Thursday Movie Picks: Horror Comedy (Halloween Edition)

It’s Thursday, which means it’s time for the Thursday Movie Picks feature. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.

The entirety of October is dedicated to a special Halloween Edition, meaning we’ll take a look at themes through the lens of Spooktober! This week is all about Horror Comedies, which is something I can get behind more than just plain scary stuff. To be fair, I’m not sure all the movies really fit the category, but imdb put them under horror and comedy, so I thought that would be alright.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show

I remember getting the DVD because it was on sale and then watching that movie for the first time alone at home, and I might have been glad no one was there. At that point, I had no idea how iconic it was, but it was fun and it stuck with me.

Ready or Not

I’ve seen this one so many times now? I really didn’t expect to like it as much as I did and while I think the ending is in no way good for Grace, she was amazing and so was the movie. I still wish Daniel didn’t have to die though.

The Babysitter

I thought I’d mind this one way more. It’s super silly, but I actually laughed quite a bit during this one. I do tune out a lot of the violence though, it turns out. I even watched the sequel! Not that it was all that great, but I did watch them both.

Warm Bodies

In general, I wouldn’t consider myself a zombie fan, but I liked this one. It’s not so much a comedy as it is a romance, but still. There’s a certain kind of sweetness to it and I enjoyed that.

Death Becomes Her

Look at me bringing in some classics this week! This movie was made before I was even born, but I’m pretty sure I have watched it as a kid … like I remember the whole in the body and the turned around head? How young was I when I first watched it!? I’m now questioning some stuff …


What did you think of my picks? What are some horror comedies you like? Let’s chat!

Thursday Movie Picks: Folk or Urban Legend (Halloween Edition)

It’s Thursday, which means it’s time for the Thursday Movie Picks feature. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.

The entirety of October is dedicated to a special Halloween Edition, meaning we’ll take a look at themes through the lens of Spooktober! Today’s topic is all about Folk and Urban Legends. Me being me, I have always had a knack for Folk Legends more than the Urban ones, I suppose. To me folk legends just means fairy tales, because that’s where fairy tales originated from. I do realize that folk tales are usually without an accredited author and passed on orally, but hey, I don’t do spooky well, so that’s the drift you’ll be getting from this post. Hope you enjoy!

Red Riding Hood

This is what you get when you try to make a fairy tale for teens during the heydays of Twilight. It’s full of angst and love triangles, but teen me ate it up. I know it’s a silly movie, but the werewolf premise did intrigue me and I would have been lying if I had said, I didn’t want a sequel to it. I might have also been slightly in love with Max Irons … maybe … possibly.

Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters

I watched this movie in 3D in cinemas and I had a blast. I know it’s silly and all, but sometimes that’s just what you need? Also, this is one of the few roles I like seeing Jeremy Renner in. Gemma Arterton is just always amazing, so there’s no debating here.

Snow White & the Huntsman

I thought this movie was beautifully shot. It’s not actually all that spooky, but oh well, I still picked it. I listened to that soundtrack up and down and even bought the book, cause the movie never even mentioned the Huntsman’s name. Rude.

Pan’s Labyrinth

This is probably the only movie that actually fits the prompt, but what can you do? I told you all that I would be struggling to come up with picks for this month, but I still tried. This is not the first time I’ve used Pan’s Labyrinth for my TMP posts, so I won’t go into detail. I just like it a lot.


What are some of your favorite movies about folk and urban legends? I’m assuming we will see a lot of Candyman suggestions this week, but I’m way too much of a wuzz to watch that.

Ranking all the “What If…?” Episodes!

I said Wednesdays are Marvel days, but I doubt I can keep this up until the release of Eternals/Hawkeye in November. Still, I did say I was going to do a ranking of all the “What If…?” episodes, so, here we are! You can get my full review/recap of each episode, by clicking on the titles. This ranking is completely subjective, but I hope you still enjoy it!

9 – … Killmonger Rescued Tony Stark?

I always liked Killmonger as a character. He has purpose, an interesting history, is just generally charismatic, but … this episode didn’t add anything new for me? His path was still very similar to the one in “our” reality, just a tinge more ruthless. Also, it probably didn’t help a lot that I was quite tired of seeing Tony Stark perish at that point in the series …

8 – … The World Lost Its Mightiest Heroes?

I’m going to raise a similar point as the one above, but I just really don’t need to see the Avengers die in various ways over and over. I don’t find it particularly interesting nor creative and I even guessed the big reveal. I can’t say I found much that stayed with me after this one.

7 – … Thor Were An Only Child?

The purpose of this episode was to be fun and it did that. We got Darcy marrying Howard the Duck, Jane and Thor getting matching magic/science tattoos, the Ice Bros … all entertaining for sure. The story felt silly and had some logical faults (especially when it came to traveling via the Bifrost), but it wasn’t terrible.

6 – … Captain Carter Were the First Avenger?

When I watched the episode, I wasn’t very impressed. In a lot of ways, it was a shot for shot recreation of Captain America: The First Avenger, but with Peggy getting the serum. While that was a nice callback visually, there were few surprises, since we all know the story. However, the longer I watched the series, the more I liked it. It was a really good introduction to what the show would be like and included unexpected moments, like Steve wearing the first Iron Man suit or Bucky and Howard being besties.

5 – … Ultron Won?

What If ... Ultron Won?
credit: Marvel Studios

I was always a huge Age of Ultron fan, so this was an interesting take. I liked the recreation of Nat sacrificing herself for the Soul Stone, but with the role reversal of Clint being the one to let go. Most of all, though, I liked that the Watcher was really involved in the episode and started an epic fight through the multiverse with an unhinged Ultron. It was a really good action sequence.

4 – … The Watcher Broke His Oath?

As far as season finales go, this wasn’t bad. It felt cohesive, put most of the puzzle pieces together and made the season a whole instead of an anthology. There could have been more interaction with the Watcher, but the team constellation was fun. If I had to criticize something, it’s the wasted chance of bringing Black Widow back into the live-action MCU, which would have been an easy choice. And, secondly, I think it’s a shame that they robbed Shuri and Pepper of the chance to dethrone Killmonger in their world.

3 – … Zombies!?

It’s Zombies – need I say more? I’m not even that huge of a zombie fan, but I think they worked that particular sub-genre well into the world of Marvel. It was one of the more gruesome episodes, but I enjoyed myself, except for the last scene. It kind of ruined the vibe.

2 – … Doctor Strange Lost His Heart Instead of His Hands?

Even though I never watch all episodes of Black Mirror, I like the concept and quite a handful of stories from it. This episode felt like it was made with Black Mirror in mind and I loved that. It was twisted, had a dark ending, but also taught you a lesson of sorts. It was *so* close to being my favorite, and I’m not just saying that because I have a soft spot for Doctor Strange, the egomaniac.

1 – … T’Challa Became a Star-Lord?

This episode just made me happy! It works well on its own, without leaving you bumbed or too questioning about what comes next. It gave me an entirely unexpected pairing, which has now become one of my favorite ships – Nebula and Cha Cha – like, I’m seriously so grateful they were introduced to us. But most of all, it was a beautiful tribute to Chadwick Boseman, who I’m sure, many of us consider to have been just as much of a bright light and force of good as T’Challa was in this universe.


What would your ranking of the “What If…?” episodes look like? What did you think of mine? Let’s talk!

Thursday Movie Picks: School (Halloween Edition)

It’s Thursday, which means it’s time for the Thursday Movie Picks feature. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.

The entirety of October is dedicated to a special Halloween Edition, meaning we’ll take a look at themes through the lens of Spooktober! Today, though, is all about School! I’m not the best at scary movie stuff, which is intrinsically linked to Halloween for me, but I’ll try my very best! I’m not even sure if slightly scary movies will be enough, or if it should actually be set during Halloween. We shall see what I can come up with …

The Covenant

People say this movie is really bad. I know a couple of actors, who don’t exactly love to talk about it, but I was obsessed with it back in the day. Maybe, I just liked looking at those boys, but it was mildly scary and the most I could do without being terrified. I hope you’ll grant me this pick.

Carrie

I know people didn’t love this version of Carrie, but I didn’t hate it? I loved the marketing for it though, that was AMAZING. If you haven’t seen it, I’ll post the video below as well.

Halloweentown High

Halloweentown movies were my jam as a kid. There’s technically also one set in college, but we don’t talk about that one, because they replaced the main actress? I’ll never truly understand.

Freaky

I haven’t seen this one YET. I really, really want to though, because it seems like such a fun take on the Freaky Friday concept and the cast is super fun as well.


I would have picked Jennifer’s Body, but I just used the movie last week. I have a feeling that this month won’t be easy for me … what did you think of my picks? Let’s chat!

Thursday Movie Picks: Femme Fatales

It’s Thursday and I’m back with a new Thursday Movie Picks feature post. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.

As you know, each week has a different theme and this time around we are talking Femme Fatales. I have to admit that I really struggled to come up with movies at first, but I’m very determined to make that theme my own. By definition, a femme fatale is often a mysterious, beautiful and seductive woman, who’s charms ensnare people, leading them into compromising or deadly situations. Let’s get started!

Promising Young Woman

This is still one of my most favorite movies of the year and I won’t pass up an opportunity to mention it. Cassandra dressed herself in various ways to appeal to men, giving them the chance to act decently or horribly instead. What she did to them after they showed their true face is entirely their fault.

Jennifer’s Body

Jennifer, too, used her body to get guys’ attention and then … well, should I spoil the movie? I feel like it’s a classic and you all should know what happens next.

Atomic Blonde

I loved Charlize Theron in this role and falling for her will 100% put you in danger, something she sometimes does on purpose. Also, such a good soundtrack! Suppose I’ve just always liked the 80s and German music.

Practical Magic

This is probably not a movie you’d think about right away with the theme “femme fatale”, but both sisters have quite a fatal touch. I mean … think about it! Still one of my favorite witch/magic movies though. I’ve seen it so many times and still adore it.

Nightmare Alley

This movie isn’t released yet, but because I enjoyed sharing movies in the Outlaws post that I’m looking forward to, I wanted to include this one as well. It does look fantastic.


What are some movies featuring a femme fatale that you enjoyed? Let’s talk!

Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé (Book Review)

Ace of Spades

Publisher: Usborne
Page Count
: 480

CW: racism, homophobia, bullying, hate crimes, forced outing, emotional abuse, mention of suicidal attempt, anxiety and panic attacks, torture, blackmailing, violence, stalking, gaslighting and murder

This review is brought to you by the sheer generosity of my good friend Marie @Drizzle and Hurricane Books. She hosted a giveaway and I was the lucky winner, getting to choose from books she had previously talked about on her blog. I picked Ace of Spades (you can read Marie’s review here) and have not regretted that choice one bit!

This book was FANTASTIC! It genuinely deserves all the hype and I’m currently trying to wrap my head around how I could possibly put my thoughts into coherent words. The premise is pretty straight forward: the only two black kids at Niveus Private Academy suddenly get targeted by an anonymous presence called “Ace” in their final year at the school. While people don’t grasp the connection at first, a thrilling tale unfolds that will keep you at the edge of your seat the entire time.

I loved the hints that were placed throughout, but how I was still shocked and surprised at every single revelation. Maybe, sometimes, it wasn’t so much because I didn’t think it was possible, but just because I didn’t want to see the knives in those kids’ backs get twisted in any further. I was rooting for them so much as they showed strength and vulnerability, where I am sure I would have crumbled to pieces already. I would have loved to burn down that entire school for what was happening to them.
While it’s easy to love Devon from the get go, it’s Chiamaka who grows on you over time, as you learn more about her. Both were so different, yet such compelling personalities in their own rights. They created the perfect balance for each other. But so did the book as a whole, in general. The writing kept me on my toes, made me turn page after page and managed to be engaging, chilling and disturbing all at once.

As much as it was a magnificent thriller, it was also an exceptional commentary on elitism, racism and the intersectionality of being queer and Black/a person of color.

My recommendation is to go into this book with as little knowledge as possible and to get yourself swept up in the mystery and emotions. I was riled up and sad and shocked. My range of emotions was really exploited to its full extent and that means I can’t put it any other way than calling this book a masterpiece. That end is going to keep a wicked smile on my face for a while, I believe.

Lastly, yes, this book really did combine Gossip Girl and Get Out in the best way possible, while completely staying its own story. Please, convince yourself of its magnificence!

Fazit: 5/5 stars! A fantastic and thrilling read. HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT!


Have you read Ace of Spades? Do you plan to? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

TMP – Oscar Winner Edition: Best Original Score and Best Original Song

It’s Thursday and I’m back with a new Thursday Movie Picks feature post. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.

This week is once again part of the Oscar Winner Edition, which will continue to be a reoccurring theme during each month. As was evident from the post title, we are dealing with Best Original Song and Best Original Score this time around – another two for one post! Music is such an important component to filmmaking, as is sound design in general. I’m looking forward to diving into some good music today!

Best Original Score

Soul

(Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross & Jon Batiste)

Soul was a beautiful movie that lived off of music, so it only makes sense to mention it here. Jazz in general might not be for everyone, but I’m sure it can enchant you here. (Also, it’s not like it’s all “just” jazz.)

Black Panther

(Ludwig Göransson)

I’ve mentioned Black Panther a lot for these posts, but 1) I’m happy when superhero movies get recognition from the Academy and 2) the movie was fantastic/iconic/a whole movement. If I hear a certain rhythm of tribal drums, I immediately think of Wakanda and/or the Dora Milaje. The score did THAT!

Finding Neverland

(Jan A. P. Kaczmarek)

I was obsessed with this movie when I was like 11 years old. I’m sure I watched it 20+ times and I cried every single one of them. To me, that movie was pure magic and my Peter Pan loving heart was all in.

Best Original Song

Man or Muppet (The Muppets)

(music and lyrics by Bret McKenzie)

Is this song ridiculous? Absolutely! Did it still get stuck in my head? Yes, it sure did!

Remember Me (Coco)

(music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez & Robert Lopez)

My favorite song from Coco is actually “Un Poco Loco”, but this one made me tear up in the end. So, it deserves to be on this list.

Falling Slowly (Once)

(music and lyrics by Glen Hansard & Markéta Irglová)

I just love the song! All the more for getting covered on a show I love (Good Trouble), but that’s another story.

You’ll Be In My Heart (Tarzan)

(music and lyrics by Phil Collins)

I love the whole soundtrack. Phil Collins doing all the songs in dozens of languages, despite not speaking them, was just the cherry on top. I will admit to having grown up with mostly the German versions of the Tarzan songs, but it is (next to the Anastasia soundtrack) one of the most played CDs of my childhood.

Honorable Mentions

I couldn’t go without a little shout out to some more songs that I loved and that were nominated, however, didn’t win.

  • Mystery of Love by Sufjan Stevens (Call Me by Your Name)
  • Lost Stars from the movie Begin Again (performed by Keira Knightley and Adam Levine in different versions)
  • Coming Home from the movie Country Strong (which has a fantastic soundtrack in general)
  • A LOT of Disney songs …
  • Tron: Legacy was snubbed for Best Score, because it was never even nominated. You can fight me on that, but I’ll stick to that opinion.

Which songs and scores would have made it onto your list? What did you think of my selection? Let’s talk about that!

Thursday Movie Picks: Treasure Hunt

It’s Thursday and I’m back with a new Thursday Movie Picks feature post. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.

Today’s theme is Treasure Hunt! I like a good treasure hunt, so I’m really excited about this post. There’s just something about that bit of adventure in the air, the excitement of maybe finding something that has been missing for a long time – I love it! Let’s jump right in!

The Goonies

The Goonies is a classic and was the first movie I thought of when I heard the theme! I loved it as a kid, I still kind of love it now. Despite its flaws, it will forever be entertaining to me.

Finding Ohana

Speaking of the Goonies, this is the Hawaiian new version of it. Kind of. I really enjoyed watching it and still have the song from the cave stuck in my head. Fingers crossed that one day, they’ll release it performed by the actors. The movie as a whole definitely had a lot of heart!

National Treasure

There’s just something so funny about Nicholas Cage stealing the Declaration of Independence and sprinkling some good old lemon juice on it to reveal a secret message.

Treasure Planet

One of my favorite Disney movies growing up! I think there’s many great ones out there, but I feel like quite a few slept on this one.

Lara Croft: Tomb Raider

I was honestly obsessed with Lara Croft as a kid/teenager. She was the epitome of everything I wanted to be – whip smart, super athletic (never bound to achieve that, I’m afraid) and always on some sort of adventure. When they announced the reboot with Alicia Vikander, I wasn’t against it, but it just didn’t hit the same for me.


What are some of your favorite treasure hunt movies? Let’s talk!

Thursday Movie Picks: Movies That Confused Me

It’s Thursday and I’m back with a new Thursday Movie Picks feature post. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.

Today’s theme was suggested by Brittani and is movies that confused you! Weirdly, I can’t think of a bunch of films right from the top of my mind, but I’m quite certain there had to be several. Some movies are just baffling and we will take a look at some of them now!

Doors

Doors is a horror anthology movie, about doors from outer space. What do they do? Make people crazy or disappear. What else? I don’t really know, because I never understood the purpose of the doors. Maybe possess people? It’s an option.

Arrival

I love this movie with my whole freaking heart! I think it is beautiful and touching and memorable like few alien movies I watched. However, the timey wimey bit was a tad confusing. Maybe time is happening all at once? I don’t know, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Annihilation

Confession time: I still haven’t watched Annihilation … BUT I have read the book. I actually held off from watching the movie, because I wanted to continue with the book series, but then something always got in the way. It was a baffling read for sure though, so I imagine the movie to leave you with quite the questions as well though.

O Beautiful Night

In the end, I just had to rep some German language cinema as well. I remember really enjoying this movie, but I never fully got it. It’s a really strange film about death and how to properly live. Maybe.


What are some movies that confused you? What did you think of my picks? Let’s talk about that!

TMP – TV Edition: Book Adaptations

It’s Thursday and I’m back with a new Thursday Movie Picks feature post. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.

As it so happens, we change it up once per month and talk about TV shows instead of movies and today is all about one of my favorite subjects – book adaptations. I’ve talked about movies and shows that were done well (or badly) before, but I’m really happy to do so again. Let’s jump right in!

Shadow and Bone

I’ve talked about this one at length here, but in short, it was a really neat adaptation! I think people who have never read the books might have been a bit lost at times, but in general, I was super happy with some of the developments. The cast is pretty much perfection and their chemistry is what makes this work.

The Rook

I will be forever salty that they cancelled this after just one season. I feel like we had one of the most compelling characters ever with Gestalt and now all of that was just wasted on a story that won’t get continued. I know that people who loved the book were disappointed, but I wasn’t a fan of the book and ADORED the show. You can read more of my thoughts here.

The Magicians

Honestly, I stopped watching after a while, but the show was still a lot better in a lot of ways than the books. I didn’t really love the books, but once again, the cast really made it work and the changes implemented on the show made sense for the most part. If you ever want to read the books, my firm opinion is that they get better over time. The first one really wasn’t it.

The Witcher

You can find my review of the first Witcher book here, but I haven’t read any of the others yet. Silly old me wanted to wait for Netflix covers for the books, but I’m not even sure they will make them. Either way, while I think the show has lost a bit of the innate humor of the book, it really tied in those anthology events nicely.

Dash & Lily

Veering a bit off course to talk about something non-magic related, I can really only recommend the Dash and Lily show on Netflix. It’s so cute. So fluffy. So Christmas-y. I watched it several times and just had a good time and while I don’t remember the books in detail, I think they did a great job in adapting them so far.

Normal People

I had my struggles with the book, but wow, was it memorable! I still think about it every so often, I now also own a copy of the TV scripts and am in awe of the leads of the show. While I think you get some great insights into the minds with the book, the show just furthered that intimate feeling and you really get invested in these characters and their mess. You can also read more in depth thoughts here.


There’s SO much more, but I’m gonna leave it at that for now. What are some of your favorite book to small screen adaptations? What are some you are excited for in the future?