Sunday, October 25, 2009

This Year's Best Movie

I've been waiting for 500 Days Of Summer since I caught wind of The Temper Trap's new single, Sweet Disposition. After hearing the song, and seeing the movie trailer, I knew that this was one movie I couldn't pass up.

The film scores perfect marks on all fronts: charming, and offbeatly-romantic leads, am a fan of JGL, but was completely enamored by Zooey's lovely eyes and wondrous personality; a rocking and lifting soundtrack, featuring Regina Spektor, The Smiths, Feist; a non-linear narrative, set out in giving the viewer pieces of a puzzle meant to be put together. Director Marc Webb put out all stops in his narrative device, and even throws in a Sliding Doors-split screen style. Even the little touches in the movie connected with me on a personal level - architecture, and an IKEA date :)

The movie was released at Sundance, and gathered enough momentum to be fit for a limited release. It was supposed to have arrived last June, but since robots, wizards and other sequels were ruling the box office, it was only wise to move it to a later date.

It's the coolest movie of the year indeed.

No spoilers to be said here - but if you're looking for a great indie flick that mixes clever with cute; spirited with emo, then this movie if for you. This movie just made my all-time list (see a couple of articles prior to this), and is competing with Garden State in that genre.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Renewing Your Passport

My passport is about to expire, and from this blog alone, you can tell that I've been busy stamping them pages away. The passport has a shelf life of about five years, and my time to renew has arrived. I wanted to play it safe, and have a travel agent apply for me, and I have one piece of advice. Don't bother!

Renewing the passport will require at least one personal appearance at your local Department Of Foreign Affairs office. Here are some tips that will help you minimise the frustration, and make your visit hassle-free.

1. Download the renewal form at . Fill it out before heading to the DFA, that way, you don't have to scramble looking for a flat surface to write on when you're there. This also means to have your requirements ready before trooping it to the office.

No one told me you can smile in the passport photo!

2. Lots of people trying to herd you to their stalls just outside the DFA. Some are agressive (too agressive) that they'll tug at you. Very strange. Ignore them, you have everything that you need listed out in the form anyway.

3. Secure an appointment slip, have your records verified, and a helpful DFA officer will assist you, and lead you to the proper venues.

4. When your appointment time has come, you will be led to the cashier where you will pay the processing fee (500 PHP for 14 days, and 750 for 7 days).

5. You will now have your details checked and inputted into the computer.

Total time spent at DFA? 1 hour and 30 minutes. I arrived 1230, in the middle of lunch time, and finished at 2pm.

After this, you can either pick up your processed passport on the given date, or have it delivered to you (the following day) for 99 PHP. I picked up my passport - arrived 1245, queued my pickup slip, and was done by 115. Very easy.

My friend, we have lots of travelling to do. I'm gonna get you dirty in no time....