Thor: Ragnarok (2017) (Review)

thor-ragnarok-poster-mainTitle: Thor: Ragnarok
Based on: Thor by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, and Jack Kirby
Directed by: Taika Waititi
Screenplay: Eric Pearson, Craig Kyle, and Christopher Yost
Music: Mark Mothersbaugh
Cinematography: Javier Aguirresarobe
Edited by: Joel Negron, and Zene Baker
Production Company: Marvel Studios
Producer: Kevin Feige
Distributed by: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Cate Blanchett, Idris Elba, Jeff Goldblum, Tessa Thompson, Karl Urban, Mark Ruffalo, and Anthony Hopkins
Type: Fiction
Genre: Action,  Adventure, Comedy, Science Fiction
Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and brief suggestive material.
Release Date: November 3, 2017imdb_logo_a_l
Running Time: 130 minutes
Source: Tickets purchased from Landmark Cinemas.

Imprisoned, the almighty Thor finds himself in a lethal gladiatorial contest against the Hulk, his former ally. Thor must fight for survival and race against time to prevent the all-powerful Hela from destroying his home and the Asgardian civilization.

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Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017) (Review)

mv5bmtkxmdaxnduynv5bml5banbnxkftztgwotc3mzcxmji-_v1_sy1000_cr006741000_al_Title: Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
Directed by: Luc Besson
Screenplay: Luc Besson
Music: Alexandre Desplat
Cinematography: Thierry Arbogast
Edited by: Julien Rey
Production Companies: EuropaCorp, Fundamental Films, BNP Paribas Fortis Film Finance, Universum Film, Gulf Film, River Road Entertainment, and Belga Films
Type: Fiction
Genre: Science Fiction, Action, Adventure
Producers: Luc Besson, and Virginie Besson-Silla
Distributed by: STX Entertainment, EuropaCorp
Rating: Rated PG-13 for sci-fi violence and action, suggestive material and brief language.
Release Date: July 21, 2017imdb_logo_a_l
Running Time: 117 minutes
Source: Tickets purchased from Cineplex Canada.

Synopsis: A dark force threatens Alpha, a vast metropolis and home to species from a thousand planets. Special operatives Valerian and Laureline must race to identify the marauding menace and safeguard not just Alpha, but the future of the universe.

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The Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (2017) (Mini Film Review)

18192998_661250467417506_7754737169370615427_oTitle: The Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
Directed by: Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg
Screenplay: Jeff Nathanson
Based on: Pirates of the Caribbean by Walt Disney; Characters created by Ted Elliott, Terry Rossio, Stuart Beattie, and Jay Wolpert
Music: Geoff Zanelli
Cinematography: Paul Cameron
Edited by: Roger Barton, and Leigh Folsom Boyd
Production Company: Walt Disney Pictures, and Jerry Bruckheimer Films
Type: Fictionimdb_logo_a_l
Genre: Action, Comedy, Adventure, Fantasy
Producers: Jerry Bruckheimer
Distributed by: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Rating: Rated PG-13 for sequences of adventure violence, and some suggestive content.
Release Date: May 26, 2017
Running Time: 129 minutes
Source: Tickets purchased from Landmark Cinemas.

Synopsis: Captain Jack Sparrow searches for the trident of Poseidon while being pursued by an undead sea captain and his crew.

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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) (Film Review)

MV5BMTg2MzI1MTg3OF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNTU3NDA2MTI@._V1_SY1000_CR0,0,674,1000_AL_Title: The Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Directed by: James Gunn
Screenplay: James Gunn
Based on: Guardians of the Galaxy by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning
Music: Tyler Bates
Cinematography: Henry Braham
Edited by: Fred Raskin and Craig Wood
Production Company: Marvel Studios
Type: Fictionimdb_logo_a_l
Genre: Action, Science Fiction, Comedy, Adventure, Superhero
Producers: Kevin Feige
Distributed by: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Rating: Rated PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi action and violence, language, and brief suggestive content.
Release Date: May 5, 2017
Running Time: 136 minutes
Source: Tickets purchased from Cineplex Canada.

Synopsis: After saving Xandar from Ronan’s wrath, the Guardians are now recognized as heroes. Now the team must help their leader Star Lord (Chris Pratt) uncover the truth behind his true heritage. Along the way, old foes turn to allies and betrayal is blooming. And the Guardians find that they are up against a devastating new menace who is out to rule the galaxy.

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Yuri on Ice / ユーリ!!! on ICE (Anime Review)

Yuri_on_Ice_Key_VisualTitle: Yuri on Ice
Director: Sayo Yamamoto
Writer: Mitsurō Kubo
Studio: MAPPA
Original network: TV Asahi
Original run: October 6, 2016 – December 22, 2016
Episodes: 12
Type: Fiction
Genre: Contemporary, Sports
Source: Funimation

Summary: Japanese figure skater Yuri Katsuki faces a crushing defeat during the Grand Prix finals and heads home, unsure of whether or not he wishes to continue his skating career. After a video of Yuri mimicking Russian figure skater Victor Nikiforov’s routine goes viral, Victor decided to become Yuri’s coach, much to the dismay of his coach, his fans, and his fellow Russian skater Yuri Plisetsky.

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The Traitor’s Kiss by Erin Beaty (ARC Review)

29346870Title: The Traitor’s Kiss
Author: Erin Beaty
Type: Fiction
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Romance
Imprint: Imprint
Publisher: Macmillan
Date published: May 9, 2017
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 352
Source: Book distributor

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A physical copy of this book was kindly provided by the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.

Summary: An obstinate girl who will not be married.
A soldier desperate to prove himself.
A kingdom on the brink of war.

With a sharp tongue and an unruly temper, Sage Fowler is not what they’d call a lady―which is perfectly fine with her. Deemed unfit for marriage, Sage is apprenticed to a matchmaker and tasked with wrangling other young ladies to be married off for political alliances. She spies on the girls―and on the soldiers escorting them.

As the girls’ military escort senses a political uprising, Sage is recruited by a handsome soldier to infiltrate the enemy ranks. The more she discovers as a spy, the less certain she becomes about whom to trust―and Sage becomes caught in a dangerous balancing act that will determine the fate of her kingdom.

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Cheese in the Trap / 치즈 인 더 트랩 (2016) (Kdrama Review)

Cheese_in_the_Trap-p1Title: Cheese in the Trap
Revised romanization: Chijeu In Deo Teuraep
Hangul: 치즈 인 더 트랩
Director: Lee Yoon-Jung
Writer: Soon Ggi (original comic), Kim Nam-Hee
Network: tvN
Genre: Melodrama, romance, comedy
Episodes: 16
Broadcasting Dates: January 4 – March 1, 2016
Language: Korean
Country: South Korea
Source: watched online on www.dramafever.com

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Synopsis: Hong Seol’s life is filled with work and study, and her diligent attitude is often taken advantage of by others. Yoo Jung was similar in the past, but has developed an exacting system of give-and-take to protect himself. Behind his solicitous smile lies a cold mind that demands payment for any mistakes it notes. When he wants to start dating Seol, she finds herself caught in a tangle of problems as the consequences of his past and present actions come to light.

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The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi (Review)

51m2xbpq0yl-_sx328_bo1204203200_Title: The Star-Touched Queen
Author: Roshani Chokshi
Type: Fiction
Genre: Fantasy, YA, Romance, Mythology
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Date published: April 26, 2016
Format: Hardcover
Page Count: 342
Source: Library

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SummaryFate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you’re only seventeen?

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unraveRoshani l an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.

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Reply 1988 / 응답하라 1988 (2016) (Kdrama Review)

reply-1988-poster-540x764Title: Reply 1988
Revised romanization: Eungdabhara 1988
Hangul: 응답하라 1988
Director: Shin Won-Ho
Writer: Lee Woo-Jung
Network: tvN
Episodes: 20
Broadcasting Dates: November 6, 2015 – January 16, 2016
Runtime: Fri & Sat 19:50
Language: Korean
Country: South Korea
Related TV Shows: Reply 1997 (tvN, 2012) and Reply 1994 (tvN, 2013)
Source: watched online on www.dramafever.com

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Synopsis: In 1988, Duk-Sun (Hyeri), Jung-Hwan (Ryoo Joon-Yeol), Sun-Woo (Ko Gyung-Pyo) and Dong-Ryong (Lee Dong-Hwi) are high school students and Taek (Park Bo-Gum) is a go player. These five people have been friends since they were little kids. They all grew up together and are neighbors to this day. Their families are also very close to each other. They always hang around Taek’s room and spend time together.

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Before I Fall (Film Review)

beforeifall_ep_poster1Title: Before I Fall
Directed by: Ry Russo-Young
Written by: Maria Maggenti
Based on the Novel by: Lauren Oliver
Type: Fiction
Genre: Drama, Mystery
Producers: Jonathan Shestack, Matt Kaplan, Brian Robbins
Distributor: Open Road Films
Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic content involving drinking, sexuality, bullying, some violent images, and language-all involving teens.
Release Date: March 3, 2017
Book Publisher: HarperCollins

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I was invited to an advanced screening of this film courtesy of HarperCollins Canada.

Synopsis:  Sam seemed to have everything a teenage girl could want: popularity, a hot boyfriend, cool status, fun friends, loving family and seeming happiness.  But beyond the superficial, Sam’s life wasn’t so charmed. She was one of a clique of high school mean girls who made life hellish for those different from them.  When she’s killed in a car accident, Sam is forced to relive her last day on Earth seven times in order to get things right.  She attempts to make sense of what befell her and gain a better understanding of herself and others. In the process Sam evolves, learns to be a good person and comes to accept her fate.  As narrated by Sam (Zoey Deutsch), this touching story, based on the 2010 young adult novel by Lauren Oliver, has a Groundhog Day structure, with a dramatic arc.

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