Monday, 29 September 2008

heeeeey

meh, sorry for the two week wait, but I've been uberly busy with UCAS stuff...and yeah. Plus, all of you have gone off to uni, making me feel pissy and young. So yeah, good few weeks basically...
I still can't be assed to write anything, so I'm gonna leave you with this:

I love these films far too much

Monday, 15 September 2008

63. The Apartment (1960)

Cue Jack Lemmon's best performance. A wonderful and touching romantic drama, with just the right amount of typical Billy Wilder humour thrown in...this film is appealing on all levels - the script is smart and witty, it's beautifully shot, and the acting is first class. Jack Lemmon plays C.C Baxter, an employee trying to make it up the work ladder by lending out his apartment to his superiors for any clandestine affairs. Everything seems to be going swimmingly (bar the hate from his neighbours and the odd vicious cold) when he falls in love with one of the girls his boss is seeing, Fran Kubelik (played by Shirley MacLaine). Jack Lemmon plays the bumbling C. C Baxter with sensitivity and humour, and Shirley MacLaine is lovely, vulnerable and has great chemistry with Jack. All in all, a wonderful Billy Wilder classic. Speaking of, I'm going to download Sunset Blvd.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Oh the joys...

apparantly I shouldn't talk about Amelie in my personal statement because it's become too "mainstream" and Oxford will not approve.

OK....


anyone know any good French films the rest of the world doesn't like? *rolls eyes*
German films are also acceptable. Probably not Lola Rennt though (although it is my favourite) because I'm guessing everyone knows about that too.
this oxbridge thing is confusing...

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

The Highwayman

Me loves this poem ♥

The Highwayman - Alfred Noyes

PART ONE
I
THE wind was a torrent of darkness among the gusty trees,
The moon was a ghostly galleon tossed upon cloudy seas,
The road was a ribbon of moonlight over the purple moor,
And the highwayman came riding—
Riding—riding—
The highwayman came riding, up to the old inn-door.
II

He'd a French cocked-hat on his forehead, a bunch of lace at his chin,
A coat of the claret velvet, and breeches of brown doe-skin; T
hey fitted with never a wrinkle: his boots were up to the thigh!
And he rode with a jewelled twinkle,
His pistol butts a-twinkle,
His rapier hilt a-twinkle, under the jewelled sky.
III

Over the cobbles he clattered and clashed in the dark inn-yard,
And he tapped with his whip on the shutters, but all was locked and barred;
He whistled a tune to the window, and who should be waiting there
But the landlord's black-eyed daughter,
Bess, the landlord's daughter,
Plaiting a dark red love-knot into her long black hair.
IV

And dark in the dark old inn-yard a stable-wicket creaked
Where Tim the ostler listened; his face was white and peaked;
His eyes were hollows of madness, his hair like mouldy hay,
But he loved the landlord's daughter,
The landlord's red-lipped daughter,
Dumb as a dog he listened, and he heard the robber say—
V

"One kiss, my bonny sweetheart, I'm after a prize to-night,
But I shall be back with the yellow gold before the morning light;
Yet, if they press me sharply, and harry me through the day,
Then look for me by moonlight,
Watch for me by moonlight, I
'll come to thee by moonlight, though hell should bar the way."
VI

He rose upright in the stirrups; he scarce could reach her hand,
But she loosened her hair i' the casement! His face burnt like a brand
As the black cascade of perfume came tumbling over his breast;
And he kissed its waves in the moonlight,
(Oh, sweet, black waves in the moonlight!)
Then he tugged at his rein in the moonlight, and galloped away to the West.

PART TWO

I

He did not come in the dawning; he did not come at noon;
And out o' the tawny sunset, before the rise o' the moon,
When the road was a gypsy's ribbon, looping the purple moor,
A red-coat troop came marching—
Marching—marching—
King George's men came matching, up to the old inn-door.

II

They said no word to the landlord, they drank his ale instead,
But they gagged his daughter and bound her to the foot of her narrow bed;
Two of them knelt at her casement, with muskets at their side!
There was death at every window;
And hell at one dark window;
For Bess could see, through her casement, the road that he would ride.
III

They had tied her up to attention, with many a sniggering jest;
They had bound a musket beside her, with the barrel beneath her breast!
"Now, keep good watch!" and they kissed her.
She heard the dead man say—
Look for me by moonlight;
Watch for me by moonlight;
I'll come to thee by moonlight, though hell should bar the way!
IV

She twisted her hands behind her; but all the knots held good!
She writhed her hands till her fingers were wet with sweat or blood!
They stretched and strained in the darkness, and the hours crawled by like years,
Till, now, on the stroke of midnight,
Cold, on the stroke of midnight,
The tip of one finger touched it! The trigger at least was hers!
V

The tip of one finger touched it; she strove no more for the rest!
Up, she stood up to attention, with the barrel beneath her breast,
She would not risk their hearing; she would not strive again;
For the road lay bare in the moonlight;
Blank and bare in the moonlight;
And the blood of her veins in the moonlight throbbed to her love's refrain .
VI

Tlot-tlot; tlot-tlot! Had they heard it? The horse-hoofs ringing clear;
Tlot-tlot, tlot-tlot, in the distance? Were they deaf that they did not hear?
Down the ribbon of moonlight, over the brow of the hill,
The highwayman came riding,
Riding, riding!
The red-coats looked to their priming! She stood up, straight and still!
VII

Tlot-tlot, in the frosty silence! Tlot-tlot, in the echoing night!
Nearer he came and nearer! Her face was like a light!
Her eyes grew wide for a moment; she drew one last deep breath,
Then her finger moved in the moonlight,
Her musket shattered the moonlight,
Shattered her breast in the moonlight and warned him—with her death.
VIII

He turned; he spurred to the West; he did not know who stood
Bowed, with her head o'er the musket, drenched with her own red blood!
Not till the dawn he heard it, his face grew grey to hear
How Bess, the landlord's daughter,
The landlord's black-eyed daughter,
Had watched for her love in the moonlight, and died in the darkness there.
IX

Back, he spurred like a madman, shrieking a curse to the sky,
With the white road smoking behind him and his rapier brandished high!
Blood-red were his spurs i' the golden noon; wine-red was his velvet coat,
When they shot him down on the highway,
Down like a dog on the highway,
And he lay in his blood on the highway, with the bunch of lace at his throat.

* * * * * *
X

And still of a winter's night, they say, when the wind is in the trees,
When the moon is a ghostly galleon tossed upon cloudy seas,
When the road is a ribbon of moonlight over the purple moor,
A highwayman comes riding—
Riding—riding—
A highwayman comes riding, up to the old inn-door.
XI

Over the cobbles he clatters and clangs in the dark inn-yard;
He taps with his whip on the shutters, but all is locked and barred;
He whistles a tune to the window, and who should be waiting there
But the landlord's black-eyed daughter,
Bess, the landlord's daughter,
Plaiting a dark red love-knot into her long black hair.
Lord, how soppy and melodramatic am I?!?
Ok, something equally romantic, but not quite as sappy:
The Look - Sara Teasdale
Stephon kissed me in the spring,
Robin in the fall,
But Colin only looked at me
And never kissed at all.
Stephon's kiss was lost in jest,
Robin's lost in play,
But the kiss in Colin's eyes
Haunts me night and day.
AWWW BLESS!!!
and finally...
To Eva Descending the Stair - Sylvia Plath

Clocks cry: stillness is a lie, my dear;
The wheels revolve, the universe keeps running.
(Proud you halt upon the spiral stair.)

The asteroids turn traitor in the air,
And planets plot with old elliptic cunning;
Clocks cry: stillness is a lie, my dear.

Red the unraveled rose sings in your hair:
Blood springs eternal if the heart be burning.
(Proud you halt upon the spiral stair.)

Cryptic stars wind up the atmosphere,
In solar schemes the titled suns go turning;
Clocks cry: stillness is a lie, my dear.

Loud the immortal nightingales declare:
Love flames forever if the flesh be yearning.
(Proud you halt upon the spiral stair.)

Circling zodiac compels the year.
Intolerant beauty never will be learning.
Clocks cry: stillness is a lie, my dear.
(Proud you halt upon the spiral stair.)
If anyone could tell me what this means, it would be awfully nice :D xxx

Monday, 8 September 2008

Prep work

I just made a cake. Normally I'm fabulous at cakes (not really at much else cook wise though) but this time, ugh...I kept putting it in the wrong size mixer bowls, and had to keep transferring, and there was a hole in the bag of flour. *sighs*

OK...

So Uni begins in what, a year? Scary thought. What's scarier is that our school has got an internal deadline for all Oxbridge applications (Oxford and Cambridge) - this Friday. Oh the joys. That means my Personal Statement (which is still a first draft...my form tutor really needs to mark it) my choices and everything need to be finished. Chances are no one will stick to this, but it's a generally scary thought. (If anyone wants to read my personal statement, I'll post it here, it's nothing interesting, awfully pretentious and not finished but it should give you a laugh - just comment me and I'll get it from my school account).

OK, so my choices. We get five choices here in England...and I finally have mine lined up. Oooh, and by the by I officially dropped Further Maths today, so I'm now taking German French and Maths for A Level, in which I got AAB (although I am determined to get my French up to an A, one way or another) and which I'm predicted AAA. So, now we've recapped on my sadly boring academic state, let's resume!!!

Choice 1 (These aren't in order) UCL - This is considered to be one of the best Universities after the Oxbridge lot. Personally I'm really excited about it, ever since I was little, I've always wanted to go here - I actually thought it was the only university in England, which perhaps implies "need" rather than "want", but you get what I mean, it's been a sort of dream. The course for Modern Languages seems fabulous too; exactly the right blend of politics, linguistics, culture, literature, film, and basic language learning. It's right in the heart of London too, which is fabulous...I LOVE London. If I succeed this will probably be my first choice Uni, but I'm guessing they'll want the full 3 As from me...so I'd have to do really well to get in.

Choice 2 King's College - I'm not particularly keen on here...it wouldn't be awful if I ended up going, but the course is very political/historical/literature - not awfully modern at all. I don't want one of these really contemporary courses where they completely forget about the culture and history of the place, but I don't want that to be my main focus. So...I probably won't put this down as firm or insurance if I can help it.

Choice 3 Oxford - Weirdly enough, I'm not so keen on this either!! I have a feeling I'm applying just to see if I get in - I might end up turning it down in favour of UCL. Well, actually, I dunno. I really like it, I like the course as well, it's quite literature based, but from a more "artistic" perspective, i.e. looking at literature for literature, rather than reference material or something. This would be really good if I ended up going into translation of books and stuff (I want to do an MA in Translation and Interpreting after I think) So yeah, I think I'd enjoy it here, but the application process is so bloody confusing, apparently they don't want to hear much extracurriculars in your personal statement, just academic stuff, whereas the other four do, and I can only write one statement. Plus, I'm really not sure about the college system - I'm thinking of applying to a specific college, 'cos I want to make sure that I get accommodation for the full length of the degree, and that there are self catering services - but apparently you're in with a better chance if you apply to the University as a whole. For those of you who don't get this, Oxford is split up into colleges, think houses at Hogwarts - you can apply to a specific one and then if you don't get in you don't get in, or you apply to the uni and they put you in whichever one they like. I think lol. So advice/help on any of this would be gratefully accepted - Emma, I'm particularly looking at you, ANYTHING about the Oxbridge admissions thing would uberly help and be appreciated :D

Choice 4 Royal Holloway - This is a definite back up - it wants like ABB or BBB or something which is perfect. Plus I love the uni itself, it's situated in the outside of London, close enough to be a University of London, but far enough to be a campus uni. Plus the course seems fantastic and it has really good grades in its research (5* - the top) which means the teaching is good. This is in competition for my second choice I think.

Choice 5 Bath - In competition with this. I only recently decided to apply to Bath, but I'm really excited, it seems a GORGEOUS city and a fabulous uni at that. Plus it wants good grades from me, but not straight As, so it's a wonderful back up, and yeah, it seems perfect!!!

So that's that. Advice? Lectures? Agree? Disagree? Whatever...tell me about it, I know most of you are heading off to uni or are already there so you'll know heaps about this.

Ok then, I'm off to do some work so I actually can get into Uni!! peace out xxx
PS oooh I'm going to see the Duchess tomorrow hopefully, I'm sooo excited!!!!! :D :D :D

Friday, 5 September 2008

64. Roman Holiday (1953)

Adorable Audrey Hepburn. Gorgeous Gregory Peck. Beautiful acting. Wonderfully shot. Epic romance. What's not to like?

Thursday, 4 September 2008

The end of Summer, and the beginning of Autumn

Ugh, am on the phone to the EMA people, and they are playing some incredibly funky jazz music. SHUT UP AND PICK UP THE PHONE!!!!!

Anyway...summer’s drawing to a close (not technically, it ends September the 22nd, but, well, did it ever begin, to be honest?) and autumn is beginning. Most of my friends tend to hate this prospect...autumn brings with it freezing weather and torrential rain, and a general mood of all round misery. I, however, love it. That's not saying much, seeing as I love all the seasons...but I've got a bit of a soft spot for autumn. After several months of summer, I tend to bore of perfect sunny skies and long balmy evenings, and long desperately for it to get dark really quickly, for freezing weather and thick winter coats and gloves and stuff.

Even though I will get bored of this soon too, this autumn-y winter-y madness lasts up 'til Christmas usually. I think the months leading up to Christmas are pretty special. Firstly there's October, when the leaves are really gorgeous colours and on the ground (not really crunchy, but usually sodden mulch. Still) and there are enormously deep puddles near the kerb. There's also this feeling in the air - a feeling I associate with Hallowe'en, when I used to design lots of different pumpkin, ghoul and vampire masks, and get special ghost and skeleton chocolate novelties from Marks and Spencers. And then of course, the fireworks start to go off - which is always lovely...I've loved fireworks since my dad took me to see a big display at Alexandra Palace. I usually stay at home and watch from my window (my house is at the top of a hill - amazing view) but last year I went to a display in my town, which was really fun - although it's really noisy and crowded, it's still really fun to actually stand there, with the bonfire smell and everything.

Then naturally, there's the Christmassy time. My family don't celebrate Christmas - it's not part of our (their) culture or religion, so I guess it makes sense - but I would really love to. I know it's commercial and expensive and blah blah blah, but I love nothing more than Christmas shopping with Christmas lights everywhere and decorated with Christmas trees and everything. It's just really lovely; it's a nice warm feeling. *beams* I am so the spirit of Christmas in disguise.

So yeah, that's the next few months for me :D Naturally schools started again...which is why I'm on the phone (they still haven't picked up - 18 minutes). I've decided to do 3 A levels - French, German and Maths. However, I desperately want my Mum to continue teaching me Maths, she's (oooh they picked up :D and I think it's sorted!!) been teaching me since I was 12, and she got me an A last year, so yeah, I want her :D But I had to check that it's alright that I only do two subjects at all (most do three) and I think it is!! EMA incidentally is a benefit/grant/funding type thing from the government where you can get up to £30 a week just for staying at school, depending on your parents' income (mine is £30 lol). Obviously, for someone about to embark on very expensive student life - I need the money. And hopefully I'll get it :D

Peace out people...hope y'all enjoy autumn too :P (I'm not entirely sure why I've spent an entire post waxing lyrical about autumn. Just go with it) xxx