The ‘Taken’ TV series is a real thing!!

taken-main.jpg

Ever wondered how Bryan Mills acquired his ‘particular set of skills?’ You may not need to speculate for much longer!

NBC have confirmed that they are in works to produce a ‘Taken’ television series! Set as a prequel to the original kidnap thriller, the show is expected to delve into the life of Liam Neeson’s character prior to his short-lived retirement.

Hollywood whispers are predicting that the screenplay will be drafted by none other than Luc Besson, who is the same man behind the epic 2008 smash.

taken-1442576926

In case you have been living under a rock for the last eight years, the original film stars mum’s favourite Liam Neeson as a retired CIA operative, who’s daughter is kidnapped by a nasty human trafficking gang. Using his super spy training, Mills vows to ‘look’ ‘find’ and ‘kill’ those responsible.

Despite being made on a relatively modest budget and with very little promotional work done beforehand, the film was a surprise success, gaining a cult following overnight. It made Neeson an unlikely action hero and it’s story spawned into two further films (albeit, not very good ones…)

The show follows in the footsteps of similar style television sequels to have be born out of much-loved movie franchises, including Bates Motel and Netflix’s ‘Scream’ TV series.

No premiere date has been given yet, but NBC have announced that muscle-bound Vikings star Clive Standen will take on the role of playing the younger Bryan Mills.  He certainly meets the tough guy criteria, what with all his axe-swinging Viking antics, and with a body like that, who cares if the acting is any good!

Clive-Standen1b6cdeac19c7b11ff19fffa4d7ea70fc

Advertisements

12 Walking Dead Gifs that Perfectly Describe Dating

 

The final episode in the sixth Season of zombie drama ‘The Walking Dead’ airs tonight, and it is guaranteed to be a nail-biting rollercoaster of emotions, that will have us second guessing until the last moment. Sounds a bit like dating doesn’t it? Come to think about it, if you look beyond all of the exploding heads and zombie guts, the show is practically a remastered version of Sex and the City! Here are twelve Walking Dead Gifs that are totally relatable to dating.

 

When they look nothing like their tinder profile

giphy (6)

When they take you to a steak house restaurant, but you’re a vegetarian

the-walking-dead-airs-on-sunday-nights-at-9-pm-et-on-amc (1)

When you sneak off to the bathroom to call your friends for help

giphy

When they’re a terrible kisser

tumblr_mbyejtoXAP1rzxujso1_500

When they won’t take no for an answer

giphy (8)

When you accidentally make eye contact with an ex across the bar

giphy (11)

When you think you’ve gone through all the bad ones, but they just keep coming

giphy (10)

When you move to third base

tumblr_o4e2p2GKSH1qkheaxo2_250

When they’ve read your Whatsapp message, but haven’t replied

giphy (9)

When you have a psycho moment

giphy (14)

When your heart gets broken

giphy (12).gif

When you finally meet the one

anigif_enhanced-2224-1408938967-15

Z for Zachariah (2015, Craig Zobel)

The dystopian genre has long proved popular on print, but faired more poorly when adapted to the big screen. Sadly Z for Zachariah joins the long list of apocalyptic offerings which fails to impress. Initially premiered at the Sundance film festival last year and due for UK release at some point in 2016, this adaptation of the book by the same name stars a minimalist cast of Margot Robbie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Chris Pine.

z-for-zachariah-cover1-s1x8np

In the movie, the world as we know it no longer exists. With most of the population wiped out by a mysterious water contamination disease, one woman survives a lonely existence until a ‘spaceman’ enters into her world. After inadvertently poisoning himself in the water, Ann (Robbie) nurses him back to health.

The two strangers provided companionship to one another, along with a sense of normality in an otherwise wholly un-normal situation. The longer they spend in each others company, the more human emotion and sexual instinct heighten.

Z-for-Zachariah_11_web

Conflictions arise around their opposing views on religion. Spaceman John (Ejiofor) is a scientist, with a logical, knowledge-based mind, whilst Ann is the daughter of a pastor, who thanks God for her survival.

Before long, a third body enters into the equation. Caleb (Pine) is a southern-born white man from a farming background, who finds common ground with Ann in their shared faith. John grows jealous of their closeness, and tensions brew between the two men as masculine rivalry takes over.

Z-for-Zachariah-poster

Ann’s love lies with John, but she feels rejected by him, whilst Caleb gives her the attention she yearns for.

The ending, in typical dystopian style, is a mysterious one, which leaves the audience asking – how far is man willing to go for the last woman on earth?

Margot Robbie proves herself to be a varied actress, going from a promiscuous pretty girl in ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, and violent vixen Harley Quinn in the upcoming ‘Suicide Squad’ movie, to a bare-faced, simple living farm girl, sheltered from the everyday materialism we take for granted. Otherwise though, Z for Zachariah is slow and somber, and likely to drop of the cinema radar just like the human population in it’s story.

 

Burnt (2016, John Wells)

BurntBANNER-1400x650

Regular readers of the blog will know that I LOVED John Favreau’s Chef movie, so I was naturally drawn to Bradley Cooper latest food-themed offering, Burnt. It should be noted that similarities between the two films pretty much end in the kitchen. Burnt is more adult, and explores a lot darker themes than the feel-good, family feast that Chef prepared for us. That said, it reveals itself to be an easy watch, with a pleasing cast who are equally as photogenic as the food they prepare!

Cooper’s character is Adam Jones; once an exciting young chef creating a buzz in one of Paris’ top restaurants, whose taste for narcotics and other nasties intermittently left him burnt out and jobless.

Adam spends the next five years in solitude, sobering himself up and repenting for his sins. When he finally believes he has paid his dues, he packs his bags and heads for London to reignite his cooking career.

burnt-film-review

Once there, he spends the first few weeks tracking down old acquaintances from his Paris days and trying to make amends for his past mistakes. They forgive him, of course, and along with a few other unwitting chef’s he manages to coerce into joining his vagabond club, they set out to earn a Michelin star.

Having tasted success before, Adam is arrogantly confident that he is destined to triumph again. What he fails to consider, is that the restaurant industry has gone through a lot of changes since his days at the top. He is out of touch, and soon finds himself in over his head. Luckily, help is at hand in the form of an adventurous young chef (Sienna Miller), who introduces him to the new craft of culinary.

image

The writers take inspiration from real-life, infamously hot-headed chefs like Gordon Ramsey and Marco Pierre-White, to create a lead character who is as fiery as the chillis in his pantry.

Where the storyline flags is in the subplots, which are only momentarily touched upon and fail to really take off. As a result, character building is kept fairly minimal, which is a shame, as I feel the likes of Helene (Miller) could have revealed quite an interesting backstory.

That said, Burnt is still a crowd pleaser, and a recommeded watch for any of my fellow film foodies!

Amy (2015, Asif Kapadia)

amy

The name Amy Winehouse resonates a mixture of emotions in people across the world. For me, feelings which immediately spring to mind include talent, tragedy, sorrow and shame.

Asif Kapadia somehow manages to capture all of these and so many more, in his 2015 biopic, Amy. Compiled from interviews with those who were around during her rapid rise to fame and media clips documenting her highs and lows, as well as never-seen-before private videos and photographs, Amy  delivers the most intimate insights into the late star’s heartbreakingly short life.

To help the audience understand the sort of person that Amy Winehouse was, Asif goes back to 2001, long before the world of celebrity had engulfed her. Amy is just 17 years old; playful, full of life and charisma. Her outward appearance is an apparent picture of health and a stark contrast to the troubled, drug-dependant young woman we became accustomed to reading about in the headlines.

amy-winehouse-teen1

What is consistent throughout her journey is her dedication to music. Her relationship to her artistry is a deeply personal one. Amy herself admits that all of her lyrics are derived from personal experiences and she pours her emotions into them, as showcased through her wonderfully unique voice.

However, she is clearly naive about the music industry and the limelight which goes hand in hand with it. One achieved clip shows a teenage Amy being asked by the interviewer how she believes she will cope with fame. She chillingly replies, “I don’t think I could handle it – I’d go mad!”. Her words are almost a fore-warning for what would later destroy her.

Meeting Blake Fielder was the catalyst for the beginning of her downward spiral. Their turbulent romance was infamously laced with ups and downs, not least their life-threatening drug problems. Winehouse’s management team famously attempted to coerce her into rehab, but this was blocked by her fame-hungry father Mitch.

565830d9ff0a99e6f256ca95e331c9c3

The documentary exposes a troubled upbringing and early calls for help. By the age of 13, Amy was on anti-depressants, battling bulimia and housing resentment towards her father following his affair – experiences which lent inspiration to the lyrics in her songs.

Amy’s second album, ‘Back to Black’, propelled her to new levels of success. Met with critical acclaim, and earning her a Brit award and no less than six Grammy’s, Amy found herself in the middle of the feeding pit, hounded daily by the press. The paparazzi shown in the documentary are like vultures, and their total disregard for this vulnerable young woman is shameful.

The documentary is careful to show that Amy did seek help for her substance abuse issues prior to her untimely death, and had in fact cleaned up. Following ‘Back to Black’, she went on to record a classic jazz album with her long-time idol, Tony Bennett. During their meeting, she is nervous, self-conscious and star struck, and it is endearing to see glimmers of young, innocent Amy are still there, despite her own immense success.

The Brit Awards 2004 Shortlist Announced

What I took from the documentary was that Amy Winehouse, regardless of her demons, was simply an ingenuous girl, surrounded by the wrong people. From her manipulative, money-grabbing father, pursuing his own stardom, to her using, estranged husband Blake, who comes across as the biggest leech of all.

As well all know too well, Amy’s story sadly ended in 2011, when she was found dead in her Camden flat, aged just 27. A tragic end to one of this generation’s finest talents. Asif shows that Amy was just a normal girl who never wanted the fame that was thrust upon her, and who was ready to give it all up for peace. I hope she has it now.

hqdefault

Creed (2015, Ryan Coogler)

Creed_Movie_Poster

I know I’m a bit late to the party, but I finally got around to watching the latest spin-off to the Rocky collection during a recent long-haul flight. ‘Creed’ brings the Rocky journey up to a grand total of seven feature-length films. It is fair to say that usually by the third or fourth film in movie series, the plotline has virtually disapparated! That was certainly the case with Rocky 5 (awful) and also to an extent with the sixth instalment, Rocky Balboa, which failed to wow at the box office.

Sylvester Stallone has admitted himself that he believed Rocky had been ‘put to bed’ at the end of the sixth film, and was reluctant to awaken him. That was, until a little known filmmaker named Ryan Coogler (the same talented producer behind the award-winning, Fruitvale Station) came to him with a script, which proposed a spin off from the aging boxers tale. And thus, ‘Creed’ was born.

The film’s protagonist this time around is a young man named Adonis (Michael B. Jordan). Described as ‘a good kid who just fights all the time’, he was orphaned at a young age and placed in a young offender’s institute,where he was forced to sit on a mountain of grief and anger. His future initially looks bleak, but his life is changed entirely when he receives a visit from a wealthy lady named Mary Anne. She reveals to Adonis that he is the illegitimate son of her late husband, who just so happens to be Rocky legend, Apollo Creed! Mary Anne adopts Adonis and raises him as if he were her own. His life goes from rags to riches overnight, as he begins to reap the wealth and benefits left from his father’s legacy.

Creed00906.dng

Despite his life being opened up to a window of opportunities and advancements, Adonis can’t help but shake the feeling that all the materialistic stuff is not for him. He still houses a lot of anger that he needs to offload. He soon finds that release in boxing. Adonis fights for the pain and the realness that it brings. Aspiring to follow in his father’s footsteps, he seeks out his old sparring partner – Rocky Balboa.

Balboa has since retired from the fight, and is content running a dingy cocktail bar in Philadelphia, unsurprisingly named ‘Adrian’s’. He initially rejects Adoni’s requests to be trained, but after a little bit of emotional blackmail, he agrees to take on the task as an ode to his former friend.

creed-movie-release-date-2015

This is where the hard work begins. Adonis is confident, cocky and reckless all at once, but the aging champ does not shy away from putting him through his paces; from synchronized skipping routines, to live chicken chases! As with the original Rocky movies, the training montage scenes will make you feel like going ten rounds with a punching bag at the gym.

Adonis starts out as the underdog, keen to create his own legacy. When it is inevitably leaked that he is the secret son of Apollo Creed, he quickly gathers interest in the boxing world, notably from the world number one, Ricky Connelly (played by real-life boxer and two-time world title challenger, Tony Bellew). The bad boy scouse scrapper is pitted against young Creed, for what it destined to be the fight of his career.

1

The build-up to the fight, the commentary and even the profiles of the fictional boxers who appear in the film, are delivered in such a believable and authentic fashion that you would be forgiven for thinking that you were watching ESPN or HBO sport. The fight scenes themselves are also frighteningly realistic, with fast, close-up camera shots used to capture every nose crunching moment.

Veteran Rocky fans should note that ‘Creed’ is not merely a follow on from Rocky Balboa. This is Adonis’ story, with Balboa featuring as a supporting figure. That is not to say, however, that Stallone’s legendary character does not get his own scene time. Now older and wiser, Rocky develops a paternal attachment to the young man he affectionately calls ‘Donny’. His feelings stem from the respect he holds for Donny’s father, as well as his own experience of the ruthless world of boxing.

Creed05720.dng

Late in the film, Rocky receives some news regarding his health which forces him to re-evaluate his outlook on life. Once bitter for the loves he has lost and too proud to accept the help of others, Adonis teaches him to fight again. I really enjoyed getting to witness this softer side to the tough-guy, macho bravado we are all familiar with when we think of Rocky, and whilst I initially scoffed at Sylvester Stallone’s supporting actor win at the Golden Globes, I can now appreciate it worthiness.

Another convincing relationship to emerge from the film is the one between Adonis and his love interest, Bianca (as played by Tessa Thompson). Jordan and Thompson are electrifying together. If they are not already a couple, someone needs to make that happen fast!

creed-adonis-bianca-2015

All in all, ‘Creed’ is a story of inner strength and finding acceptance. For anyone put off by the Rocky association, don’t be. ‘Creed’ is fresher, with a firmer storyline and an exciting new cast, which reaches new dynamics and generations. For long-time Rocky fans, this is the revamp that the franchise needed to bring it into the 21rst century, without disrespecting the original 70s & 80s classics

International Women’s Day 2016 – Sassy Ladies of Cinema

The Bride (Kill Bill)

Uma Thurman has never been fiercer as revenge-seeking assassin, ‘The Bride’, in Quentin Tarantino’s machete fuelled mirage, Kill Bill. When her Wedding is turned into a bloodbath and an attempt is made on her life, ‘The Bride’ vows to hunt down those responsible and ensure they meet a merciless end.

The film aroused a lot of interest at its point of release due to the lead character, (along with many of the supporting cast) being a woman, which is unusual for an action-based film. Tarantino succeeded in creating a female warrior and accumulated a broad new female fanbase in the process.

Kill bill - tarantino
Princess Merida (Brave)

Merida is Pixar’s first female lead and offers girls everywhere an alternative type of Princess to look up to.

Headstrong, free-spirited and of course, brave, our Princess would rather practise her sword-fighting or brush up her archery, than complete the boring royal duties assigned to her.

A healthy role model to the world’s young ladies, Merida shows that all girls have a the power to choose the path they wish to follow, and most importantly, that path need not be influenced by a Prince. Let’s hear it for girl power!!

article-2331417-19CDCCCC000005DC-362_634x397


Erin Brockovich (Erin Brockovich)

Known for typically playing pretty wallflower, Julia Robert surprised the critics when she took on the role of a fiery single mother at war with a corrupt energy corporation.
Roberts won praise for her representation of a mother fighting to do right by her kids, whatever it takes.

Erin-Brockovich-DI


Ellen Ripley (Alien)

When Ridley Scott wrote the first draft for the original Alien film, he envisioned an all-male human crew. He later had a change of heart and went on to cast Sigourney Weaver as Warrant Officer Ellen Ripley, in what is regarded as one of her most iconic roles to date.

Her character broke the mould in that she did not succumb to the stereotypical glamour or fantasy model we expect from female leads. Instead, Ripley is make-up free, unconcerned with her appearance and treated entirely as an equal to her male teammates.

Ellen Ripley has been named in numerous polls and surveys as one of the biggest movie badasses of all time, even pipping the likes of Mad Max and Rambo to the post!

DSCN44343_zpsf3cb8f25
Jackie Brown (Jackie Brown)

Before the Bride, Jackie Brown was Tarantino’s original muse. She was the streetwise criminal mastermind, who managed to blindsight both the cops and the nasty drug dealer blackmailing her, to pull off the biggest scam of all.

Jackie is independent and relies on no man. Everything, from her walk to her perfectly groomed air-hostess hairdo, oozes confidence and sex appeal, and she has an almost spell-binding effect on every male she comes into contact with. She calls the shots and leaves her male counterparts to do all the running around. Go girlfriend!

jackie-brown-quentin-tarantino

10 More Things I hate about Facebook

51YSLfjYwEL._SX397_BO1,204,203,200_

I thought I had vented all my Facebook frustration in my last post, but it turns out I still had a lot of hate stored up. Here are another 10 examples of Facebook faux pas that grind my gears…

 

1. When someone starts a Facebook status with the phrase, “Well, that’s it official…”
The Oxford dictionary definition of the word OFFICIAL refers to a decision or action taken by ‘people in authority’. So just because you’ve decided to book a wee holiday to Ibiza or purchase a baby pink coloured Renault mini, does not give you any kind of authority to clog up my newsfeed. Sit down, please.

57560781

2. People who seek out domestic services over Facebook. ‘Anybody know a good plumber?’. Sadly not, but I know who can help you … GOOGLE!

3. The over-sharing mother. We get it. You love your child, and that’s really sweet, and whilst I have no issue what so ever with you posting about little Tommy’s first steps, words or play date, I’d really rather not hear about his first independent poo. TMI!

4. Your own mother on Facebook. Thankfully, I have never had to personally endure this public humiliation (thanks, mum), but have witnessed the embarrassment that other middle-aged mother’s have administered upon my now adult friends. Their crimes range from calling their kids out for cursing to uploading naked bath pictures of them as a #TBT. If my mother ever joins the digital age, I am officially logging off.

5800f6a190dd1e5d463987c51561739a_650x

5. People who post song lyrics as a status. Wow. You are literally so boring and unimaginative that you can’t even think of something original to write yourself, so instead you have resorted to repeating the words of Avicci ‘Hey Brother’. Bravo.

6. The countdown sun-seekers. You know the type, who remind you daily of how many milliseconds remain until they jet off for a fortnight (normally to somewhere beige like Ibiza/Benidorm).

7. People who go on holiday, only to spend all of their time on social media, preaching about how great a time they are allegedly having. I’ll believe that when you tear yourself away from your phone…

32550028

8. The narcissists who take multiple selfies of themselves positioned in the exact same pose or position in their room, to the point where clicking through their profile pictures feels a bit like a flipbook. Mix it up once in a while!

9. The Facebook freedom fighter. The type who have read one Daily Mail article about Scottish Independence, and are now convinced that they are destined to become the next leader of the SNP. These people also tend to be extremely arrogant, and unwilling to consider alternative viewpoints other than their own. Which often make for entertaining viewing, when inevitably they are publically schooled by someone who possesses a far superior knowledge of the chosen subject than them. Read and weep bitchez!

10. The serial Facebook complainer. I know what you are thinking – I’ve got quite a cheek to include this reason in the list, given the nature of this blog post. In my defense however, I am posting in on my own private blog page. What I can’t abide, is the people who post depressing statuses complaining about the most mundane topics known to man… like the weather or how they’re not feeling well. Stop dragging the rest of us down into your pit of misery!!!

Untitled

House Of Cards Season 4: The Annual Binge Watch

anything-for-america-1260x840.jpg

It can’t be a coincidence that the season 4 debut comes out right in the middle of the primaries. This elegant timing by the producers only adds to the hype surrounding the return of this epic political drama.

Carrying on from last years tradition, my boyfriend and I held our House of Cards day, complete with deep-South inspired snacks, where we vowed to dedicate our entire day to binge watching the full season.

image

I’ll be the first to admit that I was a little disappointed with Season 3. After the unforgivable murders of both Zoe’s Barnes and Peter Russo in Season’s 1 & 2, the stakes were high for Underwood to deliver another killer move (pardon the pun). Sadly, that moment never came, and the episodes plodded on slowly. However, it becomes apparent upon watching Season 4 that the writers were simply biding their time and building up to this.

This season is a real world-wind of highs and lows that will have you on the edge of your seat. Much of this is down to the show’s leading star, Kevin Spacey. He truly is a phenomenal actor, with his talent put on display this season more than ever before. He portrays Frank across a wide scope of emotions, ranging from anger and cruelty to remorse and even fear (I wouldn’t have believed it either if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes!!).

Frank’s monologues are really what makes the show. These intimate openings into his warped mind keep viewers coming back for more, wondering what despicable stunt he is going to pull next. He continues to shock.

With so many twists and turns, I thought it would be best to summarise this Season by analysing the range of themes which are explored through the many subplots which entail.

**WARNING – SPOILERS AHEAD**

 

1. Power

Season 3 was a fraught one for the Underwood’s. As we know, it ended rather abruptly, with Claire walking out on Frank at the height of his candidacy race. Relations still haven’t mellowed in Season 4.

The campaign continues, but Claire decides to fling a curveball into the mix. She voices a desire to run for congress in her native Texas, no longer content allowing her ambitions to fall second to his.

Frank is not happy at being undermined by her, and in his typical arrogant fashion, imposes a lockdown on Claire’s movement, to censor her divorce requests. She is imprisoned in her own home. Claire responds to this by enlisting the help of Frank’s old sparring partner, Oren Chase (the peach man from season one) to leak a racist photo of Frank’s alcoholic father alongside a KKK figure, just as Frank is trying to gather support in the mostly black and Hispanic state of his hometown Gaffney.

The impact this has on Frank’s campaign is of course deeply damaging, and he is not best pleased.

giphy-facebook_s (1)

Continuing with the theme of power, this brings us to Underwood’s chief of staff, Doug Stamper. In the past, we have seen Doug in some compromising positions, the most concerning being when he buried Rachel Posner in a shallow ditch last season. His murderous acts aside, Doug kind of seemed to be getting his shit together. He had ditched the booze, got himself a hot physio girlfriend and reached the top of his career game. However, I can confirm he is still very much insane.

Example A – when he attempts to suffocate his co-worker Seth in order to obtain his ‘obedience’. Seth and Leann (Claire’s new equivalent to Doug) unite together to stand up to Doug, who crumbles at the prospect of losing power. With the temptation of alcohol looming, Seth tries to help him, but Doug mistakes this for manipulation. He does not recognise an honest act of kindness when it stares him in the face

Doug_house of cards_crazy

2. Deceit

The introduction of Claire’s mother provides a glimpse into of her former life, pre-Underwood. Like her daughter, Mama Hale is cold and callous. She makes it clear that she never approved of Frank and his impoverished upbringing, to which Frank respond sneeringly, “I just happen to be white trash that lives in the White House”.

Claire’s mother comes from old money, and she encourages her wealthy uptown ladies club to finance her son-in-laws rival candidate, Heather Dunbar, and in turn, support Claire’s taking down of Francis.

Frank has some tricks of his own up his sleeve. He announces plans to fund the Congresswoman of Texas’ breast cancer clinic and endorse her daughter in the process as her future successor. There go Claire’s plans …

images

New on the scene is a younger, fresher power couple to rival the Underwood’s. Governor Conway, a war veteran with chiselled good looks and a photogenic family to match, is the other front runner in the presidential candidacy race. The Conway’s are social media obsessed, and grant the public full access to their lives through a live webcam stream.

Their intentions are not entirely good, however, as it is revealed that Conway is using, Pollyhop, a search engine, to give him an insight into voters data and potential manipulate the vote. The topic of domestic surveillance is particularly relevant, in light of the Edward Snowdon leaks back in 2013, and the on-going debate over how much access National Security should have to our personal data. As always, the producers are on the ball with this one.

lead_large.png

The race continues. Back on the same team, the Underwood’s play dirty politics with Cathy Durant. They concoct a plan to make Claire Frank’s runner mate, with Cathy unsuspectingly playing along under the illusion that the job is hers. However, when she finds out that they have been stringing her along, they do not anticipate her own comeback.

What I particularly enjoyed most about this season was the insight it gave into the backdoor theatrics which go into preparing the speeches that the President presents in public. You can absolutely believe that these type of performances are played out by Barack Obama himself in a private room in the White House before he takes to the stage. In Frank’s own words, ‘politics is showbiz’.

3. Pain

Cast your mind back to Frank’s days as Vice President, and you may recall the name, Lucas Goodwin. He was the journalist who worked alongside Zoe Barnes and became obsessed with uncovering the truth behind her untimely death. Frank halted his investigations by framing him for crimes against the State, which in turn, led to his incarceration. His life now is a tragic one. We find him reciting pornographic literature in his prison cell to a fellow inmate to help him get off, in return for sanctuary. We later learn that this is his ticket out of jail as he is actually working with the FBI for insider information, for the promise of a reduced sentence.

house-of-cards-netflix-season-4

He is released under a new identity, but cannot forget about the corruption he uncovered. Desperate for the truth to come out, he goes to extreme lengths, including having forced sex with a male co-worker. It is all for nothing though, for when he goes to Heather Dunbar with the secrets of Frank’s torrid past, she sends him away.

With nowhere else to turn to, Goodwin does the unthinkable. He becomes the first man (surprising, considering…) who attempts the assassination of President Underwood! Frank is shot in the stomach, which shatters his liver. Meechum, his ever faithful lapdog, is killed in the altercation. For the first time, the audience must consider the prospect of a House of Card’s without Frank, as he is deemed to be in a critical condition.

Lucas’ pain is that of a man in complete despair, who can see no way back. Frank displays a different kind of pain, over Claire leaving him. Primarily, because he recognises the damage the split could do to his career. But additionally, because Claire is as much a part of his makeup as his shattered liver. He begs her to stay with him; ‘It’s us against them’.

images (1)

4. Guilt

This is not a word I thought I would ever associate with Frank Underwood, but as the season develops, Frank’s own fears begin to unravel. Whilst under aesthetic following the shooting, he experiences troubling night terrors. In the beginning, they form a violent dream, in which Claire stabs him and attempts to gauge his eyes out. Later, the dreams drag up memories of the crimes he has committed and the people he has killed. Zoe and Russo’s reappearances are an allegory for the suffocation of guilt that Frank feels.

house-of-cards-zoe-frank-peter

Doug also battles with his own guilt, which he feels for the man on the organ donor list whom he bumped into second place behind the president. This man subsequently died due to the delay. Doug’s conscience convinces him to donate $5000 to his memorial fund, which prompts a grateful phone call from the dead man’s widow. Little does she know that Doug is the man responsible for her husband’s demise.

5. Love

The emotion of Love is again identified in the most unlikely subject – Frank. In his most vulnerable state, he expresses love for those closest to him, such as Meechum and Claire. At first, Claire rejects this love. Just days after the shooting, she chooses to fly to Germany to meet for talks with the Russian’s and the Chinese, rather than stay behind in Washington to be with Frank. When she does returns, she takes a nap first before going to visit him. No love lost this season.

Their relationship has always been an unconventional one, though, and recognising this, Frank encourages Claire to seek out what she does not get from their relationship elsewhere. “One person cannot give everything to another person”.

4428283-9265294587-aRgIo.png

This is where Frank’s ghost writer from the last season fits back in. When Tom Yates was first introduced in Season 3, it looked as though writers were setting the scene for him and Frank to hook-up. In fact, there was so much sexual tension in the room, you could cut it with a knife! As it turns out, the tension was in fact between Tom and Claire. They get together in Season 4, with Frank’s blessing of course, and Claire finally gets some actions (the poor woman has been starved of sex since the Meechum incident!!!).

There is a weird moment where the three of them sit around the dinner table, sharing a rather measly looking breakfast consisting of one slice apple (singular).

Speaking of three-ways, Meechum, for the short time he’s in this season, is still a love sick puppy dog for the Underwood’s. You can almost hear the seduction in Frank’s voice as he encourages Meechum to ‘spread his fingers a little’ when he traces his hand on the white house walls. Weird!!

6. Truth

Following his death, Lucas’ evidence is leaked to the press. It is dismissed as the ramblings of a madman, but one of his old journo friends debates whether there could be any truth in it? Frank is hardly short of enemies, and some deep delving uncovers many of the dark secrets he has fought to keep buried. Garret returns from the shadows, where he was shunned by Frank in Season 2. Remy and Jackie agree to cooperate, and in turn, release themselves from under the Underwood’s blackmail plot.

Frank’s world comes crashing down as Hammerschimdt goes to press with his sensationalist story of his corruption laced rise to power. Where does this leave the Underwood’s, now that their masks have been torn off? We will just need to wait until Season 5 to find out!!!

giphy

NBC’s Pilot for ‘Cruel Intentions’ – The questions we’ve been waiting 17 years to be answered!

Back in 1999, Cruel Intentions added some much-needed spice to the teen movie genre. It was sexy, sophisticated and down right cruel. Two sequels would follow the original 1999 flick, but neither would echo the success of this now cult classic.

This tragic romance ended with such abruptness, leaving so many questions unanswered. Luckily for us, NBC revealed plans in October last year to release a pilot for a continuation of the film storyline.

The team behind this exciting project includes Roger Kumble, the director responsible for the debut film, who is backed up by several of the original cast members, including Blair and Gellar.

cruel-intentions

It will be set 15 years on from the events which scorned their teenage years. Here are five things I hope to learn from the proposed prequel…

1.What happened to Annette?

Wholesome Annette was the exemplar of an all-American sweetheart. The complete antithesis of warped Kathryn, she was kind, god-fearing and pure. That was of course until she met Sebastian. Initially, Kathryn’s step-brother’s intentions were bad ones. However as the film progressed, he began to develop true feelings for Annette, which in time she also reciprocated. Sadly as we know, their love was to be short lived.

We last saw Annette driving down the New York highway and into the distance. Where was she going and where is she now?

reesedrivingoffCIbye1.gif

So far, these facts remain unknown. But what we do know is that her one time rendezvous with Manhattans biggest man slut left her pregnant. She gave birth to a fatherless son, who is set to be introduced as a lead character in the new show – much to the horror of his evil aunt Kathryn!!

2. Did Kathryn and Sebastian ever get it on?

Long before the Lannister’s arrived on the scene, these two were the original incestuous siblings. The premise of the first movie was a sickening bet, bound by twisted terms which included the promise of inter-family sex.

As we know, Sebastian won the bet, only to then turn down Kathryn’s advances upon discovering his new found love of virginal blond’s from Kansas city!

8-Cruel-Intentions-quotes

However with so much sexual chemistry between the two, it’s hard to believe that they managed to abstain from one another for so long! Does Kathryn still burn a dimly lit candle for her late brother? And will the hidden secrets of their messed-up relationship reveal themselves when the TV show airs?

3. Who are Sebastian and Kathyn’s parents?

The mysterious Merteuil’s are non-existent in the original film. Little is known about them, other than they are responsible for the delicious pairing of Kathryn and Sebastian, and are incredibly wealthy and connected.Take for example the photograph of them with former President Bill Clinton (good photo shop effort guys!). This is in fact, the only time we do get to see them.

clintonCI123

For two people to produce two equally evil children, they’ve got to be pretty repugnant themselves right? Perhaps they will make an appearance in the TV pilot, in light of the discovery of their long-lost grandson!

4. Did Cecil and Ronald get their happily ever after?

Simple Cecil and her love-struck violin tutor Ronald were always an odd match I thought. Ronald was certainly the more experienced of the two, but it was Cecil’s innocent nature that he found endearing. Despite some initial setbacks, including the racial ignorance of Cecil’s snobbish mother, they finally got together.

MV5BMTczNjk2NzMwN15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwMzQ3ODc3._V1_SX640_SY720_

Their love story ran into trouble however, when Ronald learnt of Cecil and Sebastian’s arrangement and opened up a can off whoop-ass on him. Which just to point out, is total double standards considering he was happy to act as Kathryn’s little play thing whenever she got bored…

With so much lying and cheating in the early days, is it possible that their relationship could have survived the test of time?

5.Is Kathryn still Queen bitch?

I will answer this one for you right now – OF COURSE SHE FUCKING IS! The question is, how far will she be willing to go to retain her crown?

11-Cruel-Intentions-quotes