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Chiara / March 2, 2017 , Thu / films & music, lgbtqia

1. sense8

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I don’t see how Sense8 couldn’t be on a list of favourite shows with LGBTQIA+ characters. This show is so queer and it is so wonderful. Even though at times I am not 100% sure of the storyline regarding the sensate business I thoroughly enjoy every episode I watch. The character relationships and the romantic relationships are all A+. YAY FOR SUPPORT AND FOUND FAMILIES.

Also huge kudos to Netflix for hiring a transwoman actress to act in a transwoman role. If only the rest of the world would do this for trans roles (and all LGBTQIA+ roles, let’s be real).

In my Googling for this post, I just found out that one of the creators said that ‘in theory’ all of the characters in Sense8 are pansexual so *endless cheering and excitement and yeses*

2. orphan black

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I had heard about Orphan Black a lot, but I was never particularly interested in watching it. Then, one fateful day, I was browsing through Netflix and decided to see what all the fuss was about. I then proceeded to binge the entire series (except for the last season which releases this year – NO, DON’T LEAVE ME).

Orphan Black is as good as you’ve heard. The storyline can get a little complex and convoluted at times, and literally nothing ever goes right, but damn this show is good. And Maslany’s ability to portray so many different characters is freaking amazing.

As for the LGBTQIA+ aspect: Cosima, one of the four main clones in the show is gay, and there was also a transguy clone who had a small role, as well. Cosima’s romance with Delphine is really adorable and also wrought with heartbreak because this is Orphan Black we are talking about here.

3. pretty little liars

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Yes, this show is kind of terrible but I cannot help but love it. Also, a girl loving girl of colour is one of the main characters so that alone is a 100% valid reason to watch.

The fact that Emily’s romances get as much screentime and angst and cuteness as all the cishet ones makes me happy. Because when my cute queer couples are sidelined for the cishet ones I am not happy.

At the point where I’m up to in this show Emily hasn’t fond her endgame girlfriend but it better happen. After all the A crap she deserves a happily ever after.

4. shadowhunters

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Okay so the acting might be terrible, and they have changed the storyline so much from the books that it’s barely recognisable … but I can’t help but watch this. And Malec is so BEAUTIFUL. And haven’t been denoted to just the cute m/m couple. They are adorable together, yes, but they also disagree and talk about important things and are real! people!

I’ve also heard rumours that Simon is going to be pansexual and so help me lord if this happens because it would be AMAZING.

5. how to get away with murder

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How to Get Away with Murder started off with two cis male gay characters (one of whom is a man of colour), and then BAM Annalise is bi/pan (so far I haven’t seen her use a word to describe her identity). THIS MADE ME SO HAPPY I CANNOT EVEN.

I loved this show before it was revealed that Annalise had been in a relationship with a woman (and then kind of continued that relationship in the present), but my respect for the show went up by approximately 100% after that point. It’s still such a big deal (and I mean this in the exciting way, obviously) when shows have queer characters, and for one this popular and widely consumed to expand upon a character’s sexuality in the second season was just incredible.

Have you watched any of these shows? Do you want to? What are some of your favourite shows with LGBTQIA+ characters?

Chiara / November 17, 2015 , Tue / films & music

I’m here talking about horror movies (again – I did tell you I would talk about them, did I not?). And some horror movies for people who don’t like horror movies, because I plan to take over the world by forcing persuading people to watch and read the things I love to watch and read (my plan is perfection, obviously. You’ll all be bowing at my feet one day soon, I am sure).

Sometimes, when I mention my love for horror movies, my friend or random person will gasp: oh, how I detest horror movies!

Which will elicit a confused expression on my behalf, and a bewildered wondering why on earth anyone would detest horror movies. The thrills! The fear! The avoidance of the bathroom and all dark windows and mirrors! It’s all fun. So, today, I am recommending five scary movies for people who do not like scary movies. Which makes perfect sense, yes? YES. Okay, here we go. (All the source links will take you to IMDb.)

1. an american haunting

an american haunting

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Okay, so apparently this movie flopped big time, and I’m guessing it’s because it can make it onto a list like this. I REALLY liked this movie, because even though it has some of your typical ‘noises in the night’ tropes that a lot of scary movies have, the base storyline is heartbreakingly emotional. Besides a few moment of “oh noes, there’s scary shit going down”, the movie is ultimately an awesome one that isn’t so scary.

2. cry wolf

cry wolf

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OHMYGOSH. I still remember how incredibly amazing I thought this movie to be when I first watched it at a high school sleepover. I fell absolutely in love with it, and have since watched it numerous times. Cry Wolf is all up in the teenage boarding school drama and creep factor, and is just dripping in mystery. Yeah, there are a few deaths which some might say are gory, but the thrills are more “who the fuck is doing this?” than anything else. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND. (Don’t take any notice of that creepy AF cover. Totally misleading.)

3. dream house

dream house

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I was not expecting a lot from this movie. I almost put it back when I was renting it from my DVD rental place, because I had a feeling I’d seen it before (which I hadn’t). But I relented, and ended up loving it. Similar to An American Haunting, there are bumps in the night creepy moments, and a dude who you see outside of the house, but all in all Dream House is an emotional story that had me in tears. TEARS, I tell you. Obviously it can’t be too scary (I promise they were tears of sadness, and not fear).

4. the haunting in connecticut

the hanting in connecticut

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Hands down one of my all time favourite horror movies. This movie is precious. It stars one of my favourite actors, who just has a face that SCREAMS vulnerability, and begs you to wrap him in a blankey and protect him from the world, which I guess is why he’s so good in this role. The scary moments aren’t so big in this movie, but they are there. However, the main focus of this movie is what happened in the house in the past, and how it’s affecting my precious baby. Not to say there aren’t creepy moments, but they’re not ones that’ll keep you away from bathrooms.

5. passengers

passengers

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I thought this movie would be filled to the brim with murder and mayhem, but it’s not. It’s a thriller, rather than a horror, so there are no monsters ripping up people, but the thrills are little to none. Passengers is more of a mystery drama than anything else, but I won’t tell you why it still needs to be in the thriller section. Just trust me that it’s worth watching because there’s a greatly emotional storyline to it, and cute romance, to boot!

So there you have it. My five scary movie reommendations for people who do not like scary movies! If you’re one of those people, I really recommend giving these a go (starting off with Passengers and Dream House, and then moving on to the Haunting movies, and finally Cry Wolf), because they are 100% worth the watch.

Do you have any favourite scary movies? Or scary movie recs for people who don’t like scary movies (or who do)? Let me know!

Chiara / July 20, 2015 , Mon / films & music

To me, continuity is so important. I need it to make whatever I’m reading or watching enjoyable, because I need the story to be plausible and believable. This is more common in movies, though (especially of the horror variety), I must say.

A lot of the time, I feel like writers use the rule of: if it wasn’t mentioned, it wasn’t not part of the original story.

e.g. The Grudge 2, in which Karen (Sarah Michelle Gellar’s character) suddenly has a sister. In the first movie, Karen didn’t mention having a sister or not, so the above rule was used. In fact, this rule was again used in The Grudge 3, in which the grudge woman suddenly has a sister (repetitive much?).

e.g. 2. Jeepers Creepers 2 pretty much took every part of mythology mentioned in Jeepers Creepers, and shoved it down the toilet. The thing is the monster only needed to eat parts of humans (or a whole one, I guess) to create his human-esque body. When he gets the kid at the end of the first movie, bam. Done. The creature has what he needs. And then in #2, he’s still hunting people … uhm, okay. And then there’s also a scene where the head of the last kid he ate becomes his head and then morphs into the creature’s actual head, and every plausible idea the movie ever had just went completely out the door.

And sometimes that rule doesn’t even matter at all, we’re just gonna do whatever we want.

e.g. 3. When the Initiative closes down in season four of Buffy, a mysterious high-up military dude says “fill it with concrete”, and then lo and behold Buffy and Spike visit it in season seven. WHAT? It was filled with concrete, dammit.

e.g. 4. Juliette in Shatter Me (the series, rather than just the first book) underwent an extreme change of the romantic nature from the first book to the last. I mean, I’m glad it happened because I prefer the guy she ended up with, but it didn’t particularly make any sense to me. I mean, I know people can change their minds but woah was this unforeseen.

Anyway, I could keep giving examples, but I think you get what I mean. Continuity is integral because it keeps the all important aspects of plausibility and believability in the story. Just because something wasn’t mentioned doesn’t make that silence an opportunity for insertion of something else. It just looks pretty tacky, in my opinion.

Now, an example of really good continuity are the Step Up movies. I binge watched them recently, and there was a connection between each and every one. I was pretty amazed, because I have seen way too many multiple-movie series where continuity is ignore completely. But the sequel tied into the first one, which tied into the third, fourth, and fifth. It was so great, and I was super proud that the writers thought to include this because continuity-based thinkers like myself can just sit back and relax and watch the movie, rather than nitpick it the entire time.

I suppose one could say that this continuity issue is personal, but I can’t be the only one, can I? Can I? *looks around for other continuity-minded people*

Chiara / June 30, 2015 , Tue / films & music

If you know the reference in the title, I LOVE YOU.

Here I am, talking about horror movies, as promised in numerous places on this site. Because I watch more horror movies than I should probably admit, and I also have a lot of thoughts and feelings for these said horror movies (my babies).

Think back, my friend, to a recent horror movie (and I mean thriller or horror here, but I just say horror because it sounds better) that you watched. I am betting that 90% of you will have watched a horror movie with a female protagonist, probably either in her teenage years, or those years before 30. Am I right? Yes.

I can understand why horror movies are swamped with female protagonists. Because they elicit a kind of vulnerability, inability, and dependency. In short: they need to be saved because they’re female. Usually by a boyfriend, or a brother, or a father, or a male cop, or any male character in the movie.

Just because I understand it doesn’t mean that I agree with it, but that’s a discussion for another day. Today, I want to talk about the boys.

In a world where ~88% (I read that figure somewhere recently, but you probably shouldn’t quote me on it) of all major films consist of male protagonists – completely throwing this out there based on no research and just judgement of the many movies I spend my time watching – the remaining 12% probably comprises the horror movies that revolve around a female main character.

I’m pretty sick of it, to be honest. I loathe watching the character go through all this shit, only to be killed off (usually by an evil male or an entity [that is probably inherently male]) or saved by a male. I am 100% truly sick of it, because they all feel incredibly recycled. Rarely, if ever, do I find a horror movie with a capable female main character.

“Oh but they’re just horror movies, why are you reading so much into it?” is a thought that might cross someone’s mind when I speak of this, but the thing is: I love horror movies. I don’t want them just for the gore and creepiness. In fact, I loathe those horror movies where there’s senseless killing going on and there is no given reason for it. I need a why in my horror movies. My favourite horror movies are the ones that have a really great back story – two that I can think of are Dream House and An American Haunting.

A recent horror movie that I watched and loved as A Haunting in Connecticut, and it is actually the movie that inspired this post. Because the protagonist was a teenage boy (dying from cancer, which I thought was unfair. I mean, cancer and a haunted house? That is supremely cruel), and there was a really great back story.

I want more of these. I loved that when confronted with this scary as shit stuff that was happening to him, he just kind of tried to ignore it, but then he got increasingly freaked out as the scary shit increased in vehemence. It was good. He wasn’t all macho and capable. He wasn’t running around saving damsels in distress. He was a kid who was scared, and who was also very brave.

And he was a guy. I loved it! It turned every horror movie cliche on its head. A great story, no senseless killings and gore, and a male protagonist who wasn’t written in just to save a girl or be immune to everything that was going on.

So I want to hear it for the boys – I want more horror movies like this because we definitely need them. Let’s get rid of the poor pitiful female characters and introduce some capable ones, and also bring in some boys who have more depth to them than the saviour trope.

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