Sunday, 27 April 2008

I've Been Tagged

Well knock me down with a feather, I have been tagged. The lovely Style Page has done the honours. 

My six unspectacular quirks are:

1. The first thing I do when I get up is make the bed.

2. The second thing I do is brush my teeth, this has to be done before I drink or eat anything.

3. I cannot drink fizzy drinks out of a can, it has to be poured into a cup

4. I always take my make up off before I go to bed, no matter what time I get home.

5,  I always look at the back of the book before I finish to see how it ends.

6. I am addicted to fab website Television Without Pity and love reading their commentary.

To play tag, here are the rule:

  • Link the person who tagged you
  • Mention the rules in your blog
  • Reveal six unspectacular quirks of yours
  • Tag six random bloggers by linking them at the end of your post
  • Leave a comment on each of the tagged blogger's blog and let them know they have been tagged.
  • Once your post is up notify the person who tagged you.

Enjoy and happy tagging!

Saturday, 19 April 2008

Chick Flicks have published their list of the best chick flicks of all time. 25 films have been listed with Clueless heading the list. With the news that Hollywood studio bosses are planning an output of Chick Flick titles for this year, it looks like the genre is finally getting its dues. According to this article in The New York Times, filmmakers are even going as far as to aiming the titles at men as well as women. This is great news for me as I am an avid fan of chick flicks and along with many Sophie Kinsella fans, I am awaiting the release of the film Confessions of a Shopaholic later this year. Till that date arrives I have the Rough Guide to Chick Flicks to keep me instead. The book is an entertaining guide to the films millions of women round the globe love; from rom coms, bio pics, melodramas and thrillers - it is all here to savour. Divided into sections such as the history of chick flicks, the must sees - the lowdown on 50 essential women's films, the faces - a profile on the sheroes and heroes of chick flicks, chick lits and chick flicks - looking at the fascinating relationship between books and films, women of the world - featuring fantastic material from across the world.

The Rough Guide to Chick Flicks is written by Samantha Cook who uses these words to describe the genre, "The chick flick. Most of us recognise one when we see one but as a genre it is difficult to define. Regarded more of a guilty pleasure than as an art form, it is a breed of movie that's given little attention in comparison to other more recognised genres. Mention chick flicks and people come over all condescending, bandying words around like light, frothy formulaic. This book dosen't knock froth. In fact it thrives in it. What, afterall would a cappuccino be without froth, or a bubble bath" This title is a really fun read as it teaches you the ins and outs of the genre and also points out a few titles that make essential viewing. Check out the website here.

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Beautiful Within: Finding Happiness and Confidence in Your Own Skin

I normally don't do 'self-help books' - you know the type that are rammed full of female bravado such as 'c'mon girl, how to get that life that you want and then some.' This is the type of material that Oprah Winfrey endorses and has welcomed into her influential book club with open arms. Personally, I have found them to be very cheesy and a tad bit patronising. Well that was until I read Beautiful Within: Finding Happiness and Confidence in Your Own Skin which is written by soul diva and TV presenter, Mica Paris. Part bio and part self help guide. the title teaches you how to create the life that you really want and how to be truly happy. This book serves as a wake up call for women whose lives have reached a pinnacle and need help to get it back on track. Drawing on experiences from her singing career, past relationships and life, the co-presenter of What Not to Wear tells us how look and feel good in all areas of life. She tackles the issue of eating disorders, images of women in the media, how to maintain a great relationships with family, friends and men and more importantly, how to have a wonderful relationship with yourself.

Beautiful Within is a compact hardback with a white cover that has a picture of Mica sitting zen like. It is organised into nine section with chapters such as: Who Says the Grass is Greener, which gives you strong mantra on how to stay focused and never lose sight of your goals. Loving & Learning is the harsh realities on how you can never change anyone and the only person you can change is yourself. Woman to Woman teaches you how to flush out the toxins in your life and embrace the goodness. Each chapter has a mini summary at the end that reflects on the lessons that have been learned. Beautiful Within also contains gorgeous illustrations of various women looking ethereal while rushing around doing their thang. If you are like millions of women in this country and around the world who are juggling many balls then this book is for you.

Beautiful Within: Finding Happiness and Confidence in Your Own Skin is out now!

Sunday, 6 April 2008

27 Dresses

Always the bridesmaid and never the bride is a common phrase and one that a lot of single ladies get to hear one time too many. Enter Jane Nichols, played by Katherine Heigl, an all round sweetie who just does not know when to say no. She will do anything for anyone even to the expense of her own happiness. Things such as being a bridesmaid at wedding after wedding (27 in fact) and even two on one night and dashing about like a grass hopper to each wedding reception. Madly in love with her free spirited boss, George played by Edward Burns, Jane plods along at her work place desperately hoping that he will notice her. Her heart is crushed when George falls head over heels with her self absorbed younger sister, Tess, played by Malin Akerman but she manages to put her feelings aside and help the couple plan their wedding. At one of her many stints as a bridesmaid, Jane meets Kevin Doyle played by James Marsden who - unknown to Jane - is covering the wedding for his wedding column in the New York City Journal. The two clash right away due to their contrasting views on marriage. Jane is the eternal romantic optimist while Kevin is a true cynic who detest the idea of marriage and dislikes writing his column even more. When Kevin comes across Jane's diary he takes a peep and sees that it full of back to back weddings and he immediately pitches a story to his editor about the perpetual bridesmaid in the hope that it will advance his career. To add a twist into the tale, Jane is a great fan of Kevin's wedding column but as he writes it under the pseudonym of Malcolm Doyle, Jane has no idea that it is penned by him.

27 Dresses is very entertaining and draws great performances from Katherine Heigl and James Marsden but moreover it also serves as a wake up call. If you have ever held a light for that special someone and waited around in the hope for that wondrous day when he or she would see the light and declare their undenying love - then this film is for you. 27 Dresses contains many themes such as loyalty, friendship, honesty and good old fashioned romance as well as delusion. The film teaches you that if that person who you have been mooching around for a certain period of time has never shown a romantic interest in you then - guess what - he or she never will. Despite how many nice and helpful things you do for that person you will always be good old Jane.

My first exposure to Katherine was seeing her play Gerard Depardieu's daughter in the comedy, My Father, the Hero back in 1994. She shone like a bright light in that film and I thought that she would rocket to stardom but funnily enough it never really happened. However a role in the last year's hit film, Knocked Up and the TV series Grey's Anatomy made certain of Katherine's future as one of Hollywood's leading ladies. The success of 27 Dresses combined with her Marilyn (esque) look at The Oscars now has the industry touting her as heiress to Meg Ryan's crown of the new queen of rom coms. In my opinion it is a worthy title but I am sure a certain Renee Witherspoon will have something to say about that. Also great to see James Marsden in a big film. the last time I saw him was in the mystery thriller film, Gossip. Anne Fletcher does a great job in what is her second directing job. The dancer turned choreographer turned director has had amazing success with dance film, Step Up and Step 2 the Streets so it is no surprise to me to hear that she also produced another of my favourite films, The Wedding Planner. Talking of favourite films, Aline Brosh McKenna comes up trumps with a cracking script but then what else would you expect from someone who produced the script for The Devil Wears Prada and Laws of Attraction.

Friday, 4 April 2008


Imagine a TV show that has an all female house share with a male house share across the corridor. They all get on famously, they hang out together, fall out and hell some even date each other. Sounds like Friends right? No it is an internet show called Quarterlife that revolves around the lives of a group of twenty something creatives. The show is a coming of age series that tackles all the issues that you face at that age as well as making choices that will effect the rest of your life. The main protagonist is Dylan, played by Bitsie Tulloch, a frustrated writer who has landed a job on a woman's title. Dylan fuels her passion for writing by blogging (writing and filming) about the perils of her life as well as as her friends. Her best mate and confident is Debra, played by Michelle Lombardo - a dynamic lass who makes time for everyone except herself. She is in a long term relationship with Danny, played by David Walton and wants to cement their courtship by setting up home with him but unfortunately Danny has other ideas. Then there is Lisa, played by Maїté Schwartz who has everything going for her; looks, talent, personality but also extreme low self esteem that manifests itself in self destruction. Jed, played by Scott Michael Foster is best chum, house mate and business partner to Danny and neighbours to Dylan and co. Oh and he is also in love with Debra.

Taking the lead from Katemodern and Lonelygirl15, Quarterlife is presented in the form of 20 minute lifestyle webisodes that are easily accessible. The show is created by Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick, who brought us Thirtysomething and Once and Again, and producers of My So-Called Life. The pilot episode was aired online in November 2007 and climaxed in March 2008. Aside from a brief stint on NBC the show has been aired strictly online on the Quarterlife website as well as on its MySpace page. The Quarterlife website as acts as a social networking space for creatives but I don't think they pull it off as the site has too many things going on at once. Saying that the series is very enjoyable and extremely compelling. It takes a while to get into it but after the the third webisode I was totally engrossed and I was very disappointed when it ended. Do yourself a favour and check it out. In the UK we had a wonderful show called This Life well this is the US version.