Joy

White blouse and long pants. Like a high-wire walker, Joy balances femininity and professionalism, family and business, logic and love.

As an advocate for equal pay, Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence truly embraced her character as an unexpected but steadfast matriarch of a crazy family. To name a few, she has to deal with an ex-husband (Edgar Ramirez) who lives in their basement, a father (Robert de Niro) who was returned by his second wife, a mother (Virginia Madsen) obsessed with watching soap operas and the only saving grace, a grandmother (Diane Ladd) who fiercely instilled ambition in her.

The film has tantalizing visuals, clever use of dreams and TV scenes and inspiring musical scores. The story is scattered with flashbacks and fast-forwards, chaotic in nature, like mixing business with family. As messy as business can be, the trials and tribulations create an opportunity for Joy. It gives a reason to pursue her dream or rather, demands her to go back to the one thing where she felt most herself – creating through her hands.

Time passes and challenges become victories when she take matters to her own hands, her ingenious idea materialized into a product that becomes a business and this business becomes an empire. Through her innate creativity and incessant stubbornness, Joy shows  anyone can rise from the depths of the earth with grace even when it’s muddy down there.

 

 

 

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After Earth

Image
Source: G4TV

Visuals are commendable as a post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller yet even Will Smith’s convincing portrayal cannot save the general dryness of a cliché-filled drama set in a futuristic world.

Inhabitants of a once people-friendly Earth have evolved to kill humans as they hunt them down through their ability to literally sense fear. Sailing through the ebb and flow of a father-son relationship, Cypher (Will Smith) navigates his son Kitai Raige (Jaden Smith) through an illusive forest with a silence brimming of menace. A frustrated cadet whose only aim is to be promoted as ranger, Kitai is eager to prove himself to the prime commander – his father.

As Kitai faces each predator, he is re-acquainted with a fear more potent than terror of the wilderness. Will Smith cast a spell once again because it’s difficult to see a sunny goody two shoes actor play an estranged father. However, the robotic personality in this film showed Smith’s versatility and grace.

One of the rare highlights comes in a central theme explored throughout the film. It questions the conventional notion of fear and unravels its true nature as a conscious choice taken every second of the day much like picking an apple from an orange; fear is an illusion we succumb to if we let it.

Director M. Night Shyamalan seemed to have taken no risks for the film has a predictable plot and forgettable music mashed up with a script that is melodramatic at best and tawdry at worst. Visually sumptuous on occasion and a dash of humour here and there keeps the viewer awake but just barely.

“You don’t have to know you’re going to die before you start living.”

You can either sit in the basement and wait. OR you can get out there and do some crazy stuff.

It’s really simple. Life is about making people happy. Sometimes you have to learn it the hard way.

I want to be remembered as the kid who went down fighting. And didn’t really lose.

Three things Filipinos would ask…

Every time there’s a gathering, mostly birthday parties, in which people go crazy by cooking sumptuous Filipino cuisine, it’s always a grand banquet, a big feast.

There’s three main qualities of the Filipino culture. Here’s what every adult would ask a typical young woman in her teenage years:

1. Tumangkad ka. Ilang taon ka na nga? (You grew taller, how old are you now?)

A question from the older people. We like tall people, I’m not quite sure why! This is usually followed by some speech along the lines of: “You’re growing up fast and almost a lady, soon enough you’ll have your own family.” Family-oriented, close family ties, you name it.

2. Kumain ka na? (Have you eaten?)

If you say no, they would insist that you eat; if you say yes, they would politely ask you to eat more and more and more… Gosh, we’re really generous.

3. May boyfriend ka na? (Do you have a boyfriend now?)

Talk about no privacy. Even to the point of inquiring about our love life. Everyone wants to know… well I think being innately inquisitive is a good and bad thing 😀

Gotta love Filipinos though. We care too much 😉

Overheard: Reality TV? That’s nothing.

Combine Home and Away (If you’re Aussie, you will understand this) and Keeping up with the Kardashians, not that I’ve ever watched a single episode. I’m simply basing this on annoying promos during commercial breaks. But I am almost completely certain that my real-life characters (without them knowing) are way more interesting and the storyline is much more entertaining. Read on and find out why!

People in their forties were talking loudly on the train, as though no one was there:

It started like this…

How often do you see your daughter?

None of your bloody business!

Well, my father gave me pearls and opals. They’re beautiful.

Ah, probably ‘cause he said to himself: Here’s jewellery, go away. Yes, finally! She’s gone!

Then the woman started to open up…

A Soliloquy

Look at me. I look like shit. I cried and cried. And he treated me like a thief. He broke my heart. All the lies. And shit.

I don’t know what I do. I should just be happy with my own little life. There was Perry who comes and we’re all in love then he leaves for five days. Doesn’t call, just a couple of texts saying don’t call me, I’m with my partner. Ah, it’s just shit. Then there was Matthew, oh don’t get me started on him.

I just need to get my confidence back but Robin took all my confidence.

The things I do to make myself happy.

If I was a bitch from hell, why didn’t he just tell me? Nobody reads minds.

(This one is worthy to be quoted, I think)

You listen to four or five stories of the same event. It’s amazing how people have such different perceptions and versions of what happened.

[Silence.]

How are those relatives of yours?

They have this mentality that it’s what you do – steal and lie. That life is all about you. And the whole world owes you.

 They touch on a particular Auntie…

I thought she was getting good money from the house.

Everyday is a different story. One day there’s a renter, one day she’s given up on it.

She’s in another world. She must have a carer or someone to look after her.

She needs to but she doesn’t want to.

The next topic is one of their nieces…

She said she wants to jump off the balcony then I say: Hang on, hang on.

She’s definitely bipolar. Has she got medication?

Yes, she does but she probably doesn’t take them. I said one time, “Are you popping pills?” She said, “Do you want speed?”

(laughs)

 And ended the lively conversation with a random thought…

(Pointing to the building)

There’s a hole in the middle of the building.

That’s most unusual.

That’s certainly unusual but I’m not quite sure if I like it.

Juicy gossip, insightful musings and dramatic monologues  straight from the mouth of lovely strangers who just happen to be comfortable sharing their life stories to everyone on the train. People are people. We love them anyway.

I was listening, accidentally on purpose. I know you would too if you were me.

Care to share any stories you “overheard”? (I know you want to. Come on, don’t be a pussy.)

The Secrets People Tell

“How I wish I could hug everyone and tell them that it’s okay. It’s okay to be scared and angry and hurt and selfish. It’s part of being human,”
Frank Warren, PostSecret: Extraordinary Confessions from Ordinary Lives

It is highly addictive. You want to know what nobody knows or at least, you’d like to think so.

Earthlings who may or may not have a broken family, a BMW, an apartment and a fluffy dog named “Fluffy” would send a postcard to Frank Warren’s address. It then gets published in the PostSecret website and with a touch of a finger, people from China to Iceland to Nepal and every other place in between will know your secret. Except they won’t know it’s yours.

Founder Frank Warren can quite possibly bring us closer and make us feel more connected through the “largest advertisement-free blog in the world”: PostSecret. Or does it?

For some who enjoy “people watching” and imagining how strangers live their lives or those whose curiosity simply cannot be contained, these raw and real confessions are a glimpse into the unknown: a snippet of a person’s life.

Source: http://www.justjared.com/2007/03/11/post-secret-mystery-celebrity-dad/

Perhaps as we look through a tiny hole, created by every secret revealed, we might come to see signs of desperation, hear the voice of the voiceless or feel a tinge of joy in humanity’s unheralded achievements – all depending on the way you interpret the words on the postcard, each is a product of a person’s creativity.

PostSecret ask people to:

 Reveal anything – as long as it is true and you have never shared it with anyone before.

Heart wrenching, alarming, poignant, profound, ridiculously funny – you never know what to expect. Like a thread that binds all secrets, one thing you can find in common is the inexplicable feeling upon seeing humanity at its finest: beautiful, flaws and all.

Who knows, maybe someone you know revealed something they’d never tell you or perhaps you may come across a secret you keep to yourself.

For Mother’s Day secrets that will shock you, inspire you or make you feel lucky enough to have a mum visit http://www.postsecret.com/

Listen to the founder himself and may it give you something good, no matter what it is.

“It’s the children the world almost breaks who grow up to save it.” ― Frank Warren

Ready for Some Colour?

Spectators should expect to see an avalanche of colour as clouds of rainbow explosions are unleashed on participants of the 5km Swisse Color Run charity fundraiser on 2 June.

Sydney Color Run (10 February 2013) Credit: MJC Wilkie Productions
Sydney Color Run
(10 February 2013)
Credit: MJC Wilkie Productions

Inspired by the Hindu Holi Festival, participants will pass through a “colour zone” every kilometre and emerge rainbow-coloured from head to toe after being doused in about 3,000 kilograms of coloured powder.

“It’s not a contest, it’s not about the fastest time, but focussed on getting out and about and celebrating life with family and friends. It’s unique in that we attract a very broad audience – from mums with bubs in prams right through to grandparents walking it at their own pace,” Swisse Color Run National Manager Luke Hannan explained.

Paying a visit to the Gold Coast Country Club, the Color Run national tour aims to raise $1 million in charitable contributions this year.

Swisse’s charitable arm Celebrate Life Foundation selected the Ponting Foundation as its local charity partner and beneficiary for Gold Coast.

“One child dying of cancer is one too many with a young and promising life cut too short. The Ponting Foundation is dedicated to doing everything possible to help young Australians and their families beat cancer, ” said former Australian Cricket Captain and Swisse Ambassador Ricky Ponting.

Sydney Color Run (10 February 2013) Credit: MJC Wilkie Productions
Sydney Color Run
(10 February 2013)
Credit: MJC Wilkie Productions

Co-founder of the Ponting Foundation and wife to Ricky, Rianna Ponting revealed that the funds raised would support research projects on children’s health at the National Institute of Integrative Medicine (NIIM).

“The monies raised from this amazing event will be going straight into our partnership with NIIM to undertake some ground breaking research into children’s wellness so we can further reduce the number of children that die each year from cancer.”

Taking part of the race, nine members of Team Ross including Vicki Dobrunz will be walking/running/dancing in memory of her late brother and Gold Coast local Ross Hargreaves, who passed away from brain cancer two years ago.

“The Color Run would have been something he would have loved… anything zany and outrageous – he was a part of.”

To register and find out more about events in other cities, visit www.theswissecolorrun.com.au

Interested volunteers can contact Swisse at aus.volunteer@thecolorrun.com

Support participants by donating at http://www.everydayhero.com.au/event/colorrungc2013

Published on http://socialjournalism.com.au/ready-for-some-colour/