Like any Reviews page, this one looks at all the movies, books and albums that come across my hot little hands.

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Mao's Last Dancer (2009).

I went to see the film adaptation of the Li Cunxin best seller with my mum and sister (both my sister and I have only half-read the book). I have to tell you, this is not just another dance movie. To compare it to Centre Stage or Step Up would be like comparing Jane Austen's writing to the Goosebumps series. Chi Cao play's Cunxin so convincingly, it brings a tear to your eyes when you witness his hardships and follow his passion for dancing in America. Bruce Greenwood plays the instructor who brings Cunxin to America and takes him under his wing, and I have to say no one could play the part more spectacularly. Amanda Schull (yes, from Centre Stage) plays Cunxin's initial love interest and first wife, and you believe her immaturity and love her! The whole movie was breathtaking and amazing. I cried, not for the sad parts but for the beautiful reunions and the moments when you think nothing more could go wrong. It was, by far, the best movie 2009 will see! To give it five stars would not suffice. It was worth millions. Please, go see it - whether you've read the book or not - you will truly be moved!

 

Five Stars.

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La Roux - Self Titled (2009).

With a band name that is French for 'the red-haired one', La Roux's debut album is magnificently reminiscent of the 80s: with big hair, androgynous clothing and heavy synth work. You would all be familiar with In For The Kill and Bulletproof but they are by no means the best songs on the album - at all. Tigerlily and Quicksand help to bring the album in with a catchy introduction, and Elly Jackson's voice is truly something else. I was happy to note that there weren't too many slow and boring songs, so this album would be great for a funky night in (or out) and would get your heart racing back the way it did when you danced around your bedroom to Duran Duran and Wham! La Roux are fantabulous by all definitions of the word. Buy this album!

 

Five Stars.

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Paramore - Brand New Eyes (2009).

Decode was insanely overrated but so far, this album isn't. It's a freakin amazing album, starting off with the gripping track Careful and then the latest single Ignorance, Brand New Eyes is a series of punky tracks with female attitude. There are a few ballad/acoustic songs later on in the album, Playing God is probably the best of those, and altogether it's not too bad.

 

Three and a half Stars.

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The Script - Self Titled (2008).

If your heart wasn't touched by The Man Who Can't Be Moved, or you didn't feel it sink when you heard Breakeven and if you don't just crumble when you hear Before The Worst then WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU??? The Script's first album is filled with songs about failed relationships and admitting the heartache. Sure, I know it was released last year but I won't give an album a chance until it's had a few decent songs hit the radio. To be honest, I hadn't expected much from this little Dublin trio when We Cry was released, since the song was practically a guy's take on Kelly Rowland's Stole, about young people who miss their chance at life. And the songs Talk You Down and Rusty Halo sound very near Sting and the Police. Nevertheless, the album is flawless in it's so-called indie-pop. The music isn't over the top, instead fulfilling in its simplicity and the lyrics are so jammed packed in each song you find yourself questioning how a 3:24 minute song could possibly fit 510 words (okay, exaggerating). If you thought Sinead O'Connor's Nothing Compares To You was your ultimate fall-apart-after-a-break-up song, take a listen to this album and you'll find yourself covered for the next few heartaches. Absolutely brilliant. Buy tissues though.

 

Four stars.

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