My favourite movies of 2012

A bit late with sorting out this list but there were a few “big” movies from last year I have only watched recently. Many of these top 10 movies of the year lists often miss out movies which were out early on in the year. Often, thats a good reason but sometimes you get some really good movies out around January/February. In 2012 for example, Chronicles was out 1st February – and that was a really good movie.

The List

Finding it too hard to make an actual top 10 but here are my favourites in no particular order (these are movies which were released in cinema in 2012):

  • The Amazing Spiderman – really liked this. Andrew Garfield makes a much better Spiderman – although hes probably too good looking to be Peter Parker and not that much of a “geek/nerd” if he manages to get the hottest girl in the school
  • Total Recall – sure many would disagree but I liked this. I like Colin Farrell and any movie with the beautiful Kate Beckinsale gets an extra few points from me.
  • The Hunger Games 
  • The Raid – not much dialogue but non-stop martial arts action. Brilliant. (Dredd was very similar but with guns – it was only in 3D in the cinema so that didn’t help but Dredd is not bad).
  • The Avengers – great fun. Great action. Hulk star of the movie plus as always the Iron Man/Tony Stark humour
  • Looper 
  • Argo – well directed. Great story. Well acted
  • Ted – very funny
  • Chronicles – great movie which many people will have forgot about since it was all ages ago (or missed it completely). I originally thought it was some Twilight type movie.
  • Ruby Sparks – a different sort of “romance”. More an indie comedy/fantasy/romance. Maybe a bit slow to get going a bit but really enjoyed. Stand out scene is near end where it gets very dark. Zoe Kazan who plays Ruby wrote the movie – the first thing (TV/Movie) she has wrote.

Worth a mention:

  • Skyfall – although overall it was just OK and the best bit was the first 5 minutes (and I personally wanted more gadgets), I did like the villian.
  • Taken 2 – its hard when “Taken 1” was so amazing but this was good (if a bit daft) fun.
  • Silver Linings Playbook – movie was alright but Jennifer Lawrence was AMAZING in it.
  • The Muppets – was actually out in 2011 in US but not out in UK till Feb 2012

Worst movie(s) of year:

  • Killing Them Softly – rubbish! 
  • The Bourne Legacy – boring. Little action. Nothing happened for about 45 minutes.

I live in the UK so some movies are not even out here which seem to feature in other peoples list. For example, Zero Dark Thirty, Lincoln and Flight. Also Wreck It Ralph is not out yet but was out 2012 in US – may not be in “top movie” lists but looks great.

Other movies didn’t manage to see in 2012:

Life of Pi
21 Jump Street
End of Watch
The Hobbit – although not bothered about it

I am sure I have forgot some movies and no doubt people will disagree with my list – including the exclusion of Dark Knight Rises.

Google Maps – navigation. Review

I tested out the new Google Maps built in turn by turn navigation a couple times over Christmas. Its pretty good overall. It looks nice and since its Google Maps, it works very well as a map.

The new Google Maps app actually draws the maps now using vectors so its much more efficient. It means when you using it as a navigation, it is able to download/’draw’ the maps quicker. 

I actually planned a route and when I almost reached destination, I turned off the 3G. Probably could have turned off data (but I was driving so had lack of time) but thought that would slow down its rate of downloading the maps. It seems OK for a bit but then it just seemed to freeze. Nevermind not download the maps but the actual “car” on the map didn’t move. 

Anyway, when it was working it overall worked well. I did wonder how much data it was using though since its not like a TomTom app which has all the maps already on the iPhone. Not certain how much it used but for a journey about 35 ish miles I think it used ball park 50Mb?? Possible more but didn’t have an accurate reading of data used before. If you use it a few times you could easily use up your data allowance – unless your on unlimited. I am only on 500Mb and I may go over before month is up!!

I do have a few issues with the navigation in Google Maps app. The main one is that the colour of the motorways is blue but the line you are to follow. Can be a bit confusing when it all merges together. Not ideal when driving and trying to just glance at the phone – which is already small compared to most sat navs. 

Another issue is that it lacks information which you may expect – like speed limit (and maybe speed cameras). If your in a unfamilar place, and even with road markings and street lights as an indicator, it sometimes nice to have something else to confirm the speed limit.

Finally, when using the navigation, we were in the middle of a journey when the app popped up with a message. Something like a feedback message to ask if we liked the app, how good we thought it was – something like that. If you in the middle of using this, you could be in the middle navigating through a complicated bit of journey with lots of turnings and then a stupid message pops up!

We will see if Google make an amends to the app. The Google Maps navigation has been on Android phones for ages so maybe things like the motorway colour won’t change??

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