. As for the rest of you I have no idea!

So there is some of my favourites of this month, sorry it isn’t longer I didn’t want to bore you with a load of little things! I will see you Tuesday for a Book Banter instalment! Have a great weekend!

Happy Reading,

Mid-Month Favourites

As I sit here it occurs to me that I haven’t done anything all day apart from watch Covert Affairs and sung along to a lot of songs, badly may I add. But doing nothing got me thinking, what have I enjoyed so far this month? A lot of things, so here is my mid month favourites.

Shock horror! A beauty part on a book blog, this couldn’t possibly be correct? Well I went there, I happen to own a lot of beauty and hair products so I thought I would mention them, is that such a crime? My first product is ‘Clearskin® Clear Emergency Instant Spot Treatment’ aka my lifesaver, this product is the best that I found for treating spots quickly or overnight in many cases. This is product I apply if I get an unexpected outbreak of spots; it calms the redness and helps to remove it naturally opposed from squishing and squeezing them until you have red raw skin. Overall this product is pretty damn amazing for the price and quality of it; I really do love Avon products.

The main reason of my use of the spot treatment is that I have recently been using a couple of different flavoured lip balms, and every time I applied them I would get an outbreak of spots, so after some intense searching I discovered that the flavours that companies add to their lip balms can make some people have extreme outbreaks in spots. Despite this I enjoyed them before I realised what they were doing to my skin, the two that I particularly liked were: Vaseline Limited Edition Lip Therapy -Queen Bee and Avon Lush Lemon Lip Balm. So I’ll be sticking to the Aloe Vera version of the Vaseline lip therapy from now on.

Lip Balms

TV and Film:
I have been watching quite a bit of TV so far this month, but I must confess I have been experiencing a slight TV hangover (yes that’s a real thing) from a bbc drama that aired last month and was released on DVD this month. ‘Our Girl’ starring the critically acclaimed Lacey Turner, first hit our screens as a short film last year, which saw Molly Dawes join up for the army and how she coped in a world that was very different to the one that she was raised in. Now Turner reprises her role as the feisty Private alongside Iwan Rheon and rising star Ben Aldridge, tells the story of the army medic on her first tour in Afghanistan who then gets tied up in a love triangle between her superior Captain James (Aldridge) and equal raking Smurf (Rheon) . Set on the backdrop of war, this love story will have you rooting for the characters one minute, and on the edge of you seat the next. The DVD is out now, and you can see the trailer below.

The next TV show that I have been watching this month is the award-winning, extremely popular, Orphan Black. The series revolves around a set of clones that are all played by the enormously talented Tatiana Maslany, who you original see as Sarah Manning, the British punk-rock chick whose life is turned upside down when she sees a woman who looks just like her commit suicide and she sees an opportunity to assume this woman’s identity. But what she doesn’t know is that there is other people who look exactly like her. This show is funny, creepy, and just a generally great thriller that will keep you up at night with the need to watch more.

For someone who has a blog surrounding books I have only read two books this month for pleasure, and one of them was a short story so doesn’t really count. But the one that I enjoyed the most was the one that I have had to read for my A-Level English Literature class, okay so it’s actually a play, but who’s being finicky. ‘Death of a Salesman’ by Arthur Miller is a play that I have anaylsed over and over again and now know better than the back of my hand, in various essays I have looked at the relationship between characters and how the play is structured. Surprisingly, this has made me love the play a little bit more. Miller tells a story of Willy Loman, a salesman who is struggling to achieve his dream in the society of late 1940’s America and how this affects him both mentally and physically, but Miller doesn’t just focus on Willy within this tragedy. He shows us how the need for him to achieve his American Dream of being popular and well liked affects his family relationships and how he sees the world, the play is shown from the perspective of Willy so is a little difficult to understand at times, but it really does show the reader how much this man is affected by trying to be a person that has been forced upon him by the world he lives in. This play is one that I highly recommend to people to both read and to go see on stage.

So I hope you enjoyed my first favourite type post, I hope I didn’t ramble for too long. Let me know what you think of these things and perhaps share with me your favourites of the month in the comments below.

Happy reading,