iOS 11 has continued Apple’s iPhone and iPad’s evolution with improvements here are there, but one aspect that is notoriously difficult to crack and where Apple might still be beaten by foes at Amazon or Google is in Voice Recognition.
Siri may not always get it right, but he/she does fortunately have a sense of humour, and fear not cinephiles, we have our own special corner in her silicon heart. Next time you’re having a chat with your iOS device, try some of these famous movie inspired prompts:
Siri, I am your father
Beam me up Scotty
Are you Her?
What is Inception about?
Open the pod bay door
Blue pill or the red one?
Do you follow the three laws of robotics?
When is the world going to end?
And inevitably for Game of Thrones fans:
And Is winter coming?
Does a Lannister always pay his debts?
we’d like to thank MacWorld for these!
Joe Grabinski has been documenting some of the most hilarious Amazon Film Reviews and tweeting them to his “Amazon Movie Reviews” account. Clearly not to be taken too seriously, the mind still boggles at how BROAD our individual views and opinions of films we know and mostly love are:
The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
The Shining (1980)
The Force Awakens (2015)
Monsters, Inc. (2001)
The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Die Hard (1988)
Pitch Perfect (2012)
A Bug’s Life (1998)
Star Wars (1977)
Magic Mike (2012)
The Passion of the Christ (2004)
Happy Feet (2006)
Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol (2011)
March of the Penguins (2005)
The world famous and world’s LARGEST arts festival hosted in Edinburgh each August produces some cracking comedic performances. In no particular order, here are some of our favorites from 2017.
“I broke up with my first girlfriend because she didn’t believe in me. Which was ridiculous, because she was the imaginary one.” Ben Fogg
“If I had a pound for every time someone accused me of having body dysmorphia I’d have enough to buy the new nose I need.” Lauren Pattison
“I went to a really rough inner-city school. The kind where chances of being bullied grew exponentially every time you use the word ‘exponentially’”. Aatif Nawaz
“I once took to the stage as Hamlet, which really annoyed the rest of the cast of Mamma Mia.” Thunderbards
“My parents have been married 40 years. I don’t know how they do it, they make it look so hard.” Carmen Lynch
“Whenever someone says ‘I don’t believe in coincidences’. I say ‘Oh my god! Me neither!’” Alasdair Beckett-King
“My uncle told me it doesn’t matter what you achieve in life, as long as you’re happy and you can afford your own bed. That’s the last thing he told me on his deathchair.” Glenn Moore
“It’s so weird that Americans say ‘eggplant’ when they’re called chickens.” Ian Smith
“I like to think the guy who invented the umbrella was going to call it the ‘brella’ but he hesitated.” Andy Field
“I was a lazy kid. When I was twelve my parents entered me in a national apathy contest. I came second. I wasn’t that bothered. The kid that beat me didn’t even turn up.” Ben Fogg
“The key to a happy marriage is in a bowl with a bunch of other keys.” Tom Houghton
“A lot of older people wonder if there will be life after death. There is, of course – it just won’t involve them.” Lee Nelson
And finally, this year’s favorite joke of all (according to the Dave’s Funniest Joke of the Fridge Award) from Ken Cheng: “I’m not a fan of the new pound coin, but then again, I hate all change.”
Cinema has countless scenes which have inspired future generations of filmmakers – ie your students. This compilation will distract us all from North Korea for long enough to remember what a rich and amazing archive of filmmaking is out there to continue that inspiration!
Quickclass needed a new ~1 minute explainer of our platform and its many benefits to Teachers and Students to help Accelerate Learning. Through funky and nibble Production House MondoTV, we found George O’Regan, who produced the GEM you can now see on our public homepage. In his own words, George answered a few questions to reflect on his shoot and the lessons he learned. Its beautiful insight onto the trials and opportunities of young filmmakers – which YOUR students will do well to learn from! So, in George’s own words….
- How did you first have contact with Ben, the Producer from MondoTV?
My friend Lucas and I were waiting on a train platform with a pile of film kit; we were heading off to Brighton to shoot a scene for our Year 13 ‘Short Film’ unit. A chatty American guy wearing a denim jacket with an embroidered dragon design on the back came up to us and asked what we were shooting. We talked for a little while and found out about MondoTV, his Shoreditch-based production company. This was of course Ben.
We ended up getting on the same train as him and before he got off at Gatwick, probably to jet off to somewhere exotic, he offered us our first job with the company. Lucas shot two events for him, and I edited both videos…incredibly slowly. Perhaps during my interactions with Ben on these projects he realised that I could have more potential as a Director than as an Editor. And here we are.
- How much freedom did you have to create the treatment?
An unusual amount. In my previous experiences of online advertising I had been quite restricted by brand guidelines, executive decisions and even to already fully formed ideas. Beyond a couple of reference clips and suggestions from Ben (MondoTV Producer) and StJohn (Quickclass Founder) I had free reign over the treatment. Recently I had stopped suggesting risky ideas to brands as they would always say “no” and play it safe, there wasn’t even a point, but St John didn’t have any fear of being bored and reassured me that I could be as creative as I liked. The freedom was refreshing and undoubtedly led to a more stand-out video.
- Were there any difficulties in casting for the film?
Once the call was out on Casting Call Pro we had over 200 applications within 24 hours for the role of Andy. I tried to make the job sound as fun as possible (which it was) and left out any specific physical traits to attract a larger number of applicants in case anyone surprised us and completely changed how we saw Andy. In the end we picked the very expressive Teifi who was the perfect fit for Andy and looked just as we’d imagined. All in all, a very stress free casting process.
- How many shots did you have for the film? Was this typical for a 1 day shoot?
40 shots, 4 hours, 10 shots per hour. Sounds doable right? However, we needed to set up and pack down in that time, which left us with about 3 hours of actual shooting. When you add that to the fact that we were shooting with 8 extras, 4 crew and 1 actor as well as a dolly and crane in a tiny meeting room on one of the hottest days of the year, we weren’t left with many reasons to relax. Long story short, we didn’t finish on time, but thanks to some fantastic schmoozing from the production manager, Cisco, we secured an extra hour in the room, within budget, and wrapped with a happy cast and crew.
- Any unexpected difficulties on the day? Any problems you were unable to overcome?
Because we had so little time on location, everything was meticulously planned. It did take a little longer than expected, hence the extra hour of shooting, but it did go very smoothly.
- How long did the edit take? Anything you found was missing?
The edit only took about a week on and off. Again, because we had planned well, we weren’t missing anything in the edit. However, we did re-shoot a few bits that could have been improved, such as Andy’s computer – we made it a lot more messy.
- How was directing the Voice Over? Where there any unforeseen difficulties there?
StJohn’s is the voice that you hear in the film. However, as I live in London and StJohn in Amsterdam we had a considerable barrier to cross.StJohn sourced a good microphone from a friend and we set up a Skype call. After a couple of tests where I listened back to the audio we decided to jump in and record the voice over. It took a couple of hours to record a take of each section that we, or I, was happy with. Unfortunately, my experimental method of recording with the microphone in a cardboard box sounded awful when mixed in with the properly recorded sound effects and music. This meant that we had to re-record everything, stood in a copying cupboard, when StJohn came to London the following week and the day before it was ‘premiered’ at the BFI Media Conference.
- Any other lessons you’d like to share from making this film?
Never record a voice over from inside a cardboard box. Never.
Summer, right? Long bright evenings, frisbee in the park, barbecues with friends….
Except… except, we know the British summer often has different ideas about what it’s supposed to be. Our North Atlantic maritime climate means we’re just as likely to be running for shelter or huddling under an umbrella!
Still, for the cinephiles among us this isn’t necessarily ever a bad thing, as we’ll trade a soggy park for a comfy cinema seat any day. As luck would have it, there’s a rich offering of new releases this summer to keep us entertained (and dry!)
Here’s the Top 10 we’re most excited about this ‘summer’.
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 – Marvel’s surprise hit from 2014 has spawned a laugh-out-loud hilarious and action-packed sequel which simultaneously manages to explore many deeper aspects of family rifts.
- Snatched – Allowing us not only to sneer at the naivety of the hapless American tourist totally unprepared for a South American vacation (let alone kidnapping), but first outing with 70’s screen idol Goldie Hawn, practically this century!
- Wonder Woman – Not Marvel, but DC this time comes up trumps with this surprisingly refreshing and female-friendly superhero movie which actually shows some hope for the DC comic universe being constructed to compete with Marvel’s string of hits. After the horrendous Batman vs Superman, this could be exactly what they, and we the audience hoped for!
- The Big Sick – Combining traditional family interracial tensions with love, heartache and serious illness. This drama is funny and heart wrenching at the same time. Fresh and worth checking out.
- Lady MacBeth – Katherine, played stunningly by Florence Pugh is trapped in a cold marriage. Rebellion and lust lead to murder and tragedy in one of the brightest slow burns of the summer.
- Atomic Blonde – Another powerful female leading character, also adopted from a comic book, but trading a magic lasso for knee-high boots and secret-agent ass-kicking. Charlize Theron stars as a British spy Lorraine Broughton whose love-interest is a beautiful French counterpart – how refreshing!
- A Ghost Story – One of the summer’s most provocative, thoughtful and SLOW films involves Casey Affleck with a sheet over his head as his character’s ghost haunts the house he once inhabited in life, as his partner moves out and moves on.
- Maudie – Ethan Hawke (we know, we know) puts in a promising performance as a miner in 1930’s Nova Scotia with Sally Hawkins as the arthritic housekeeper who hones her skills as an artists and becomes accepted and celebrated by the local community.
- Okja – Ever fallen in love with a pig? How about a genetically modified giant pig? This unclassifiable film from South Korean Bong Joon-ho is a delight through and through.
- Baby Driver – We’ve left the best (in our eyes) to last here. Edgar Wright takes a well-worn genre of the bank heist gang and turns it on its head with the downright coolest film of the summer, no competition. Just see it.
Not known for their serious reporting, the Daily Mash nevertheless may have hit on the real reason why this latest Tory government seems so determined to drive the country… and our publicly funded education system, off a cliff.
Do you think the following is a bit much like fiction imitating fact… or the other way around?
“THE Conservative party has confirmed it is opposed, on both a theoretical and practical level, to solving any of the problems faced by modern Britain.
Tory chairman Sir Patrick McLoughlin admitted that serious issues facing housing, education, and social care could be solved, but that it would be wrong to do so.
He continued: “We could build houses, of course we could, but encouraging private development by offering tax breaks which will increase profits while not building houses is much more the Tory way.
“Likewise, instead of investing in education we’re making those sums available to anyone nominally running an academy while paying themselves an enormous salary and, via a company owned by their wife, annual consultants’ fees.
“What people fail to understand is that spending taxpayers’ money directly on issues which matter to taxpayers is repugnant and 1950s, even if it works.
“Far better to have faith in the free market to do it all for us. We may not live through it, but at least we’ll die pure.”
When fact and satire are almost indistinguishable, should we be worried? :S
The ‘so called experts’ of social media are calling it as such: whilst the Tories spent millions targeting ‘the youf’ with online ads, the stuff getting noticed was the content the youf themselves where making for each other, generally dissing the Tories.
Typically missing the point of the medium, a banner ad declaring that what the country really needs is Strong and Stable leadership is going to have an impossibly hard time competing with ANY of the following… (a worthy sample of the burst of digital creativity that made is laugh our way though this election.)
So did the Meme cause the biggest political upset since… well… last year?
You decide if the following would have swayed YOUR vote! (If it needed swaying.)
The US midTerm elections are 18 months away, and as long as nuclear war doesn’t break out before then, then just like you, we’ll continue biting nails and praying that the Donald continues to be at least partially contained…
In the meantime, we can highly recommend healthy doses of cinematic diversions to relieve the tension…. As if by perfectly-timed magic (or the fact that some gems take longer to come to our notice) the Guardian newspaper went and and quizzed some of the UK’s funniest and finest living comedians for THEIR nominations of great comedic masterpieces.
Luckily, the inclusion of Borat, Best in Show and Life of Brian make up for a noticeable lack of Withnail and I. Any Best Of List worth reading wouldn’t be complete without someone feeling unrecognised and ending up having an argument about it.
There are almost too many gems here to count. So, let’s laugh ourselves to November 2018, it’ll beat crying.
The Game to Movie Curse may have been a supernatural jinx on any attempt to turn a video game into a feature film… OR maybe it was just the result of game-to-movie productions never stopping to pick up a STORY along the way. In either case, from Mario Bros to Assassin’s Creed via Angry Birds, the genre is littered with less than critically acclaimed cinematic outings. (despite Resident Evil delighting Zombie fans everywhere…)
This recent Onion piece offers us light-hearted insight into how some screenwriters must struggle with the next Game Adaptation request