THE MAGNIFICENT FILM UNIVERSE OF A24

If there was ever a film company that displayed a cutting acumen for successful films, A24 would be a shoo-in contender. Founded only in 2012, the company has curated an archive of films known for their commercial and critical success. It’s indie done right – by capturing the flavourful powers of personal expression, along with…

THE DOUBLE LIFE OF JIUFEN

There was already so much I was looking forward to. The pretty tea houses. The scenic views. The romantic lanterns along the street. The only thing better, was to experience it for longer. So for my visit to Taipei in 2014, my focus became more about Jiufen than it was about the main city. And…

NO MORE EXCUSES SINGAPOREANS – IT’S ALL ON YOU

“Singaporean or not, people will want some form of security or peace of mind at time like this especially those with old forks and kids at home. So why we always wana label our fellow citizens those bad names? And how we know that those in q were all Singaporean? This is just simply human…

BOMBSHELL (FILM REVIEW)

Playing out one of the most important chapters – the prologue if you will – of the #MeToo movement, Bombshell drops us into the frenetic offices of Fox News to witness the buildup to the sexual harassment allegations levelled at media mogul Roger Ailes. Director Jay Roach and writer Charles Randolph doesn’t go full The…

TOOTSIES & THE FAKE (FILM REVIEW)

For the uninitiated, tootsie is a affectionate term used in Thailand for a campy gay guy. And celebrating this without restraint, Line TV created a series based on the online accounts of Thachpacha Setthachai, a proud tootsie who does a Carrie Bradshaw and recalls the many humourous episodes he has with his three best friends…

JOJO RABBIT (FILM REVIEW)

In today’s era of instant media and trigger-happy sensibilities, presenting a film about Nazis and their famed chancellor is like a game of dice… with razor blades. Fortunately under Taika Waititi’s treatment, Jojo Rabbit doesn’t draw blood, but instead, a mixture of laughs, shock, or indignance. How you enjoy this film might be an indicator…

FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF LIBERTE – TRUE WIRELESS STEREO HEADPHONES FROM ATTA GORA

There’s no shortage of wireless earphones in the crowd-funding realm. And I’ve bought myself a fair number of them over the years. Atta Gora‘s version, launched in November 2019, surprised me with two things: One, the fact that it promised a first shipment before Christmas. Secondly, with it’s refreshingly hipster palette and Nordic-inspired design. It…

THE AERONAUTS (FILM REVIEW)

To be honest, the trailer was a little underwhelming. The Aeronauts seemed to pitch the adventure of a lifetime in the air, and with Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones offering captainship, the premise seems to have some heft. But are a sea of clouds and fluttering butterflies enough to strike wonder in this age? With…

IS CYPRUS THE NEW GREECE?

There’s nothing quite like Greece of course. In fact, there’s never any real replacement for one particular country when you get down to the details. That said – if one is asking for a little twist from the (currently) Instagram hotspot, without loosing that formula or sun, sand, sea and stunning history, then Cyprus is…

DETENTION (FILM REVIEW)

Wrapping a terrifying story around a true period of human horror, Detention is a layered tale that’s heavy on scares, but also dripping ripe with messaging. Touching on the political scene in Taiwan in the 1960s, it unfolds in the White Terror period, which was an era of martial law in the country that lasted…

RACE START – HOW COMPETITION MAKES A DESTINATION COMPELLING

Every competition and race comes with a clash. Thankfully, it’s more of energy and excitement than anything negative. From World Cups to the Olympics, sports have pulled fans to events across the world and will continue to do so. While big brands such as the above, along with others like Formula One and Wimbledon, continue…

KNIVES OUT (FILM REVIEW)

There’s a certain appeal to whodunnit movies that always keeps the audiences coming. One would hazard it’s due to our inherent curious nature, as well as an intrinsic engagement of our own sleuthing skills that keeps us addicted. It is this successful formula that has birthed a few renowned genre writers – such as Sir…

SIGNATURE EVENTS TO WITNESS IN 2019 AND 2020

Every season its mood, every country its character. Festivals are often the pinnacle of expression for both, teeming with plenty of culture and activity. Some of these might have been around for centuries, while others are sparks that exploded into wonder, but each of these events have become iconic to these destinations, and sometimes even…

MORE THAN JUST AMALFI

Because of how famous it is, the Amalfi Coast is often thought as just a small stretch around the town of Amalfi itself. But in truth, there’s 50 km of coast to drive down, dotted with quaint towns, villages and hamlets each with their own specialties. If you need a guide on which of these…

ZOMBIELAND: DOUBLE TAP (FILM REVIEW)

Sequels have it hard. Zombieland raked in commercial and critical success for taking the audience off-guard in a period of zombie titles, so what can Zombieland: Double Tap bring to the table? The answer is – plenty. The franchise capitalises on three things: astute witticisms, irreverent self-awareness and unabashed caricultures. With that, the sequel has…

90 YEARS OF DISNEY – THE PROCESS FROM PAST TO FUTURE

It’s no exaggeration to say that Disney‘s allure is a multi-generational affair. From 26 October 2019 till 29 March 2020, visitors to the ArtScience Museum can revisit close to a century’s worth of animation styles and legacy in the brand new exhibition Disney: Magic of Animation. The event draws upon the archives of the Walt…

THE REAL STORY OF THE KILL TEAM

It’s often said to be a necessary evil, but that can just as easily be a marketing spiel. War is war. For nation, for justice, for religion, for power, for greed, for land…. the actual reasons for war goes on, hiding behind a nobler banner. The Kill Team is a film directed by Dan Krauss,…

COUNTDOWN (FILM REVIEW)

There’s nothing terribly unpredictable about this – but that might not be a bad thing at all. Like Scream, Final Destination and any franchise with over 5 chapters, formulaic horror has an appeal of its own. Countdown has nothing of a reputation to bank on, but it follows a proven model and manages to get…

THE CURRENT WAR (FILM REVIEW)

If you’ve read up a little bit about this project, then you’ll know that this was one of Weinstein’s last work before his entire film career and company collapsed from the sexual allegations. The Current War, with its polished production and high-profile casting premiered to a small (and unimpressed) crowd at Toronto International Film Festival…

BEYOND THE LITTLE MERMAID

It’s one of my all-time favourites – the originally dark story of the sacrificial mermaid may have had significant impact on my love life, but that’s a story for another day. Because of this, Copenhagen‘s iconic statue has always been a beacon for me when it comes to sights to see. It may not be…

A WINNING FORMULA: THE SINGAPORE NIGHT GRAND PRIX

With last year’s Crazy Rich Asians pulling the spotlight on Singapore as a luxurious haven for the elite, much travel plans must have been fixated on a calendar event – the Singapore Grand Prix. Now in it’s 12th year, the racing event that once was notorious locally for its disruption to traffic, is now viewed…

METAMORPHOSIS (FILM REVIEW)

South Korea is really gunning for their own Exorcist hit. From TV titles like The Guest (2018) to movies like The Priests (2015), The Wailing (2016), House of the Disappeared (2017), and most recently, The Divine Fury (2019) and Netflix’s, Svaha: The Sixth Finger (2019), it seems that the priest protagonist remains as enigmatic as…

REVENGE OF THE PONTIANAK OR DENDAM PONTIANAK (FILM REVIEW)

Probably one of the most enigmatic and popular supernatural entity in this region, the pontianak is to Southeast Asia what Sadako is to Japan.  Based on popular mythology, she is the ghost of a woman who died pregnant or during childbirth, and boy is she angry! Appearing as a beautiful woman to lure victims to…

SCARY STORIES TO TELL IN THE DARK (FILM REVIEW)

“Why she so curious?” “I thought she returned the book?” “Why they return to the house?” To a movie reviewer, nothing is scarier than a viewer who needs to verbalise her mind. And to the teenage girl in question, the answer to all of your question is: Because this is a movie, so just watch…

ENCOUNTER ALL THE SHADES OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA

If you self-drive or love coach tours, Western Australia’s routes will give you a bang for your buck. All along the coast and inland, you will find a smattering of sights to keep you engaged along the route. The colours stood out clearly for me in my mind’s eye, so I wrote out these itineraries…

THE WAYS YOU CAN FROLIC IN FIJI

It’s true that Fiji isn’t the most accessible place, even if you live in the nearest countries of Australia, New Zealand or Papua New Guinea. But isn’t that the case for anywhere that’s really out of this world? Fiji may be most widely known for that bottled water, but ditch that plastic and go to…

A BIGGER SPLASH (FILM REVIEW)

If Call Me By Your Name is remembered by the peach, then A Bigger Splash will be remembered for its pool. The oasis in the sunny island of Pantelleria bears silent witness to the mansion’s going-on, which runs from tension (both of the aggresive and sexual sort) to therepeutic retreat. Acted out by a quartet…

BINDING SOULS (FILM REVIEW)

I used to study in a pre-war school, and so as you might guess, the grounds were filled with stories. The fact that actual riots and war heroes were part of its history made it all the more compelling. So haunted school plots have a particular relevance to me, especially when they involve unspoken topics,…

FAMILY FESTIVAL FUN – SEE 23 OF THE WORLD’S BEST

With kids in tow or the elderly involved, it’s not easy for the average family to design a holiday that will please everyone. That’s where festivals come in. Festivals are amazing showcases of a country’s culture, often bringing everything to one spot. Food, fun, cheer, and plenty of activities for the young and old, they…