The Shape of Water: A Review

2/5 Stars

                I typically find myself enjoying movies that are considered weird. From the satirical Sharknado movies to the mentally disturbing movie Teeth (warning: if you have a light stomach, do not watch that.) Even with this, The Shape of Water takes things to a whole new level. This movie is absolutely absurd, both in good and bad ways, but it takes it way too far at some points.

This review is going to contain mild spoilers for the movie. The movie begins with a mute woman named Eliza in her apartment. The scene opens with her morning routine consisting of waking up, boiling eggs for lunch, taking a bath, and (not joking) masturbating in said bath. This is the beginning scene and it exposes us to something like that with absolutely no relevance to the plot. Oh well, let’s move on.

With that shocking scene out of the way, Eliza goes to work as a janitor for an undisclosed, secret government facility. The time period of this movie is eventually discovered to be around the Cold War. One of the more likable characters comes into scene here: a fellow worker named Zelda. She is very humorous and talkative. They two discover a project government workers had taken a humanoid amphibian creature from South America which was worshiped by the natives as a God.

Alright, so it sounds like an awesome concept for a movie, cool! The creature is soon discovered to be semi intelligent as it can display emotion. So what went wrong?

The problem starts with Eliza starts developing feelings for the creature. No, not as a friend, not as a pet, as a LOVER. She starts developing romantic feelings for the “Asset” as the movie calls it. Not only this, but her close friends (all two of them anyway) are TOTALLY cool with it. Their reactions to everything is simply absurd. There were times the entire theater was laughing at how strange the events in the movie were.

The movie does do a couple things right. Since it takes place in the days of the Cold War, there are evident race and sexual orientation issues at hand. One man even goes as far as to say, “Man was created in God’s image. Well, at least we were,” when talking to African American Zelda. The way the characters overcome these obstacles is great.

Honestly, I do recommend seeing this movie solely for the experience of having a movie make you ask yourself “What?” every five minutes. Did I enjoy watching it? A little bit. Still, I think this movie is way too highly rated from other review websites, and this does not represent the feelings of the average consumer.

Review: Sid Meier’s Civilization 6 (Before Rise and Fall)

3.7 out of 5 stars

After I played around 2,000 hours on Civ 6, I decided to do a review on the game that at points I simply could not put down. The sixth installment in the civilization series, Civ 6 keeps some of the vital gameplay mechanics from earlier games, yet adds its own aspects to the franchise. One of the most notable, and game changing additions, was the district mechanic. Both tall and wide strategies were effected by the “unstacking” of cities into separate districts within said city’s borders. In terms of gameplay, this is a way of balancing empires, and insuring that development vs. expansion choices be made with caution. Depending on one’s strategy and style of play, some districts may never make it off the assembly line, but this makes things simply more interesting. In addition to moving buildings into districts came the building wonders on tiles mechanic. Overall, this version of unstacking cities wasn’t really my favorite. Other changes aside, the “starting lineup” for each game or expansion is crucial. Just like it’s predecessors, the civilizations playable from the start were exactly what you would expect, aside from the Kongo, Scythia, Norway, and Sumeria, who probably should have appeared in DLC’s or expansions. Sadly, none of us can get all of our favorites right off the bat, but these, well I really doubt people wanted the Kongo over Korea, Scythia over The Ottomans, or Sumeria over Poland. Luckily DLCs were quick to follow after the initial release giving us the culture bombing Jadwiga of Poland, and the first appearance of Australia in the series. Others followed, and with the Rise and Fall expansion coming up, which I can’t wait to review, what’s keeping me from giving this higher stars? Well, first is my unpopular opinion that diplomatic victories were fun to pursue in Civ 5. In Civ 6, there is hardly any diplomatic options, let alone a victory type. Second is the art style. Civ 5 has this eerie, ominous vibe in early game, and slowly progresses to a triumphant vibe as you march on an enemy’s capital or watch one of your cities get nuked by the weirdly aggressive Gandhi. Civ 6 has this 5 year-old playroom feel for most of the game, then the five year old turns 6 just in time for Brazil to steal the finial great people of each game. Regardless of art style, Civ 6’s gameplay is undeniably fun. Both complaints aside, at this point in each game’s career, Civ 5 is just more fun, and that’s ok. Civ 6 is young, and promising things are coming, but for right now I suggest arguing with your friends over multiplayer or watching the 9th coup happen in a city-state in single-player, in Civ 5, mainly because of just how much more content it has at the moment. And remember, Poland can into space :). 

Doki Doki Literature Club

Doki Doki Literature Club

4.5 out of 5 stars

Doki Doki Literature Club is a visual novel. It is tagged on the gaming platform, Steam as “anime” and “psychological horror.” But it does not appear that way on the surface. On the surface, Doki Doki is a very typical dating simulator.

I would not usually consider myself the type of person to play what some would call an “anime” game. But, this visual novel really intrigued me. My friend had mentioned the game to me and had brought up the idea of playing it, that’s why I did. Normally, I would never have even thought about playing anything even remotely like this.

The novel is full of twists and turns that help develop extremely complex characters. No matter what path you try to take, there is only one ending, which is extremely shocking. Because I won’t give away any spoilers, I can’t say much more about the game in itself. But, I can say that no matter what you think you may know about the game, it will most definitely surprise you.

Overall, Doki Doki Literature Club is definitely worth a play. Even if you aren’t normally the type to play video games or to like anime you will probably enjoy this visual novel dating simulator. I would say that this game is suitable for any age, so long as you aren’t “easily disturbed.”

Review: 2017

4 out of 5 stars

Ahhhhh, 2017. For most this year was big on certain qualities such as “disappointment” or “depression”, but for me 2017 was just a GOOD year. Personal success aside, we got Game of Thrones season 7, countless games and movies, and not to mention some positive news for the future (assuming we make it there). Yes, yes 2017 was hated on for things like North Korea or Trump, but I think it’s easy to overlook those “less than satisfying” moments in 2017 and realize, it was better than other years. Not to mention the founding of this website of course! Thanks for such a great year, and to 2018, bring it on (just not too hard).

Review: Star Wars The Last Jedi

3 out of 5 stars

Before I begin, spoilers ahead! Last weekend I went to see the Last Jedi. We thought we needed to order tickets ahead of time, so just in case, we did for a Saturday night, 6:15 showing. All I could think about was watching one of my favorite series, yet again on the big screen. We arrived 10 minutes early expecting a rush, but we were pleasantly surprised to find little traffic in the lobby. We collected our snacks and entered the theater only to find countless empty seats. A few filled up as the previews progressed, but as the famous blue words hit the screen, many seats were reflecting them and not people. Possibly just a coincidence, or maybe something else, but regardless, this sad theater reflected on how I felt about the movie, rather disappointed. Now let’s begin with the movie as a whole. First we should address the fact that the writers played many of their cards in this movie. In other words, what’s next! Some may get giddy with excitement with this unknown feeling, but think back to other Star Wars movies. We knew what needed to be addressed in the next film based on what we learned in the current film. At the end here, if feels like we’re looking toward an entirely new trilogy and not just a new movie. Second is the pacing. Looking back, this movie felt almost like a season finale of Game of Thrones, which I absolutely love by the way. Characters with some plot development are cut off in the middle of the movie after refusing to even put up a fight. Two characters come to mind; Snoke and Phasma. I loved the prospect of Snoke being an almost Emperor-esk villain who makes up for the lack of “big picture” ideals Kylo Ren holds, and his power made him seem like he could be even harder to take down, yet still he’s defeated by what, a flick of a force wrist! And let’s not drop Phasma. She recieved well deserved hype, and fans thought she would do something with her life in this movie. Nope. She simply failed to executed two resistance fighters in time, and then proceeded to lose yet again! That brings me to Rose. I loved the actor who gave a great performance, but why? We had our cast and crew and the writers      decide to just throw another character into the story? She had decent development, I guess I just didn’t like her and that’s me. For Star Wars Fans, there were some positives. The Guards in Snoke’s death sequence put up a better fight than he did, which was pretty cool, and the Codebreaker’s acting was admirable, but it just didn’t stop certain plot holes from widening, as addressed earlier. On a lighter tone, let’s talk about the weapon designer city. Two alternate scenarios would have been perfect! One, the city could have been familiar, like Coruscant or Cloud City, and two, the codebreaker could/should have been Lando. Just think about it, “rolling at a high stakes table”, that’s Lando alright. Saying this won’t change the movie, but hopefully they will change the next one to justify what was given to us in The Force Awakens. In conclusion, I think the movie barley earned 3 stars, and nothing more.

Review: Star Wars Battlefront 2

4 out of 5 stars

With any epic movie franchise there is bound be a video-game. Although not the first to represent the epic series on gaming platforms, it is perhaps one of my favorites because of how strong it was at launch (aside from the microtransactions). The content is strong, and the heroes, I thought, were superb! Sadly things just weren’t balanced, and some characters who were major players in the films didn’t make it in. With many DLCs promised and the release of the Last Jedi DLC, I think this game has the potential to make it up to a 4.5 if it plays it’s cards right.


Review: College Magazine Shop

3 out of 5 stars

A few weeks ago a couple of my friends and I decided to have a Secret Santa. Reluctantly I drew, and I could not have been more pleased with the result. I drew a close friend of mine! After poking around online, I came across a very nice cat-themed blanket on Despite the price, I ordered, and to this day I will say the product satisfaction my friend experienced was through the roof. For that, I applaud College Magazine Shop. So why would I give them a 3 when the product deserves a 5? The delivery time. I don’t know if it’s simply that I’ve become accustom to fast delivery in this ever changing globalized world, or the time was just that slow. The product I ordered about a week or two in advance failed to get to my doorstep in time for the party. I know, I know, it’s my fault for ordering so late, but with high prices, and other companies catering to fast delivery, I would expect the package to hit my doorstep within a business week. So, faithful reader, would I recommend purchasing from this website? Well, if you get your holiday shopping done as soon as the final piece of turkey has been consumed, then yes, order away, but if you’re like me and can be quite slow on the holiday up-take, then I would advise buying from fast delivering companies, or even going to your local mall.