I haven’t done a movie review in so long. I’ve become so lazy with my viewing habits lately, simply because by the time I get home I can’t be bothered to concentrate on much so I usually just stick on a show I’ve seen so many times before. But I was scrolling through my phone the other day and found a screenshot of the movie Modern Life Is Rubbish – so I decided there and then to watch it.

Modern Life Is Rubbish is your typical story of a boy trying to make it as a rockstar whilst also trying to keep his relationship afloat. Liam (Josh Whitehouse) and Natalie (Freya Mavor) meet at university and bond over their passion for music – old records, classic rock bands such as Blur etc. They’re young and innocent and fall in love, which makes it all that harder as Liam struggles to get signed and Natalie struggles to make ends meet on one income in their flat.

Watching this movie made me feel young again and reminded me of those all-consuming relationships when you have when you’re younger; it’s you both against the world no matter how hard things get and you really believe love can conquer all. It was a nice reminder of that feeling; of course now I have grown up and I know this is no longer the case but personally I will always have a little bit of that innocence still deep down inside me and that belief!

Though the movie was corny in parts and – let’s face it – the storyline has been done a million times before – it was still a good watch. The ace soundtrack (consisting of bands such as Stereophonics, The 1975 and The Libertines) gives the movie a cooler vibe and stops it being too corny. I’d describe it as a UK version of Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist.

The casting is great for an indie and below the radar production. Josh Whitehouse, of course, is already known for his role in Poldark and plays the role of brooding and emotional wannabe rockstar well. His character was likeable, but at times I struggled to sympathise with him, for example in the scene where he’s drunk and angry at his situation and causes a massive scene at an important event for Natalie. I found it hard to understand the reasoning behind this – but looking back to when I was younger, I can maybe understand that we’ve all been in situations where our frustration – and being under the influence – has us do stupid things.

Formidable Joy | Movie Review | Modern Life Is Rubbish | Entertainment

His inability to even accept modern music was quite unbelievable, however – just because you upgrade to an iPod or an iPhone doesn’t mean you have to give up records or replace them!

Freya Mavor played her part exceptionally well and was very believable in her role as a wide-eyed uni student who quickly grows up and almost leaves her boyfriend in the dust. She was extremely relatable and likeable.

However, overall, I did struggle to understand why the couple even found the need to break up in the first place – the movie didn’t broadcast many of their arguments or fights and it seemed that in the end they only broke up because of their money worries! It seemed clear throughout that their feelings for each other never wavered..but of course, this all made a good storyline (and one of the cutest romantic gestures in a movie in a long time!).

I did not understand the oddball character of the band’s manager at all. At times he seemed corny and at others just really oddball but not in a good way.

Overall, though the movie wasn’t necessarily deep or thought-provoking – I really enjoyed Modern Life Is Rubbish. It’s the type of movie I’d watch a few times, especially due to its awesome soundtrack.

Have you seen Modern Life Is Rubbish? Let me know your thoughts!

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Going out for Halloween isn’t for everyone. Despite the fact that I’m doing a few cool events/reviews, I’m not actually going to any parties this year – and who wants to, when Halloween falls on a school night? That being said, my second favourite thing to do on Halloween is to order a takeaway and just watch all the scary films.

It’s the only time I feel brave enough to watch them alone. Luckily, Netflix is the way to go this October as there is SO MUCH scary content on there right now.

Is anyone else absolutely loving the fact that Netflix has added their own ‘Netflix and Chills’ section?! Here’s what you should be watching all throughout this month and especially on Halloween…

Formidable Joy | Halloween | 5 shows to watch on Netflix this Halloween | Halloween | Netflix | Entertainment | Netflix and Chill | The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina | The Haunting of Hill House | Derren Brown: Sacrifice | Haunted | Riverdale

THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE
Quite a few people have been recommending this (I’ve got at least five people I know hooked) so you know it’s good. Episodes are long however – and you need to pay attention – so this is the type of show that needs to be started now in the run-up to Halloween. It sounds like your typical haunted house story but it’s not. It follows the Crain family as they move into a huge mansion in the hopes of ‘doing it up’ (as I would say) and selling it on. Of course, slowly but surely odd things seem to happen but what is interesting about this show is that it follows a non-linear timeline as we check in with the family both before their escape from the house and the way it haunts them all afterwards. It’s set in these two timelines – for the most part – and will keep you gripped as you try to understand what happened. The drama of the show also makes you feel and sympathise with the characters and there’s plenty of twists and turns too. The scares are spot on – from the few and far between jump scares that get you just when the tension is built enough, to the plethora of weird ghosts that will disturb you to no end. The floating man freaked the f*ck outta me. Be warned though: you’ll be tempted to binge-watch this in one entire evening.

RIVERDALE, SEASON THREE
Yes, it’s kinda corny (did you see my tweets about the first episode of the new series?! I mean c’mon, someone tried to get Archie to shank someone in prison…with a SPOON) but the new series is seemingly focused around cults and weird going-on’s. It won’t exactly get your heart pounding (except for Archie topless and the return of Jughead of course *deep sigh*), but if you like your scares a little more subtle and adventurous, this is the perfect show to watch week by week. Plus there are rumours that’ll be crossing over with The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, since it’s set in the same universe and all…

THE CHILLING ADVENTURES OF SABRINA 
One to look forward to – just three more days! – The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is a seriously spooky reboot/take on the original show we used to watch as teenagers. And I mean spooky. The trailer alone features what looks like blood rituals, creepy visions, demons,  levitation and of course lots of magic. I honestly thought this would be kind of lightly spooky but it seems a lot darker than I originally imagined, so I for one can’t wait for it to drop on Friday. Plus, when doing my research, I noticed that one of the characters is pansexual. Kudos for getting with the times Netflix!

HAUNTED
If you like your scares a little more…real then Haunted is the show for you. This new show is part documentary part supernatural drama and focuses on real people sitting down to talk about their real encounters with the supernatural. Their events are then re-created – kind of different, no? This six-part series consists of short 20-minute episodes too, so it’s perfect to dip in and out of…if you get too scared.

DERREN BROWN: SACRIFICE
The legend is back! I still remember sitting down one October and watching the series where he hypnotized a man into believing the zombie apocalypse had begun..this time around though, Derren Brown will aim to change a man’s prejudiced views, to the extent that the man will have to decide between taking a bullet for a complete stranger or saving his own life. Maybe not horror, but anything from Derren Brown will certainly mess with your mind.

And, whilst writing this post, I realized every single thing I’ve written here is a series and I haven’t mentioned any movies..so that’ll be another blog post coming up soon.

What show are you going to be watching in the run-up to Halloween? Let me know!

 

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My knowledge of podcasts is expanding! I now know how to download and listen to full episodes on Spotify on the phone I use simply for music in my car (as opposed to constantly running out of signal using the actual podcast app), I know where to look for decent podcasts…and subsequently I’ve finally expanded my podcast interest to shows other than My Dad Wrote A Porno.

My current favourites (and not just for Halloween) are of course anything scary/spooky. You simply can’t go wrong with a podcast that creeps you out a little, especially driving home during these long winter nights…here are my favourites.

Formidable Joy | Halloween | Podcasts | 5 seriously spooky podcasts to listen to this October | My Favourite Murder | The Last Podcast on the Left | The No Sleep Podcast | Alice Isn't Dead | And That's Why We Drink

MY FAVOURITE MURDER
Upon my first listen of this podcast – by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark – I was an addict and ended up listening to five epsiodes in a row. The show is really easily listening. Both Karen and Georgia are really easy to listen to in a relaxed and chatty manner and I love how they love grusome murder and have absolutely no apologies for it. Their first ever episode covered the case of Jon Benet Ramsey – a personal favourite of mine – but I still learned more about the case!

THE LAST PODCAST ON THE LEFT
This is probably my least favourite on this list but I had to include it as it is a classic. It did take me a while to get into it though as at first all it seemed like to me was a podcast filled with inside jokes, rude comments and rowdy men ha! However, I stuck with it and now I like it a lot more than I used to. Plus, I like that it features Creepypasta’s too – so the creepy episodes are really varied. My only issue is that I cannot play any episodes earlier than Episode 34 on both Spotify and the podcast app so I’ll have to find another way to catch up!

THE NO SLEEP PODCAST
A different type of podcast here – a horror podcast but that features original horror stories. Even though they’re not real, each episode is still creepy enough to send shivers down your spine – and it’s even won awards. If you prefer your scares a little more fictional this Halloween, this podcast is for you.

ALICE ISN’T DEAD
From the same team behind Welcome to Night Vale, Alice Isn’t Dead is a multiple episode horror fiction story about a trucker who travels across America for her wife – Alice – she had assumed was dead. I’m only one episode in so far but it’s gripping – I’ve had to really hold back from bingelistening to tons of episodes in one sitting. It’s perfect for fans of Serial too.

AND THAT’S WHY WE DRINK
Another podcast launched by successful women, which I love of course! And That’s Why We Drink is similar to My Favourite Murder but focuses on more than just murders – including all sorts of paranormal subjects. It’s also easy listening and very capitvating, and I love how Christine and Em really do their research. For example, I’d read a lot about the Winchester Mystery House but their first episode revealed so much more about the subject that I had no idea about. They really know their stuff.

Are you a fan of any of the above podcasts? Can you recommend any others to me? Let me know!

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Look, I know I should be out doing things in this nice weather yeah but it is JUST TOO HOT. This hot weather – paired with a recent promotion at work – has left me almost permanently exhausted. Most days I come home from work, have dinner, put my fan on and just lie in bed watching TV until I fall asleep. Because it’s just too hot to move.

Anyway. Here’s some TV shows I’ve been loving lately.

Formidable Joy | UK Lifestyle Blog | Entertainment | 5 more TV shows I'm loving lately | Roswell | Final Space | Daredevil | Orange Is The New Black | American Horror Story

ROSWELL
Yes, that corny teen alien show from the 90s. It’s entirely unrealistic and extremely corny, but who honestly didn’t have Max and Liz couple goals?! It’s all about aliens that arrived on earth during the famous Roswell crash, then wake up years later and must blend in as high school students – whilst keeping their alien identities secret. It’s surprisingly addictive, and has the best theme song ever (Dido’s Here With Me). They’ve actually just announced a total reboot, but no one will ever replace the gorgeous Jason Behr as Max. I actually used to date someone who looked just like him!

ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK
To be honest, I don’t like Orange Is The New Black as much as I used to because it’s not as shocking/new anymore and I struggle to think of where it can go. However, each time a new season comes out I watch it just to see how things pan out and each season is always a little better than I expected. I’m just watching the last five or so episodes of season five at the moment – ready to be up to speed for when season six is released tomorrow. I absolutely love the characters on the show though and love how they’re all so unique and different from one another – it’s really interesting hearing about each of their stories and backgrounds.

FINAL SPACE
Final Space is my new addiction, filling a Rick and Morty shaped hole in my heart. It’s created by Youtube comedian Olan Rogers (y’know, the ‘It’s a Monday guy) and is HILARIOUS. It follows the adventures of Gary, a prisoner astronaut who actually thinks he’s the captain of the ship and is obsessed with cookies. He also has the most adorable sidekick, a planet destroying alien named Mooncake. MOONCAKE IS BASICALLY ME AS A GIRLFRIEND.

DAREDEVIL
I’ve actually already seen all of Daredevil’s two seasons in the past but have yet to watch any of the spinoffs such as Jessica Jones (even though I have a total girl crush on Krysten Ritter) or Luke Cage. I absolutely loved the character of The Punisher in season two of Daredevil and have been itching to watch his spin off show ever since it dropped. But first I need to re-watch and catch up to speed with Daredevil. Charlie Cox is so handsome and the show itself is just really intriguing, so I’m enjoying re-watching it, especially as I’m picking up more this time around.

AMERICAN HORROR STORY
Another show that’s not new! I was an avid fan of AHS for the first couple of seasons then got a little bored. I love the idea behind Roanake, so I’m currently catching up with the season before: Hotel. I’m not sure why as they’re not specifically related, but still. I couldn’t get into Freak Show but Hotel seems to have grabbed my attention. Then, after Roanoke, there’s Cult to watch, then, eventually when it’s released, Apocalypse. So far, my favourite season is still Murder House or Asylum though!

What TV shows are you currently addicted to right now? Let me know!

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It might sound boring, but I’ve settled into my own little routine since moving into my own place. I do try and mix it up a bit but on a weekday I tend to get in from work, have dinner, play some Xbox then settle down to watch an episode or two of some of my favourite shows on Netflix.

Although it takes me a while to jump onto the bandwagon of what’s trending, I also tend to have quite a varied taste in TV so thought I’d share with you all some series I’m addicted to right now.

Formidable Joy | UK Lifestyle Blog | TV | Lifestyle | 5 Netflix series I'm addicted to right now | Neflix | 3% | Riverdale | Friday Night Dinner | iZombie | Ghost Wars

3%
The second series of this Brazilian dystopian thriller has just dropped, meaning it’s not too far gone to catch up on but there’s enough episodes to watch to keep you entertained for a good few weeks. The show is set in the future and is based around the fact that the world is divided in two; a poor and rundown side and a ‘better’ side called The Offshore. Each year, those who are twenty years old have the opportunity to go through ‘the process’ to reach The Offshore, but only 3% make it. It’s a bit like The Hunger Games meets Lost and will draw you in, especially as you start to wonder if you could pass the tests of the process yourself!

RIVERDALE
Riverdale is ever so corny at points but it gets away with it given the fact that it’s a teen drama. I am a 28 year old who is addicted to this show and I have no shame – it’s hard to not end up liking this show. The first series is based around the disappearance of high schooler Jason Blossom and from the get go you realize this show which includes everything you’d expect from a teen drama (parties, sex, drinking etc), it’s actually got a mysterious twist too!

FRIDAY NIGHT DINNER
I’ve been a fan of this show since it first aired but being that season five has just began airing on TV, I’ve been re-watching old episodes and they’re just as hilarious as ever. The premise is simple: every Friday night, brothers Adam (Simon Bird) and Jonny (Tom Rosenthal) return home for a Shabbat dinner (aka a Friday night dinner) with their parents. Hilarity often ensues with the two brothers playing pranks on each other, their slightly deaf and often daft father and their somewhat other bearing mother – and an annoying neighbour from next door too. The episodes are short and sweet and I’ve got friends and even my dad watching now too.

IZOMBIE
It’s taken me a while to get into IZombie, which is unlike me considering it’s based on an uber cool comic book and is all about zombies. It’s probably because their idea of how zombies came about is more or less the same thing that happens in my novel..grr. Even so, it’s a lighthearted take on the genre though the show has plenty of gore and mostly takes place in a morgue. Main character Liv (played by Rose McIver) gets turned into a zombie and to help stop her cravings for brains, she begins to work in a morgue. Only eating the brains of the dead gives her flashbacks of their lives, which means she quickly becomes involved in solving crimes. It’s lighthearted but with a twist – so don’t knock it until you try it.

GHOST WARS
I really like this supernatural show. It’s not as scary as I thought it would be but it has its moments. It’s quite unique in regards to anything else on Netflix right now. It’s based around a remote Alaskan town that has problems with the paranormal. Outcast Roman Mercer (Avan Jogia) – who can communicate with the dead – must try and help, despite pretty much the whole town thinking he’s a freak. The show is gripping – and gory at times – but isn’t too heavy either.

Have you seen any of these shows? Do you have any recommendations? Let me know!

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