Shine On

This post re-caps my series of events on Wednesday, 12th January 2011. Today some of us CBS people living near the Hills (and some others who did not) were going to spend time with a few people who were about to go back to work for the new year; and so today was kind of the last chance to have some fun with them. We has a bushwalk planned out, followed by a barbeque, and then other random stuff in the afternoon.

We all met up at Nat’s house in the morning, and though it threatened to rain most of the morning, we still decided to go ahead with our bush walk at Cumberland State Forest and we headed there around 12pm. We had lunch first and I helped barbeque up a bunch of meat that Seb and Steph(en) bought. There were spiders around the barbeque, which freaked a lot of the girls out. Most of the guys took this opportunity to exaggerate the fear, and also to capture the moment on camera. During this time, there were people playing the ukulele and others playing Uno.

We finished lunch around 3pm, somehow it went on longer than expected; and we finally went on a short bush walk. Seb continued to sing along to the ukulele, making up lyrics on the spot as he normally does, I’ll upload a 9 min video to Facebook in due time. The walk wasn’t too bad, but due to the moisture a lot of insects and stuff came out. There were webs here and then, and the girls again screamed for their dear life because they were just that scary.

Afterwards we goofed off in the community centre for a while and then went to the shops to get ice cream. We got back to Nat’s place and decided to have 25 inch pizzas from a nearby place (which is only in the Hills). A couple more people came over for dinner and we all shared two large 25 inch pizzas. I guess we must’ve overthought things and in fact it became a struggle for 13 people to finish two of those large pizzas. After the whole group had finished one off we were all pushing our stomachs up a hill. At the end of the night we had to make people take slices of pizza home.

Throughout the night we watched Bride Wars and The Dark Knight, whilst having some interesting conversation, which may or may not include sexist comments and stuff haha. It was a fun day and shows that you can have heaps of fun just doing simple things (even if the pizza was slightly expensive). However, that is not the main point of this post.

SHINee

Oh, no I didn’t?! At the same time that all of this was going on, there were many other people who had gathered in the city to find tickets for a concert to see SHINee. I guess it’s not just any ordinary concert, it was the first time any famous Asian star/group (I believe) has come to Sydney (not Aus) to perform. And so today was actually quite important for the Korean music industry. Today’s concert was to “test the waters” and see how responsive the Australian (or Sydney) people were to Korean music.

As such I had friends (link to a fan’s post below – I know you’re going write one Sharon) who put a lot of energy into getting tickets and then making the most of their opportunity to see their beloved SHINee. From what I gathered on Facebook after I got home, tickets were being donated by UNICEF for a cost of $50, most tickets were handed out beforehand, and at the last minute to the show, people got let in free (probably not to be repeated again). That is a decent cost to see people as famous as SHINee. And judging from hearing of the success of tonight’s concert, there will probably be another one next one; but the tickets might be more expensive next year.

A few people uploaded their videos as soon as they got home, and from what I could see, a lot of people had their cameras out the whole night. But that is to be assumed since it is extremely rare to get something like this in boring Sydney – this was the first major K-Pop ever, right? The Koreans had some expensive cameras flying around as well, so at they decided to capture the moment on film, though I don’t think they’ll use the footage from tonight too extensively; not much point I think.

Well that’s my simple report on something I didn’t even look deeply into; but I will admit I was very interested in going to see SHINee, even if I don’t know what their names are and I only know several songs. I said on my Facebook that I didn’t regret missing out on SHINee to enjoy a day out with friends and I still stand by that statement. Since I’m not familiar with SHINee’s work all that much, I wasn’t too devastated to have missed out on $50 tickets to their concert. The main thing that would’ve got me going was the fact that tickets were relatively cheap (I even had to chance to get free tickets off other friends as well, if I had asked), and so in a sense I had traded away this opportunity for friends, which isn’t a bad thing, don’t get me wrong; somehow I can’t help but feel like sacrifices were made today haha. I didn’t lose much, but rather I gained something more important than watching 5 guys dancing to songs with poorly written English lyrics. “Oh no he didn’t?!”

But of course I would definitely go next year (almost added “again” but then realised I actually didn’t go haha). But yes I won’t miss out on the next opportunity. I just wished the Japanese weren’t as stingy as the Koreans – though I believe Sydney is full of anime sooks who don’t know anything about recent trends in Japan, let alone it’s music industry; it’d be a waste of them bringing bands like “UVERworld” or “the gazette”.

Link to a fangirl’s post will be here when it’s up. Right here

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My Belated 19th

Wow the last few weeks have been pretty packed; I haven’t even had time to sit down and reflect over what has actually happened over those weeks. One step at a time. I decided to set my party a fair time after my actual birthday for a number of reasons. The first was that I didn’t actually want to have a party, until people actually asked me what I was planning to do for it. I pretty much couldn’t decide between having a party and not having one. I don’t know, I guess I wasn’t in the hype to hold one this year. But I eventually dragged myself into the decision, so I had to push the date back to allow for more time to plan. The second reason was that I had my driving test very soon after my birthday, pushed back because of NTE Mission, so hence I had to push my birthday back accordingly as well.

 

Guests for today’s party extended outside of my regular Baulko group for a number of reasons. A few of us were overseas and the rest of us are now sort of scattered here and there, so chances were that there wouldn’t be a large group for the party. And then I also wanted to try having a mixed group for a party; seeing what would actually happen. So my guest list was a mixture of high school, uni, CBS and church friends; quite a bizarre combination, but you’d hope that “Asian connections” would quickly drive away any unfamiliarity. All in all…16 came for the movie, 13 came for ice skating and 22 came for dinner; in a Venn diagram sort of format.

 

First thing we did was watch Avatar in 3D at Macquarie Centre. I wanted to use that venue for ice skating, but never did I initially think of watching a movie; it was going to be a long expensive day haha! A few people were persistent in wanting to watch Avatar, and unfortunately they only had Silver Seats for the non-3D sessions, which were all $20.50 without any Cinebuzz discount. I had hoped for Student Monday deals in case we did have to watch a movie but I guess that failed. By the time I got there, there was an unprecedented long queue which surely would’ve had anyone going: “Nah forget this!” I persisted as there wasn’t really any other choice, and against all odds I managed to bag 16 seats together; the only slight catch was that they were near the front, 4th row. But still, I managed to get seats and just in time too. Watching in 3D was definitely a worthwhile experience, and Avatar was quite a good movie. I won’t review such a grand movie, in case I get things wrong here and there, but for 3 hours it was definitely worth the $16 haha; plus a headache later on. Oh and that stupid blonde at the counter miscalculated the ticket prices and I ended up losing $20. I can’t believe I didn’t stop her in time. She said to me $173 for 9 tickets; which is so bull as you can tell 173 isn’t divisible by 9. And then 173 is a prime number, what the hell. So when I got $7 chance back the first time, I went back to her saying she gave me the wrong change; but she reassured me that it was right. And I don’t know why I couldn’t calculate it in my head that the actual price was $153, stupid “kenpatsu” >.<”

 

After the movie, a few people reparked their cars and we had lunch. More people then began to pour in for ice skating. Some people came late and had to pay the student price of $19, while we all paid the group discount price of…$18. Baulko Ice Arena snaps this place easily. The skates were really bad as well; I would never have expected it as my first time here haha! Ice skating was relatively fun, like I said, I haven’t been for more than a year, and we did have a large enough group to play tag on the ice; quite dangerous now seeing that there were so many little kids enjoying the holidays. It was sort of a packed session. That meant there was heaps of room for accidents, in fact there were. Heaps of people were stacking it everywhere; it was kind of hilarious. There were these two guys that stacked it ON TOP of each other; and they were both struggling to get off each other which looked really…ecchi haha! The two hours went by slowly, it was a good way to “relax” after the movie.

 

For dinner we had our first problem, which was leaving Ben back at Macquarie when we all drove off. Apparently it was Matthew’s job to notify me that Ben was running slow; and with the difficulty of keeping track of everyone present, I obviously forgot about him. So sorry. The people that didn’t ice skate went and got a cake for me, gave them money and stuff. We drove over to Carlingford Village to Jane’s Kitchen along Pennant Hills Road. It’s an expensive place but then other places were closed, and for one particular place…just not worth mentioning at all. The tables were divided into Baulko plus Aman, and then everyone else haha! Ben should’ve swapped with Brandon but Brandon wanted more food. That’s all nice but they eventually paid the bigger bill. I thought it fair that Kelvin and his $163 bill should be rewarded more than Jacky and Andy Wong and their $191 bill. Dinner was filled with trash talk on our table, as usual; sometimes getting a bit too graphical for our liking. Never knew Aman was vegetarian, so we had to cater for him, with dishes that he didn’t really touch and which we had to give to the other table later; I thought Matt and Yit would’ve gobbled all our food. The bill seemed really fair, because of the “rice money” as well as 10% surcharge for public holidays, forgot about that when I organised dinner, the surcharge.

 

After a bit of discussion, Nat opened her house for my party so we could have the cake there, Some people didn’t want to disturb the other guests, I was indifferent haha! Some people didn’t stay so we bid farewell to them, the rest of us drove over to Nat’s. We mucked around in her house for a while, played with Milo her dog, Taboo. Yeah. I remember Adrian was trying to through a Ball at Ben’s? head while he was on the treadmill, full missed him and knocked the flyscreen right off it’s hinges where the window was. Took a couple of minutes to repair that funny scene. Nat was there watching it. Nah, we weren’t going to trash her house like that haha! The guys ushered me into another room as they set up my cake and then we did the usual Happy Birthday sequence. Luckily I prepared well this year round, otherwise I would’ve burst into tears of joy, like last year nearly haha! Yes, I’m not the type where anything about me is ever celebrated so they don’t mix well with my emotions.

 

Anyway we split the cake, we stayed a little longer and then we left. Such an epic long day, so many things went right and only a few went wrong. I was somewhat glad I had organised a party, it was cool. Aside from the presents, I was just glad to have been able to have fun with friends, from all sorts of locations and “backgrounds”. One thing I did learn from today is that having a lot of guests as a party really takes a toll on the host’s capabilities. It was hard keeping track of everyone, and hard to make sure I was talking to every person. I don’t know if I want to do this again next year; but maybe I’m just tired from organising too many things in the coming days haha! All photos of the day were taken by Andy Wong, I was a bit too busy to take my own photos bah.

 

A big Thank You to everyone who came, even if it wasn’t the entire day. It was great spending that time with all of you, I really appreciate you guys taking the time out and spending a day with me. Thanks again!

 

Oh that’s right I forgot, here is what I got from all of you ❤ ❤ ❤

 

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MLM Buffet

On Sunday night we went out to Shangrila, or however you spell that hotel, to have a buffet dinner. I don’t think there was any special occasion to have a buffet; we probably just went for fun. So we all met up at Yvonne’s place beforehand, and then carpooled our way to the city.

 

In short, the food was rather nice; the only thing that was hard to stomach was the choking price of $35 per person, but that was only for the first 10 people; we had 15, so 5 had to pay the full price of $68?! Most definitely not worth the variety of food that they had. And I’m sure it would’ve been very difficult to eat up that value in food. It was hard enough doing that at Andy’s sushi buffet dinner party.

 

I’m still trying to work out a good strategy to maximise the amount of food one can eat throughout the night; to maximise the amount value to compensate the sunk cost of the buffet. Of course that’s just Asian thinking really; but you feel a lot of fail when you get full quickly and can’t eat enough to increase the value. I’ve worked out that, like a marathon, you can’t rush it all and hope to achieve the most from that; it won’t work. It’s got to be patient and slow eating, such that digestion helps generate more room in your stomach, and you also won’t “feel” full as much either.

 

But that’s just my two cents. There was some okay seafood: prawns, crabs and oysters. The prawns and crabs weren’t that great, the meat wasn’t very tasty; but the oysters were pretty good. There was sushi, potato salad. That was the cold food. Hot food included some weird Indian rice, vegetables, more crab, sirloin beef (which wasn’t that great either) and various other Asian-like meat dishes, and some curry. There wasn’t much variety unfortunately and it didn’t take long before managing to try every single dish being offered.

 

Dessert was heaps better; there was so much variety there; lots of chocolate, dark chocolate mousse, black forest cake, lemon-mango stuff, more chocolate, and fondue. Damn what type of stupid spelling is “fondue”, had spell check verify this for me. Guess I take back my scoff at Nat when she spelled it this way; I seriously would’ve thought just “du” rather than “due”. But anyway that was about the food there was. The chocolate fountain was pretty awesome, sort of.

 

Highlights of the night included camera battles between Jason Yap and Marrilyn, who each brought their professional cameras. Well I’m so sorry that I only intend to buy a cheap camera; I guess it won’t suit as a photographer for media and such, but oh well, I’ll just have to make do with it, once I actually buy the camera that is. Other than that, our main entertainment was supplied by Nat (as usual); who as expected was just *palm face* or *giggle* throughout the entire night. First with her enthusiasm and trouble at cracking the shell of the crabs, with just a fork, up until being a complete hog with the fondue; always going back for more strawberries. She had at least 10 strawberries, over 6 sticks, all covered in chocolate, etc. She just wouldn’t stop, and didn’t seem to have any intention of doing so. *palm face*

 

There was also fireworks at about 9pm, we had a pretty good view of them. They were probably for Australian Idol right? Doesn’t matter who wins; they’re both losers in the end, ever since the second season when they let Casey Donovan win because she shook…Bob Carr’s hand? That premier guy yeah? They were short and rather ordinary I guess. And just randomly adding, there was this Chinese guy on the table next to us who just spammed oysters, he grabbed like a dozen of them in one go; and he kept going back to grab that many. That was just uber greedy of him, uber Asian of him really. But people from our group eventually; not for themselves but to share with everyone else. I had 7 the entire night; grabbed 4 the first and second time, donated one to Nat.

 

After all the food, I was at my “regular” critical level again; but not as bad as last time, there wasn’t ice cream to end it all. But I was still rather sensitive to sudden movements and yeah it was a bit hard to walk and stuff. We all went back to Yvonne’s place where we watched Transformers, more shenanigans from Nat with her slightly immature and fake cheers for “Optimus Prime” and the “Decepticons” zzzz. We left at about midnight; didn’t finish the movie and just for the record, I still have not seen the entire movie in one sitting yet. No my money!!!

Five Day Weekend

Well, thanks to Labour Day, this week has provided me and many other people a five day weekend, which is pretty cool; it’s almost like another mid-sem break. No uni from Friday all the way to Wednesday. I took this as an opportunity to have some fun and obviously catch up with other people DESPITE the fact that the smarter thing to do would’ve been to catch up on work that I’ve left behind because of all those exams in the past three weeks. Oh well; that’s what happens when you’d rather have fun now.

 

Friday

On Friday I went out with my high school group; most of us came, only a few decided not to turn up; half our group was free that day while the other half was free after lunch time. At first it was me, Matt, Tim, Chris and Jono who met up and headed off to North Sydney in the morning to Ryo’s Noodles, which has the best ramen in Sydney, or so Tim and Chris say. So we went to verify that fact; took a train to St Leonard’s and walked the rest of the way; it did talk a while to walk but obviously not long enough for Matt to finish chewing his long bread roll he got at Woolworths prior to lunch.

 

The restaurant (soon to be reviewed by Chris – I’ll add to my blogroll) was a tad small and had limited seating capacity, it also didn’t look very fancy but then that’s fair if you consider such a place to have good food; it should not be easy or quick to replicate. The prices went a bit higher than what we originally anticipated but the food definitely was good. It does come at the top for the best ramen but not by that much. The restaurant was out of the way and the quantity per serving wasn’t all that exciting. What made the ramen good was the soup and the noodles. The soup was nice and rich with flavour and rather thick, like proper soup, not like water. And then the noodles seemed to have been made more delicately, and didn’t seem to have come from a packet or something, like other restaurants haha!

 

After lunch we went back to the city and met up with the rest of our group and we all went to net cafe; we haven’t gamed together in a long time and we’ve all turned to different types of gaming yeah. We played DotA and I would still say that I still stand second to none in my group. Regardless of what they may all say, to identify the exact skill of a player cannot be done solely by seeing the teamwork. Being an all-round player for any game is being able to play every role as well as each other. We played UT and also CoD4, CoD is pretty fun I wish I could practice more at first person shooters but at the moment my laptop can’t handle the newer games and I’m still waiting on a new desktop once Windows 7 comes out.

 

We gamed for a good 3 hours, played a lot of games; it was okay although we were all seated in different places. It was 5pm then and we couldn’t decide what to do then. It was too early for dinner and yet it didn’t seem right to go for 3 hours of karaoke, 1 hour seemed too little as well. But fate helped us decide when we found that Big Echo was full at the time so we went for dinner. Went to the Japanese restaurant across the street, where we were joined by Diana and Arthur o.0” First time we actually went out for dinner together as a group haha.

 

Afterwards we weren’t satisfied for the day so we added another hour of karaoke with that; Big Echo was full again even after dinner so we went back all the way to K-Squared. Too much karaoke in the past 4 weeks T.T” And it’s all too repetitive as well: Love Story, Viva La Vida, and a bunch of Linkin Park voice-wrecker songs. It was still fun but for one hour we really had to be time efficient between 8 people. The night ended with a huge storm just as we got on the train; somewhat glad we left the city before the storm got worse at night. It was quite a fun day; very long, very expensive T.T” but fun.

 

 

Saturday & Sunday

The weekend was just as long; stuff day in and day out. On Saturday we had our church meeting at Kenny’s house. Met the entire day and afternoon to reflect, go over plans and such. Quite a lot to organise, lots of things to fix up and stuff but generally our meetings are a waste of time in that we achieve so little in so much time; very inefficient T.T” But I guess sometimes that’s bound to happen, we just have to put up with it.

 

Later that night we had our Mid-Autumn festival. I didn’t actually stay for all of it; just for dinner and then had Quentin drive me back home. Feel utterly pathetic still not having my Ps while he’s had them for more than half a year now T.T” How pathetic indeed *sigh*

 

On Sunday we still had youth group and had to come up with a game the night before; so that was last night out. We had a Trivia activity with all these bogus questions from Jess; they were all fairly random like “Name the four Wiggles” and “Which two words have no other rhyming words?” and even “Who was the first person to go out into space?” It’s those sort of o.0” questions which you would consider quite random. “But I know the answer to the,” says Jess. Weird.

 

Had to plan a few things in the afternoon for Monday and I guess somehow the night just wasted away and once again I got no work done.

 

 

Monday

Today I went out with Sharon and Erica to watch “Up”. I think Sharon was the one who raised the idea; but then I had to drag the nearest guy, Ken, into this because it’s kind of suss having just the three of us wandering around Towers yes? Not to stranger, no, who cares what they think. It was just in case people I knew saw us. Of course Ken was sort of out of place in terms of age but then if you consider us as a church group then it’s okay haha!

 

Finally took advantage of the Monday Student deal offer, $7 tickets wow! They are awesome I’m glad I watched a movie today because of the value haha. One problem we had today was that Ken didn’t have his car, and me and Erica can’t drive. Which meant that the only driver available was Sharon; thanks Shaz you make a good chauffeur haha! So she had to come round and pick each of us up and then drive us to Towers; we had plenty of time but the cinemas were pretty packed today considering it was a public holiday.

 

Felt a bit sad that everyone who walked into the movie was a kid; whereas you have us grownups, oldies, whatever, walking in and watching it haha. I think we laughed just as much as the kids too. It was a pretty good movie; it wasn’t all laughter at every point; it had a few grown up elements in it too, like all Pixar films, which was good. We had lunch afterwards. I chose not to conform to having burritos but I guess I’ll probably try one next time T.T”

 

We walked around afterwards and went clothes shopping; guys follow girls >.<” Does it always come to that? It was alright I guess, except for that bit when Erica was trying to make me try on high heel shoes. I reluctantly gave in, just to not be a spoil sport, had trouble fitting my fat male feet into them so I did eventually give up. I guess that’s why they have a girl and guy section in most shoe stores because there’s a difference in the shape of the feet? I don’t know. We walked around for a good hour as Erica went hunting a for a good dress to the formal; visited a lot of stores. It was an interesting afternoon, just to cut it there without saying anything more. Sharon drove us home before that huge storm came which blew the power for a while.

 

And there you have my long weekend, well there is one more day tomorrow but I swear I really have to use it for work otherwise I am going to have wasted it (for a good cause – the word is “spent” then), but I have no regrets having fun with my friends; just really need to get back to work T.T”

MLM Socials

This week also provided us with social events by out young adults’ group MLM. On Tuesday night we had hot pot, a rather messy but enjoyable event where instead of cooking our own food, our leaders Ken and Yvonne did most of the cooking while we ate; I guess that wasn’t how it was meant to be but oh well, it was still good. Len bought all the food, but we had so much left over, we could’ve done without half the food; save half the price on the budget. We also had a few more people come than usual; ie, the first-year uni girls, who for some reason rarely show up.

 

At first we helped with setting up, that was a different part of the night altogether. And as Sharon has kindly blogged up, there was some misunderstanding of how vegetables are to be washed. You can read her blog for a summary of what I actually did; but I will say that the way I washed the vegetables was not the “right” way, and a more hygienic solution could’ve been obtained. I guess I was too tired from everything over the weekend to think about how to wash a ton of vegetables given only one sink. I’m not really the people in the household that washes vegetables, I’m mostly the cook rather than the person who prepares the ingredients haha. But oh well.

 

       

       

 

Oh and the highlight of the night was this thing I randomly brought up. We had eggs as well but nobody used theirs so I fiddled around with mine. And then I remembered something I saw on ABC when I was really little. It was saying that if you held a raw egg (I think raw) between your fingers (only) along its longest “diagonal” and you try to squish it, the egg will not break. I made several attempts to prove it wrong but maybe because I was tired and too weak to come close to breaking it anyway. Ken tested my hypothesis but then he didn’t really fulfil the requirements correctly so his experiment was a fail; and at the hint you should’ve guessed that the egg actually broke when he squeezed it, and everyone knows what would happen after that yeah? Take a look:

 

 

 

And then on Thursday night we went out again where Ken had a lot of free tickets to see Transformers 2. His generosity is much appreciated, especially with the Hot Pot so close. Ken drove me, Mandy and Jacky, and I forgot how everyone got there; all I remember was that Nat drove Jess and they both turned out super late; wonder why? o.0”

 

Anyway the movie was really good. For a three-hour film I’m surprised that it was action-packed and entertaining the entire time, unlike crappy Pirates 3. There were quite a lot of jokes in the middle which were hilarious, a lot of characters acting funny or getting into funny fights, all coupled with some minor course language; perhaps that was the key to making some of the jokes funny haha.

 

But all in all it was a great movie, and I don’t really want to review it but yes go watch it. But disappointed that the movie ended with Optimus Prime standing next to Sam on a plateau uttering the same “I am Optimus Prime…” stuff like in the first movie, same ending frames before credits? Umm, no?

 

Afterwards we had dinner; the 6:30pm movie ended three hours later and by that time all the fast food stalls were closed, the only thing left was KFC and McDonalds; dam! Well we had McDonald’s where Nat and Yvonne? tried to drink Ken’s chocolate sundae with straws, rather than use spoons; I’ll upload that vid soon.

 

And yeah the night ended like that; I’m really tired after all of this and yet there was more on Friday (today), but I’ll blog that up tomorrow, too tired now from all of this stuff this week, maybe that’s why I’m sick, from all of these activities.

[Review] [Film] The Day the Earth Stood Still

 

Please be warned that this review also contains spoilers.

 

Just looking at the title of this film kind of makes you shudder for a bit. But then 90 minutes later you’ll probably find yourself walking away with a scowl on your face, an unsatisfied hunger that the title first imposed you with. Apparently this film has already been done back in 1951 which may explain why its 2008 counterpart seemed to lack so much.

 

General synopsis: An alien ventures onto planet earth bringing a message of doom for mankind. Mankind has weakened the planet and need to be erased before the damage is irreversible. One woman and her son, determined to fight against this prophecy, try to convince him to change his mind; that mankind have the potential to change and restore planet earth.

 

Actually, if I had never known that this movie had already been filmed before, I would’ve said it was a fair idea to address the environmental issue [of climate change], although the impending problem at the moment does appear to be the financial crisis. Unfortunately even so, the film does poorly to address any sort of environmental issue that needs responding to. In fact the movie is so ambiguous you can probably interpret the storyline in any way you want to. And with post-modernism kicking in, you just can’t resist reading the film in a multitude of ways.

 

It’s good to see Keanu Reeves come back onto the movie scene, though aging now, as the alien “Klaatu” (clearly a dodgy name thought up in the 50’s). Reeves’ character enters from a giant sphere that lands on the earth. The sphere was rather well-designed, its surface a swirling mass of blue and black; sort of resembling clouds or even the waves in the ocean. It was a rather mesmerizing colour that invoked both fear and wonder.

 

The film did well to jump into near-climax action in the second (after a strange but later-explained opening scene). Planet earth gets threatened by massive destruction from the afore-mentioned sphere which was feared to collide with the earth in mere minutes. Not such a bad moment although the pace was quite short-lived. Reeves reveals himself when he emerges from a cocoon, naked and bald. In fact, one cannot help but be reminded of a similar moment in “The Matrix”; a shamefully re-used concept with the same actor, not smart.

 

Reeves plays a fairly appealing mellow character; lacking emotion in that “terminator” sort of way. However such a role doesn’t seem suited for him. He was full of action back in the days of “Speed” and during the “Matrix” trilogy he only hid his emotions rather than be void of them entirely. I would’ve wished his character had done more on the action side, his character was just too passive, while all the action was spread over to the military and police.

 

The heroine for the film was Helen Benson, played by Jennifer Connelly, along with her son Jacob, played by the son of WIll Smith, Jaden. I’m not too familiar with Connelly’s acting style but as for young Smith, he did well to portray the typical black child with both parents dead and ending up with a foster mother. The kid acts well to play out the character that keeps his cool throughout all the pre-apocalyptic events that take place.

 

Apart from these three we have the giant robot “Gort” which in the 2008 version, resembles a black Ironman; again thumbs down for the resemblance. Later Gort dissolves away into millions of black locust-type insects that can decompose metal and any non “natural” material. So mankind would simply be destroyed by a plague of locusts. The film did well again earlier to mention that similar spheres mentioned above were acting as “arks” to preserve non-human wildlife. Unfortunately it did bad to refer to the “plague of locusts” as the impending “flood”. Still, small recognition for the attempt at Biblical allusion. Further along, after Gort breaks down into the swarm of locusts and breaks free from the underground base, military personnel focus fire everything at the black cloud mass, again mirroring a similar moment from “The Matrix: Revolutions” when the Sentinels break through into the dock. Too many “stolen” scenes from other films, which is truly shameful.

 

The plot barely made any sense at the very end. Klaatu makes a move to stop the destruction of mankind when he sees Jacob finally acting nice to his foster mum (for not apparent reason, mind you). And that seems to serve as the evidence that mankind can change and fix up the environment. Hardly any logic involved there and therefore an unjustified ending. The climax comes in the form of Klaatu trudging through a blizzard of locusts and laying his hands on the sphere he emerged out of, causing the locusts to “die” and fall to the ground like flakes of snow. This moment actually legitimately paralleled the opening scene of the film which didn’t have any meaning but similarly portrayed an actual blizzard, etc.

 

As I’ve said before, the film can be interpreted in so many ways. The origins of Klaatu are so blurred that for me as a Christian, it is actually possible to read Reeves’ character as Christ coming down to warn mankind of impending destruction but later pulling back to allow more time to “repent”. This is just how ambiguous the film actually is. I won’t go further into other readings because there are way too many.

 

Interesting thing in the film was the scene where Reeves meets up with an old Chinese man (apparently another alien in human form) and they begin conversing in Mandarin. Reeves demonstrated a rather strange knowledge of Chinese in that he handled the language well, although over-emphasising some syllables by using the English consonants. Still it was interesting to watch Reeves speak Chinese, if indeed that is worth 90 minutes.

 

A short film, and one that hardly leaves as big an impact as the title originally did. A huge mistake to actually work off the 1951 classic version and definitely poorly done in terms of modern standards. Effects would’ve been better if they hadn’t already been used in other films. Bottom line:do not watch it. You might get an interesting message out of it, if any, but definitely not worth putting up with the lame storyline.