Things I have been cooking lately #128: Courgetti with prawns, asparagus and chilli

So I have a new kitchen toy. It’s called a spiralizer and you can use it to turn firm vegetables like courgettes into thin strands that resemble spaghetti and then eat that in place of pasta to up the veg in your meals (and cut carbs if you’re into that kind of thing). I love courgettes so I started my experiments with the spiralizer with them, which turned out to be delicious.


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Film Friday #244

Tank Girl (1995)

In a post apocalyptic world where all water is controlled by a sinister corporation called Water & Power, Rebecca (Lori Petty) and her friends are the last survivors in a wasteland terrorised by creatures called Rippers. When Rebecca is captured during a raid by Water & Power she is put to work as a slave in an attempt to break her. Read more…

Argumentative August #13 – Philadelphia (1993)


Check out my guest blog on Philadelphia for movierob and rgagne’s Argumentative August blog.

Originally posted on Ten Stars or Less:


Argumentative August #13 – Philadelphia (1993) –

Rob and I would like to once again welcome you to another review for our Argumentative August Blogathon. This next film, Philadelphia is being reviewed by Abbi of Let’s see what she thought of this movie…


Tom Hanks plays Andrew Beckett an up and coming young lawyer in a large and successful firm. Pegged for great things Andrew is given a vital case by his employers but on the deadline day an important file goes missing and Andrew is fired for negligence. Andrew is convinced that he has been sabotaged because one of the partners has noticed a lesion on his forehead which is a symptom of the fact that he is suffering from AIDS and that he was actually dismissed not only because of this but because he is gay.

Andrew decides that he’s going to take on his former firm…

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Things I have been cooking lately #127: Sugar free, vegan energy bars

One of the philosophies I have been trying to embody with my recent healthy living kick is to avoid processed food and to cut back on sugar, especially unnecessary added sugar which often appears in processed food. This does mean than grabbing portable, quick food on the go can be a bit of a challenge, especially for breakfast. That’s where these bars come in. They have no added sugar, they’re vegan, they’re wheat-free and they are delicious! They’re also packed with fibre and healthy fats and will give you a great energy boost first thing in the morning or just before a workout.

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Film Friday #243

Trainwreck (2015)

Amy (Amy Schumer) is a self-confessed trainwreck. She doesn’t do dating as much as she does wild sexual abandon, she works for a magazine that makes Vice look sensitive and she’s more than happy to abuse whatever substances take her fancy. Essentially she’s the antithesis of her happily married sister, Kim (Brie Larson), aligning herself more with her serial philandering father, Gordon (Colin Quinn). Read more…

Inside Out

The Film Emotion Blogathon

A number of my favourite bloggers have recently participated in this blogathon, which started over at Conman at the Movies, who is actually new to me. The blogathon is actually over now so I know I am completely behind but I liked the idea so much I decided I wanted to do it anyway! Connor… I hope you don’t mind! The plan is to take the five emotions from Inside Out and pick a movie to represent each of them. Read more…

Things I have been cooking lately #126: Healthy carrot cake oatmeal cookies

Since coconut oil became the new big thing in both cooking and health I have been quite keen to try it out for cooking and baking. The one thing that has put me off though is the exorbitant price of a jar in my local supermarket or heath shop. However last week I discovered that the ethnic food section of my local Sainsbury’s now sells coconut oil for £2 a jar. This particular aisle in Sainsbury’s has been one of my top finds. It sells tinned tomatoes that are inexplicably cheaper than the Basics range along with super cheap pulses like chickpeas. With that in mind I bought a jar and used it for this recipe with great results. If your super market doesn’t have a cheap ethnic food aisle and you don’t want to shell out for pricey ingredients you can definitely substitute the coconut oil in these tasty but healthy cookies with melted butter.

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BOOK REVIEW: The Martian by Andy Weir

This book was recommended to me by my friend, Rob. Rob is married to Jen who is a member of my infamous book club. Along with Mr O and Tal (who is Carrie’s boyfriend) he is one of the book club BAHs (boyfriends and husbands) who all secretly wish they were allowed to join book club.

In the near future, botanist and engineer Mark Watney is a key member of the crew of a NASA mission to Mars. When a storm strikes the mission’s landing site Mark is injured and presumed dead forcing the crew to evacuate and leave him behind. Fortunately/unfortunately Mark isn’t dead but by the time he makes it back to the Hab (the crew’s Mars-based living quarters) it’s too late. Read more…


Film Friday #242

The Guest (2014)

Not long after the death of their son, a soldier named David (Dan Stevens) turns up on the door of the Peterson family. He claims to have served with their son and to have promised to take care of the family. Grief stricken, the family welcomes David into their home and he starts to make himself comfortable and useful… maybe a little too useful. He bonds with younger brother, Luke (Brendan Meyer) and helps him stand up to the kids who bully him. He commiserates with dad, Spencer (Leland Orser) over the fact that he’s lost out to a management position to a younger co-worker and reminisces with mom, Laura (Sheila Kelley). Read more…

Things I have been cooking lately #125: Low fat blueberry muffins

So the health kick continues and so far I have lost 12kg and never felt more well or energetic in my life. One thing I have been missing is baking because you know bakers gonna bake… so I was excited when I found this low fat blueberry muffin recipe and discovered that it was delicious. Check it out!

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Film Friday #241

Ant-Man (2015)

Paul Rudd plays Scott Lang, an ex-con who has just been released from prison after breaking into his former employer’s offices and returning the funds they stole from customers. Scott wants to get on the straight and narrow in order to be able to spend time with his young daughter but the lure of one last big score is just too much for him and he is catapulted into the path of scientist Dr Hank Pym (Michael Douglas). Read more…

Shitfest Summer 2015: The Lucky Shit


Ladies and gentlemen Shitfest is once again upon us! Glory hallelujah! This time I am sharing my thoughts on The Lucky One so check that shit out!

Originally posted on Isaacs Picture Conclusions:

Ah Shitfest, the biannual event that made me famous. This time I am back to lambaste the cinematic reworkings of one of my most hated novelists, Nicholas Sparks, the man who brought us not only the bizarrely popular The Notebook and the utterly ludicrous, Safe Haven. I have decided to turn my beady eye on The Lucky One,  a mind-numbing attempt to cash in not only on the Americans’ love of large dogs (like Zach Efron) and as well as veterans… as long as it doesn’t have to take care of them after they’ve come back from the illegal war… but I digress.

The Lucky Shit AKA The Lucky One (2012)

Zach Efron plays a marine stationed in I-Rack, who after a raid on what seems like mostly women and children spots a photo lying in the dust. When he goes over to pick up there is an explosion…

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Things I have been cooking lately #124: Spicy chicken and avocado salad

I feel like at least half of my recipes are spicy something. When I was younger I wasn’t a big fan of spicy food but Mr O is a complete spice addict and the more time I have spent with him the more adventurous I have gotten with my flavours. This chicken and avocado salad makes a delicious lunch, especially if you leave it overnight for the flavours to develop.


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10 Once great actors whose careers have gone into decline

Whether it’s because of personal problems, bad film choices, laziness or possibly an over-estimation of their talent level in the first place we all know actors who once had a brilliant career but seem to have squandered their potential. Here are ten of the ones I have found the most disappointing. Read more…


Film Friday #240

Inside Out (2015)

This latest Disney/Pixar outing takes us on an journey into the mind of eleven year old Riley (voiced by Kaitlyn Dias) whose actions are controlled by her five core emotions – Joy (voiced by Amy Poehler), Sadness (voiced by Phyllis Smith), Disgust (voiced by Mindy Kaling), Fear (voiced by Bill Hader) and Anger (voiced by Lewis Black). For the most part Riley’s life has been filled with joy who generally takes charge of her emotional state but when her family relocates from Minnesota to San Francisco Sadness starts to play a bigger role, one that Joy isn’t particularly pleased with. Read more…

Things I have been cooking lately #123: Spicy skinny Mexican bake

So the skinny kick continues in the O household and I have been trying really hard to come up with recipes that are pack a lot of flavour but are still filling and healthy. I think this hearty bake definitely fits the bill. It also keeps really well as its flavours develop so it’s an excellent next day lunch.

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paper towns

BOOK REVIEW: Paper Towns by John Green

I decided to read Paper Towns because I saw the film trailer and thought it looked kind of intriguing. Despite being in my thirty-fifth year of existence I have always enjoyed a bit of Young Adult fiction as well as the occasional teen movie so the premise seemed like it had some merits. Generally when it comes to film adaptations I quite like to have read the book in advance so I thought why not check it out? I will be upfront and say that I didn’t like The Fault in Our Stars, which is by the same author, one bit but I don’t think you can judge an author by just one book so I decided not to let it put me off. Read more…


Film Friday #239

Love & Mercy (2014)

Love & Mercy follows the life of Brian Wilson, the key musical force behind iconic band the Beach Boys during two key phases of his life. Paul Dano plays a young Wilson in the period after the band’s initial success, during the conception of Pet Sounds and the initial abandonment of SMiLE, while John Cusack plays him in later life after he has become a virtual recluse at the hands of his psychologist, Dr Eugene Landy (Paul Giamatti). Read more…

Things I have been cooking lately #122: Moroccan couscous jewel salad

Mr O and I are continuing to work hard on our healthy eating so I’ve been making loads of salads.  This couscous based one has been such a hit that it’s become an almost overnight lunch/dinner staple. The reason it’s called a “jewel” salad is because all the pretty colourful ingredients look like little jewels dotted through the couscous.

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BOOK REVIEW: The Lifeboat by Charlotte Rogan

You would think after Moby Dick I would be avoiding books set at sea but our latest book club assignment had me right back in the ocean.

This time I was reading about Grace Winter a twenty-two year old woman who is one of a handful of survivors following the sinking of The Princess Alexandra. Grace is on trial along with two of her fellow survivors for an unspecified crime that occurred during the twenty-one days they were trapped on a lifeboat. Read more…