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Real Bosses are ‘UBER’-Smart


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We already know what you’re all thinking: ‘stop the bus, C’ette Culture said what!’.

 

Let’s get things straight from the top- we are talking about real bosses. So before you get things mixed-up, C’ette Culture is not talking about project managers, beloved department managers or supervisors. We’re not even talking about those with degrees or PHDs from the prehistoric ivy league institutions. We are talking about the original MVPs before the company had MVPs; you know, the people that laid the very first bricks to the empire before the high rise office buildings shot up. Those who earned that corner office bigger than your studio apartment, with the boardroom seat within walking distance. We are talking about those who nurtured that ‘idea-baby’ into a living breathing dynasty: yeah, that boss! Those visionaries that turn their passion and opportunities into profit, with a hunger to leave their own imprint on history.

 

ALL HAIL UBER

If ever there were a company that embodied the the mentality of a ‘real boss’ it would most definitely be the travel-on-demand tech phenomenon: UBER. Launched in California in 2009 with the dream of having a continuous and trackable cab service that is ready exactly when we are, at any time of the day via a simple mobile app. This business model seems quite logical to today’s consumer but this new commonplace practice has only really revolutionised the commuter experience in the last decade. The capitalisation of this gap in the marketplace is what has granted the company a powerful presence in over 479 global cities, in over eighty countries- generating the tech service firm a stock market valuation in the region of $70 Billion.

And yes, we do acknowledge that the company has been embroiled in legal issues with its own drivers in the last few years, and the group will not appear on the Christmas gift lists of certain nations like France, Germany or China, heck the city of London is trying to put the young millennial company in time-out. Yet it is still the cool kid on the block that is kicking economic butt and taking names wherever it goes globally.

 

REAL BOSSES OFFICE PIC

DI-VER-SI-FI-CA-TION : The Sound of Progression

Firstly, let’s remember that Uber is a tech company before anything else. Primarily it provides a monitored cab service to its fans  user base to enhance  the efficiency, security and convenience in the commuter experience. Like UBER, real bosses know that it’s all about finding, creating or simplifying a product/service that meets the needs of the people, gives the brand and product something of its own unique identity amongst the crowd, or simply creating something completely new altogether. Once established real bosses try and find new ways to keep their customers hooked into their community by creating, or further developing relevant product ranges and brand extensions that their desired audience also identifies as useful; efficient; easier; better.

Exploring options focused on adding or improving value, particular qualities and efficiency to its  services, global players like UBER learn to experiment further afield and tap into different, more lucrative pastures for future payoffs- creating new fans and customers in the process. For UBER these other offerings include things like:

 

*UBER RUSH– The on-demand courier service. Secure a messenger to your location, give delivery instructions and then hand over your package to be delivered by the messenger in record timing (Ps. only reasonably sized items- so no Baby Grand Pianos for delivery guys).

*UBER EATS– Another on-demand take away service that shows the status of an UBER users food order from listed restaurants on the app to their doorstep (have order within 30 minutes or money off the next order). With no need to tip you can pay for the service via your existing UBER account. It’s already in 16 major global cities including London, Paris, Singapore, San Francisco, and Toronto. Basically think of any major city in the world (tic-toc, tic-toc) and Uber EATS is probably there already.

*‘XCHANGE LEASING’ (a.k.a. UberBank). Already working with paypal on taxi app payments (2013), accepting payments by American Express reward points (2014), teaming up with Zopa on car loans for drivers in the far east , and managing cash payments in India since 2015- some financial eyebrows have been both raised and furrowed. To add more fuel to the fire UBER has started issuing bank loans solely for vehicle purchase in Vietnam, Japan and others (2016) in partnership with the Toyota Motor corporation. UBER’s fans, global markets and banks are waiting (and some dreading) for the day when the company officially admits that it wants to become its own Bank too.

*OTTO – self Driving cars. Pretty self explanatory we know, and to nobody’s surprise UBER has wasted little time in the driverless car race and has been testing its own automated cars in Pittsburgh, USA and north of the boarder. The test cars have been fitted with radar technology, environmental sensors, hi-resolution cameras, laser scanners and a ‘driver’s seat’ analytics system as part of its armoury. These UBER cars are currently scaling city streets and learning major city maps as we speak. UBER’s artificial intelligence is undoubtedly going places.

 

REAL BOSSES OFFICE LEADERS PIC

BOSSES WITH ‘UBER’-SMART’S

These are some of the guys and gals who are building empires right under our noses, with respective portfolios spanning from music and entertainment, to tech, venture capital and wealth management, all the way to moon. Yes, you read it right- the moon!

 

Sean ‘Jay Z’ Carter (he’s more than a hustler)

Estimated net worth: $810 Million

In his early years Mr Carter used his quick wit, sharp networking  and negotiation skills in the streets of New York before entering the music world. Once he asserted his dominance in the industry through his very own record label, he started venturing early into the world of movie production, boutique alcohol brands and fashion- so it wasn’t a hard-knock life after all!  The Bruce Wayne of the music industry has many fingers firmly placed in pies that we can not even begin to fathom. This icon is more than an artist- he’s a well informed, well-skilled serial owner of whatever it is he chooses to invest in. So our clear response to his jazzy classic ‘Can I Live’, from the multi-platinum debut album ‘Reasonable Doubt’ is: yes Mr Carter, you can…a whole heck of a lot!

  • Industries: Music, Television and Film, Advertising, Fashion, Food and Beverage, Sports Management, Technology, Investments and other consultancy

  • Brands: RocNation group of brands, 40/40 Club(s),Tidal Music,Translation Media Agency, Arsenal F.C., Brooklyn Nets (…and the list literally goes on. No, seriously!).

 

Ashton Kutcher (his business acumen can’t be Punk’d)

Estimated net worth: $200 Million- $250 Million

Contrary to popular belief models are more than just pretty faces, or materialistic air-heads. Kutcher, a former runway model, is well known in A-list circles to have a surprisingly high IQ and futurist mindset. Originally studying to be a Biochemical engineer in college (i know, right ?) he took on modelling as one of his many odd jobs to pay the bills at the time. His big break came when he landed his role as Kelso on hit TV series ‘That 70’s Show’, and spun off the mischievous nature of his character’s role on the US sitcom into his own comedic reality show ‘Punk’d’ (which he directed and produced in partnership with MTV). The opportunities he created for himself and his staff by directing and producing projects for mainstream TV stations and global movie production studios has generated enough wealth for him to fund, invest and capitalise on his other passion: technology (via his venture capital group ‘A-Grade Investments). Kutcher has part ownership in major tech companies used by the #Cultured, including brands and services like Skype, FourSquare and many many others. So it was only fitting that he was cast to play Apple’s founder in his most recent movie ironically called ‘Jobs’- something Kutcher will probably never need again.

  • Industries: Fashion, Television and Film, Technology, Venture capital and Investments

  • Brands: Katalyst Films, Katalyst Media, A-Grade Investments, Sound Ventures

 

 

Jennifer Lopez (Her love may not cost a thing- but her initials do!)

Estimated net worth: $360 Million

Beginning her career as a back up dancer for pop artists J.Lo kept herself busy and built up her name and brand as a performer to the point that she started touring the States and Europe with Janet Jackson. Lopez’s big break came from the silver screen in the movie ‘Selena’ where she starred in the biographical piece on late Latin music legend and songstress. The movie was a box office hit and catapulted Jennifer from the background to the forefront in Hollywood and Latin-American media. Her biggest fan came in the form of Sony Music exec Tommy Mattola, who gave Lopez her first record deal (in which she released the globally charted top 10 hit single ‘Waiting for Tonight’ on her first studio album).

Known as the hardest working woman in the business by this stage (due to her heavy film and music recording schedules), Lopez understood that she could centralise her brand to her loyal fan-base and community by introducing other offerings and brand extensions through other means: from fashion to fragrances, self-directed and produced films and TV shows, along with a Latino-focused mobile communications empire. With her success and special influence in the Latin community Jenny from the block now commands some of the biggest buck$ not only online and in entertainment, but on Madison Avenue; her initials even have a section of the Hollywood Walk-of-Fame amongst other assets. So we guess she is ‘…gonna be alright’.

  • Industries: Music, Television and Film, Fashion, Telecommunications

  • Brands: J.LO (couture, perfumes and accessories), Nuyorican Productions, Viva Movil

jennifer-lopez-REAL BOSSES ARCTICLES

 

Kevin Hart (laughing all the way to the bank)

Estimated net worth: $120 Million

Hart, a Philadelphia native was born into very humble beginnings in a not so funny set of circumstances. During a spout of odd jobs, including working as a shoe salesman, even training to be a male stripper, Hart took centre stage entering comedy competitions across the east-coast of the States. Funnily enough Kev’s big break came through music mogul and fellow serial entrepreneur Damon Dash under the Rocafella Entertainment brand- casting him in a series of independent movies and cult classics like ‘Paper Soldiers’, along with a cameo on music industry documentary ‘Death of a Dynasty’.

Since the early 2000’s the stars of Tinstletown have shone favourably on Mr Hart and his craft, as he steamrolls through Hollywood slam-dunking one big silver-screen blockbuster after another.This is all while ‘bionic Kev’ manages his fully functional international comedy tours each year; rumour has it that Kevin’s schedule is so hectic and pre-booked that he has a two-year waiting line formed of mainly movie directors and tour bookings (…we’re pencilled in somewhere between- probably and never, in May 2020!).

Not surprisingly that’s not all about Kevin. This Hart has many veins to the money supply and coincidentally his next big focus is now on health and fitness. The star turned athlete is now the newest major powerhouse player  for team Nike- and boy is he proving to be their King of Harts on a social media front. By leveraging his 52 million social media followers to actively engage with him at global fitness events (hosted and part-sponsored by himself and his partners at Nike), he is proactively incorporating this particular sportswear company into his lifestyle essential brand that successfully targets followers, and interactively studies its desired market using its products at events in real time. Every marketer’s day-dream. Even then the madness doesn’t stop with Kevin. Due to the global success of his lifestyle fitness programme it is believed that he has secured, and is personally managing the global brands and contracts of the fitness trainers involved in his Run With Hart company. Gravy-train or what?! With a savvy portfolio like his, he can clearly laugh at all of our pain every single day for the rest of his life. Well done Kev!

  • Industries: Entertainment, Film, Sportswear, Health Nutrition and Fitness

  • Brands: Hartbeat Productions, Hussle Harts footwear (Nike partnership), and Move With Hart promotions

 

 

Jeff Bezos (He roars, and the Amazon Echo’s)

Estimated net worth: $93.1 Billion

The guy who dethroned the great Warren Buffett to the second richest man in America, and the new richest man in the world (according  to analysts at Forbes) is this millenniums man to watch.

After choosing to leave a lofty high-roler banking analyst job just one year earlier, his company- Amazon, was started quietly by Bezos in a Seattle Washington garage in July 1994- a thousand miles north of the newly developing tech mecca of Silicon Valley. Selling all types of books and textbooks with the mantra of ‘Get-big-fast’ he soon started selling toys, tech and even went as far as selling second-hand military tanks. The site was on organic grass roots success due to the fame it received from its  customers and fans by pure word of mouth promotion around its service efficiencies. However, with all its success the company was mainly in debt and close to bankruptcy throughout the 90’s, and most stock markets from Wall Street  to Tokyo actually bet that Bezos and the company would fail. That is until 2002 when Amazon finally posted a profit as a business. The grey cloud over this prime player moved and allowed money to finally grow on Amazon’s tree’s, and the profits to be shared by its shareholders.

With a fresh surplus of cash and a company culture that invests heavily in R&D, Bezos and his rock star company began creating new ways to thank and excite its loyal customers of the weird and wonderful. New offerings such as: Kindle, Prime services, AmazonFresh, Zappos- and many many others were slowly making his company’s services an essential part of the world’s daily living. But typically like any real boss, Bezos has continued to look forward, thinking further afield on how to please his present and unconverted fans. With this in mind his extended industrial pursuits now focuses on the world of travel and the commuter experience. Even though Amazon will give the world driverless cars, drone delivery services and the like, that is not the final end game. Ladies, gentlemen, and the #Cultured please get on your feet and put your hands together for…BLUE…ORIGIN. This is the secret weapon, and love child shared by Amazon and NASA that is rarely ever talked about, or spoken of. It is Blue Origin – the space exploration company for the general public that will cement Bezos as the real ‘Boss’ that did it all- from online, to in store, at the wheel and in space.

  • Industries: E-Commerce, News Media, Aerospace Exploration, Automotive

  • Brands: Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Blue Origin, The Washington Post, Kindle, Zappos

 

So  for the budding entrepreneur in us all, and for the entrepreneurs at other stages in the journey to ‘bossdom’ its fair to say that it takes more than reading books to be in business. There is no real science behind running your own business as no two company’s stories are ever the same, whether it be a coffee shop in a small town or globally floated company on the stock market. But, as a real boss it’s up to you to decide what your company is passionate about or good at, it’s up to you to formulate a business plan towards that dream, its up to you how far your company’s service offering stretches, its up to you to network, and more importantly its up to you to put in the work whether or not people are looking.

Looking at your business, or business plan right now (no matter how big or small) honestly ask yourself these 2 questions:

 

  1. Are these the only customers my business can truly serve?
  2. Am I using my opportunities like a real boss?
Communication, Friends, Friendship, Life, media, movie, movies, relationships, Social, Social Media, Tech, Trending

Emojis: How Many, Is Too Much?


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We all love them, they’re cute and playful… ah heck, there is even a blockbuster movie coming our way to remind us that they rock. Yet, the question has presented itself as to whether it is possible to ever have too many, or too much of those little good things in modern communication. Why? You may ask, well buckle up and let’s go through this digital conundrum together.

So, we all have that one friend- that friend who loves to keep on going both in person and over the phone, but can’t read between the lines- or take a hint to cut the conversation short. These said friends also carry this particular trait into their online presence and messaging platforms. The overkill comes in the form of what we call ‘HYPER-EMOJING‘.  @CetteCulture would define HyperEmojing as:

“A situation in which a message- whether via text, direct message (DM) or email- is over populated with more than 5 emoji icons in one reading.”

You may occasionally receive Hyper-Emoji’ messages from some friends from time to time, but it’s the instances when the same culprits keep on striking (and Mr and Miss Itchy fingers regularly sends us that chapter long text to read to begin with- followed by a herd of emoji’s that can sometimes leave us lost in translation). A message with so many images, it would leave the ancient Egyptians confused.

 

Socially Awkward

Emoji Image arcticle 3- faces

Now some people might be saying “Yeah, so! What’s the problem?”- our response to that part of the world population is: nobody wants to watch a short cartoon after reading your long text, DM or email. Seriously! As the long-suffering recipients of the aesthetically emoji-fied goods we have come to agree with the immortal words of Queen Vic after reading a message from you: “We are not amused”. But because we’ve known you for years pre-Facebook, follow each other on Instagram, probably have to interact with you in person within the week in some social setting, and call you friend(s) we haven’t got the heart to tell you to STOP! Or tell you that that many emotions should only come out in group therapy sessions. So we’re stumped as to how we can tell our friend about their condition without getting the angry or crying emojis in their next message.

 

Digital etiquette

So the question still remains with the pictograms: how many is too much? But we believe that there is an even more fundamental and controversial question to consider over all: Can your message go without it? Has the sender considered the recipients time, vision and data limit- because if the tables were turned would they want to read hieroglyphs from their BFF’s all the time? A little consideration speaks volumes (because you shouldn’t have to mute a friends WhatsApp convo for the sake of your sanity).

We are not a think-tank with special scholastic insight, neither are any of the following the law in any corner of Google’s earth- but we do feel we have some suggestions to make things that little bit easier for all of us. Here are some ground rules the editors from @CetteCulture think can help:

The Emoji-Code

  • Is the emoji necessary?
  • Does the emoji fit the context and intent of the communication?
  • Three emojis is the maximum for any occasion
  • Five emojis or more is pushing the envelope

 

Emoji Image arcticle 5- pillow faces

 

“Emoji-nal” Intelligence

It’s really good and fun to be playful with communication but please be tactful and consider the reader of the message at the same time. Emojis are there to add effect to the message and not decoration, so don’t force the reader to have a visual overdose. Remember to think like a Native American when it comes to applying emojis to your screen-based smoke signals: keep it short and relevant. Don’t allow your emoji usage to be likened to that of a forest fire by destroying communication and text space in the process.

 

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words (… on these occasions)

Again it’s not all doom and gloom on this side, as the following are examples of some exceptional cases for putting [all] the writing on the wall:

  • You’ve just won the lottery
  • Someone has finally ‘put a ring on it’
  • The baby has arrived
  • You’ve found the cure to a major illness
  • Your computer just crashed and you didn’t hit ‘Save’ a few paragraphs before
  • You’ve just walked into Narnia

 

 

If a particular friend, colleague or relative popped into your head while you were having a read, pass on this message from @CetteCulture and ask them if they agree- because you can indirectly paint the perfect picture and cause them to stop and think about their intended recipients, the next time before they hit the send button.

 

 

Like, share, follow, subscribe but more importantly- “Say something!”.

 

 

 

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movie

Another Spider-Man Film!


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spider-man-homecoming-trailer-2-hd-screencaps-3

Peter Parker has hit our screens yet again, this time in Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017), directed by Jon Watts who brought to you Cop Car (2015), and Clown (2014). Two highly recommended films.

Already we have had Spider-Man with Tobey Maguire in 2002 directed by Sam Raimi, closely followed by the sequels in 2004, and 2007. Soon after, Marc Webb directed The Amazing Spider-Man in 2012, with its sequel 2 years later co-starring Jamie Foxx as Electro. Marc Webb’s version was the best depiction at the time although I wasn’t spiderman-tobey-maguire-header-1006431-1280x0fulfilled, nor satisfied with Electro; his performance wouldn’t have been missed had the film taken an alternate narrative path. Jon Watts brings an ominous mood to today’s version – very dark, and mysterious, yet he manages to give the audience lots of laughter striking a good balance which is certainly enjoyable. However, he doesn’t give the viewers the usual backstory that we are spoiled with. This is usually Aunt May, and Uncle Ben’s story, along with Uncle Ben’s demise. Alternatively, he relies on the knowledge of the viewer, and how well they know the superhero. This was a conscious decision made by the executives to allow more time in the film to tell different parts of the story, instead of rehashing something that most, if not all, are already familiar with.

Spider-Man: Homecoming currently grossed at $117 million in its opening week worldwide, whereas Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man took $114 million, and The Amazing Spider-Man (2012), just $62 million. In the 2017 version, Peter Parker (Tom Holland) teams up with Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), and Vulture (Michael Keaton) to bring spider-man-homecoming-video-peters-suit-techanother narrative strand to the Marvel story. Although this is ‘another Spider-Man film’, it gives the newer audience members a chance to experience the comic book hero in motion picture. Seeing as Spider-Man: Homecoming is certified 12A, said 12 year old that would watch the 2017 version, wouldn’t have been able to enter the cinema to see any other Spider-Man movies previously made. So even though, the films are made every 4 to 5 years and seems repetitive, this is to not only to keep money churning in in Hollywood, but to give the ‘younger’ cinema goer a chance to relive what the ‘older’ cinema goer experienced. It’s a must watch version, and I highly recommend it!

In true Stan Lee style, this ‘MARVEL-lous Mastermind’ makes a cameo appearance so, be sure to stay until the very end of the film for more laughter. This is until the LAST credit rolls on the screen; do NOT move!

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Written by

Deanna Russell – 

@DCRussellWrites

fun, Happiness, Health, Life, Love, mental health, motivation, relationships, self growth, Wellness

LOVING LIFE IN 4 STEPS


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Even though I’m still figuring out this crazy play called ‘Life’, looking back at the lessons learned over the years I believe I may have partially cracked it- that great code: the art of living.

It may all still be work in progress but here are my 4 easy steps to love your life:

 

Step 1: Think positively

This one can be hard. I’m not telling you to pretend to be positive all the time, however, having a positive mind-set is so refreshing. Life can be a struggle at times, but most of the time we think things, as well as add extra stress on our minds that are really unnecessary. When we wake up and think about the day, sometimes its only normal to think about the challenges you’re going to face. I’ve decided to stop this, and instead I now wake up every day and picture it as the best day so far (‘cos…why not!). Even if we fail or things don’t go to plan we must remember as cheesy as it sounds- tomorrow is always a new day; it’s the mistakes made along the way that help shape us into the people we are today, in order to be wiser tomorrow.

 

Step 2: Surround yourself with the best people

These are the people that want your growth, and shape you into the person YOU want to be. I never thought that this was important, until it happened to me. For most of us the problems are the same: “Yeah, my skin isn’t always perfect”, “I have a bloated belly”, “My hair doesn’t always looks nice” … blah- blah-blahhhh; these are some of these little things eat away at our confidence, and sometimes we surround ourselves with people who are quick to let us know about it. Generally I’m a happy go lucky, fun girl, but I started surrounding myself with people that brought me down, made me unhappy and exhausted my kindness in certain instances. One day it changed. Someone came into my life out of the blue that was like me- I found someone who helped me, and opened my eyes to people I could trust. Now I’m not saying you need someone to change your outlook on life, but being with people who love you for being you, people that support you at your highest as well as your lowest, and want you to grow is THE BEST feeling. It is so important to KNOW YOUR WORTH and have people that appreciate you, and that you can appreciate too. I have friends that are honestly like family.

 

 

Friendship group talk- multi-colour

No matter how big or small your circle is, always make sure it is one that fills you with love and keeps you grounded. Everyone is so special in their own way and I really believe that when we encourage one another and bring out the best in the other person, it also allows us to bring out the best in ourselves. It happened to me, and I can promise you right now my life has not been the same ever since!

 

Step 3: Self-confidence

This is such a hard topic, especially because of the society we live in now. We want that perfect selfie, that flawless face, that ‘Instagram body’. But ladies (and gents) learning to love yourself is the key to everything! It is hard, and I’m not even there myself, but I have done things I never thought I would do; and steps 1 and 2 will help you get to step 3.

I cannot stress how much time I spent feeling down about things- it’s mental! Rather than always thinking of the bad things currently in your life, the things that bring you down etc, try and think about the fact that you’re healthy, happy, surrounded by the best of friends, family, and maybe even a partner. Think about what you did today that was amazing (no matter how big, or small), or the steps to that change that you’re going to make tomorrow, or the day after that: because every day that you open your mind to the world of possibilities, the more you will love life!

 

‘We want that perfect selfie, that flawless face, that ‘Instagram body’. But ladies (and gents) learning to love yourself is the key to everything!’

 

Step 4: Laughter really is the best medicine

 

Now I’m not telling you to go start randomly cracking jokes left, right and centre to yourself (…by yourself, ha ha), but have a reason to smile; have a reason to make someone’s day. Be who you want to be: if you know you’re loud and crazy, embrace it! If you know you’re more subtle and sweet, that is also fine too! Be you and stay true to yourself because things are never as bad as you think they are.

I want everyone to challenge themselves: push yourself out of your comfort zone! If someone challenges you to try something totally new [and legal] – do it! Being a happy person benefits your life and people will genuinely gravitate to you for it. I’ve gotten things in life just from being my own brand of happy, fun and funny- and let me tell you it can also get you OUT of things too! Be cheeky, be charming, be YOU and really enjoy YOUR real life story in your own skin with true friends.

Think along the lines of Dr.Pepper when it comes to being yourself :-

 

“WHY NOT, WHAT’S THE WORST THAT COULD HAPPEN?”

 

(These are things I wish I could’ve told myself a few years ago).

 

 

 

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Millie Miles –

 

@milliemilesxx

media, movie, TV, TV shows

Get Out Movie Review


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When Meeting The Parents Has a Deeper Meaning *contains spoilers*

I’m not usually part of the clan that runs to the cinema when there is so much hype surrounding a film, I will go based on whether the film is worth watching at all in my opinion. However, everyone that I spoke to, (which was everyone) told me that Get Out is a must see movie. So I decided to see what the buzz was all about; bearing in mind I had watched the trailer late last year.get-out-daniel-kaluuya-allison-williams-slice-600x200

Director, and Writer of Get Out, Jordan Peele commonly known as half of the comedy duo: Key and Peele. Keegan-Michael Key being the other half to the partnership. Their show was extremely popular through 2012-2015, and can still be watched on Comedy Central’s YouTube channel. Get Out is Peele’s directorial debut, which is currently (April 2017) grossing at $156 million worldwide, and has surpassed The Blair Witch Project (1999) that grossed $150 million. In Get Out, black male lead, Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) visits his new girlfriend, Rose’s parents’ family estate. He has reservations about going as they are white, and this is the first time Rose (Allison Williams) is introducing a black boyfriend to the Armitage family. They arrive, and during their meet and greet with Rose’s dad, Dean (Bradley Whitford) a Neurosurgeon, and her mother, Missy (Catherine Keener), a Hypnotherapist, Missy, and Bradley learn that Chris is trying to quit smoking. She offers to hypnotize him, to alleviate him of his cravings but he politely declines. Later that night when he wakes up from his restless sleep to sneak out and have a cigarette, Missy catches Chris creeping back into the house, and sees an opportunity to persuade him to talk about him quitting. With a few clicks of her teaspoon on her teacup, and talk of his childhood memories and him blaming himself for not finding his mother when she hadn’t returned home – she was found bleeding to death after a hit and run. Chris finds himself in a deep and dark place: a Sunken Place. He can see and hear, but his body is paralyzed, and the click of a teacup controls this state of hypnosis.

Peele says on Twitter:

image

This place is clearly an allegory of the fears Black America have. Their anxieties have been engulfed because of the win of the Republican Party which placed Donald Trump into presidency late 2016.

Black America is still mentally enslaved by White America this is evident at the time when Chris meets the rest of the Armitage family, and their friends. The guests begin to bid as Chris is on sale unbeknown to him (and previously other black males/females that Rose lured to the house). The highest bidder wins in their game of Bingo for their/the black person’s most desirable attributes. I believe this is Peele metaphorically speaking about White America ‘buying into’ black culture and their ‘desirable attributes’. The Armitage family would use parts of the black men and women’s bodily parts to enhance their physicality, or their mental. Athleticism in the NBA is exemplary of this. Commissioner Adam Silver is profiting from the courtside, or his office whilst the NBA players who are predominantly black males are working on the ‘field’, and to add, the percentage of black coaches are very low. Conversely, is this a problem if the players are profiting too from their own ‘desirable attributes’? Is the system silencing black males? Surely they have a say in the matter.

The distinct contrast between Chris, and Rose’s skin tones, when they were clasping jungle-fever-movie-posterhands in Get Out made me think this could be a new age Jungle Fever film. This moment was very reminiscent of Wesley Snipes, and Annabella Sciorra holding hands on the film poster of Jungle Fever (1991). I don’t believe Spike Lee would have gotten the same plaudits as Peele had he made this film. Although Get Out is no way a comedy, Peele’s comedic background softens his delivery about the myths of post-racial America, it’s delicate. If Spike Lee, directed Get Out, the ‘message’ would have been more abrasive due to his distinguished pro-black films that he has written, and directed. It’s not to say that a comedy writer cannot make a horror, it’s that his audience may not take him seriously. They are so used to seeing Peele write and act in comedy that they don’t recognize the leap he has made from comedy to horror. This belief even started a hash tag trend on Twitter: #GetOutChallenge, where tweeters were making light of one of the characters in the film. Even though Peele embraced this, how hard hitting is the message of his film, and his accolade as a horror director. When Alfred Hitchcock was chosen to direct Psycho (1960), he too wasn’t taken seriously as a horror director as his background was mainly directing romance, mystery and thrillers. Hitchcock proved the critics wrong, and although at the time Peeping Tom (1960) was said to be a better film than Psycho – both horror films released in 1960, Psycho has stood the test of time, and is a canon film. Maybe with time Get Out may too become a canon film.

Peele says in his interview with Variety:

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Peele ensures that the black male lead doesn’t get murdered which is a trend in pretty much all horror films that have a black male actor. From Omar Epps in Scream 2 (1997), to Mekhi Phifer in I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998). So, in Get Out not only does Chris save his own life, his friend Rod (LilRel Howery), a TSA agent, who shows up to help him leave the Armitage estate in the final act. The alternate ending would have been what we hear to be police sirens, is exactly that, and not the sirens of Rod’s TSA car. Chris then would have been arrested for the massacre, and murders on the Armitage estate. However, Peele said this would highlight that racism is still an issue in America. He instead, goes with the ending where Chris and Rod live up to the films name, and they ‘Get Out’. Peele describes this as a ‘positive feeling’, and Get Out provides the audience with escapism, knowing that there is no ‘real’ escape. Black America no longer have their black hero former president Barack Obama to be their savior, like Rod (in Get Out). They have a Far Right political leader for their president, and sadly more cases of black males dying at the hands of racism, and police brutality. So once the credits go up, and the lights come on in the cinema, Black America are back in their Sunken Place, and there really is no escape, or is there?

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Written by

Deanna Russell – 

@DCRussellWrites

mental health, movies

SILVER SCREENING MENTAL HEALTH


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In my most recent visits to the cinema, I noticed that there have been some films that have used mental illness as an allegory for their storylines. Here a some examples: Most people have seen Finding Nemo (2003), the cute clownfish that defies his father’s wishes and goes into the open waters. 14 years later, children and adults alike were excited when Disney Pixar released a sequel to the film: Finding Dory (2016).

However, when I watched Finding Dory, it evoked more sadness and despair than lightheartedness that I expected for an animated film. Dory is separated from her parents cinema-860681_1920and sets out to find them, but her memory or lack there of doesn’t allow this. Ellen DeGeneres’ character’s desperation to find her parents and her frantic behaviour when nobody has seen them becomes quite uncomfortable to watch. If by then you the viewer hadn’t realised that this is a allegory for Alzheimer and making people i.e. the adults who take their children to watch the film, aware.

Dory’s repetition of “keep swimming” is a metaphor for “keep going” which becomes more of a haunting chant than an affirmation. The revelation at the end (no spoilers) is even more heartbreaking, quite similar to Lights Out (2016), a Horror Film directed by David F. Sandberg. In the film we learn that siblings Martin (Gabriel Bateman)and older sister Rebecca (Teresa Palmer) are taunted and eventually pushed out their family home movie-1209089_1920when a dark entity appears every time they switch the lights off. The only person that isn’t afraid of the “Nosferatu looking” figure is their mother, Sophie (Maria Bello). As long as Sophie takes her medication this entity will not appear whether dark, or light. Her kids made a deal to get their mother to better mental health. It may seem exploitative that the studios are using mental illness as an allegory for their stories. Have they ran out of ideas of different types of boogie men they could use? Conversely, maybe the script writers are using film as a platform to make their audiences aware of mental health?

In Split (2017) starring James McAvoy and directed by M. Night Shyamalan also displays mental illness, this time not as an allegory but as the main narrative drive where the main character Kevin, has schizophrenia. Yet, Hollywood exploring mental illness is not movie-1688586_1920something that’s new as there have been films that delve into this, such as Silver Linings Playbook (2012) starring Bradley Cooper. He plays Pat who rejoins his family after being in a mental institution. He ended up in the institution after a failed relationship, and the loss of his job. However this film is categorised as a Drama and Comedy. Whereas, Split and Lights Out are dark Thrillers and Horrors with analogies.

Even Finding Dory has an eerie undertone. Hollywood releasing such films is fine, in my opinion, although, I believe that the audience may walk out the cinema with awareness to Alzheimer’s, Schizophrenia, and Depression but the pitfall is that they will have a skewed depiction on mental health. Not all mental illnesses end up in suicide, killing, death or trauma. This could be more damaging than, shedding light on such matters, and thus instilling fear in the viewer, leaving the cinema less educated and more afraid.

What’s your thoughts?

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Deanna Russell – 

@DCRussellWrites

Love, Money, Saving, Valentines Day

3 Ways To Save After Valentines Day


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I bet you’re thinking that last night was the best night in the world, until you looked at your bank account balance!

Did you go to the Shard and spend over £200 for a starter dish and much more for the main course?, not to even mention desert! Or did you pay the Uber driver five times as much as you had expected just to make a loved one feel happy?

It’s okay, they say love makes you crazy! valentines-day-2012274_1280

After years of experience taking my loved one on many dates in the city. These 3 simple steps will better your finances and get you into good savings habits for the rest of your life, if truly applied.

1. Budget – Look at how much you have in your bank and carefully budget how much you spend on lunch daily. If you spend over £3 a day on Lunch, that’s £15 a week, which is £60 a month. Why don’t you buy some ingredients from your favourite supermarket and make your weekly lunches with it. Just until payday at-least!

2. Say No! – If your friends are calling and trying to get you to go for a night out after a big valentines day spend, say NO! Saying NO is hard, painful and discouraging to a friend/friends. However, your bank balance will be smiling at you! Who do you want to please more? coins-1015125_1920

3. Leave Your Bank Card At Home – If you have a feeling that you are bound to spend money as soon as you leave your home, because you struggle with self-control. Leave your bank card at home before you shut your door, take budgeted money for the day and smile because you are doing yourself a favour in the long run.

If you follow these 3 simple steps your bank account will be hpiggy-bank-7905_1920appy! You might get angry friends, and you might feel upset that you couldn’t eat at your favourite restaurant for some time. But… yet again… your bank account will be happy!

Financial planning is very important, as you do not want to be anxious about not having any finances until the next pay-day at the end of the month. Victory loves preparation and a happy bank account means more free time.

Lets us know your thoughts!

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food, Health, Honey, Wellness

MANUKA HONEY- KEEPING YOUR NATURAL BUZZ


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For the #Cultured. We already know what most of you are thinking- “It sounds like something exotic used for that sensitive full Brazilian at the beauty parlour?”. Delightfully, we are happy to confirm that it is not! For the more informed amongst us, this is one of mother nature’s natural, non-toxic, antibacterial little secrets. This particular stream of naturally sweet amber-coloured goodness is what can supposedly give an extra high to busy bees like us, and keep the swarm afloat through the day.

What in the honey world is it- you may ask?

Just before we get started I just want to say it again: Ma-nu-kaaaaaaaa…..

Okay, now that that’s out of our system let’s cover some basics:

1) Bee’s make honey, don’t they?

yeeeah…..

2) Honey is made from nectar, isn’t it?

Mhmmmm….

3) All Honey is the same…right?

Wrong! All honey is not equal.

Manuka Honey is a monofloral honey that can only be traced back to Australia and New Zealand, where the aptly named Manuka teatree grows. Honey can only be considered as ‘monofloral’ if the nectar used to make it is sourced from one specific flower species; so the honey is predominantly made up of one set of specific biological nutrients and compounds in the process. This unique honey production system is meant to reduce the possibility of pollen or nectar mixing from other flower types. Manuka honey is one of the richest, thickest and creamiest of all honeys- with claimed medicinal advantages and health benefits.

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The Bee’s-knees of alternative health

The previous civilizations in Australia and New Zealand not only used the honey made from the Manuka tree as a dietary staple, but was also seen as a medical marvel- as believed by many even to this day. Some of the honeys current loyalists include Queen Bees and Hollywood wonder women such as Beyonce Knowles-Carter, Gwyneth Paltrow, Scarlett Johansson, and super star worker Bees like Novak Djokovic. There are growing claims that the antibacterial healing properties from Manuka Honey can be experienced almost immediately by its users from just a spoon or two a day (when its intake is incorporated into an active and healthy lifestyle). Due to the fact that this particular honeys richness in: Calcium, Zinc, Phosphorus, B vitamins, and Iron (important cell-repairing nutrients), it is believed to supposedly have 4 times the nutrient healing strength of other honeys. With all the enhanced benefit claims its users have attributed Manuka honey to have improved their:

  • Digestion
  • Natural immune system and allergy resistance
  • Energy levels
  • Skin cell repair (for our runway friends)
  • and throat lubrication

Combing the aisles for Honey

So it turns out that the Bee’s, those little black and yellow gatecrashers that invite themselves to your annual picnic on a warm summer’s afternoon still need to be paid for their work (fair trade of course!). Most supermarkets, good specialist health retailers and e-tailers will stock the Manuka, but the liquid gold is a high demand- limited supply luxury, so the price tag may sting a bit (but according to most of its users it is worth every drop). With that being said ensure that the honey is authentic Manuka; before purchasing ensure that that the unique Manuka factor (UMF) starts at a level 10+ – this should be visible on the product packaging (or else it may be a weaker honey type, or even a counterfeit product). But on a more serious note if you are allergic to Bees or Honey then please do consult your health specialist first to avoid any allergic reactions.

So after the all indulgent season of Turkey, Cranberry sauce, gravy and all the trimmings all those weeks ago, and even after devouring the boxes of Chocolate covered hearts and bottles of Prosecco this Valentines day make sure your detox includes the super Manuka as a bare necessity this year.

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Disclaimer:

Though the title ‘Queen Bee’ is an accepted term in apiology (the study of Bee’s), it was used artistically for the article- in line with the topic in question. Cette Culture, its editors and the the contents of this article was in no ways aiming to displease or disrespect Her Royal Highness- Beyonce, or her loyal BeyHive.

Thank you.

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media, movies, TV, TV shows

Why Are There So Many Remakes of Films, and TV Shows?


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As a huge fan of both Film, and TV, I am always excited to see new releases that’s out in the cinemas. I am always anxious to analyse them from a screenwriter’s perspective, and merely an audience member. Lately however, I have noticed that almost every other Film and/or TV release is a remake. As a screenwriter, and author, or in fact anybody who works in production, whether it’s fashion, music, food or other, naturally one draws influences from whatever they are inspired by. Thus the creator may make reference to such

white-male-1847732_1280influences in their work. But what happens when “filmmakers” are rebooting films? Namely Metropolis (1927) which was the straw that broke the camel’s back for me and the catalyst to writing this piece. According to The Hollywood Report,  Golden Globe winner: Sam Esmail, (Director, and Writer of TV show Mr Robot) is turning the film into a mini series, and to cast Idris Elba. In my opinion, it’s such an easy route to take; what else is there to do, you choose a well known film, add well known actors, and actresses, and then watch the ratings soar, and the money will follow. Each episode is due to cost $10 million after all. It’s such a cheat; yes you may be influenced (or not), but remakes, and reboots are cop outs.

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Has the surge of the remakes and reboots educated the intended market, or left them believing that the they have watched is in fact an original piece of work? What does it matter? It matters because, credit should be given where due, and most importantly, some remakes should be left alone. How many times do we need to see Romeo and Juliet. Even the well known Rear Window (1954) was rebooted into Disturbia (2007). It takes away from the originality of the work. People leave the cinema with no knowledge that the film was ever a remake, and thus the original filmmaker doesn’t get credit for his/her work. For argument sake, if the original filmmaker does get credit, to some degree homage has been paid. Yet it doesn’t take away from the fact that the Production Company and/or Network has decided to “lazily” release a film, and more so, the filmmaker hasn’t put much thought in the film making process. Do the audience want to see anyone other than Chris Tucker in Rush Hour? Even if it’s the TV version. Well, CBS cancelled its TV version after its first season.

Film Releases for 2017 Remakes and/or Reboots Included!

Some films that are set for a 2017 release are: Kôkaku Kidôtai’s 1995 Ghost in the Shell which has been remade, and in cinemas in March. Scarlett Johansson is the main lead in the Japanese classic. Why didn’t cast a Japanese actor/actress as the main lead? Because, an A-list celebrity in a film that the mainstream cinema-goers haven’t heard of will have the film quickly rising to the top of the box office, and raking in that money. We have all heard of, and seen, Beauty and the Beast. A remake will be released in March 2017 starring Emma Watson (from Harry Potter). Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is to star in the 2017’s popcorn-1615179_1280version of Jumanji out in cinemas in Dec. Whether he is or isn’t trying to fill Robin Williams’ shoes, he will be compared to him regardless.

The Ring, which is a remake of the Japanese film Ringu, which was adapted from Koji Suzuki’s novel, with the same name has been remade by Hollywood. Rings, the 3rd instalment of the franchise will be released in February. The central antagonist who sports the iconic hair over the face is actually taken from Japanese theatre, Kabuki, which exaggerates makeup, hair, costume, movement, and so on. In mainstream cinema, this is lost in translation, and so the meaning is watered down. The versions that are remade, displays the antagonist, Sadako as just a creepy looking person, and the viewer knows no more than that. Also, Gojira (1954), better known as Godzilla (1998), starring Matthew Broderick. In the Japanese version, the ‘monster’ represents America invading Japan causing destruction. So, when the 1998 version, Godzilla was made, you could imagine the disgust of the Japanese people that saw this film, and their history as somewhat being mocked for entertainment  – again this film was lost in translation. I am not judging the level of intellect of the viewer, although, whose responsibility (if any) is it, to educate the viewer. Maybe the filmmaker and/or Production Companies/Networks could also announce to the audience that the work they are about to release, is a remake or reboot.

80s hit TV show, LA Law has been given the green light by its writer, Bill Finkelstein to reboot the TV series.

Creator Steven Bochco speaks to Variety.com:

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Some originals to look forward to if you’re a horror fan like myself, you’ll be excited for the release of Saw: Legacy (2017) – it’s currently rumoured, and not confirmed as of yet so let’s keep our fingers crossed. Alien: Covenant (2017) is another must see by Ridley Scott.

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Written by

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@DCRussellWrites

motivation, new year, Work

“NEW YEAR, NEW ME!” – PROVE IT!


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Rocky Training

For the #Cultured. Let’s keep this short and sweet for the sake of brevity. On the precipice of the new year we enter a temporary online groundhog day on all forms of social media. This is the time of year when just about everybody and their mother posts memes, select avatars, and plaster messages online that say the same thing; like the whole world attended the same seminar and felt so inspired (using the term loosely) that they just had to share their life transforming message with us all. Yep, you guessed it:

“New Year, New Me!”

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2017

This questionable phrase is worse than the ‘Y.O.L.O’ epidemic of 2011. But unlike Drake’s ‘Motto’ people do not care, nor do they believe you (rightfully so) for 2 reasons:

 

  1. Proof (or lack thereof)
  2. Wasn’t that your resolution last year?

DREAM. PLAN. PROVE IT. REPEAT.

Okay so if you’re offended at this stage then good, because we are talking to you. If those around you are just too courteous and keep on lying to you then your straight-talking neighbourhood editors at C’ette Culture won’t. For those in the culture looking to make life changes, like *upgrading your physical outlook,* going back to black with your cheque book or *laying the brick and mortar to your own empire then here are 4 basic steps to avoid being another victim of the ‘N.Y.N.M.’ movement, but an actual winner:

Dream catching

Dreams -we all have them, from before the time that you’re in pre-

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Creed

school, all the way to graduation day and beyond. Whatever the vision or end goal is make sure you write it down, or record it somehow; set the written dream as a final destination to motivate your passion and discipline so that the vision does not escape you.

 

Planning

A dream without a plan is just a fantasy. Without a step by step plan, or practical and realistic timeline nobody will take you seriously, but more importantly you are fooling yourself and stalling the possibilities even further. You can talk yourself into seeing whatever you want in your dream but the latin proverb sums up success perfectly: ‘victory loves careful preparation’. You don’t believe us ask Usian Bolt, or Warren Buffett, or Anna Wintour, or Richard Branson, or Beyonce Knowles-Carter, or Mark Zuckerberg.

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Rocky

So whether you are looking to get the beach rockin’ body by the summer, looking to have better time management and general management of your life, or looking to earn that promotion at work…plan, plan, plan, and plan some more. From the first step, to the middle of the journey, to the end of the struggle-map it out. Give yourself a specific and measurable timeline along with specific and set targets to measure up to. It’s your dream and nobody can achieve it for you.

Prove it with change

History is mostly written by corrupt commentators (like us) and those who win. Tonnes of large cheques bounce every day because the talker was cheap. We can understand that it probably feels nice that everyone’s saying the same thing online and intentions are all fine and dandy, but it is results that separates life’s ‘talkers’ from the victors. All it takes to shut up your haters, crush your critics and get closer to your goal after dreaming is taking the first step in your plan. There, that’s it- you have literally changed the course of your very history in that one action; whether it is going to the gym once a week and eating better, cutting out some trash TV and cleaning up your business plan or finding an agent and paying for acting classes twice a month.

film-rocky-1976-rocky_balboa-sylvester_stallone-tshirts-win_rocky_win_tshirt-595x335
Rocky Training

And it doesn’t matter how small the change is, or even if you do not hit your target the first time round (or you become tired after of slow development), just remember that your are a thousand steps ahead of where you started and so much closer to your dream than before. Remember to follow through on the promise you made to yourself.

Repeat and improve

This section is pretty self-explanatory: adjust where necessary, repeat the process and improve relevant practices in due course. Nothing more, nothing less.

At C’ette Culture we do not want members of the #Cultured to be found wanting like Kevin Hart in the movie Ride Along, shouting “I am Omar” in a warehouse full of critics who just don’t believe you. The term New Year, New Me, means nothing if there isn’t a plan behind it and nothing to show for it.

Rocky

Now, to those of you who still wish to ascribe to the N.Y.N.M school of thought even after reading this article, please answer the following to yourself honestly before trolling the #Cultured:

Why the procrastination in the first place?

What’s wrong with making a brand new start right now (as in today)?

What exactly is the plan for change?

Like, share, follow us, subscribe, but more importantly- get on with it!

 

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