Shane’s Queen Site gets a major revamp and site move

Shane’s Queen Site gets a major revamp and site move

After a few month’s redevelopment Shane’s Queen Site is now resident on shanemcdonald.ie having moved from the old queen.shanemcdonald.org address.

My Queen website started life on tinet one of the pre-eircom web hosting solutions dating back to 1998. At that time it was a 2 page site and very basic. Over the next 6 years it grew and I eventually hosted it on my shanemcdonald.org server with the Queen subdomain. By 2008, the queen site was getting about 500 hits per day and was growing. I even got the attention of one of the Queen roadies, Peter Since, who asked me to review his book. I had a very enjoyable few weeks emailing Peter about his experiences with Freddie and Queen.

Since 2011 the site had not been as regularly updated as I would have wished. Also with the advent of the Google mobile friendly SEO penalties, the traffic on the site was decreasing. So earlier this year I made the decision to review the content on shanemcdonald.org and move everything to a distinctly Irish .ie domain. First the blog and main site (which you are currently reading) and next the Queen site which migrated fully last Saturday evening at 11pm.

What’s on Shane’s Queen Site?

The Queen website started life as a home for the chords and tab which I transcribed by hand. I found that many of the books you bought were incorrect or used very general chords – listing an F where an Fsus4 was the actual chord etc. Since then the site has included discographies, books and book reviews, information about the band, polls, and a few other areas of interest to any Queen fan. I intend to update a few sections before the end of the year and I may add a few new sections in 2017 including a ‘Learn to Play Queen’ section where I will upload videos of how to play certain Queen songs….

If you want to take a look, the address is www.shanemcdonald.ie/queen 

Enjoy !

Doctor Strange – Movie Review

Doctor Strange – Movie Review

Doctor Strange – Synopsis

Dr. Stephen Strange’s (Benedict Cumberbatch) life changes after a car accident robs him of the use of his hands. When traditional medicine fails him, he looks for healing, and hope, in a mysterious enclave. He quickly learns that the enclave is at the front line of a battle against unseen dark forces bent on destroying reality. Before long, Strange is forced to choose between his life of fortune and status or leave it all behind to defend the world as the most powerful sorcerer in existence.

Doctor Strange – Review

For me, I had never heard of Doctor Strange. I don’t know much about the DC Comics world, and movies such as Batman Vs Superman don’t interest me at all. However, I loved films like Iron Man and the original Spiderman films of the early 2000s but I never knew Doctor Strange was a Marvel superhero.

From the offset, Doctor Strange is all action. Dr. Stephen Strange has it all, cool apartment and an even cooler car. Stephen Strange, played by Benedict Cumberbatch, loses everything and seeks restoration of what his life was. He tries to find the Ancient One, portrayed by the excellent Tilda Swinton, who lives in Kathmandu. Being very skeptical from the start and a tad egocentric, Doctor Stephen Strange seems an unlikely superhero. He doesn’t believe anything but is soon convinced.

You will see early on , that the special effects are amazing. You should see this on as big a screen as you can find for the best effect.The movie includes everything from astral projections to architecture and mirrors which defy understanding. This movie will get your brain reevaluating the reality you see on screen and is reminiscent of the movie Inception.

The storyline is based on the fight between good and evil, between the Ancient one and a rogue disciple called Kaecilius, played by Mads Mikkelsen. Kaecilius steals a page from a sacred book and attempts to unleash the dark forces on the earth. At this point Doctor Strange comes to save the day – along with his very humorous cloak (which at one point uses a mans head like the whomping willow from Harry Potter for a but of comic relief).

Can Doctor Strange defeat Kaecilius? Will the Dark Forces engulf the earth? All will be revealed if you watch the movie, and I’m glad I did! It’s a highly entertaining movie and I thought the casting of Benedict Cumberbatch was a good one. Tilda Swinton is the perfect Guru, as she looks and sounds the part. It is highly entertaining and the special effects are astounding, adding to a decent story not trying to compensate for the lack of one.

There are certain to be more from Doctor Strange and I’ll be awaiting the return.

Overall Rating

  • Overall Score 88%

Official Trailer

Littlewoods Ireland Christmas Commercial

Littlewoods Ireland Christmas Commercial

Normally, the first Christmas commercial I see comes with a cry of ‘No, its far too early for this’. But this year, the first Christmas commercial I saw was for Littlewoods Ireland and I actually liked it.

Now, part of the reason why I liked it was because they used the Queen song, “Those were the Days of Our Lives”. The song was written by Roger Taylor about his kids and it was on Queen’s album Innuendo. It’s a very emotive song and therefore fits perfectly, as it is all about looking back. (As an aside, the video for that song was the last time Freddie Mercury was on camera, and today 24th Nov is the anniversary of his death).

Anyway, I really liked this commercial because it focused on the real joys of Christmas. The soft lighting, cheeky grins from kids stealing chocolate, everyone decorating the Christmas tree, putting out mince pies for Santa and of course the excitement coming down the stairs on Christmas morning. There is also a flashback moment when mum and dad are seen as kids. The tagline ‘You never forget how it feels…. to be a child at Christmas’.

I know John Lewis every year has a great Christmas commercial, this year’s dog is no exception. But I think Littlewoods Christmas commercial has given them a run for their money,

Take a look at the commercial below. What do you think?

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Movie Review

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Movie Review

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is set in 1926, location New York city. Newt Scamander played by Eddie Redmayne, has just completed a worldwide expedition in order to find and document Fantastic Beasts. As he arrives in New York he runs into a No-Maj (the American for Muggle) called Jacob. This spells disaster as the magical case full of Fantastic Beasts is opened and some escape. The fact that these creatures wanter the No-Maj world could spell trouble for both the wizarding and No-Maj worlds.

Fantastic Beasts – Review

The first think to be impressed with is the recreation of New York in 1926. If you thought the recreation in the movie Brooklyn was good then you have to see this.

The film starts with how New Scamander loses the case full of Fantastic Beasts and magical creatures. Its a bit slapstick but a good watch. There is a lot of setting up in this film, as there are 4 or 5 more movies in the franchise to follow. A lot of what you see is educating you so you can follow the future films. Basically, as we know from Harry Potter there are wizards and non-wizards… Wizards and Muggles (or No Maj in the USA). The 2 worlds don’t know of each other and thats the way it should be. However, when the magical creatures escape from the case these worlds collide.

The chase is now on to retrieve the beasts and get everything back in order. However there is a dark undercurrent as a spectral type of dark energy is ripping up the streets and killing. What can be done? Can they recover the beasts in time and revert things to normal?

Overall it is a really good watch. There are very few low points in the film, you are entertained throughout. However, that being said, for a lot of the film I couldn’t understand Eddie Redmaynes words. It looked as if he had a speech impediment or something. I can’t understand why this was, or what direction was given when portraying the character. The No_maj, Jacob, is very likeable and I hope he returns in future films.

The creatures are amazing and there are some great visual effects as you would expect from a Harry Potter sub-franchise. Well worth going to, keep the ears pinned for what Newt is saying and you will be ok.

Overall Review Score

  • Overall Review Score 85%
Arrival – Movie Review

Arrival – Movie Review

Arrival – Synopsys

When 12 gigantic pod-like spacecraft land in 12 locations around the world, panic takes hold … ‘Arrival’. Linguistics professor Louise Banks (played by Amy Adams) is called in to lead a team of investigators. Everyone wants to find out what the aliens want and why they are here. The world is heading for global war, and Banks and her team race against time to decipher the language. They must find a way to communicate with the extraterrestrial visitors and ease tensions. Can she unravel the mystery of their reason for being here in time?

Review

The film starts with Amy Adams playing a lecturer, her life seems ordinary until she sees why her lecture hall is empty. All the students are watching as gigantic pods land on earth. She is quickly sought by the authorities who know that her skill in linguistics can help translate the alien language.

The visuals in Arrival are stunning, wide vistas with the pods centre stage. The visual effects are also quite surreal with everything from anti-gravity to amazing looking aliens. The storyline of Arrival will keep you transfixed to the screen. The story flips around quite a bit, so don’t go off for popcorn during the movie. It is actually adapted from a short story called ‘Story of your life’ by Ted Chiang. Arrival is a sci-fi film which does not fit the usual model of ‘aliens arrive, aliens attack, we win’. The plot is multifaceted and Amy Adams does a great job in the role, alongside Jeremy Renner. There are a few areas of the plot which have a few holes, especially around how security on the site could be lapse on a few occasions but overall Arrival is an outstanding film.

I don’t want to give away any spoilers but I would say that you will walk away from this film with an air of contentment. Content in the fact that you have witnessed a great film. I loved this film, much better than Nocturnal Animals which Amy Adams also stars in. I think this is a tip for Oscar nomination and also some success.

You will enjoy Arrival, and you should see it on as big a screen as you can !

  • Overall Score 96%
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