Ok, so just for clarity, this post is about the latest Amy Schumer film and not a declaration about how I feel about myself...and what a film it is! This comedy actually made me full on laugh out loud - it was a joy to watch and I really think it deserves better than it's got.

What I mean by that - by it deserving better, is that it didn't receive the greatest reviews, and it didn't get the best box office turn out. In my books it aimed to do three things:

1. Make you laugh (it's a comedy after all)
2. Make you realise that you are beautiful - it's all about self-love you know! Believe in yourself!
3. Tell a love story

In my opinion, it did all three.

When Renee (played by Schumer) hits her head she sees herself as this amazing supermodel and she gets all this confidence. She gets a job as a receptionist - because that's what she'd always wanted to do, and she gets a guy. Don't get me wrong, I see how people might (in this iffy topic that is self-esteem and beauty) think it's not always 'on message', as it were, but it's supposed to be funny (which it definitely is), and also I think whilst we may not wish the world to be one in which a dream is to be beautiful, but a lot of people look in the mirror and wish to change a few things - that's reality. It shouldn't be like that, but it is!

So with her new found confidence, things start happening for her - be confident, that's clearly the key!! The things that happen aren't all good though, and her life becomes built around how she thinks she looks externally. Without wishing to spoil too much (eek maybe just don't read the rest of the paragraph!) she forgets a bit of who she was before the accident - the real Renee, that her friends love.

Would I recommend it? Yes.
Would I watch it again? Yes.

I think those are really the only two important questions! I would love to know what you think though - did you enjoy it? Also, what do you think I should watch next - are there any films coming to cinemas soon that you're really looking forward to seeing?!

Hope you have a wonderful week,
Isabelle



Photo:iamyourtargetdemographic.com
Getcha nerd on (which is a statement I already regret writing) and watch The Big Bang Theory which is now all on Netflix (apart from season 11).

I loved this show when it first started...then I kind of fell out of love with it, I think around the end of season 9 to season 10 they lost track a little, but since I've started rewatching it I've been reminded why I loved it in the first place - also I'm such a romantic so watching all the wonderful (and awkward) Sheldon and Amy moments has been lovely!

What I like about it is that at its core it's a show about people who are outsiders (well apart from Penny), and how they interact with the world. They are weird, but I think everyone can recognise a bit of themselves in them (who else has a 'spot' that they will always sit in?)! Oddballs have always been fun characters to have in television sitcoms - characters like Niles Crane (from Frasier) and Manny (Modern Family) and this show really does odd very well. Sheldon, with his myriad of phobias and strong opinions, drives a lot of the storylines (and is at the centre of a lot of jokes.

What else to say? Well, I'm sure most of you have come across The Big Bang Theory before, you may have been at one-time loyal watchers but now left it behind a bit. I get it. The show does start to tail off a bit, the characters develop (a good thing) but they lose some of their quirks (a bad thing) and the episodes get more similar. As I said earlier in the post, this happens around season 9 ish and whilst I have seen episodes in the following seasons, I haven't seen all of them (which rarely happens with me and a television show - I usually stick with it and watch it all, if I like it enough to watch it in the first place).

Overall, I'd definitely recommend watching the first seasons again - it's funny (despite some dumb blonde jokes, well a lot of dumb Penny jokes, which I'm not sure they'd have if the show was written again now) and it's a good sitcom, there's a reason it has eleven seasons!

Have a wonderful week,
Isabelle


No. of episodes: 255 (11 seasons)
My favourite episode: This is a ridiculous question considering there are 11 seasons! 
Favourite character: I mean Sheldon - he has such good lines, so many great jokes and he develops a lot over the series
Ending: The show is ongoing (we're up to season 11)
Available: Netflix 
This book kept popping up on 'Best Book' lists and 'Classic Books' lists and...well basically a lot of lists. I thought since I had never read any Tolkien books before I'd start with The Hobbit as it's thin and a good (apparently) introduction into the universe of elves and dwarves and wizards.

The first thing I noticed about this book is how passionate people are about it. I started reading it on a long train journey and I think I should tell you, if you do not want to have very passionate people talk to you excitedly about the book (at length) then don't read this book on public transport!

My very old copy of The Hobbit
I did enjoy it. It wasn't quite as amazing as I had imagined it would be, which I find is often the way about books that are 'classics', don't get me started on 'Wuthering Heights' - that was not the romantic novel I was promised! So The Hobbit is not my new favourite book, but it was interesting, there was adventure and intrigue, plot twists and a good ol' fashioned quest. There are also elves which I liked - I think I was to live in The Hobbit universe I would definitely want to be an elf!

So...should you read The Hobbit? Is it worth it? Does it deserve the title of 'Classic'?

To those questions I would say: yes it's worth it and yes I think you should read The Hobbit - it comes
up more than you'd think and it's good to know what the fuss is about. It's quite an easy read and generally just light with some interesting chapters (I especially like the very start where all the dwarves show up at Bilbo's house, and the section where Bilbo and Gandalf pose each other riddles). As for whether I think it's a classic - yes, it's had a large cultural impact and it's brought a lot of joy to a lot of people!

Take a look and let me know what you think!

Have a wonderful week,
Isabelle

Pictures: https://litreactor.com/columns/culling-the-classics-the-hobbit
Who else is looking forward to doing some relaxing and reading this summer? Well, I am, and I have got together a list of books that I'm hoping to read:


1. Me Before You
Jojo Moyes

This love story introduces Lou Clark to the world! I have seen the film with the wonderful Emilia Clarke and I fell in love with it. It's a lovely story about a woman who goes to care for a quadriplegic, Will Traynor, it's sad but lovely too!

2. Bookworm
Lucy Mangan

You're always told not to judge a book by its cover but I loved this cover and I read the introduction and just had to buy it! Lucy writes about all the books she fell in love with as a child (and some she really didn't like), I've read a couple of chapters and it's like talking to an old friend about Enid Blyton and Babar (which I actually liked by the way - for one the daughter is called Isabelle) and all those other children's books you read and loved.


3. The Storm Sister
Lucinda Riley

I read the first book in this series and loved it! It was a romantic story (can you see a trend starting with my book choices?!) with two parts - one the present, and the other set in the past. Each book in the series focuses on a different sister and as I enjoyed the first story I'm looking forward to seeing what happens in this one, and hopefully getting the answers to some questions I had!

4. The Lost Continent
Bill Bryson

I haven't read any Bill Bryson's before but I have heard that his books are interesting and funny! I was drawn to this book because I would love to go to America and travel around a bit, I've read Kerouac so now to see what Bryson says about his homeland!

5. How To Stop Time
Matt Haig

I have heard people raving about Matt Haig and I read the blurb and I was sold - a man who has lived for centuries goes back to his ho
me in London, becomes fascinated by a French teacher (in a sweet, romantic kind of way) and has to decide if he's going to start living in the present and break the rules he made for himself.  By the way, I found out Benedict Cumberbatch bought the film rights to this book - how exciting is that?!

6. The Idiot
Elif Batuman

Having just finished my first year at uni, I am ready to read about someone else making mistakes and living life at university. Also, any book called 'The Idiot' about someone at university is going to be good (and funny).

7. The Robber Bride
Margaret Atwood

I couldnt' have a summer reading list without one Atwood novel. I always find them quite difficult reads in many respects but when I finish I am bowled over by how good they are. This book is mysterious - an old university classmate who everyone thought was dead reappears...and opens up old scars.

8. Why Not Me?
Mindy Kaling

I love Mindy Kaling! I read her first book (Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?) and I loved the fact that she was so honest and funny! I'm looking forward to some more funny, light reading from the mind that brought us 'The Mindy Project'!
My goal in life is to be as self-confident as Mindy's character in 'The Mindy Project'

9. Room With A View
E.M. Forster

I have been meaning to read this book for ages and I am going to read it this summer! I want to get lost in a book about Italy and love!

Do you have any books you're planning to read this summer?

Have a wonderful week,
Isabelle


This movie is sweet and hilarious, has a brilliant cast and a lovely reference to the original Jumanji and of course the wonderful Robin Williams.

Let's start with Jack Black, him pretending to be a self-absorbed teenage girl is the funniest thing I have watched in a really long time. When Bethany picks 'Shelly' the 'Curvy Genius' to be her avatar she does not expect to end up with the body of Jack Black and the knowledge of a cartographer. Similarly, nerdy Spencer doesn't expect the body of Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson, and shy Martha doesn't expect to be badass Ruby Roundhouse who among other things is skilled in dance fighting (whatever that is). The other main character in the film is Fridge (which I assume is a nickname) who is played by Kevin Hart. I don't think I've ever seen a film with Kevin Hart that hasn't been hilarious - and this is no different. He is a stand-out actor who you can't help be drawn to and to love!
Who else has cake as a weakness?!

Now the plot ... I can imagine how hard it was after the success of the first Jumanji to try and write a script that matched up to people's expectations. I think they did a good job. Basically the board game transforms itself into video game (I mean it is magic after all) and the players after choosing their avatars get sucked into the world of Jumanji (where Alan Parrish went in the original film).

What else do I have to say?! Well, there's some nice character development (if the stars are high schoolers there really has to be some kind of epiphany for them about what life is really about - it's kind of a given) and a touch of romance (although there is one scene that makes me cringe a bit). There's also a throwback to Alan Parrish - Nick Jonas' character lives in Alan's jungle home for the twenty years (yes TWENTY YEARS) he is stuck in Jumanji before the other characters arrive.

Take a look at the film and let me know! It's a funny family film that I would definitely recommend! Let me know what you think!

Have a wonderful week,
Isabelle

(Also quite confusingly Dwayne Johnson is in TWO movies called Welcome to the Jungle so when you pick up the DVD make sure you get the right one)!

Pictures:
http://www.denofgeek.com/uk/movies/jumanji-welcome-to-the-jungle/53917/jumanji-welcome-to-the-jungle-review

With lots of reading to do for my course it's been tricky to find time to do any other reading but I loved this book and I am so glad I've read it!

Apparently there is an increase in books about compassion and kindness known as 'up lit' and this is one of those books. The story by Gail Honeyman is about a woman called Eleanor Oliphant who has had a difficult past but wants to change he future. She tries to change herself and learn to live properly. She makes friends with Raymond (perhaps a bit reluctantly)and it it this friendship that really makes the book for me.

The book is funny, it is moving and it is a joy to read. It is split into two sections 'Good Days' and 'Bad Days' - I fell in love with Eleanor a little bit, I rooted for her and I wanted to succeed. She's a character who has clearly struggle so much and continues to struggle. She struggles with 'Mummy' who rings her every Wednesday evening - a woman shrouded in mystery who has committed a heinous crime, and she struggles with alcohol and she struggles with the people around her. I may be making this book seem really depressing but it is not the case at all, it is an uplifting book.

So I've said how much I love it, but what actually happens to Eleanor in the book? Well she goes to a concert and meets the love of her life (well she doesn't exactly meet him) and she decides to make some changes in her life, sometimes with the help of Raymond, to become the kind of person she can see this man, this love of her life, falling for. Without wishing to give anything away - things don't exactly go to plan!

It's been a long time since I've read a book so quirky and joyful and with so much heart (I know I'm verging into book reviewing cliches but I can't help it)!

Have a wonderful week,
Isabelle

Post Comment Love
Pictures: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/you/article-5455181/Reading-Group-Eleanor-Oliphant-Completely-Fine-Gail-Honeyman.html
I watched this movie again just before writing the post to remind me what goes on. I think Knocked Up is probably one of Katherine Heigl most famous films, and Judd Apatow's - why? Well let's take a look...

Firstly, it's got got all the key elements of a romantic comedy - two slightly (well not-so-slightly in this case) messed up characters who dislike each other and are pushed together, in this case by Allison, Heigl's character, getting accidentally 'knocked up'. 

Secondly, because it is genuinely funny, most of the time. I like this film, but it's not my favourite of her comedies (I think 'Life as We Know It' is probably my favourite). Getting back to the point though, Knocked Up really does have some funny moments, and some moments that anyone watching will relate to - I think this is a good sign for any movie!
What else to say? Well, I love Leslie Mann - she is super funny (as a side note she is a very funny crier - I don't think any actress cries as well as Leslie Mann). She's a sort of secondary character in this movie but she plays the 'mum got-it-together-some-of-the-time' figure really well (she is the main character in Knocked Up's sort of sequel This is 40). 

My other favourite moment (and don't read if you don't want spoilers, but to be honest as soon as the movie happens you can probably guess this) is when Seth Rogan (who I think in every movie he's in smokes drugs - at least that's my perception) 'grows up' and begins to mature as a person. 

Anyway, the movie is currently on Netflix UK so take a look!!

Have a wonderful week, 
Isabelle
Aren't Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann's children the sweetest in this movie?
So I'm British and I'm going to make a very controversial statement (probably not that controversial) - I really like the American version of Ricky Gervais' The Office. I don't normally like American versions - I mean why oh why can they not just watch our programmes? We watch theirs, and our shows are brilliant (I must stop myself now or else this post will just become me lamenting on American's remaking our stuff)!

I really love this show. The first few episodes it struggles to find it's feet a little bit, Steve Carell's Michael (the boss) is a bit slapstick, a bit weird, but by the second season everything has settled and the writers have really got into the swing of things. I really got involved in the character's lives - their ups, their downs, and each character from Kevin, to Angela, to Michael to Pam got their moments. The jokes and pranks are hilarious, even the second or third time you watch the episodes, but what really makes this show special is how the people of Dunder Mifflin (the paper company they all work for) become a little bit like family.

Now I don't want to spoil anything but this show has some of the best romantic moments of any show - it makes me think that anyone however strange, or unusual can find love. Whilst Jim and Pam might be the couple of the show, Michael's constant search for love is such a rollercoaster (see the episode Dinner Party for a particularly crazy point in his search for a lady).

The Office is quite unusual because it is a mockumentary and they film it as if there really is a camera crew in the office. This is interesting, but it can be a bit of an adjustment as sometimes shots are obstructed by things (as the characters are trying to have a private moment and the cameras are trying  to capture it).

The other thing I have to mention is the brilliant Mindy Kaling! She wrote some of the best episodes - like Niagara (which she got nominated for an Emmy for), and she plays the very funny Kelly (who may be actually insane) - her romance with B.J. Novak's character Ryan Howard (who is the worst by the way) is hilarious (seriously look up Kelly Kapoor on Pinterest...enjoy)!





I'd love to know what your favourite episodes are! Let me know!
Have a wonderful week,

Isabelle


No. of episodes: 201 episodes (9 seasons)
My favourite episode: I mean there are 9 brilliant seasons - there is no way I could choose! 
Favourite character: I love Jim, but for comedy purposes my favourite has to be Dwight
Ending: I have seen the final episode about 3 times and I cry every time (but it is happy)
Available: for Brits it's available on DVD

I have heard there is supposed to be a reboot. I hope they don't because they ended it in such a good place - what else can they achieve? 


Pictures: 
https://www.narcity.com/entertainment/the-office-is-finally-getting-a-reboot-but-theres-one-catch
https://www.altpress.com/news/entry/jenna_fischer_the_office_revival_2018
https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/236368680420274363/
https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/610026712000102167/
This week my word has to be:

It was very hard to pick a word this week, it was my birthday at the beginning of the week so I've had lots of celebrations for that, including going out to see Blockers at the local Cineworld. I've also been lucky enough to get some new shoes (so shoes was a definite possibility for word of the week)!

However, I had to go with summer in the end, because despite the fact that as I write this it is cloudy and raining, overall this week has just been so lovely and summery. I've been able to wear summer dresses, and walk in the sunbeams! With the daffodils still out from Spring everything has been so bright and yellow and warm - I love it, doesn't summer just make everyone feel happier?

Another thing that has been making me feel happy this week is sitting in the sun reading a beautiful book by Lucy Mangan called 'Bookworm' all about all of those books I read as a child - where my love of reading all began!

As it's been sunny this week I have been updating my makeup look - adding a bit more lovely bronzer, shimmery eyeshadow and using a glow stick called 'Beach Babe' (I'm not sure at all what a glow stick is, or what it does, or how to use it, but I'm giving it a go)!

Picture featuring my curtains and wash cloth (just like those instagrammers do it)!

Hope you have all had a lovely summery week,

Isabelle
The Reading Residence
What with my birthday, coming back to uni, and getting back to work it's been a bit busy and I'm ready for a bit of a relax this evening, so I'm going to sit down and watch The Job Lot on Netflix.

I came across this programme quite by accident on Netflix and decided to watch it as I recognised Sarah Hadland in the photo as Stevie from Miranda. I wasn't expecting much from The Job Lot but I've actually really enjoyed it. It's been the first programme in a long time that has actually made me laugh out loud. 

The Job Lot is set in a job centre in Brownall and revolves around the people who work there such as the very neurotic and funny Trish (Hadland), the slightly crazy cat-loving hater-of-people Angela, the funny Karl, the lovely Natalie and all the other staff and job seekers at Brownall job centre. I would describe the series as a toned down version of The Office.

While some of the episodes have predictable plot lines overall they are very good, the writers are brilliant at playing various characters off each other. One of my favourite moments in the series is in First Impressions (S2 E2) where due to a misunderstanding Angela (who hates everyone, particularly Trish) becomes Trish's PA, hilarity ensues.

Definitely take a look, it's funny, it's sweet and the characters are overall just very nice (some nice romantic moments too)!

Let me know what you think,
Isabelle



No. of episodes: 18 (3 series)
My favourite episode: Workshop (S2 E6)
Favourite character: Trish (you gotta love her)
Ending: The show has ended (sadly)
Available: Netflix 

Photos: https://www.comedy.co.uk/tv/the_job_lot/
http://keithduffyexperience.co.uk/the-job-lot/4590309563