I can't believe that we're a month into the final quarter of the year! I swear the years are going by faster than ever since the pandemic hit! What a glorious start to September we had weather-wise and then a mini heatwave in October! Kinda makes up for a rainy July....kinda! It really made a huge difference after what has to have been the most miserable summer for many years! It really lifts the spirits to wake to a sunny day, or at least not a rainy one! I hope you all had a wonderful month? I didn't do a September loves post so I'm combining both months' loves in this post. Here's what I've been loving...
TV: I'm not an Autumn person, who loves the dark evenings, however new seasons of our favourite TV shows eases the pain a little bit! We love The Morning Show but haven't watched all episodes yet, so no spoilers please!
Sex Education (Netflix): It was inevitable that this series would have to come to an end and I really hoped that it would end oh a high (unlike a lot of other TV shows) and it didn't disappoint, in my opinion. I didn't love the third season as much as the previous two so I was a bit nervous to watch this as I hate when shows you love end badly. If you haven't seen this series, it's about a high school where one of the students decides to become a sex therapist (this is his mother's job), obviously it has to be on the down low and there are plenty of twists and turns, side stories etc. This final series was set in a new school, which focused on diversity and inclusivity. It found the main character, Otis, struggling to find where he fitted in, whilst the other main character, Maeve, struggled with personal issues and again, finding her place on her course in an American college. Initially, I struggled to get into it as there were so many new characters to get to know but it rounded off very well with all of the stories reaching conclusions. It was refreshing to see a different side to Otis' Mum, played brilliantly by Gillian Anderson. If you haven't watched the series, don't just jump in here - watch from the beginning and enjoy!
George Michael: A Different Story (Paramount+): George Michael was my first love so I'll always enjoy watching anything about him (or Wham!). This is a documentary, made in 2004, which follows his musical career and includes all of the ups and downs of both that and his personal life in those years. I love how candid George is in this documentary, and how down to earth he was, but he also had to have some ego to be in the music industry and being as successful as he was. I always like to see the story from the artist's own perspective and hear their words. There have been quite a few biopics in recent years but this was released long before then and is a documentary rather than a biopic - I couldn't actually think of anyone who could do the role of George Michael any justice to be honest - can you?
McEnroe (Sky Documentaries): I know that John McEnroe was quite a divisive character back in the day (and probably still is), however I always liked him and loved his passion. This documentary explains his journey and gives insight into his thoughts while playing tennis and just his life in general. He's a perfectionist and also had parental pressure to be the very best so a lot of his outbursts were through frustration at himself. He also disliked that tennis was seen as a middle class sport at Wimbledon and he was seen as the bad boy with a working class background. I don't want to say too much in case you're interested in watching it but he was certainly misunderstood. He's also of Irish heritage, so of course I'm going to love him!
Beckham (Netflix): I was never a huge Beckham fan - his look was far too pretty boy and preened for me, but I did admire his skill and liked how he and Victoria were unashamedly in love.... until the (alleged) 2004 incident! This documentary has some great home footage of him as a child, practising his skills every day in the garden, with his father constantly critiquing and encouraging him, which stayed with him throughout his career and ultimately made him the champion he was. It really focuses on the mental health aspect of the aftermath of France '98 and the abuse he suffered for months afterwards, yet he had the strength to dig deep and overturn the hate and basically give people the two fingers by winning the treble with Man Utd in '99. He seemed to get as much abuse as he did adoration everywhere he went, but had the inner strength to overcome it all. We also see his and Victoria's relationship intertwined with the story and a glimpse into family life at the end. I found it very interesting and he was refreshingly honest (about most things!).
Strictly Come Dancing is back! I absolutely love this show! I love seeing the progression of the contestants as the weeks go on, but I have to say that the standard this year is very high already. On my list of things to do when I get my health back, is take dancing classes because I love it and miss just regular nights out when we danced for hours. I'm not saying that I'll be Strictly standard but I would love to learn the basics of several dances and waltzing reminds me of my Granda.
The Graham Norton Show: I love the format of this show, where there are usually four, sometimes five main guests, who all sit together on the couch from the beginning and interact with each other as well as having their own segment. It can be a very eclectic bunch but all will get along so well and Graham is the perfect interviewer (not being biased because he's Irish!), getting little gems of information from each one and connecting them. There is a musical act also, who joins at the end for a quick chat after performing. It's less than an hour long, upbeat and a great way to unwind on a Friday evening!
Dumb Money (Cinema): I had no idea about this while it was actually happening but I'll blame that on Covid, as this all happened during the pandemic. It's a true story based on a financial analyst and his side hustle, which was sharing his thoughts on the stock market on his YouTube channel. He notices that GameStop stock is falling in value and spends all of his money on stock, he encourages his viewers to do the same because "the big guys" a.k.a. hedge fund companies, were assuming that GameStop would close down and were short-selling the stocks. Roaring Kitty (the YouTuber's name) encouraged everyone to hold tight and they saw their stock value rise to astronomical amounts (I have to say that I would have been tempted to sell at this stage but this was a movement at this point), which ultimately led to one of the hedge funds folding and an investigation by the U.S. House Committee on Financial Services. It was astonishing to see how an individual could have such huge influence that the company that sold the stocks ultimately couldn't pay out on what it sold when the price rose and ordinary individuals had such huge faith in Roaring Kitty that they invested what little they had and for some, it changed their lives, although not all sold at the right time. I only wish I had known who Roaring Kitty was at the time because the percentage gains were astronomical!
The Founder (Netflix): This film is based on the story of the actual founders of the the McDonald's franchise and the man who made it a success. I didn't actually know the history prior to this film but I must admit to being quite shocked, The "founder" as he calls himself is a salesman and he stumbled across a fast food outlet on his travels. Back then, you parked up and a server came to your car, took your order and brought your food to you, so when he arrived at the original McDonald's (he was selling milkshake machines at the time - the latest in many attempts at finding what would make him his first million), he was baffled by the fact that you queued for your food, didn't receive cutlery and took it away to eat. It was a finely tuned machine in how the system worked - each burger had two pickles, a machine that put the same amount of ketchup on each one, the staff knew the exact amount of fries to give, how to wrap each burger etc, and they stuck to selling burgers, fries and either a soft drink or a milkshake, The two brothers (the McDonalds) were happy to show him around their kitchen/food prep area and share how this well oiled machine worked. He wanted in and they eventually let him but he then began to make changes, which they were unhappy with. He had a lot of franchises but very little capital but a chance encounter led to the idea of buying the land, which he would then house the franchises on and this is when the money started to roll in. He more or less bullied the original brothers out (they had lost the will to fight and had health issues), and it left a bad taste in the mouth. The only good thing is that his wife left all, if not the majority, of her money to charity and the Ronald McDonald foundation helps families around the world. It's a very interesting story, well acted (Michael Keaton plays the main character) and show some photos and real footage at the end, which I always like to see after a film based on real life events.
Flora & Son (Cinema/Apple TV): This film is a story about a young mother and her teenage son who are struggling to find a connection. She's frustrated at how her life is/has turned out (she's only early to mid-thirties) and he's a typical teenager who is frustrated in general. He like rap music, isn't interested in school and isn't one of the 'cool kids'. Flora, played by Eve Hewson, finds a guitar and decides to give it to him to spark an interest in a hobby - he's not interested so she decides to learn how to play herself by taking lessons online. She develops a great rapport with her teacher, who is based in L.A. and in the meantime, gets involved with her son's taste in music and encourages him to write some lyrics to go with the music he's producing. As a single mother of a teen, she's trying to do her best to keep him on the straight and narrow whilst also dealing with her own frustrations. After one too many misdemeanours, Flora's son ends up in juvenile detention for a few months but when he gets out, she gets her ex (his father, who happens to be a musician) to join them (strictly as a backing musician) at a band competition, which they enter and finally bond over. I tend to love John Carney films - they're easy to watch, usually around the hour and forty minutes mark and based in Dublin, generally around music. If you enjoyed Once and Sing Street, you're bound to enjoy this!
I shared some of my transitional beauty loves already (general beauty, fragrance and skincare), so I won't go over those again! I’ve also been loving Loving Tan Express Mousse because I always feel that I look healthier with a bit of a glow. Over the past two months, I’ve had Covid, sinus & chest infections, the flu (real flu, not just a bad cold!), gastroenteritis and impetigo! So I really do feel the need to look better than I actually feel and tan helps!
The countdown to Christmas is on now! I have the baking done and plan on doing all of my shopping, wrapping and decorating in November so that December is relaxing with plenty of time for our favourite films, Christmas tunes, a weekend break and seeing. friends! I really would love to hear what you have loved recently?
Thanks for reading!
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