Films, Reviews

Review: Doctor Strange (2016)

eoionog4yb7pbvfcboiwBenedict Cumberbatch is excellent as Doctor Strange. The character’s likeness is almost perfect, and it has some depth, but not more than you can expect from a commercial action-oriented film. Special effects are well designed and serve the narrative. The story is simple, but well-paced and with just the right amount of exposition. All in all, one of the best Marvel films so far .

My Little Pony, Reviews

Review: Double Rainboom (2013) by Zachary Rich et al

vlcsnap-2013-03-31-17h52m43s45Double Rainboom is a half-hour long animated episode, made as a college project by fans of the TV show My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. And it’s not only of professional quality, it comes very close to the actual show.

The story follows Rainbow Dash, as she experiences unexpected side effects of a magical potion, and takes us on a ride with with plenty of references to the My Little Pony fandom and to other animated shows.

Compared to the other recent fan-made episode, Snowdrop, production values are much higher. The animation is much more complex and ambitious, with lots of visual gags. Voice acting is also better than in Snowdrop, even if it can’t match the top-tier professional voice actors working on the TV show.

The most apparent flaw is the pacing, which is a little bit slower than we’re used to in animated children’s shows. In dialogues, it feels like we’re always waiting for characters to voice their lines. The episode could probably have been cut 5 minutes and been better for it.
Despite this, the episode ranks up there with an average Friendship is Magic episode, and is much better than many professional animations shown on TV.

This episode is well worth watching for anyone who likes children’s animation. And for fans of My Little Pony, I can only say: DO NOT MISS!

My Little Pony, Reviews

Review: Snowdrop (2013) by SillyFillyStudios

Screenshot scaled

When My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic started airing in 2010, it inspired a huge fan following, not among it’s primary demographic, 7 to 12 year old girls, but among teens and adults of both genders. They’ve produced a huge amoung of fan art, fan fiction, fan music and fan videos, and more than one group has set out to create an entire fan-made episode of the show. The first of these has now been released: Snowdrop.

The story is very simple: A school class is preparing gifts for Equestria’s princesses on the spring sunrise celebration. Snowdrop, a blind filly, can’t find anyone who wants to work with her, and has to use her unique skills to come up with a gift.

The animation is beautiful, but relatively simple, since the story is told mostly through dialogue and narration. The individual frames are beautifully drawn and closely follow the TV show’s style. Fans of the show may also appreciate the appearance of the Princesses Luna and Celestia in younger form, complete with exquisitely flowing ethereal manes.

The voice acting is not quite up to professional standards, but very competent. It could also have benfitted from a more diverse casting. The actress who voices the school teacher is far too young, despite her effort to vibrate her voice to give it an old lady’s timbre.

The story itself succeeds in being sentimental, sometimes a little too much. It also suffers from a flaw which is all-to-common in fan fiction: the main character starts out being misunderstood, then ends up being much more successful and celebrated than the story motivates. Despite this, it’s touching and poetic. A “must watch” for any fans of the show.

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Peace Prize Committee awards prize to Alfred Nobel


Oslo, October 12
— Earlier today, the Stortinget in Norway announced this year’s Nobel Peace Prize laureate. In a surprising move, they decided to award the prize to its long-dead founder, Alfred Nobel.

In recent decades, several of of the Peace Prize winners have been controversial, including Barack Obama, who received the prize two weeks into his presidency, and Mikhail Gorbatjov, who lead the Soviet Union through the end of its Communist era.


“It was really hard picking the prize this year”, the chairman of the committe, Olaf Ruskebus, says. “We already gave the prize to all the democracy champions of the world, and giving the prize to a world leader backfired twice. Finally, someone had a brilliant insight: If the Peace Prize is so important, surely the one most deserving of it, is the man who created it!”

When asked if he thinks this year’s prize will be controversial, he responds, “It’s always been controversial when a new breed of laureate is announced. Gandhi was controversial. And now is the first time we give the Prize to a dead person. Who knows who’ll get it next year?”

When asked about next year’s prize, Ruskebus says, “We have some very interesting candidates! We’ve received nominations both for The People of Earth, and for Peace Itself!”