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Super Bowl 2014: Which Movies Scored a Touchdown with Social Users?

4 Feb

The Super Bowl saw several of 2014’s biggest movies go head to head with new trailers broadcast during the Big Game’s commercial breaks. These trailers soon appeared online and gave social users the chance to show their appreciation and excitement for movies such as Transformers: Age of Extinction, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and The Amazing Spider-Man 2.

So which trailer got social audiences most excited? And which film generated the sort of buzz that indicates an actual intention to view the film? Way To Blue conducted research which compared the overall number of social mentions and the ‘intent to view’ mentions for each of the 10 films one day pre-game and then on Big Game day itself.

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Unsurprisingly Transformers: Age of Extinction, which was the only film which hadn’t released any content prior to the Super Bowl, was the big winner in terms of overall buzz and intent to view. The Michael Bay film is the 4th in the Transformers franchise and stars Mark Wahlberg and promises audiences all the usual action  and explosions, as well as the debut of DINOBOTS!

Also unsurprisingly the big loser of the day was poor old Kevin Costner, who had 2 different trailers for new movies featured during the Super Bowl, however 3 Days to Kill and Draft Day ranked in 9th and 10th place respectively in both overall buzz and intent to view. It seems Costner isn’t as big a draw as he used to be in the days of Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves….

The biggest surprise of the day came in the form of Darren Aronofsky’s Noah, which managed to generate the biggest rise in Facebook likes for its dedicated movie page, despite only ranking 6th in terms of intent to view.

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It’s been a while but…

28 Mar

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The Road to El Dorado Part II: Bring Me That Horizon…

27 Mar

It’s been a while since my last post. Generally life has been pretty hectic of late. Deadlines, applications, decisions to make. I haven’t even had a chance to attend my temple of worship (the cinema) since my mind was blown by The Muppets. So dear reader, I apologise for this tragic lack of film related hilarity and advice.

However, we’re back in business (i.e. it’s Easter break and I have time to breathe again) and so for your reading pleasure I am pleased to present an update on my road to post-university life. Which consequently, is firmly going to be post-UNIVERSITY from now on. Over the past month or so my desire to enter into a PhD has waned. Seriously waned. It remains something I want to achieve in life, however I think I’ve had my fill of essay writing life for the time being. Never before have I uttered the words ‘I don’t want to read any more.’ For me, and those around me, this has been a serious and worrying trend to develop in someone considering devoting the next 3/4 years to further study.

Don’t get me wrong, I still adore Film Studies and I don’t for a second regret embarking on an MLitt this year. If anything, this year has done me a favour. I’d rather get this feeling in the latter half of a one year course, than a quarter of the way through a PhD. I said at the beginning of the year that the MLitt was testing the PhD waters, and I feel it has tested them very well.

I think the main problem is one that I mentioned in Part I of this little life diary; I have a need to get my hands dirty. At the grand old age of 23 I can’t help thinking  about what I want to achieve before I am 30. If I enter into a PhD now I won’t be able to get my proverbial hands dirty until I’m at least 27/28, and that is too close to 30 for my liking. So what things do I want to achieve? Here is the preliminary list (which generally gets added to/altered quite often and is in no particular order):

1. Visit New Zealand

2. Learn to drive

3. Cage dive with great white sharks

4. Attend all 4 tennis grand slams (1 down, 3 to go)

5. Publish a novel/have one of my screenplay’s made into an actual film

6. Live in California for at least a year

7. Volunteer for a few weeks at an Orphanage (probably in Africa).

8. Win the Best Original Screenplay Oscar (probably the most ridiculous but hey, I like to dream big and I firmly believe life is about aiming high)

Now for many of these goals you’ll realise (hopefully) that money is required and funnily enough student life doesn’t really lend itself to such expendable wealth (unless Daddy funds your life). There’s a big world out there and I want to experience as much of it as possible before I have to think about ‘settling down’ and all that malarky. Also, I just want to do something that isn’t writing an essay for a few years. Once I achieve all the above (except maybe number 8) I’ll PhD it up. By then I’m sure the need to learn will be burning away again.

And so I have now decided to exclusively embark on the road to employment and devote all my energy to getting myself a nice little job to get me on my way to infamy. I’ll be heading back to my homeland of London come the end of the summer (hopefully), so watch out world. Emma’s coming to get you and she’ll be taking no prisoners. And so as Jack Sparrow would say ‘now bring me that horizon…’*

*Please note I won’t be dressing as a Keith Richards wannabe pirate for interviews. Even if it would give me ‘an edge’.

(Look out for Part III coming soon. Unlike The Godfather it will probably be the best part, featuring updates on applications and living arrangements…contain yourselves dear readers, contain yourselves)

The Road to El Dorado Part I: PhD or job?!

1 Feb

The day I dreaded is finally here. Semester 2 has arrived and the only thing on the mind of us poor folk facing eviction from our cosy university world (more commonly referred to as ‘graduation’) is what the hell we are going to do for the next 5, 10 or 2o years. I successfully avoided this delightful circle of hell last year thanks to said cosy university taking me back for an MLitt. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not just one of these types that is throwing Daddy’s hard earned money at more education because I just want to avoid the real world for as long as humanly possible. I actively enjoy studying and know that the day I am forced out of it will be one of the saddest days of my existence (yes, I am a geek). However much I may moan about writing essays, I actually do really enjoy it (especially when writing about war films). I have always been the goon who enjoys going to school and learning something new, so the decision to pursue an MLitt was something like 75% academic goon continuation and only 25% real world avoidance.

However, with the finish line of my foray into post-grad life coming into view, I once again find myself debating where I want to go next. For months I have been banging on about a PhD. For an self-confessed academic goon it wasn’t a difficult life ambition to dream up. A PhD seemed like the holy grail of academia; 3/4 years of research and writing on a topic that is completely of your own device. I’ve been the sort of person who has struggled during the undergrad and MLitt with ‘compulsory modules’ that include a lot of stuff I wouldn’t touch with a barge pole given the choice (Giles Deleuze I’m looking at you). A PhD cuts out all the faff and lets you go crazy on the things that you really care about and enjoy. And heck, if there is one life philosophy I live by it is that you should always strive to enjoy life because tomorrow you might be dead.

However, now that decision day is here I find myself with a dilemma. A PhD is ultimately something that I want to achieve in life, but I’m beginning to have doubts that it is what I should pursue right now. I have the luxury in my academic subject of knowing that I could come back to it in 5 years time and the theory won’t have changed so dramatically that I would be left redundant. There is also the fact that funding opportunities are pretty dire at the moment. Funding is the curse of the PhD dream, the one thing that will disillusion you to the point of no return. It would all be fine if I had an extra £30,000 or so lying about. However, I don’t and that means you have to enter the competition for funding. This to me bears some resemblance to Ancient Roman gladiator fights. Actually, I kind of wish the competition was a physical battle. I’d back me and my rage blackouts any day. Alas, it is your academic aptitude and the whim of the university department that counts.It’s not enough to just have an undeniable amount of excitement for your chosen area and a love for eduction, you must be now deemed ‘worthy’ and every PhD hopeful will have the same polemic in their applications proclaiming their worthiness and desire and all that jazz. Needless to say, you are fighting a losing battle unless you can provide evidence of your unnaturally large multiple brains.

So having been disillusioned by the funding problem I now find myself toying with the idea of making money, hard-earned money that can one day be used to fund myself.  I’m pretty sure that is the only way I’m ever going to get the chance to explore the depths of memory and commemoration in comedy war films. Plus, lately I can’t shake this overwhelming feeling that I don’t just want to be the person who comments on film any more. I’ve always wanted to actually be a part of the making of films and lately that dream has been whispering away at the back of my mind. I know I’ve got something that the world will want to see, and that may sound big headed but hey, only a fool humbles herself when the world is so full of others eager to do that job for her (thanks George R.R Martin for that philosophical gem). So, I’m going to throw my proverbial hat into the ring and give the job hunt a try. With my ambitions I am probably doomed to fail. I won’t settle for a life of misery in some job I constantly want to get out of, even if it is a ‘step on the ladder.’ Stuff your ladder where the sun doesn’t shine. I’m pretty confident that there are some entry level jobs that won’t make me want to jump off a cliff after 6 weeks, and by God I will find them. I’m not going to be ridiculously picky. Anything involving film or music or television I’ll give a shot (within reason of course, I’m not about to give in to the dark side and enter any sort of financial department…shudder).

This little blog diary will attempt to chart my progress as I attempt to apply for both PhDs and jobs. Afterall, by some miracle I might get funding from somewhere and I’ll be able to tick that life ambition off earlier than realism might have expected. Aberdeen is looking most likely if anywhere, but even then it will be a gladiator fight worthy of General Decimus Maximus. God knows I would love to stay in St Andrews. There are many pluses, namely remaining in a department I know and love, with possibly the best supervisor that I can find for my topic. Alas, I feel St Andrews slipping away from me. I’ve resigned myself to thinking of these next few months as my last in this joyous place I have made my home for the last 5 years. However, wherever I end up come September I’ll know it is where I am meant to be. I’m a big believer in destiny, so whatever happens will have its purpose in the grand design, no matter how much you didn’t want it to turn out that way or whatnot. As long as you keep striving for happiness and fulfilment, you’ll never go wrong.

And whatever happens dear readers, I will endeavor to make it somewhat informative and entertaining. For those of you yet to come to this point in your life, maybe something you read here will help you out in the future. For those of you experiencing the coming hell with me, I hope you can find some mirth and solace in my ramblings to help you along your own road.

So keep your peepers pealed for part 2 and hang on to your hats because it’s going to be a bumpy ride…

Howdy blog world!!

27 Jan

After a successful semester of radio broadcasting, I thought it was time to branch out and create a blog for the show (The Reel Thing if you didn’t already realise..). Plus I just wanted to be able to say ‘yeah check out my blog bro!’ to random people that I meet…

So what can you expect from this totally awesome blog? Well once the show is back up and running the blog will serve as the over-flow for all the crazy stuff I have to cut from the show. I realised last semester that an hour is NEVER enough time to cover everything I want to say and play so hopefully you can all gain further depth and knowledge from my inane ramblings on this here blog to satisfy your Reel Thing lust. Mmm salty.

The blog will also feature my random thoughts on film related news and reviews of films that I feel should be shared with the world (’cause I’m just that generous).

Some things to check out: Click on the ‘Track of the Week’ near the top of the page for my weekly recommendation of a song from a movie. I make no guarantee you’ll like it, but give it a go and you might discover something wonderful… Also at the bottom of the page you’ll find my Hero of the Month, Big Screen Must See and a collection of videos I think you might enjoy.

And now a warning: generally this won’t be a serious thing. I don’t operate in the world of the serious. I like ridiculousness and my aim in life is to entertain. I’m not going to be your average film-ponce. I will regularly advocate watching some shiz because life needs its shiz as well as its Cannes/Oscar/generally academic worthy discussion blah blah blah. If you want further proof of how this blog is going to roll please read these few proclamations:

1. Sex-Bob-Omb is the best fictional band ever. Just for the name. Say it with me SEX-BOB-OMMMB!

2. Michael Cera’s run is the funniest thing in the world of film. Simple, yet brilliant.

3. Kristen Wiig stole her penis impression in Bridesmaids from ME. How rude.

4. John Hughes needs to come back from the dead to film my life. Seriously.

5. War films are BOSS. If you want further explanation of this then tune into the show. The War Redux show is coming soon.

6. The 80s was the best decade ever. Again, stay tuned for further information.

7. I love films that make you think ‘bleurgh’ after watching them and that’s all you can say about them because you’ve been totally mind-raped e.g. Inception, Donnie Darko.

8. Don’t diss Stevie Spielberg. You will get injured or seriously maimed.

So if all that hasn’t filled you with absolute dread, then keep an eye on the blog or the facebook page or the twitter or just ask me (I promise I don’t bite) for details about when the show will be back on the air. It will be crazy cool.

Over and out film lovers xox

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