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Mike S

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  1. Soft and Quiet (2022) - Apple TV rental Probably best to approach this one with as little plot awareness as possible but also with the knowledge that this film quickly goes to a dark place and then accelerates rapidly into some uncomfortable social horror. Beth de Araújo's debut is a hugely impressive, one shot real time, technical achievement with an outstanding cast working in a most unique manner. It is also one of the most uncomfortable, brutal, and sickening films I have experienced in a very long time. Unlike the hugely overrated 1917 the one shot is much more than a gimmick as it totally embeds the viewer into the middle of some grim and highly unsettling scenes with an intimacy that is astonishingly intense. As I said, probably best to go in not knowing too much but I will say that the relatively early reveal of where the story is going is quite something and, from that point on, it is unrelenting. It's too harsh a film to want to watch again anytime soon and there are a few minor issues but as debuts go this is as great and promising as Jordan Peele's 'Get Out'. 4/5
  2. I did the free month's trial via a current gen ATV 4k when the service launched and there was no 4k content then and that was enough justification for me to cancel. That and the near total lack of anything I wanted to watch bar Frasier. Pretty dire all round but the lack of a full fat service in the UK is more than a little insulting.
  3. Yesterday I was told that soft carrots can be fixed by leaving them in water overnight as they soften due to dehydration. The same may apply to broccoli. Most veg seems freezable but peas are the the absolute champions. Chillis are definitely fine after freezing - there is zero impact on flavour plus I'm sure that chopping them whilst frozen reduces the transmission of stingy bits to the fingers (and then the eyes). I also recall reading a few years ago that the nutritional value of some vegetable is actually improved by freezing although I can't recall which particular ones.
  4. Excellent! I shall try that in the next week or so. Thanks!
  5. Mike S

    Low

    Absolutely heartbreaking news. I knew she was very Ill but it is still such a shock and has properly upset me. RIP Mimi.
  6. Is this the one with a lentil base that I remember seeing you posting the recipe of and which I made a mental note to try (I'm trying to eat much less meat)? If so, I can't recall where you posted it? but would love to have a go at making it.
  7. This is not on Disney! I was very much looking forward to watching this but shall have to wait.
  8. I assumed everyone was sailing away to find a copy of this. Great to hear it's on Disney as I'm keen to see it so that's tonight's entertainment sorted. It is really helpful to show the format/streaming source/whatever for films.
  9. I am slightly more envious of The Thing but am highly envious of both. Hammer Dennis Wheatley pairing for me tonight - The Devil Rides Out and To The Devil A Daughter.
  10. It looks fine to me with everything at max setting and 4k - nothing spectacular but functional enough. Lighting seems a bit flat maybe but that might be due to so many maps being set in sunny ME or Mexican locales. I've not found any of the maps to be especially interesting. The half dozen or so I have played have all felt like random collections of very connected rooms and corridors with quite small open areas. I've seen very little sniper or marksman usage as the maps seem to encourage assault rifles, SMG's, and shotguns so it's just loads of high speed running around with short to medium range weapons so far. There was much more variety in Vanguard and Cold War but it's early days and they added lots of maps to those over the year. I would like just one decent sized three lane type map for now though so I can do a bit of sniper alley type playing. Surprised that folk are finding it slower and tactical as it seems pretty fast and hectic to me. The new mine/grenade thing that burrows into a wall and explodes on the other side has a lot of potential for fun.
  11. Anything more than one shotting is too long for me! I have no idea how many bullets it takes to kill someone as I'm not getting enough feedback from the game for me to be sure but it is definitely more than two (just using the starter assault rifle and SMG). It is more than I recall Vanguard was when I played SC on that but it may be less, it is hard to determine exactly but I need to be aiming at an enemy and hoping I am hitting them for way longer than I like. It is hard to underestimate just how much a decent hit marker sound adds to player feedback and this is very lacking (I've tried both the 'classic' and 'MW' marker sounds) even after turning down the volume of other sounds but it is still weak and I really shouldn't need to make big changes to the audio mix. Ah, excellent! Fingers crossed.
  12. Thought is was just me as I can't see it anywhere, it was under the mode filters on the last one. This is quite a significant drawback.
  13. Can somebody tell me how to activate hardcore mode? At the moment the long TTK and lack of decent hit feedback sounds makes this feel like I am firing blanks into sponges which is not great. HC will at least remove the spongey feeling but the lack of decent hit feedback is probably going to curtail my interest in this pretty quickly.
  14. I played the campaign last week as it was a dull rainy weekend and, as COD campaigns go it was not too bad at all. It is the first one I have given more than an hour to since probably the original MW 2 so must have been doing something right. It was a good move to release it a week early as if the MP were available at the same time I'd have probably given up on it quite quickly. It is an almost entirely linear experience with no room for experimentation but definitely felt less like the endless shooting gallery of most COD campaigns. Some of the added variety was often a little dull - too much stealth, any crafting was too much crafting, and a few real tough levels that cost me more lives than the rest of the game put together. Notably the convoy and tank which were just endless deaths (on hardened) and extremely irritating. I also got tired of the armoured enemies which felt like playing the sponges in non HC MP modes as well as the trial and error gameplay of so many of the maps. The Amsterdam level was an amazingly recreated environment but the stilted, stiff, animation of the NPC's took the edge off the photorealism a tad and it was a shame there wasn't much to do - almost as if it were made solely to get circulated on social media. Most importantly though the guns felt extremely solid and very loud so that's promising for the MP which. coincidentally, has just finished pre-loading so I look forward to getting into that tomorrow. I hope there is an option to uninstall the campaign (and not install Warzone) as per Vanguard but at the moment the campaign is described as 'required'. A solid, great for a wet weekend, 6/10.
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