Review: Interstellar

INTERSTELLARImage courtesy of Warner Bros.

Directed by: Christopher Nolan

Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, and Michael Caine

****1/2

Wow. Just wow.

What a visually stunning piece of work. And not only was it a privilege to watch, but the story was executed so well.

I think it’s fair to say that Christopher Nolan is quite an ambitious guy who likes to make a statement. After watching his films you’re more than likely to be holding onto your head, trying to digest what’s just happened. Think Inception, Memento and hell even The Dark Knight trilogy.

The plot of Interstellar is, in one word, dense.

To simplify it without ruining anything: Earth’s run out of food and everybody’s relying on corn crops to survive. The air is becoming unbreathable. Now NASA’s sending a team out into space through a wormhole and into a new galaxy in the hopes of finding a habitable planet.

While it may sound apocalyptic, the film is more about hope and survival then it is about doom. It’s deeply scientific and quotes physics theories like no tomorrow.

There’s a lot to digest what with black holes, gravity, new dimensions and wormholes being thrown left, right and centre. But in its confusion, it also makes total sense. Time does run slower on certain worlds and other dimensions can exist. (Dr. Kip Thorne, one of the world’s most celebrated theoretical physicists, was a consultant on the film.)

Interstellar takes you out of space and presents to you so many ideas. Ideas that may seem impossible but once you see and experience the vastness of an empty space (in IMAX!), it’ll daunt and scare you.

Though take away the science and it’s still an opera; a masterpiece. It’ll tug at your heartstrings and it’ll make you want to soar.

A brilliant cast (Jessica Chastain a clear standout) and, in my opinion, a much better space film than Gravity. Hans Zimmer has once again delivered a perfect score to accompany the intensity and emptiness of space. Juxtaposing that with the unexpected silences really makes the viewing an engaged experience.

It’s bold and it’s beautiful and you most definitely need to go see this ASAP.

Applebar

IMG_6321IMG_6318Applebar, 2488 Bells Line of Rd, Bilpin

If someone were to ever ask me what my last meal would be, I’d probably say “something from Applebar” after what was probably the most delicious experience at their cute little diner.

When my boyfriend and I drove to the Blue Mountains last weekend, we promised ourselves just one meal out. We had bought groceries to cook at the cabin and allowed ourselves only one relaxing meal out to save money and maximise hermit time. But after one bite into that delicious woodgrilled pork loin with honey, black pepper, garlic, soya glaze, avocado salad and chips there was no way we weren’t going back. (As you can see on my Instagram – we became regulars pretty quickly.)

For me a good dining experience has to include: good table service, good food, good atmosphere. A good restaurant would have to produce consistently tasty dishes. Applebar ticked all these boxes. It just saddens me that I have to drive more than 90 minutes if I ever want a taste of that upside down apple cake again. I still have dreams about that cake. The apples were so fresh and tart, the pastry just melts in your mouth and the homemade custard is just divine.

Applebar’s one of two restaurant choices when you’re in Bilpin (the other being the one in the Botanic Gardens). You’re not exactly spoilt with choice, but, oh my, who gives.

Apple Bar on Urbanspoon

How do you like them apples

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Sometimes it’s just nice to get out of the city for a few days and enjoy the great outdoors. I’ve made it my own mission to visit as many Australian cities and towns as I can and to appreciate what the land down under has to offer.

Last weekend my boyfriend and I stayed at the cutest little cabin out in Berambing, a small village in the Blue Mountains.

It was called the Love Studio and we had booked it via Love Cabins. I know it sounds extremely cheesy and makes you want to laugh until you cry, but if you’re looking for a couples getaway – I can’t recommend it enough.

It had a spa overlooking the mountains, a fireplace, the most comfortable leather lounges and, perhaps most importantly, nobody else in sight. I can’t even begin to explain how peaceful and relaxing it was to switch off from the world (and our phones) and just enjoy each other’s company.

1&2 Our cosy little Love Studio. The first picture pretty much sums up the view from the bed, spa, kitchen and verandah. Bush. Everywhere.

3-7  The beautiful flowers and views from the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden. Did you know it’s Australia’s highest botanic garden, sitting at 1000 metres above sea level?

9-10 My boyfriend and I pretty much overdosed on apples in the three days we were there. Apple cider, apple juice, apple pie, apple teacake – we were there. Nothing beats local produce which was just so crisp and fresh and I-would-drive-back-there-in-a-heartbeat good.

I haven’t mentioned it in this post but we ate at (what I now regard as the best restaurant in the entire world): Applebar. So good. But it’s so good that it deserves its own blog post (which is coming soon). If you follow me on Instagram (which you totally should), you’d know how highly I rate them.

Weekender beauty

IMG_6305Clinique products via Activeskin

I really should be packing. I’m heading to the Blue Mountains for the weekend and should really gather my things instead of writing about what I’m going to be bringing. But oh well. Such is life. (I’ll probably end up throwing everything I own into a giant plastic bag at the very last second.)

I have a few little short trips coming up actually. First being this weekend, then a trip to the Great Barrier Reef with the girls, then camping in Uluru and then, finally, a few days in Melbourne with the boy. Damn you, Jetstar sales.

So naturally the idea is to bring as little as you can and enjoy as much as you can. I’m only planning to bring an overnight bag, a backpack and maybe a handbag filled with everyday items i.e. phone, wallet, keys, snacks, etc. So when it comes to bringing beauty products, I have to stop short of lugging my entire collection.

Thank heavens for itsy-bitsy-sized products. Like this adorable sample gift pack from Clinique (it even comes in a cute little cosmetics pouch!). When travelling or exploring a new space, I don’t really fuss about curling my eyelashes or concealing spots. The quicker I’m out the door, the better – there’s too much to see to spend it on my face!

That’s why I’m taking this little set with me this weekend (when I eventually get around to packing, that is). Featuring a cleanser, eye serum, mascara, lipstick and its signature Dramatically Different Moisturising Lotion, I think that’ll be enough to make me look human for three days away from home. Of course what’s not included is my SPF (Clinique’s Super City Block), because going out with applying sunscreen is a big no-no.

The Super City Block 30+ is actually my favourite facial sunscreen – I’m currently on my fourth tube. It doesn’t apply white and agrees with my skin – two things that I think are quite important and are actually quite difficult to find in a product. The Clinique range offers different options for different skin types and is generally agreeable on most people. There’s no strong smell; everything is quite simple, which I like.

Activeskin (where I got these products!) offers a whopping range of 165 Clinique products, ranging from Skincare (92 products), Makeup (68 products), Bath and Body (7 products), Mens (2 products) and gift packs (4 products).