Review: American Hustle

American Hustle

American Hustle

Last weekend, I watched American Hustle (2013), an American crime film about two con artists (started by Christian Bale as Irving Rosenfeld and Amy Adams as Sydney Prosser), who were caught by an FBI agent (Bradley Cooper) in loan scams. The FBI agent offered to release the two if only they were willing to help him to  investigate a dirty operation on corrupt politician in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s in USA. 

American Hustle, which won three Golden Awards, is basically a story about ambition, love, loyalty, duplicity, greediness and also corruption. Took the setting in the 1980’s, the movie appeared  pretty classy to me.  However the 138 minutes film soon become pretty boring because it moved pretty slow.

There were three parts of the movie that I like a lot

  1. Irving, who owns a laundry chain in New York and sells stolen art on the other side, met Sydney in a pool party. After Irving, who fall in love with Sydney, told the truth to her that he is a con artist; she accepted him as what he is and agreed to work together. She created a persona as Lady Edith Greensly, a British lady with a banking connection in London. Since they work together, money roll in like a water. As a con artist, Irving believes that most people (prospective clients a.k.a victims) would believe what they want to believe.
  2. It is clear to see that Sydney, who is  a former stripper, has a ambition to get out of poverty, be rich and be somebody’s else. In the middle of the movie, Sydney, who is apparently tired to be somebody’s else, said that she does not want another fake life anymore. “No more fake shit!” she screamed in tears.
  3. While Irving and Sydney  were working for the FBI agent to investigate Mayor Carmine Polito as the part of corruption circle in New Jersey. Somehow, Irving found a genuine friend in Carmine.

I would say that I am not particularly a big fans of action and/or crime film. But there are three lessons to learn from this film, which are

  1. Poverty is not good for anyone but there is always a positive way to get out of it even you would not be rich instantly. So don’t let the greediness manipulate yourself to manipulate other people for your own fortune
  2. Living a fake life is tiring
  3. It’s not easy to find a genuine friend who will accept you as you are so learn to be truthful about yourself.

So have you watched this film? What do you think about it?

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Review: Couchsurfing

La RepublicaFew years ago, I was introduced to courchsurfing.org by a friend of mine, a blogger from multiply.com (I was still active blogging with multiply.com platform back then, too bad that it has been shut down now because I love that platform so much as I have been blogging with that platform since 2005 : ( ).  I found that couchsurfing.org was interesting because I could meet many different kind of people with different kind of stories such as where they have been to, how they saved money for traveling, how much money they spent in certain country, where to stay, listen to their point of view about other cultures, etc. I would say that it is fun.

So in 2009, I decided to sign up and create a profile in couchsurfing.org to get new friends and meet new people from all over the world. Unfortunately, I was not particularly that active because I started my job in Jakarta and did not really have time for myself. My work and the Jakarta traffic made me lazy to attend some gatherings because I was too tired

However luckily, I had the opportunity to meet number of amazing people and young travelers, which opened my eyes about life. I met four European girls, who studied in Singapore in 2010; a 21 Australian boy who has been traveling to 70 countries after he managed to save for two or three years since he was 16 (he didn’t go to senior high school if I was not mistaken); an Italian photographer who stayed in hundreds of couch while he was traveling and many more. Most of them have great story and are very down to earth. 

I was amazed but jealous at the same time with their ability to travel around the world. So why am I jealous? It is not because of their financial flexibility but Indonesian citizen doesn’t really have an easy access visiting a country, especially European, American and also Australian country.

We have to apply for tourist visa, complete a bunch of document, pay a lot of money for the visa with the possibility of losing it if we were rejected. While most of Westerner (Lucky you people!) have the privilege to  come and go visiting the developing country very easy such Indonesia, India, Thailand, Vietnam, etc. Right?!

I actually have a hell lot of things to complain about but I will leave it there because I know that I am luckier than them, who comes from third world country or African country. I am grateful with what I got.

But anyway…. so here I was being profiled by an Italian couchsurfer in La Republica, an Italian newspaper on August 2010. I think I will activate my couchsurfing profile again to find a new activity in 2014.

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Review: Where To Shop in Ubud?

Whenever I go to Ubud, there are two boutiques that I always check out whether they have new collections or not. Those are Gingersnap and We’Ar, which are located in Jalan Hanoman Ubud. I would say that Gingersnap and We’Ar are the best boutique in town because they have unique design with a good quality material with a reasonable price. Gingersnap and We’Ar have collection for women and men

Gingersnap

Let’s shop in Ginger Snap [2012: Oktofani]

Gingersnap opened their store in Jalan Hanoman, Ubud in 2010. Since then, I have purchased some of their collections from a white short, green Turkish pant, a blue polka dot dress, a white turtle neck top and also a grey long Turkish pant with a belt.

I would say that Gingersnap style are very simple yet unique. On the top of that, they have a good material. I do not mind to spend Rp 650,000 (70 USD) for Turkish pants or Rp  350,000 (38 USD) for white tank top because of  the quality.

Ginger Snap Shop in Jalan Hanoman, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia [2012: Oktofani]

If you want to see what kind of collection Gingersnap has for you, you can check their blog at http://gingersnaplifestyle.blogspot.com/. However, I must say that Gingersnap does not have a well-managed website where you can see the preview. Yet, I can assure you that Gingersnaps has a wide range of good quality collections with reasonable price. Believe me, you will not regret every cent that you spend in their shop .

Gingersnap has two shops which are located in Jalan Raya Monkey Forest, Ubud, Bali and Jalan Hanoman, Ubud, Bali.

We’Ar

We’Ar It [2012: Oktofani]

I am not a yoga freak, I do not even do any yoga but I love We’Ar collections are yoga wear clothing. We’Ar design are very simple and very colorful.  Their collection is suitable to be worn as a casual outfit. We’Ar make their collection with an organic material which required a good quality maintenance if you want to keep your collection in a good condition. You can just check their collection in their website www.wear.itTheir website is very organized!

If you visit Bali, you can go to We’Ar stores, which are locate in Jalan Hanoman, Ubud, Bali and also Jalan Kayu Aya, Seminyak, Bali. But if you are not visiting Bali and want to get We’Ar collections, you can just go to their online store in their website.

Again… I assure you that We’Ar has a good collection of yoga wear with a reasonable price for a good quality stuff.

We’Ar It Store in Jalan Hanoman, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia [2012: Oktofani]

So, if you plan to come to Ubud, Bali. Don’t forget to visit those two boutique because they have good quality stuff with a good quality material. I can tell you that you will not waste your money for nothing in those couple of shops. It is because as I have lived in Ubud since  2009 and went back and forth between Yogya, Ubud and Jakarta there are so many shops in Jalan Monkey Forest and Jalan Raya Ubud that sells many crap with a bad quality stuff but with a very expensive price.

As a woman, who loves shopping, I don’t regret what I get in those two shop. I am writing this review is not for advertising their shop because I do not get paid from them. I am writing this review because I am just too in love with their collections.

Make sure that you pay the right price for the right quality of stuff! Bali has so many shops that sell good quality stuff with a reasonable price but Bali also has SO MANY SHOPS THAT SELL JUNK with unreasonable tourist price! So be a smart shopper if you are traveling to Bali! Happy shopping!

Blue polkadot dress by Ginger Snap [2013: Jolsvi]

Blue polkadot dress by Ginger Snap [2013: Jolsvi]

Brown leather bag by Ginger Snap [2013: Nataya]

Brown leather bag by Ginger Snap [2013: Nataya]

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Green Turkish Pants by Ginger Snap [2011: E R]

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