Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Laugh Die You II

Bought a (not that) cheap ticket to the Friday (and last performance of) Laugh Die You II mostly out of curiousity and that tickets were getting cheaper as the dates got closer. I would feel bad for whoever bought tickets early, but... NOT! 

Left home a little later than I would've liked (read: dinner started late) considering I was going to a part of Sentul I wasn't familiar with. Because of the Friday night congestion and general sesat-ness, I parked on the grounds of the primary school next door (last in, first out situation) thanks to the RELA people.

No regrets having dinner at home beforehand as there wasn't much left in terms of F&B options (this was after ticket scan and hand stamp downstairs in the parking lot), so I headed up to my seat and I was just in time to see Gurmit Singh's Ah Beng contractor character Phua Chu Kang do his thing as host. I'm still surprised he still has the costume, but even if he didn't, I imagine it wouldn't cost too much to reproduce :P I also wasn't expecting him to be giving stuff out to people and have audience participation activities, which made me glad I didn't spend more on tickets and made me feel like I was at some company annual dinner... 

Thought I was going to be closer to the ledge than this :P
For how cheap the venue was (I had never heard of HGH Convention Centre until the previous Laugh Die You, and it's in the middle of Sentul - it's like if they had the show in my old primary school hall or something), at least it's modern in some aspects: there was free Wi-Fi where I was seated, so I was mostly on my phone looking for a way home because I had already seen these jokers at some point and half their material I had already heard before.

The only person I was tickled by (in any sense of the word) was PCK, whom I have to give props for entertaining those of us who were still in their seats during the 15 minute intermission by singing a couple of songs: some Jason Mraz song and another ballad. I didn't know the man could sing, but good on him.

Intermission countdown.

What I wasn't expecting was the pyro and the dancers. Yes, it's so high-low budget, that while it's held in a pimped out hall in Sentul, but got money for pyrotechnics and dancers.

Everyone (Kavin Jay, Singaporean comic Fakkah Fuzz, and Crackhouse Comedy Club co-owner Jonathan Atherton) did their 15 minutes, and after intermission, Harith came on as headliner, which also wasn't all that long... maybe half an hour?

What I also wasn't expecting (a night of surprises, I know) was that after everyone was done, the comics were going to do the joke-off on topics by the audience. I think they were also doing something else, but I figured I better GTFO first and the beat the traffic...

Note to self: probably better to park at D7 Jalan Sentul (free parking, and easier to get out), which houses the Three Little Birds Cafe (which I managed to squeeze in on my way out with a cup of dark hot chocolate).

No idea if I would go again...depends on the lineup, I guess.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Mr Holmes

Third movie last week, that I saw in Sunway Pyramid in the afternoon because I could. As I was going around the parking lot looking for parking, I was wondering why are there so many cars in the middle of the day? 

Mr Holmes is a story that while loosely based on a book (Mitch Cullin's A Slight Trick of the Mind), but it's not based on the Conan Doyle canon as this focuses on nonagenarian Holmes in his retirement years getting old and forgetting things as he tries to remember details of his last case. 
  • If nothing else, Sir Ian did a good job of playing someone twenty years older? 
  • Laura Linney's accent in this movie was alright, I guess...
  • I didn't know what a glass harmonica was before; and now that I do, I get why it went out of style... 
It was okay. If you don't want to spend your money on violent, big budget movies, this is not bad. 

Monday, 5 October 2015

Pawn Sacrifice

Actually paid to watch Pawn Sacrifice last Wednesday night at the Tropicana City Mall cineplex mostly because I want to give the local film distributors financial reason to bring in the occasional smaller movie for those of us who are either exhausted by the big budget movies or blockbuster hits. Also, second movie this week. 

There were probably only 10 of us in a room watching, including a family of five. 

I kinda didn't think it was all gonna be about chess, but it really is... kinda.

While I had only heard of Bobby Fischer in passing, but he comes off as such an ass in this movie. 

And Peter Sarsgaard looks pretty good in priest garb, as shallow as that sounds. Liev Schreiber (for all intents and purposes) will always be known to me as "Hamster Face". 
If you're a fan of chess, you're welcome to watch this as it's definitely an acquired taste. 

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Week 40, 2015

Took half the week off basically just because. Also, the haze this week is terrible.
  • Saw three movies this week which would've taken me thrice as long on my Wednesday night only schedule. 
  • Me attempting to catch up on show season premieres that I missed over the past weekend.
  • They're working on a MacGyver reboot - yay or nay?

Saturday, 3 October 2015


Don't know that much about the movie Sicario going in except when the cast went around promoting it on the late night circuit some months ago. Am I the only one that's baffled as to why we're getting this pretty gritty movie here? If nothing else, I have to give the local movie distributors props for bringing in something that's not going to appeal to the hoi polloi just to fill some seats. Not everyone wants to see a mindless movie every time they go to the movies. 

Anyhow, had the afternoon off and decided to cash in the free movie voucher I got and saw this in the second home TGV. 
  • I thought after many years of watching some (not all) gritty crime scenes on crime and cop shows, having the FBI tactical team dig up a house full of dead bodies in all levels of decay hidden in the walls was pretty gross (by in the walls, I mean ALL the walls). Have to like that having the FBI guys puke after all that makes them seem human. While I get that they weren't expecting to find quite that any bodies, let alone that many, you would think that by the time the boss (the dad from Alias) showed up, they would have done the Vicks under the nostrils thing or something. 
  • Josh Brolin's character wearing flip flops - haha.
  • Going around in private jets - macam Criminal Minds :P
  • I admit I haven't seen a lot of movies with Emily Blunt in it, but her American accent is not bad. 
  • How did a former prosecutor get so adept with guns one?
  • Hey, it's the guy from Burn Notice
  • It's just as well that there's no nudity in this. 
  • The wet willie torture device was really... out of left field.
It reminds me of The Mentalist (where Benicio Del Toro's character wants to avenge the death of his family) and Criminal Minds (in how gruesome the crime scenes get, and the travelling around in a private jet).

I like that I didn't really know what's going to happen next. It's not for people with weak dispositions and stomachs.

Friday, 2 October 2015

Muse, Singapore Indoor Stadium

It's been almost 10 years since I was last at Singapore Indoor Stadium for a concert - the last concert Coldplay performed in this neck of the woods. A lot has changed in the area: there's now a designated MRT station (succinctly named "Stadium"), swanky new mall... all a stone's throw away.

By the time I got to the bag check counters upstairs, they probably saw a lot of bags since the doors opened: the auntie with the flashlight checked my crossbody bag but not my backpack, which was where I stashed my partially filled Platypus bottle so I won't be terribly dehydrated. Of course there's also food and drink available, but you know...

Of course before I went through the bag check, etc, I made the obligatory pit stop to the merch booth downstairs, which didn't have the tour tee shirt in the size I wanted. Of course there were other things like hoodies, etc, but really... the tee shirts at S$50 was already erm, pricey enough. I was told to go check the booth upstairs and try my luck. Tee shirt shopping when you can't actually try it on and with only almost 3 hours sleep, I think I made the wrong call about the size (let's just say that when I tried it on later, the sleeves were a little tight and I was afraid I would Hulk out; there goes another Muse tee-shirt I can keep, but can't exactly wear. Next time I'm sticking to guy tee shirts). But anyway...

Despite leaving Orchard Road at what I thought was a late hour (nearly 8 p.m.), by the time I got there, I just managed to catch the opening act The Ruse. The Ruse opening for Muse - that's not a coincidence :P

The view from the nosebleeds

They played a lot of songs for an opening act: 6 - 8 songs, I think. Took what seemed like forever for the crew to disassemble The Ruse's equipment and to set up Muse's equipment. I took this time to recover from the long day I had to that point. The Malay asshole I was seated next to (and his buddies behind us, probably from East Coast) were being idiots by telling them to get off the stage, etc. Thankfully the whole lot of them probably snuck down to the mosh pit area in between performances.

Also forgot to mention the Kallang Wave everyone else did, which apparently (so I was told) that they do before every football match or something to that effect.

Since the last time I saw them, they had released two albums, so enough time has passed IMO to bother going to a concert again.

Muse Setlist Singapore Indoor Stadium, Singapore, Singapore 2015, Drones
Edit this setlist | More Muse setlists

There wasn't much banter this time, but I think it's because it's their third show this week (they were in China and Thailand the past week) and they can't be arsed...? With the day I had, neither can I, so can't blame them. 

Instead of starting the show with Knights of Cydonia, that song is now part of the encore. At least they changed things up a little. Whether it's your first time seeing them or not, it was a good time to be had. 

Also met up with my local friend and her husband after the show at the old mall (which was SWAMPED with concert goers - so much so the Burger King had ran out of certain menu items and had to stop the line because they wanted to close). Because the line was so long, by the time we're done, the buses and trains had stopped running and we had to cab it. They were nice enough to have the cabbie drop me off at my street before going back. 

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Getting myself to the airport and first Malindo flight

As an anxious traveller (not about the actual flying, but missing the flight altogether), I only got about 3 hours sleep (probably less, but I had to make myself get SOME sleep) before I had to get a ride out to Paradigm to catch the 5 a.m. bus to the airport. As the rest of the family were not home when I left (cousin's wedding), I was really fortunate to get an Uber ride from a dude that was on his way home to Subang at 4 in the morning who started his "shift" at 10 p.m. the night before, and there weren't any other cars at that time of day. 

Getting a ticket was the easy part, even at 4 something in the morning because the ticketing counter at the back of mall is open from 3.30 a.m.. I would hate that job, I imagine. This time there were more people using the service, but notably several MAS and Malindo flight attendants. Talk about budget cuts - I thought there used to be transport for them one...? :P 

So the bus arrived a few minutes before and after everyone got their bags stowed away, left promptly at 5 a.m. The driver took the Federal Highway and exited at Batu Tiga toll to get to Sepang. 

The only good thing about arriving at KLIA2 so ridonkulously early is that I was finally be able to walk around the place before the flight counter opened. It's more mall than airport, but what the heck.

Also just my luck that Malindo's departure gate is the furthest end (I asked the lady at the baggage drop how far to the gate, she said it was "jauh". Might as well just check it in because it's included in the fare). Fortunately there were trolleys after the LAG screening. I thought we would be boarding the plane rightaway, but no - we went to a holding area while people were still getting off the plane.

We left about 10, 15 minutes after posted departure time, and arrived around noon at Changi's Terminal 3. Don't know if it was that time of day or there weren't that many flights coming in, or what but it took me longer to find the immigration form and filling that out than I was in line for immigration.