Thursday, October 29, 2015

Movie Review: Goosebumps

Not going to lie, I expected Goosebumps to be very generic and annoying, but while parts of it was just that, I still found the movie to be somewhat entertaining. The story was obviously kept deliberately as simple as possible - maybe to make it perfectly watchable for the more younger kids - but the execution wasn't too cheeky or immature. It still had some semblance of depth and the silliness was brilliantly masked by the manic fun and high energy of the whole film. The pacing was a little inconsistent though, while the acting was mostly fine with Jack Black thankfully not being too obnoxious and the visual effects were actually not bad - I braced for something of a hot mess given the range of monsters, ghouls and whatnot. Ultimately, if you're in the mood for a switch-off-your-brain fantasy romp, then Goosebumps is not a terrible choice. 7

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Voice 9: The Knockouts Part 2

Sad. I was really hoping that the Knockouts will end this week - I know, it started just yesterday, but a man can dream no? - so that we can fast forward to the Playoffs. Tonight, we saw three (3) battles in a course of one hour and I was bored. Yes, there were a couple of good performances, but why am I getting so uninterested with the show this season. Was it the talent? Gwen Stefani? or Adam Levine and his bald head? Haha.

On with the show!

The Voice 9: The Knockouts Part 1

As you know by now, I always skip the Battle Rounds as I don't find them interesting - for the most part - so the usual The Voice fix on this blog continues with The Knockouts. I must say, there were a couple of perceived front runners that got cut this early mostly on some questionable song choices. Somehow, I understood the coaches' decisions, but that makes for a rather underwhelming crop of talents.

On with the show!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

X Factor Australia 7: Top 7

And suddenly, they're down to 7. It was that fast! This week, they all tackled "Trailblazers", which basically means whatever song they want because I could probably think of something just to fit the artist to the theme. Haha. Bu seriously, this was a pretty solid week. No showstoppers, but no train wrecks as well. Hoping for the best result this week.

On with the show!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

WANTED: Reality Singing Show Panel

As early as now, DAM NATION is already looking for people who are willing to be part of this year's Reality Singing Shows Panel/Jury. You know, the Olympics of Singing Competition, which will be published before the year ends.

In 2013, the list was just purely from the subjective ears of DAM NATION. The blog then expanded things in 2014 and recruited six (6) reality singing show junkies across different countries to come up with a definitive list.

This year, we're upping the ante and giving more slots to more people. The reality singing shows will also not only focus on American Idol and The X Factor and The Voice franchises on United States, Australia, and United Kingdom. But we're expanding the selection of performances from the editions in Poland, Thailand, France, Vietnam, China, Ireland and more.

So yes, someone like Kieran McKillop of The Voice Ireland or Beau Monga of The X Factor New Zealand or Emilie Esther form The X Factor Denmark can be part of the list if there are enough votes from the panel that will be made.


- As soon as The X Factor UK wraps up - this marks the end of the Reality Singing Shows season - I will be sending a link to the jury/panel member where they can download and watch the final list of performances eligible for ranking. Yes, the shortlist will be decided by DAM NATION.

- There will also be a file provided where they can rank the performances with 1 being the best.

- This file should then be sent to for tallying as soon as done.

- The results will be posted right before the year ends and the final tally will be disclosed.

- That's it!

Reality Singing Shows: 25 Best Performances of 2014
Reality Singing Shows: 25 Best Performances of 2013

Interested Reality Singing Show Junkies? Email us at or DM at the official DAM NATION facebook page or tweet us at @damthenation.

Let's make this interactive!

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

DAM NATION: October 2015 Playlist

There's just way too many good songs recently that I have enough for the next two months! It's crazy! I tried to narrow it down to 15 - plus, a bonus track - and here you have another list of 15 songs that I (personally) fancy, that are already doing good on it's own and maybe some new singles from different artists that will probably - or maybe not - be hits in the next coming weeks in whatever format.


1 Second Hand Heart Ben Haenow (ft. Kelly Clarkson)
2 Stressed Out twenty one pilots
3 Ex's & Oh's Elle King
4 Writings On The Wall Sam Smith
5 Let It Go James Bay
6 Confident Demi Lovato
7 Counting On Love Matt McAndrews
8 Kiss Me Quick Nathan Sykes
9 Hotline Bling Drake
10 Magnets Disclosure (ft. Lorde)
11 Runnin' (Lose It All) Naughty Boy (ft. Beyonce)
12 Infinity One Direction
13 Another Lonely Night Adam Lambert
14 On My Mind Ellie Goulding
15 Same Old Love Selena Gomez
Can't Help Falling In Love Haley Reinhart

Password: Who topped X Factor Australia 7: Top 10 post?

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

X Factor Australia 7: Top 8

I seriously cringed at the theme when I learned about it last week, but there were some pretty outstanding performances in here. I mean, the usual suspects were still good, a couple of decent performances and some shockingly fantastic ones. Just when I thought this season's becoming a dud, they pulled something like this. Very nice.

On with the show!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

X Factor Australia 7: Top 10

It's official Dannii Minogue is probably the worst judge/coach on any X Factor show EVER! Yes, even worse than Nicole Scherzinger and Redfoo combined. I don't know. She picks the strangest song choices for her artists as if she doesn't know what to do with them. Sigh. Good thing, there were a couple of bright lights who managed to keep the season afloat of total garbage. 

On with the show!

Monday, October 12, 2015

X Factor UK 12: The 6 Chair Challenge #Groups

I suppose this was just half of the groups, but they showed it anyway. So far, the groups managed to deliver some interesting performances. They weren't perfect, but I see two potential pop groups in the making here. Maybe another Little Mix or JLS?

Note: I will update this post next week. 

On with the show!

X Factor UK 12: The 6 Chair Challenge #Boys

What an awful group! I've been following UK's X Factor for a couple of years now, but I've never seen such a lackluster set of talent in a single category. Sure, there were a couple of people that could be good if mentored correctly, but what I witnessed in this episode was almost appalling. Throughout the whole episode, I was either bored, annoyed, or angry. Haha.

On with the show!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Movie Review: Pan

While Pan wasn't entirely terrible, the film just fell resoundingly flat. I don't know. The visuals were awesomely attractive and used well to great effect, but the incredibly sleek presentation of the film was glaringly weighed down by some weak writing, thin plot, and slightly disjointed performances. Sure, Levi Miller was consistently good as the lead, but he cannot singlehandedly carry a film. Rooney Mara was fine and so was Garrett Hedlund, but Hugh Jackman was a clear miscast. The pacing was also quite problematic. I thought some of the slow moving scenes needed to be either truncated or edited to tighten up. Ultimately, Pan was pretty much okay, but never really reached any higher than that. It will delight it's targeted fanbase - the kids - but as for me, I enjoyed it for the vibrant visuals, but not really much more. 6

Friday, October 9, 2015

Movie Review: Etiquette For Mistresses

Sure, Etiquette for Mistresses was yet another film about, well, mistresses, but there's something to be said about how the film boldly tackled the other side of the spectrum. It was an interesting look - regardless if the movie was meant to glorify mistresses or not - and I thought the narrative was more introspective than I expected, complex, and real. However, everything went annoyingly downhill towards the end when the film decided that it was in their best interest to shove a plot device that was ridiculously contrived. It felt as if they just didn't know how to end it. On a technical standpoint, it was fairly decent. Some shots were a pleasant surprise - the confrontation scene especially - but the editing felt choppy and rushed. The acting performances, for the most part, was also pretty acceptable - Claudine Barreto was a total scene stealer and while Iza Calzado was terribly underused, she had her moments. Kris Aquino can't act to save her life though. Etiquette for Mistresses was heavily flawed, but strangely compelling. 6

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The Voice 9: Blind Auditions Part 5

So they save the best for last no? I've completely underwhelmed with the talent this season so far, but this episode gave glimmers of hope. Sure, a couple of them were still obvious cannon fodders, but there were a good number of people who could be a serious contender.

Oh, and Adam has a pretty solid team.

On with the show!

Monday, October 5, 2015

X Factor Australia 7: Top 11

After being underwhelmed last week - maybe it were the song choices? - a couple of artists stepped up to the plate and delivered astonishing performances and possibly some of the best this season. Sure, there were a couple of train wrecks here and there, but for the most part, I was excited for the rest of the season. If they will be playing in the same level as this week, I'm confident that we're in for a good season.

On with the show!

X Factor UK 12: The 6 Chair Challenge #Girls

This part of the show has always been brutal to the contestants and even to the coaches. It was hard to watch. Really. That said, it's good television and it's everything that matters to these producers. So, I digress.

As for the talent, I'm not so sure. I thought this category was the strongest, but after watching all of them - and eventually the Final 6 - I have my own reservations now. I hope they prove me wrong moving forward.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Movie Review: The Martian

Emotional. Riveting. Exquisite. The Martian was, hands down, one of the best movies of the year. Sure, the story was simply about human survival on Mars, but with Ridley Scott's masterful direction and some technical brilliance, everything was just exceptional. The script was solid, there was a surprisingly consistent humor that balanced the movie perfectly well, the visual effects were no less than spectacular and highly enthralling, and the camera work and editing was fluid and natural to the point that it consumed me. The acting performances were also pretty outstanding from Jessica Chastain to Kristen Wiig to Jeff Daniels. It was Matt Damons' impeccable performance though that elevated the film into something else. He easily got to me; I sympathized with him, worry for him, and cheered for his survival. The Martian was completely immersive and compelling and there's something wonderfully optimistic about the film. Move over, Mad Max: Fury Road and Inside Out! There's another contender this year. 9.5

Movie Review: Hotel Transylvania 2

Hotel Transylvania 2 was a decent animation film. As an adult, the humor, I thought, was a hit and miss - too many slapstick moments and unnecessary forced jokes - the story was just too cliched and overused, and there was really nothing to write home about. That being said, this was essentially a kids' movie and by that criterion, I thought it was quite effective. The visuals were almost faultless, the character designs were good, the action sequences were harmless fun, and the voice acting were awesome. If you enjoyed the first one, then Hotel Transylvania 2 is likely your much-needed animation fix. Personally though, it left no lasting impression. It was adequate, but it would be overstating the case to make it out to be much more than that. 6

DAM NATION: October 2015 Throwback Playlist

Here's the latest set of throwback tunes that will make you reminisce of those good old days. I made sure that there's variety in this compilation. Again, make sure to dim the lights and crank up this playlist.


1 All The Love In The World The Corrs
2 Tearin' Up My Heart *NSYNC
3 This Is How We Do It Montell Jordan
4 Honey Mariah Carey
5 Rock DJ Robbie Williams
6 1,2 Step Ciara (ft. Missy Elliott)
7 Dirrty Christina Aguilera
8 Spice Up Your Life Spice Girls
9 All The Things She Said t.A.T.u.
10 With Arms Wide Open Creed
11 White Flag Dido
12 Invisible Man 98 Degrees
13 If You're Gone Matchbox 20
13 My Happy Ending Avril Lavigne
15 What's Up 4 Non Blondes

Password: Who ranked 3rd in X Factor Australia 7: Top 12?

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Voice 9: Blind Auditions Part 4

Hmm. Not sure what's up with The Voice this season, but I'm getting completely underwhelmed. Yes, there were a couple of good artists here and there, but that's about it. Nothing screams viable popstar in the making. I don't know. I'm hoping it's the just the first round. Maybe the gimmick of the swiveling chair is now wearing of no?

On with the show!
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