Giveaways | Tuesday Couch Potatoes

Blu-ray and DVD Giveaway

By on July 24, 2011

Been joining Tuesday Couch Potatoes for some time now and for this month, this should have been my 4th entry. However, the theme is Witchcraft so I’m skipping it. Deuteronomy 18 prohibits divination, sorcery, magic, spiritism and anything close to these, calling them abominable; which I take seriously for respect of God’s word. At times I may have watched instances of these in movies or read them in books but not deliberately. I take it that  watching movies (or reading books) with spiritualistic overtones may be viewed by most as ok but for me, it’s the same as supporting it when viewed or read. I listen to my conscience well, if I’m bothered watching a certain movie, I just stop then and there.

Anyway, Just About Anything, the blog hosting Tuesday Couch Potatoes is giving away a Blu-Ray and DVD of your choice. 😉

I’m joining in. We are moviebuffs and the hubby sees to it that we have copies of our favorite movies accessible with a click of the mouse. He setup a media-pc with all our favorite English and Japanese movies and animes too.

However, I really like to have a copy of Tangled (hints of magic there) as a gift to a friend. She hasn’t seen the movie until now and I kept babbling how nice the movie is especially the singing part. 🙂

Wanna join this giveaway? Please click the badge above.



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Kids' books | Roald Dahl

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator

By on July 20, 2011


Roald Dahl’s two masterpieces, considered to be children’s books were actually met with criticism before making it to mainstream readers’ nooks…or after.

The story is amusing, using kids as antagonists instead of adults – how kids could be annoying antagonists as adults. If you’ve watched the films Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1964) and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005) then you have an idea how the book goes. The movie followed closely how the story goes in the first book. the recent film featuring Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka went to broaden the background of Willy Wonka’s life and a bit of the second book.

It tells the story of Charlie Bucket, a kid from a poor family with three 80+ year-old grandparents and one 78 years. Charlie wins a golden ticket and gets into a famous chocolate factory tour…He gets to meet a bunch of rich kids with really different traits. In the process he gets to win the heart of the factory owner, Willy Wonka, he later on won the factory to himself.

I haven’t heard of a sequence for the film and it appears that the story ended when Charlie and his family’s house are already inside the factory. Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator tells the story of Charlie, Willy and Grandpa Joe’s travel from the factory to their house via the elevator. They fetched the family and traveled back to the factory but were accidentally ejected out of the earth’s atmosphere to space.

This is where the fantasy element of the book is widely tackled. This book dwells on the greediness or perhaps the want of adults to stay young — represented by the Wonka-Vite pills, something Wonka invented to make whoever eats it younger again. One of Charlie’s grandparents, Grandma Georgina being 78-years-old turned back to being “minus two” having eaten excessive amounts of pills.

Charlie and Wonka then journey in the Great Glass Elevator to Minusland –  a dark, gloomy region far beneath the surface of the Earth and where Wonka discovered the Vita-Wonk, a sprayable compound that makes people older. They were able to bring back the grandparents to their original age.

Related story about the movie here.

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Movies | Tuesday Couch Potatoes

A Beautiful Mind

By on July 18, 2011

If there’s one film I like Russel Crowe in, it would be Gladiator…nothing more. Then I watched A Beautiful Mind – mind changed.

The film follows the true story of John Nash, an American mathematician, Nobel Prize winner, whose works in game theory, differential geometry, and partial differential equations have provided insight into the forces that govern chance and events inside complex systems in daily life.

Nash begins developing paranoid schizophrenia and endures delusional episodes while painfully watching the loss and burden his condition brings on his wife and friends.


(clip:  Nash’s speech on winning the  Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics in 1994 although Nash didn’t really gave a speech in real life)

In the story, years after graduating, Nash runs into his former roommate while in Princeton, Charles, and meets Charles’ young niece Marcee (Vivien Cardone), whom he adores. Nash is invited to a secret Department of Defense facility in the Pentagon to crack a complex encryption of an enemy telecommunication. He is able to decipher the code mentally, to the astonishment of other codebreakers. He then met the mysterious William Parcher (Ed Harris), who belongs to the United States Department of Defense. Parcher observes Nash’s performance from above, while partially concealed behind a screen. Parcher gives Nash a new assignment to look for patterns in magazines and newspapers, ostensibly to thwart a Soviet plot. He must write a report of his findings and place them in a specified mailbox. After being chased by Soviet agents and an exchange of gunfire, Nash becomes increasingly paranoid and begins to behave erratically.

It all turns out to be part of his hallucinations.

Despite difficulties, Nash goes on to become a professor in his former college and honored by his fellow professors for his achievement in mathematics, and goes on to win the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics for his revolutionary work on game theory.

This movie is best loved by many for conveying the message or proving that psychiatrists are wrong about schizophrenia being a brain disease like Alzheimers and Parkinson’s.

Nash is now 83-years-old.

You can watch the film in full here, complete with subtitles of the language of your choice.


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Book List

Book List

By on July 6, 2011

This was a note from Facebook where I once got tagged. I had 45 books in bold here and so far, there’s nothing to add. I think I have to look for something new. 🙂


Have you read more than 6 of these books? The BBC believes most people will have read only 6 of the 100 books listed here.

Instructions: Copy this into your NOTES. Bold those books you’ve read in their entirety, italicize the ones you started but didn’t finish or read an excerpt.

1. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
 2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
 3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling (1st four books)
5 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
6 The Bible 
 7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens

 11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott 
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch – George Eliot

21 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House – Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams 
26 Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame

31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis 
34 Emma – Jane Austen
35 Persuasion – Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini (seen the film though)
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Berniere
39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne

41 Animal Farm – George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving
45 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding
50 Atonement – Ian McEwan

51 Life of Pi – Yann Martel
52 Dune – Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
62 Lolita  Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History – Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road – Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville

71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
72 Dracula – Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses – James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal – Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession – AS Byatt

81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple – Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web – EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton

91 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
94 Watership Down – Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet – William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo

How many would yours be?

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Disney Animation | Movies | Movies from Books | Tuesday Couch Potatoes


By on July 4, 2011

I saw myself falling in love with cartoon characters or Japanese drama actors a lot of times. The latest would be from my last post – Seiji from Whispers of the Heart and is closely followed by Flynn Rider, yes, the handsome thief in the movie Tangled or Rapunzel in layman’s terms.

I mean look at how perfectly they made the lips, nose and eyes. lol. I can’t make out what his nationality is but he surely looks handsome. As mentioned, Flynn (voiced by Zachary Levi) is a thief in the story and was running away from the kingdom guards and from his two former accomplices for taking their loot to himself. He hid himself in the tower where Rapunzel (voiced by Mandy Moore) is kept and their adventure begins there.

Flynn would have a change of heart in the course of the story and his life would also be assumed to have a different ending after being tangled with Rapunzel’s own. 🙂 – Literally bringing to life the cliche, it takes two to be tangled…err to tango.

I really enjoy this film that I think I’ve been watching it almost everyday. 😀 And because Flynn was voiced by Zachary Levi – I just can’t help it. I love the guy. He was too nerdy in Alvin and the Chipmunks and Chuck but he was awesome in this film even if it’s just the voice and who knew he could sing? I love this movie’s theme song “I See the Light” sang by Mandy and Zachary, the song was nominated at the Oscars and performed by the two, I was quite disappointed though that it lost over Toy Story’s. 🙁

All in all, a magical story right from the Grimm Brothers’ book – full of action and from the female character too! Full of comedy, drama and romance…I just don’t like the hint of rebelliousness I picked off from Rapunzel triggered by the role of Gothel, her stepmom. If a mom is like her, kids would surely rebel and the “mothers know best” belief will be laughed upon. 🙁

Great animation, truly fit for a 50th Disney installment – can’t wait for a follow-up film. 😉
Click here to hear the theme song.


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Grimm Brothers | Rapunzel

Rapunzel (Brothers Grimm)

By on July 1, 2011


I’ve never seen a real Rapunzel plant…I doubt that I would. Just like the plant, the original story written by the Grimm Brothers entitled Rapunzel has been elusive. Perhaps, I haven’t search the libraries here much, would love to read it in German too.

The original is, as you’ve read is grim (no pun intended), not intended for kids but the version that we know now has been revised a lot that it has lost the grim and darkness of the plot.

It is after all intended now for kids – girls who are thought that a knight in shining armor would come and save them when they are in distress. lol. Well, I’ve lived that belief too when I was little, haven’t we all?

This is why I like the twist they gave the Rapunzel movie, she was not portrayed as a damsel in distress as most of the other princesses were. Actually a bit rebellious if I may say. I heard the producers say in an interview that they wanted to create a character that kids can look up to, both for male and female that is.

It was also a good move that they didn’t include the part in the version where Rapunzel gets pregnant. – That was the first version though.

Have you watched the movie yet? I did and I truly love it, will write about it soon.

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