My Take of Apple over Microsoft

In my years of working with computers (since 1997) I have primarily worked on Windows, both professionally and for pleasure – I’ve worked on Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows NT 2000, XP and then finally Windows 10, I have to say that for me I preferred XP and 10 the best and loathed Vista with a passion.

I am a relatively new Apple user with my first Apple device being my very first iPhone 5c which I purchased last year when I got enough of my Samsung S3mini giving me gip. Android was really annoying me and did not find it as stable a platform as everyone had been raving about – several friends of mine had been swearing by their iPhone’s and so I decided to give it a try. I took the plunge and bought my first iPhone, all I can say is it is the very first smart phone I have owned that I have not looked back on, in fact – there is no going back, I am stuck with iPhone.

Now, I am by no means an IT expert and I don’t claim to be, I never will claim to be what I’m not but what I am is an end-user, as are many of us. Recently a friend of mine sold me his MacBook Pro and though this is not the first time I have used OS X, having had my first introduction to using an iMac of one of my best mates in 2007 and then I used this same model  MacBook Pro in 2014. I instantly fell in love with Apple, both with my mates iMac and the other one. But, one thing I could not do is afford one.

As a writer I already knew that Macs were the way to go due to their functionality, their preinstalled publishing software, as well as the software that you can get for writers on Mac that you cannot with Windows, I for years desperately wanted a Mac but I feasibly could not afford one and so I stuck to Windows. Last year I purchased an Asus running Windows 10 of which I had to replace three times until it worked properly, it was brand new that I bought from PC World in the Easter Mega-Deal Sales. At that point I desperately wanted to get back into my writing and so had already started saving for a MacBook Air but then the sales came along and my patience wained and so went to PC World to buy a Windows laptop – if anything it has taught me to be patient.

Towards the end of last year a very close friend dropped me a message to say that he was selling both his iMac and his MacBook Pro and that he’d sell the Pro to me for £200, well – I jumped at the chance. We worked out a payment plan and I knew my friend who I was living with at the time was interested in a laptop, so I offered my laptop to him and due to the favours he’d done me told him to name his price. Expecting it to be quite a low price he offered me a very generous price and so we arranged on when we’d do the transfer. And as such am now a proud MacBook Pro 15″ early 2011 model. All I can say is I love it.

Here I will give my own experience of OS X vs Microsoft Windows (aka-Win-blows). As a first time, long-term end-user of MacBook and OS X I will touch on both the hardware and software benefits for me.

MacBook Pro and OS X Sierra:

  • Its interface is entirely user friendly, the machine itself is designed with the end user in mind and the end user being the artistic types; the writers/authors, musicians, painters.
  • OS X Sierra works perfectly for me, it is easy to find your way around, again, entirely user friendly and not at all complicated. The applications available are great, something that completely outdoes Microsoft Windows.

Here I am ranting about Apple and while I know that there are users out there that absolutely hate Apple products – its understandable that we all have preferences. For me I do not ever see myself going back from iPhone or from Mac, OS X is good for me, it works better for my needs than Microsoft ever did.

I’m a writer, I have plans to further my writing and have an idea for a project that I want to start working on, by way of a screen writing course and whilst I am doing that a project that I want to focus on at the same time. And as many of my fellow writers also use Apple because it works better for us than Windows ever did. It is also easier to crunch away on the keys of a Mac than it ever was on a normal laptop.

So for me, bring it on. There is no going back.

Magnificent Seven (2016)

magnificent_seven_xxlg

With this being my second film review and the fact that I actually had to wrack my brains to try and remember if I had seen the first one with Yul Brynner and I must say I was sceptical and I still don’t really know. But as I have now seen this one I’ll give it my review.

As I said I was sceptical, but I was also looking forward to it; as I have just written my review for Forsaken I was expecting a difference and one of the things that I thought would be a let down was I assumed it was going to be packed with special effects but I was pleasantly surprised when I noted that there were not as many as I had thought. First, it opens as a classic western (a plus for me being a western lover) would start with the intro and the beginning scene was of the townsfolk of Rose Creek holding a meeting in the town church discussing how to get rid of the evil industrialist, Bartholomew Bogue, played by Peter Sarsgaard who has set upon their town during the gold rush, what ensues triggers the story which led to the town hiring bounty hunter Sam Chisolm to rid them of Bogue and his extremely ruthless “army”, what makes this story exciting is it emerges that there is history between Chisolm and Bogue.

Once hired Chisolm goes about hiring his band of six men, starting with Chris Pratt whose character I thoroughly enjoyed throughout the film, not only is he a talented gunfighter (Hollywood style) his character is fairly amusing, a cocky character but not at all a character to dislike, the second best character for me was a tossup between Jack Horne (Vincent D’Onofrio) or Red Harvest (Martin Sensmeier) who plays a Comanche, so keeping in line with his Native American roots.

The cast is a diverse one and does make the film, including Ethan Hawke, who plays a civil war veteran suffering from the after-effects of the war and really brings his diversity to the screen in this role – I cannot say he was amongst my favourite characters but he does play a good part, along with his sidekick, South Korean actor and martial artist Byung-hun Lee (Billy Rocks), but I promise their are no high-kicking antics from this Taekwondo expert, that would have been a put off and even though I enjoy martial arts I do think it would have prompted my rating to be even lower.

I have decided that this needs a second watch and so there might be an edited version of this review but it was enjoyable enough. Denzel Washington is his usual talented self but I will say he seems to have unlimited ammunition and his sixshooter seems to have an unlimited capacity cylinder which was a minor setback for me which is why I have given it the rating I have, it is however Hollywood and so to be expected.

So, when you take off to see this film, enjoy it for I unfortunately do not see this a genre making a comeback to screen. Unless I decide to settle down and do my screenwriting course. It would be great to have some more original stories come back to screen rather than remakes.

Enjoy the film, feel free to write comments up on how you found it.

Forsaken (2016)

forsaken    hero_forsaken-2016

A western which I like to describe as the western of heart I have been waiting for. Starring Kiefer Sutherland, Donald Sutherland, Demi Moore, Brian Cox and Michael Wincott.

John Henry Clayton (Kiefer Sutherland) returns home after many years away after first going to the civil war and then having become a gunslinger. He returns to his estranged father Reverend Clayton (Donald Sutherland) to find his mother having passed away. Their community has come under threat from a ruthless businessman (Brian Cox) clearing the way for the railroad with a band of ruthless outlaws who has also hired a gunslinger and gentleman, Dave Turner (Michael Wincott).

As westerns have become a dying genre I feel that this film has not been given the credit that it deserves. Filmed in Alberta, Canada this film offers spectacular scenery and the movie itself is heartfelt. My feeling is that many reviewers and critics have become corrupted by the later westerns which offer special effects and stunts that would have been unusual back in the day and not expected of a cowboy back then, whereas Forsaken is filmed in a classic style western and offers much more reality than most modern westerns. Of course everyone enjoys the modern films with explosions and gunfights which in all reality would not be possible and in real life would get the “gunslinger” killed, we all need an escape from reality at times but Forsaken keeps it real, there are no special effects to speak of and the scenes that take place are from a scenario which could happen.

Demi Moore, being the most beautiful woman to come out of Hollywood, to date plays her part very well, as usual and Michael Wincott is probably the best character in this film, a gentleman who has been hired to do a job and is not your typical bad guy. Donald Sutherland is as usual very good as is Cox. Who’s character you will come to dislike intensely, but as we all know, Cox plays a bad guy very well.

What else makes this for me is the father-son cast between Donald and Kiefer.

If you are anything like me who loves a good western you will feel like you know the characters. I love how this movie was written and enjoy the pace of the film and the story. It keeps it real.

What I also find helps me with a film is watching the extras before I watch the feature film (once I purchase it on DVD/Blu-Ray) to see what the cast and crew went through to make the story a possibility to best fit their audience. In the making of the film there is an amusing part with Michael Wincott who’s words are “seconded” by the whinnying of one of the on-set horses.

My review is entirely of my own opinion, we all have our preferences. You should watch this film and judge for yourself, but if you like a western this is a must watch. All the roles are played well.

Take a watch, I think you will be pleasantly surprised.