Patriot’s Day Review

Title: Patriot’s Day

Rating: PG-13

Runtime: 2 hours and 13 minutes

Release Date: January 13th 2017

Grade: A-

Reviewed By: AIDAN GLENDON

 

Patriot’s Day is drama/action movie about the Boston Marathon Bombing of April 2013. It tells the story of the tragic event, tracing the lives of those involved immediately before and during the bombings, and the manhunt following the act of terrorism. The story is based off of the accounts of all involved parties.

 

The movie stays very true to the events of the bombings and the aftermath, even cutting in real security camera footage. The biggest diversion from the true events are Mark Wahlberg’s and Michelle Monaghan’s characters. They are surrogates, representing all of the members of the Boston Police Department during the events. The cast for this movie is perfect. Every actor looks overwhelmingly similar to their real life counterpart. No one in the cast feels overused, but there are some who feel underused, although it is understandable that at times, their situation was not important to the real life story.

 

Examining the movie from purely a movie standpoint (as if the events hadn’t happened), it is one of the most exciting movies ever made. There were parts where I could barely breathe in my seat and could feel my heart pounding in my chest. But, knowing that all of this really happened made it that much more devastating and nerve-wracking. There were events that I didn’t know occurred. After looking them up online, I found that the events portrayed in the film were extremely close to reality.

 

The movie’s one major flaw is that in the beginning, the focus shifts too much (I mean before the bombings). In an effort to introduce all of the main characters, the movie overexerts its exposition before getting into the actual story. But, it is a flaw to be overlooked, considering the final product.

 

This movie has plenty of heart, probably because Mark Wahlberg, Boston born and raised, had lots of say. And this movie showcases exactly what the tragic events of April 2013 show: Boston is strong. Not many other cities could’ve survived an event like this, but Boston shows just how great humanity can be, especially in the face of terror.

 

In a month crowded with too many bad sequels (Resident Evil, Underworld) and cheap money grabs (The Bye Bye Man), this is truly a movie to see. It is gripping, it is emotional, and it is real. And it is worth every cent.

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La La Land Review

By ARIANA RICH

Sebastian, role played by Ryan Gosling, and Mia, role played by Emma Stone, are two characters who both aspire to do what they love, although they face many hardships.  Mia, whose hopes are to become a successful actress, is subjected to rejection, and Sebastian, who strives to keep the love of Jazz music alive, barely manages to make a cent.  

 

As they begin to make their way into each other’s lives and their successes begin to peak, they are faced with decisions that eat away at their growing love.  The two must decide whether they should go their separate ways or reject life changing opportunities to remain with each other.  
La La Land is truly inspiring and simply makes your heart sing. It is an extraordinary film that is definitely worth a trip to the movies!

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“Hold Up” Beyoncé is Pregnant

By GABBRIELLA MANISCALCO

Beyoncé posted a photo on February 1st, 2016 and broke the internet with the news of her pregnancy of twins with husband Jay Z.

 

The internet went crazy when the news was revealed, showing the power a musical icon can have on Pop Culture. The multi-award winning singer, songwriter and actress posted a photo on Instagram Wednesday with a baby bump and the caption, “We would like to share our love and happiness. We have been blessed two times over. We are incredibly grateful that our family will be growing by two, and we thank you for your well wishes. The Carters.”

 

When the Carters revealed that they will be adding two new editions to their family, Beyonce’s fans all over the world responded and made the Instagram photo the most liked photo ever on Instagram with over 9.4 million likes and counting, beating out pop singer Selena Gomez who currently held the Instagram title.

 

An hour after Beconcé’s big reveal, there were more than half a million tweets about her pregnancy. Anthony Minda, Westlake student and diehard Beyoncé fan, was shocked when he saw the post: “I was shaking and did not know what was happening because she’s the best person ever. I was in shock,” whereas Peter Psaltakis, another Westlake student, was not surprised that the couple was expecting.

 

Many people are excited that Beyoncé and Jay Z will welcome two siblings for their famous five year old daughter, Blue Ivy Carter, including Julia Remo of Westlake High School who said, “I am so excited that Beyoncé is having twins, I love Blue Ivy and I cannot wait to see the new babies.”
It is unknown how far along Beyoncé is in her pregnancy, and some worry if she’ll still be able to headline the Coachella music festival in April. The baby news blew up the internet this week, and now, the world is patiently waiting for the arrival of Beyoncé’s twins.

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What Will Be the Popular Sale of the Holiday Season?

By JULIA REMO

With the holiday season coming into full swing the week following Thanksgiving, stores prepared for, “an estimated 137.4 million people [that] plan to or are considering shopping during Thanksgiving weekend,” according to NRF’s annual survey conducted by Prosper Insights.

The real question of the season is: what will be the most popular gift?

The Target and Wal-Mart price war also has people questioning which store to purchase their gifts. Target is “focus[ing] more on deals and value than it did in 2015,” Phil Wahba from Fortune.com suggests.

Clothing and accessories, as usual, will be the popular sales this holiday season along with an increase in technology.

According to Business Wire, the technology gift given most this year will be wireless headphones, which is “driven in part by tech industry movement toward wireless audio devices.” Apple’s new IPhone 7 will be another popular gift this year.

Regardless of whether you wrap up clothes, accessories or technologies this holiday season, remember to bring the holiday cheer.

Works Cited

“November 2016 Consumer Survey.” National Retail Federation, nrf.com/resources/consumer-data/holiday-headquarters.

“Record-Breaking Holidays Ahead for Tech: More Consumers Than Ever Plan to Give Technology Gifts This Season, Says CTA.” Business Wire, www.businesswire.com/news/home/20161011006247/en/Record-Breaking-Holidays-Tech-Consumers-Plan-Give-Technology.

Wahba, Phil. “Target Unveils a Christmas Plan to Respond to Walmart’s Price War.” Fortune, fortune.com/2016/10/25/target-holiday-season-walmart/.

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5 Best Shows of Fall 2016

By AIDAN GLENDON

As the holidays approach, many people will be spending time with their loved ones. However, many will be looking to escape their loved ones, and find some respite in the form of a small-screen binge. So, without further ado, here are the 5 best new shows to binge over your holiday break:

5: The Good Place

The Good Place is a comedy that revolves around a case of mistaken identity: Eleanor Shellstrop is welcomed into the good place, the place where only the best of the best go after their time on Earth has come to an end, only Eleanor is not the best of the best; someone made a huge mistake. The comedy explores what a theoretical afterlife could be like, without singling in on a single religion, but rather a non-denominational paradise. The Good Place is hailed by critics as one of the most original of this fall’s new broadcast comedies.

4: No Tomorrow

No Tomorrow is a quirky rom-com that is centered around a shy, risk-averse Evie Covington who meets the free-spirited Xavier Holiday in the midst of a romantic crisis. What sets it apart from the average TV rom-com is Xavier’s theory that the world is going to end, and his mission to live every day to the fullest. Together, they both learn to open themselves up to new experiences, while falling in love.

3. This is Us

This is Us is a drama centered around 4 people who all share the same birthday, and how their lives are interconnected. Essentially, this show is Game of Thrones for regular people. But the world building in the first episode alone justifies the shows huge popularity. It is one of the few shows on television that is centered not on superheroes, or robots, but just people. The first episode alone feels special. Also, the plot twist at the end of the first episode will make the viewer need to continue watching.

2. Designated Survivor

Designated Survivor is a political thriller about Thomas Kirkman, a low level cabinet member who becomes the President of the United States after a terrorist attack kills most of the government during the State of the Union Address. This show is based off of the very real, of well-known concept of a designated survivor, and explores both the rebuilding of the government and the investigation into the terror attack that wiped out the government. The show sees Kiiefer Sutherland’s return to TV after 9 years of 24, which alone makes the show worth watching.

  1. Westworld

Westworld is not only the best new show of the fall, but the best show of the year. Based off of the movie of the same name, it is essentially Jurassic Park, but with robots instead of dinosaurs. The theme park is a western theme experience where the wealthiest guests can come and take part in the adventures written by the people behind the scenes…or people who create their own. The show is so excellent because it makes the viewer care about the AI (Artificial Intelligence) characters just as much as the organic humans. It raises interesting questions about the future of technology and the human condition. 8 episodes in, the show has not slowed down and continues to be one of the best hours on television. With the budget it currently has, HBO is grooming the Game of Thrones’ successor, and this show deserves it. A flawless cast, stellar scripting, and an interesting plot make this show one not to be missed.

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Christmas Hits the Stores before Thanksgiving

By ARIANA RICH

Nevermind Thanksgiving, stores began gearing up for the Christmas holiday season by putting out decorations before Halloween even happened!

Stores like Kmart, Walmart, Target, and Costco feel that by putting out holiday goodies early, people can avoid the holiday rush by doing all their holiday shopping early.

In order to avoid the stress associated with holiday shopping, some people like getting it done early in order to avoid the mad rush.  

However, Nordstrom seems to be holding off on the Christmas decorations until after Thanksgiving. The store put up a sign which reads: “We won’t be decking our halls until Friday, November 27. Why? Well, we just like the idea of celebrating one holiday at a time.”

Most people feel that by setting up for holidays early, they are wishing away the year. By celebrating one holiday at time, people are able to enjoy each one and look forward to the next.

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Westchester Burger Review

By LAUREN SCHNEIDER

Have you ever wanted to go out to dinner but just couldn’t seem to decide on a restaurant? Somewhere that served quality food, with excellent service, but also suited the preferences of everyone in your party? Well, now picking a location for a night out to eat just got a whole lot easier.

Westchester Burger is a four star rated, on the rise, restaurant that is located in four local, quick and easy to access, locations: White Plains, Mount Kisco, Rye Brook and Stamford. They are open everyday of the week, with a menu ranging from healthy salads to hearty entrées and their famous Build Your Own Burger.

However, their well-known burgers are anything but ordinary. With the build your own option, Westchester Burger lets you choose from a range of meat sizes and types, along with a wide variety of condiments and buns. The end result is always juicy, fresh and, of course, tasty.

Once you place your order, it is barely a few minutes before you have your food in front of you. The attentive and friendly waiters only add to the impeccable service that Westchester Burger provides for its customers.

The atmosphere is one that you find only in the highest ranked of restaurants. With its layout split between restaurant and bar, the type of customers that Westchester Burger attracts checks every box. At one table you can see a family spending quality, memorable time together, while at another you can find a group of coworkers chatting after a day of work. The environment is inviting and relaxing, and never dull, especially with the soft background sound of classy but trendy music.

So next time you and your family or group of friends can’t decide on a place to eat, go to Westchester Burger. You won’t be disappointed.

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Letrons: robot or vehicle?

By SEAN MARTIN

Letvision a company based in Turkey has made real-life Transformers, or as close as possible.

The cars dubbed “Letrons” are remote-controlled cars that transform from a BMW into a functioning robot, according to the company’s website. As of September 2016, there are 4 different models of Letrons: Bizmut; Argon; W0lfram; and Tantal. The only aspects that differs them from one another is color and design of robot; they are all made from the same base car.

When the car is in its robot form, the head and neck can move 120 degrees in any direction. It also has camera integration which allows them to “perform speech and movement abilities in real time,” according to the site. The robots are also able to move their arms, wrists, and fingers, but are not yet able to move their legs. However, Letvision has said walking functionality will be added if “reasonable funding is provided for a new research and development project.”

In its car form, it has a working steering wheel, as well as security sensors in the front and rear of the car. However the car is not drivable in traffic because its remote control functionality. Letvision has also said that this might change in future models because it already has an electric motor.

Even though the cars are for sale, in order to buy one the buyer must “project and their reasons for use” in accordance to Letvision’s undefined criteria.

Works Cited:

Letrons. Letvision, 2016. http://www.letrons.com/index_eng.html. Accessed 13 Oct. 2016.

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10 Cloverfield Lane Review

Title: 10 Cloverfield Lane

Rating: PG-13

Grade: A-

Runtime: 1 hour and 43 minutes

Release Date: March 11, 2016

Reviewed By: AIDAN GLENDON

10 Cloverfield Lane is a drama/horror/mystery that is set in the same world as the original Cloverfield, which quickly became a cult classic. The producers wanted to expand on the world they created and did it by creating a movie that is completely separate and has a different form the original. For instance, Cloverfield is a found footage movie, while its successor is not. The ‘sequel’ is about a woman who ends up in a car crash and is rescued by a man who brings her to his bunker. When she wakes up, he tells her that the world as they know it has ended and that the three people in that bunker are the only survivors.

The movie is built from a very small cast. Mary Elizabeth Winstead stars as Michelle, the victim of a car crash and John Goodman portrays Howard, the man who rescues her. Even though Mary Elizabeth Winstead is the star, John Goodman is the top-billed cast member, and for good reason: this movie showcases some of his best acting. Howard is one of the most morally ambiguous characters in movie history. Something in your gut makes you question whether or not you trust him, yet you can’t deny that his actions make sense. He is both a crazed villain and a brilliant hero. IF you see the movie twice, you could watch it once and pick out everything that makes him seem evil, or untrustworthy; but watching a second time, you could see that he is a good man doing the right thing. He essentially portrays two different characters at the same time. Bradley Cooper also has an insignificant cameo. John Gallagher Jr. rounds out the cast playing Emmett, the third survivor in the bunker. His character is important to the story, but serves as more of a buffer between the two main characters and is relatively undeveloped.

The film’s script is central to the movie. All of the dialogue is important, as it always comes back. Nearly every line in the film has a payoff later on. The script is so delicate, that if one character’s lines were removed, the entire outcome of the movie may be changed.

My final note about the film is that the last 10 minutes differ greatly from the rest of the movie. It essentially turns a drama movie into a sci-fi movie. For those who are familiar with the original source, the genre-flip is expected and beautify executed. The movie caters to a very specific audience, but allows outsiders the chance to enjoy the low-budget spectacle. 10 Cloverfield Lane outshines its predecessor in almost every way, making it a must-see for sci-fi fans.

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Adult Coloring Books

By MICHELLE BARBERO

Adult coloring books have become the craze over the past couple of years. Unlike the coloring books from our childhoods, adult coloring books consist of more intricate designs, patterns and shapes, ranging from mandalas or nature scenes to cityscapes or animals. The coloring book mark is sure to create one that will engage all personal interests.

But, adult coloring books are not just a pastime. It has been proven that coloring in these books actually can be linked to a person’s wellness. Mood, physical health, and stress levels are all affected by the act of coloring. According to USA Today’s article, “Why the Latest Coloring-Book Craze Can Be Good for You,” art therapist Lacy Mucklow shares that “these activities engage your hands as well as your mind and your focus,” Nancy Monson reports.

According to Monson, in 2006, a study co-sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and several federal health agencies, proved that “adults 65 or older who engaged in creative activities such as making jewelry, painting or writing had better overall health, made fewer visits to the doctor, used less medication and had fewer health problems than non-crafters.”

Putting the pencils, pens, markers, or crayons to paper actually helps quiet the mind and focuses it on accomplishing a task so that people are no longer stressing out about work or school or any other conflicts that result in stress.

Join in on the fun and reduce stress by picking up this old habit.

 

Works Cited

Monson, Nancy. "Why the Latest Coloring-Book Craze Can Be Good for You." USA Today.

N.p., 14 Nov. 2015. Web.

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