Saturday, 19 January 2013

Warner Brothers - Now is Good Review

I'd not heard of Now is good when Warner Brothers offered it to me for review and neither had I heard of Before I Die, the book it is based on but when I read the plot synopsis I thought why not? - I'll give it a go.

And I liked it, I wondered if I would. As it started Dh spotted it was a BBC film and groaned, informing me they were often slow. I then made the mistake of googling some reviews to see what people thought and most stuff I came across was not very positive but I'm glad I make up my own mind.

It's a really sweet film, it won't blow you away but I found it very watchable and it captured me. I did feel as if I was taking a journey with Tessa, the 17 year old central character, from her failed attempts to lose her virginity to the first snatched hug on a bus with next door neighbour Adam, right through to the pain of her Dad realising it would not be long before he lost her.

Tessa found out four years ago that she has leukaemia, chemotherapy is just making her feel more ill so she decides to enjoy the rest or her life and make the most of it. A bucket list is compiled and Tessa sets about doing all the thing a teenager might try for the first time, drinks, drugs, sex and of course love.

When Tessa learns her cancer has spread and the doctor urges her 'to do the things she wants to do' she asks how long she has left and it is clear the answer is not long.  It is a hard pill to swallow when someone is only 17 and after this we see some of the best scenes where Tessa and her dad go trough a power struggle.

Dakota Fanning and Paddy Considine

I found Paddy Considine excellent as her Dad and Dakota Fanning pulled off some brilliant scenes as a hurt, scared and abrasive teenager with a lot of attitude. Jeremy Irvine is very easy on the eye and is convincing as a young man in love who has to grow up very quickly.

The film has a bit of everything - touching love scenes, cringe-worthy teenage antics, a harrowing scene, where Tessa has a horrendous pumping nose bleed and her pathetic mother has no idea what to do and even the odd joke to break the tension.

I'm glad I watched Now is good and I'd happily recommend it. Now is Good is released 21st January 2013, you can pre-order it from Amazon for £11.99.

Run time - 99 minutes
Rating - 12
The DVD also comes with a UV copy to be able to download for use on your tablet

Take a look at the trailer and see if you fancy.......

Disclosure:  I received this DVD for the purposes of this review.  I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Review: Next sole survivor shoes

One of my favourite tines of the year is immediately after Christmas, I love the thrill of the January sales.  Roll back five or ten years ago and it was literally the pinnacle of my year - get Christmas over and go shopping with my Mum. I am glad to say that my addiction has subsided with age and now my sale shopping is just part of a suite of enjoyable activities over the festive period.

I think any avid shopper will know that Next has probably the best sale of all the high street stores. I love going along and bagging a bargain and when my children were younger I just shoped twice a year for their clothes and that was always in the Next sale. At half price their goods are phenomenal value and wash so well, then better still they resell on ebay and hold a good value.  You have to make the most of your money once you have kids after all.

I am not one of those who turn up at 4am on Boxing Day to queue for 6am entry and then fill a huige bag in a frenzy to grab the best half price deal but I will admit to you that I was there at 2pm on Boxing Day for a sneaky hour out with my Mum after we had cleared up from dinner.  The kids were happy playing with Daddy and Grandad so why not?  There was not too much I needed to buy this year, the kids are all kitted out and dh is never fussed about new things. So my shopping was just for me and boy did I pick up some lovely bargains.

I suffer with footache if I stand or walk for too long, so generally I have to wear flat and very comfortable shoes but seeing as I am not even 40 yet (yes, yes I know it is this year) I want to look stylish and not old before my time. The main shops I end up in for shoes are Clarks and M&S but this time Next did me really proud.  I have not come across their Sole Surivor brand before but after just a couple of weeks wear I am a convert.

My bargain hunter Mum was looking at the shoes (in the hope of picking some up for herself) when she showed me a pair of maroon leather pumps and commented they were nice, and yes they were realy nice, cute little patent shoes and mock snake skin. Not boring, nor average but with a low rubber heel and supersoft, deep cushioning inside. Beautful, the right size and reduced from £36 to 14, how could I say no to that?

Imagine my thrill when I spotted a pair of black patent pumps with a big bow, again in the right size and from the same range and yes with that bargain £14 price tag. I have proudly been wearing my two new pairs of Next pumps every day for the last couple of weeks and had so many comments about how nice they are. I'm also pleased to report that they are as comfortable as I hoped they would be.

I'll definately be back to Next for when I need to purchase some shoes again, these ones look set to last me for a long time yet though.

How about you?  Did you pick up any great sale bargains?

Disclosure:  I received a £40 voucher for Next for the purposes of this review.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Review: Mattel's Molehill Mania Children's Game

I have to say that a simple and quick game is always appreciated in our house, whilst it is wonderful to sit down and have an hour game of Junior Monopoly it is not always what my 5 year old twins want.  Fast and furious is quite often the order of the day and Mole Hill Mania fits this bill perfectly.

Mattel sent this game for my 5 year old twins to review and we have all been having fun, gameplay takes literally about 5-10 minutes and their big brother JJ (who is 9) has shown himself to be a champion, much to the distain of Miss E.  Basically you have a little plastic molehill that you fill with coloured moles and then you have two mallets each and the 2 players whack the moles out of their molehill and then use the mallets to gobble them up, first one to 6 moles collected is the winner.
There is also a slightly harder version of the game where the two players choose a colour and then have to collect their own colour moles and the sixth mole has to be the only red one. I was chuckling away watching the kids scrabbling around the floor for their moles. Playing it Christmas day with presents and paper still around make for such fun in searching.
Molehill mania is a hit in our house and has become a valuable addition to the family games shelves. I have tried really hard but I cannot think of a con for this game, so I’ll leave you withal the plus points.
Plus points
·        Practically no setting up and very easy for a small child

·        Sturdy plastic toy

·        No batteries required

·        Reasonable price, I found it for £14.97 at Tesco (goof for collecting/ spending the clubcard points!)

·        Really quick and simple game to play

Suitable for age 4 upwards.
I'll leave you with Miss E's face when JJ won yet again!  Yes I did have to step in and play with her in a less competitive way....

Disclosure: We were sent this toy free of charge by Mattel for the purposes of this review. I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.