The Dark Knight Rises – Review – No Spoliers

As much as I would love to chat endlessly about what happens in The Dark Knight Rises I am not going to be that person that ruins the film for someone but if you do want to chat about it add me on twitter: @glampire_x.  My excitement for this film cannot even be expressed.  I booked tickets for the Imax a month in advance and I was standing outside the building for 9.30 on the Friday morning.  The Imax did not open until 10 and the film was not until 12 but I got one of the best seats in the house – back row almost centred.  Have any of you been to the Imax? This was my first time in the Glasgow one and I was amazed at the size of the screen.  I would highly recommend making the effort to go – especially if it is a film you have been excited about.  The Hobbit is the next big film to be shown at the Imax and my boyfriend is wanting to book tickets already.

As I expected the film would be it was exceptional.  Actually it exceeded my expectations and set my heart beating rapidly throughout the film.  The atmosphere created by Nolan throughout the film is outstanding.  It is by no means a chilled out film.  For a film near on three hours long you would think it would be challenge to keep the audience captivated but I could have sat and watched it again.  The guys I was in the queue with had booked tickets for the showing after also – they had the right idea.

I have heard people say ‘they knew was going to happen’ but I doubt they saw everything coming.  It keeps you on your toes to say the least and managed to have me happy, anxious and sad – by the end of the film I was emotionally exhausted.  The cast played a big part in this though without the right casting the film would not have been what it was.

Christian Bale really exceeded himself as Batman and brought a whole new vulnerability to the character.  At the end of The Dark Knight he starts to shed his ego but I had no idea that the human quality of batman would be brought to the level that it was in The Dark Knight Rises. If you loved Batman before this film you will leave the film with more love and respect for him than you have ever had.

A lot of people had doubts about Anne Hathaway as Catwoman but I always felt that after seeing her in Tim Burtons Alice in Wonderland that she would be good at the part.  She can play the frosty woman with issues perfectly but there is still a softness to her character.  I was also a fan of the Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman but I feel this catwoman was easier to understand especially to the modern woman.  You can understand why she did what she did and you respected her for managing to keep herself together. The previous film versions of Catwoman have not managed to keep themselves as together and have been rather flippant.

Catwoman was the character I was most excited about but there is no doubt that Tom Hardy as Bane and Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Detective John Blake stole the show.  There has been a growing interest in Hardy’s career over the last couple of years but he is not an actor I have paid that much attention to simply because his typical genre of film are not in my immediate interests. If people did not take an interest before now though they certainly will after seeing the film.  I have heard people comparing Tom Hardy’s Bane to the Heath Ledger Joker but I think it is unfair to do that as the characters are very different in personality and how they were portrayed.  Although the Joker had his bad qualities I never felt him as much of a threat to Batman nor did he scare me but Bane does both of these things. Bane is in short a monster.

Although Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s character is not one of the top three main characters he shines throughout the film and I hope that his performance is noted when it comes to awards time.

Of course the original Dark Knight characters of Michael Caine as Alfred, Gary Oldman as Commissioner Gordon and Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox were amazing as always and all contribute greatly to the plot and emotional feel of the movie in their own separate ways.

All in all the movie is fantastic and is a must see for anyone who en need joys film but if you’re a batman fan I don’t need to tell you that for you will have already seen it.

What did you think of it?

Glampire.

xx

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TRESemme – Split Mend Treatment – Review

This was another sample I received from Latest in Beauty and it is one that I have seen about the blogsphere over the last couple of weeks.

When it comes to shampoo TRESemme is not a brand I like based on the stupid reason that I like to change my shampoo frequently and TRESemme comes in massive bottles.  It also like a heavily scented shampoo and Tresemme has that typical shampoo scent. However I was very pleased with all three products in the sample.  I was surprised.

The range is said to repair split ends up and an up to 80% reduction in split ends after 3 uses. I only got two uses so sadly I cannot become part of that statistic but I did think highly of all three products which you will see below.

“Retain that freshly cut look and feel for longer with TRESemme Split Remedy”.

1. Split Mend Shampoo – a lovely creamy shampoo which actually smells great. It has been years since I have used TRESemme and I was wrong to brand them a boring scentless shampoo.  I don’t know about you all think but I always think that a shampoo with a creamy consistency works better? Or at least feels nicer when  washing your hair. I feel some shampoos can feel like you are washing your hair with soap.

2.  Much like the shampoo the Split Mend Conditioner is great.  I was initially worried that I would not get a good test out of it as it came in those little sachet samples and I have thick long hair but the conditioner is so rich that the sachet was more than enough.  I used conditioner all over my hair and not just the roots and I could have easily got away with using 3/4 of the sachet.  This alone makes me pro-TRESemme as I am forever running out of conditioner before shampoo but with TRESemmme I might not face that problem.  I am sure I am not the only one that faces that problem every month.  I had to run out yesterday and buy a random bottle of conditioner so I can use up all my odd bottles of shampoo. You would think someone would have the brains to make the conditioner bottle bigger than the shampoo.

3. This is where the magic really happens – Split Mend and Protect Leave in Treatment.  Although the shampoo and conditioner as good I was not entirely convinced that they done anything to my split ends up this one certainly did something to my hair. This is the first time I have ever used a leave in treatment and being brutally honest I felt like I had jumped into that famous scene in ‘There’s Something About Mary’. Once I had got past laughing at that and the treatment had soaked into my hair all was good.  I always dried my hair not long after putting the treatment on so I am unsure if it would have worked better if I had just left my hair to dry naturally.  The results after drying were soft and voluminous hair but my hair did feel thick and you could feel the product on it.  I do not wash my hair every day and if you were to use this every time you washed your hair you would need to start washing your hair every day but my hair did look great.  For nights out this is a must if you have limp hair like mine.  Anyone with thinner hair tried this?

Overall I rate the Split Remedy collection highly and once I have some cash I will be investing in the full size bottles so I will no doubt review this again after using it for a longer period of time. Anything is worth a shot as far as split ends go and getting your hair cut these days is not cheap either so in the long run it could potentially save you some cash but lets not get too ahead of ourselves.

No Doubt about it. They are back.

No Doubt have finally returned on to the scene after a whopping ten year hiatus which makes me feel really old.  I was aged ten or eleven when, Rock Steady, the last No Doubt album came out and I have been a fan of the band ever since. For me the upcoming album Push and Shove is the album of not only the summers end but the album of the year.

Ten years No Doubt fans have been waiting which is a long time when you realise that I wasn’t even a teenager when the last record came out and now I am in my twenties. My whole high school and university career.

There was of course Gwen Stafani’s solo work but that was not up to everyone’s taste.  I personally loved her first solo album but the second one felt a little too main stream R&B for my personal taste. I did enjoy seeing Stefani expressing herself musically and extending her interest in fashion though.  She is someone who has been a style icon of mine for years.  I used to cut pictures of her out my girls magazines and put them on my wall. Being a small brunette there is not much that she wears that I could actually pull off but I enjoy looking at her.  Not in a perverted way more in the way you would admire a work of art.

However back to the point – the new single.  The opening notes of the song appear to show the combined styles of Stefani’s solo work and No Doubts most modern sound.  Judging from this single the band have steered closely to the reggae style featured on Rock Steady.

The reggae beats are sure to make this song a summer anthem among fans and I hope that it will recruit some new younger fans to the No Doubt camp.  It is amazing to know that there will be girls around the age I was when Rock Steady came out that will love this. It would be great to see girls looking up a strong front woman like Gwen Stefani rather than the likes of Selena Gomez.

So GET IN LINE and buy the album in September.

You will also find this review at:  http://www.middlemusic.net/

Italian Parmesan Chicken

Here is a simple yet extremely yummy recipe and one that will impress those near and dear.  If I got a call form Come Dine With Me tomorrow this is what I would make. Usually I can be a bit of a disaster master in the kitchen.  There was once an occasion where I messed up simple chocolate rice crispy cakes.  If I am not getting the recipe wrong I am leaving them in too long and cremating them. What I love the most about this recipe is that there is no measurements to follow.  Well I’m sure there will be somewhere but for the one below I advise to just go with what you feel.  You know how many people you are cooking for and how much chicken and veg you will need.
The best thing about the recipe is that a lot of prep can be done the night before.  The cheese could be grated and all the veg pre-chopped.  Making it a very quick meal.  The bit that takes the longest is all the chopping and if you eliminate that – quick yet tasty dinner. 
Ingredients:
  • Chicken or Turkey.  Turkey has less calories if you are watching your weight. 
  • Tub of breadcrumbs or your own home-made if you can be bothered.
  • Parmigiana (aka parmesan cheese).
  • One egg.
  • One pepper.
  • One chilli.
  • One onion.
  • A tin of chopped tomato’s.
  • Tomato purée.
  • Mixed herbs.
  • Garlic Salt.
Step 1.  Grate your cheese – judge it on how many people you are cooking for but you need quite a lot for the coating to have flavour.  Mixed the grated cheese into a bowl with breadcrumbs and add some garlic salt and mixed herbs.  Garlic salt is a bit stronger than natural garlic so go easy on it. 

Step 2:  Chop your meat up into pieces if it is not pre-chopped.

Step 3. Mix an egg into a mug.

Step 4. Use a pastry brush to coat the chicken in egg and then dip into the bowl and cover with the breadcrumbs. Coat the bottom of the dish you are going to cook the meat in with some oil. I have a silicone pastry brush and it is really good.  Received that one courtesy of Victoria Sponge Pease Pudding – someone who does professional food blogging with measurements and such.

Step 5. Once you have covered all the meat pour excess breadcrumbs over the top and place in the over at 230 degrees for around 30 minutes.  I would check after 20 to make sure it is not burning but double check the chicken is pink in the middle after 30.

Step 6.  Empty the tin of tomato’s into a saucepan on a low temperature.  Dice the onion and add the sauce and turn up to a medium heat.  Then chop up the pepper and the chilli – remember to de-seed and wash your hands straight after.

Step 7.  Whilst the chicken cooks leave the sauce to cook and you can ever turn the temperature up a bit if you want the veg more soft than with a bite.  If by the time the meat is cooked the sauce looks a bit thin then add some tomato purée to thicken the sauce.

Step 8.  I served this dish with some mashed potato but it is really up to you what you serve it with.  It would be completely fine to have it on its own too as it is really filling.

If you do decide to try this out let me know how you get on.  You’ll be surprised at how simple it is.

Batman Nails For The Release of The Dark Knight Rises

It is finally here! The release of The Dark Knight Rises.  I haven’t been this excited about a film since Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides.  Tickets are booked for 12 at the Imax cinema tomorrow and then I am going a Batman Night at my favourite rock club where you get in for free if you are dressed up.  I have decided to channel a Bat-girl sort of look hence the nails:





I used: Nails Inc – Tavistock Street which I have already reviews in my post Back in the New Black
Models Own – Nail Art Pen and Barry M Lemon Ice Cream.


To create this effect:  Firstly paint your full nail with Tavistock Street (or any other grey polish) but I like the darkness of Tavistock Street. Secondly line the tips of your nails with Lemon Ice Cream once Tavistock Street has fully dried – even paint the grey the night before like I did. It will take a good couple of coats of Lemon Ice Cream to cover the grey but try and not put the polish on too thickly.  Once all has dried draw a black line across where the two colours meet with the models own nail art pen.


The most important thing about this look is waiting for the polishes all to dry which can be annoying if you are impatient like I am.  I was going to try and draw little bats but although the nail art pen is good because it is a long narrow brush it can be hard to have good control with it.  Can anyone recommend another nail art pen?


I bought Lemon Ice Cream by Barry M two summers ago and it does not look good on my nails when on its own.  I end up looking diseased.  If you have pale skin like me I would stay clear of it unless you want to try the above out or do multicoloured nails a lot.


I would also like to try out Robin themed nails at some point.  Keep your eyes pealed for my review of the film next week. Anyone else excited about it?



Splish Splash I was Taking a Bath – The Rules of Bathing

All day today I have been having issues with my neck, back and shoulders, especially my right one which does not help when you want to get down to blogging, so I done what any girl does when she’s in pain and went for a bath.  I apologise to  my friend over at The Beauty Fiend who does not have a bath for I know this post will pain her.

During my bath I started to make a list of complaints in my head about my current bathing experience so naturally I have decided to compose a list of rules for having a happy bathing experience. It has been a while since I have composed a list and I am starting to suspect that is what is wrong with my life at the moment.  I am a girl that plans to plan.

1.  Make sure your bath is warm enough.  I usually put the hot water boost on twice just to ensure that the water is super warm.  A luke warm bath will completely kill your mood and if you were in a bad mood before entering the bath you will be an even unhappier bunny when leaving the bathroom.


2.  Now you have your water warm hope there is enough water for a deep bath.  I need my bath to be as full as possible, just before the water starts pouring over the sides, otherwise I spend my time looking at my wobbly tummy and thinking about how much weight I need to lose.  If you are lucky enough being a skinny minnie this might not bother you as much.


3.  In line with no.2 – Candles.  I cannot go for a bath with the lights on.  I get creeped out just thinking about having to deal with my naked body for that length of time.  Plus candles set a nice relaxing atmosphere, especially if they are nice scented ones.  See my July favourites review for my candle of the moment. 

4.  On the subject of smelling nice – you will need a good bubble bath or bath bomb and you are lucky my next beauty post is one an awesome bath bomb.  I joke but it is worth checking out just because the bath bomb is amazing.  It is from Lush – enough said.


5.  Take a book, magazine or music in with you.  I struggle to spend any length of time in the bath without having something to occupy me. Attention span of a fish – which is ironic considering fish spend their whole lives in water. Just don’t drop your MP3 player in the bath,I have done this in the past, doing that will shoot the last four relaxing rules to shizz and make you splash about like Jawz is attacking.

6.  Most people would leave this at No.5 but I am an even number kind of girl. Anyone else suffer from this?  Keep your towel near the bath because if you wash your face you are going to want to dry it to prevent getting soapy matter in your eyes.  I done this today and had to lean right over the bath to retrieve my towel which no doubt looked ridiculous but also hurt my shoulders further. 

So there you go six ways to get the best out of your bath and although they are pretty obvious sometimes we don’t always do the obvious.  Well I don’t – ask anyone that knows me.  I often do things the hard way and then get confused about it.

Download 2012 – Sunday Review – 10/06/2012

After four days of rain I had came to the conclusion that God simply did not like Rock n Roll and that it really was the music of Satan after all but it would appear that he was simply waiting for Black Sabbath before he allowed the sun to come out from behind the clouds.  It was anything but a black Sabbath.

I had spent four says complaining about the weather and I came home with sunburn.  Hilarious.  Sunday was the day I had been waiting for as I have spent years waiting to see Ozzy Osbourne since the last time I was scheduled to see him he had his accident. Super excited but I also seen some other great bands whilst waiting for the all mighty conclusion to Download 2012.

Heavens Basement


I didn’t see as much of this band as I wanted to since they were on early at 12.30 on the Sunday and the other slot they had earlier that weekend clashed with someone else but what I did see and hear was great.  I first seen this band supporting Papa Roach in Glasgow after much hype from friends who are fans of the band.  They impressed me then and I have been trying to follow the band since.  If you enjoy glam metal then get them added to your summer playlist.

Sabastian Bach


To hear hits like Youth Gone Wild and 18 and Life was exhilarating.  I have been a Skid Row fan for a while  not a hardcore fan but an admirer of their music and to hear the original lead singer was great. Mr Bach gave old songs a new lease of life and boy does he look great for his age.  It is hard for a girl to resist a classic rockstar when they aren’t too washed up looking. No disrespect  to Johnny Sollinger the current vocalist for Skidrow but it is always good to see an original. 

Lamb of God


I never thought I’d be a Lamb of God fan but their last album Resolution grew on me and with my manfriend being a big fan of the band and rushing down to the pits I decided to give the band a chance live.  I would usually walk on by making the statement that the band are too heavy for my taste but parking my ass on the grass and watching them from a distance was enjoyable.  Being far back from the crowd gives the benefit of being able to see the crowd and the crowd looked like they were having a fantastic time and I know from talking to people afterwards that it was one of the highlights of the weekend.  It is just a shame that a couple of weeks later lead singer Randy Blythe being imprisoned for allegedly attacking a fan in Prague which later led to the fans death.  There seems to have been a ton of support from the global Lamb of God fan base though.


Megadeth


This would be another band that the manfriend got me into after being made go see them at Sonisphere last year and I was really surprised at how much I enjoyed the band. Their style was completely different from what I had initially thought.  Tracks like A Tout Le Monde and Symphony of Destruction really excel live and of course there is ‘MegaDave’ who has cut his hair from the last time I seen him.





Black Sabbath

The highlight of my weekend and the band I came to Download to see.  If they hadn’t been playing on the Sunday I would have probably packed my bags and got out of the muddy hell of the camp-site.  Black Sabbath made the suffering in the mud and rain worth it though.  I have been waiting to see Ozzy Osbourne for years and with my age of 21 it is fairly obvious that I got into Black Sabbath because of the TV programme ‘At Home With the Osbournes’.  It was worth the wait though and the atmosphere was amazing.  The band and Ozzy were on top form.  Seeing Ozzy running about the stage and smiling like the crazy man he is was indescribable and it is now firmly on my top ten live gig moments.  They played all the hits the crowd wanted including Fairies Wear Boots, Snow Blind, War Pigs and finished with Paranoid.  But of course they also played Iron Man and the Iron Man himself Tony Iommi looked a picture of health and played as well as he has always done.  He done the band and the fans proud. 




To finish up with one of the greatest classic rock tracks in the form of  Paranoid was an excellent way to end the greatest rock festival. Download Festival 2012 – 10 Years of Download. 


Here’s to the next ten and no rain next years.  Who are you all wanting to see next year? 

Tits and Zitz

For pretty much half of my life I have had acne which is medically categorised as a skin disease which seems a bit over the top but I suppose there are much worse cases of acne than mine but it was really bad when I was younger.  I started my period when I was nine years old so I experienced physically being a teenager before most of my friends did.  I had big boobs and acne.  If my face wasn’t covered in disgusting red dots I would have probably been considered a hottie for the tits alone but instead I became a bully victim because of the zits.

‘Bully’ is one of those words that when people use it they either give you an understanding look or they look at you like you’re exaggerating.  The bullying started at primary school and continued to secondary. The bullying never told a physical form but sometimes I wish it had.  At times I convinced myself it would have been easier than the mental torment.  I still have self-confidence issues in regards to my skin till this day.  I feel very uncomfortable going outside not wearing make-up or even being around some friends not wearing it.  It is rare that I will go outside not wearing any and when I do I feel very paranoid. I know this does not make me special in any way as loads of girls feel like this but it can be good to share experiences and if it helps make someone not feel like an alien then my job is done.

The worst thing about being bullied about something physical or indeed something else that is happening in your life such as family is that half the time it is true.  I could’t deny I had terrible skin.  It was not only staring me in the face but all over my face and it hurt.  Both my face and the bullying.

Here is one of my favourite posts on the subject of acne and from someone who has a shittier time of it than me: Scars by Dr Brooke Magnanti but you might know her better as Belle De Jour.

But back to the point – the reason I bring this up is because of the state of my skin right now and it reminds me of how crap a time I went through as an adolescent and it pisses me off that at 21 I am still dealing with it.

My skin did clear up for a couple of years – at age 14 I got put on Dianette which is a contraceptive pill but it is one that is very good for clearing up acne.  So good that I have heard of men being prescribed it.  If anyone reading this has particularly bad skin I would look into this.  I then got took off that pill for being on it too long and my current pill has never helped my skin. Well that combined with an underactive-thyroid which means my hormones are everywhere. As if gaining two and a half stone was not bad enough. They should really rename hypo-thyroidism ‘ugly illness’. Ok, slightly dramatic but it certainly is not something that makes you better looking.

I cleanse, I tone, I moisturise and I have prescribed cream from the doctor but nothing is helping me at the moment.  Since age nine I have been searching for the miracle product and I still have no found it so I thought I would ask on here on the odd chance that someone else has battled acne for the majority of their life and has been lucky enough to find this miracle product.

The cream I was prescribed off the doctors is called DUAC cream and it is very good but it just is not working for me at the moment but if you suffer from random breakouts I would go ask for some of this it should clear your skin up in a couple of weeks. However it also has a tendency to dry out your skin so pile a thick moisturiser on at bedtime.

If I had some photo’s I would show you’s but I actually do not have any digital photo’s from my youth and I wonder why this does not bother me.

Much Love,

Glampire

xx

Bio-Oil VS Stretch Marks

I done a post a while back about whether Rescue or Cocoa Butter was any good for easing the appearance of stretch marks before I had tried the more expensive alternative of Bio-Oil.

A couple of months ago I was diagnosed with Hashimotos which is an autoimmune disease but you will probably know it better as a type of under-active thyroid.  This lovely disease has made me gain two and a half stone in weight and therefore a lot of stretch marks.  My doctor failed to take note when I said I was rapidly gaining weight and I didn’t know why – so it took six months before another doctor actually believed that I wasn’t just fat and took blood tests. It is amazing how much damage six months can do.

This is just a small example of what I am dealing with – marks like that are right across my stomach on to my hips and extend from my pubic bone to just above my belly button.  I have some other stretching on my boobs and arms.  I am also pretty sure I am not getting them on my legs.  Not only are the marks unsightly and much cause for me crying myself to sleep but they itch like hell.  I can’t go a day without putting something on them whether that be Bio-oil or just a moisturiser. The Bio-oil certainly helps with itching.

When you look at that photo it is probably not going to convince you that bio-oil works but it has eased off some of my earliest stretch marks and the reason I reckon it has not made a dent on the ones above is because my body is continuing to gain weight regardless of what I do. If you look you can see some of the marks are lighter at the bottom than the top.  I don’t think it has helped me much with stopping stretch marks from appearing though but it might once my body stops gaining weight.

It has been the best product I have used for stretch-marks so far though and on less severe cases of stretch marks I am certain it would work wonders.  Any one else struggling with stretch marks due to illness?

5/5

I am currently awaiting samples of Betty Hula’s Stretch Mark Oil – so I will get a review of this to compare with Bio-Oil once it arrives.

Shot Gun Harbour – The Cover-Up

Shotgun Harbour is a band that you could say was formed by fate. Formed in August of 2009, Shotgun Harbour started off with a bang, immediately grabbing an audience throughout the Southeast. Since then, the band has seen a few members come and go, but one thing has remained constant; their passion for music.
“Music is our life. It’s what has driven us all along to be what we are today. We want to share our music with the world. We want to leave our mark on this world, and show others the passion music can bring.” says bassist Jordan Lloyd.
Their album The Cover Up has received great reviews all round and I am not going to be the one to say otherwise – fantastic album.  Recorded by highly acclaimed recording engineeer, Daryl Phenneger (The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, Evergreen Terrace, Yellowcard, Puddle of Mudd) the boys from the South have captured a sound that has propelled them forward.  I hope one day the sound propels them as far as the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe so I and other fans in the UK can experience all the band has got to give live.
The album is a mere six tracks long, which is the only disappointing aspect to the album. The six tracks left me wanting more. However, the band, which includes Blaine Dickinson (Lead Guitar), Brock Dickinson (Vocals), Jordan Lloyd (Bass), Justin Monds (Rhythm Guitar), and Matt Braddock (Drums), are currently working on a new full-length project. Daryl Phenneger will be taking the helm with the recording.
I had absolutely no qualms that the full-length album will be amazing as from judging the high quality vocals and the intricate music on The Cover-Up.
The guitar is particularly noteworthy on the title track.  “The Cover-Up” boasts groovy guitar riffs and smooth vocals.  It is akin to style of blues rock band Clutch. “The Cover Up” is definitely stand out song on the album and the guitar solo near the end of the song just completes it.
All the tracks have a great southern feel to them which makes this album perfect for the summer – especially if you live in the UK, like I, where all it has done is rain all summer. There is nothing like a little bit of southern rock n’roll to transport you, by mind, to somewhere brighter for 25 minutes.
The album boosts a mix of tracks with the groovy “The Cover Up” and “Public Enemy” to the soulful “Date Late Friend” and “I Am Here”.
If you like bands like Shinedown and Staind but want to listen to something fresh in a genre that can get a little colourless at times then hit the download button on Shotgun Harbour.