18 Apr 2014

Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu anime review

English: Haruka Nogizaka's Secret
Type: TV
Episodes: 12
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jul 3, 2008 to Sep 25, 2008
Producers: Geneon Universal Entertainment, Diomedea, ASCII Media Works, Studio Mausu
Genres: Comedy, Romance
Duration: 25 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older

Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu (Haruka Nogizaka's Secret) is an Ecchi, Romantic, Comedy about a relationship formed from a secret shared between two high school students. This anime doesn’t offer anything remarkably different to your average Rom/Com; however it certainly has a refreshing feel to it.

Yuuto Ayase is a fairly normal guy and Haruka Nogizaka is the school idol but their separate lives soon intertwine when Yuuto discovers Haruka’s secret hobby (Anime). Hardcore anime fans may enjoy the concept because it’s easy to relate to the stigma that may comes along with being an ‘open anime fan’, even though it does go a bit overboard. Though what makes this anime worth watching is the sweet romance that develops. The story moves at a steady pace, dealing with one issue at a time however the problem with this is that the episodes feel very disjointed, as there’s no real flow between one episode and the next. Also once the major issue about Haruka is resolved, this ends up becoming yet another typical romance anime.

Like in most romance anime, this one centres on the characters in the main relationship. Well unlike most protagonists in these kinds of Rom/Coms, Yuuto is quite the appealing guy and acts how a guy is supposed to be and is a welcome change from all the spineless loser-kuns. Then there’s the main attraction, Haruka who is seemingly perfect and has a cute timid personality, however she also comes with her own problems. The supporting characters do an alright job providing some comedy, but can be a real nuisance when it comes to the story.

Just from looking at this series’ picture, anime fans can expect this anime to go for animation and music that we are used to. The art style is very typical for this type of anime, with very simple big-eyed character designs but the way it is animated is certainly better than some similar looking anime (Myself; Yourself, H20, etc.). On the other hand this series doesn’t perform too well in the sound department. The music is sub par and can easily go unnoticed during the non-dramatic scenes.

Overall Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu is one of the decent Rom/Com of its season, though I feel that there can be an unnecessary amount of fanservice. The comedy is okay, especially on the rare occasions that it includes some obvious anime references but it does get stale after a while. Nevertheless the endearing romance is the only real reason worth watching this anime. It’s a shame the romantic relationship lacks a sense of progression and is littered with trivial problems.


Rio 2 movie review

In RIO 2, rare blue macaw lovebirds Blu (voiced by Jesse Eisenberg) and Jewel (Anne Hathaway) are now married with three juvenile birds of their own, living in the bird sanctuary established by their married human friends Linda (Leslie Mann) and Tulio (Rodrigo Santoro). During a trip to the Amazon, Linda and Tulio discover that there are more blue macaws living in a remote cluster of Brazil nut trees deep in the rainforest. When news gets out about their discovery, Jewel decides that her overly domesticated family needs to go to the Amazon and find out about their roots -- and, as it turns out, her father, Eduardo (Andy Garcia), and old boyfriend, Roberto (Bruno Mars), are the leaders of the flock. Blu has a tough time acclimating to his new wild environment, but even more trouble is brewing: A greedy logging CEO and Blu's old nemesis, Nigel (Jemaine Clement), are both set to destroy the macaws and their habitat.

Director Carlos Saldanha continues his visual love letter to his home country of Brazil with a second adventure exploring the natural beauty of his native land. The plot of Rio 2 may not be as thorough or exciting as the original, but moving the adventure to the Amazon adds even more colors and animals to a franchise that differentiated itself with its detail to landscapes and location. And thanks to spectacular singers like Mars, Kristin Chenoweth (as Gabi the hilarious poisonous frog), and Janelle Monae joining will.i.am, Clement, and Hathaway, the music is once again fabulously memorable.

Rio's "fish out of water" plot line for Blu already felt played out by the time the original movie was over, so it's a bit of a drag to see him still struggling to fit in with his wild(er) mate Jewel's idea of home. And Fernando, the orphaned boy who played such a prominent role in the original, is only seen once in this installment. But even though it's not quite as singular as its predecessor, Rio 2 is still a fun and thoughtful sequel that will make families leave the theater happy and ready to samba, learn capoeira, and adopt a capybara.


Oculus movie review

This surprise packet of a horror chiller marks the arrival of promising newbie director Mike Flanagan. Expanded from his own half-hour short film, Oculus builds up a palpable sense of dread from the get-go. Tantalising the viewers’ imagination without resorting to shock tactics or gratuitous violence, Flanagan gets more scares from an antique mirror than most genre directors can scrape together with ghouls, gore and what have you.

Serving also as the film’s editor, the auteur adroitly melds events occurring in parallel time frames 11 years apart.  The set-up is simple but it would be futile to expect clear-cut explanations for the supernatural elements here.  

A decade after the mysterious death of their parents, 20-something siblings (Gillan-Thwaites) set out to investigate the malevolent forces unleashed by a century-old mirror in their family home. 

It seems that their parents (Katee Sackhoff-Rory Cochrane) had inexplicably gone berserk under the influence of the demonic mirror.  Now, the focus is on the psychological impact of the tragedy on the two parentless siblings who have to relive their childhood nightmare.
Low on special effects but high on horror and intrigue, here’s a rare small-scaled Hollywood film which delivers the goods and how.  Karen Gillan is outstanding as the sister determined to unravel the mystery. Brenton Thwaites is equally impressive as her beleaguered brother.   

The sparse background music score by The Newton Brothers is extremely effective. A compelling experiment in terror, Oculus is a must-experience.


Kim Hyun Joong's world tour and Secret dating.

"Inspiring Generation" actor Kim Hyun Joong will be kicking off his world tour this June in Korea!

Kim Hyun Joong recently concluded the KBS 2TV drama "Inspiring Generation" successfully, and he's planning to greet his fans with a new album and world tour. Kim Hyun Joong said, "I'll be starting my world tour on June 28th in Korea. Although the visiting countries have not yet all been confirmed, it looks like there will be quite a lot. Before my world tour I'll also be releasing a new album." This will be Kim Hyun Joong's first solo album since July last year.

He also said, "I want to present music that's worthy of the World Cup," and threw hints about his new music.
"For the upcoming World Cup, I need to celebrate with chicken & beer. And I want to prepare an exciting album that's worthy of the World Cup. Apart from chart ranks, I'm more concerned about creating music that will give you the feeling that Korea is going to win, with music that can gather many hearts in one place. I want to make music that the fans in the audience can enjoy rather than just broadcasts. But I'm not just aiming at the World Cup (laughter)."

Kim Hyun Joong's 2nd drama "Inspiring Generation" came to an end on the 3rd. He played the role of loyal Shin Jung Tae, through which he received high praise for his acting. He said, "I still cannot believe that the drama has ended. It was a work where I really immersed myself. It's not easy to let go of the character Shin Jung Tae. I've been feeling really down lately." He continued, "I really liked Shin Jung Tae, and was obsessed. Although it's unrealistic to protect the people you love with your life, but it was warm."

But now it's time to say goodbye to Shin Jung Tae. He should reduce the consumption of such feelings and focus on his own. That's why he's decided to attend a popular music concert all by himself.
"I wanted a diversion, so I went to Nell's concert by myself. However it was such an emotional concert and I returned feeling even more down. I often go alone to concerts. I'm kind of embarrassed that my realest emotions are being shared with others."

He'll also be leaving on a trip to Jeju Island on his time off. He's planning to go scuba diving, which is his hobby, as well as go bike riding. He will be joined by his agency's CEO and senior actor Bae Yong Joon.
"I was planning to leave for vacation alone, but Bae Yong Joon said he'll be coming with me. I want to take this opportunity to teach him how to scuba dive."

Meanwhile, Kim Hyun Joong is also seriously considering his next work. When asked how he would respond if he received an offer for a work of action as a sequel, he answered flatly, "I absolutely won't. My pride won't allow me to do what I've already shown you." He added, "While I'm young I want to show you many faces."

What about a romance like "Boys Over Flowers"? Again he rejected the idea, saying, "For one, I'm not going to be wearing the uniform. And I don't think I can do content like 'Boys Over Flowers' because I'll be too uncomfortable. I want to do something that can appear in a documentary, a possibly true story among ourselves, as an ordinary character," and raised expectations for his next work.

Kim Hyun Joong remained firm on his decision that he will never go public with a relationship.

In a recent interview with Newsen, Kim Hyun Joong was asked about marriage given that he is in his late twenties. He shared that marriage might not be in the cards for him, "I don't think I will be able to... I have to go to the military and if I do other things, I will be over 35 years old... In the past, I thought that I really have to [get married someday] but now I don't have confidence. I love work so much so I don't think I will be able to be faithful to my family. If a dilemma suddenly comes about in my drama, singing, and concerts one day, then I think I will do it."

He was also asked about his love life to which he honesty remarked, "If I say I don't date, that would be a lie... I dated in secret about a year ago, but I am not dating currently."

He also added, "I want to date a bit more comfortably now. I think a relationship based on impulsive passion and clinging on are not that great... A normal dating relationship is the best. Rather than buying flowers and doing surprise events, eating and holding hands while walking is better. I didn't realize that sometimes normal and ordinary things are the best when I was younger, but I am feeling it now."

"I will never go public with a relationship. I noticed that when people date publicly and breakup it's the woman that has to suffer for it. I don't think there is any need for a woman, who may be later married, to have the title of being 'someone's woman' following them... If I'm not going to marry that person, I will never go public with a relationship out of respect for that person's life."

Kim Hyun Joong previously denied dating rumors with After School's UEE and after reading his stance on never going public with a relationship, shippers are left wondering if this could mean that there was some truth to the rumors. However, it seems we will never know as Kim Hyun Joong seems like a man who will fight to protect those close to him and kudos to him for that!

Kim Hyun Joong’s 김현중 Interview - Kim Hyun Joong, A Man With Surprises, promotional images

Q: It's a tough journey. How do you feel about 'Inspiring Generation' for the past 3 months?

A: The 3 months was as if one year. (laughs) 'Inspiring Generation' started its production since June last year. I was (always)contemplating how should I bring out the character of 'Shin Jeong-tae' throughout the 10 months. Although there were tough times during the timing, it ended perfectly thanks to the love and supports from the viewers.


Q: There were quite a few characters that left a deep impression. How did you able to adapt to that?

A: Every scene was shot with 100% effort. The best was given for every moment/shots. If I couldn't receive a positive approval, I will accept the fact that I might not have done enough yet. 


Q: There were concerns on the comparison between you and the top actors, but your crying scenes in the early-mid part of the drama have wiped out the concerns.

A: I did cry a lot during the crying scenes, but it’s a little pity if the focus of acting skills was only zooming into those scenes. In fact, a lot of emotions that were as much as crying scenes, were put into angry scenes, funny scenes and even sad scenes. It was up to the point that I contemplated on how should I hold a spoon during acting. I’ve always tried my best to imagine the scenario whenever I received the script. When I looked at the father’s (Shin Yeong-chul) picture, I imagined how his life and actions would be. I’ve also tried to imagine the little habits that Chung-ah have when looking at her picture, and even tried the speech intonation I (as Shin Jeong-tae) when speaking to her. Perhaps I was always thinking about all these, I even dreamed about ‘Inspiring Generation’. When I was napping for around 2-3 hours, I dreamed about Shin I-chi and Wang Baek-san chasing after me. (laughs) Then I realised ‘I’ve really fallen for IG’.


Q: Have you ever thought you could erase the clear image you’ve got in the long run from KBS2 ‘Boys Over Flower’ through ‘Inspiring Generation’?

A: I’ve never thought of breaking the ‘flower boy’ image. The ‘image’ choice belongs to the viewers, isn’t it? However I think there is a limitation in which acting skills can reach in romantic comedy genre. It was one of the reason why I chose a more manly period drama so I make a turning point through my acting skills. As much as the preparation was done, in order to express the right emotions of the characters, I think it’s best to choose the right character (first that suits yourself). 


Q: There were positive feedbacks on your acting skills, including your action scenes. It wasn’t easy to try action scenes for the first time.

A: I attended action schools for a few days, but I haven’t practiced a lot. I learned martial acting and there’s a line that I can still remember very well, ‘Action is not about synchronicity, it’s emotions’. It feels a whole lot different when you were fighting against a stranger and someone you loved. The latter one consists of a more complex actions and emotions. ‘Inspiring Generation’ have changed a big part of my mindset on martial acting.


Q: Are you personally satisfied with the production this time? Have you gained any meaningful experiences?

A: The feedbacks were more than what I was expecting. But I think it could have been better. I will not stop here nor will I choose to act a character that is similar to ‘Shin Jeong-tae’. Instead, I will show something that is beyond what I have achieved now. Since there is no endpoint to martial arts, I will continue and show something different in the future. 

Q: From the change of scriptwriter and the production cost scandal, it was quite an interference to the broadcast of ‘Inspiring Generation’. Were you affected by it?

A: I had a hard time too but I did not have any dissatisfaction about it since I was one of the lead cast, I have to continue with the filming. I have to prepare to bring out the best for the scene even if I have no more than 5 minutes to memorise the script. So I wasn’t really affected by changing of the scriptwriter. A part of me had become one with ‘Shin Jeong-tae’, so almost everything I do was to bring the best of the character. Besides, there was a good collaboration between the casts. To be able to make a production up to this standard under such condition, the casts deserve large credits. Everyone were able to focus, no matter during filming or off filming.


Q: Although it was said after filming, ‘Although it was a 150million KRW mass production, the viewerships ratings were just so-so’. And ‘Inspiring Generation’ was highly anticipated by outsiders from the start. It’s another task for you to shake off this burden. 

A: I don’t know how I should say this, but I did not feel any burden. When it comes to ‘Kim Hyun-Joong’, it’s surely thrilling & nervous. However I was ‘Shin Jeong-tae’, not ‘Kim Hyun-Joong’ in ‘Inspiring Generation’. It was also a reason why tears fell naturally when Jeong Jae-hwa (Kim Seong-oh) and the Bangsamtong’s people kneeled before me. Rather than feeling stressed towards the expectations for the drama, I felt sorry for the people together with me whom I cannot protect. Whether it’s the cast or the factors beyond the production. 


Q: You have experience in acting from modern drama to period drama throughout your short acting journey. What do you think that matches you between the two?

A: To be honest, it was hard filming for a period drama. (laughs) Because we had to play a lot with the intonation and moves. It was hard to express your emotions in a limited area. On the other hand, if I were to point out a good point about period drama, it’s going to be ‘stepping into the past through acting’. If ‘time machine’ really does exist, wouldn’t it be ‘period drama’? The historical sentiments, culture and incidents that I wanted to feel so real. I’ve felt/learned a lot of things from ‘Inspiring Generation’. For example, ‘So 1930 era was such a depressing era’, ‘The only way to protect your family was only through fighting’, ‘Without handphones (text messages), there’s no misunderstanding’. (laughs)


Q: The steady fandom since your days as a singer idol seemed to have become more solid while you were engaged in both activities. Have you have any thoughts of expanding your acting career overseas?

A: I don’t know, honestly. Even with dubbings and subtitles, I think there ought to have problems if I’m filming just because of my popularity, using a language I do not know. No matter what, I do not want to do it just because of the money value. I’m the type whom I will not do anything that I am not confident in. Although I wanted to learn foreign language, but it’ll not be Japanese or Chinese. It’s likely to be English since it’s a more widely used language. I’m not a person who can absorb a variety of languages well. (laughs)


Q: Then what do you think about ‘actor Lee Byung-hun’? He’s one of the very few Korean stars who officially entered Hollywood.

A: Ah, I really respected him. If you watched his acting, it seemed as if he’s a native(English) speaking in mother tongue language. An acting skills whom he did research on the proper language pronunciation alongside with the sentiments it brings along. If I’m going to do this, I wanted to do it like that as well.


Q: You are a singer and actor to the public at the same time. Especially there are sayings that ‘There’s a lot of burden as an actor’. So how did you manage to balance between the two?

A: There are ups and downs for both singer and actor. Although I didn’t want to be outstanding on one career over another. (laughs) Rather than choosing what I should be doing, a lot more thoughts are need to be given when running the both activities at the same time. As I’m thinking about ‘Why can’t an idol-turned actor received appraisals for their acting skills?’, I came down with the conclusion that viewers weren’t expecting much about their acting skills, aside from the ‘misleading’ image they have (as an idol). No matter on which side, I think more time is needed to be given for viewers to forget about the image. So I think I’m going on a tour as a singer for a while. 


Q: You made your first turning point via ‘Inspiring Generation’. And you have also reached the ‘important age’ of an actor. Have you got any plans ahead?

A: I want to try a beautiful melodrama as an actor. For a romantic comedy, it’s ‘Wherever there’s wind, I’m able to go travel freely’ (Kim Hyun-joong used his famous line from Boys Over Flowers and said ‘Isn’t that line referring to a kite?’. But for this famous quote, I don’t think it’s still usable in the next century. (laughs) Just like the previous quote, there are many lines that do not quite make sense. Since melodramas are more related to our daily lives, I want to focus more on that. 


Q: What do you think as a man who reached 29 this year.There are many things you should think of now.

A: I’m planning to enlist next year. To be honest, I’ve postponed the date of enlistment so I’ll make it a memorable one. In other words, before I enlist, I’ve done everything I wish I could do. With no regrets, with no worries. (laughs) Maybe I’m afraid I will forget about it (things he wish to do), so instead of worrying about it, I bring along the the memories of myself (accomplishing the things he wished to do) into the army. After I come back, I’m going to show a more steady acting skills, more band-liked music of different style as compared to now, in order to repay fans. Also displaying a more diverse personality as a public figure, as well as keeping the profile as low as possible. *laughs* (P/S: meaning less public criticism and less scandals).

Taylor Swift Surprises Ohio Fan at Her Bridal Shower

Taylor Swift spent Saturday evening in New York City. With her friend and former tourmate Ed Sheeran performing on "Saturday Night Live," Swift was not only in attendance but also made a cameo during host Seth Rogan's opening monologue.

But if you pegged the 24-year-old to stick around Sunday for a trendy brunch in the West Village, think again. Instead the songstress hopped aboard a plane, flew to Columbus, Ohio, and surprised a fan during her bridal shower.

"There's this girl named Gena who's been coming to my shows for years, and she's been really, really dedicated and very loyal," Swift explained in a video diary she posted about the trip on her YouTube channel. "I was at the management office the other day, and we were going through fan mail and invitations and stuff. And I got this wedding invitation, and I noticed I couldn't make it to the wedding. But in the wedding invitation, there was a bridal shower invitation. And I've never been to a bridal shower. So we're going to fly to Ohio today."

Miley Cyrus tweets official statement on her health after concert cancellations

The pop star was forced to cancel two shows this week due to a severe allergic reaction and has been tweeting from her hospital bed during her stay to keep fans updated on her status. Fed up with stories misrepresenting her condition, Cyrus tweeted a full official statement — typed in iPhone Notes — Thursday afternoon detailing what antibiotic caused her allergic reaction and requesting privacy.
“Miley is devastated about missing shows and possibly disappointing her fans,” the note reads. Judging from Cyrus’ Twitter feed, she truly is upset about canceling shows — “can’t quit crying,” she tweeted Thursday morning, “I wanna go back on tour.” We want you to too, Miley.

Selena Gomez Signs With WME, Brillstein

Selena Gomez has found a new representation team. After she relieved her mother and stepfather of their managerial duties in early March, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed that the actress and singer, who previously was with CAA, has signed with WME as well as Brillstein for management.

The rep changes are a crucial piece of the Disney alum's strategy, long in the works, to move on into more adult-oriented fare in film and music. After getting her start on the Disney Channel's Wizards of Waverly Place, Gomez recently starred in Harmony Korine's girls-gone-wild crime drama Spring Breakers, and as a mysterious street urchin in the action thriller Getaway, opposite Ethan Hawke.

Gomez, 21, recently completed shooting on the comedy Behaving Badly opposite Nat Wolff and Mary-Louise Parker and appeared opposite Billy Crudup in the musical dramedy Rudderless, William H. Macy's directorial debut. Her other screen credits include Hotel Transylvania and Monte Carlo.

Gomez's first solo album, Stars Dance, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 last summer on the strength of triple-platinum lead single "Come & Get It." She previously released three albums as part of her band, Selena Gomez & The Scene, all on Disney's Hollywood Records.

Emma Watson celebrates her 24th on muddy Canadian set of new movie Regression

She must be truly dedicated to her job.
Emma Watson spent her 24th birthday on Tuesday on the muddy set of her newest movie Regression.
It was the pretty British star's first day filming the new flick - in which she stars alongside Ethan Hawke - and she was sure to tell her fans via Twitter that it was a 'very cool birthday present.'
Canada clearly had a dose of rain the night before, as Emma was spotted dodging puddles around the film set.
There wasn't much time for the birthday girl to slip into party attire either, with her costume consisting of an array of greys and dirty greens.
The actress wore what looked much like a waitress's uniform, with a faded green pinafore over a green shirt, teamed with ripped grey tights and scuffed leather boots.

She kept warm between takes with a black trench coat, but otherwise looked to have had to put up with the elements in order to play her character in the upcoming thriller.
Emma's brunette tresses were pulled into a casual ponytail and held back with a pink pin - a stark contrast to the look she sported on the multitude of red carpets over the last few weeks on her European promotional jaunt.

Daniel Radcliffe lure Teens to Broadway

During the curtain call of a recent preview performance of "The Cripple of Inishmaan" on Broadway, star Daniel Radcliffe looked up and beamed his world-famous "Harry Potter" smile into the second balcony between each bow.

Was his mother up there? A girlfriend? Nope—the balcony was filled with young teenage fans who got to see the show for a mere $27 a ticket. Each time Mr. Radcliffe looked up, the whole balcony cheered, adding a burst of youthful excitement to a normally staid Broadway evening.

Director Michael Grandage, whose production company is one of the show's producers, has insisted that 10,000 tickets be offered at $27 throughout the 14-week limited run. The strategy is aimed at attracting a crowd that would normally be priced out of the show. The rest of the tickets to "Inishmaan" are going for between $62 and $142 apiece at the box office. There is no guarantee that the discounted seats—which are available on a first-come basis at the box office and online—will go to young people. But producers say younger buyers seem to snapping up the tickets for most performances.

Mr. Grandage says having those screaming teenagers in the balcony "changes the energy in the house" and gives the performers a thrill. Although more money could be made selling the tickets to the traditional middle-aged theatergoer, it's just not as much fun, he says.

What's more, the strategy is about more than fun, Mr. Grandage says. To save what he sees as an art form in peril, the director says it's imperative to get young people into theaters. "We will eventually be dead, and if there is no one to replace us, there won't be any theater," says the former head of London's Donmar Warehouse. The best marketing tool for theater is the show itself, he says, but it's so expensive that young people can never go.

Michael Grandage, the director of the new production of "The Cripple of Inishmaan" starring Daniel Radcliffe, has had success in London with a program that lures young people to theaters with cheap tickets. Will he try it on Broadway? WSJ's Stefanie Cohen discusses. Photo: "The Cripple of Inishmaan."
His own interest in theater began that way—he grew up in the remote area of Cornwall and got to see "Jason and the Argonauts" when the production "pitched a tent on the local green," he says. Later he got to see Ian McKellen in "Twelfth Night" when the Royal Shakespeare Company sent out a small-scale tour of the show to Mr. Grandage's local sports center.

"I wouldn't be here if those two things hadn't happened," he says.

After leaving the Donmar in 2012, Mr. Grandage formed his own production company with his former Donmar producer James Bierman. Together, they developed a model that allowed for lower-priced tickets. They produced five shows on London's West End over 15 months that offered 102,000 seats—25% of the available tickets—for 10 pounds ($17) each. Because they asked investors to put up money for all five shows across the entire season instead of a single show, they were able to create a "spread bet for our investors which offset some of the individual risk if any one of the shows failed to perform at the box office," says Mr. Bierman.

The model brought in profits, they say, (although they wouldn't disclose a figure,) and was also successful at bringing new faces to the theater. Out of 392,000 tickets sold to the five plays, 120,000 were to first-time theatergoers, according to Mr. Bierman, who says ticket bookers tracked how many sales went to first-time buyers.

The flip side of their mission, they admit, is that if they attract young people to the theater and they hate what they see, the theater has lost them for life. For that reason, the two have targeted top talent for their shows. In the last year, Jude Law starred in "Henry V" and Judi Dench headlined "Peter and Alice," about the meeting between Alice Liddell Hargreaves of "Alice in Wonderland" and Peter Llewelyn Davies of "Peter Pan." Mr. Radcliffe, who has starred in "Equus," and "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying" on Broadway, signed up for "Inishmaan," which is transferring to New York from a successful run on the West End.

The play, by Martin McDonagh, is a tragicomedy that follows the effects on a small Irish town in the 1930s when a film crew arrives to make a movie about their lives. The town turns upside-down when "Cripple Billy," Mr. Radcliffe's character, decides to try out for the movie.

"We have been able to recoup for our investors in the U.K.," says Mr. Grandage. "Were making less than we could, but we are still making money."

3 Apr 2014

Kamisama Hajimemashita Anime review

English: Kamisama Kiss
Synonyms: Kami-sama Hajimemashita, Kami-sama Kiss
Type: TV
Episodes: 13
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Oct 2, 2012 to Dec 25, 2012
Producers: TV Tokyo, Dentsu, TMS Entertainment, FUNimation EntertainmentL, Pony Canyon
Genres: Comedy, Demons, Fantasy, Romance, Shoujo, Supernatural
Duration: 24 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older

In a nutshell, I would say that Kamisama Hajimemashita is a romance with a drop of supernatural element. 
The plot has it all: beautiful animation, interesting story, spiritual world, current world and school life as well as different handsome male characters. Everything is perfectly combined and thus great romance and comedy has been created. If you are looking for a heartwarming romance, don’t forget to give a shot to Kamisama Kiss.

The series tells the story of a young girl named Nanami Momozono, who is alone..abandoned, and helpless. The innocent little lamp makes an interesting encounter with a strange man (Mikagi) and from there, her life changes forever. But wait, it doesn't stop there. She also encounters the big bad wolf (or rather familiar) Tomoe. Along with him comes the package of two other spirits (Onikiri and Kotetsu). After a contract sealed by a kiss, the two forms as peculiar relationship. This series details their relationship and what's to come from it because the world is never fair. It's not perfect.

The relationship between Nanami and Tomoe is one of the most strange, amusing, and interesting part of the series. A human and a familiar relationship has trouble written all over it especially the gap of difference between the two. Nanami is a normal human girl who has normal skills in life with normal friends attending a normal school. On the other hand, Tomoe is a supernatural being with supernatural abilities and able to accomplish feats with supernatural degrees. 

The animation is really amazing! Color palette made my heart tremble. It’s so charming…
And also I am Positively surprised by the pleasant opening and ending music, I must admit the anime has really charmed me. Right from the start you get drawn into it and sing along :) a… a a a… kamisama…


Ending Song (Love it):

Amnesia Anime review

English: Amnesia
Japanese: AMNESIA
Type: TV
Episodes: 12
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jan 7, 2013 to Mar 25, 2013
Producers: Brains Base, Sentai FilmworksL
Genres: Mystery, Fantasy, Romance, Shoujo
Duration: 23 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older

Are you a lonely, boy-less teenage girl? Do you wish you could have many hot guys surrounded by you, astounded by you ? What about living in a world where you get to date and be submissive to no, not just one attractive male, but over FOUR of them in many different worlds? Does that sound like the dream life to you? Have no fear, "Amnesia" is just what you need to fulfill this!

In case you don't get the vibe, this is pretty much a reverse harem used primarily for female wish-fulfillment. The story centers around our lead girl, erm, I guess we just call her Heroine? Because her boyfriends that love her oh so dearly never bother to call her by her name? Yeah. Heroine finds herself awakening with no memories, and it's up to her and a spirit called Orion to collect her memories. She's also trapped in this sort of "time loop." Basically, each time she dies, the date resets. By date I mean both the month and day and her current boyfriend.

The story has two main issues: the pacing and the Heroine. The pacing moves by pretttty damn slowly, to the point where even when we hit episode nine, nearly nothing is known about the main plot.
And here comes our other issue, the Heroine herself. This girl is so bland, so personality-less, and used as such a wish-fulfillment device that she doesn't even have a name. she provides little to no advancement to the plot herself and has to rely on everyone else to push her in any direction possible. 

Speaking of Heroine's reliance, this also brings another issue: she's submissive. Too, too submissive. Almost all the guys do extremely improper things to her, like shoving her against a tree in the middle of the dark against her will or forcefully kissing her, getting too close to her, anything. And she just accepts all of this. She never sticks up for herself, and is even willing to stay with a man whom she pretty much knows will dump her when his time limit is up. Great example, right guys? The male characters ain't any better. Some want to play her, others want to lock her up in a cage. You know how it is.

Oh uh, the positives? Well, the art is pretty crisp, as expected of Brain's Base. The eyes look downright gorgeous and the opening theme is pretty much eyecandy. The men are attractive, which is a key for these anime, and the backgrounds are well-created. 

Soundtrack is merely mediocre and unmemorable, though bonus points are awarded for such an awesome opening song. And over all watch it if you really like pretty boys in different worlds wanting the same girl. Then its your thing.

Opening titles:

Ian Somerhalder and Nina Dobrev Back Together?

Ian Somerhalder and Nina Dobrev may or may not be together in real life, but fans are still hoping for a kissing rain scene starring "TVD" characters Elena and Damon.

During PaleyFest 2014, 35-year-old Somerhalder and his rumored 25-year-old girlfriend addressed the fact that fans want to see Damon and Elena kiss while in the rain again.

"First of all, it's really cold in Georgia, so I don't think that's such a good idea," Somerhalder said at the PaleyFest panel for the CW series, according to Entertainment Wise. "It was below 30 degrees, and it got so cold the muscles in my jaw froze and I couldn't speak. I looked like I had Bell's palsy."

Dobrev agreed, adding, "I got icicles in my hair and I got really sick."

And it looks like no one is safe if the kissing rain scene happens.

"You write another rain kiss and I quit," Somerhalder said, threating the show's co-executive producer Julie Plec.

Damon and Elena are seemingly back together in season 5 of the popular CW vampire TV show, at least in a romantic hooking up type of way.

"Friends with benefits never ultimately work," Somerhalder recently told Zap2it. "They are wonderful for a spell. But hey, you never know."

Dobrev agreed.

"Well, we've all seen the movie 'Friends With Benefits' with Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake, right?" Dobrev tells Zap2it. "Everyone always goes into that whole arrangement with optimistic views and wanting it to work but it always gets messy. It's hard to just separate sex and emotions. Those just go together."

During PaleyFest, both agreed that their onscreen romance was "toxic," with Somerhalder saying, "When you have grown-up conversations, you have to put your big boy pants and big girl pants on and have the conversation. But they keep taking their pants off, and that's what gets in the way of the grown up conversations."

Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart Reunion: Twilight Star Rushes to LA for K-Stew's Birthday

Looks like Robert Pattinson is adamant about being with Kristen Stewart on her 24th birthday.

The Twilight star is back in Los Angeles after a long stint of filming overseas – and just in time for former girlfriend Kristen Stewart's birthday, which is on April 9.

"He wanted to make sure he was in LA for Kristen's birthday," a source revealed to Hollywood Life. The on-again, off-again couple is planning a special, long-awaited reunion, according to an insider.

Pattinson has been busy with his films, Queen of the Desert and Life, filming back-to-back in different parts of the world.

On March 30, Pattinson was spotted filming scenes for his upcoming film Life at West Hollywood's swanky Chateau Marmont.

"Rob is back in town and he's super psyched to spend some quality time with Kristen," a friend of Pattinson told Hollywood Life. "He just arrived to film some scenes for the movie Life, which he was working on in Toronto."

Wonder if the shooting schedule was simply a coincidence or if the actor really wanted to make sure he was in town for Stewart's special day.

"They haven't actually seen each other yet, but plan on reuniting in the next day or so with all of the dogs in tow. It's been like four months since they've seen each other. He wanted to make sure he was in LA for Kristen's birthday," the friend said.

Selena Gomez trespasser gets jail time

Prosecutors say a man charged with trespassing at Selena Gomez's home has been sentenced to 45 days in jail and ordered to stay away from the singer-actress.

Los Angeles district attorney's spokesman Ricardo Santiago says Che Cruz admitted trespassing at an initial court appearance Wednesday and was immediately sentenced.

Cruz was arrested Sunday in Gomez's guesthouse and was charged Wednesday with one count of misdemeanor trespassing.

Santiago says Cruz was sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to stay away from Gomez and her home in Calabasas, Calif.

Authorities say Gomez arrived home Sunday night and called security after hearing noises on the property.

Justin Bieber's Believe album hijacked

Justin Bieber has become the victim of an elaborate April Fool's Day prank.
You wouldn't call it the final indignity for Justin Bieber – no doubt there's further to fall for a man already earning frequent offender points at his local cop shop. However, being the victim of an elaborate April Fools' Day prank may be seen as rubbing high end rock salt into a well-groomed wound.
Across Los Angeles on Tuesday, what appeared be copies of Bieber's Believe album on the shelves of major retailers such as Wal-Mart, Best Buy and Target turned out to be music from electronic artist Paz.
While the cover was identical to Believe CDs, which were plastic-wrapped and a barcode visible on the packaging, the actual disc instead featured music from Paz's album, From the Bottom Of My Heart To The Top of Your Lungs. Although the title of the DJ's record may be seen as a reference to Bieber's seeming predilection for inhalable substances, musically it's heavy on the synthesisers and light on the teen-friendly pop for which the Canadian star is best known.
For those playing close attention, a giveaway before the music was played would have been the inside sleeve of the CD which not only had the regular Paz artwork but also what's described as "images of cats, pizzas and a dog stuffed inside a taco”. Not even an artist with the biggest case of the munchies would go so far as a dog stuffed taco. Probably.
Paz, whose full name is Paz Dylan, said the hoax was not lightly done and had a message well beyond any passing mockery of a fallen pop idol.
"We paid a lot of attention to detail because we wanted these to stay up on shelves as long as possible," he told the Associated Press. "The general idea is that retail stores make it almost impossible for independent musicians to get their music in there. I've always believed that retail stores can be the best outlets and ambassadors for independent music. They just choose not to be and sell the same recycled [expletive]. We thought if they're going to lock their doors to independent musicians, we're just going to knock them down and get our music in there."
Although some media were able to obtain copies of the hoax album, it's not known how many, if any, were purchased by unsuspecting Beliebers. Nor is it known how many found the music an improvement.

Kim Hyun Joong's 김현중 Inspiring Generation photos, OST

Kim Hyun Joong 김현중 - 오늘이 지나면 (When Today Passes) [Inspiring Generation OST]