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Weekly Photo Challenge: Satisfaction

I am a relatively simple person with a common interest on book and traveling. Buying books has been a guilty pleasure for me because I feel some kind of satisfaction everytime I do it, and the pleasure even doubled once I finish reading the books. It does not always happen linearly since I have less time to read lately due to my work and other things, but for sure it will be part of my life which will always bring small happiness in my heart ☺️

Traveling is just amazing. I enjoyed the experience and new knowledge which I got when I visited new places and met new people. After hiatus for a while, I think it’s about time for me to pack my bag and go wandering again, this time with my significant other 😄

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Review: Dunkirk


Year: 2017
Director: Christopher Nolan
Writer: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Fionn Whitehead, Damien Bonnard, Aneurin Barnard, Tom Hardy

This movie refers to Battle of Dunkirk, a military operation that took place in Dunkirk (Dunkerque), France, during the Second World War. The battle was fought between the Allies and Nazi Germany. As part of the Battle of France on the Western Front, the Battle of Dunkirk was the defence and evacuation of British and Allied forces in Europe from 26 May to 4 June 1940 (wikipedia).

I have been a fan of Christopher Nolan’s work ever since The Dark Knight trilogy and Inception, hence I was expecting a lot from Dunkirk. Well, I was not disappointed at all! In fact, I really really like this movie! It is brilliant in all aspects: the storyline, the cast, the cinematography, the music; each piece fits beautifully and creates a beautiful mosaics for audiences.

The movie started with a story of Tommy (Fionn Whitehead), a young British soldier who tried to leave Dunkirk. Trapped in the island with other 400,000 devastated soldiers who also wanted to go home, Tommy had to find a way to ensure he would not be part of those unlucky troops who might be left behind. Trying his luck, he quickly picked up a stretcher to bring a wounded soldier to medical boat, hoping he could sail away with the medical team. Unfortunately it didn’t work and forced Tommy to find another way to save himself. While Tommy was struggling in the land, in the skies above, Spitfire pilots Farrier (Tom Hardy) and Collins (Jack Lowden) took off to Dunkirk to protect people in the island by shooting down enemy planes. Limited fuel and wave of enemy planes did not make the job easy for both of them. In the sea, Mr. Dawson (Mike Rylance) together with his son, Pete and his friend George, headed off to Dunkirk in his boat to save as many British soldiers they could get. They encountered a shell-shocked soldier on a wrecked ship and took him aboard. When the soldier discovered that Dawson was sailing for Dunkirk, he tried to take control of the boat and accidentally pushed George down to the lower deck. The latter got severe blow to the head and lost his sight. All three events seemed not related at all, until the truth appeared in the middle of the movie.  

It was brilliant. The fact that the movie tells a story of three different events in parallel actually blows my mind. In the beginning I thought everything happens in a sequence manner, which means one event after another. However in the middle of the movie, I (and I believe everyone else) noticed the oddity of the flow when similar event happens again, but this time from different person’s point of view. That’s when I started questioning if those events were actually happened in different timeline and somehow linked to each other. This so much reminds me to Inception in which Nolan was playing with the concept of dream and reality, which linked back again to time. Seems the concept of “playing with time” is one of Nolan’s favorite, which in a way can be classifed as his signature on his movies. 

I love the cinematography and the sound of this movie. Everything was just perfect, not less and not too much. Sometimes in a war movie, I feel like the sound was dominating a bit too much (which I expect) to give more impact to the audiences. Watching Dunkirk, I  still feel the same impact with less attack to my eardrums. The casts are great, each one of them played a very convincing role which pushed the story moving forward. Fionn Whitehead was basically Tommy in my eyes: a young soldier who was trying to leave Dunkirk by doing anything he could. I feel like I am part of his “virtual” team: supporting him along the way and feeling nervous everytime he tried to do something to gain his freedom. I could totally relate to Mike Rylance’s role as a dad who wanted to do something in behalf of his soldier son who passed away in the war. Mr. Dawson’s story was told in a simple yet effective manner which makes me symphatized even more to him. Surprisingly, I love Jack Lowden’s Collins character, whom I find somehow interesting, though he only appeared in less than a 30% portion of the movie. 

Overall it was a very good and entertaining movie which for sure lasts in my mind. Nolan obviously had a job well done. No doubt it gets my 5 out of 5 stars rate. 

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Review: “Spiderman Homecoming”

Title: Spiderman Homecoming
Director: Jon Watts
Writers: Jonathan Goldstein (screenplay), John Francis Daley (screenplay)
Stars: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr.

Having had a fighting experience with The Avengers, Peter Parker a.k.a Spiderman (Tom Holland) returned home with excitement to face another adventure with the superheroes. With a mentor of Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), Peter expected to do more action and prove himself as a decent superhero who can be a part of Avengers. When days passing by with no call from Stark to join the Avengers, the so-not-patient Peter decided to find himself a significant crime to handle and show to Stark that he is someone to consider as superhero and not a your everyday teenager. That’s when Vulture (Michael Keaton) and his gang, who got their power from alien stones (Chitauri), emerged as new and dangerous villain. Will Peter prove that he is good enough as a superhero to save the day?

Spiderman Homecoming gave me a quite different vibe compared to previous Spiderman movies. I feel like it was more family friendly, or teenagers friendly to be precise. Though (of course) there were fighting scenes, they were relatively safe, meaning no excessive blood or dismembered body part (maybe I am exaggerating, sorry 😅) or any kind of wound and cut that you usually saw after a tough fight between a superhero and a villain. Even the last fight between Spiderman and Vulture was not too harsh, proven when Peter could still stand after being beaten up just couple of minutes before. Now this can be good or bad depending on someone’s preference. For me it’s somehow okay-ish, means I can accept it but would not mind to have bolder fighting scenes since I like action movies. 

Other things that I like about the movie was the humor and the character. I feel like the humor was sufficient in term of amount and also placed properly along the movie. Peter’s character as a teenager who was curious, excited, naive and ambitious, was believable and made me fell in love. I think Tom Holland did a good job, and honestly, he is my favorite Peter Parker so far from all Spiderman movies. Ned as Peter’s best friend was also funny and fit the role perfectly. 

Overall it was a funny and very entertaining movie to watch. I am looking forward to see the next movie of Spiderman 🙂 

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Bridge

I guess it becomes some kind of habit to leave my blog for a month and catching up with photo challenge and few entries *cough*. I keep reminding myself to write regularly but when I am occupied with work, I would always have an excuse not to blog. Maybe I should think it differently to keep me motivated: if I have time to work, why don’t I have time to write? Makes sense, right? 😅😂

Anyway, catching up with last week’s theme of photo challenge: Bridge, I am sharing some pictures that I like from my past trips. Enjoy 🙂 

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Review: “Wonder Woman”

Wonder Woman

Title: Wonder Woman
Year: 2017
Director: Patty Jenkins 
Writers: Allan Heinberg, Zack Snyder
Stars: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright

And here it is, ladies and gentlemen: Wonder Woman the movie! One of the most anticipated superheroes film from DC universe this year with beautiful Gal Gadot playing the main role of Diana, princess of Amazon, who will be later known better as Wonder Woman. I recall to like the Wonder Women series when I was much younger with Diana played by Lynda Carter.

WW series

Diana (Gal Gadot) was born and raised in Themyscira, hidden island of Amazon warrior women. Understanding that their role as Amazon people was to protect humankind, Diana wanted to train herself to be a warrior, however her mom, Queen Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen), had been very protective and restricted her from any warrior training. Diana then decided to train in secret with her aunt, General Antiope (Robin Wright). When the two are discovered by Hippolyta, Antiope convinced her sister to allow Diana’s training to continue.

One day, a plane crashed off on the coastal area of Themyscira. The hidden island was soon invaded by German soldiers who were chasing pilot of the crashed plane, Captain Steve Trevor (Chris Pine). The Amazon warriors attacked the German soldiers to protect their island, however, Antiope died to protect Diana. Outraged, Hippolyta arrested and interrogated Steve who later confessed that he was an allied spy of US and British who wanted to do something to stop the ongoing war (it was set at World War I). His job was to collect information of German power and strategy, however he ended up stealing a notebook with valuable information from the Spanish chief chemist Isabel Maru. Dr. Maru was working under instruction of General Ludendorff to create a deadliest form of gas to attack German’s opponents.

Being naïve as she was, with her belief that Ares, god of war, was responsible for the war, Diana decided to go with Steve back to London to find and destroy Ares. She took the sword which was shown by her mother as the ultimate weapon to kill Ares. When both of them arrived in London, they met Sir Patrick Morgan (David Thewlis), who was trying to negotiate a peace agreement with Germany. Later they found out that Germans planned to release the deadly gas at the warfront. Though forbidden by his commanders, Steve decided to go and stop preventing the gas from being released with the help of Diana, and his colleagues: Sameer, Charlie and Chief. Did they manage to do it?

In general, I like this movie. I think it has enough balance of action, drama, romance and comedy inside it. I found some scenes were properly funny, for example when Diana ate ice cream for the first time and said, “It is wonderful. You should be proud.” Or the scene when he saw Steve for the first time and said, “You’re a man..”, and Steve replied, “Yeah… I mean… do I not look like one?”. Lol. I laughed myself loud at that simple phrase.

I also like Gal Gadot and Chris Pine’s performance as Diana and Steve. They did a good job in embracing their characters and their chemistry felt quite real for me. If I should give one critic was only on their relationship development because I think it was a bit too fast. Of course, it is a superheroes movie, so perhaps action should anyway take the biggest portion of the movie. Nevertheless, I think a little bit more intimacy between these two main characters would not hurt. It would increase the intensity of their relationship development and make their love to each other felt more real for me.

Other than that, I love the graphics of the movie a lot. Themyscira was beautifully pictured, reminded me on beautiful coastal area of Greece or Italy. The action scenes were smoothly executed, though of course, you will find a bit exaggeration here and there. It is, anyway, a superheroes movie.

Kudos need to be given to Petty Jenkins as the movie director. I think she has cleverly established this movie as a complete package, which offers you different kind of emotion in one go. I actually just realized that she also directed “The Killing”, a TV series with dark atmosphere which I fond of. I hope this will be a major breakthrough for her to even create more interesting movies in the future.

Overall, I think I can understand why this movie became one of the highest grossing movie only weeks after released. It is entertaining and gives you different flavors which I believe you will appreciate. This movie makes me curious to see Justice League which will come later in the end of the year. Well done.

Rating: 4 from 5 stars

Wonder Woman team

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(Short) Birthday Reflection

So, as the title implies, today (June 17) is my birthday! 🙂

My birthday

Yes, I am that kind of person who loves to celebrate my own birthday, as much as I love celebrating others. I know there is nothing really special about birthday, considering that you are, well, getting old (and maybe a bit wiser, lol). But at least for me, birthday is a time to have a quick stop (sometimes a bit too quick) and revisit again my life, to see what I have done, what goals I have achieved, and what other things I still want to accomplish in my life. It does not sounds as “heavy” as it is, really. It is more like a peek on my continuous life.

To start with, I can easily state that 2017 is a life-changing-year for me. I just got married about 1.5 months ago (yay!) with one of the nicest person I have ever known. It is huge for me because for the last couple of years, I have been dealing with my frustration on finding the right partner in life. When I thought that I would just go with the flow and kind of accepting whatever fate I would have, this major event came and change my life completely. (I will share story of my wedding preparation and our instant-love-story in separate post, just because I want to, hehe 😉 ).

Not only in personal life, another change also happened in my professional life. I have been promoted to a higher position with a team of four. Simultaneously, I had to relocate from Jakarta to Sukorejo (Pandaan), East Java. When I first received the news from my bosses, I was having mixed feelings. I was happy because I have been moving forward steadily with my career path in the company (which is truly a bless!), plus I would go back to my hometown in Surabaya and live together with my husband. However this also meant I had to say goodbye to my old team and friends who will stay in Jakarta or move to another place. I had to leave my sister and her family as well, whom I have lived with for the last three years.

Changes are never easy, especially if it impacts your life significantly. These last six months have been quite challenging for me. In Q1, I was overwhelmed with all wedding preparation. I was very lucky that Rendy (my hubby) was actively supporting me by coordinating with the vendors and our families to ensure that the preparation went smoothly. While the wedding-stress was gradually decreasing, I gained another concern which was linked to my job: short transition process into my new role and responsibility. Everything had happened so fast, I barely had time to think if I had been doing all these changes properly, or if I should have done it differently to get better result.

In the end, I think I would say that, even though I could have done better in facing all these changes in the first six months of 2017, I managed to go through it pretty smoothly. I don’t think this would have happened without the support from my hubby, my families and friends. A new chapter of my life has just been starting, and going to have a long run in the future. I am excited, and looking forward to see how it goes (and experience it, of course!) together with my partner in life (and crime, lol). With that feeling, I will pause my reflection here, and continue in the next peek-on-my-life session. Until then!