Christmas geek out

My brother rocks. This is why:

A Dragon Age action figure!!!!

I don’t care how much of a dork this makes me. Morrigan freaking rocks and you know it.

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas

Lights And all through the house / We all had insomnia and mindlessly contemplated our mortality.

Okay, just kidding. About the mortality part. Not about the insomnia part. I’ve been in Cape Town for just over three years now and I still can’t get used to the fact that the sun sets pretty much in the middle of the night here. I’m exhausted but too wired to sleep (hint – check that your painkillers are sans caffeine before taking them).

And so I’m in front of my laptop, which is probably not the ideal place to be while I should be sleeping. But I’m overtired and feeling rather melancholy – usually a dangerous combination.

I’m currently suffering from a severe case of “This time last year, the Geologist and I…” which is pretty fucking pathetic, actually, because it’s been months and months since he dumped me and I should be over it by now. But it’s Christmas, and Christmas should mean having someone in your life.

It’s a reminder of how deeply lonely I have been over the last few years, and of how I was so damn sure things were going to work out this time last year. We didn’t and they didn’t, and so I’m keeping my chin up and soldiering on and doing all the things that a healthy adult does… While that little voice in the back of my head keeps whispering, “This time last year…”

Raging atheist though I am, I love Christmas. You have no idea how much. I love the lights and the glitter and the baubles. I love the giving and the family vibe. I love gigantic lunches and extravagant desserts. I love it in the ancient Roman sense – the Saturnalia sense. If I could full-on celebrate it all week, I would.

We have always kinda done the traditional Christmas thing – the tree, the star, presents in the morning kinda thing – though we’ve generally kept religion out of it. The day reminds me so much of my dad – he was a total perfectionist about the tree, and one of my favourite stories is of how he spent an hour and a half in a toy store when I was younger picking out the perfect porcelain doll for me.

So whether you’re an angry atheist planning on spending the day locked in your lounge drinking cheap wine or a holy-but-especially-on-certain-significant-religious holidays kinda dude scheduled to spend all day in church tomorrow… Enjoy it. Hug your love ones a little tighter. Bring a little light into your life, whichever way you choose.

The adventure begins… The first Hobbit trailer

I’ve been looking forward to this movie for years. And years. And probably some more years on top of that. I read JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit as a child, and it’s remained one of my favourite novels since.

I was also, at some point in my teens, obsessed with Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Obsessed. I’ve seen the movies so often that I can definitely recite most of The Fellowship of the Ring as it plays. And probably a large chunk of The Return of the King too.

Anyway, you don’t care about my slightly unhealthy relationship with The Lord of the Rings. You’re here to see the trailer for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. I got chills, then squealed.

Watch here.

Firstly, Martin Freeman completely exceeded my expectations. Sir Ian McKellen (who returns as Gandalf) was right about one thing – he is Bilbo. (In my mind, at least.)

I do love the hark back to The Lord of the Rings – those people whose entire experience of Tolkien is centered in Jackson’s film will find this familiar and comforting, and the rabid fans of the books will be pretty much rabid no matter what. The inclusion of Howard Shore’s main Lord of the Rings Theme gives it a wonderful, nostalgic feel.

And while we don’t get to see as much of the dwarves as I would have liked, I suppose we’ve got a full year of promotional material to go to get to know them.

Bring on part one of The Hobbit. 

A Great First Look at ‘Gatsby’ [Picture]

Cliched thought it may be… I love the 1920’s, more than any other era. I loved the fashion, the make-up, the hair, the idea of the parties and the excess and the sudden realisation that hey, girls, we don’t need to hide. As an added bonus, I love  The Great Gatsby.

So, of course, I perked my ears up at the mention of a Leonardo DiCaprio-starring, Baz Luhrmann-directed version of F Scott Fitzgerald’s novel. And… I was torn. On one hand, a cast that includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire and Carey-freaking-Mulligan… Well now. Carey is perfect for Daisy, I can’t think of anybody better, and Leo will be great as the titular Gatsby. (I think he and Ryan Gosling are vying for the title of “Most Underrated Actor” of our generation, but that’s a discussion for a whole other time).

But Baz as director… Well, I won’t deny that it will be interesting. I loved Romeo + Juliet and Moulin Rouge! – they’re two of my favourite guilty-pleasure films – and I think that he will bring the exuberance of the period to the screen like nobody’s business. Will he be able to handle the subtle, complex, difficult emotions that run as an undercurrent to the film? That remains to be seen. He couldn’t in Australia – that’s all I’m saying.

In the meantime – a first look at the stars of The Great Gatsby. They all look superb. Can’t believe we have to wait until Christmas 2012 for this.

The Great Gatsby

Tobey Maguire, Carey Mulligan and Leonardo DiCaprio in 'The Great Gatsby'.