Food Review: Lamb Adobo (Brique)

If you’ve just been eating the same old meat like pork, beef and chicken for a lengthy period now, many times, it would be a welcome respite to have something else..

Not just goat meat, or carabeef but say ‘lamb’ — the favorite food in the Bible. And so we did when we dined at Brique in Ayala Center.

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This was the lamb adobo that we had. Ok, t’was reasonably priced.

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Looking closely tho, all it really had were some leeks and garlic — not even the usual oiliness of adobo could be found which was good, at least in regards to the oil as it became sort of healthy..

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Other than that, well. Frankly, the dish was bland — even with some renown sauce added to it — it was still bland. While the meat could have something to do with its taste, guess it was just a poor recipe.

Brique could have improved on it by adding some herbs and spices, yeah, along with some garnishings — like spinach, lettuce or even tomatoes. Even if it may look like a burger, at least its got flavor.

More so, missing out on so many of their drinks listed on their menu was just a little too upsetting, that it was kinda funny already.

Anyway, if only for the ambiance, t’was okay — yes, the service, too.

Movie Review: The Mummy (2017)

Did you miss Ethan Hunt? Well, he’s back! Nope, not in Mission Impossible but in The Mummy — the impregnable Tom Cruise that is, and this time as Nick Morton. So get ready!

The Synopsis. Nick Morton is a soldier of fortune who plunders ancient sites for timeless artifacts and sells them to the highest bidder. When Nick and his partner come under attack in the Middle East, the ensuing battle accidentally unearths Ahmanet, a betrayed Egyptian princess who was entombed under the desert for thousands of years. With her powers constantly evolving, Morton must now stop the resurrected monster as she embarks on a furious rampage through the streets of London.

While Tom’s youthful looks and daring stunts still amazes many, of course, there are those who would just base things on his age — which is actually absurd! Hey, if Tom could still do it without looking awkward or something, then just roll the dice!

Still, one thing is apparent tho. The story line. It’s just so common.

The Mummy (played by Sofia Boutella)

A free spirit accidentally wakes up some mummy then chaos follows. Thus, what then would be left to watch as the film has become even more predictable? The cast? The action scenes? The effects? The setting, the makeups?

Well, that doesn’t sound so encouraging. T’is just like t’was filmed for a quick buck which incidentally made a killing — but understandably, not as much as Wonder Woman though. Guess the injecting of Dr. Jekyll with a serum to prevent himself from transforming into his evil alter-ego was kinda dreary and not so good for the film then.

Tom Cruise and Annabelle Wallis

The choice of actors as well as the effects were, well, okay though — but still not enough ‘mummy power’ to be a game changer.

Cocktail: How to Make a Planter’s Punch

Well, let’s start off the month with another summer cocktail — the Planter’s Punch! With the sweetness in Grenadine syrup plus the tartness of citrus in fruit juices and lime, hey, this is like drinking some mixed fruit shake at a mall, huh?!

But of course, there’s more to this cocktail than just fruits — that’s why it’s listed as a cocktail — so let’s first see how it’s done.

Oh, don’t be overwhelmed by the speed of the bartender in making this drink. You could go over the video, anyway. And also, if you are wondering why some Planter’s Punches are reddish or what, this is because of the dark rum — otherwise, it’s in its variations.

Basic Ingredients

Interesting here would be the stirring. I mean, if only for the drink to be immediately cold upon serving, bartenders put ice even before the rum and juices are mixed. Then again, this also dilutes the cocktail beforehand that’s why, and so..

Planter’s Punch

You got a perfect summer drink. A sweet and tarty punch!

Movie Review: King Arthur – Legend of the Sword (2017)

Time for another movie. And this time we bring you King Arthur: Legend of the Sword which stars Charlie Hunnam, Eric Bana and Jude Law. Well, specially if you have not seen the film, it’s always good to know the ‘rundown’ to better understand the story.

The Synopsis. After the murder of his father, young Arthur’s power-hungry uncle Vortigern seizes control of the crown. Robbed of his birthright, he grows up the hard way in the back alleys of the city, not knowing who he truly is. When fate leads him to pull the Excalibur sword from the stone, Arthur embraces his true destiny to become a legendary fighter and leader.

What can we say, eh? Sword and sandal films are always eagerly awaited, but of course not all of them are really that exciting to watch. Even from a movie-goers point of view, some of them simply lacks the drama. For instance, in Kevin Costner’s Robinhood Prince of Thieves — remember that scene when he shot a ‘burning’ arrow? The closeup and everything. That was dramatic!

How about Mel Gibson’s Braveheart when he was like tortured during execution? And then Mel shouting ‘freedom’ all the more. That was dramatic!

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Jude Law as Vortigern

But in this version of King Arthur, hmm, there wasn’t really that great a scene that made a mark for more ’emotional’ audiences. The fighting scenes and all were just, what, close to ordinary — while the most dramatic was only when Arthur killed a throng of enemies in one swoop through the Excalibur’s power. Or when he was able to pull out the sword from the rock that left him fainted.

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The ‘pulling’ out of the Excalibur should have been more dramatic

Perhaps the cam shots were just bit muddled or somehow lacked the angles, and fact is, a handful of their conversations were also kinda hurried — as in, it’s shown in split screens. So how could there be drama in that?

How ’bout the giant snake, like how come it roared like a lion, huh? See, a monstrous effect could have been all the more effective if things are more realistic. And adding some twists to versions is understandable — no problem — but it shouldn’t be too soiled, otherwise, just change the title.

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Success of Kings are greatly influenced by mages back then

Anyway, whether summer or whenever, it’s always fun to see a movie — and it doesn’t really have to be in theatres to enjoy it. Nor should you watch them at YouTube, it would only make your connection slower and consume a lot of data from your provider like if you’re in some plan. Still, if you couldn’t buy ’em then rent. Enjoy!

Movie Review: The Covenant (2017)

If you like horror flicks, we suppose that you must have checked out The Covenant that starred Monica Engesser, Owen Conway and Clint James recently. Yeah, never mind if you don’t know ‘em actors, it’s a low-budget film anyway. Ohh.

So, should we assume then that the film was a bust? Well, maybe you should check out the trailer first if it interests you — then we could somehow say if it was really a failure.

The Synopsis. After the tragic deaths of her husband and daughter, Sarah Doyle moves back to her childhood home with her estranged brother, Richard. It’s not long before Sarah begins to experience supernatural phenomena of a violent and hostile nature. Bewildered and desperate, Richard enlists the aid of a paranormal investigator who confirms that Sarah has become possessed by a powerful demon. Together, the three men will go to battle to save Sarah’s soul.

Like the synopsis? How ‘bout the trailer? Actually the acting, the story and all was kind of dry — and guess it does not really have anything to do with the budget (unless these actors are amateurs) but it’s simply the result of having too common a story in ‘being possessed by evil’ and stuff.

Bath tub nightmares. Creepy basement. Giving birth to ‘evil’.

Monica Engesser (a.k.a. Sarah Doyle)

The makeup of Monica (a.k.a. Sarah) was good enough though, but the crumbling of the house was pretty fake. It went down like faster than you could even crush cookies, like the melting of ice cream. Still, just wished exorcists were given other ways to fight demons other than using holy water or reciting ‘Our Father’ — for those with ‘weak faith’ would just try to memorize such and go to church for the sake of going to church, you know.

Anyhow, the end of the story seemed to indicate that there would be a sequel. Think it would be interesting to hear some news first on how they would operate on this before rushing to cinemas.

Movie Review: Going In Style (2017)

If you’re looking for a movie that emphasizes the value of family and friendships then this is one of ‘em movies. Going In Style. And altho the movie stars three elder statesmen, the story is actually funny and heart-warming.

The Synopsis. Lifelong buddies Willie (Morgan Freeman), Joe (Michael Caine) and Albert (Alan Arkin) decide to buck retirement and step off the straight-and-narrow when their pension funds become a corporate casualty. Desperate to pay the bills and come through for their loved ones, the three men risk it all by embarking on a daring adventure to knock off the very bank that absconded with their money.

Like what you just saw? Guess, the oldies’ ‘slowness’ is what makes things funny; whilst their grip on life and values is what makes ’em admirable. Now for our lead characters, while Willie and Joe were cool, think Albert was the odd man out there. You know, his acting was kinda pale. But his side of the story gave us one thing, that having someone in life makes our existence more meaningful.

Anyway, tho life is led by our choices, these choices are sometimes presented in situations beyond our control — as if fate is teasing us, otherwise, simply calling us towards our life’s purpose.

From left: Morgan Freeman (a.k.a. Willie), Michael Caine (a.k.a. Joe) and Alan Arkin (a.k.a. Albert)

And that’s what happened to friends — Willie, Joe and Albert — good citizens who worked their way to retirement only to find out that they can not really expect anything from their pension funds. All because of their bank. With basic needs, illnesses and bills to pay at an old age — that’s stressful!

If it were you, what would you do?

This is not to defend or condemn what ‘em three friends did but they just did what they had to do. Get back at the bank. Still, we have to go with the right choices. And this is simply a reminder that life is unpredictable and so, we got to be ready for eventualities and yes, treasure our relationships. For at the end of the day, its these relationships that would help us pull through in life.

Lifelong partners’ Annie and Albert

Don’t be worried of growing old. That’s life. But be scared of karma. For while there are consequences to what we do, karma may not come in the form that you expect it would.

Hold on to virtues. Share your blessings. Value what really matters.

Movie Review: Before I Fall (2017)

We got another low budget film here in Before I Fall but this one did well though not as prominently as known Hollywood blockbusters. Anyhow, the film stars Zoey Deutch with a good story line to boot.

The Synopsis. Samantha Kingston (Zoey Deutch) seems to have it all: popularity, a loving boyfriend (Kian Lawley) and a seemingly perfect future. Everything changes in the blink of an eye when she dies in a car crash but then magically wakes up to find herself reliving the same day over and over again. As Samantha tries to untangle the mystery of a life derailed, she must also unravel the secrets of the people closest to her and discover how the power of a single day can make a difference.

Understandably so, many of those who have seen the movie didn’t really like the ending. Sam died. Yes, after a day in her life that she had to relive over and over again, in the end, it was only her death that was needed to end the loop. Then again, it’s still one movie that’s worth watching.

A lot of lessons.

One. While youth is many times about adventure and fun, hey, you do not just bully someone just because you find ‘em different from you, or just for the fun of it. You want power? Bullying is not it but simply a sign of insecurity. Think about it.

Two. Life is temporary. This immortal truth has always stared us in the face time and again but still, most of us lives life as if we own our time. As if we own the world. Could it be what we call ‘youthful innocence’? Remember, not everything fun is good. Life has its consequences — and it doesn’t matter if you’re young and healthy, or rich and famous — life is still temporary.

Three. Mistakes can be made up for — but fate can not. If it’s your time, it’s your time. Regardless. Thus, it would be best for our souls to sincerely be good. Always. And this is not just about not harming others — but about helping whenever possible. Not just about ‘living life to the fullest’ but about living in accordance with God’s words.

If we do these then there would be nothing to regret about.

Zoey Deutch a.k.a. Sam

Four. Emotional support is actually what keeps us going — whether coming from family, friends or a partner — depending on whom you value. Since life is temporary, happiness and success is therefore about finding that inspiration. Have you ever thought that life could have been different if you have not met that one person?

In the end, we live for a purpose.

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