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Transformers: Age of Extinction

Transformers: Age of Extinction starring Mark Wahlberg


The first time I saw a movie trailer for this film I thought, “Hell yeah!” I’m almost sure everyone remembers the Transformers. Mark Wahlberg is, of course, hot and one of my favorite actors. And, the special effects and action scenes are righteous. Last night I had the pleasure of watching the full length movie, which is just over 2 1/2 hours long. Although the action does pick up fairly soon in the beginning the movie starts off kind of dull. I especially didn’t care for the early scenes between actor Mark Wahlberg and actress Nicola Peltz who plays Wahlberg’s teenage daughter. Their relationship as father and daughter just isn’t believable. Wahlberg, in real life, is 43 years old and stands at about 5’8″. The two actors would have been better cast as love interests in my opinion. According to IMDb.com casting director credits go to Denise Chamian, Mickie Paskal and Jennifer Rudnicke but I’m honestly not sure who should take the heat for the film cast. After all this is a Steven Spielberg production and I have yet to see one of his films fall short. I guess there is a first time for everything because the casting in this instance honestly took away from a great body of work. Sources report that the three lead roles (Wahlberg, Pelka and the role of Pelka’s boyfriend played by actor Jack Reynor) are contracted to appear in the next three sequels. If you consider the fact that independently both Wahlberg and Peltz gave an excellent performance that could only mean that Executive Producer and Film Director Michael Bay dropped the ball on this one. It has yet to be announced whether or not Bay will return to direct a future Transformers production. Not that it really matters to me (I never agree with their ratings) but when the movie was released late June 2014 it received poor reviews from film critics, ranking at only 18% on Rotten Tomatoes and making it the lowest ranked film of the Transformers franchise. Transformers: Age of Extinction turned out to be a hit at the box office and grossed over $1 billion worldwide. Where I can agree with film critics about this movie is with their great appreciation for the performances that Mark Wahlberg, Kelsey Grammer and Stanley Tucci delivered as well as the outstanding visual effects, and action sequences. — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transformers:_Age_of_Extinction

The action certainly makes up for the film’s few shortcomings. According to fxguide.com Transformers: Age of Extinction was a massive production. Much larger in scale than the first three films in the franchise. Age of Extinction required a bigger crew size, complex effects shots, higher quality stereo delivery and the shooting locations were more dynamic. In fact, it is the largest film production in the history of visual effects studio Industrial Light & Magic. ILM visual effects supervisor Scott Farrar is quoted saying that the Age of Extinction film was the “heaviest data wrangling picture I’ve ever done, the largest in ILM’s history. It was the largest crew I’ve ever had – 500 people. It was IMAX and 3D so you’re rendering twice as much at least. Our work is about 90 minutes worth of the movie.” — http://www.fxguide.com/featured/age-of-extinction-ilm-turns-up-its-transformers-toolset/

90 minutes worth of action packed visual wonder and amazement. All of the Transformers characters’ mechanics are visually intricate. The Autobots gang includes Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Hound, Drift, Crosshairs, Ratchet, Leadfoot and Brains. They each take on an extremely realistic human persona. Actor John Goodman is the voice of Hound, a chubby but nimble Autobot with a scruffy beard made of wire coils, nuts and bolts who chews on bullets as though they were cigars. Hound makes his debut in this film operating as the Autobots’ heavy artillery gunner. He transforms into an Oshkosh Defense Medium Tactical Vehicle. I really enjoyed his character. Hound cracks a lot of jokes, making light of an otherwise gloomy situation whenever he can and he is just a downright lovable guy. — http://screenrant.com/transformers-4-characters-autobots-decepticons-dinobots/

It is truly astounding the level of depth in robotic animation achieved in Transformers: Age of Extinction. The cinematography capturing the action sequence integration between the actual human cast and the digital renderings was nearly flawless. Admittedly, the making of this particular 3D IMAX film production was by far the largest undertaking for visual effects studio Industrial Light & Magic. Quite the handful by any standards. Don’t get me wrong, the visual effects were phenomenal. Unfortunately, they weren’t absolutely impeccable. Call me a knit-picking perfectionist. Perhaps the most difficult part of this creative process was the marrying of the actor’s takes and the digital animation. From what I was able to notice there are a couple of frames in the movie where both Mark Wahlberg’s and Jack Reynor’s stunt doubles were blatantly obvious. I found it distracting to the eye. I immediately became confused about which actor was in the scene. A little off-putting to the direction of the film plot. Overall, nothing major in that respect. Age of Extinction is definitely a movie the entire family will enjoy. If you are looking for a humorous, fast action, digitally high-tech movie with sweet rides I would highly recommend Transformers: Age of Extinction.  But don’t take my word for it, check out the movie trailer below then pick up your copy available on BLU-RAY™ , BLU-RAY 3D AND DIGITAL HD today!

 

“Autobots must escape sight from a bounty hunter who takes control of the human serendipity: Unexpectedly, Optimus Prime and his remaining gang turn to a mechanic and his daughter for help.” — http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2109248/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_8

 

Transformers: Age of Extinction TRAILER 1 (2014) – Mark Wahlberg Movie HD

Published on March 4 2014

Earth is scarred by the events of the past three movies, but is moving on after all the giant robots disappeared. Cade Yeager, an inventor, discovers a buried Transformer, which sets the stage for the return of the Autobots and Decepticons.

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One Night Abroad

One Night Abroad in Tanzania, Africa: Serengeti Plains – Serengeti National Park


We’re going on an African Safari in the Serengeti! Actually, this is part of Smartling’s One Night Abroad Project. Smartling is a small company that was founded in 2009 and is currently headquartered in New York City. Smartling’s cloud-based software platform streamlines the process of creating and delivering multilingual content to customers anywhere in the world. Essentially, Smartling is a company that translates websites. I was asked to plan in detail the ideal night abroad. Such as, how I personally would assimilate myself into a foreign culture using language, food, and fashion! I’ll need to fit in well so I’ll have to learn the culture, dress “appropriately,” breakdown any language barriers, make travel plans and choose a cuisine among other things. By creating these types of scenarios, I believe, Smartling is able to stay in touch with the world’s forever changing communication and interpretation variables. Smartling is also able to better accommodate clients when developing and marketing software technologies. I’ve decided to take Smartling along with me on the ideal perfect “One Night Abroad” in Africa!

I think it’s best to put, at least, your ego aside when traveling abroad and show some respect for cultural tradition. In Tanzania, where the Serengeti Plains are located, there is a diverse cultural background. Luckily, English is one of the official languages spoken in Tanzania along with Swahili. Kiswahili or Swahili is the official language, while English is considered the official primary language of commerce, administration, and higher education. Arabic is also widely spoken. Especially in Zanzibar which is known for its beautiful beaches. I happen to speak, read and write a number of secondary languages, and Arabic happens to be one that I’ve dabbled in. Enough to get me by let’s say… Typically when traveling in Africa a native will be assigned as guide who will accompany you everywhere. So language doesn’t seem to pose much of a problem. It’s probably best to learn a few common phrases and words anyway. Or have some sort of access to a travel dictionary or phrase book. Keep in mind there are also many other local languages. Religions will be the next thing to take into consideration. On the mainland the population is 30% Christian, 35% Muslim and 35% have indigenous beliefs. Zanzibar is more than 99% Muslim in population. Tanzania’s population totals at around 39 million. The currency used there is called a Tanzanian Shilling. The conversion rate is 1.00 TZS = 0.000597729 USD or 1 USD = 1,673.00 TZS. Which if my math is correct then one shilling is equal to much much less than a penny. Sounds like a pretty economical trip if I do say so myself. Tanzania’s climate is tropical due to its location just south of the equator in East Africa bordering the Indian Ocean. There are two rainy seasons. The Masika has the heaviest rains that come during mid-March to May. The mvuli has a shorter period of rain from November to mid-January. Then there is the dry season. This is the best time to visit Africa for the trip that I’ve planned. Temperatures are cooler and last from May to October. Travelers find Tanzania to be one of the more popular destinations in East Africa. Of the many natural attractions there are the beaches of Zanzibar, Mount Kilimanjaro, the Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater. Because of Tanzania’s poor infrastructure; physical geography, roadways, and general transportation systems, land travel takes a lot of time to get around in such a large country. Tanzanians have a reputation for being very friendly. Outside of petty theft violent crime is substantially rare.http://goafrica.about.com/od/tanzania/a/tanzaniafacts.htm

I can’t imagine anything more beautiful than a hot air balloon ride at dawn over the Serengeti Plains. The Serengeti is a National Park which makes any night drives, walking safaris and off-roading strictly forbidden. A lot of time will be spent in a vehicle while in the Serengeti so a hot air balloon ride is a welcomed change of pace. – http://goafrica.about.com/od/tanzaniaparksandreserves/ig/Serengeti-National-Park/Hot-Air-Ballooning-in-the-Serengeti-.htm

Hot Air Ballooning in the Serengeti National Park

Hot Air Ballooning in the Serengeti National Park

When on safari in the Serengeti an open topped 4×4 Jeep is the best way to travel and also allows for maximum viewing pleasure. Choosing the right vehicle is important. Up to six hours a day can be spent traveling in a car. I definitely want to make sure it’s comfortable and that there is plenty of food and water packed. More than five or six passengers often makes the safari ride not as enjoyable as it could be. Room to comfortably stretch your arms and to stand up on the seats, and poke your head through the roof to truly enjoy all the wildlife is key. – http://goafrica.about.com/od/tanzaniaparksandreserves/ig/Serengeti-National-Park/Typical-Safari-Vehicle–Serengeti-.htm

Safari Vehicles in the Serengeti

Safari Vehicles in the Serengeti

I want to see the zebras which is why visiting in the dry season from May to October is the best time for the safari. In the Serengeti National Park is where the great annual migration of millions of wildebeest and zebra begins and ends. The zebra population is growing more each year. The start of the great annual migration happens in June. On the central Serengeti Plains there are thousands of zebra with their young. They spend their time grazing and resting their heads on the others backs. Absolutely breathtaking to imagine. It isn’t too uncommon to find a lion stalking a herd when on safari out in the wild. –  http://goafrica.about.com/od/tanzaniaparksandreserves/ig/Serengeti-National-Park/Serengeti-Great-Migration–Zebra–Tanzania.htm

The Great Annual Migration through the Serengeti Plains

The Great Annual Migration through the Serengeti Plains

Within the Serengeti National Park there are designated camps for visitors to camp at overnight. I’m marveling at the thought of staying in a mobile tented camp on the banks of the Grumeti River at the Tanganyika Wilderness Camp. From the picture it looks really accommodating and upscale. Each tent even has a flushing toilet and warm shower. There is staff on duty to service you and fresh food. At night you can enjoy a nice camp fire. All of this under a bright starry sky right in the midst of the wildlife during the great annual migration. Hippos, hyenas and lions, “Oh my!” – http://goafrica.about.com/od/tanzaniaparksandreserves/ig/Serengeti-National-Park/Mobile-Tented-Camp–Serengeti-.htm

Serengeti's Camps and Lodges (mobile tent)

Serengeti’s Camps and Lodges (mobile tent)

Now for the grand finale…..my wardrobe! A tropical climate in the dry season is perfect. With an average high around 80 degrees and a low of 60 degrees. Can’t beat that. A Diva is a diva is a diva. My style for my One Night Abroad is definitely from the runway to the wild. Here are some fun looks to play with.

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Wal-Mart: Quality one-stop shopping?

I was at a local Supercenter shopping for body soap, deodorant and Cascade. In and out, right? Wrong. There was all this merchandise calling to me. And the prices, awesome! I nearly had a panic attack. lol Every time I walked down an aisle I cringed. I’m a budget business type lady. Trained against all marketing schemes. Honey, this is no market maneuver. This is quality one-stop shopping. I know, I know… I am a Victoria’s Secret and Bath and Body Works loyalist myself. People, Wal-Mart has stepped up it’s game. The cutest panties. Two dollars plus tax. Ladies who like me will spend $10 to $15 or more (a lot more) on one pair of panties this is a God send. Numero uno reason why… That one week of the month where it’s touch and go. Oh no! A blunder. Damn, those panties were cute. But, but ladies, they were only $2. Chuck ’em!

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