The festive season has finally arrived, and with it, plenty of great flicks to give us an escape from the horror that is Christmas shopping. This month, we’ve got the long-awaited sequel to Wreck-It Ralph, a couple of gritty period dramas, and a hilarious new movie from the guys who gave us Step Brothers. And, as always, stick around till the end to find out how you can catch one of these hot new films for less.
1. Second Act
Rom-com queen Jennifer Lopez is back! If you’re a fan of Younger, you’ll love Second Act. J.Lo plays a 40-something underachiever stuck in a low-paying retail job who, thanks to a fake Facebook profile and a less-than-accurate resume, lands a flashy corporate gig complete with a massive office and luxury apartment. But will her street smarts and charisma be enough to maintain the ruse? Or will her new life come crashing down?
2. Mortal Engines
From the makers of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit comes the adaptation of Philip Reeve’s dystopian YA novel, Mortal Engines, set in a post-apocalyptic world in which cities have been mounted on wheels and turned into giant, travelling machines, struggling to survive on Earth’s remaining resources. When apprentice historian Tom and masked assassin Hester are tossed out of the ever-moving London, they are suddenly forced to fend for themselves, working together to take down the evil Thaddeus Valentine (played by Australia’s own Hugo Weaving).
Over the past few months, I’ve taken you on a culinary journey of Europe, Asia, the US and Canada. Now, it’s time to head south of the border and experience the fiery, flavoursome cuisine of South America. So strap those taste buds in for a wild ride across the Amazon and down through the wild, rugged mountains of Patagonia!
This Peruvian seafood favourite has made its way onto many an Aussie restaurant menu, but there’s simply nothing better than the real deal. Made from raw, fresh fish that’s been cured in lemon juice and spices, ceviche is hugely popular all along the east coast of Central and South America, but Peru has pretty much claimed it as their national dish, serving it up with corn, onion, and sweet potato. Simply delish!
It seems every culture has it’s own take on fried dough, from Hungary’s lángos to Canada’s BeaverTails. In Peru, it’s all about picarones! These doughnut-like treats, made from squash and sweet potato and covered in a sweet syrup, originated over 200 years ago as a cheaper alternative to buñuelos (a type of sweet fried dough ball popular during the festive season). Root veggies might not sound like fantastic dessert ingredients, but don’t knock it till you’ve tried it!
Another month, another batch of huge Hollywood flicks coming our way! While last month’s offerings were pretty hard to beat (we still can’t get over A Star is Born), from the looks of it, November will certainly give October a run for its money.
From the much-anticipated biopic of one of the most beloved bands in music history to a couple of long-awaited sequels, we’re ready to ditch work altogether and spend the next month at the cinema. Care to join us?
Read on for this month’s top picks, and stay till the end to find out how you can catch your next movie for less!
1. Bohemian Rhapsody
You’d struggle to find someone who doesn’t know and love at least one Queen song, but regardless of whether or not you’re an ultra-fan like us, you’re going to love Bohemian Rhapsody. This biopic follows the band from its formation to its iconic 1985 Live Aid performance, focusing mostly on the band’s late, great frontman, Freddie Mercury, played to unanimous praise by Mr. Robot star Rami Malek.
Halloween is just days away, and people around the nation (and around the world) are excitedly preparing their costumes, carving their pumpkins, and stocking up on sweets. But for many countries, Halloween isn’t a time of trick-or-treating, scary movies, and gorging on sugary treats – for some, it’s a time of mourning the dead and communicating with spirits.
So grab the popcorn and join us as we discover some of the spookiest Halloween traditions from around the globe!
1. Mexico – Day of the Dead
Over Halloween and into the first two days of November, people throughout Latin America (particularly Mexico) celebrate Día de Muertos – Day of the Dead. It’s believed that this is the time of year during which the Gates of Heaven are opened and the souls of the deceased return to the Earth to be reunited with their loved ones. Families traditionally prepare an altar in their home filled with food and alcohol as offerings to the spirits, while toys and lollies are left for the souls of lost children.
2. Italy – Ognissanti
All Saints’ Day, a Christian festival celebrated on November 1 (the day after Halloween and the day before All Souls’ Day), has a special significance in Italy, where it’s known as Ognissanti. Every year, in the last few days of October and into early November, Italians flock to cemeteries to leave flowers (usually chrysanthemums) on the graves of lost loved ones and even strangers, creating beautiful fields of colour in the usually dark and depressing sites. They also leave red candles in the windows at sunset and set a place at the dinner table, hoping their dearly departed will return once more.
If, like me, your skincare routine consists solely of a daily cleanse and moisturise and your fitness regime has all but fallen by the wayside, you’re probably baffled by the seemingly endless number of beauty, skin and weight loss treatments on offer. And if, like me, that low-effort skincare sesh and 30-minute walk ’round the neighbourhood don’t quite produce the results you’re after, you might decide to actually try one.
But behind the complicated terms and impressive before-and-afters, do you really know what you’re in for? Today, I’m going to delve deep into the beauty world and decode some of the most popular treatments, so you can book that appointment with full confidence.
This rejuvenating skin treatment uses a crystal-tipped (or, for the ultimate luxury, diamond-tipped) suction device to exfoliate, vacuum up all the dead skin cells, and buff the skin. Afterwards, you may experience a little redness, but this will fade to reveal the cleanest, smoothest skin you’ve ever had. You’ll likely notice a huge reduction in the appearance of acne, scarring, fine lines, pigmentation, sun spots, and enlarged pores – just make sure you apply sunscreen religiously for a few days after. With instantly visible results and no downtime, you’ll be hooked after one session.
There’s something truly special about going to the movies. The big screen, the comfy seats, the smell of fresh popcorn and a chance to escape from the real world for a couple of hours – what more could you want?
We get it, life gets in the way, and a trip to the cinema seems like the last thing on your priority list. But you know what? You deserve a night out. And if you’ve been holding out for a killer flick to hit the box office, you’re in luck – October is absolutely bursting with blockbusters.
Check out our top picks for this month, and be sure to read till the end to find out how you can save big on your next movie!
1. A Star Is Born
Lady Gaga. Bradley Cooper. Need we say more? A Star Is Born may be the third remake of the iconic 1937 film of the same name, but it certainly won’t leave you with that “ugh, enough already!” feeling that comes with most remakes. The movie, which opened to rave reviews and is already considered a serious Oscar contender, follows an alcoholic musician (played by Cooper) who discovers and falls in love with a young, up-and-coming singer (Gaga). And while the story itself is enough to draw us in, it’s the music and incredible chemistry between our two leads that will stay with you long after you leave the theatre.
So far, we’ve taken our tastebuds across Europe and down through Asia. Now, it’s time to hop on a plane and head on over to North America – the land of fried food and oh-so-sugary sweets. Put on those stretchy pants, cleanse the palate, and join me as we embark on yet another foodie safari.
1. Philadelphia Cheesesteak – Pennsylvania
Philly cheesesteak may sound boring (how good can some beef and cheese on a roll really be?), but just wait till you try one in the city where it originated. Think perfectly-cooked slices of rib-eye, gooey, melted American cheese, onion, mushrooms, capsicum and sauce on a long roll… I’m already drooling. If you’re heading to Philly any time soon, don’t leave without trying the O.G. cheesesteak from Pat’s King of Steaks – it’s iconic.
A few weeks ago, I took you on a foodie tour of Europe. We dined on raclette, drooled over waffles, tucked into traditional Austrian schnitzels, and munched on Portuguese tarts. Now, it’s time to move on from pastries and cheese as we head to the vibrant, tastebud-tantalising Asian continent. Shall we?
1. Indonesia – Rendang
If you’ve ever been to Bali (let’s face it, 80% of Australia’s population practically lives there), you’ve probably tried rendang – but if you haven’t, it’s time to put it on the bucket list. This iconic dish features beef, lamb, goat, or chicken, cooked in coconut milk and all the spices you could ever want. It might not look the most appetising, but trust us, it more than makes up for its appearance with rich flavours.
I don’t care about shopping. Or museums. Or even getting that all-important Instagram photo. At least, not that much. No, for me the best part about travelling is the food. Each nation seems to have its own unique flavours and dining customs, and there’s nothing I want to do more than try every single one of them.
Over the next few weeks, I’ll be taking you on a tour of all the essential foodie experiences every traveller must try around the world. Up first, it’s the land of cheese and wine, Europe.
1. Switzerland – Raclette
You thought I was going to say fondue, right? Don’t get me wrong, I’d never turn away a big vat of melted cheese, but some raclette would go over even better. For the uninitiated, raclette is a type of Swiss cheese, traditionally heated over a fire or on a specially-designed hotplate. The melted, gooey goodness is then scraped onto potatoes, gherkins, dried meats and more. Pair it with a glass of white wine and you’re pretty much in heaven.
When the time comes to choosing their next holiday destination, millions of Aussies are drawn to Bali’s stunning beaches, bustling nightlife, and vibrant culture. But let’s not lie to ourselves, one of this Indonesian island paradise’s biggest draw-cards is its seemingly endless Instagram opportunities.
Speaking of which, here are eight of the most picture-perfect places to add to your Bali bucket list.
1. Wanagiri Hidden Hill
Located in Munduk, a quiet mountain village about two hours from Ubud, Wanagiri Hidden Hill’s giant swing and human birds’ nest were reportedly built by the locals to attract Insta-obsessed tourists in mid-2017, and judging by the thousands of photos snapped there, we reckon it’s been pretty successful!