Sunday, March 6, 2011

Little Things That Count - The Weekly Roundup, March 6

Now that the awards season is over, we can resume whatever we were doing before the TSN vs.TKS showdown (that is, The Social Network vs. The King's Speech). Therefore, one of the things that's been M.I.A. on this blog, namely The Weekly Roundup, is now back in all its glory.

Music: A lot of nice singles have surfaced lately (scroll down for a list of recent releases), which is a good thing after all that January blah and the slow movement that we usually see at the beginning of a new year. The very talented Adele is having the time of her life right now: she hit no.1 in both UK singles and UK album charts and across the pond, where she has debuted at no.1 in the US album chart, how about that? Her current single, Someone Like You, became huge following her great performance at the BRIT Awards last month. It's a beautiful, stylish, goosebumps-inducing ballad and you can see the much-talked about live performance from the BRIT awards here or you can listen to the album version here, just to compare.

Movie: I'm going to go with Biutiful this week, still fresh from the awards season. Even if it was generally overlooked, it found its moment when it mattered the most: the Oscars. It was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film and Best Actor for Javier Bardem, which really made me happy because Bardem absolutely deserved this nomination. I happen to like Alejandro González Iñárritu's movies and Biutiful is no exception. Yes, it's a long movie (2 hours and a half), yes it's sad, it's in Spanish, it's not an easy watch, but boy did Javier Bardem make it totally worthwhile by giving one of the very best performances of his career. And if you're an Iñárritu fan, here's a link to a nice interview with him and longtime collaborator and friend Guillermo Del Toro. 

Perfume: I'm still rotating my "winter perfumes"'s STILL winter, darn it! Subzero temps and snow in March really push my buttons, but maybe if I ignore it, it will go away, right? So until I'm justified to take out my "spring stash", this is what you'll get. But for now, here's one that can actually be worn in warmer weather as well, if applied with a light hand

This week's choice comes from Maison Francis Kurkdjian, the amazingly talented perfumer who has previously created exquisite fragrances for both mainstream and niche brands: Guerlain, Jean Paul Gaultier, Narciso Rodriguez, Parfums MDCI, Indult. He launched his own line of perfumes in 2009 to rave reviews and this is one of the winners in that line: Lumiere Noire Pour Femme. It's a plush, sultry juice with notes of rose, pimento, narcissus and patchouli. It's not very floral (which is a good thing in my book, as I don't do overly floral perfumes) and the patchouli is very well blended so it doesn't bother me (as I often have issues with this note when it is too harsh and/or prominent).

Food/Dessert: For a quick and delicious chocolate fix, there's always Lindt and Ritter Sport as far as I'm concerned. Oh wait...I went straight for the dessert first. Nevermind. It's the best part anyway, at least for people like me whose sweet tooth takes the best of them. Let's carry on. I also found a little darling from Loacker (the Italian brand that makes those awesome wafers and other yummy chocolate specialities) at my local supermarket, which was precious because I rarely see Loacker products in my neck of woods anymore. When I saw it on the shelf,  I almost screamed (yes, their chocolate wafers are THAT good), so it was one of those "GIMME. THIS. NOW. GOTTA HAVE IT" moments for me. I grabbed 2 boxes and left the store in a state of utter delight. I am easily pleased if you let me loose in the chocolate aisle. As far as actual food goes, I came across this recipe yesterday - Baked Cheesy Chicken Penne - and it looks easy and yummy. You can easily adjust it to your own liking, by replacing some of the ingredients or adding to it.

Blast from the past: Rolling Stones - Love Is Strong. Because it's the Stones. And a great song. And the video was directed by David Fincher. So what if they won't give him the darn Oscar that he deserves? The fans will always appreciate him and buy tickets to see his movies. Same goes for you, Chris Nolan. Keep making smart, great movies. You are loved.


What else has been happening recently?

In music: 

Jennifer Lopez has premiered the video for her new single, On The Floor and considering the fact that the song has hit no.1 on iTunes (knocking Lady Gaga off the top spot) and that she debuted at no.9 in this week's Billboard Hot 100, I would say it's a nice comeback. Plus she looks hot in the video. Way to go, Jen !

Arcade Fire, the band that surprised (almost) everyone by winning the Grammy for Album of the Year at last month's Grammy Awards, have a new single, called City with No Children that will be officially released on March, 13.

Katy Perry's new single is called E.T. and the single/video version features Kanye West. The song has already debuted at no.8 in the US this week and the video will premiere very soon. And she's kind of rocking the Cleopatra-esque look on the single cover.

Kings of Leon's new single off the album Come Around Sundown is called The Immortals.

Tiesto is back with a new single, finally entering the UK Top 40 and other charts across Europe. The song is called C'Mon (Catch'Em by Surprise) featuring rapper Busta Rhymes.

Kanye West has recently premiered his new video, All of the Lights, that features strobe-lit images of himself, Rihanna and Kid Cudi and visual references to Gaspar Noe's 2009 film Enter The Void. And since I mentioned Rihanna, she is featured in the new Nivea campaign "100 Years Skincare for Life", celebrating the centennial of the brand. I am not really a Rihanna fan, but I can sure appreciate beauty when I see it and I think this ad is a nice shot of her, showcasing her natural beauty. Much better than the overdone, cheap look that we see on her sometimes (sorry RiRi, but it's true).

Following their great performance at the Grammy Awards, English folk rock band, Mumford & Sons have released the video for their single The Cave and guess who's a fan? None other than Timbaland who wrote on his Twitter that he's been listening to their album and loving it.

Lady Gaga holds the no.1 spot on Billboard Hot 100 for a 3rd consecutive week with Born This Way.

Hurts, the British duo, premiered their new video for the song Sunday.

In movies/TV shows:

Tom Hanks was invited on Jimmy Kimmel last week and aside from being his awesome self, he also offered a sneak peek of his new movie, Larry Crowne (which he also directed).

We got to watch a second trailer for the movie Water for Elephants, the adaptation of Sara Gruen's novel, directed by Francis Lawrence. The movie stars Reese Witherspoon, Robert Pattinson and Cristopher Waltz (yep, that's right, the guy who won the Oscar for his performance in Inglorious Basterds).

The trailer and movie poster for Paul Giamatti's new film, Win Win have been released.
Avatar 2 is going to be set underwater.  

In case you missed Kate Winslet's lovely photos for Glamour Magazine, there's a link (excerpts from interview included). 

How I Met Your Mother has been renewed for two seasons.

Celebrities such as Penelope Cruz, Jeff Bridges, Olivia Wilde and Queen Latifah were photographed as Disney characters by the great Annie Leibovitz. 

The lovely Diane Lane has been cast in the new Superman movie.

In fashion:

Tom Ford has opened a new boutique on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. In case you're in the neighborhood, do go in and take a look.

John Galliano has been fired from Dior.

Lady Gaga made her catwalk debut at Thierry Mugler's Fall 2011 fashion show and she bought the entire collection.

The new faces of Burberry are Tara Ferry, Bryan Ferry's son and Tali Lennox, the daughter of Annie Lennox.

Christina Hendricks (of Mad Men fame) is the face of Vivienne Westwood's new jewelry collection.

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