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Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Downfall of Manchester United

It has been a while since I last updated this blog, so it's time for a comprehensive update, especially given the spate of exciting events happening in the Premier League right now.

We saw Luis Suarez, a highly talented though controversial player, exit Liverpool to join the star-studded team of Barcelona which already boast the likes of Lionel Messi and Neymar Jr.

Both are the respective star players of their national teams, Argentina and Brazil though Neymar was ruled out towards the end of the World Cup due to a horrific injury.

Of course, with Suarez out of Anfield, Liverpool had been looking to replace their prolific striker who had formed a lethal and definitely memorable partnership with fellow strike partner Daniel Sturridge.

Perhaps, in an elevation of heightened controversy, manager Brendan Rodgers signed yet another controversial and troubled striker, Mario Balotelli, who has played for AC Milan and rivals Manchester City.

It has yet to be seen whether Balotelli will be able to form a potentially dangerous partnership with Sturridge on the pitch given his temperamental antics off the field, which Rodgers will be keeping an eye out for.

With Liverpool boosting their squad ahead of their Champions League involvement (they were drawn in the same group as defending champions Real Madrid), their fierce rivals Manchester United and Chelsea have been looking to do the same.

With the chosen one, Jose Mourinho, firmly in charge, Chelsea has sold David Luis to Paris Saint Germain (PSG) for a record fee and the latest, Fernando Torres who experienced a largely unhappy time at Chelsea ever since he moved from Liverpool. Ironically, Liverpool is thriving without Torres.

Torres is set to join AC Milan.

All eyes are certainly on Manchester United, which has largely languished and posed almost no imminent threat to the title challenge thus far. David Moyes was unceremoniously sacked towards the end of the season, with Ryan Giggs taking over as temporary player-manager for the remaining games of the season with limited success.

Then came the World Cup and Holland missed out on a spot in the finals though they eventually won third place under favoured head coach Louis Van Gaal.

Van Gaal was then shipped over to United after his tremendous success with Holland, and tasked with an arduous job of revamping the once formidable champions under Sir Alex Ferguson.

However, Van Gaal has gone four competitive games without a win, with a second string side crashing 4 - 0 unexpectedly to a team playing two leagues below. To cap off United's poor start to the season, they failed to beat newly promoted side, Burnley, which registered their first point on the board.

Match to watch today - Tottenham versus Liverpool

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Emirates Cup: Arsenal takes the lead

Arsenal vs Benfica 
Emirates Cup. Final Results 5 - 1

The score was 4-0 but it was only half-time. Arsenal's Sanogo finally scored a hat trick in an Arsenal jersey, with Campbell adding a fourth. Ramsay has had an impressive game thus far too. 

At half time, Chamberlain was taken off by manager Arsene Wenger who was visibly happy with his side's results, save for a couple of defensive lapses. 

However, this will certainly not be Benfica's day as they, too, prepare for their ucpcoming season and will be looking to fight their way back in the second half to keep the score respectable. 

Together with Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchestsr City, Arsenal will be competing in the Champions League and will be looking to increase the depth of their squad. 

Sanogo added another goal, following a deflected shot from the keeper who made a save, just minutes after the break to give Benfica a thumping of 5 - 0.

Arsenal eventually won the match with an impressive win of 5 - 1 over Benfica. 

Monday, July 28, 2014

Movie Review: The Croods

Set in prehistoric times, this animated film depicts the story of a three-generation family who embarks on a hilarious family adventure when a apocalypse destroys their beacon of safety - the cave where they have been living for quite some time.

With a tinge of curiosity that begins to grow within her, Eve, the daughter of patriarch Grug, starts to explore beyond the small boundaries of the cave, much to the chagrin of her father who preached that staying safe is the only way for survival.

Needless to say, this leads to conflict between father and daughter and perhaps the theme of young versus old in this family-oriented movie that boasts wonderful sights and fantastical world of colour.

Thankfully for them, they meet Guy, a teenager whom Eve starts to fall in love with and harnessing the gradual disapproval of Grug who has to find ways to win over the hearts of his family while ensuring their safety.

We certainly recommend this one for kids and for the family to watch and enjoy, especially for the younger ones who will be able to relate to the characters portrayed.

You might also like:
  1. Roger Ebert's movie review
  2. IMDB Ratings of The Croods
  3. Rotten Tomatos - The Croods
We have also done reviews of other movies, check them out on this blog!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Movie Review: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The human race has come a long way since the making of blockbuster films which have turned into movie classics such as Jumanji (1995) and Casper.

Both films were considered to be the best of what technology had to offer then, being CGI-heavy but were subsequently outdone by every other movie churned out by the giant studios of the time. One need not look further than Avatar and Transformers.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is the sequel to 2011 film Rise of the Planet of the Apes which saw a rogue laboratory experimenting on apes and ultimately spawned the uprising of the abused lab rats.

What's interesting about this movie is the underlying theme of power struggles within both species.

Among the surviving humans who are genetically immune to the ALZ-113 virus that caused the collapse of human civilisation, the two founding members are at odds over what form of method they should employ against their hairy counterparts.

Malcolm managed to convince Dreyfus to give him three days to convince the apes to help them restore power, to which under the charge of Caesar, managed to do so.

However, Caesar's right-hand man, a severely scarred ape called Koba, disobeyed Caesar and ultimately seized the throne in his bid to wage war against the humans.

This is definitely a must-watch, with CGI allowing for a smooth transition between character and form.

Related: Wikipedia - Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Singapore Ad Spoofed by Celebrities

It's a rare occurrence that one witnesses advertisements by Singapore being parodied and spoofed by popular celebrities and this one was with regard to a powerful anti-gambling advertisement by the National Council on Problem Gambling.

Despite the widespread mocking of the ad around the world, the agency behind the peculiarly accurate prediction of Germany winning the World Cup has defended its ad and "believes it has done its job" according to this article published by Asiaone.

US talk show host Jimmy Fallon was among one of the first to joke about the ad and even had his production crew to make a video parody of the ad, showing 'Andy', the boy featured in the video, smiling at the very end. The tagline was also changed to "Keep It. Gamble".

It turns out that Jimmy Fallon isn't the only talk show host to make fun of the ad. Here's another where John Olivier takes a swipe by two remade videos.