North by Northwest (1959) Review

Genre : Action, Thriller, Classic

Duration : 136 minutes

Director : Alfred Hitchcock

Stars : Cary Grant, Eva Marie Saint, James Mason, Martin Landau, Leo G. Carroll

 

North by Northwest is a charming suspense movie, a film that is unparalleled even today in terms of producing an optimal mix of plot, humour, action, and intrigue without resorting to clichés.

 

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock at his very best, the box-office hit film is possibly one of the most entertaining movies ever made and one of Hitchcock’s most famous mystery stories in his entire career. It has all the classic elements of a Hitchcock film, well-timed suspense, catchy lines, excellent conversations, plenty of plot twists that constantly keep the audience guessing, and not to forget a compelling cast. Each of the twists is calculated precisely and at every direction the audience is told only the barest minimum they need to know. Many people consider this film to be Hitchcock’s most accomplished effort. Brilliantly written by Ernest Lehman, the screenplay keeps the audience engaged throughout the film, it keeps the viewer guessing but also provides answers in a timely fashion. For example, when things start going wrong for the protagonist near the beginning, we aren’t forced to wail until the end to uncover the plot against him. Enough clues are provided in the early stages so the intelligent viewer can find out what’s going on and move to the next mystery. This intellectual ingredient, always a Hitchcock trademark, is sadly lacking in today’s so-called “thrillers.”

The quick-paced, glamourous espionage thriller includes a tongue-in-cheek odyssey away from the city, a memorable adventure for a man who is normally covered by his wealth and prestige. A successful yet light-hearted Manhattan advertising executive is suddenly in danger of losing everything, vulnerable, isolated, and caught up in an unexplainable series of events, it’s a case of mistaken identity. After being kidnapped by a group of foreign spies who accuse him as a government undercover Federal agent, the media are also pointing fingers at him as a murder suspect on-the-run after the murder of a United Nations diplomat. He is chased cross-country by a conspiratorial group of spies, the police, and the FBI. He is eventually forced to assume another man’s identity while confronted with murder, mayhem, a world of spies and counterspies, a domineering and unbelieving mother, and an untrustworthy, seemingly mysterious blonde, femme fatale lover. His final redemption takes place on the Presidential faces carved on Mount Rushmore, the most modern American image of all at the time.

One to watch : North by Northwest exceeds expectations

However, even though it’s easy to pick out these familiar features, they never make things predictable, and they all fit naturally into the plot. For it to be a classic, support must come from the actors, the script, and the score. As you might expect, North by Northwest is solid in all three of these parts. There are lead actors, that is, performers who have a bigger part than the others, and then there are lead actors, who seem to command all of the others to dramatic excellence. Cary Grant matches the latter definition in probably and most definitely his career-best performance. Full of sharp lines combined with a glint of fun in his eyes. He’s dangerously charming, full of that Golden Age appeal that is rarely seen these days. He was never more at home than in this role of the advertising-man-on-the-run. He handles the suprised look, the quick smile, and the dialogue with professional aplomb and grace. In casting Eva Marie Saint, Mr. Hitchcock has found another hidden gem. He really brings out the best of her, never shown by the actress before. Although she is seemingly a hard, designing type, she also emerges both the sweet heroine and the glamourous charmer. Eva Marie Saint pulls off her ice-blonde routine to perfection, and looks fantastic in a series of beautifully tailored costumes. Let’s not forget to mention Bernard Herrman who provides another great orchestral score to heighten the mood from start to finish. The man was as brilliant with musical notes as Albert Einstein was with numbers. Here, his work is as good as his usual standard of excellence.

Alfred Hitchcock obviously loves telling the absurd story with confidence. It’s fast-paced, surprising, and highly enjoyable. But like all Hitchcock films, there are lots of things in the plot that aren’t too realistic in real life, but it moves so quickly that you never stop to notice, and you wouldn’t care if you did. This film also contains the best naughty joke Hitchcock ever mentioned. The final sequence is Eva Marie Grant and Cary Grant pulling each other into bed in a train. Seconds later they show us the train entering a tunnel. You figure it out.

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Regret always comes at last

What more can you do when it’s too late to react on something ? Do you give up ? Do you wait for another opportunity to try again ? Or do you just sit back, forget about it and keep going ? It is unbelievably depressing when someone with a fantastic heart just abandons you in the middle of everything, pretending nothing happened and reacting like she should be reacting when something truly bothers you that see doesn’t see what it is and you’re just way out of touch to make it up. Here’s a story of a truly “nice guy” with innocent look and no bad intentions at all.

One night, a “nice guy” came along to a small party organized by his good friend. He knocked on the door, entered the apartment and said hello to the people who were already there. He poured himself a glass of gin and tonic and started to have a chit chat with the others. A few moments later a normal yet charming girl came in. She had this kind of charm that nobody could spot on it, she was just different than most of other girls who once you look at them, you forget their faces a couple of seconds later. So the nice guy began to have a light conversation with this girl, knowing that he believed she was different, he put it all in just like in a poker game. He certainly did his best to get the girl’s attraction and the outcome on that night was not bad at all for a girl that at that time and still until now, was taken by another guy. They started to know each other better after that night, they exchanged numbers and talked everyday on a social media. At that moment it looked like everything was going alright for both of them especially for the nice guy who was falling for her charm, but what is that little problem that he’s yet to find out which slows him down for getting closer and closer to her ?

The nice guy was definitely sure she realized how he felt to her. She was just not superior enough to accept the truth. The truth that is now well-hidden and almost disappeared at some place where only the nice guy has the map to find it. The situation has now become dark and has reached a dead-end. All the things that he dreamt he could have had, have turned into “things he could only dream about”. The finish line which was reachable now looks so far ahead of him, he thinks that he’s got no more patience to put it all back on track. It’s just not happening for this nice guy. What has he done wrong in the past that really puts him on the back-foot now ? Maybe he’s not yet strong mentally, maybe the girl has turned her attention to something else, maybe nothing really happened and it’s just his imagination and he gets anxious, or maybe she’s just not worth it which is a real shame because they’d make a perfect couple. Imagine a nice guy with big dreams and promising future coupled with a charming small realist girl who just wants to get along with life with a little hint of curiosity. The imaginary couple that people could only dream of is perfectly pictured in that sentence. It’s all bleak and dark at the moment.

She should have never given hope to the guy.

Here’s a bonus, Ernest Hemingway once said :

When you love you wish to do things for. You wish to sacrifice for. You wish to serve.

Everything is ruined.

Our identity is tied to our ability to communicate. We are what we eat and we are how we communicate.

A little quote about reality

The revolution of culture industry and Theodor Adorno’s theories

The culture industry is a thesis proposed by Frankfurt School duo Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer. It contends that cultural industries exist to enforce the capitalists. Adorno took a long and careful look at society and culture then concluded it was “a giant vacuous hole of despair and hopelessness.”

  • The more difficult something is to reproduce, the more is it fetishized and sustained.
  • As culture is used by capitalism to control the individual consciousness, so too does it become industrialized and commodified.
  • Where art was once also a commodity, in a capitalism it is to all extents a commodity and is often successful through the evocation and manipulation of desires.

Adorno and Horkheimer coined the expression culture industry to replace the concept of mass culture, which they felt had a semantic odds with the truth. “Industry” does not necessarily refer to industrial production, although many works of culture commodification do indeed define it in this way. Rather, it implies to standardization and pseudo-singularity of cultural items, and to the regulation of how they are promoted and distributed.

Effects of capitalism

Results of a capitalist system are the consequences of its design. Despair at the manipulation of people by other people in the 20th century society, but capitalism has great facility in handling all alternatives to itself. Frankfurt School were skilled in discerning the flaws in society but were less adept at finding a proper and sufficient replacement for it. Perhaps capitalism will be crushed under the weight of its own cultural trash, but it’s likelier that mass culture will continue to perpetuate itself. And this seems legit, for a greedy consumer has little use for gathering taste.

Adorno was a seminal figure for the Frankfurt School

Adorno was a seminal figure for the Frankfurt School

Analyzing Adorno’s theories

Products of mass culture would not be praised if people did not enjoy them or badly used them, and that culture is self-ruling in its administration. It would deny Adorno’s contemporary political significance, disputing that politics in robust society is much more concerned with action than with thought. Younger generation of critical theorists largely overlook Adorno’s work which is difficult to interpret. Adorno was incapable to outline practical verdict from his theories. Adorno is also accused of a lack of consistency in his claims to be implementing marxism. Even though he accepted the classical marxist analysis of society showing how one class exercises domination over another. Adorno’s approach that the mass of the people are only objects of the culture industry is related to his feeling that the time when the working class could be the ingredients of overwhelming capitalism is over. Some critics of Theodor Adorno have even called his ideas as “incomprehensible” because they are so dense and sophisticatedly constructed. We as the audience need time to evaluate the subject, to think upon it, and achieve some conclusions about the piece.

Adorno acknowledged that any widely-known piece of culture has always possessed a commercial aspect. Products of the culture industry on the other hand “are no longer also commodities”, they are “commodities through and through.” Art is no longer pursued but instead people are upbeat to gain profit by doing research of demographics and targeting audiences. Everything that made art has been terminated considering the importance of landing high audience reception and money by prostituting itself and contaminating its audience.

Examples in real life

If the cultural products lose their sense of meaning, purity, and authenticity because of their mass-production, who happens to the individuals who buy into these commodities ? Imagine yourself walking into a Samsung store looking to buy the new Samsung Galaxy Note II due to its overrated and exaggerate publicity in mass media (TV, newspapers, internet, radio), under the awareness that you already have another multi-functional smartphone Samsung Galaxy S III in your pocket, isn’t it irony ? This is what I call “buying new trendy thing”, it’s a disease in this 21st century society. Humans would never fulfill their satisfaction.

My verdict

We, as the consumers are being victimized by the producers and therefore we no longer have the genuine and original feeling when purchasing new goods because the products are being mass-produced. We simply don’t have the experience again of “look at this sh*t that I just got, it’s awesome !”

The society we live in is like a gold mine for innovators. There are techniques which the innovators can use to exploit this condition, these including satire and irony, manipulation of mass media (how they publicize their products), independent production, and alternative distribution to cut the cost.

People queueing up outside an Apple store, such an irony

People queueing up outside an Apple store, such an irony

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Understanding the philosophy of Marshall McLuhan

An aphorist, an “eccentric and original” communicator, Herbert Marshall McLuhan was born in Edmonton, Canada in 1911. He is known for coining the expressions “The medium is the message” and “The Global Village” as well for his theory on “hot and cool media”. He also gained popularity through his work on emphasizing the grammarian’s epistemology of “percept” versus the Cartesian “concept”. In the 1960′s, he made his name known because of his mastery of epigram and sententious phrase, ancient terms for the post-modern “sound bite”. McLuhan coined the expression “global village” to describe social, economic, and political environment of the world with the arrival of instant worldwide electronic communication. Considered by many to be the first father and leading prophet of the electronic age, McLuhan wrote his monumental work Understanding Media in 1964. In the book, he said many things that are still pertinent today even though there are still some disagreements today.

Let’s take a look of the book on understanding hot and cool media :

There is basic principle that distinguishes a hot medium like radio from a cool one like TV. A hot medium is one that extends one single sense in “high definition”. High definition is the state of being well filled with date. A photograph is visually high definition and a cartoon, for example, is low definition simply because the ear is given a meager amount of information. Speech is a cool medium of low definition, because little is given and much has to be filled in by the listener. Therefore, hot media are low in participation, and cool media are high in participation (require the audience to participate more).

The reason readers have trouble with this distinction is that, on first reading and perhaps on second and third, is seems to be false. How different is the amount of information the ear receives through a telephone’s speaker and through a radio’s speaker ? Is this just a matter of radio speakers, in general, being higher quality than telephone speakers ? Does it matter whether what comes through the radio is music or speech, given that “speech is a cool medium of low definition”. So that people are talking on the radio then it somehow becomes a cool medium ?

Marshall McLuhan

McLuhan was simply dismissive of such puzzlement. In his preface to a later edition of the book, he wrote that “the section on hot and cool media confused many reviewers of Understanding Media who were unable to recognize the very large structural changes in human outlook that are occurring today.” His critics, then, are just out of touch with contemporary experience.

Criticizing Marshall McLuhan

First, McLuhan never made arguments, only assertions. Second, those assertions are sometimes wrong, when they’re not wrong they are highly debatable. Third, the work of McLuhan was a particular culmination of an aesthetic theory which became negatively, a social theory. And finally, McLuhan’s aphoristic approach does not allow for in-depth analysis of complex social phenomena, and his lack of tact in the phenomena he chooses to reduce to media effects can be staggering at times.

There are several ways to read McLuhan badly. One is to take the slogans and run with them : The medium is the message – Go ! A second is to take any one of his theories, in which one communications technology is set against another, and see it as a free-standing illustration of his overall view of something. A third is to swallow his vast bland assertions without a great deal of it. A fourth, and probably what I think is the most understandable of them all, is to mistake his Christian eschatological hope for a purely secular and material utopianism.

Conclusion

The value for media studies of McLuhan’s aphorism, The medium is the message, cannot be separated from the contested value of McLuhan’s thesis on media. But while the intellectual of taking him seriously is similar to panning gold in a river of silt. There’s nevertheless gold to be found there. We do not have to like or even apply with everything that McLuhan said, but we should remember that his life was dedicated to showing men the truth about the world they live in, and the hidden consequences of the technology he develops.

Smoking his cigar

Smoking his cigar

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Cité Soleil : le bidonville le plus pauvre et dangereux sur la planète

Construit à l’origine pour accueillir quelques milliers d’ouvriers, le bidonville de Cité Soleil consiste aujourd’hui en tous les maux de la société haïtienne : endémique, chômage, analphabétisme, gangstérisme, désertions des services publics, et violence armée.

Située dans l’arrondissement de Port-au-Prince, Cité Soleil est une commune d’Haïti qui a été considérée comme l’un des endroits les plus dangereux sur la planète. Ici vivent plus de 250.000 habitants, la plupart dans une misère totale. Sept haïtiens sur dix gagnent moins de deux dollars par jour dans ce bidonville pour assurer leur existence du lever au coucher du soleil. La route vers le bord de mer serpente à travers des quartiers délabrés où s’entasse la majorité de la population dans une catastrophe de plus en plus en criante et la situation en vrai est encore pire à « Sun City ».

Un jeune homme joue au cerf-volant avec une bouteille

Un jeune homme joue au cerf-volant avec une bouteille

Depuis les années quatre-vingt-dix, plus de 30 factions opposées ont continué à terroriser le quartier. Plusieurs gangs armés contrôlent chaque bloc. Le viol, l’attentat, le kidnapping, et le pillage sont carrément communs dans tous les coins de ce bidonville. Il n’y a aucune présence de droits fondamentaux dans cette société et d’ailleurs, Cité Soleil est devenu une autre communauté. Pour quitter le bidonville, on doit passer par les points de contrôles armés. La Croix-Rouge a appelé le ghetto « un microcosme de tous les maux dans la société haïtienne ». Ce n’est vraiment une zone sans espoir. Tout cela se passe à seulement deux heures de vol d’une ville idyllique, Miami.

La commune souffre presque de tous les maux du monde. Les riverains tout comme les responsables municipaux gèrent un quotidien des plus amers, notamment sur le plan socioéconomique. Sur ces problèmes qui pèsent sur la vie des habitants de la Cité Soleil, viennent se greffer d’autres difficultés, par exemple, au manque d’infrastructure et l’absence totale des services de base à tous les niveaux. Pas de police, pas ou peu d’électricité, pas de commerces, un accès aux soins de santé et à l’éducation des plus sommaires : les habitants survivent coupés du reste du pays.

Les efforts de la MINUSTAH

La Mission des Nations unies pour la stabilisation en Haïti, ou également connue sous le nom de « MINUSTAH » a été établie en 2004. C’était une mission de maintien de la paix de l’Organisation des Nations unies (l’ONU) en Haïti. Après des mois de combats, la MINUSTAH a pris le contrôle de ce quartier de Port-au-Prince en 2007. Très vite après ça, certains progrès y ont été tant bien que mal réalisés. Grâce à la police nationale et la MINUSTAH, une certaine tranquillité est devenue plus en plus évidente.

La violence a nettement diminué à Cité Soleil. Toutefois, plusieurs riverains de Cité Soleil disent avoir reconnu qu’il existe ces derniers temps, une période de répit, même si la misère noire, le chômage, et la faim hantent encore les esprits.

La plupart des habitants à Cité Soleil sont encore jeune

La plupart des habitants à Cité Soleil sont encore jeunes

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Europe’s top 10 most underrated cities

Ever wanted to know beautiful cities in Europe apart from Paris, Rome, Barcelona, and London ? Let’s take a look at my Europe’s top 10 most underrated destinations. From nightlife in Slovakia, awesome mountains in Austria, to one of the biggest music annual festivals in Scandinavia.

10. Lviv, Ukraine

Street view in Lviv

Street view in Lviv

Ukraine as a whole country should be considered on top of the list of underrated destinations in Europe. This architectural jewel of western Ukraine is notably different to any other Ukrainian cities. The historic city centre is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and without a doubt, worth a visit at least once in our lifetime. Old buildings and cobblestone roads could be seen around the city along with charming cafés and cozy restaurants are ideally suited for relaxation. Keep in mind that you don’t have to spend that much money in this country to have an enjoyable trip in Ukraine.

Sunflower fields in Ukraine are one of the most peaceful places

Sunflower fields in Ukraine are one of the most peaceful places

9. Bergen, Norway

Bergen is located in western Norway, it is the second’s country largest city. Bergen has retained its charm and relaxed atmosphere, and offers an existing blend of culture and nature. With backdrop of beautiful mountains and fjords which offer excellent hiking opportunities, Bergen is also an ideal place to go yachting, cycling, and rafting. Friendly locals and a dynamic cultural life might be another factor to try living in this charming city.

Colourful architecture in Bergen

Colourful architecture in Bergen

8. Florence, Italy

The capital of Tuscany, Florence offers a wide range of visits. From old churches, palaces, and museums which include sculptures made by Michelangelo, Donatello, and many more famous artists. A broad range of specialty shopping, Florence is also considered as one of the most important fashion cities around. The fact that many fashion giants such as Salvatore Ferragamo, Gucci, and Roberto Cavalli are headquartered in Florence makes this city a popular choice to visit while spending time in Italy.

Sightseeing in Florence

Sightseeing in Florence

7. Copenhagen, Denmark

Nobody could say that Copenhagen is unpopular and infamous. But I still think that this city deserves more attention. And why not, Copenhagen is filled with beautiful canals, cobbled squares, cozy sidewalk cafés, and tempting pastry shops. Copenhagen is also home to one of the most popular attractions around in Tivoli Gardens, an amusement park which has one of the world’s oldest wooden roller coaster. The city has lately become popular as a beer-drinking destination in Europe. Even beers from Greenland and Faroe Island are easily found at local pubs. To sum it all up, the Roskilde Festival (an annual music festival) is held in this city. It is one of the six biggest annual music festivals in Europe, it covers the mainstream youth from Scandinavia and the rest of Europe. The likes of Björk, Radiohead, Chromatics, Bon Iver, and Them Crooked Vultures have taken part in this festival.

Copenhagen

The Roskilde Festival

6. Bratislava, Slovakia

The city of Bratislava

The city of Bratislava

Hands down on Prague as the most beautiful city in Eastern Europe and the city definitely deserves it. But what about Prague’s little sister Bratislava ? That’s unfortunate for Bratislava to live in the shadow of Prague because this city has its own fascinating history and is home to many great castles, narrow and winding streets, and old churches. Bratislava has been completely renovated with diverse restaurants, new real estate developments, and a fantastic nightlife scene. It has become the cultural heart of Slovakia and numerous theaters, cinemas, and galleries lie around the city.

Nightlife scene in Bratislava

Nightlife scene in Bratislava

5. Strasbourg, France

Being the seat of the European Parliament doesn’t stop Strasbourg to become one of the most must-visit cities in Europe. Located in the region of Alsace and close to the border with Germany, Strasbourg has it all. From modern transportation, fascinating foods, vintage city centre, medieval streets, to its own culture. The city is beautifully maintained by its inhabitants who seem to have a real sense of pride and concern for their local environment. Bikes are everywhere around the corner and are a good option to go sight-seeing in the city.

A river in Strasbourg at night

A river in Strasbourg at night

4. Reykjavík, Iceland

Nature at its best

Nature at its best

Far from everywhere and every stress you have, the capital of Iceland makes a good bet to go for a visit. During the post-war, a mass exodus from the coutryside began, a once primitive village was quickly transformed into a modern city. Reykjavík has produced several talents in recent years, such as Björk, Sigur Rós, and Múm. Nature sight-seeing is popular around the tourists. This island is geologically active with many volcanoes, ranking the country as one of the most beautiful in Europe.

Reykjavik in winter

Reykjavik in winter

3. Innsbruck, Austria

Innsbruck panorama

Innsbruck panorama

With 120.000 residents, Innsbruck is the fifth largest city in Austria. It is located both near Munich and northern Italy making it a must see alpine destination. This city hosted the Winter Olympics twice and is considered as the largest ski resort in the alps making the city interesting for those ski lovers. The local residents are very friendly and easy to talk to, most of them speak English. I once visited a local restaurant to have a lunch and they offered me a free pint of beer ! The capital of Tyrol merits a longer stay, car-free streets throughout the Old Town, surprisingly edgy architecture, calm and friendly atmosphere around the city, and cheap cigarette price. This is the kind of city that makes your heart beats so fast once you enter the town. It’s a good choice to live for your retirement days.

Pedestrian bridge over the Inn River

Pedestrian bridge over the Inn River

2. Bruges, Belgium

Bruges (or Brugge in Flemmish) is one of the best pre-motorised cities in Europe and offers the kind of charms rarely available in other cities. It is a post-card perfect stop on any tour of Europe. What makes this city underrated is the fact that most people had never heard of this city before recent Colin Farrell film In Bruges. Take a walk along a canal, then have some mussels with fries, and wash them with the world’s best Belgian beer. There is a museum in Bruges called the Chip Museum. Tracing the potato’s journey from 16th century Belgium to its transformation into chips. Bruges is also a fantastic place to take photos and a city where you don’t mind being a tourist ! One down-point is the weather which even by Belgian standards has a poor reputation.

The medieval architecture in Bruges along with a canal

The medieval architecture in Bruges along with a canal

1. Ajaccio (Corsica), France

Luxury resort in Corsica

Luxury resort in Corsica

Santorini was a decent place to spend your summer before it became too commercial as a destination of couples on their second honeymoon. Ajaccio is located on the island of Corsica, the place where French hero Napoléon Bonaparte was born in 1769. The island of Corsica is spiritually one-third Italian but technically French which means you get the best of both worlds here. From France : cheese, crisp rosé, French art. From Italy : fresh pasta studded with even fresher seafood, and better manners than you could find in France especially Paris. This is just the beginning of Corsica’s appeal, it’s like living at a place you’ve always dreamt of. The dramatic beaches and rugged mountains sum it all up.

View from the upper part

View from the upper part

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Yann Polewka : transforming house music to a whole new exciting thing

Blessed with superior electronic music knowledge than most of kids at his age, Yann has a deep passion in house and techno music. His talent is yet to be acknowledged by a lot of house music lovers, but it will be sooner or later before he makes that big step to take himself to a whole new level.

Born in the capital of Brittany, Rennes in 1993, Yann is enjoying his promising life as a student of communication at the University of Rennes 2 in the same city where he was born. Still lives with his family, he also has a sister and a brother who has been a DJ for a while now. It was largely due to his brother who influenced Yann to start loving music since a very young age and lately making/producing music since more than one and a half years ago. We could all say house and techno music lives in his blood, it’s simply an element that could not be separated with him, something which has become his passion for living.

While his elder brother introduced him to the world of house music, it was Daft Punk’s album “Homework” that inspired Yann to produce the same style of music. As heard in almost all of his songs, there has always been a good reference of Daft Punk. A deep-bass element combined with a good “kick” during the song are very familiar in his songs. In his eyes, electronic music has no limits and that’s what he’s trying to do, pushing electronic music as far as he can, but not too violent nor too lame. Yann also sometimes puts hip-hop, jazz, or soul elements in his songs, just to mix it up a little bit. His latest own EP was called “Banal” which was released at the end of last October, earning rave reviews on his Soundcloud page.

Yann playing with a DJ set

Performing under the stage-name of “Yann Polewka”, his first ever EP was released under Glacis Records. This record label was founded in March 2012, they are looking to create a whole new level of music, a sound which takes you to a délicate and a sophisticated atmosphere as well as mixing music with style and art. Yann’s principe has always been creating songs that he likes so he could explore more into what he’s producing. It might be a little bit weird and tough for some people to understand his music but he’s not far from making one that will be liked by everyone.

At only 20 years of age, Yann Polewka has a dream becoming a big-name DJ, a dream which he admitted could be a little bit complicated. But at the same time he’s starting to make his name in the electronic music industry in France and all eyes should be watching him for the near future. His strong passion in electronic music would only bring excitement to all of us. Even if one day he stops producing songs, he will always stay in the musical industry, that’s what I call passion and obsession ! With a bit more consistency on his works, he can go beyond what he’s been dreaming for years.

❝ Music is an essential part of my life, I love music so much that it would be almost impossible for me to stop creating songs after songs. ❞ – Yann Polewka

With numerous EPs yet to be released, it’s worth a look to check out his Soundcloud page ! So stay tuned !

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Ruthless Arsenal back to their best

Per Mertesacker celebrating his first goal for the club

With some of the players performing to the level of expectation set by the fans earlier this season, nothing gets much better than seeing Arsenal thumping arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur on the North London derby day. With living legends like Thierry Henry and Sol Campbell watching from the stands, the pressure was high for Arsenal.

Nerves and anxiety were familiar around the Arsenal fans before the game. Arsenal were without a win in their last 3 matches before yesterday’s match and collecting three points was a must for the team to keep their hopes alive of finishing in the top-4. With the likes of Podolski and Cazorla back to their best, Arsenal enjoyed a 5-2 win against ten-man Tottenham whose bad-boy striker Adebayor was dully sent-off for a rash tackle on Cazorla inside the 20 minutes.

Tottenham started off brightly, creating chance after chance and almost took the lead when former Arsenal captain William Gallas hitting the back of the net only for his goal was rightly ruled offside. A couple of minutes later, another former Arsenal player Emmanuel Adebayor set up a typically hectic meeting with a 10th minute opener at the Emirates Stadium to silence the abusing Arsenal fans. He poached in the rebound after Wojciech Szczesny (I still have difficulties pronouncing his name !) could only palm Jermaine Defoe’s shot. A nightmare for the constantly vulnerable Arsenal defence.

But Adebayor’s flying start ended in a terrible fashion. In the 18th minute, he was shown a straight red for a studs-up sliding challenge which hit Cazorla’s ankle. A moment which sparked a controversy between both teams. Adebayor could only blame himself as he walked off down the tunnel jeered by the Arsenal fans. His team could only hold onto their lead for six minutes before Mertesacker’s fantastic header from a Walcott’s cross equalised for the home-side. That was the German’s first ever goal for the club after joining in more than a year ago, a goal which came at the right time for his team.

The wild challenge which resulted in a straight red card for Adebayor

At this moment of the match, Cazorla was enjoying a good spell on the pitch, orchestrating his team from the first until the last minute of the match. Same goes to Podolski who had a fantastic match, both in attack and in defence, he made 4 tackles in total during the match.

The home-side, enjoying possession, took the lead in the 42nd minute through Podolski’s first ever goal at the North London derby. Another new signing also continued his good form as he poached in a Cazorla’s low cross just before the break, taking his tally to 5 goals in as many matches.

At the beginning of the second half, André Villas-Boas had to take a gamble to get back into the game. He took off both full-backs Kyle Naughton and Kyle Walker, replacing them with Clint Dempsey and fans-favourite Michael Dawson. Tottenham were playing with 3 centre-backs in the second half. Arsenal capitalised again when Podolski burst on the left-hand side and sent a low cross which Cazorla finished it in fine fashion to make the match out of reach for Tottenham.

Gareth Bale gave the visitors a consolation goal before Theo Walcott put the game into bed with a goal in stoppage-time. The match finished with the same scoreline as last season’s fixture. Arsenal were easily dominating possession after the sending-off with Arteta controlling the game from the middle of the park where Tottenham left so much space after Adebayor got sent-off. Jack Wilshere also deserved the spotlight in this match what turned out to be his best game so far in this season, but I feel he’s still got room for improvement tho, he has to be more precise with his long-passing.

Lessons to be learned : Find that belief, be confident ! At 3-1 up at the second-half Arsenal were trying too hard to protect the lead which give our rivals a space to attack. Our game is based on attack so we should not be defending that deep especially against a ten-man team.

Man of the match : It’s between Cazorla and Podolski. Podolski was clinical and effective yet again and he also made a lot of defensive contributions notably that tackle on Gareth Bale. Keep in mind that Bacary Sagna played another solid match.

The talking point : ” Arsenal will always score but they will always concede goals too ! “

What to expect : Confidence is high, I can smell a win against Montpellier is around the corner. But be aware we still have players like Diaby, Gibbs, and Rosicky out injured who could still play a part this season.

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Bruce Lee : Not Just An Ordinary Actor

Born in Chinatown, San Francisco in 1940, Bruce Lee is not just an ordinary actor for me. Expert in martial arts, Lee also majored in philosophy at the University of Washington. He funded his study by teaching martial arts. Bruce Lee was introduced into films at the age of 6 by his father who was a famous Cantonese opera star. Credited in more than 25 films in his short life, he also produced 3 films during his film career.

Bruce Lee (right) and his bestfriend Dan Inosanto

The 5’7″ man whom I considered the best and the most inspirational martial artist in the 20th century not only he got power and speed, but he also had the brain. He was known for being able to speak in four languages and Lee also wrote some poems too. One of my favourite quotes was…

❝ Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it. ❞ – Bruce Lee

Fast forward to his later years, Lee was once banned by his doctor to continue practicing his martial-arts. But through his determination and willingness he still managed to perform in a couple of films before his death. On 20 July 1973, Lee complained of a headache and was given aspirin and muscle relaxation drug by his colleague, Taiwanese actress Betty Ting Pei. He took a nap afterwards and by dinner time he was still not awake. By the time he was found by his colleague, he was rushed to hospital but he died quickly afterwards. Lee was only 32 years of age.

Over the years, the image and the perception of Bruce Lee has been a winding one. From his popularity on the screen (notably the film “Enter The Dragon”) which was arguably the best martial-art film of all time, to being respected as an artist, innovator, teacher. His legacy would always play an important part in the history of Asian American culture. Lee’s work throughout his life will always be remembered by the world.

❝ Knowing is not enough, you must apply. Willing is not enough, you must do. ❞ – Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee (right) and his family

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