REVIEW: Django Unchained

Attracting a whirlwind of controversy on its way, Django Unchained hits UK cinemas this week. Tarantino returns after a three year hiatus, bringing his trademark mixture of sharp wit and gut-wrenching violence to the spaghetti Western genre. This is a marvellous return to form following the somewhat dull and drawn-out Inglorious Bastards. The plot keeps you on the edge of your seat, and the film is topped off with dynamic performances from Samuel L Jackson, Leonardo Dicaprio and Jamie Foxx. In short, it’s everything you’d expect a Tarantino Western to be.

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REVIEW: Gangster Squad

gangster-squad-movie-image-sean-pennUpon first viewing the trailer for Gangster Squad, it was hard to keep up with the array of big stars involved. Sean Penn, Josh Brolin, Emma Stone and the now somewhat infamous Ryan Gosling. I must admit, I was dubious about how stylised the look and feel of the trailer was and the slightly naff title. Still, with a cast like that I had big expectations.

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Grand Theft Auto V: Trailer #2

It looks like Rockstar are pulling out all the stops once again for their next installation of the Grand Theft Auto series. Hopping across the States, GTA V is set on the West Coast and looks like it will include all the japes and humour that make the games such a joy to play. Although graphically it’s beginning to look a bit long in the tooth, you can bank on the Rockstar have created an impeccably designed world for your to tear apart. Bring on Spring 2013.

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Lord of the Rings Demographics Visualised

Having just finished reading ‘The Hobbit’ ahead of it’s theatrical release this Christmas, I’ve become slightly obsessed with the world of Tolkein. Published by Emil Johansson earlier this year, the LotR Project has attracted fevered interest. Gaining praise from casual fans of the series and die-hards alike, Johansson has been spurred on to create a truly fantastic piece of research. Through meticulous fact checking and the help of other LotR fans, he has managed to create infographics showing various information on the demographics of people in Middle Earth. Check it out after the break.

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Google sells out of Nexus 4 in 30 minutes

As with the Nexus 7 tablet, Google shocked the UK tech world when it announced the pricing structure of it’s new flagship handset. Departing from Samsung for the latest iteration of the Nexus, Google and LG has priced their new phone from just £239. This bargain basement price gets you the 8GB version, or you can stump up £279 for 16GB of onboard storage. Unsurprisingly, when the phone was released for order today it sold out in just 30 minutes. Boasting a higher pixel density than the iPhone 5 (and the blighted rear glass slab that the iPhone 4 introduced) the Nexus 4 also has 2GB RAM and a super fast 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 processor. Couple those specs with the fact you’ll always be privy to the latest and greatest version of Android OS, the Nexus 4 is a very tempting proposition indeed.

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Wii U unboxed by Nintendo President, Mr. Iwata

The unboxing video. A staple of tech blogs, from the humble bedroom blogger right through to professional outfits such as Engadget. A phenomenon older than YouTube, various brands have leaped on the possibilites this trend presents. Samsung, for example, famously asked some of the top UK tech bloggers to try unboxing the Galaxy S II in extreme situations such as whilst jumping out of a plane. So when Nintendo wanted to showcase the new Nintendo Wii U, they decided to ask their President, Mr Iwata to do the honours. The result is rather amusing, with the Japanese legend coming up with lines such as ‘I feel like Mario with these little white gloves on’. I think it’s a nice take on the format and gives us an insight into the meek nature of Nintendo’s CEO.

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I’m a big fan of this Tumblr by Christopher Moloney called FILMography. He appears to have painstakingly picked out locations in New York which appear in his favourite movies. He then returns with a camera and a photograph of a shot from the film. Although the Elf snap has to be my favourite, see if you can recognise some of the others after the break.

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REVIEW: Skyfall

Never before has a James Bond film attracted so much hype. Skyfall nearly didn’t happen. With Ian Fleming’s back catalogue quickly running dry and MGM experiencing serious financial problems it seemed we had seen the end of 007. However, with the help of some infamous product placement deals and the patience of Sam Mendes, Daniel Craig has once again burst onto our screens.

The return of the sixth Bond comes in the form of a spectacular opening sequence. Rumoured to have taken three months to complete, the action scene that precedes Adele’s title track is incredible. Set in Turkey, we see Bond do battle with a fleeting adversary before a mishap results in him falling to almost certain death. With MI6 assuming the worst, this sets the scene for an almighty come-back from Bond following a terrorist attack in London.

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Apple release the iPad Mini

Steve Jobs may well be turning in his grave at the news that Apple has launched it’s first iPad Mini. Despite their visionary ex-CEO stating that 7-inch tablets would be ‘dead-on-arrival’ when they came to market, the Apple guided by Tim Cook has decided unveiled Apple’s first 7.9 inch iPad. Costing from £269 for the 16GB version, the new device comes with a decidedly lack-lustre spec list; an A5 chip, a 1024 x 768 display and just 163 PPI. It is, in essence, an iPad 2. Admittedly, squeezing this into a device weighing just 308g is impressive. However, since the release of the iPad 2, the competition has been busy. Google shocked the tech world with it’s Asus-built Nexus 7  just 4 months ago. The Android powered tablet packs a quad-core Tegra 3 chip behind a 1280 x 800 display…and you can pick one up from just £159. Oh, and that includes £15 to spend in the Play Store.

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BNTL 5th Anniversary mix by SMUTLEE

Esteemed lifestyle blog BNTL (Better Never Than Late, if you’re not ‘down with the kids’) are hosting a 5th anniversary party this Thursday. Featuring a host of special guest DJ’s, the Thursday night party in on Hoxton Street looks set to be a good ‘un. To celebrate, they’ve hooked up with mix-master SMUTLEE to bring us a fantastic mix of the best UK records from the last 5 years. You can stream it after the break or download it here.

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