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Feature Writing class, Winter 2013

Around table: Sara, Sally, Jannelle and Rajvir. In back: Anh Thi, Deeanne, Joshua, Jimmy, Ruben, Colin, Stephen, Kelsey, Jason and Kyle.

Around table: Sara, Sally, Jannelle and Rajvir. In back: Anh Thi, Deeanne, Joshua, Jimmy, Ruben, Colin, Stephen, Kelsey, Jason and Kyle.

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‘Lore’

As children, parents define your world. They teach you what’s right and wrong, how the world works, and how you should interact with others. What would you do then, if you found out the world they had made for you was a lie? Australian-German drama “Lore” seeks to answer this question by following one girl’s story through Germany in 1945.

When the Allied forces arrest her SS officer father and Nazi-supporting mother, 14-year-old Lore (pronounced LOR-ha) finds herself as mother and caretaker to her four siblings, including her infant brother Peter. Left to fend for themselves, Lore (played by newcomer Saskia Rosendahl) leads her siblings on a voyage through the Black Forest and across a hostile post-World War II Germany to the safety of their grandmother’s house near Hamburg.

Shunned at every turn and slowly understanding that the majority of people they encounter now hate them, they find one man willing to help- Thomas, a Jewish refugee.  Thomas (played with breathtaking restraint by Kai-Peter Malina) offers to help the destitute children navigate across the treacherous environment, using his Jewish identification papers to help them disguise their own heritage.

There is a palpable attraction between the two main characters, but the disgust that Lore has been taught to feel by her parents and the Hitler Youth battles against the desire to get to know the mysterious refugee. Lore’s realty and conviction crumble as they traverse hundreds of miles, with each step bringing her closer to understanding the realty of their parent’s actions and the regime they supported. As she fends for her life, she also must try to discern what kind of a person she’s fighting to be.

“Lore” is Australian director Cate Shortland’s second film, following her debut to feature length cinema with the well-received “Somersault” (2004).  The tension Shortland weaves throughout each scene is so thick that the impact of a tentative touch feels like that of a hand grenade. “Lore” truly thrusts audiences into the desperation of post- World War II and reveals a side of the war that many neglect.

Carried by the two main actors, Rosendahl and Malina, the entire cast gives achingly convincing performances that draw you in with every subtle movement they make. You feel the dirt on their hands and their hearts pounding in their chests.

Beautifully shot by cinematographer Adam Arkapaw (Animal Kingdom), the movie feels unassuming at times, glossing over visual details that may make you want to give the movie a second viewing (if you can handle the emotional upheaval it may leave you in).

The only thing audiences will be left wanting is a just a little bit more. “Lore” is a beautiful adaptation of Rachel Seiffert’s novel “The Dark Room,” which weaves the stories of three post- World War II German citizens. However, since even the attention of the book is divided between storylines, you find yourself wishing there was just a little bit more meat to it. A couple of the scenes seem convenient almost, which takes away from the historical reality the movie borrows. A few moments of brilliantly crafted symbolism help illustrate the film’s message, but ultimately are counterproductive, as it merely helps fictionalize the story.

“Lore” in unrated is in German with English subtitles. It has a runtime of 109 minutes and is playing at Camera 3 in San Jose and at the Nickelodeon in Santa Cruz.

Stars: 3 out of 4

Journalism21b overall report

Colin Blake

Journalism21b

3/21/13

Journalism 21b with Farideh Dada

            Journalism, this quarter, has been an exercise in focus and commitment. With the some would say shaky start to this quarter, given the verbal spats with the professor, I am glad it has blossomed into a healthy forum for discussion of topics.

On top of having the privilege of being one of the first classes at De Anza Professor Dada teaches our classmates have been exceptional and conversational, whereas many classrooms in the community college level are filling with pseudo cadaver students. I think that is partially because of the environment, in its all inclusiveness, which brings students out of the shadowy dead zones in class to the forefront of debate.

The assignments in this class could be defined as rigorous depending on perspective and ability to follow instructions. Given that regular attendance is recorded and adherence to advice of the professor is practiced, the assignments are engaging and can promote real thought upon issues of concern. Deadlines for all assignments are fair along with varying levels of flexibility given real time changes to the schedule or involvement of unforeseen circumstances.

On a side note, if one has missed a couple of assignments Professor Dada provides a multitude of extra credit assignments near the end of the quarter, allowing for the procurement of vital extra points.

Coming to class is generally a pleasurable experience. Professor Dada has a genuine smile on her face and appears to be in the mood of providing expert tutelage for the focus of journalism. Apa style is her, and the departments, standard writing form and strict commitment upon the principles therein, are of paramount importance for journalism21b.

When it comes to improvements for the class, there could be a few. I think that some of topics could be a little more debatable. For example, when given the opportunity to free write a feature story for extra credit, I chose gun control, which I think, is an issue of extraordinary importance. Topics like that would be beneficial for they focus on real issue that are in play within the political battle ground currently, while still following apa guidelines of course.

One other small item I’d like to address is the group work function of this class. Although I praised the atmosphere in the class earlier, I do have reservations about the immobility of people and the largely unchanged tables the entire quarter. However uncomfortable changing groups is, it is nothing in comparison to complacency of human contact in which we do not meet and expand our horizons socially.

All in all this quarter has been fun and advantageous for the betterment of my writing.

Oz the Great and Powerful review

Colin Blake

Journalism 21b

3/21/13

Oz the Great and Powerful: To go or not to go

With high expectations going into the movie, Oz the Great and Powerful, to describe it in one word, was palatable. There seems to be this idea in Hollywood that there are no new movies to be made. Remaking or continuing movie titles that have long been laid to rest seems to be the modus operandi for producers these days.

That said, the latest Oz installment is entertaining and sticks somewhat true to the original story line with numerous references to the original turn of the century classic. That will always be the challenge of these movies: creating something entertaining for the attention-deficit oriented masses while still harkening back to the intent of the original material, in this case the Oz books.

The cast of this movie is talented no question. There is no shortage of handsome men and beautiful women playing their rolls with class. Oz, James Franco, plays in a believable manner and did not stumble or bungle his roll, making the storyline, in this imaginary complex, plausible. He is portrayed early on as a womanizer who performs for a traveling circus, a far cry from a world-saving wizard.

All three witches, taking into account Mila Kunis’s staggering good looks, could be described by a single word: vibrant. Perhaps the trailer was intentionally misleading, for the identity of the evil witch was quite a surprise. Without making a debauchery of one of the  main twists of the movie, all that can be said is family fights are always the most tendentious.

This film is unique in the sense that characters in the land of Oz are proprietary to that realm alone, there are no cameo appearances of recycled characters from similar films. The landscape presented to viewers is exactly as Oz of the 21st century should be: colorful, beaming, sparkly, and fanciful. The computer-generated imagery implemented for the movie’s many far-fetched terrains is seamless and clear. The sound effects were fitting and robust, while still audible in the loudest moments.

The problem with movies like Oz the Great and Powerful is that they will never be as good as the original because it does not push boundaries of filmmaking or change ideas. However, Just because it does not question society or change the status quo, does not mean it cannot tempt the imagination to jump right in and view a spectacle of creation that is out of this world, which is exactly what this film does.

After the scant criticism, mainly about the origin and intent of the film, it is safe to say that Oz is a great family and couples evening adventure, and for that reason, it is a “go.”

Movie Review: Argo

The film “Argo” is based on a true story about the Iran hostage crisis in 1979. The movie came out in October of 2012. The movie begins with the invasion of the United States embassy in Tehran, Iran and from there centers on the six people that manage to escape during the invasion. The six are held up in hiding 24/7 as the Iranian revolutionaries are trying to find them and possibly kill them.

This suspenseful flick will keep you guessing as twists and turns in the plot and characters are constantly forming and you wonder who’s on their side. The film has the name “Argo” for the plan to get them out of Iran safely.

The plan is developed by Tony Mendez (played by Ben Affleck) who is a worker for the CIA of the United States. He figures that there may be a way to get the six across the Iranian border if they are presented as something other than American.

So he comes up with a brilliant plan to make a spin-off of the movie Star Wars called Argo and to make it seem like the six Americans are six Canadian filmmakers that are on a scouting trip to find an exotic location to film their movie.

He travels to the Hollywood to find people who will help him make a fake movie. He finds a make-up artist and a film producer and they go to work. Once the movie is established as believable Mendez goes to Iran. The people in hiding are not so positive about his plan but realize that if they fail then his life is also on the line so the go along with it .

As the plot develops, people around them are starting to change. Tensions build as their identities and lives are uncertain. The six people are obviously unsure and nervous, the CIA is becoming edgy, all the while Mendez is trying to provide them with new identities and information to make sure that his plan works out well.

When it finally comes time to put the plan into action; can they? There are factors all around them. A housekeeper who may know their secret, a suspicious police force, and a rebellious revolutionary group that are waiting to tear them apart. Directed by Ben Affleck and produced by Grant Heslov, Ben Affleck and George Clooney.

Classmate Profile: Rajvir Kaur

Rajvir Kaur came to the United States when she was five and a half years old. They came to Silicon Valley; San Jose to be exact.

As for her childhood Kaur recalls that the area was “kind of racist” at the time and says that there were not many Indian people in the area then. Now that time has passed and she is older, people have apologized and the area is not so racist because there are more Indian people in the area.

As she grew up, she experienced the cultural differences of her heritage. It wasn’t really accepted by her family that girls could play sports. “All I wanted to do was play sports,” said Kaur.

Kaur graduated for Silver Creek High School and started a medical school program at a place that is now closed. She hoped to get a job from that but after she graduated from the program she ended up at De Anza College instead.

She now plans to go into children’s social work after college and is minoring in journalism. She has not planned too far into her future though. She says, “Whatever happens happens.”

Newspaper Critique: On time online

I write for a weekly school newspaper but when I need to get my local news, I go online. MercuryNews.com is an excellent source because you get up to the minute news.

I was looking at this one article and it was posted just two minutes before I started reading it. That is what I call news. They have five main pages called news, sports, entertainment, lifestyles, and images of the day. All the pieces that first come up for these five pages are all current, like within the last week or two.

However, once you go further into the categories and you start to get into older news. Some were last year’s news. Personally, I think that if you’re going to keep old news on your website then you should put it all in an archives page or something of that sort.

In my opinion you should not mix old news with new news. For people that are not as well informed about things going on in the world, this could confuse someone. Plus, why would I want to read about something that happened a year ago in the news. Even if it was groundbreaking news then, I doubt that it still is.

The fact is, people want to know about what is happening around them now. For example, when someone wants to know what the weather is going to be like tomorrow, you don’t pull up last year’s weather charts and tell them it’s going to rain because it did last year.

And, for those of you who think this isn’t a fair comparison, let me tell you this: On the news drop-down box there’s a category called storify, in storify there’s a piece called “Oh snap! Facebook buying Instagram. This was posted on MercuryNews.com on April 9 of 2012. That’s almost a year ago and it’s a story about Facebook buying Instagram and peoples reaction to it.

Who cares about this anymore? That is old news just like no one cares that it rained this time last year. For the most part, I really enjoy getting my news from this site but please, let the old news go.

Class Review: Learning with Dada

Journalism 21b, taught by Farideh Dada is required class for any and all Journalism majors at De Anza College. Farideh Dada is an intelligent and bright professor and also well experienced. She is informative and fair, but also gives a lot of homework. The class load is not too bad, especially if you pay attention in class and you know what you’re doing.

For every paper, every week, there is a peer review time and you get to go through the paper you wrote with your classmates. Dada gives a lot of good notes and lectures and gives you the benefit of her experience in her writing. There are plenty of in class discussions and activities that are very helpful when looking at your own pieces and critiquing others in the peer review sessions.

AP style is a must know in the journalism world and having the AP stylebook is always handy when writing an article. At the end of class Dada has us go up to the board and write out words or phrases from the stylebook that other students might not have known. That way is good practice to learn AP style. There are also weekly quizzes that AP style gets applied to.

In this class writing and just generally doing your homework is very important but gaining the experience and knowing how to write is even more so. The knowledge that this class has force fed me from all the homework and quizzes is something that I’ll carry with me when I go to work for a real newspaper and not just the school newspaper. I’m grateful for Dada’s tough love in grading and tons of homework because it keeps me on my feet and makes me think.

Feature writing and reporting is a fun class and a fun section to write for. For those people that are journalism majors and have to take this class, if you don’t want to do a lot of writing, don’t take this class. However, if you don’t want to do a lot of writing anyway, why did you choose this major?

Dada is a great teacher and even though I’ve almost gotten pencil blisters from writing so much, I know that this is what’s good for me to develop my writing skills and overall knowledge in journalism.

The class was filled with different people with different ideas of what to write and how to write it. For the most part, I enjoyed the differences of opinion, but I’ll offer one last cliché to the whiners and complainers that couldn’t take it. If you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the newsroom.

Restaurant Review: Bonchon chicken

Bonchin chicken is a restaurant that originated in Busan, Korea. Bonchon is a Korean word that means “Orignal Village”. Bonchon’s website states “Just as people yearn for their hometown, we hope that our customers will seek our amazingly crispy, juicy, and flavorful chicken wherever they are.” I’m not sure about that analogy, but I’m sure about the flavors.

The first thing I noticed when I walked into the restaurant was the sweet smell of their chicken cooking. My husband and I were seated immediately. This was probably because the restaurant was half empty. I didn’t really think about that though, as our waitress/server was very attentive and pleasant.

There were probably about four different tvs going and music playing in the background so the wait for our food wasn’t that noticeable. Looking around I noticed all different types of people enjoying themselves. I would say this restaurant would e ideal for any occasion, from first date to family dinner.

This place can also be summed up in one word: simple. Simple décor, simple staff uniform, jeans and a black t-shirt, and simple menu. If you order the small, medium or large chicken order like I did, you get two choices of flavors of the chicken; soy garlic or spicy hot garlic.

We chose to do half and half. Also, with our large order, that includes about 20 pieces of white meat chicken, we get two large sides. We chose kimchi coleslaw and biscuits. Now, I’ve called this restaurant simple; the food is a whole other story.

They brought our food out on a large white platter and set it down between us. The smell and the color hit you at once since they’re equally as vibrant. The smell is sweet and spicy and of the chicken are amber-orange-brown from the sauces and the dipping sauces, the one for the spicy chicken, a spicy mayo, and the other for the soy, a sweet chili sauce. The sweet chili had a harmony of reds and oranges while the other was creamy orangish pink.

They taste even better than they look. The sweet chili on the soy garlic chicken dances on your taste buds and makes you mouth water. The other makes you want water. “Spicy hot” is an appropriate phrase for these blazing chicken strips.

As a fan of spicy food I appreciated them and enjoyed them. However, for anyone who is not used to eating spicy food may not be up for these make-your-nose-run-hot chicken pieces. I can’t complain though. The meal is just as satisfying as the price. 20 pieces of chicken for about 20 dollars; that sounds fine to me. Though this place may appear simple, the flavor is where it’s at. I will be back for more.

Class Review

Class Review
By: Jimmy Osburn

Journalism 21B has had some high points as well some low points for the Winter 2013 quarter. The work itself has not been too difficult, but the pace at which the course moves can prove difficult for a student who cannot devote 100% of their time to schoolwork.
As someone with a full course schedule as well as a 50+ hour work week, I am always grateful to courses that allow for a little wiggle room and flexibility. You won’t find that in this course.
The exercises are without question useful to garnering the skills you need to make it as a successful feature writer. From critiquing professionally written articles to lead writing and checking for APA errors in the weekly quiz, this course will arm you with the essentials.
One of the more disconcerting areas of the course is the idea that it will be run more as a democracy and that if something isn’t working, the class should talk about it and see if there is a compromise. This is what Professor Farideh Dada explains to the students on the first day. This does not hold up to be true.
For example, it is forbidden to use laptops or tablets or any electronic devices in order to take notes (and there are a lot of notes). Everything must be completed by hand.
If you’re like me, you’re in a world of trouble. Some people just lack the ability to write quickly or in legible shorthand notes. When it was brought up in class that some students need to be able take notes using computers, it was shot down without much of a discussion. The reason being that some people may use it to play video games or surf the web.
The question is “so?” I think it’s important to remember that we’re here because we want to be here; because we’re paying to be here. I am almost 30 years old, I’m not going to a community college to play video games.
There is a lot of material packed into each hour and fifteen minute session, so be prepared to take no more than 12-15 minutes per assignment (excluding quizzes which are generally 20 minutes), meaning you must work quickly.
Papers are due every Tuesday and Thursday and late work is accepted at the cost of a lower grade, naturally.
The course is useful. Professor Dada is kind and pleasant, but some flexibility in the work and rules is needed in order to maximize the chances of success for all students enrolled. Not just the ones with plenty of time on their hands.
If I am grading, Journalism 21B receives a solid C+.

Wieners For MS

Young Girl Raises Nearly $7,000 for MS Society with the Help of Oscar Mayer’s Wienermobile
By: Jimmy Osburn

If you ask Kelsey Krueger what her favorite part of the weekend was, you might expect her to respond with activities like hanging out with friends, shopping, or talking on the phone; typical answers for a day in the life of most 11-year-old girls. But after raising nearly $7,000 for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, this was no ordinary day for the sixth-grader.

After being one of just 20 winners in Oscar Meyer’s “Win the Ride of Your Life” contest with her 100-word essay about multiple sclerosis – the contest had 75,000 entries –, Krueger was awarded a $5,000 donation to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and a visit from Oscar Mayer’s famous Wienermobile. Krueger, who attends Madison Elementary School, entered the contest during the summer after watching a TV commercial.

“I thought it was a good essay, but I didn’t really expect it to win,” says Krueger of her surprise at being named a winner.

In addition to the donation made from Oscar Mayer, Krueger decided to use her time with the Wienermobile to raise even more money for the MS society by capitalizing on the visit from the 27-foot-long vehicle shaped like a hot dog.

While neighbors and their children came out to catch a glimpse and take pictures, Krueger had an idea:

“I thought it would be a great idea to use the Wienermobile to sell hot dogs for MS Society,” says Krueger.

By selling franks and root beer floats for $1 each, as well as Wienerwhistles, bracelets, face painting, and donations – Krueger raised another $1,923.37.

Gordon Ross, along with his wife Melissa, brought his two sons out to see the Wienermobile up close and personal, and to take a few pictures.

“They like cars. And all I’ve ever seen of the Wienermobile was on TV commercials,” says Ross, a 42-year-old Electrolux employee.

Their son, 9-year-old Tyler Ross was smiling ear-to-ear while standing beside the Wienermobile, and the third-grader plans to e-mail pictures they took to relatives.

Raising money for a cause like multiple sclerosis appears to fit right in with what Oscar Mayer prides itself on: values.

Eyra Dzakuma, a 23-year-old with a bachelor’s degree in corporate communications from the University of Texas-Austin, was part of the Midwest trio from Oscar Mayer who drove the odd-looking vehicle to Minnesota and has a one-year contract to promote the company.

“Oscar Mayer is all about having fun and childlike innocence…and instilling those values in others every year,” said Dzakuma. “Most of the times that I can remember eating hot dogs and having fun is at stuff like family cook-outs, baseball games – things that are American traditions,” Dzakuma continued.

This isn’t the first time that Krueger has raised money for MS. Since 2003, she has raised $9,346.37. Her father, Loren Krueger, a 44-year-old salesman for Cold Spring Granite, was diagnosed with the autoimmune disease in 1998 and now gets around with the help of a motorized wheelchair praises his daughters efforts.

“I’m still surprised she won the contest but also at the drive she has. She’s always thinking of new ways to raise money,” he said.

Her mother, Teresa Krueger, a 44-old nurse at St. Cloud Hospital echoes his statement “We’re immensely proud of her,” she said.

At the end of the event, Krueger, who admits that she likes hot dogs but that isn’t really a fan of meat, was already thinking about her next fund-raiser, a used-book sale at the St. Cloud civic Center next weekend.

The K-Pop Stop (extra credit restaurant review)

Kyle Bachan

JOUR 21B

03/19/2013

 

The K-Pop Stop

 

On the intersection of Fremont Blvd. and Decoto Rd.,  a sushi place went under a new owner, and K-Pop was found.

 

K-Pop is a Korean fusion restaurant/bar. Its a small place with a clean inside. I believe it actually used to be a house before many years ago, there’s still a fireplace inside. The location is not the best, it is right next to a 7 Eleven gas station, and the parking lot can hold about seven cars. Besides having a small lot, it is very easy to drive pass the entrance, it actually doesn’t even seem like an entrance at all, its just a small driveway on the side of the building that leads to the back.

 

At first impression I did not want to go there, I’ve been to this place once before with the old owners, and it was no delight at all. This time around we found something different. We pulled around the back and the owner was outside smoking a cigarette, no complaints, shows character. He swiftly threw it away and welcomed us in. The restaurant was completely empty and we were the only customers so he let us sit where we pleased, which was nice of course, and his service was friendly.

 

We actually went there to grab few drinks, which they had a minimal selection of. We drank a few beers and decided to look through the menu. This is where is got interesting. We ordered a style of Gangnam Style, as well as Troublemaker Style. Just because of the name we decided to order it, their naming techniques definitely worked on us.

 

At first when he served the food, it seemed plain. These “styles” were basically a Korean fusion style of carne asada fries. Fries with some kind of topping. At first it looked like it was just a plate of fries with barely any toppings, but it turned out it was in the middle, and both dishes were delicious and something new. The Gangnam Style was a little more flavorful but the Troublemaker Style took the win with its adequate spiciness.

 

Although the restaurant was empty, we did find a good sense of entertainment. He gave us a binder full of updated karaoke music which he put in a playlist as soon as we were able to choose some songs. The funny thing was, we didn’t even sing most of them. We sat and listened to the beat, ate and conversated. And then it happened, the owner picked up the mic and started rapping 50 Cent’s P.I.M.P. song like he wrote it himself, it was awesome. This man had balls, and he showed them. It was very entertaining and he did it because he knew it would make us laugh and have fun.

 

Overall, although the place wasn’t exactly lively, K-Pop was very enjoyable and I can definitely find myself going back sometime soon. The prices were not burning holes in wallets, and the food was definitely different, in a delicious way.

 

Five Reality Shows That Changed Pop Culture

Five Reality Shows That Changed Pop Culture

Rather you love it or hate it, reality T.V. is here to stay. When the genre exploded onto the masses in the early 2000’s, viewers and critics alike panned it as a passing fad that would disappear as quickly as it arrived. Now, nearly fifteen years later, the impact that reality T.V. has had on popular culture is undeniable and is a force to be reckoned with in the weekly ratings. Here, we take a look at five reality shows have impacted popular culture as we know it today.

5. The Hills (2006, MTV)
Stars: Lauren “L.C.” Conrad, Heidi Montag, Audrina Partridge, and Spencer Pratt
Premise: A series chronicling the lives of a group of 20-somethings living in L.A. while learning about life, love, careers, friendship and how to ask questions without reading from a script.
The Scoop: After six seasons, the “reality” series revealed what fans suspected all along; it wasn’t actually real. The entire thing was scripted as shown in the final minutes when the overly dramatic scene was revealed to be nothing more than a Hollywood set. The joke was clearly on us.
And Then…: Many stars of “The Hills” have gone on to bigger and better things. Lauren “Don’t-Call-Me-‘L.C.’” Conrad is now a best selling author and fashion designer, while show “villains” Heidi and Spencer Pratt (the two were married during the shows run) have appeared in numerous other reality shows including the U.K.’s “Celebrity Big Brother.”

4. The Osbournes (2002, MTV)
Stars: Ozzy Osbourne, Sharon Osbourne, Jack Osbourne, Kelly Osbourne
Premise: A look into the not-so-glamorous family life of rock legend Ozzy Osbourne and all of their hilarious hijinks. F*#$ Yeah!
The Scoop: The breakout hit for MTV gave viewers the chance to be a fly on the wall to one of rock and roll’s most famous families. What was surprising was just how “normal” they were. They fought, they cursed, they made up, they laughed, they cursed, they went to the grocery store, they cursed some more. There was also that one time when Sharon threw a ham at their neighbors for being too loud.
And Then…: Oddly enough, Ozzy, the most famous Osbourne prior to filming, has been in the public eye the least out of the family since the series wrapped its four season run in 2005. Family matriarch, Sharon is one of the co-hosts on the syndicated daytime talk show “The Talk,” Kelly is a panelist E!’s “Fashion Police,” and Jack Osbourne has been in the limelight again due to his recent diagnosis with multiple sclerosis (MS).

3. The Bachelor (2002, ABC)
Stars: Chris Harrison (Host), Alex Michel (Season 1), Bob Guiney (Season 4), Jesse Palmer (Season 5), Jake Pavelka (Season 14)
The Premise: Right around the time of the reality T.V. explosion, ABC got in the game by debuting “The Bachelor.” A take on old dating game shows from decades past, the show centers around one man (the bachelor) choosing from a pool of single women all vying for his affection. At the end of each episode, The Bachelor gives a rose to the women he would like to stay on the show and the ones who do not receive a rose are eliminated and sent home.
The Scoop: The show was an instant success for ABC, and spawned two spinoff shows: “The Bachelorette,” and “Bachelor Pad.”
And Then…: Although each season ends with the bachelor choosing a woman he would like to propose to, the show has not seen much success in lasting relationships. Most couples formed from the show part ways not longer after the airing of their season.

2. American Idol (2002, FOX)
Stars: Ryan Seacrest (Host seasons 1-12), Brian Dunkleman (Judge season 1), Simon Cowell (Judge seasons 1-9), Paula Abdul (Judge seasons 1-8), Randy Jackson (Judge seasons 1-12), Kara DioGuardi (Judge seasons 8-9), Ellen DeGeneres (Judge season 9), Jennifer Lopes (Judge seasons 10-11), Steven Tyler (Judge seasons 10-11), Nicki Minaj (Judge season 12), Mariah Carey (Judge season 12), Keith Urban (Judge season 12).
Premise: 10-12 aspiring musicians sing live and are judged (sometimes rather harshly) by a panel of industry professionals. One by one, the American audience votes someone out of the competition until only one remains to be crowned the American Idol.
The Scoop: “Idol” has been a saving grace for the FOX network, which was struggling to find solid programming. For 12 years the reality competition has been a ratings juggernaut, consistently winning its timeslot in total viewers rating shares.
And Then…: While approximately 10,000 hopefuls auditioned for the flagship season, later seasons would see over 100,000 turnouts all vying to be named the American Idol. The show has launched the careers of several current stars including Grammy award winners Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood and Jennifer Hudson, who also won an Academy Award for her role in the feature film “Dreamgirls.”

1. Survivor (2000, CBS)
Stars: Jeff Probst (Host), Richard Hatch, Rob Mariano, Parvati Shallow, Rob Cesternino, Russell Hantz, Kim Spradlin, Colby Donaldson, Sandra Diaz-Twine
Premise: 20 people, 39 days, 1 survivor. 16-20 people (depending on the season) are stranded on a deserted island with limited food and supplies (usually a bag of rice and a machete) and must compete against each other (first in two tribes and then later merged as one tribe), while also battling starvation and the harsh elements. At the end of each episode, one castaway is voted off of the island until only one remains to be named the sole survivor and claim the $1 million dollar prize.
The Scoop: The show was a massive success and is credited for ushering in the reality T.V. craze. The second season “Survivor: The Australian Outback’s” final episode was watched by more than 50 million people and was the top rated television show of 2001.
And Then…: While the show is no longer the cultural phenomenon it once was, it still consistently finishes in the top 20 each week and has helped establish reality T.V. as a mainstay in the homes of families around the country. Several well-known names owe a great deal of their success to the show including Jeff Probst who has won multiple Emmy awards for his duties as host. As well as Elisabeth Hasselbeck who is a cohost on ABC’s “The View” with Barbara Walters.

Oz The Great and Powerful

Kyle Bachan

Jour 21B

Dada

3/20/2013

Oz: The Great and Powerful

 

If you like cheesy acting and dry humor, follow the yellow brick road and watch Oz: The Great and Powerful.

 

This movie directed by Sam Raimi shows Oscar Diggs’s (James Franco) journey to becoming the great and powerful Oz. He is shown as an egocentric traveling magician with a decently entertaining act. Using made up stories about his grandmother, Oz tries to reach out to the hearts of the young women who he finds at his shows. Upon being confronted about his dishonorable actions, Oz runs out onto a hot air balloon and is swept into a tornado and thrown into the land of Oz.

 

This movie sports visually stunning computer generated imagery, some of which you might think was inspired from the newer Willy Wonka movie, as well as the newer Alice in Wonderland. The team in charge of animation does a remarkable job incorporating 3D imagery into each of the scenes creating the pop and wow factor for the audience. Sometimes you might even feel like ducking down to make sure the object doesn’t hit you too! Although the movie did cost extra in 3D, $3.50 more to be exact, it was well worth it.

 

If you are a fan of dry humor, this is a movie for you. Oz: The Great and Powerful is packed full of corny comedy and will have you and your company giggling throughout the enitre movie. China girl and her teenage spunk, and Finley with his Finley-ness bring the adorable cuteness which young ones will enjoy.

 

Although we have seen the cast in other movies, it seems as if the director purposely wanted a slight corniness to the film. We have seen these actors/actresses in movies with much more serious acting, but in this film it seems less fluid and more like a live screen play. Although it does seem this way, this adds to the movie’s style and in it’s own way will keep you entertained.

 

Overall, Oz: The Great and Powerful is a blast to watch with its stunning 3D effects, and comedic dialogue. You will find yourself liking each of the characters, as well as the plots that unfold ahead of them in this great go see movie.

Class Evaluation

Kyle Bachan

JOUR21B

03/19/2013

Journalism 21B

 

I enjoyed this class this quarter, although I got off to a very slow start. I was missing the book for the first couple weeks, but I was able to catch up a little. I enjoyed writing the AP words on the board, especially after I was able to change my letter to something that had more interesting subjects.

 

The in-class assignments were doable as well, and I can see why you assigned them. If we were to take journalism up as our profession, exercises like these would definitely help organize and make your articles more exciting and readable. Sometime I felt like we should’ve started earlier, or had a little more time to complete the assignments, sometimes I felt that because of lack of time, decisions could be rushed and whole thought processes didn’t have enough time to lay out.  I liked the assignment where we drew out our own page, as well as putting the story in order, it was a fun mind puzzle.

 

Some of the homework assignments were challenging, I kind of felt blind going in. I wasn’t really sure what you were looking for, I wish there was some more guidance. Maybe during class give more examples of types of stories, show us simple feature stories so that we feel like we can write on that level and have a better idea of how stories should turn out. If Harry Potter was a feature story, and you gave that to us as an example it would confuse the hell out of us, but if you show us Dr.Seuss as a feature story and used that as an example, it would be a lot more encouraging and basic so that we could grasp concepts and feel more active and less confused when writing stories of our own.

 

The quizzes are okay, I understand you can’t please everyone, but sometimes a little wordplay might influence a student to choose a certain answer depending on their chain of thought. They aren’t wrong but their answer isn’t right, but you’re quizzes are at a good level, I like them.

 

In class, it really is hard to see the board. Especially with the back row of lights on and the light coming from the window. It really hurts the contrast. During some of the slideshows I seriously couldn’t keep up with the writing, and I consider myself a fast writer. I understand you have to multitask, but it really is hard to struggle to finish up writing what you have on the board and listen at the same time. Reading and listening kind of cancel each other out when you do it at the same time. When we were doing abbreviations, I was so concentrated on writing the notes down as fast as I could before you went to the next page that I honestly wasn’t able to concentrate on what you were telling us as a class.

 

I felt kind of lost throughout the quarter, especially in the beginning. I like you as a person, and your teaching style is cool as well, I just felt like a little more clarity and guidance could’ve helped, or maybe I just really wasn’t understanding some things. I enjoy coming to your class, and I’m sorry that I’m not always exactly on time, but I try my best. Sometimes I leave at 8:10am, but get there even later than I would when I leave at 8:40am, it really sucks. A lot happens in 45 miles of highway.  But overall, I really like your class, and I’m grateful for all the things you taught us. Thank you Ms. Dada.

 

-Kyle

Originality is Gone

“Oz: The Great and Powerful,” is a great visual piece of art and mildly entertaining. The premise of the movie is a young man hoping to make it big as a magician, but is unexpectedly carried away by a tornado in a hot air balloon. This tornado transports him to a new world filled with eye candy like beautiful colors and creatures. The overall world of Oz is breath taking, in the sense that it has life force behind it.

Although, the movie makes use of today’s technology, it is nothing original and nor does it contain anything we have not seen in movies before. A few references here and there are noticed throughout the film. It may be lacking in originality, but it does serve the purpose by trying to fill in gaps of the Oz Story.

Seeing the Emerald city on a big screen was wonderful and the rolling hills just added to the beautiful scene. James Franco, a very talented actor, plays a wonderful part as the magician who gets swept away in to the enchanted world of Oz. Franco’s performance on screen is complimented by Mila Kunis, another movie star that had a role in the film as one of the three witches. Actress Michelle Williams and Rachel Weisz both played as witches contributed nicely to the story.

Unfortunately, there was really no character progression throughout the movie. The need to show a character’s weakness and see them change throughout trials and tribulations is what helps build a character for the audience to admire. Moreover, this movie is not really meant to be the starting point to the Oz series, and that would explain the lack of character development or back story.

All in all, the movie will be great as part of a collection, but to consider it a prequel of any sort is not doing it justice. It is a great stepping stone towards a better, more story driven film and character building that will help resonate better with the older generation that still enjoy the classic “Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz”.

Journalims 21B

Journalism, what is it and how do it affect the way we view the world? Journalism is the combined effort of many individuals bringing news to the people who want to know what’s going on around them. It is choosing news worthy subjects/ topics and being able to stay objective.

Journalism 21B is a great course for any student or aspiring journalist. You learn about the many types of feature writing like columns, opinions, reviews, profiles and many more. The class size is fairly small, but this helps keep the student and teacher interaction steady and engaging.

One aspect of student interaction with each other and the teacher is white board writing. More than a few times students were required to write down a word and its definition. Not only was it writing definitions but also becoming familiar with the AP style handbook and learning of the many different ways to attribute correctly, and how to use particular numbers, address, abbreviations, and titles.

There is one thing that had proven to be a thorn in the side of many students. It was the class syllabus. What was confusing about the syllabus were its due dates for assignments. Assignments weren’t due until the following week, but having to look back and forth between week one and two in order to figure out what was due became a bit confusing.

The class in its entirety is something that every future journalist needs to take and regardless of who the teacher is, pay attention and listen. All the advice given from your peers and teacher will better serve you in the long run. The reading was minimal and what made up for the lack of reading was all the writing.

Overall the class was great and if there was one thing that can be improved. It would be the class syllabus. The need to understand what assignments are due is crucial to learning and retaining any kind of new information you have picked up.

Class Review

I feel that this class opened my eyes as to what it really takes to be a professional journalist. Though I’m a Communications major, at the end of the day, being a journalist isn’t my primary aspiration, but I’ve always considered myself a pretty good writer. Turns out as far as features go, I had a lot to learn. From AP Style to formatting, the things I learned and the experience I had will definitely help me in one way or another as I go about reaching my goals, and might even serve as a way for me to get my foot in the door somewhere as perhaps a blogger or a social media captain.

This was not an easy class. Though English was my best subject by far throughout grade school, this class put all I knew to the test and then some. Learning the proper AP forms for words was very valuable and as a result, I plan to hold onto my AP stylebook and make it a permanent addition to my bookshelf at home. Another challenge was breaking my usual writing style to conform to the styles of the different articles that we were assigned. It helped me to branch out and think in ways I usually don’t.

Overall, I would recommend this class to others. Whether an aspiring journalist or not, the overall experience was worth the time and effort.

Film Review

For His Next Trick,‘Oz the Great and Powerful’ will perform chronological illusions… of the confusing sort

 

Off to see the Wizard? Might want to think twice.  Technically, Sam Raimi’s Oz the Great and Powerful takes place ahead of Wizard of Oz, but before the excitement sets in, any familiarity one could expect to possibly see is non-existent. There are no tin-men. There are no lions. No worries though, there’s an overly modernized “hip” wizard and an annoying monkey sidekick. Interested yet?

The story revolves around Oz (James Franco) and his journey to becoming the famed wizard. Though the story takes place hundreds of years ago, Oz’ demeanor is very current-day, to an absurd degree. Modern sarcasm and wit detract from the historical setting set before the viewer, resulting in an awkward mix of 1600s and mid-2000s. Along the journey, Oz makes a few new acquaintances, but none more grating than Finley (Zach Braff). Cursed with dialogue that only Jar -Jar Binks could appreciate, the cringe-worthy little monkey has a bad habit of talking way too much, with a handful of unfunny puns to boot. The only characters who were bearable enough to be called “good” and chronologically accurate were the witches; Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams). Their portrayals of good and evil were top notch and at some points, saved the film from downward spirals.

Characters aside, the real issue is the plot structure. Though it comes together shortly after the middle, the first 45 minutes of the film are either too loose or too forced, with very little explanation or reasoning for what’s going on. The viewer is taken on a ride where they are not to question where they are going or how they are going to get there. Too many events seem to “just happen” in a very unclear manner, with characters that materialize, just to disappear for very long periods of time, only to reappear again. It all adds up to a very randomized sequence of seemingly accidental adventures.

If one were to disconnect Oz the Great and Powerful from Wizard of Oz completely, the tale of a sarcastic magician going on a fantastic voyage wouldn’t be so bad. However, it was made with the intent of being tied in with the original story, a story that it falls well short of representing properly.

Info:

OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

2 stars/5

MPAA Rating: PG

Runtime: 211 minutes

Cast: James Franco, Michelle Williams, Rachel Weisz, Zach Braff, Bill Cobbs, Tony Cox, Joey King

Director: Sam Raimi

Writers: Michael Kapner, David Lindsay-Abaire

Playing at: AMC Mercado, AMC Cupertino

A Writing Investment

Journal 21b is a class that teaches students the basics of feature writing. It is a class worth taking even if journalism is not your major.

However, taking a news writing class before taking a feature writing class is not advised. Many would think that news writing would be better to learn first because it helps you gain better journalistic skills but that is debatable.

The main reason being is that when you take a news writing class, the main thing is to be as factual as possible. The main point is to put all important things first where as feature writing has both facts and creativity to make the story interesting or as journalist would say a fluff piece which means exaggerated.

De Anza new coming Journalism teacher Farideh Dada taught this specific class. Her ideals on how to teach a feature class was very frightening at first, but as time went on the flow of things became easier to understand.

The main problem about the class was when assignments were due. The dates came off as confusing, the dates should have been more informative that way students would not become confused while looking at the assignment schedule.

Ap style is something that many of journalism writers need to know and the Ap stylebook is practically the bible for said writers. It would have been more helpful for the students if they were given a cheat sheet that would help them know the most common used things in Ap that way there would have been less errors when stories were written.

The things that really helped in this class were the peer critiques. It let students know what they needed to work on as well as get advice from fellow students on how to make the story more enjoyable as well as how to fix errors that may have been missed.

As for grading, Dada made sure that students received the grade that they deserved as well as have them great feed back as to what they need to work on as well.

All in all, this feature writing class was very informative and worth taking with Dada. You just have to get use to her teaching methods if you have taken a journalism class before. It would also be best to take this class with a friend who has taken a journalism class or two just incase you need some outside help.

Over the Technicolor Rainbow

‘Oz the Great and Powerful’ pays tribute to, the late Victor Fleming’s 1930s classic, ‘The Wizard of Oz’. This prequel will undoubtedly charm and mesmerize audience young and old just like its predecessor had.

The legendary wizard Oz who is played by James Franco, is a con-man/magician extraordinaire in a traveling circus that is trying to make a name for himself, by being greater than he seems. Just like the original, the main character is swept up from a black and white twister and tossed out into a world of Technicolor.

During his stay, Oz meets three beautiful powerful witches; the young and naive Theodora (Mila Kunis), her older and conniving sister Evanora (Rachel Weizs), and the noble kind hearted Glinda the Good (Michelle Williams). These three witches change Oz’s life as they guide him on his journey of becoming the wizard that we all know and love.

The original Spider-Man trilogy director Sam Raimi definitely makes all the stops in this eye-popping modern day version of the Land of Oz. Each scene dazzled the screen with its stunning computer-generated imagery graphics, which made Oz a place of true wonder and child like imagination that would have made Dorothy’s ruby red slippers clap with glee and excitement.

The score, composed by Danny Elfman who has provided his talent to films such as; Batman Returns, Spider-Man, Alice in Wonderland, and Frankenweenie, brought on drew out such enchanting emotions when, hope was found or problems arose for Oz and his friends.

However, the character that really put the magic in this film was the bellhop wise-cracking monkey Finley played by Zach Braff, who’s character helps Oz on his quest to defeat the Wicked Witch of the West who is out to destroy the land of Oz with her flying monkey goons. This movie definitely has the whimsical charm to score big in the box office.

* Oz the Great and Powerful

* Starring: James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz, Michelle Williams, Zach Braff, Joey King

* Directed By: Sam Raimi

* PG, 2 HR., 10 MIN

* C+

Extra credit resturant review

Jason Aguirre

Journalism 21B

Extra credit: restaurant review

The Sushi Factory is nestled in the Meridian Park Plaza in South San Jose, amongst a family grocery store and smoke shop. From the outside it is remarkable only for sporting a small bell tower above the uniform brick complex, and for the oriental lanterns in the window.

On entering, one is struck by the ambiance of the simple but clean layout. There are intimate booths, generously spaced tables, and a comparatively long bar where customers can watch the chefs make fresh sushi. There is a huge round table in one corner for large groups. The oriental theme certainly contributes to the atmosphere but is not overdone and even seems an afterthought in spots.

Sushi Factory’s main claim to fame is its all-you-can-eat deal for $24.95, but the catch is that customers can only order three rolls each at a time and have to finish everything or be charged extra. Groups may share to get a larger variety but only if everyone orders the all-you-can-eat.

The menu is a clever twist on the norm, being laminated so customers can mark what they want on the page. While some Yelp reviewers brand the Sushi Factory a fake with high prices and Americanized parodies of Japanese cuisine, it actually has a comparatively expansive menu for a Bay Area sushi restaurant.

If it is overly priced, the portions are at least generous. The all-you-can-eat deal is almost not worth it. The portions being what they are, eating just the three or four rolls required to break even is enough to fill all but the most devoted eater. Sadly no to-go bags are allowed for this deal.

If it is unauthentic, the menu lends it character through the many colloquially titled rolls: the 49er roll, the San Francisco roll, the Sharks roll. Most come in 6-8 pieces and cost between $6 and $12. First timers will want to try the Super California roll, also known as the Crazy roll.

A California roll is primarily crab and avocado wrapped in steamed rice and seaweed paper. There are little orange fish eggs sprinkled on top called Tobiko which adds a smoky-salty taste. Normally served cold, the Crazy roll throws tradition for a loop by deep-frying the whole thing and adding a tangy house sauce to the top. Sushi fanatics may argue that deep-fried sushi is as authentic as a California accent, but try a few pieces and you won’t care.

The one hitch is the service. Although not authentically Japanese owned, the management seems bent on hiring immigrant workers who can’t read their own menu. Customers are often rushed through ordering, with any questions about the menu being grunted away or outright ignored.

Although the chefs are a credit to their position for both the quality of food and the show they put on making it, the servers are overwhelmingly rude and abrupt. On a typical visit don’t expect to see the server between ordering and the food arriving, or after until the check comes. Thankfully, the food does come fairly quickly, usually within 10 to 20 minutes depending on the size of the order.

Check the bill before adding a tip, as this place tends to include the gratuity in the total. On several occasions, servers have been known to question the amount given, literally following customers to the door asking, “Is this all?” For groups of more than two or three people, expect an apparently mandatory 18 percent gratuity charge.

The Bay Area is not lacking for sushi bars, and each one will make its faults known to the more than casual connoisseur. The Sushi Factory is a local favorite where the quality of the food arguably rolls the competition, but with the price hikes and declining service it is perhaps best saved for a rainy day.

Fast Fact Sheet

Sushi Factory

Address: 4632 Meridian Ave
San Jose, CA 95124

Phone number: (408) 723-2598

http://www.sushifactorysj.com

Hours: Mon-Thu 11:30 am – 9:30 pm

Fri 11:30 am – 10 pm

Sat 12 pm – 10 pm

Sun 12 pm – 9:30 pm

Price Range: $6-$30

Takes Reservations: Yes

Take-out: Yes

Parking: Private Lot

Attire: Casual

Outdoor Seating: No

Wi-Fi: No

Good For: Lunch, Dinner

Alcohol: Beer & Wine Only

Film review “Argo”

Argo, is a dark comedy that pushes people to the end of their seats with suspense while explaining a time in history when the politics and relationship between Iran and the U.S grew tense.

Ben Affleck is both the director and leading man of the film, and delivers a believable performance as CIA operative Tony Mendez.
Mendez, along with five other American officials find themselves caught in the middle of the Iranian Revolution on November 4, 1979.

The tempers of the Iranians grow high until they can no longer contain them, and the Iranians raid the U.S embassy in Tehran taking a total of 52 Americans hostage.
Mendez and five other officials amazingly manage to escape from all the madness, and find safety in the house of a Canadian ambassador.

There Mendez and his comrades plot up a plan to escape out of the country that sounds so crazy, it might just work.

The bright lights of Hollywood is the glimmer of hope that the Americans hold on to, and the group settles on playing out the guise of being a Canadian film crew looking for places to shoot scenes in Iran for the new, Hollywood blockbuster sci-fi “Argo”
If everything goes according to the plan, after tricking the film industry and media into believing Argo is a new film, Mendez would get his hands on six Canadian passports, go back to Iran and fly his team out to Switzerland.

In order to make this lie seem as genuine as possible, Mendez flies out to Hollywood and begins to hire professionals for the fake movie, like real producer Lester Siegel, played by Alan Arkin and makeup artist John Chambers played by John Goodman.
Mendez even begins to publicize the film, placing ads in the paper and gaining media attention in a desperate attempt to cover up to the public that the film is a hoax.

The Hollywood involvement adds much needed comic relief to Argo. Without it audiences would be facing the reality that the Iran and U.S relationship to this day is taut and can quickly turn volatile.
Argo is a film that shows viewers why the Iranians mistrust the U.S but uses comedy to lighten up the film.

Overall, Argo contains great acting, a great plot, and a great ending. It has its’ moments where suspense runs high, but in the end is a comedy that brings a much needed laugh to a taught situation. Bravisimo!

6.11 movie review

Jason Aguirre

Journalism 21B 6.11

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

Sir Peter Jackson returns audiences to Tolkien’s fantasy realm of Middle-Earth for a heart-warming prequel to the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Some 60 years before the “Fellowship of the Ring” embarks on its fateful journey to defeat the Dark Lord Sauron, Bilbo Baggins is an unassuming hobbit living in the shire. Played by Martin Freeman, Baggins wants no part of any adventure, such being “nasty disturbing uncomfortable things that make you late for dinner!”

After a visit by the Grey Wizard Gandalf, played by Sir Ian McKellen, Baggins is drawn into the company of 13 eccentric dwarfs on a quest to reclaim their “kingdom under the mountain.” Trolls, elves and all manner of mystical creatures both beautiful and deadly abound in a special effects masterpiece.

More than anything, “An Unexpected Journey” is a reintroduction to earlier versions of many characters already familiar from “The Lord of the Rings.” The first of a three-part adaptation of Tolkien’s original 1937 novel, it is full of fateful meetings and sometimes not so subtle references to events yet to come.

It is gratifying to see McKellen reprise his role as a younger, less world-weary Gandalf with much to prove. The character and actor arguably carry a comparatively weaker selection of characters played by mostly unknown talents. Fans who felt Gandalf’s action scenes were underwhelming in the LOTR trilogy though will rejoice at the feats of battle and magic wrapped around a portentous story.

Bilbo is of course a central character to that story, and all that come later. Freeman dominates the camera, despite special effects magic which makes him appear shorter, and does more to deliver the beloved persona of the novel than any other actor could. Hand-picked by Jackson, the entire shoot was rearranged to accommodate the actor’s schedule.

Rounding out his domination of English literature-turned-films alongside “Sherlock” and “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy,” Freeman admits in an interview with Crave Online that he was not a Tolkien fan growing up, but came to love the series through Jackson’s films. His fellow “Sherlock” costar Benedict Cumberbatch on the other hand is living his childhood dream by playing both the Necromancer and the dragon Smaug. Though neither makes more than a cameo appearance in this first film, the trilogy’s two main villains are ominously present throughout.

And it is only the first film. If “An Unexpected Journey” can be said to have a fault, it is that despite being three hours long, it ends too soon. Being intentionally part of a trilogy, fans will be left hanging with an “Empire Strikes Back” or “New Moon” ending, depending on the generation.

While unquestionably lighter in tone than the LOTR series, the “Hobbit” series is not overly childish. If anything, it is a reminder that if the violence and emotional drama of kings and demons kept LOTR audiences entertained as adults, it was the magic, hope and a hobbit’s silly quest which lured readers into Middle Earth as children.

Extra credit restaurant review

The vineyards of Tuscany and moonlit boat rides on the Venice canal floats to one’s mind when they taste the authenticity of the Neapolitan styled pizza from Pizza Bocca Lupo.

Pizza Bocca Lupo, a term that means good luck in Italian and translates to “The mouth of the wolf”, is a family owned pizza restaurant in downtown San Jose.
Pizza Bocca Lupo is a food-court styled restaurant. The customer orders his/her food at the cash register, is given a buzzer, and then picks up their fresh out-of-the-oven pizza at the end of the counter when their buzzer goes off.

A wood-fired oven imported straight from Naples, Italy sits in the right corner of the restaurant. The oven is large, dome shape, covered with tiny copper tiles that glisten in the light.
A glowing flame dances in the middle of the oven, fired by coal and almond wood. This flame reaches up to 900 degrees and cooks every pizza to a crisp perfection.

Pizza Bocca Lupo has existed for a year and a half, and has collected many types of different pizzas on their menu. Yet the classic menu lists only six pizzas: Joe’s special, Margherita, Bradley’s special, Pearzola, Diavola and the Bianca.

According to reviews on yelp, the two best sellers are the Diavola and the Bianca.

After placing an order for these two pizzas, the wait time was surprisingly quick. A total of ten minutes was all that it took for the pizzas to be made and cooked.

The Diavola, which translates to “devil” in Italian, is a pizza with tomato sauce, parmesan, dry mozzarella, salami, roasted red peppers, garlic and a pinch of red chili flakes.

The combination of the roasted red peppers, salami garlic and chili flakes tasted incredible.
The refreshing sweetness of the roasted reds balanced out and prevented a sodium overload from the garlic and salami. A light sprinkle of chili flakes was detected on the pizza, which added a tasty kick to the taste buds without being to spicy and overpowering the flavor of the pizza.

The size of the pizza is around 12” and thin crust. The crust was soft but not too chewy, and cooked to a light golden brown.
The pizzas are large enough to share, but if someone was ravenous they could easily polish off a whole pizza.

Overall the Diavola was a delightful spicy, savory and sweet blend, and made the stomach want more.

The Bianca, which means white in Italian, is a pizza that is pleasing to the eye.

Parmesan and wet mozzarella is the base of the pizza. Olive oil substitutes for tomato sauce.
Fresh arugula lightly tossed in balsamic arugula is layered on top of the pie as soon as it comes out of the oven. Then prosciutto crudo is sliced as thin as paper and is placed on top of the arugula.

The pie resembles a salad on a pizza. The peppery bite of the arugula paired with the saltiness of the prosciutto crudo and the sweetness of the balsamic-vinaigrette dressing is sensational.

The absence of the sauce is a good call, for sauce would have made the pie too heavy and take away the pizza’s appeal of being light and refreshing.

Having only mozzarella, parmesan and olive oil as the base of the pie is genius, allowing the full-bodied flavors of the arugula, prosciutto crudo and balsamic vinaigrette to stand out, blend and work their magic.

The Bianca is a pie that will not disappoint.

Besides pizzas, Pizza Bocca Lupo also offers side salads and garlic bread to snack on.

The price of all pies is $14.11, excluding the margherita, which is only $9.72. At first the pies might appear to pricy, but after taking the first bite all hesitation to dish out a few bucks will disappear.

Pizza Bocca Lupo is a hidden gem in San Jose, and is a restaurant that should not be overlooked. Under the price of $20, Pizza Bocca Lupo can trick a person to thinking that they’re eating from a humble pizzeria in Italy with they fresh, authentic taste that these thin crust pies bring to one’s mouth.

Extra credit column

Butt-cheek skimming shorts, with the word “KITTY” printed across the back and tank tops that don’t follow the famous saying, “Less is more”.

These are just a few fashion choices that have been displayed around De Anza College, and while some members of the male specimen are not complaining, other faculty, staff, and students are not enjoying the view and would prefer to see less of the human anatomy.

Some people may feel they are seeing more of a stranger’s body than they want to or should, so would the enforcement of a dress code at De Anza be the cure?

Skirts, shorts, and dresses that reach down to the finger tips, and shirts with sleeves that are required to be thicker than two inches would definitely change the amount of skin seen on campus.

And if a dress code were to be enforced, men should not be excluded. Many women would love to go to a P.E class without seeing the outline of a fellow student’s package in skin-tight spandex.

Although a dress code seems like the perfect answer to not having your eyes drawn to body parts that you don’t want to see, De Anza is a college, and the students on campus are adults and should have the freedom to wear what they want whenever they want.

Yes it can be distracting when the person giving a presentation is wearing a see-through shirt that displays a cheetah-print bra, paired with leggings that form a camel toe.

Yet the privilege to wear whatever apparel one wants gives people the chance to stand out from the crowd and show the world how they want to be viewed as an individual

The article, “Freedom of dress is a part of our freedom of expression” from catholicherald.co.uk says people the freedom of dress allows people to reflect their uniqueness to the world.

The freedom of dress also goes hand in hand with the freedom of expression, and this right is a right that everyone is entitled too.
According to aclu.org, the freedom of expression is not just restricted to pure speech but also symbolic speech, “nonverbal expression whose purpose is to communicate ideas.”

So whether or not someone’s clothing makes another feel uncomfortable, they are making an unspoken statement with their clothes.

It may hold a special meaning to the wearer, and that person deserves to voice that meaning.

Maybe the girl who wears a crop top that shows off her midriff feels empowered and confident whenever she bares her skin.

Maybe when a man sags his pants he is making the statement that he does not care about the public opinion and is proud of his undergarments, so proud that he wants to show them off to the world.

No matter what message they are trying to send, every person has the right to wear whatever clothes they like, and no one should question their decision to do so, or take away that choice.

Class review

De Anza College’s Journalism 21B Features class is a class that has the potential of transforming students into skilled feature writers, yet is lacking in organization.

Farideh Dada, who is also an instructor at the San Jose City College journalism department and was a former journalist herself, taught the course.

The requirements to pass the class are to write an article a week that focuses on different styles of feature writing, a quiz each week, posting an article on the weekly blog, and class attendance and participation.

All of the articles that were in the course gave students the chance to practice writing different types of feature pieces, such as profiles, columns, and reviews. This part of the course was advantageous, because it forced students to experience with these different forms of writing and equip them to know how to properly write future feature articles.

The downside to the class was how the in-class work was organized and the syllabus, which laid down the schedule of the quarter.

The class schedule in the syllabus was rather vague because it never said what assignments and quizzes were due on a particular day. Students prefer to know what will be covered in class each day and what is due on each day so they can come prepared.

As for the in-class work, it felt like too many activities were jammed into one day and rushed, not allowing the student to fully soak up and process the main point of the activity.

If more time were spent on an activity, the student would become more familiar and comfortable with the lesson that each activity taught, instead of feeling rushed and not wanting to participate.

One example of a rushed class activity is the learning and memorizing of AP words.

Each student in the class was given a letter that they were supposed to pick two words from each class, memorize it, write it on the board and then explain the rules to the rest of the class.
The class would then write down the words on the board and try to remember the rules of the word.
While the point of this exercise is understandable, because knowledge of AP style is essential for journalism, the picking of random words from random letters felt extremely unorganized.

The exercise would have felt more structured if the instructor had given the students a list of the letters that would be covered during the quarter, and each student was assigned the word they were supposed to remember and present at the beginning of the course. Therefore the students would know what letters were required to be covered ahead of time and would feel the need to prepare instead of choosing random words from random letters.

Jour.21 B contains class assignments that can strengthen a student’s skills in features writing. With the addition of some organization to the in-class work and the syllabus, this class would receive an A.

Event story

Around 30 faces filled room L-26 at De Anza College, all with the same purpose, to attend the Dream Act 101 Workshop and hear information about a law that holds promises of bringing positive opportunities to undocumented students.

This workshop, sponsored by De Anza’s EOPS, financial aid, and the undocumented student clubs HEFAS and IMASS, introduced and explained the California Dream Act.

The California Dream Act is a law that assists in lightening the heavy burden of finances to undocumented students in California.

“I’ll be able to afford college,” said 23-year-old Jose Armenta, a sociology major who is an undocumented student at De Anza.

Maily Ramos, another undocumented student, 19, and an anthropology major was ecstatic when she learned about the financial relief the Dream Act brought, “I thought it [California Dream Act] was amazing, it was a chance for us, us me myself as an undocumented student to actually get the opportunity to go to college without thinking about how I’m going to pay for it,”

Ramos has to work two jobs, at a pearl tea restaurant and at a Laundromat too afford community college.

The California Dream act was made into law in 2011, and is the first law to allow undocumented students in California to apply for and receive financial aid if certain requirements are met.

Undocumented students can apply for and receive non-state funded scholarships for public colleges and universities, institutional grants, community college fee waivers, the Cal grant, and Chaffee grant.

At the Dream Act 101 workshop, representatives from De Anza’s financial aid center and EOPS program appeared, and told students the benefits these programs could bring to them if they applied for the California Dream act.

Once an undocumented student’s application is accepted, they can apply for financial assistance like the BOG, Board of Government fee waiver, all of the scholarships and grants mentioned above, and EOPS, a state funded program that gives low income or academically disadvantaged students resources like book vouchers and priority registration.

Students at the workshop walked away with hopes of receiving financial support from the Dream Act on their journey of pursuing a higher education.

Angelica Esquivel, 21, a public health major and an undocumented student was excited that undocumented students at De Anza were now aware of these opportunities, and could use them to finally achieve their goals in life.

“It’s things that are now available to use that we’ve been fighting for this whole time, and for it to now be accessible to us, it’s amazing.” Esquivel said

Yet other students walked away with the feeling of liberation, and that they finally had the chance to freely live out the life they envisioned.

“I’m no longer paranoid. I have this boost of confidence, I can do more without fear and continue doing my community work without the fear of being deported.” Armenta said.

“I’m glad that I have this chance to actually succeed in life,” said Ramos, “especially with what I want to do, I’m really happy.”

Oscar Mayer story

Oscar Mayer “Win the Ride of Your Life” contest winner sixth grader Kelsey Krueger uses her contest prize to raise money for the Multiple Sclerosis Society.

11-year-old Krueger was one of 20 winners out of 75,000 children nationwide who competed by writing and sending in a 100 word-essay to Oscar Mayer, a Kraft Foods brand name who sponsored the contest.

When asked how she felt about the essay she submitted to the contest Krueger replied, “I thought it was a good essay, but I didn’t really expect it to win.” To her surprise the contest judges felt that her essay stood above the rest and was deserving of the grand prize.

Two awards were presented to contestant winners.

The first prize was a visit from an Oscar Mayer Wienermobile.

The Wienermobile is a 27-foot-long vehicle in the shape of a hot dog. It has a Chevrolet chassis, seats up to six people, and has a “bun roof”. The carpeting is splattered with condiment designs, and the license plate on the front of the car has the word YUMMY printed on it.

In addition to a ride in the Wienermobile, Krueger was also awarded with a $5,000 donation to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Krueger has been a long time donator toward the Multiple Sclerosis society. She has raised $9, 346.37 since 2003, and plans to continue donating.

Besides the $5,000 prize donation, Krueger came up with a way to use her ride in the Wienermobile to raise more money for the Multi Sclerosis society. “I thought it would be a great idea to use the Wienermobile to sell hot dogs for the MS Society,” said Krueger.

Krueger was right. The Wienermobile attracted an ample amount of attention.

During her ride, people on the street stared at her cruising around town in the massive frank. People even flocked from different cities to sneak a peak at the hot dog on wheels.

Among the crowd of spectators stood Gordon Ross and his wife, Melissa, who brought their two sons from Rice just to see the Wienermobile, “They like cars. And all I’ve ever seen of the Wienermobile was on TV commercials,” said Gordon Ross, a 42-year-old Electrolux employee.

Their 9-year-old son, Tyler Toss, wore an ear-t-ear grin while standing beside the Wienermobile. Although both father and son thought the quirky vehicle was funny and awesome, Ross said he would not want a Wienermobile of his own.

In addition to selling hot dogs, Krueger also sold root beer floats at the price of $1 each at Cash Wise. She also received donations for face painting, Wienerwhistles and bracelets.

In total, Krueger raised $1,923.37. All proceeds were donated to the MS society.

Loren Krueger, 44 and a salesman for Cold Spring Granite, admits still feeling shocked about not only his daughter’s award-winning essay, but also the ambition she holds, “I’m still surprised she won the contest but also at the drive she has. She’s always thinking of new ways to raise money,”

Kelsey’s mother Teresa Krueger, a 44-year-old nurse at St. Cloud Hospital gushed about how pleased her and her husband were with Kelsey, “We’re immensely proud of her”

At the end of the event Krueger was already thinking about her next fund-raiser, a used book sale at the St. Cloud Civic Center next weekend.

When asked if there would be any hotdogs sold at the book sale, chances of grilling franks on the grill looked bleak, “I like hot dogs, but I’m not a big fan of meat, even though I will still eat it. I’m more of a fruit-and-vegetable person.” Krueger said.

Opinion’s piece

Instead of choosing the route of peace, the Santa Clara County Police chose violence and cruelly killed a mountain lion that strayed into a residential area near Stevens Creek County Park on Saturday.

Rather than using tranquilizer darts to peacefully take the lion down and return it into the wild, the police opted to take the “easy way out,” according to one resident, and chose to ruthlessly shoot the creature instead of taking the time to figure out a plan where the animal could have left unharmed.

With the argument that the use of a tranquilizer could have made the beast grow aggressive and pose a threat to residents on the scene, what other plans could have been used?

The police could have used the emergency dial-up alert system to warn residents to stay with their children indoors, before tranquilizing the lion.

Yes, according to California Fish & Game, a tranquilizer could have made the lion aggressive, and would take 25 minutes or longer to take effect.

But if no residents were nearby, the police could have thought out a tactical plan to capture the lion and release it into the wild.

According to sccgov.org, mountain lions are, “quite, solitary and elusive, and typically avoid people.” The site says that if a mountain lion advances towards someone and threatens people, it should be killed, “immediately”

Yet this lion was simply lounging in a tree threatening no individual. Therefore the decision to shoot the harmless lion was uncalled for.

One instruction posted on scccgov.org that describes how to scare off a mountain lion, says that a person should make loud noises, try to appear bigger, and throw objects at the lion.

Surely if all the police combined their efforts and attempted this maneuver, they would have been able to successfully scare the lion into an animal safe car and return it into the mountains.

Perhaps if the Santa Clara County police squad offered courses that taught alternative methods to dealing with mountain lions without having to kill them, more lions in the future would be spared, and fewer deaths could be prevented.

Extra Credit: Classmate profile

Living with Immigrant Traditional Parents

A lone student walks up to the front of the class to receive her punishment. She missed five questions on her test, thus earning her five lashes across the palm of her hand with a ruler. The teacher doesn’t reserve any strength because this is for her own good.

This was the norm of the school system of India, the place where Rajvir Kaur, 21, was born. Though Kaur was able to escape from physical abuse of the school systems in India, this did not mean she could escape from the Indian culture.

“All I remember is getting hit, I don’t remember why, but it was traumatic since I still remember her face,” she said.

Kaur’s family is very traditional. Her father was especially strict about her behavior as a female growing up.

Kaur recently cut her hair but accidentally cut it too short. She said she will be keeping it up in a bun for awhile because “he’s very traditional, he definitely wouldn’t be happy.”

In India, it’s legal for parents to beat their children. Sometimes it got out of hand, Kaur said.

“My brother protected me,” she said.

Kaur’s brother had times when he strayed from the right path because of peer pressure. It was very hard on Kaur to see it happening, but he picked himself up and started again.

“My older brother, Rajvinder, wow, stand behind that man until the day I die,” she said.

Kaur enjoyed volley ball and track very much as a child but sports were a taboo for girls in the Indian culture.

“My father wouldn’t let me because I was a girl,” she said.

It is one of Kaur’s greatest regrets to this day, “it’s too late for me and I have a shoulder injury from pulling a muscle while playing in secret.”

Kaur volunteers in VITAS Hospice Center, but this needs to be kept a secret from her father. “My mom supports me, but my dad doesn’t because I’m a girl,” she said.

“My escape is music. I just plug in,” Kaur said.

Children from immigrant families face extra hurdles trying to find middle ground between American and their home culture. Being fluent in a different language than one’s parents doesn’t help the situation either.

It takes awhile to come out of the box. It took her 12 years to comfortably talk about her struggles as a child.

“Although sometimes I still can’t talk about it,” she said. “I just don’t want it to define me.”

Kaur is majoring in social work with a minor in journalism. “I just volunteer secretly and tell my dad I’m attending class. I’m sure everything will work out in the end.”

Movie review

Sally Lee
Jour. 21b

Headline: Argo more of a cartoon flick than movie,  fails to impress.

3.5 stars out of 5

The movie “Argo,” directed by Ben Affleck, is a good popcorn movie but some minor tweaks in actual historical occurrences makes some of the characters look unbelievable and less human.

Ben Affleck plays Tony Mendez, an exfiltration expert hired by the CIA to rescue six kidnapped American hostage in Iran. Argo is a thriller, drama and history flick.

Though a historical movie, much of the human aspect of major characters such as Mendez is pulled out. Though in real life many people from different government worked together to make this operation a success, but the movie twists it in a way to portray Mendez as the sole mastermind of this whole project.

There is never a scene of Mendez struggling and showing fear of diving into one of the most dangerous countries in this world making this movie plot seem made up.

The film portrays war in an easy to digest sequence of pictures; the situation is dumbed out without much discussion of politics. If you’re not a historical fanatic, you won’t need to worry because it leans more toward the thriller genre.

The film often times turned to portray many of the characters stereotypically such as the angry Iranian man with a gun or angry protestors. The discussion of these topics don’t delve further than how the mass media portrays Iran.

Nothing major would have changed about this movie if Affleck changed his mind in the last minute to shoot the whole movie in China instead. All he would need to do is replace the word Iran with China and substitute major Iranian figures with Chinese figures.

Though “Argo,” made an effort to stress horrors and sadnesses of war, it greatly fell lower than general expectations.

Class opinion

Jour21b, features writing, was very fun and the structure of the class helped me focus and stay on track overall.

I enjoyed discussing and picking our own AP Stylebook vocabulary instead of listening to a lecture on it because we were actively searching, reading and discussing the words instead of simply listening to a lecture.

Lectures can be very helpful, but this activity helped me remember many of the rules quicker. It was different, creative and didn’t feel boring.

Sometimes there were students who wrote on all capital letters and it got confusing, but other than that it was a nice way of learning from the AP Stylebook.

On quizzes, I felt it was always a bit rushed. I felt like if I had a little bit more time, I could have done better on some of the AP Stylebook questions.

This also held true for the peer edit activities. Perhaps using the De Anza Catalyst could be more helpful. In my past English classes, all the essays turned in were randomly shuffled amongst the class for peer edits and we’d have until midnight to turn it in.

I found many of my friends were confused about submitting work on WordPress. The Catalyst has similar blogging function and much of the work can be concentrated in one place instead of many different places.

Moving the whole peer edit service online also saves time and paper. De Anza has many open computer labs so it shouldn’t be so much of a problem as long as students plan ahead.

I liked the pace of the lessons and having an assignment for firsthand experience at the same time was very helpful to cement what I learned in class.

I was working as a La Voz news editor so sometimes the report workload I needed to write was a bit exhausting. At the same time, I felt all the assignments given out were important in helping us learn. I didn’t feel like I completed any of the assignments for nothing.

The agenda for class was sometimes confusing. On the green sheet, a whole weeks worth of assignments and quizzes were written on a single space and it was hard deciphering whether a quiz would be on Tuesday or Thursday.

As the class went on, I didn’t use the agenda at all because it was too confusing. Instead I depended on what was told in class.

I enjoyed all the movies and overall I learned a lot from the class.

Blog #4

While most sixth graders might cringe at the thought of taking on an extra essay assignment, sixth-grader Kelsey Krueger summoned her writing skills to raise $5,000 for MS, and earned a ride in a 27-foot-long hot dog shaped vehicle.

Kelsey Krueger, 11, won a contest by writing a 100-word essay about multiple sclerosis, winning a visit from an Oscar Mayer Wienermobile and a $5,000 donation to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

“I thought it was a good essay, but I didn’t really expect it to win,” Krueger said.

Her father, Loren Kruger, a 44-year-old salesman for Cold Spring Granite, was diagnosed with the autoimmune disease in 1998 and now gets around with the help of a motorized wheelchair.

“I’m still surprised she won the contest but also at the drive she has. She’ always thinking of new ways to raise money,” Loren Krueger said.

Kruger, who entered the contest during the summer after watching a TV commercial, attends Madison Elementary School and likes to read Harry Potter with her father.

Krueger was one of 20 winners out of 75,000 in Oscar Mayer’s “Win the Ride of Your Life” contest. Oscar Mayer is a Kraft Foods name brand.

This isn’t Kruger’s only donation to the MS society. She has raised $9,346 since 2003.

We are immensely proud of her,” said her mother, Teresa Kruger, a 44-year-old nurse at St. Cloud Hospital.

She used her time with the Wienermobile to raise even more money for the MS society. “I thought it would be a great idea to use the Wienermobile to sell hot dogs for the MS Society,” she said. Kruger raised $1,923 from the sale of franks and root beer floats for $1 each at Cash Wise and from donations for face painting, Wienerwhistles and bracelets.

At the end of the event, Kruger was already thinking about her next fund-raiser, a used book sale at the St. Cloud Civic Center next weekend.

Review of Jour 21B, Winter Quarter 2013

New to the school and course structure, Professor Farideh Dada strived to teach an engaging and informative Feature Writing class every Tuesday and Thursday morning for the Winter Quarter at De Anza College. Though the class was ultimately a success, the progress of the course was not without growing pains.

Fluency in AP Style is an essential skill for any journalism student looking to land a job in the field. While the power point presentations highlighting the most common rules a journalist encounters were clear and concise, the in-class participation section of the course seemed a bit rocky.

Each student was assigned a letter and was instructed to choose a couple words from their section to memorize and teach to the class.  Conceptually, this is a good idea that would allow students an introduction to a rather intimidating book of rules. However, since there are less than 26 students who show up to class consistently, not every letter was assigned. Also, because a student teaching the class was largely done on a volunteer basis, some of the letters were covered more than others.

Students might appreciate it if each week the whole class was instructed to find two examples from a couple sections (A and B for example), and then were called on to teach it to the class. This way, every one is looking at those two sections every week and by the end of the quarter, each student has looked through every section in the book.

While the in-class activities were thought provoking, many students complained that there wasn’t enough time to complete the projects. It seemed there were several times that a half hour period was divided to two or three activities, when perhaps focusing on one (maybe two) would have been more beneficial.

One such instance was when students were instructed to interview their neighbors and then write down five potential articles they could focus on from that conversation. This was a great icebreaker activity that tested a student’s ability to find an interesting angle in a sea of information while simultaneously creating connections between students.

The only problem was that the students were only given about five minutes to interview each person, a time that may not have been communicated well at the beginning of the activity. This left many students scrambling to scratch some legible on a sheet of binder paper at the last second, a desperate act which might have been averted with a bit more communication or time.

The course might benefit from adjusting time constraints for each project according to the amount of productivity that each activity generates. If students are engaged and getting into an assignment, they might appreciate a bit more time to complete it rather than cutting the assignment short to move on to the next thing scheduled for the class.

Homework was another portion of the course that caused some frustration among the students. Initially, students weren’t certain what they were expected to hand in or post to the blog every week. A few weeks into the quarter, the system solidified, but by then some students were already disheartened that they had missed assignments and gave up trying for a good grade in the course.

The course might consider an online schedule that Dada could alter each week. This would allow students to double check due dates and might assuage some potentially heated student/teacher interactions over missed deadlines.

Eventually, the course caught its stride. Students learned the routine and towards the end of the quarter every one seemed to be on the same page.

The films shown, “Shattered Glass” and “All the President’s Men,” were both engaging and relevant movies to show to a journalism class. It is always refreshing when videos aren’t merely used as a crutch for a lesson plan, but actually strive to be informative and enlighten the students.

Class discussions about ethics and “what if” scenarios could become heated at times, but were ultimately insightful debates that allowed people to express there views.

Future classes will benefit from the bumpy start the Winter Quarter class experienced and will enjoy the creative momentum Dada generated by the end of this course.

Feature Writing is a broad topic to try to cram into a quarter of class work, but I feel that each student took something constructive away from this course, which in the end is all anyone can really hope for.

Class review

Overall, 21B is a good class, a lot of work, but very informative. The work load is a bit debatable; I guess it would depend on what a person’s schedule is in terms of work and other classes.

I’m an editor and reporter for La Voz, and though I would hardly use that as an excuse, it would be nice to have had a break. The weekly assignments were not an impossible load, but since I was reporting at the same time as I was editing, it was more like doing three stories a week, plus my three other classes.

I have Biology 11, a lecture and lab. On Tuesdays five hours were lost to that. Plus I have a p.e. class where I should be getting three hours of gym time in a week, but I’m a bit behind on those.

And then there’s La Voz, there were a couple of Fridays where I forgot about posting the articles because I was in La Voz on Fridays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The workload was a manageable, if a couple of late assignments are overlooked. I did turn in a few assignments on Thursday instead of Tuesdays, I think I’ve missed one quiz and I have two absences so I think I faired pretty well. But it easy to lose track, I think we skipped a couple of assignments or did them out of order.

Outside of the workload being a bit of a problem, there wasn’t really much I didn’t like. Having taken 21A and La Voz in the past, with Mass Communications and Special Projects, AP is kind of etched into my mind. Which is why I didn’t take notes all the time.

I did like the peer reviews, it was nice to see what others thought of my work. And the movie, Shattered Glass was a good one. The exercise where we designed the front page of La Voz, with the rape, and new board member also worked great.

Blog #4?

A drive that keeps on going

Sixth-grader Kelsey Krueger, 11, won the Oscar Mayer “Win the Ride of Your Life” contest by writing a 100-word essay about multiple sclerosis.

“I thought it was a good essay,” she said. “But I didn’t really expect it to win.”

Kruger was one of 20 winners out 75,000 participants worldwide. Her prizes included a visit from an Oscar Mayer, 27-foot-long, hot-dog shaped, Wienermobile and a $5,000 donation to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Krueger raised another $1,923.37 by using her time with the Wienermobile to sell franks and root beer floats for $1 each outside of Cash Wise. Along with the sale from foods, donations came from face painting, Wienerwhistles and bracelets.

“I thought it would be a great idea to use the Wienermobile to sell hot dogs for the MS Society,” said Krueger.

The 8-foot-wide Wienermobile has a Chevrolet chassis, a “bun roof,” condiment-splattered designs, and seats six. There are six Wienermobiles and Krueger’s had a Wisconsin plate on the front that read “Yummy.”

People stared as they watched her and her vehicle. Among viewers were husband and wife, Gordon and Melissa Ross, who had brought their two sons from Rice just to see the Wienermobile.

Referring to his sons, Ross said they liked cars, “And all I’ve ever seen of the Wienermobile was on TV commercials.”

However, the 42-year-old Electrolux employee said he would not want a Wienermobile of his own because as cool as it was, he did not have any room for it.

Ross’s wife, Melissa, who likes her hot dogs grilled, said the vehicle was a “great marketing ploy” for the company.

The couple’s 9-year-old son wore an ear-to-ear grin as he stood beside the hot dog-shaped car, planning to email the pictures they took to relatives in Grand Rapids, MI.

This contest’s donation is not the only donations Krueger has made to the MS Society, she has raised $9,346.37 since 2003.

We’re immensely proud of her,” said her mother Teresa Krueger, a nurse at St. Cloud Hospital.

Krueger’s father, Loren Krueger, who was diagnosed with the autoimmune disease in 1998 and now gets around with the help of a motorized wheelchair, said he was surprised not only because she had won the contest but at the “drive” she has.

“She’s always thinking of new ways to raise money,” he said.

Kruger, who had entered the contest during the summer after watching a TV commercial, attends Madison Elementary School and likes to read Harry Potter with her father.

At the end of the event, Krueger was already thinking about her next fund-raiser, a used-book sale at the St. Cloud Civic Center next weekend.

“I like hot dogs,” said Krueger. “But I’m not a big fan of meat, even though I will still eat it. I’m more of a fruit-and-vegetable person.”

Exercise 6.3

Kyle Bachan

Dada

Jour21B

Exercise 6.3



Hot Dogs for Health

Sixth-grade Kelsey Krueger, 11, won a contest by writing a 100-word essay about multiple sclerosis. “I thought it was a good essay, but I didn’t  really expect to win,” she said.

 

Krueger was one of 20 winners out of 75,000 nationwide in Oscar Mayer’s “Win the Ride of Your Life” contest. Oscar Mayer is a Kraft Foods Brand name.

 

Krueger’s prizes: a visit from an Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, a 27-foot-long vehicle shaped like a hot dog, and a $5,000 donation to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

 

She used her time with the Wienermobile to raise even more money for the MS society. “I thought it would be a great idea to use the Wienermobile to sell hot dogs for the MS Society,” she said. Krueger raised $1,923.37 from the sale of franks and root beer floats for $1 each at Cash Wise and from donations for face painting.

 

“I like hot dogs, but I’m not a big fan of meat, even though I will still eat it. I’m more of a fruit-and-vegetable person,” Krueger said.

 

During her ride, people on the street stared at her and her vehicle. Among those who watched her were Gordon Ross and his wife, Melissa, who brought their two sons from Rice just to see the Weinermobile.

 

“They like cars. And all I’ve ever seen of the Wienermobile was on TV commercials,” said Gordon Ross, a 42- year- old Electrolux employee. Ross said he would not want a Wienermobile of his own : “I don’t have enough room for it, even though it’s definitely cool.”

 

The 8-foot-wide Wienermobile has a Chevrolet chassis, seats six, has a “bun roof” and carpeting with condiment splattered designs.

 

There are six Wienermobiles. This one has a Wisconsin license plate on the front that reads “YUMMY”.

 

This Wienermobile arrived from Madison, Wis., and was headed to Grand Rapids, Mich., after its stop in Waite Park.

 

“It’s a great marketing ploy for the company,” said Melissa Ross, who likes to eat her hot dogs grilled.

 

Their 9-year-old son, Tyler Ross, attends a St. Cloud parochial school and wore an ear-to-ear grin while standing beside the Wienermobile. The third-grader plans to e-mail pictures they took Saturday to relative in Grand Rapids, Mich.

 

Eyra Dzakuma, 23, was part of the Midwest trio from Oscar Mayer who drove the odd-looking vehicle to Minnesota and has a one-year contract to promote the company. She is know as a “Hotdogger” and was recruited from the University of Texas-Austin. She has a bachelor’s degree in corporate communications.

 

“Oscar Mayer is all about having fun and childlike innocence … and instilling those values in others every year,” said Dzakuma, who traveled throughout the country. “Most of the times that I can remember eating hot dogs and having fun is at stuff like family cook-outs, baseball games – things that are American Traditions.” About the Weinermobile, she said: “Driving it is actually very easy. There is no cruise control. The hardest part about it is parking.”

 

Krueger, who entered the contest during the summer after watching a TV commercial, attends Madison Elementary School and likes to read Harry Potter with her father.

 

Her father, Loren Krueger, a 44-year-old salesman for Cold Spring Granite, was diagnosed with autoimmune disease in 1998 and now gets around with the help of a motorized wheelchair. “I’m still surprised she won the contest but also at the drive she has. She’s always thinking of new ways to raise money,” he said.

 

“We’re immensely proud of her,” said her mother, Teresa Krueger, a 44-year-old nurse at St. Cloud Hospital.

 

At the end of the event, Krueger was already thinking about her next fund-raiser, a used book sale at the St. Cloud Civic Center next weekend.

 

This isn’t Krueger’s only donation to the MS Society. She has raised $9,346.37 since 2003.

 

 

Blog 6

The Top Ten 5-Star-Short Stories

on Kindle for Free

          According to Amazon.com

 

  1. 1.      Love Ya Baby

by Gary Sanders

 

  1. 2.      The Gate

by Riley Banks

 

  1. 3.      The Drama the Street and the Seduction

by Deatri King-Bey

 

  1. 4.      Happy for a While

by Inge Moore

 

  1. 5.      Indies Unlimited: 2012 Flash Fiction

by K.S. Brooks

 

  1. 6.      Starch

by Mary Anna Evans

 

  1. 7.      The Night the Moon Made a Sound

by Andersen Prunty

 

  1. 8.      African Short Stories- Adventures of Kalulu the Hare

by Lina Clay

 

  1. 9.      Horror Murder Life War: 5 Short Stories (Living in Eric’s Shorts)

by Eric Drouant

 

  1. 10.  Lust- Seven Literary Flash Fiction Stories (The Seven Deadly Sins)

by A.S. Anand

                                                               

Exercise 6.3: How Does a Kid Earn Money?

Never underestimate a kid, or you will have to regret!!!

It is a true thought for Kelsey Krueger, 11, a sixth-grader, one of 20 winners out of 75,000 nationwide in Oscar Mayer’s “Win the Ride of Your Life” contest. Her 100-word essay about multiple sclerosis helped her to reach a victory.

“I thought it was a good essay, but I didn’t really expect it to win,” she said.

Krueger entered the contest during the summer after watching a TV commercial. She is a student in Madison Elementary School, and likes to read Harry Potter with her father, Loren Krueger, a 44-year-old salesman for Cold Spring Granite. He was diagnosed with the autoimmune disease in 1998 and now gets around with the help of a motorized wheelchair.

This achievement brought Krueger two valuable prizes which were a visit from an Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, a 27-foot-long vehicle shaped like a hot dog, and a $5,000 donation to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Amazingly, Krueger used her time with the Wienermobile to raise even more money for the MS society.

“I thought it would be a great idea to use the Wienermobile to sell hot dogs for the MS Society,” she said.

At the end of the day, Krueger raised $1,923.37 from the sale of franks and root beer floats for $1 each at Cash Wise, and from donations for face painting, Wienerwhistles and bracelets. This isn’t Krueger’s only donation to the MS society. Since 2003 she has raised $9,346.37.

“We’re immensely proud of her,” said her mother, Teresa Krueger, a 44-year old nurse at St. Cloud Hospital.

During her ride, people on the street stared at her and her vehicle. There are totally six Wienermobiles. The 8-foot-wide Wienermobile has a Chevrolet chassis, seats six, has a “bun roof” and carpeting with condiment-splattered designs. This Wienermobile arrived from Madison, Wis., and was headed to Grand Rapids, Mich., after its stop in Waite Park. It has a Wisconsin license plate on the front that reads “YUMMY.” Among those who watched her were Gordon Ross and his wife, Melissa, who brought their two sons from Rice just to see the Wienermobile.

“They like cars. And all I’ve seen of the Wienermobile was on TV commercials,” said Gordon Ross, a 42 year-old Electrolux employee. Ross said he would not want a Wienermobile of his own: “I don’t have enough room for it, even though it’s definitely cool.”

“It’s a great marketing ploy for the company,” said Melissa Ross, who likes to eat her hot dog grilled.

Oscar Mayer organizing the contest Krueger took part in is actually a Kraft Foods brand name.

“Oscar Mayer is all about having fun and childlike innocence… and instilling those values in others every year,” said Eyra Dzakuma, a part of the Midwest trio from Oscar Mayer who drove the odd-looking vehicle to Minnesota and has a one-year contract to promote the company.

No wonder that Krueger was taking advantage of Wienermobile’s distinctions and Oscar Mayer entertaining activities to attract more people’s contributions to the MS society’s budget. At the end of the event, Krueger was already thinking about her next fund-raiser, a used-book sale at the St. Cloud Civic Center next weekend.

“I’m still surprised she won the contest but also at the drive she has,” Krueger’s father said. “She’s always thinking of new ways to raise money.”

Course/class opinion: Jour 21B—A challenge with feature writing

Make you cry, make you laugh, call upon your actions. That is the magic of feature writing. The Jour 21B course I am taking this winter opens for me a new door of the broad journalistic world, exciting yet challenging.

I enjoy reading feature stories in the magazines, especially the dramatic ones. Not only do they inform us what is happening around us, but they also give us many valuable lessons of life. I like lively descriptions and flexibility in the feature writing, which we cannot find in other daily news. Feature writing which leads the readers into its personal stories and human relationships can be seen as a kind of art– a combination between facts and literature.

Professor Farideh Dada is a good helper. She answered all of my questions after class and through e-mail. I feel comfortable to share my opinion with her because she has definite sympathy for English second language students. She always encourages her students to learn, so she arranges many assignments and activities in class. Working with her, you have to be an enthusiastic and industrious student. Quizzes are not quite easy, especially the AP Style part, but they are worth challenging and learning.

My first impression of the class was all of my classmates were native speakers, which made me a little worried about being left behind. Although I do not have a close relationship to anyone in class, all of them are friendly and cooperative at work. In the peer critiques, they gave me many helpful recommendations for my papers. I felt a little ashamed because my limitation of English prevented me from commenting on their papers as much as I wanted. However, their support gives me more motivation to escape from my inferiority and improve myself in writing.

Among many papers I read, I have a good impression on Nathan Mitchell’s writings. His vivid description and distinctive voice easily attract me into his stories. I admire his writing style and long to learn more from his articles. Unluckily, he dropped the class so early. Besides, the blog where I can connect with my classmates is also a good way for me to learn from their posts.

I find the Workbook useful in this class. Each exercise is a valuable experience in which I learn how to write a profile, a review, an enterprise story, an event or an editorial. From “Inside Reporting,” a friendly textbook, I discover the tips staying behind each article, which contribute to the successes of many feature journalists. The journalists have developed their skills from the basic motifs of the feature stories. “Creative, creative and creative.” That is what I always think about when I start to write a story: how to catch the attentions of the readers and how to keep them on reading my article instead of doing something else.

The two movies “Shattered Glass” and “All the President’s Men,” which reflect two opposite mirrors, teach me about the responsibilities of a journalist. A true journalist will never lie to the readers, and they will use their words to defend justice until the end.

I prefer this Jour 21B course to the Jour 21A I took before not because it is easier, but because I find out an aspect of journalism I really like. No matter what the final result is, I think all of my effort I put in this class can be considered as a success already.

Film Review: Argo—A heart makes the hero

            The movie “Argo” directed by Ben Affleck enjoys the resounding victory for the Oscar 2013 with three important prizes: Best Film Editing, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Picture. The film also won Best Picture – Drama and Best Director in the Golden Globe Awards and many other prizes. No wonder “Argo” is the movie receiving the most attention from the public opinion this time.

            “Argo” is a historical drama thriller film whose plot is taken from the book “The Master of Disguise” by CIA operative Tony Mendez and the article “The Great Escape” by Joshuah Berman. It is about Tony Mendez, who led the rescue of six U.S. diplomats from Tehran, Iran during 1979 Iran hostage crisis. The filming began in Los Angeles in August 2011 and also other places such as McLean, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and Istanbul.

Ben Affleck plays a vital role in this movie because he is the director, the main actor and the producer. He has been recognized for some of his directorial debuts such as “Gone Baby Gone” (2007) and “The Town.” (2010)

The opening scene captures the attention of the audience by a short summary about the Shah government. Then, the disorder and violence happen in front of the U.S. embassy in Tehran. Thousands of Iranians shout, burn the flags and climb over the wall to get inside of the building.

Mendez comes up with his solution by watching “Battle for the Planet of the Apes,” a TV show his son watches, and he begins plans for the escapees. They will disguise themselves as a Canadian film-making crew which scouts exotic locations in Iran for a science-fiction movie. This is a remarkable motif in the heroic films in which the solutions for problems always happen by chance.

The combination between intensity of the drama and the funny factors creates “Argo’s” unique attraction. It makes the audience feel breathtaking at one moment, but freely laugh after that. A funny scene starts when Mendez contacts John Chambers (John Goodman), a Hollywood make-up artist, who has previously crafted disguises for the CIA and producer Lester Siegel (Alan Arkin). A rock ‘n’ roll song, “Little T&A” by The Rolling Stones, contributes to the lively atmosphere in Hollywood, contrast to the dangerous situation the six escapees are stuck in.

“Argo” has a scene mocking journalism by Lester’s saying: “If you want to sell a lie, get the press to sell it for you.”

From “Pearl Harbor” (2001) to “Argo” (2012), Ben Affleck has improved a lot about his acting skills. No more depending on his outlook, Affleck affirms his talent through an outstanding performance. Although his Mendez’s expressions seem to be calm and even glacial, his spirit is revealed through his eyes.  A variety of emotions are depicted in the hero: his sadness when he confides his personal life to Lester, his determination to be responsible for the escapees or anxiety when confronting Iranian capture.

Although the film lasts 120 minutes, the audience may not feel it is long because of its fast speed. The film-makers use fast editing in which jumping cuts help the scenes change all the time.

“Argo” is widely acclaimed by American critics. Rotten Tomatoes reported 96 percent of critics gave the film positive reviews.

“Ben Affleck’s seamless direction catapults him to the forefront of Hollywood filmmakers turning out thoughtful entertainment,” said Stephen Holden, a critic of the “New York Times.”

Roger Ebert of the “Chicago Sun-Times” gave the film 4/4 stars, calling it “spellbinding” and “surprisingly funny.” He chose it as his best film of the year.

By contrast, on the Business Insider website, it claims Iranian authority is planning to sue Hollywood over “Argo” because of the movie’s allegedly “unrealistic portrayal” of the country.

Especially for this movie, don’t believe the trailer. Its happenings will keep you awake until the last moment when you have to say: “Argo, f*ck yourself!” as the way Lester explains about its title’s meaning.

 

 

 

 

Argo (2012)

Rating: 8.4/10

MPAA Rating: R (Restricted Children under 17 Require Accompanying Parent or Adult Guardian)

MPAA rating reasons: Sequences of violence, hard language.

Running Time: 120 minutes

Cast: Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin, John Goodman

Director: Ben Affleck

Writer:  Chris Terrio (screenplay) from the book “The Master of Disguise” by Tony Mendez and the article “Escape from Tehran” by Joshuah Bearman

Produced by: Grant Heslov,

Ben Affleck, George Clooney

 

Distributed by: Warner Bros.

Playing at: CineArts @ Santana Row

Extra Credit: Restaurant Review. Siam Thai Cuisine – the quintessence of Thai character

A marriage of centuries, a combination between old Eastern and modern Western areas converges on something called uniquely Thai character. Being considered as an exhibition of food quintessence, Siam Thai Cuisine is a choice that the admirers of Thai food cannot dismiss.

The restaurant includes a lunch menu and other specialties. On the lunch menu, there are variable kinds of food made from chicken, shrimp, beef and tofu with prices around $9-$10. Siam Thai appetizers attract customers by their remarkable names such as “Angel Chicken Wings,” “Golden Tofu,” and especially “Pla Muk Yaung,” which are fillets of calamari char-broiled, served with house sweet garlic sauce. The price of an appetizer is expensive because it is near the price of a main meal. However, the restaurant sometimes introduces its new appetizer by giving customers free samples with their meal.

Whether it is chilli-hot or bland, the harmony is a guiding principle behind each dish.  The “Metro Newspaper” has awarded Siam Thai with the “Best Tom Yum Soup” in the Silicon Valley. There are many kinds of soup such as Tom Yum Kung, Tom Yum Kai, Tom Yum Poa Tak, but their mutual feature is a hot and sour flavored broth with lime juice, lemongrass and crushed roasted pepper.

Salad is a healthy choice with a diversity of vegetables such as green papaya, tomatoes, green beans, cucumber and green leaf lettuce which become more delicious by being marinated with prawns and fish sauce.

With the same kinds of meat such as pork and beef, the restaurant can change them into many different recipes with abundant ingredients such as garlic, peppers, sweet and sour or barbecue sauce.

The curry is also a specialty in Siam Thai Cuisine including green curry, yellow curry, especially red curry beef and pumpkin, which accompanies beef with coconut milk, pumpkin, peppers and basil.

The restaurant likes to cook seafood (salmon, prawn and calamaries) with coconut milk, Thai basil, bell peppers and garlic to get rid of their fish odor as well as create their mouthwatering fragrances.

Fried rice is made from Thai jasmine rice, which is soft, sweet-smelling, but not too glutinous. Besides, Pad Thai, Pad See Ew and Pad Wood Sen are three most famous kinds of noodles in Siam Thai. Pad See Ew is made from the biggest threads, while Pad Wood Sen is made from the slimmest threads.

There are variable choices of deserts that no place else can have in Siam Thai such as  fried banana with homemade coconut ice cream,  sweet sticky rice with fresh mango Thai, and custard on sweet rice and coconut milk. All of them are served with the price of only $4.95. Besides, Thai ice tea is the most special beverage, sweet and scented with $2.75 for each glass.

Although the restaurant is small, it has a warm and hospitable atmosphere. The interior decorations are formal and traditionally Thai characteristic. The restaurant uses dim red light which creates relaxing and intimate feelings for the customers. Siam Thai is an ideal place for serving family, formal meetings and dating.

The only weakness of the restaurant is long time waiting for food, which is about 20 minutes, but if you buy food to-go, you will be served first.

If you have never had a chance to enjoy Thai cuisine with traditional perfection, don’t hesitate to visit Siam Thai or choose this place for your family and friends meetings. Try one time, and you will never regret it.

Siam Thai Cuisine

Score: 21/30

Address: 1080 S De Anza Blvd, San Jose, CA 95129

Phone:(408) 366-1080

Prices: $9-$15

Serving Hours:

Lunch Hours: Mon – Sat: 11:30AM – 2:30PM

Dinner Hours: Weeknights 5PM – 9:30 PM

Weekends: 5PM – 10PM

(Closed for dinner on Monday)

 

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Short form graphic

Oz: The Great and Powerful

Oz: The Great and Powerful Review
By: Jimmy Osburn

Sam Raimi’s “Oz: The Great and Powerful” dazzles in visuals but lacks the dash of magic that Disney was hoping for when they purchased the story rights from MGM.
The story begins with Oscar “Oz” Diggs, played by James Franco, a magician traveling with a tiny circus along with his assistant Frank played by Zach Braff. Diggs is more of a con man than a man of magic but when a cyclone whisks his hot air balloon away to the land of Oz, he must find a way to fulfill a prophecy that says a great wizard will come and save the land from the wicked witch.
“Oz: The Great and Powerful” has all of the ingredients needed for a fun time at the movies. With a beloved classic story, big name director, hot young talent, and endless technology to bring it all to life, you would think “Oz” would be a slam-dunk for Raimi and Disney. Unfortunately it doesn’t come together quite in the way it does on paper.
The story begins with Oscar “Oz” Diggs, played by James Franco, a magician traveling with a tiny circus along with his assistant Frank played by Zach Braff. Diggs is more of a con man than a man of magic. But when a cyclone whisks his hot air balloon away to Oz, he must find a way to fulfill the prophecy that a great wizard will come and save the land from the wicked witch.
The prequel to the 1939 MGM classic “The Wizard of Oz,” does manage to get several things right in order to keep the audience entertained. With several nods to the original film including an opening sequence shot in 4:3 aspect ratio, fans of the classic tale will smile at the references made to the original “Oz.”
The visuals are everything you would expect in a modern day “Oz” film. Filled with vibrant colors, CGI creatures that include an updated version of the flying monkey that may be nightmare inducing, the overall feel of what the world of Oz is comes through in a way that no other adaptation has been able to achieve.
You may not get bored with “Oz: The Great and Powerful,” but you may leave the theater feeling let down if you are a fan of the franchise and has eagerly awaited its return to the silver screen.
There are some standout performances from some of the cast, most notably Zach Braff as the wisecracking flying monkey sidekick, Finley, who delivers the comic-goods of the film. As well as Rachel Weisz as Evanora, one o the witches of Oz.
“Oz: The Great and Powerful” is not a bad time at the movies, by any means. It’s also not a thrilling one, either. It’s a fun, cute movie for the family to enjoy together. But when it’s over, you probably won’t want to take another trip down the yellow brick road to see it again.

Movie Review: Anna Karenina

Rajvir Kaur

6.10: Anna Karenina-na-na-not

Director Jon Wright’s choice of Keira Knightly playing the role of Anna Karenina was as good move however the pair’s lack of strength in relaying emotion to the audience hurt the story.

Anna Karenina is a drama film, set in the 19th century, with a run time of 129 minutes, as stated on the International Movie Database (IMDB). Rated R, though not really needed when compared to today’s PG-13 movies, the story is about a married woman (Knightly) who has an affair with a man named Vronsky. All is well until Anna becomes mentally ill as the criticism of society impends on her.

Wright and Knightly have worked together in the past, creating pieces of art like Pride & Prejudice and Atonement. Knightly has strength when it comes to making historic films however, even with a strong supporting cast, her role as Anna was only so-so. Not only did she fail to connect with Anna’s character, who pretty much goes crazy, Knightly’s “splay” of emotional turmoil failed to sway the audience.

An ironic part is the train. In “Anna Karenina” the novel by Leo Tolstoy, Anna murmurs, “it is a bad omen” when she first meets Vronsky (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) by the train. However, the way that scene is acted out in the movie is debatable.

It wasn’t that bad, but because that scene of the train is a turning point that foreshadows the future, Wright definitely lost points as director. The train is reoccurring throughout the film, but that first scene was not rightfully executed.

Johnson, who played Vronsky, Anna’s lover, was not the right person for the job. Either that, or the director did not do a good job directing. Just like Knightly’s inability to connect with Anna, Johnson failed to fill Vronsky’s shoes. In Tolstoy’s novel, Vronsky is portrayed as the standard masochist, a leader worthy image, however in the film Vronsky is like a lost boy who can’t seem to come out of his mother’s shadow.

Jude Law, playing Anna’s husband Karenin, did an excellent job. His role as an honorable figure who fulfilled his duties yet lacked in emotion was portrayed almost perfectly.

The winter illusion was a good twist to the plot, the cold air was somewhat filled with emotion and it went really well with the story. The theatre setting was also a plus.

However, even beyond the struggles of the actors, was the execution of the scenes. At many points during the movie, there as a “rushed-through” feeling as certain scenes were done too fast while other scenes lagged.

Overall, IMDB rates the movie 6.7 out of 10, which about fits. It is a good storyline and the audience is able to get the gist of it, but not enough to where a person would walk out of the theater saying, “that was a good movie.”

Overzealous police edit #2

Colin Blake

Journalism 21b

14th of March, 2013

Overzealous police strike again

Many Santa Clara residents are crying foul after police shot and killed a seemingly lethargic mountain lion that found its way into a residential zone.  Police are being criticized because they did not explore other options of neutralizing the animal. Law enforcement officers claim that other methods, such as a tranquilizer gun, would have provoked the lion into a frenzy of sorts.

The lion, shot while relaxing in a tree in a resident’s yard, hardly seemed to be an immediate public danger. In fact, the lion was so calm and not bothered by the growing crowds that local television stations were able to film from close up, ultimately capturing the killing on film. The film, showing the police bullet hitting the immobile lion, which then tumbled out of the tree limp until coming to a sudden halt on the ground, was played repeatedly on a local television network.

“I’m sorry to see the police took the easy way out,” one resident said.

This kind of behavior rings of sloppiness and laziness in the highest degree. Of course, this was not the first time police have shot and killed animals for the sake of moving on with their day. The most egregious and bloody example of this barbarous behavior was exhibited in Ohio. Police, in 2011, shot and killed 48 exotic animals on a private exotic animal preserve after the owner release them; not one animal survived.

Here, in this specific situation, police had relied upon bunk information because according to Antonie Marinus, the author of “The Chemical Capture of Animals,” the dart would have caused torpor and prostration within minutes of impact. The police should do their research next time or at least have a plan to accommodate for these kinds of situations for there seems to be blood, running carelessly, from their hands.

With the shrinking natural animal habitats caused by urban sprawling, it would be wise to have an informed police force aware of ways to preserve life, in whichever form it takes, rather than guaranteeing execution. As it stands currently, and if these situations continue, the police will seem like a state funded butchering club.

‘Lore’ Movie Review

 

As children, parents define your world. They teach you what’s right and wrong, how the world works, and how you should interact with others. What would you do then, if you found out the world they had made for you was a lie? Australian-German drama “Lore” seeks to answer this question by following one girl’s story through Germany in 1945.

When the Allied forces arrest her SS officer father and Nazi-supporting mother, 14-year-old Lore (pronounced LOR-ha) finds herself as mother and caretaker to her four siblings, including her infant brother Peter. Left to fend for themselves, Lore (played by newcomer Saskia Rosendahl) leads her siblings on a voyage through the Black Forest and across a hostile post-World War II Germany to the safety of their grandmother’s house near Hamburg.

Shunned at every turn and slowly understanding that the majority of people they encounter now hate them, they find one man willing to help- Thomas, a Jewish refugee.  Thomas (played with breathtaking restraint by Kai-Peter Malina) offers to help the destitute children navigate across the treacherous environment, using his Jewish identification papers to help them disguise their own heritage.

There is a palpable attraction between the two main characters, but the disgust that Lore has been taught to feel by her parents and the Hitler Youth battles against the desire to get to know the mysterious refugee. Lore’s realty and conviction crumble as they traverse hundreds of miles, with each step bringing her closer to understanding the realty of their parent’s actions and the regime they supported. As she fends for her life, she also must try to discern what kind of a person she’s fighting to be.

“Lore” is Australian director Cate Shortland’s second film, following her debut to feature length cinema with the well-received “Somersault” (2004).  The tension Shortland weaves throughout each scene is so thick that the impact of a tentative touch feels like that of a hand grenade. “Lore” truly thrusts audiences into the desperation of post- World War II and reveals a side of the war that many neglect.

Carried by the two main actors, Rosendahl and Malina, the entire cast gives achingly convincing performances that draw you in with every subtle movement they make. You feel the dirt on their hands and their hearts pounding in their chests.

Beautifully shot by cinematographer Adam Arkapaw (Animal Kingdom), the movie feels unassuming at times, glossing over visual details that may make you want to give the movie a second viewing (if you can handle the emotional upheaval it may leave you in).

The only thing audiences will be left wanting is a just a little bit more. “Lore” is a beautiful adaptation of Rachel Seiffert’s novel “The Dark Room,” which weaves the stories of three post- World War II German citizens. However, since even the attention of the book is divided between storylines, you find yourself wishing there was just a little bit more meat to it. A couple of the scenes seem convenient almost, which takes away from the historical reality the movie borrows. A few moments of brilliantly crafted symbolism help illustrate the film’s message, but ultimately are counterproductive, as it merely helps fictionalize the story.

“Lore” in unrated is in German with English subtitles. It has a runtime of 109 minutes and is playing at Camera 3 in San Jose and at the Nickelodeon in Santa Cruz.

Stars: 3 out of 4

Humans are misusing their power

“Cruel, atrocious, bloodthirsty, inhumane, lack of compassion …” People seem to use lots of words for the police’s action of shooting the lion, but one is enough: “HASTY.”

The images of a mountain lion running down from the hill and losing itself in a resident’s front yard make people wonder if the natural habitats still exist in this world. If the natural environment is large enough for the wild animals, we may never have a chance to see them appearing in our yards just for “relaxing?!” No doubt the areas of the natural habitats are more and more narrowed by the human impact. People have been deforesting for agricultural development, companies and expanding their residential areas.

The government always calls upon people to live in harmony with the environment, and they have set up many laws for protecting nature and wild animals. However, in an emergency in which human security are threatened, people still put their priorities above all, and they readily root out every cause of the “dangers.”

By that shooting, the police are working against all of the governmental appeals as well as our efforts to conserve the natural environment. If killing is the only way to protect us from dangerous lions, people should hunt them down in the local mountains. However, we should consider if it is a wise decision. Absolutely NOT! Shooting is a simple solution, in contrast with the time, money and efforts spent on protecting the natural habitats and wild animals. On the lion-den tripod website, it said because the environmental conditions for the lion’s survival are complicated such as prey availability, permanent water sources and suitable places for hiding their young cubs, raising the lions and keeping them alive become harder now. The mountain lions may be threatened with extinction in more 10-15 years by our careless persecution.

The police act of shooting lion can encourage other people to kill wild animals every time they confront them. Tranquilizing the lion could lead it to attack, which is not a persuasive excuse for the shooting act. In other words, the police do not seem to have enough preparation for this unexpected situation. They already admitted that they forgot to turn on the emergency alert system when seeing the lion in the front yard. Because the government invested nearly $200,000 for the emergency- alert device, it needs to be used appropriately. Disappointedly, the police did not use any extra options to warn the residents, like loudspeakers, or use other supporting equipment to catch the lion, except for the gun. Instead of letting the residents concentrate around the location, the police should have dispersed the crowd, so they could complete their mission in the most effective way. However, all of what happened proves their lack of experience and high responsibilities. The police seem to carry out their solution in a “rush” and careless way.

The police need more training in unusual situations, so they can solve the problems more flexibly.  Although what they did does not break the law, their act may negatively affect how people think about nature and wild animals. Like a part of the “Earth Song” by Michael Jackson, we are disregarding of the significance of natural lives:

What about nature’s worth

It’s our planet’s womb

What about animals

We’ve turned kingdoms to dust

This land does not only belong to human, so precautionary measures for troubles and balancing between our lives and other lives around us are highly appreciated. Killing should be the last choice.

Lions, Tigers and Bears Oh My!

Cupertino Courier

Lions, Tigers and Bears Oh My!
Many residents were shocked to find out that a lion had wondered into their community. However, a few more residents had become even more upset when the mountain lion was shot and killed by the Santa Clara Police department.
When a wild animal happens to wonder into our’ cities and small communities, a more humane method should be used to remove such dangers. For the police officers on scene the only choice was to shoot the lion, while it was relaxing in a tree.
Other options were considered, like the use of a tranquilizer to immobilize the animal. The real issue was how long it would take for the tranquilizer to take effect. The police had argued that the twenty-five minutes it takes for the dart to take effect is a risk that had too many possibilities.
One would think that even if there are a lot of dangerous possibilities that could arise from this situation, there were numerous ways to reduce those dangers. However, the cost to reduce such danger was (time consuming) apparently for the Santa Clara police department.
A “Lack of Compassion” was the common statement made by few residents who had learned of the lion being killed. They did not agree with just outright killing the lion, when other (humane) ways were available.
In Defense of themselves the police had said that twenty-five minutes is a lifetime to wait, and the lion had already leaped over 6-foot fences. News reporters, bystanders and people even in their houses can be put in danger. If the lion was shot with a dart it could cause the animal to go into (active-flight) mode and put more people in danger.
Yes, there is a chance the animal’s reaction could go one of two ways: One. The lion will go into flight mode and flee from the tree and try to get distance from any sort of danger. It is agreed that the lion could have a chance of attacking innocent bystanders. But if the police had simply used the dial-up system to warn the public, than maybe the number of people outside would have been lower. Although the exact number of people cannot be determined, the $200,000 dollar contingency plan that was implemented after the 1998 fluke tornado. Could have most definitely opened the option to using a tranquilizer and returning the animal to the wild where it belongs.
The second mode for the lion would be (fight). The lion would attack its aggressors and therefore would be killed in self defense by the police. Unfortunately, the police chose to shoot the lion in the tree.
It is plain to see that by the events that had accord, a lions life could have been saved if certain methods were taken, but due to the selfish nature of the human being. Another life on this already unforgiving planet has been taken for human preservation and safety.

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