Friday, 31 July 2015

Finale of Film Epics Week

Felt a bit bad for missing out on watching an epic film yesterday, so I sent off the week by watching 3 films instead! First two aren't really fully fledged epics, but are pretty dang good films in their own right. And funnily enough, they are both about cars.

If you have seen the great 90's action film Speed then you may consider it a spiritual successor to The Wages of Fear. Four men are tasked with transporting a mass shipment of nitroglycerine 300 miles across South America without the proper safety precautions. As a result, the slightest bump along the journey could cause a mass explosion. It's genuinely terrifying to watch at points, while Speed is a lot more high-octane, this film provides a slower, more cerebral experience where at any second, you think their truck could blow up. Even when their trucks are going 5mph your heart will be racing.

On the complete opposite end of the spectrum Mad Max: Fury Road is a grand return to the franchise, George Miller has clearly been sitting on ideas on how to top Road Warrior, and he succeeds in nearly every aspect. The action is huge here, and really, really good. It surpasses the standard set by Michael Bay since a lot of the stuff actually feel very creative, especially when paired with the astonishingly good visual and character design. You are always seeing something new and it'll either make you go 'wow' or 'phwhhaa' when you see it. All round good stuff, especially if you see it with friends - it's not a complicated film by any means, just a damn good ride.

Lastly, to round off Film Epics Week Louis and I tucked into Seven Samurai. If you are unfamiliar with the plot a user on Icheckmovies summed it up perfectly: 'It's basically A Bugs Life without the bugs.' While some consider it the grandaddy of many action genre tropes, it does feel slightly dated at times. That said, it was a lot funnier then I expected and that really assisted in developing the characters. Kurosawa complete achieved what he set out to do here but I would hesitate to call it his finest work, as several online sources claim. Currently that honour goes to Rashomon.

Now that Epics week is over it also marks a point when I can officially say I have seen the first 114 films on the IMDB top 250, without gaps. Every single film I saw this week was on that list and I'm slowly closing the gap on what many consider to be recommended viewing.

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Computer Woes part Deux

More PC woes as I spent most of the day waiting on a new power unit for my machine, while it's a great bit of kit, it didn't solve my problem. The issue seems to stem from the graphics card itself as my computer just refuses to boot while its on. Louis and I are baffled by the problem, we even tried putting the card in his machine and the same problem came up. I have resorted to sending it back for a replacement as I may have gotten a dodgy one. I'm just hoping now that it will work first time when it in and I'm not stuck with exactly the same problem.

Since I was so wound up in my computer mess I didn't actually get a chance to watch a film today during 'Epics Week' That said, I am just about to boot up another episode of The Decalogue, the 10 part Polish TV series loosely based on the 10 Commandments. This series has been a real slow burner for me, I started watching back in January and I'm only 6 episodes in, but I kinda like that. This is a show that you simply cannot binge watch as each of the ten parts are set up like mini-movies which are designed to linger in the mind, long after the credits roll. To quickly throw the next episode on would discredit the previous one, stories of love, murder and tragedy are all elegantly contained in a very simple story told through images with minimal dialogue. Watching them feels like re-watching a dream or a memory and the real power of all of Kieslowski films are so difficult to put into put your finger on, and that exactly what makes them so brilliant. 

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Once Upon a Time in America

You can't do much better than 'Once Upon a Time in America' for a midweek film epic. Sergio Leone has such a style of film-making that makes every second feel pivotal to the experience, it was hard taking my eyes off this gorgeous film, even over its 220 minute run-time. Long pauses and quieter moment are saturated with a soundtrack that has compliments the film perfectly. There is a nostalgic and haunting resonance to the music that crawls inside your mind as you watch the characters look over mementos and stories of their past, and their history is often covered in blood. The story centres around the lives of some street hoods who make it big during the prohibition period. We see them starting off as kids up until their hair turns grey and the changes can be heart-breaking to see.

Everything is glued together by some really excellent scenes of grand violence or mischievous comedy. But my favourite moment by far involves a little boy and a cake topped with whipped cream, it's not even hugely important to the plot, but for character development, the scene had an almost holy quality to it which was beautiful to watch; moments like that just don't happen anymore in cinema.

Some consider this to be Lenoe's masterpiece. While I would struggle to argue why this is superior to The Good, The Bad an The Ugly or Once Upon a Time in the West, it is a difference kind a masterpiece and almost achieves everything it sets out to do.

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Computer Part Hell

Got off to a good start today. I ordered a bunch of parts to upgrade my computer, including a graphics card that effectively doubles my current power and turns my dusty old PC into a NASA supercomputer. Quite literally the first thing that happened to me today was Louis waking me up with a parcel with the card inside. I was delivered 4 days early so I was over the moon. Louis had to go to work though, and since I'm not hugely adept in opening up computers and prying things apart I thought I could wait until he came home.

Louis has also recently upgraded his PC and I got a horror story about him needing to take a hacksaw to a portion of his frame so he could make room for this new bits and pieces. So I asked Dad where I could find our little saw and he replied with 'Bournemouth.' Oh good, emergency trip to Wilko it was then. Once Louis came back from work we sat down and took apart every little bit for my machine so no nasty metal filings would fall into it while I sawed into it, it was only after I painstakingly removed every last screw that we realised that my new card fitted in very comfortably... without the need for a hacksaw. Guess I can add that to my non-existant box of DIY tools then.

So we installed everything and put it all back together only to find that the PC didn't actually boot up again. Turns out I need slightly more power in order to get my graphics card to run despite ordering it specifically so I wouldn't have to buy a new PSU. No matter though, with Louis' Amazon Prime I should be operational again by Thursday so until then, Film Epics Week can continue:

Tuesday's film was Lawrence of Arabia, supposedly Spielberg watches this film before he directs any movie and after seeing it you can begin to see why. The film remains an absolute marvel to watch simple due to the staggering amount of production that must have been necessary. You can tell that David Lean's production coordinators presented him with 50 extras and hoping that was enough, only for him to say '50?! Bah! I'll need at least 400 extra for nearly every scene of this movie!' To which the production team say 'please, David, no.' But they did it, and by golly it paid off. The sheer scale can knock you back at points and for it's time it must have been something really special. 

Monday, 27 July 2015

Film Epics Week

I'm going to go ahead and consider this to be my 'Film Epics Week' where I'll be getting around to watching a handful of the most outstanding films from my watchlist. These are the ones I've been putting off watching because they have a run time that typically exceeds three hours and seeing that I have a lot of spare time at the moment it seemed like the stars have aligned for me.

First up was The Godfather:Part 2 which has been at the very top of my watchlist for about three years. I am a little ashamed to admit that I never really got the hype of the first film and frankly my opinions were not changed after watching this one. I'm going to chalk it up to that fact that I'm not getting this series. Deep down I know there must be some reason why its so beloved by fans of the film world, but I just don't see it. The story is underwhelming, the characterisations is not tangible and the Robert De Niro segments about Vito Corleone's past added barely anything to the experience. At least the first film had some excellent and iconic moments that are still referenced to this day, the sequel has none of that though. Maybe I need to re-watch this in a few years time but for the time being, it was just a well acted mob-movie.


Sunday, 26 July 2015

Inside Out

While the cinema was packed with kids I still had a blast watching Inside Out. I had lost a little bit a faith in Pixar in recent years, WALL-E and Up were fun, yet poorly paced, Brave was cluttered with no appreciation of quiet time and while I haven't seen Cars or Cars 2 I can hazard a guess that they might not be my cup of tea. Trailers for Inside Out also seemed a bit spotty, I can remember texting Mark over sneek-peeks of the film and none of us knew what to make of it.

Thankfully everything clicked after the opening moments of the film and it sets up a imaginative world and lore for the characters. Supposedly everyone is influenced by 5 key emotions: Joy, Sadness, Fear, Disgust and Anger. These feelings are personified as 5 cute creatures that man a control station within the psyche of an eleven year old girl that influence her actions and perceptions of the world and her memories, which in tern, make up her personality. This is all established visually within the beginning minutes perfectly.

There was clearly a really well thought out world which explains things like why we delete memories and how we deal with abstract thought. It would have been brilliant to see these concepts expanded a little more for the sake of the main story but instead they are used as quick gags and ironically forgotten. The humour is consistently on point though, while it won't split your sides, it will keep you braced with a smile thanks to excellent delivery from all of the cast, what else should you expect from some SNL members?

Above all else the quality of the animation itself felt like a real step up from anything else I'd seen before. All of the emotions had there own distinct style of moving and expressing themselves. Joy gets the most screen time and all of her actions feel energetic and contagious, extending her character from the realm of imaginary into believable. Disgust is the weakest of the 5 emotions as her inclusion felt necessary to oblige the 'kids hate broccoli' jokes, which are fine, but they never amount to anything meaningful. Facial expressions are highly comical and during sadder moments they can be down-right heart-breaking, especially when mixed with subtle body language which hit hard and make you really appreciate just how far Pixar animators are willing to go for their films.

While it doesn't quite hit the highs of Monsters Inc or Finding Nemo, Pixar's latest effort is a good step back in the right direction for producing films. Pixar's CCO John Lasseter often likes to quote Walt Disney 'For every laugh, there should be a tear.' They clearly took these words to heart as they crafted this great little film.

Saturday, 25 July 2015

Family BBQ of Legend

Journeyed up Richmond Hill with Rebecca this morning. Trekking uphill burnt off a few calories that I was inevitably going to be putting back on at the BBQ Rebecca's family were hosting. I got to plat kitchen assistant beforehand and made my signature salad for the shindig, 2 massive bowlfuls were prepped and they went down a treat. Some of Rebecca's housemates came down (Matt and Emily) and it was great seeing them outside of a uni situation where we could just chill and eat food together. We have collapsed on the sofa now after eating far too much as Rebecca repeatedly whispers 'what a good BBQ' while clutching her tummy.

Summer Gang

Friday, 24 July 2015

London Museum Bucket List

Back down in London visiting Rebecca and her folks over the next few days. There was still a few gaps in my London museum checklist so we hit up the British Museum and the National Portrait Gallery to get some of that delicious culture. The portraits were actually really worth seeing, the Tudor stuff was very neat and it was especially worth it just to see Rebecca geek-out over the history there. In between all of this we got to trek around London in the midst of a massive rainstorm which just didn't let up. With one small umbrella between us we got soaked. After I got back to her house I got a chance to change my socks to avoid getting trench foot, nothing beats sliding on a warm pair of dry socks on a wet day.

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Happy Birthday Mum 2015

While Mum in notoriously difficult to buy for, I think Louis and I did a pretty good job for presents. Half a kilo of Brazil nuts, chocolate and a Blu-Ray copy of Gone With the Wind did the job as she was pretty pleased with all that stuff. It got to about 2pm and since I had just finished season 1 of True Detective (great start, fizzled a bit towards the end) I decided to do something more with my day and bake my signature coffee cake for a Birthday treat. I tried making one of these back in February for Rebecca, it came out a little funky then but I think I have perfected the recipe since. And by that I mean perfected my capacity to follow a recipe. Dad was especially impressed that I went the extra mile by baking the cake, I figured there wouldn't be a 'blow the candles out' moment otherwise, and a Birthday without that is like Xmas without the tree, gotta be done.

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Big Hips

Braved the outside world for the sake of returning some shorts that were just too dang small around my waist. I blame this mostly on my wide and boney hips which could easily crush a watermelon if I landed on it like a pro-wrestler. Not ashamed of them, but on paper it makes me sound like a lard-o whenever I have to return clothing because it's too small around the waist. Going out also gave me the opportunity to get Mum a Birthday card. It certainly won't go down as well as an official Louis Durrant card, but I think it's fun enough.

Convinced myself to buy the recent port of Sonic 2 to Android as well which is a great redux of the 1992 original. While the game features a really swanky interface and even a whole new level which was initially removed from the game 20 years ago, the controls are difficult to get a feel for. typically I can blaze through about 4-5 worlds before ever losing a life, but now I am losing them rather quickly. Thankfully it lets you save and load your game so I know I'll be enjoying this one a lot on the go.

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Back to Blade Runner

Spent some time with my ex-housemate Jamie which I always look forward to. We discuss games and films we have experienced, and while we don't always share the same opinions I consistently enjoy talking about our views. I also just enjoy seeing films with him, and in this case he called me up telling me that he had never seen Blade Runner, a few hours later, we amended that problem. Funnily enough I recall not liking the film the first time I saw it, but I always look back on it fondly and associate it with my time doing film studies.

Going into A level film studies I was always told that 'This course will change the way you watch films forever.' That prospect scared me at first, maybe I'll over-analyse things or perhaps I'll turn into a cynical arse/film snob (I'm pretty sure some of my friends already think of me as the latter; haters goin' hate.) Blade Runner was the first film I had to analyse critically and independently for a piece of coursework and I actually really enjoyed the experience. Writing it served to enhance my enjoyment of the film despite the fact I remember not really enjoying it on my first watch. Now that I have sat through it a second time I can safely say that it is truly a excellent film and a marvel to behold. All the while re-watching it with Jamie I was thinking about how I critically looked into it's mise-en-scene and sound design for a small scene and now I could apply it to the whole thing with a real understanding for the film's style and intentions. Plus it was the coveted 'Final Cut' version with a few extra minutes of content and shiny visual update so it was just begging for a re-watch.

Re-visiting films can often be a very rewarding experience as you will often notice something new or find a new-found appreciation for it. Blade Runner, like all great classics, continue giving years after their initial release.

Monday, 20 July 2015

How to Train your Dragon 2

Sat down to watch How to Train your Dragon 2 with Mum this afternoon. The first film turned out to be a quiet favourite of mine so I had fairly high expectations of this sequel. While it tries quite hard to live up to expectations of the first film it never quite hits the same highs.

The villain is worth mentioning and is guilty of conforming to every cliche in the 'Bad Guy Book.' Monologing, giving heroes second chances, not killing heroes when there are multiple opportunities to do so, the works. A lot of films are often guilty of this, but here it was very obvious he is purely giving the other characters graces for the sake of their narrative. Some story elements feel a little bit imbalanced too and the whole thing moves at a speedy pace which leaves you without a grounded sense of place at times. The first half is broken into two story chunks which the film weaves between, problem is that one is far more dramatic than the other. We see an army of dragons and warriors on a march for global conquest which feels pretty pivotal in at one point, then the very next scene will focus on the main character just kinda, faffing around in they sky. Pacing is pretty awkward for the first hour but after that it straightens out a bit purpose is refocused. There is also a 'sad part' which just barely escapes being called token thanks to a single section of dialogue which rings true. 

All that aside, it captured the first film's heroic energy once again and some of the flying sequences are extremely beautiful. In fact, the whole film is gorgeous, there are some really stunning lighting effects for a few seconds at a time and some really small details like glistening snow and clouds being wafted by wings. I love that the film never dwells on these tiny details though and they just serve to immerse you further into the world. Despite all that, this is one sequel that feels very 'sequely.' A new story has been squeaked out for the fans and I am grateful for an extra chance to dive back into that world a few years later. But it's a case of diminishing returns for the series currently and frankly I don't think a third installment will surpass this one.

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Broken Age

Blitzed through the second act of Broken Age this morning and it quickly became a test of endurance. The final puzzle in particular really whittled me down beyond the point of frustration, instead I ended up caring less and lass about what was at stake as my irritation at the games slow load times and plodding quizs turned into apathy. I was finishing the game for the sake of finishing the game, as the credits rolled I felt nothing but a small wave of relief that I wouldn't have to do another god awful trial and error wire puzzle ever again. My disappointment with the game wouldn't have been so sour if I hadn't been so initially interested in the set-up from the first act, released last year which was a ton of fun. The concluding act was just not worth the effort.

Luckily a pukka breakfast of a bacon and egg buffin (a buff muffin) came to the rescue and perked me up for the rest of the day. Watching Louis play the first Witcher rounded out my evening, laughing and cursing at the game in all its flawed excellence like a private Let's Play video, I do enjoy moments like that.

2 More Down on the 250

Feels good ticking off some more movies over the Summer. I complied a pretty huge watchlist recently and while being at uni I've had trouble finding the time to see stuff. That and a vacancy in the living room never really was available for me much last year. Got through 2 more films on the IMDB top 250: The Treasure of Sierra Madre and Whiplash were both excellent films - Whiplash in particular which was a breath of fresh air. While trailers made me skeptical about how you could make a whole film about drumming, it was honestly really difficult to take my eyes off of it throughout. It was so totally absorbing from start to finish, at times you may resent blinking as it'll hinder you ability to see as much of this film as possible.

Friday, 17 July 2015

Back to Premiere

Signing up to a free trial period with Adobe's Creative Cloud I dived straight into editing our taxidermist's promo video. Going back to Premiere Pro reminded me of exactly why I first thought that Avid felt so unnecessarily unweildly, Premiere just does the things you want it to do where Avid throws a hissy fit if you try to do anything like other editing software; it felt good to be home. That said, I had a nasty aspect ratio issue occur after completing a large chunk of the edit which set me back a fair bit. That and the music was damn-near impossible to find. I dare you to go out and source some royalty free music for a taxidermy promo video, everything is either too video gamey, too comedic or too evil. Plus nothing sounds excellent when paired with the image of a dead crow being stuffed with balsa wood.

In the midst of all that headache I received my overall grades for my second year at uni and ended up with a distinction, AKA a first. I was ecstatic when I found out as only two other people on my course could say the same. Really chuffed with that and I'll certainly try to continue my efforts well into third year.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Promo Edits, Missing Footage Edition

My edit for the taxidermy promo is drawing to a close. Admittedly I have been putting it off slightly because I am missing a bit of footage recorded a few months ago. I instigated a witch hunt for that footage, asking my peers to double and triple check their hard-drives for the content but we have decided to call it officially lost footage. Luckily I have been able to scrimp by without it, we have the audio for it and about 4 hours of footage we can use instead, but the bit I'm missing was this lovely piece to camera our guy did which I could have really done with for the opening few seconds. Now I have to improvise slightly but it should all work out.

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Swing of Writing

Slowly trying to get back into the swing of writing again. In particular I want to write some more articles for Bournemouth's Nerve Media Online. Rebecca has asked me to do one on 'Why you should watch Game of Thrones' which I have started this afternoon. My biggest issue with writing these articles tends to stem from an inflated word count on my part. I sometimes push it into four figures when writing some things (my Top 10 games of 2015 was made a Top 5 on Nerve) but I am trying harder to reign myself and be more and more concise. 'Writing is Re-writing' That's the golden rule I keep telling myself as I delete chunks only to improve the wording.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Captain Phillips

Well, Paul Greengrass can actually make a watchable film. While his treatment of the Bourne films can be call outright criminal (Supremacy may actually be my least favourite film of all time) he actually delivered big time with Captain Phillips. Based on the true story of a mans capture by Somalian pirates, the films first 5 minutes start off quiet slow but then doesn't take its hand off the throttle. A very bumpy ride ensues for Tom Hanks who does a great job in the eponymous role and you ride shotgun with him throughout the film. If anything, it does get a little exhausting during the third act and in retrospect I couldn't really tell you how they filled up two hours with his story. Thankfully the handheld nature of the camera is dramatically turned down here so it doesn't look like someone with ADHD directed and it actually served to better involve me in the world of the film. Certainly look into this one if you are into hostage negotiation films like Dog Day Afternoon.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Dissapointment Came Early

Bit worrying today as two things failed to live up to expectations for me. Firstly The Warriors was a film that has been on my radar for a little while now. It recently turned up on Netflix and it has a cult status, figuring I'm typically up for any cult movie I dived in and was treated with a film that was a chore to finish. The premise sounded great at the time, a street gang are wrongly accused of killing a high-up guy who attempted to unify the gangs and are chased back home by the cops and rival street thugs. But the dialogue was simply awful as character kept changing their minds and generally saying things no human would ever say. Stiff delivery from the actors didn't help and the ending was just anticlimactic. The most annoying thing is that you can see the potential in it at every turn. At points it hints at being a commentary on an unstoppable youth culture but just barely hits the mark. In fact, a lot of the overtones come off as accidental, a by product of a script that wasn't very confident in itself.

Next up was The Witcher 2, a game I was also very excited to play after completing the original a while back. After grappling with it over the past few weeks I realise now that I kinda forced myself through the last hours out of my love for the first game, playing it felt like work rather than pleasure. I think its because I lost my sense of purpose once far to many characters and provenances were thrown into the mix. The more that were added, the most lost I felt and the more I felt that my in-game decisions couldn't be made efficiently; moral choices became misguided guesses. Hopefully that doesn't bleed into the third game which has gotten rave reviews so far.

Leave it to Alex Payne to make my evening feel well used however as Nebraska was a a quiet triumph. If you took Tokyo Story and The Straight Story and put them together, you'd have something a bit like this. A old man goes cross country with his son to respond to a letter from a magazine claiming that he has won a million dollars. Along the way there are some really genuine moments of comedy and heart-break in this low-fi flick that all have that great Payne feel to it. Louis and I sat down to watch this together and as the credits rolled we just quietly nodded our heads; it gets the Durrant boy's seal of approval.

Sunday, 12 July 2015

Up to Date with Thrones

I can now consider myself among the ranks of those who have finished watching the latest season of Game of Thrones. At last I can involve myself in conversation with online communities and even with my own family and friends about the series. Previously I had to throw my hands over my ears and hum quietly to myself like a 4 year old whenever a potential spoiler was coming my way. No more!

Though I must say, I feel like I have lost a small sense of purpose now that I have to wait another 11 months until more episodes come out. Gotta find something new to watch now, haven't seen a film since I started watch Thrones so maybes I should plough through my watchlist.


What better way to celebrate finishing an edit than going to play a Smash Brothers event. Su-BEER finally came around and I went in with high hopes, despite Louis telling me the singles tournament alone would take an estimated 200 minutes I pushed on through. Louis and I fought side by side for the doubles tournament and just barely came out on top while I firmly made myself the champion of the singles games. The host even made some trophies for us which was beyond cool, it will sit proudly on my wardrobe now.

Saturday, 11 July 2015

Edit Train needs Steam

Late start into uni today as James had a few errands to run including giving blood which I guess is as good a reason as any to be a little late picking me up. Churned out the interview stuff along with some extra music we recorded on the day, but one theme was very clear from the moment we walked into the edit suite: we had very little remaining motivation. This was the extra video we were making so while we put a lot of TLC into the first video, this one we subconsciously felt was taking up our time. We estimate there is only a small number of hours left-over of work to be done and then that'll be it. Can't wait to finish it all off now.

Friday, 10 July 2015

Titles Make Edits Awesome

Working hard on the edit again today. We trimmed about 8 hours of footage into two minutes of a really nifty little promo. We sat back and re-watched our final product and felt that something was missing. While it clearly showed all the aspects of the event, it possibly wasn't very clear to an outside audience. So we revisited it, but this time with titles! It was glorious, spending 30 minutes to find the right font (then change our mind completely) and put it to work. With a handful of them we even wiped them across the screen, revealing the words as the camera pans across a drummer and by golly, it looks good. Final touches going on tomorrow, after that we may have produced an amateur promo at record speed.

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Who has a Key?

Was woken up by the sound of a key turning in the lock. It dawned on me that I went to bed alone in the house and that no-one else, bar Mum and Dad back in Newbury, should have the key to the house in Bournemouth. Bewildered I woke up straight away and remembered that the builders were finishing the job today. This put me in a situation where people who think irrationally before their first cup of coffee struggle: How was I to make my presence noted? At first I thought of just strolling up and saying hello but after I left my room I spotted they left the front door wide open so I might have looked like someone who just waltzed in off the street. Sheepishly, I stood outside and rung the doorbell to announce myself. In hindsight, I made that a lot more unecessary than needed.

Otherwise I cracked on with the edit with Philpott. I captured and logged all my audio before going in so I really hit the ground running, churning out songs on request and prepped a handful of interview testimonials. We really ploughed through it today as well, getting well over half of it done. And it looks good! It looks really good actually, I'll certainly put up a link to it here when I'm done just to show it off because we are both becomming more and more pleased with how it is shaping up.

7 Thrones

When Louis told me that season 4 of Game of Thrones was strong I didn't quite know what to make of that. Now I understand his hype completely. After landing back in Bournemouth for our edit I found myself with nothing to do to fill up my evening aside from the 6 episodes of Thrones I brought with me. I intended them to last me until Saturday when in reality I just watched all of them tonight. While I feel a touch guilty about using up all of my entertainment material for my free time, I'm still pretty impressed with how well the series held my attention! To make matters worse, I saw one episode before leaving for Bournemouth, pushing it to 7 episodes today. Not long now til I'm up to speed with the rest of the world.

Tuesday, 7 July 2015


Louis and I have been training up a little in order to take the prize position at our Smash Bros tournament. Playing online with strangers is always a fun and interesting experience, recently we have been losing a fair bit but today we really destroyed our opposition this evening which gives us high hopes in the doubles category. Otherwise I have been waiting out my time until heading back to Bournemouth to start editing the music festival I recorded on Saturday. We have a big schedule planned for us and it'll almost be like a really short full-time job. Getting in early and leaving late each night until we get the job done.

Monday, 6 July 2015

Newbury Carnival 2015

Showed my chain-mailed face at the Newbury Carnival today. I 'trotted' along side as a knight of one of the past kings who was signing the Magna Carta, Louis also joined in as Robin Hood's bard and we had a jolly old time marching along the streets of Newbury. Although, I seemed to have missed a memo as everyone on our float was signing this dreadful 'Robin Hood' song which I didn't know the words for. It took them at least 20 times before I realised what was actually being sung, at that point, we past all the crowds so I figured the performance wasn't really lacking one extra voice singing a song.

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Big Mix

Suited up into my sound gear to cover a live music event down by the beach. 'Big Mix' was the name of the gig and it had a lot of younger performers along with several older groups but all of it sounded excellent. James and I were called in to make a promo video for the event so we recorded as much as we humanly could and now we feel like we can make something really awesome with the footage.

Perk of the job was this nice handwritten lanyard, made me feel very profesh, except I was the sound guy rather than the camera op, but it was still cool.

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Ducks and Coffee

Rebecca's last day in Newbury was commemorated with a nice cuppa tea next to our canal. We sat down alongside the ducks and pigeons and watched them fight over scraps from the previous cafe patrons. Funnily enough, the woman who served us at the pub the other day made an appearance at this cafe, as our server again. Small town.

Applied to a bunch of work experience places this afternoon to be a general runner so I'm looking forward to hearing back from a few of those companies in the coming weeks. Otherwise I'm back down to Bournemouth tomorrow for a sound recording job, I'm packing up my bags again a lot sooner than I expected.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Chasing the Sun

And I thought it was hot yesterday. By the time it got to midday Rebecca and I couldn't take the heat one bit. My room felt like a space station in direct orbit of the sun so we have just been trying to drink loads and keep cool. Rebecca found a spot in the hammock before I could and claimed it as her territory. Later on we went for a walk up to Donnington Castle to see the sun setting. As it turned out, this was more difficult than anticipated as the sun was behind a lot of trees by the castle so we infiltrated a golf course and sat down by the 18th hole to get a good sunset spot. We then got a bit lost on the way home as we went out of our way to not get spotted by other golfers as there were big 'No Footpath' signs littered everywhere. We got out without being seen and even took a victory golf ball home with us for the memories.