All posts tagged features

5 Most Overrated Songs By Decade

Published August 6, 2014 by gossipzoo

Blink 182 All The Small Things

Throughout the years, I’ve often wondered what exactly makes a song a hit-and wondered even greater why certain songs are hits in the first place. I think I should qualify what I mean by “overrated.” None of the songs on this list are “bad” per se, but I felt they didn’t deserve the lavish praise heaped on them after their recording nor the endless plays on the radio.

In other words, there are plenty of worse songs out there, but none of them “earned” the success or were played to death like these five (in chronological order by decade):

Most Overrated Song Of The ’60s: “My Way” – Frank Sinatra

Right away, this selection is going to turn a lot of people off, simply because it’s so cherished, but that’s precisely my point. This song is not only a “classic,” it’s considered Sinatra’s defining standard, but have you ever sat down and really listened to it? The melody is slow, plodding, and predictable (it’s really just a long crescendo), and it was based on an even older French tune.

The lyrics aren’t very admirable either. Frank brags about how he did everything his way, and we should all learn to deal with that. Well, good for him. Being selfish and stubborn isn’t something to croon about. This Paul Anka-penned piece should have been one of Sinatra’s B-sides, not the one by which all his other hits are judged.

I’d rather hear “Come Fly Away” or “New York, New York” any day.

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5 Reasons The Fast And The Furious Franchise Is So Successful

Published August 5, 2014 by gossipzoo


If you had told me 12 years ago that a film about illegal street racing, starring Paul Walker and Vin Diesel, would evolve into Universal’s biggest film franchise of all time, I would think you were nuts. Despite mixed reviews from critics (the film currently stands at 53% on Rotten Tomatoes), it made $207 million at the box office and received five sequels (with another currently in production). Vin Diesel has stated that another trilogy is in the works (which will comprise of Fast 7, 8, and 9) and Dwayne Johnson has hinted at the possibility of a spin-off film featuring his character.

The series is, without a doubt, nothing more than good ol’ fashioned popcorn movie fun, and is generally considered a guilty pleasure from audiences. However, unlike other seemingly shallow, action-oriented and over indulgent blockbusters, the Fast and Furious films don’t seem to generate negative responses and get more popular with each installment. I’ve compiled a list of 5 reasons why the franchise has stood the test of time, continually thrilling audiences and critics alike and drawing moviegoers to the multiplex year after year…

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3 Italian Clubs Ready To Fight For European Glory Again

Published August 5, 2014 by gossipzoo

Marek Hamsik1

For some years now, Italian football has been in the wilderness. Despite Inter Milan being crowned champions of Europe in 2010, Italian clubs have struggled to make their mark in Europe’s premier club competition.

Such has been their demise on the European stage that Serie A has lost one of its 4 places in the competition, with now only 2 sides qualifying automatically and the other having to navigate the tricky qualifying round.

However, match day 1 of the Champions League showed us that Italian football is slowly on the rise again. Napoli and AC Milan picked up opening day wins, while Juventus were held to a draw by the resilient Copenhagen.

The results will no doubt fill Serie A fans with a renewed sense of optimism going into this year’s Champions League, something which has been lacking in previous seasons.

In this feature WhatCulture takes a look at Serie A’s 3 European clubs and assess what we can expect from them in this season’s Champions League.

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10 Pop Culture Mayors Who Should Be The Next Mayor Of New York City

Published August 4, 2014 by gossipzoo


New York City recently hosted primaries for the upcoming Mayoral election, the first step in determining who will be the next Mayor of the greatest city in the world (take that Spokane, Washington!).

Being the Mayor of the Five Boroughs is a pretty big deal. The job includes regulating soda pop consumption, occasionally appearing on Saturday Night live, wearing a sash, and fighting hurricanes with one’s bare hands. Sometimes the Mayor even has to speak Spanish.

It’s not a job for the feint of heart. Even though it’s a municipal job, the Mayor of New York City is a national, even global figure. There were a whole lot of names in the big mayoral top hat, ranging from City Councilmen, Comptrollers, The Chairman of the MTA, and the one, the only, the aptly named Anthony “Carlos Danger” Weiner.

Other than the guy with the famous penis, I wasn’t too familiar with a lot of the candidates. Now that Joe Lhota and Bill de Blasio have emerged as each party’s respective nominees, I’m a little flummoxed as to who I should be casting my ballot for, being a newly registered voter in Manhattan. In fact, other than that fake job description I made up above, I really have no idea what the Mayor does. I guess they’re like the president of town?

Like most things in the world, pretty much all of my knowledge is based off of things that I’ve seen in movies and on television. So for the November 5th election, I’ll be looking for the qualities found in pop culture’s greatest Mayors.

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SimCity Finally Comes Out On Mac But Does Anybody Care?

Published August 3, 2014 by gossipzoo


SimCity is finally out on Mac and you know what, at the time of writing, it’s been out for a little while. I was waiting for SimCity on Mac for a long time, but I just missed the whole release date in the sea of more tangible, exciting and inevitable game releases.

SimCity was finally released on Mac on 29th August 2013, after nearly a year of constant delays and botched deadlines. SimCity has been on PC for well over a year and while I can appreciate that the Mac platform is not the primarily gaming platform for home computers, I can’t help but feel a little bit sore after EA’s Mac release. Of course, in my eyes SimCity has suffered the ultimate demise; I quite simply forgot it existed.

Now, I know what you are probably thinking, the Mac isn’t necessarily for gaming (at least not compared to PC) and you shouldn’t expect any big releases to release at the same time, if at all. But this is not why I am annoyed about SimCity. I am annoyed because EA promised something, and they didn’t deliver. They didn’t even deliver the second time. As I looked for new info on the Mac version, I constantly felt that it was more likely that it would be cancelled, than finally get a real release date.

SimCity Server Failures

I don’t have the exact quote, but EA put the delay of SimCity for Mac down to performance issues stating that they wanted to get it running as best as possible. Well apparently, there are reports that the Mac release has been just as troublesome as the PC one. Yes, the PC release is well-documented as one of the worst video game releases of recent memory. Servers didn’t work, systems didn’t run, always-online was tarnished.

But somehow I still believed in the game. SimCity is a wonderful series, a deeply intricate simulation game that balances creativity and strategy. Create what you want, as long as everyone has flushing toilets. The new graphics looked great and fit the style of the series perfectly. The thing is I feel like I really don’t care anymore. Not about SimCity so much as about this game. I remember when SimCity for Mac was coming out in June and I downloaded Origin and set up my account, only to find a few days before release, that it had been delayed till August 29th. That is a good way to sum up the whole sorry mess. Because when I went on to research this article, I found that I had forgot my Origin password. It all seems a lot more trouble than it’s worth.

What do you think about the delayed and then delayed again Mac release of SimCity? Make some noise in the comments below…

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Man City vs Man Utd: Why Yaya Toure Is A Key Player In Derby

Published August 3, 2014 by gossipzoo

Media Image Ltd

Media Image Ltd

Manchester City’s box-to-box midfielder Yaya Toure is widely regarded as one of the side’s most influential players since signing from Catalan giants Barcelona in 2010.

Often known for his rampaging runs through midfield and his casual swagger style of play, Toure has risen to star status during his time in the Premier League. He’s been utilised largely in two positions for the Citizens – as a holding midfielder or a central midfielder given license to roam up the pitch.

This season has once again seen him playing a relinquished role in midfield, positioned in front of the defence as protection. New manager Manuel Pellegrini has used the 30-year old to break up the attacks and move the ball on in a swift fashion, or to set up counter attacks – dribbling the ball out of midfield at a minimum.

When title rivals Manchester United come to town this weekend, the Ivory Coast international will be a key player for the hosts. Yaya Toure has boasted high ball-retention stats early on this season – a 90.8% pass completion, while making an average of 86.8 passes per league game.

Manchester United duo Michael Carrick and Wayne Rooney will have been targeted as the two biggest creative threats to the side, and the pair will need to be kept from picking out passes in the final third whenever possible.

As Rooney can often drop very deep to receive the ball, the job to stop both him and Carrick from playing will be on Yaya Toure, and should he collect the ball after making a challenge or interception, he’ll then be required to launch a counter-attack or to simply play it to an available teammate close-by.

Toure could be a pivotal player for Manchester City this weekend, and he could well be the one who decides which sides come out the victors in the pending clash.

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Ukraine vs England – 5 Key Battles

Published July 21, 2014 by gossipzoo


Tonight, the nation will hold its collective breath as England take on Ukraine in Kiev.

The crunch Group H World Cup qualifier will likely have a deciding say on which side tops the table and makes it through to next summer’s tournament in Brazil.

Both sides go into this encounter in varying moods.

England, despite rolling over Moldova in a 4-0 win at Wembley Stadium last week, had their feelings tempered by the suspension to Danny Welbeck and injury to Daniel Sturridge.

Ukraine meanwhile are flying having battered shoddy San Marino in a thumping 9-0 win, a national record for the Yellow-Blues.

They also have the home advantage and the knowledge that they held tonight’s opponents to a shock 1-1 draw in their own stadium almost a year ago to the day.

Then, Frank Lampard rescued the Lions with an 87th minute penalty, and, with the Chelsea veteran set to make his 100th cap tonight, will he be similarly influential over proceedings?

As with any game, this one will be decided in certain key areas and here, we take a look at the 5 Key Battles that could decide the outcome of this fixture.

Click “Next” to begin.

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8 Great Movies About Film Making All Directors Must See

Published July 20, 2014 by gossipzoo

Lost In La Mancha

The track record for movies about movies is not particularly fantastic, to be frank. The appeal is pretty obvious – if great art comes from passion, it makes sense that a cinematic artist would be inspired when making a movie about movies, right? – But all too often films about films tend to fall into one of two ludicrous extremes, either painting filmmaking as a soul crushing toil in the salt mines, or as a jolly frolic where there’s no pressure and no pain, and inspiration flows from a tap. (Cue laughter from anyone who’s ever tried to make a movie, ever.) No wonder the best movies about film making tend to be documentaries – it’s harder to BS an audience about the process of making films when you’re showing actual footage from a working film set.

All of which is a long winded way of saying that when a film comes out that really captures something about the dynamics of filmmaking, it’s a special thing indeed. Here’s eight films – some documentaries, some fiction, some romanticized, some anything but – that anybody looking to work in the art form should see:

8. The Snowball Effect


OK, to be fair, citing a DVD making of documentary on this list is probably cheating – but honestly, if you’re looking for inspiration as a young filmmaker, what better source? In the past, knowledge about “how movies are made” only came from classic Hollywood films, which by and large offered a ludicrously sanitized fictionalization of the filmmaking process; now anyone with a DVD remote has direct access (sometimes perhaps a little too direct?) to the process by which films are made.

Few filmmakers are more honest and forthright on this score than Kevin Smith. Open and honest about his own failings as a director (“Throw a rock, you’ll hit a better director than me,” he once told a crowd of fans), Smith has also been quite open about the making of his films, with DVD and Blu-ray platters that sometimes seem awfully opulent for movies about a bunch of dudes standing around talking. The Snowball Effect, a documentary about the making of his debut film, Clerks, is probably the finest of these supplements, and honestly might be one of those rare beasts – a documentary about the making of a film that is better than the film itself.

Obviously there’s plenty of wit (vulgar, but still) in The Snowball Effect, plenty of ribbing and joshing and juicy behind the scenes tales; but for any filmmaker, The Snowball Effect is the most valuable form of filmmaking heroin imaginable. If you’ve ever needed the inspiration to get off your ass and just make a movie, then it’s required you see The Snowball Effect, which charts – in granular but fascinating detail – how Smith, a college drop out, pulled together a bunch of his friends, some untried community theater actors and a few buddies from his brief time in film school to make a movie. The film is refreshingly blunt, with most of the participants admitting that they had little or no idea what they were doing, and that the fact that the film turned out watchable was probably a miracle; it’s also inspiring, in that Smith and his rag tag operation seem to prove Quentin Tarantino’s assertion that if you love movies enough, regardless of time or budgetary constraints, you will probably make a good one.

The post 8 Great Movies About Film Making All Directors Must See appeared first on WhatCulture!.

Serie A Round-Up: Matchday 2

Published July 6, 2014 by gossipzoo

Napoli 4 2 Chievo

After a thrilling start to Serie A last weekend, the action continued in similar fashion as goals were scored all across the league. 11 goals were scored in the 2 matches on Saturday and there were no goalless draws in the entire weekend.

Napoli picked up their second consecutive victory with a 4-2 win at Chievo. Hamsik gave the visitors the lead but Paloschi equalised 10 minutes later. Callejon put Napoli ahead again but Paloschi scored his second of the game to send the sides into the interval on level terms. In the second-half, Hamsik got his second of the game to restore Napoli’s lead before Gonzalo Higuain scored his first Serie A goal to secure the points.

Also on Saturday, Juventus continued their 100% start with a 4-1 victory against Lazio. Vidal fired Juventus into a 2 goal lead with a brace before Miroslav Klose pulled one back for Lazio. Vucinic restored Juve’s advantage 4 minutes after the interval and 10 minutes from time Carlos Tevez was on target to score his first goal for the side from Turin.

Roma rose to the top of Serie A with a 3-0 victory against Verona. An own-goal from Cacciatore gave Roma the lead and Pjanic extended the advantage with a delightful long-range chip. Ljajic made it 3 after 66 minutes with his strike from range.

AC Milan achieved their first win of the season with a 3-1 victory at the San Siro against Cagliari. Robinho gave the hosts an early lead and Mexes put Milan 2-0 up on the half hour mark. Sau pulled one back for Cagliari before half-time but in the second-half Mario Balotelli ensured that there would be no surprises when he restored AC Milan’s 2 goal lead.

Inter Milan got their second successive win with a 3-0 victory away against Catania. Palacio gave Inter the lead after 19 minutes and it was the difference at half-time. After the interval, goals from Nagatomo and Alvarez meant that the 3 points travelled back to Milan.

Genoa lost 5-2 at home to Fiorentina, ensuring the home side lost their second match on the trot and the visitors won to maintain their 100% record this season. Aquilani gave Fiorentina the lead after just 10 minutes and 4 minutes later Rossi doubled the visitors advantage. Mario Gomez scored to send the sides into half-time with a 3 goal difference but after the interval Gilardino reduced the deficit. It wasn’t for long though as just a minute later Rossi struck with his second of the game. Lodi scored from the penalty spot to pull one back for the hosts but Mario Gomez scored his second of the game from the penalty spot in the 90th minute.

Udinese secured their first win of the season with a 3-1 victory against Parma. Agyemang-Badu put the hosts ahead after 11 minutes and that single goal was the difference at half-time. With 18 minutes remaining, Heurtaux doubled Udinese’s advantage but 10 minutes later Cassano pulled Parma back into the game. Muriel scored a late penalty to ensure there would be no comeback.

Elsewhere, goals from Stendardo and Lucchini gave Atalanta a 2-0 victory against Torino and Livorno won 4-1 away against Sassuolo. Greco and Paulinho were on target for Livorno while Emeghara secured a brace. Zaza scored for Sassuolo.

In the other match in Serie A, Bologna drew 2-2 with Sampdoria. Eder gave Sampdoria the lead but Moscardelli equalised before half-time. Kone then gave Bologna the lead after the interval but 19 minutes from time Gabbiadini scored to ensure the points would have to be shared this time around.

The post Serie A Round-Up: Matchday 2 appeared first on WhatCulture!.

Man Utd Transfers: 7 Deals To Save David Moyes’ Disastrous Window

Published July 5, 2014 by gossipzoo

Leighton Baines 2

Manchester United have not enjoyed the best transfer window so far: they have been forced to concede defeat on a number of high profile targets, including Gareth Bale who was finally unveiled as a Real Madrid player today, to the collected hysteria of his new fans.

United might face problems if they are to ramp up their activity today, ahead of tonight’s 11pm deadline, especially with an underwhelming start to the season, and the continued problem of the perceived difficulty of competing with London clubs, but United fans have urged their new manager to show more ambition and make a marquee signing.

What is clear, despite those potential obstacles, is that David Moyes needs a big transfer window to appease those fans, who have seen all of their major rivals improving squads, and who were not universally enamoured by his appointment. One high-profile fan has offered his own opinion on what Moyes needs to do today, with a creative midfielder at the top of the bill:

It’s important to remember that United have form of making big signings on the last day of the window, with both Wayne Rooney and Dimitar Berbatov signing for big money in the last hours. So fans perhaps shouldn’t write off their club just yet.

Honourable Mention

Mesut Ozil

Mesut Ozil

It seems that long-term rivals Arsenal are about to complete a deal to bring in German international Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid, after the Spanish side signed long-term United target Gareth Bale, but with reports emerging that United made an enquiry for the German, it seems the Champions might have missed a major opportunity.

Though United sources have subsequently denied those reports, that still begs the question of why United were not in the running for Ozil, who would represent a huge boost to Moyes’ squad. If the side want to express their ambitions, to allay fan fears that they will be left behind, Ozil would have been the perfect option, and they could have scored the extra bonus of pushing Arsene Wenger’s nose out of joint in the process.

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