Film Review: Contagion

(Read this in my publication In Retrospect – Issue 3 and in my student newspaper, Flex)

Linking to my previous review for British thriller Retreat, starring Cillian Murphy, Thandie Newton and Jamie Bell which you can read here, Contagion is the second film to be released this month that explores the widespread of a killer virus. As an American take on the genre, Contagion tackles the situation in a completely different way, concluding in a seemingly more optimistic outcome and looking at the effects of a virus globally.

Contagion, directed by Steven Soderbergh, follows the rapid spread of a lethal virus caught through indirect contact. As the fast-moving pandemic grows, we see how a variety of people deal with the situation, including worldwide medical team members, Dr Leonora Orantes (Marion Cotillard), Dr Ellis Cheever (Laurence Fishburne) and Dr Erin Mears (Kate Winslet), journalist Alan Krumwiede (Jude Law), and parents Mitch (Matt Damon) and Beth Emhoff (Gwyneth Paltrow). With a race to find a cure and to control the panic as the world turns to mayhem, we see the lengths these people go to in order to save the world whilst having to maintain their own reputations at the same time.

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Film Review: Midnight In Paris

(Read this in my publication In Retrospect – Issue 3 and in my student newspaper, Flex.)

Midnight In Paris premiered at this year’s Cannes Film Festival and has since been a global box office success. Written and directed by Woody Allen, the romantic comedy-fantasy explores the theme of nostalgia, reflecting back on the Golden era of the 1920s which leads one man to question whether these illusions of the past are better than the present one he is facing.

Gil (Owen Wilson), a writer struggling to finish his first novel, travels to Paris for a break away from his Hollywood life with his fiancée Inez (Rachel McAdams) and her parents, John (Kurt Fuller) and Helen (Mimi Kennedy). After arguing with his fiancée one night, Gil begins to roam the streets of Paris when an old-fashioned car pulls up and the passengers inside ask him to join them. Gil finds himself at what seems to be a 1920’s themed party, but he soon begins to recognise that the company around him consists of his literary and artistic idols, including that of F. Scott Fitzgerald (Tom Hiddleston), Zelda Fitzgerald (Alison Pill), Ernest Hemingway (Corey Stoll) and Gertrude Stein (Kathy Bates). Gil has been transported to the 1920s, an era which he admires and decides to return to at midnight every night in order to find inspiration for his novel, and maybe something a little more from the stunning Adriana (Marion Cotillard).

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Let The Hunt Begin

(Published on Falmouth Navigator and in my student newspaper Flex, on Page 9)

As the new year commences, it’s time for students to start looking for accommodation away from the halls that have been central to uni life for the past months. Charlie Derry discusses the highs and lows of living off campus and the important features to look for when house hunting this term.

It may only be the star of term two, but this is the time of year that you should be sat trawling the accommodation list with your potential housemates, searching for the perfect house to live in next year. But what exactly should you be looking for when you’re spending weeks on end viewing house after house? And who do you go to if you if you’re having trouble finding somewhere to live?

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The Importance of Social Networking

(Published in my student newspaper Flex, on Page 11.)

I’d like to say that we’re not all obsessed with social networking sites, but I think it’s more accurate to say that we are.

It started off on Bebo when we were 10, before switching to Myspace when we started wearing skinny jeans. Now the place to be is Facebook, and for those who feel their opinions are worthy to more than just their university friends, there’s Twitter. So why are our lives so heavily focused around these sites? And why, as university students, do we find them so useful?

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No Cuts Down In Pasty Town

(Published in my student newspaper Flex on Page 3.)

Around 52,000 students took over the streets of London in protest against education cuts and rise in tuition fees yesterday.

One hundred and fifty students from University College Falmouth joined others in the national Demolition protest on Wednesday 10th November, making it the biggest protest against the review so far.

“Today, we have taken to the streets of London in unprecedented numbers on the biggest student demonstration this century to tell politicians that enough is enough,” said the President of NUS, Aaron Porter. “This is the fight of our lives.”

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A Riot Too Far

(Published in my university student newspaper Flex, on Page 6).

The work of 50,000 demonstrators in the student fees protest is overshadowed as a violent group of protestors cause a riot at the Tory HQ.

A group of demonstrators broke into the Millibank building after yesterday’s protest, smashing in the windows and setting fire to banners outside, turning what was a peaceful protest turned into a violent riot.

One protestor threw a fire extinguisher off the roof of the building. It has been reported that they may now face a charge for attempted murder.

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The Reality Of Experimenting With Drugs at University

(Published in my student newspaper Flex, on Page 9, and on The National Student.)

As September’s Hollyoaks focuses on a group of Freshers and the effects that drugs can have, what is the reality of experimenting with drugs whilst at university?

A fresh start and, for most, a new home miles away from the towns we grew up in. As a new year at university begins, we will be faced with many challenging situations related to drugs. But we must ask, is the 5 minute buzz really worth it?

Drug use amongst young people is on the increase. The majority of drug related deaths and injuries come from a lack of understanding of the effects and what to do if something goes wrong. But nobody can simply say, “Don’t take drugs!” and expect a response, especially at a university age when the chance to experiment is now.

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