REVIEW: BURYING THE EX

CAST

Anton Yelchin (Star Trek)
Ashley Greene (Twilight)
Alexandra Daddario (Texas Chainsaw)
Oliver Cooper (Project X)
Archie Hahn (This Is Spinal Tap)
Mark Alan (Magic Hour)
Gabrielle Christian (American Gun)
Mindy Robinson (Iron Man 3)
Dick Miller (Gremlins)

Nice guy and horror fanatic Max (Anton Yelchin) is dating the beautiful-but-manipulative Evelyn (Ashley Greene). Evelyn is an extreme environmentalist working for a blog company that promotes “going green”, while Max works a dead-end job at the local horror shop named Bloody Mary’s. In many situations, Max often finds himself trapped trying to do whatever he can to keep Evelyn happy, including changing his diet and selling his old car. In addition to this, Max dreams of opening up a horror memorabilia shop of his own in the future, much to Evelyn’s dismay. One day at the shop, Max unloads the latest shipments and finds a Satan Genie, an object that claims it can grant anyone’s wants or desires. Believing it to just be another silly item for the shop, Max places it on the shelf in the storage room and dismisses it. Later that night, he and Evelyn have sex in the shop and make a promise to each other that they’ll be together forever. Shortly thereafter, Max has Evelyn move in with him. Max and Evelyn initially decide to celebrate this new development in their relationship by grabbing a bite to eat. Wanting Evelyn to try something he enjoys for a change, Max suggests they go to I-Scream, a malt hot-spot run by Olivia (Alexandra Daddario). Evelyn is immediately unkind to Olivia and believes her and Max were flirting with each other. As Max pleads his case to her, Evelyn tearfully admits that she doesn’t want to lose him and that he’s the only thing in her life that has made her happy since her mother’s death.

All seems to be great until Max comes back home to discover that Evelyn has redecorated their entire apartment to what she feels is aesthetically pleasing and has put away all of Max’s collectables and posters, ruining their price values. This leads to an argument where Max states that he and Evelyn should be making decisions together instead of her taking the reins on every little thing all the time. Feeling that Evelyn’s overbearing nature will lead him to be unhappy for the duration of their relationship, Max plans to break up with her but is too scared to do so. Max turns to his slacker half-brother Travis (Oliver Cooper) for advice. Travis suggests that Max break up with Evelyn in a public place so he can make a quick getaway and have everyone present see her for the control freak she truly is. However, the plan backfires when Evelyn accidentally gets hit by a bus on her way to the park. She dies in the middle of the road as a tearful Max watches.A couple weeks go by and Max has shut himself off emotionally, feeling responsible for Evelyn’s death. Travis swings by his place and, after seeing the funk he’s in, encourages him to get back out and move on. Max eventually runs into Olivia again and starts to hit it off with her. As the night progresses, Max and Olivia learn that they both share the same fascination for horror. But when Max and Olivia visit the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Evelyn is shown to have risen up from the dead and has dug herself up out of the ground. After Olivia walks Max back home, he’s quickly greeted by an undead Evelyn at the door. Evelyn is overjoyed and believes hers and Max’s love is being given a second chance and thinks they’re still dating. Frightened, Max realizes that the Satan Genie from the shop made their wish of being “together forever” come true and has brought Evelyn back from the dead. Still wanting to pursue Olivia, Max actively attempts to hide Evelyn from her. He’s also left to ponder how exactly he’s going officially dump Evelyn. Max presumes that the answer to his problems lie with the Satan Genie, only to have it shatter on the ground when he loses his footing. For his backup plan, Max then researches the occult/spell books the shop has available in the hopes of finding something that will send Evelyn back to her grave. He tries these techniques, but to no avail; as they have no effect on Evelyn whatsoeverTravis stumbles upon Max with a drunken Evelyn, and is reluctant to help him. He soon has a change of heart and tells Max that the only true way he can get rid of Evelyn is to decapitate her with a machete. Max tries to accomplish this but backs out at the last minute. The day before Halloween, Olivia drops by the shop to visit Max. It’s later interrupted by a phone call from Evelyn. Olivia (who still doesn’t know that Evelyn’s a zombie) thinks Max still hasn’t gotten over her just yet, but offers him an invitation to a screening of Night of the Living Dead at the cemetery. Travis steps up to the plate and offers to kill Evelyn so Max can meet Olivia at the movie. Travis shows up at the apartment under the guise of searching for an old DVD Max never returned to him and intentionally prolongs his stay, annoying Evelyn. She then develops a sudden craving for brains and ends up eating Travis. Meanwhile, Max and Olivia are enjoying each other’s company and end up having sex in the back of Olivia’s car.Upon Max’s return, he discovers Travis’s corpse in the living room. Knowing that Evelyn is now determined to kill anyone who gets in her way, Max tricks her into drawing a hot bubble bath for themselves in order to barricade the bathroom door and trap her inside. He rushes out of the apartment to get the police but leaves his cell phone behind. Evelyn doesn’t take too long to break free and escapes. She then kidnaps Olivia after she’s read the texts between her and Max. Having had no luck with the police, Max hears through one of the police scanners about someone knocking over a malt shop and realizes Olivia’s in trouble. Back at the apartment, Max sees Olivia tied up and Evelyn threatens to kill her. A battle ensues between Max, Evelyn, and Olivia, ending with Travis (now revealed to be a zombie himself) fatally stabbing Evelyn through the chest with the machete. With Evelyn finally gone, Max and Olivia take her body back to the cemetery and bury her. One year later, Max and Olivia’s relationship is still going strong. Max has long since quit his job at Bloody Mary’s, became business partners with Olivia—having joined his horror memorabilia store and her malt shop as an enterprise of their own—and is now truly happy. Max then surprises Olivia with an engagement ring, which she gladly accepts. And Travis, still in his zombie form, is shown sign-spinning outside the shop.A brilliant movie and definitely one to watch more than once

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REVIEW: THE TWILIGHT SAGA: BREAKING DAWN – PART 2

CAST
Kristin Stewart (Snow White & The Huntsman)
Robert Pattinson (Sword Xanten)
Taylor Lautner (Tracers)
Peter Facinelli (Supergirl)
Elizabeth Reaser (The Ex List)
Ashley Greene (Burying The Ex)
Jackson Rathbone (S.Darko)
Kellan Lutz (The Legend of Hercules)
Nikki Reed (Sleepy Hollow)
Billy Burke (Red Riding Hood)
Maggie Grace (Lost)
Jamie Campbell Bower (Sweeney Todd)
Christopher Heyerdahl (Sanctuary)
Michael Sheen (Underworld)
Daniel Cudmore (X-Men 2)
Dakota Fanning (Taken)
Cameron Bright (The Butterfly Effect)
Mia Maestro (Alias)
Judith Shekoni (Heroes Reborn)
Lee Pace (The Hobbit)
 
Bella awakens from her transformation from human to vampire, aware of her new abilities, but unaware of changes within the coven, such as Jacob having imprinted on her child, Renesmee. It also appears that Bella’s father, Charlie, has been attempting to contact the Cullens for updates on Bella’s illness. They intend to tell him she didn’t survive, which requires that they move away from Forks, Washington to protect their identities. Jacob, desperate not to lose Renesmee, tells Charlie that Bella is in fact alive and well, and explains that Bella had to change in order to survive. He morphs into a wolf, revealing his tribe’s shape-shifting power, but does not tell Charlie about vampires.
 
Several months pass with Carlisle monitoring Renesmee’s rapid growth. On an outing in the woods, a bitter Irina sees Renesmee from a distance and believes her to be an immortal child. Immortal children were vampires who were changed in childhood, and because they could not be trained nor restrained, they destroyed entire villages. They were eventually executed, as were the parents who created them, and the creation of such children outlawed. Irina goes to the Volturi to report what she has seen. Alice sees the Volturi and Irina coming to kill the Cullens and instructs the others to gather as many witnesses as they can to testify that Renesmee is not an immortal. The Cullens begin to summon witnesses, such as the Denali family. One of the Denali, Eleazar, later discovers that Bella has a special ability: a powerful mental shield which had protected her from Edward’s mind reading even when she was human, and which she can now extend to protect others from mental attacks.
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As some of their potential witnesses are attacked and prevented from supporting the Cullens, Carlisle and Edward realize they may have to fight the Volturi. Their witnesses ultimately agree to stand with them in battle, having realized the Volturi increase the Guard by falsely accusing covens of crimes, destroy them and then recruit vampires with gifts. The Volturi arrive prepared for battle, led by Aro, who is eager to obtain the gifted members of the Cullen coven as part of his guard. Aro is allowed to touch Renesmee, and is convinced that she is not an immortal child. Irina is brought forth and takes full responsibility for her mistake, leading to her immediate death. Aro still insists that Renesmee may pose a risk in the future, validating his claim that battle is necessary. Before any violence, Alice shares with Aro her vision of the battle that is to come, during which both sides sustain heavy casualties, including Aro who would also die. Aro believes her, giving Alice and Jasper an opportunity to reveal their witness (a half mortal half vampire just like Renesmee). The witness proves that he is not a threat, supporting the notion that Renesmee is not a threat. The Volturi unhappily leave without a fight.
Back at the Cullen home, Alice glimpses the future, seeing Edward and Bella together with Jacob and a fully matured Renesmee also together. Edward reads Alice’s mind and feels relieved that Renesmee has Jacob to protect her. Alone in the meadow, Bella pushes her mental shield away and finally allows Edward a peek into her mind, showing him every precious moment she and Edward shared together and the two share a kiss after Bella telling Edward, “No one has ever loved anyone as much as I love you”, and both Edward and Bella saying they’ll love and be together forever. The end credits present the cast members from all five films.
I enjoyed seeing the characters develop, especially  Stewart who steals the show. She has grown into a respectable actress and she has turned a wooden and unlikable character (in the novel) into someone you root for in the film.

REVIEW: THE TWILIGHT SAGA: BREAKING DAWN – PART 1

 

CAST
Kristin Stewart (Snow White & The Huntsman)
Robert Pattinson (Sword Xanten)
Taylor Lautner (Tracers)
Billy Burke (Red Riding Hood)
Sarah Clarke (Thirteen)
Ashley Greene (Burying The Ex)
Jackson Rathbone (S.Darko)
Peter Facinelli (Supergirl)
Elizabeth Reaser (The Ex List)
Kellan Lutz (The Legend of Hercules)
Nikki Reed (Sleepy Hollow)
Anna Kenderick (The Voices)
Christian Serratos (Flight 7500)
Michael Welch (All The Boys Love Mandy Lane)
Michael Sheen (Underworld)
Christopher Heyerdahl (Sanctuary)
Jamie Campbell Bower (Sweeney Todd)
Mia Maestro (Alias)
Maggie Grace (Lost)
Daniel Cudmore (X-Men 2)

Bella Swan is getting ready for her wedding. During the reception, her best friend, Jacob Black the werewolf returns after hearing about Bella and Edward’s engagement. While dancing with him in the woods, away from everyone else, Bella admits that she and Edward plan to consummate their marriage on their honeymoon while she’s still human. Jacob becomes furious, knowing that Edward could easily kill Bella. The other wolves restrain him and leave.
The couple spends their honeymoon on Isle Esme and they make love for the first time. The next morning, Edward realizes that Bella has numerous bruises and is mad at himself for hurting her, though Bella insists she enjoyed the experience. Edward swears not to make love again until she becomes a vampire. Two weeks into their honeymoon, Bella realizes that she is pregnant with a half mortal half immortal child. Edward is terrified by the news, knowing that she may not survive the delivery. He says that Carlisle will remove the monster. She refuses, as she wants to keep the baby and convinces Edward’s sister, Rosalie, who has always wanted a child, to help protect her baby. They fly back home to Forks, Washington. She has only been pregnant for two weeks, but the baby is growing very fast.
Jacob rushes over to the Cullen’s mansion and finds Bella already heavily pregnant. He is angry, saying that they should remove it as soon as possible. Bella says that it is her choice. Jacob is disgusted by this. As Bella gets bigger, the quality of her health declines then rapidly improves as she starts drinking human blood to satisfy the baby’s vampiric thirst. Edward comes to love the baby as much as Bella does as he reads its thoughts, learning that his child loves Bella in return and doesn’t want to hurt her.
Soon after, Bella drops a cup of blood and as she bends down to pick it up, the baby breaks her back. She almost dies giving birth. To save her life, Edward injects Bella’s heart with his venom to transform her into a vampire, but nothing seems to happen and Bella is thought to be dead. Greatly distraught, Jacob attempts to kill the baby, but stops when he realises he has imprinted on the baby. When the werewolves hear of Bella’s death, they attack the Cullens’ house in an attempt to kill the baby as they fear it would become a threat. Edward, Alice and Jasper defend their home and their family, and are later helped by Carlisle, Esme, and Emmett. Jacob then runs outside to stop the battle and shape-shifts. Edward reads Jacob’s mind and announces that Jacob has imprinted on Renesmee and since it is the wolves’ law not to harm anyone who has been imprinted on they are forced to leave. After Bella is cleaned and dressed, her cuts from her difficult labour heal as the venom spreads through her body. The last scene shows Bella open her now blood red eyes as a newborn vampire.
What I loved most about this movie were the emotional extremes. Where the past three Twilight movies are subtle and reserved, this one goes all out, portraying everything from euphoria to unthinkable agony. The blissful scenes at the beginning are such a stark contrast to the agonizing scenes at the end.

REVIEW: THE TWILIGHT SAGA: ECLIPSE

CAST
Kristin Stewart (Snow White & The Huntsman)
Robert Pattinson (Sword Xanten)
Taylor Lautner (Tracers)
Billy Burke (Red Riding Hood)
Anna Kenderick (The Voices)
Michael Welch (All The Boys Love Mandy Lane)
Christian Serratos (Flight 7500)
Jackson Rathbone (S.Darko)
Ashley Greene (Burying The Ex)
Sarah Clarke (Thirteen)
Peter Facinelli (Supergirl)
Elizabeth Reaser (The Ex List)
Kellan Lutz (The Legend of Hercules)
Nikki Reed (Sleepy Hollow)
Bryce Dallas Howard (Jurassic World)
Jodelle Ferland (Kingdom Hospital)
Daniel Cudmore (X-Men 2)
Dakota Fanning (Taken)
Cameron Bright (The Butterfly Effect)
Kristin Prout (Elektra)
In Seattle, not far from Forks, Victoria attacks and bites Riley Biers, in order to begin creating an army of newborns, who are many times stronger during their first few months than older vampires. Back in Forks, Edward Cullen and Bella Swan discuss the complications of becoming an immortal vampire. At 18 years old, one year older than Edward was when he became a vampire, Bella expresses her dislike to the idea of marrying so young, though Edward refuses to turn her into a vampire until they are married, his argument being that she should have various human experiences she would otherwise miss. While Charlie Swan investigates the disappearance of Riley Biers, Edward suspects his disappearance was caused by Victoria and her newborn’s army, furthering his suspicions is Riley’s intrusion into Bella’s room.
Bella insists that Jacob Black and the rest of the werewolf pack would never harm her Bella wants to go to Jacob’s home though Edward expresses his dislike and concern over her safety, but she returns unharmed. During one of her visits, Jacob confesses that he is in love with Bella, and forcefully kisses her. Furious, she punches him and sprains her hand, and Edward later threatens Jacob and tells him to only kiss her if she asks him to. Bella even revokes the invitations of Jacob and his pack members to her graduation party, but when Jacob apologizes for his behavior, she forgives him.
Meanwhile, Alice sees a vision that the newborn army will attack Forks within the week, led by Riley Biers. Jacob, accompanied by Quil and Embry overhear this, which leads to an alliance between the Cullens and Wolf pack. Later, the Cullens and the wolves agree to a meeting place and time to train and discuss strategy against the powerful newborns. During the training Jasper explains to Bella that he was created by a vampire named Maria to control a newborn army. He hated his original existence till he met Alice and joins in Cullens gang. Bella sees the true bond between a mated vampire pair and begins to understand Jasper better. Despite her reluctance to marry, Bella realizes that spending eternity with Edward is more important to her than anything else and agrees to marry him. Edward and Bella camp up in the mountains to hide Bella from the bloodthirsty newborns. During the night, Bella overhears a conversation between Edward and Jacob, in which they temporarily put aside their hatred towards each other. In the morning, Jacob overhears Edward and Bella discussing their engagement and storms off, angrily. Bella desperately asks him to kiss her, and she realizes that she has fallen in love with him. Edward finds out about the kiss but is not upset, as Bella says she loves him more than Jacob.
When Victoria appears, Edward kills her while Seth kills Riley. The Cullens and the Quileute wolves, meanwhile, destroy her “army”, though Jacob is injured saving Leah Clearwater from a newborn. Several members of the vampire police, the Volturi, arrive to deal with the newborn army. They also see that the Cullens are guarding the newborn, Bree Tanner, who had refused to fight and surrendered to Carlisle. Jane tortures Bree to get information, then instructs Felix to kill her, despite the Cullens’ efforts to spare her. When Jane notes that Caius will find it interesting that Bella is still human, Bella informs her that the date for her transformation has been set. Bella visits the injured Jacob to tell him that even though she is in love with him, she has chosen to be with Edward. Saddened by her choice, Jacob reluctantly agrees to come between her and Edward.
Bella and Edward go to their meadow, where she tells him she has decided to do things his way: get married, make love, then be transformed into a vampire. She also explains that she never has been normal and never will be; she’s felt out of place her entire life, but when she is in Edward’s world she feels stronger and complete. At the end of the story they decide they need to tell Charlie about their engagement, for which Bella is happy Edward is bulletproof.

I enjoyed this movie from start to finish and I believe if you go into the movie and not expect that it should be just like the book, you will be pleasantly surprised that the screenwriter and the director have produced a very well made film that takes the most important parts of one of the most compelling books in the series and creates a film that is both dramatic with a little humor. You will walk away knowing that this third film has done the franchise justice and will get you pumped up for Breaking Dawn!

 

 

REVIEW: THE TWILIGHT SAGA: NEW MOON

CAST
Kristin Stewart (Snow White & The Huntsman)
Robert Pattinson (Sword Xanten)
Taylor Lautner (Tracers)
Billy Burke (Red Riding Hood)
Anna Kenderick (The Voices)
Michael Welch (All The Boys Love Mandy Lane)
Christian Serratos (Flight 7500)
Ashley Greene (Burying The Ex)
Jackson Rathbone (S.Darko)
Michael Sheen (Underworld)
Jamie Campbell Bower (Sweeney Todd)
Christopher Heyerdahl (Sanctuary)
Peter Facinelli (Supergirl)
Daniel Cudmore (X-Men 2)
Rachelle Lefevre (White House Down)
Elizabeth Reaser (The Ex List)
Kellan Lutz (The Legend of Hercules)
Nikki Reed (Sleepy Hollow)
Dakota Fanning (Taken)
Cameron Bright (The Butterfly Effect)
On her 18th birthday, Bella Swan wakes up from a dream in which she sees herself as an old woman. She expresses her distaste about growing older than her boyfriend Edward Cullen, a vampire who stopped aging physically at 17. Despite her lack of enthusiasm, Edward’s adoptive family throw Bella a birthday party. While unwrapping a gift, Bella gets a paper cut. Edward’s brother, Jasper, becomes overwhelmed by the scent of Bella’s blood and attempts to kill her. Realizing the danger that he and his family pose to Bella, Edward ends their relationship, and the Cullens leave Forks, Washington.
Edward’s departure leaves Bella heartbroken and depressed for months; however, when her father, Charlie, finally decides to send her to live with her mother in Florida, Bella refuses and agrees to spend more time with her friends. After seeing a movie with Jessica, Bella sees a group of men on motorcycles. This reminds her of when Edward previously rescued her from an assault, and she sees his image warning her to stay away. Bella discovers that any thrill-seeking activities she engages in evoke Edward’s preserved image. She is also comforted by Jacob Black, a cheerful companion who helps to ease her pain over losing Edward. When Jacob suddenly begins avoiding her, Bella discovers that he, and others of his tribe, are descended from a long line of werewolves, and Jacob has just undergone his first transformation. Bella also learns that the werewolves are an age-old enemy of vampires. Jacob’s pack members are on constant alert for Victoria, a vampire seeking to avenge the death of her mate, James, who was killed by Edward after James kidnapped and tried to kill Bella. They rescue Bella from Laurent, when he tries to kill her. With Jacob busy coming to terms with his shape-shifting nature, Bella again finds herself alone, and she returns to seeking thrill-inducing activities.
Through a series of miscommunications, Edward believes that Bella has killed herself by jumping off a cliff into the ocean. Distraught over her apparent suicide, Edward travels to Italy and attempts to provoke the Volturi (powerful coven who act as vampiric overlords) to kill him by exposing himself as a vampire to humans. Alice, Edward’s sister, and Bella rush to Italy to save Edward, and arrive just in time to stop him. Edward explains that he always loved Bella and only left to protect her. However, the Volturi determine that Bella, a human who knows that vampires exist, must either be killed or transformed into a vampire herself. Alice stops them from killing her by sharing her premonition, in which Bella has been transformed, with Aro (Michael Sheen), a Volturi elder who is able to read thoughts through touch. Soon after, they return to Forks and Cullens again settle themselves in Forks. Bella asks Edward to transform her and Cullens vote in favor of that much to Edward and Rosalie’s dismay. Later, Jacob reminds Edward, the treaty Cullens and Quileutes made years before that they will not attack each other, as long as the Cullens do not feed on any humans, a necessity for Bella’s transformation. The movie concludes with Edward telling Bella that he will change her into a vampire after she marries him.
This is not a film that will gain much critical acclaim as the storyline is basic and the special effects are mediocre most of the time. However it is really enjoyable to watch and will delight all fans of the Twilight Saga due to its honest representation of the storyline.

 

REVIEW: TWILIGHT

 

CAST
Kristin Stewart (Snow White & The Huntsman)
Robert Pattinson (Sword Xanten)
Taylor Lautner (Tracers)
Anna Kenderick (The Voices)
Nikki Reed (Sleepy Hollow)
Peter Facinelli (Supergirl)
Billy Burke (Red Riding Hood)
Sarah Clarke (Thirteen)
Rachelle Lefevre (White House Down)
Michael Welch (All The Boys Love Mandy Lane)
Kellan Lutz (The Legend of Hercules)
Ashley Greene (Burying The Ex)
Jackson Rathbone (S.Darko)
Matt Bushell (Shelter)
Elizabeth Reaser (The Ex List)
Christian Serratos (Flight 7500)
Seventeen-year-old Isabella “Bella” Swan moves to Forks, a small town on the Washington coast, to live with her father, Charlie. Her mother, Renée, is remarried to a minor league baseball player, and they travel often to attend games. Bella makes several friends at her new high school, but she is intrigued by the mysterious and aloof Cullen siblings. Bella sits next to Edward Cullen in biology class on her first day of school, but he seems to be repulsed by her. After a week of absence from school, Edward comes back and talks to Bella normally. A few days later, Bella is nearly struck by a van in the school parking lot. Edward saves her by instantaneously covering a distance of over 30 feet and putting himself between Bella and the van, stopping it with only his hand and making a conspicuous dent. He subsequently refuses to explain his actions to Bella and warns her against befriending him.
After much research, Bella concludes that Edward is a vampire. He eventually confirms this but says he and the other Cullens only consume animal blood. The pair fall in love, and Edward introduces Bella to his vampire family. Carlisle Cullen, the family patriarch, is a doctor working in Forks. His wife is Esme, and Alice, Jasper, Emmett, and Rosalie are their informally adopted children. Edward and Bella’s relationship is soon put in jeopardy, when three nomadic vampires — James, Victoria, and Laurent — arrive in Forks. James, a tracker vampire with incredible hunting instincts, is instantly intrigued by Edward’s protectiveness over a human, which incites him to hunt Bella for sport. Edward and the other Cullens risk their lives to protect Bella, but James tracks her to Phoenix, where she is hiding with Jasper and Alice. James lures Bella into a trap by falsely claiming that he is holding her mother hostage. James breaks Bella’s leg before biting her wrist, infecting her with vampire venom. After a ferocious fight, Edward subdues James just as the other Cullens arrive. Alice, Emmett, and Jasper destroy James, decapitating and burning him, as Edward sucks the venom from Bella’s wrist, preventing her from turning into a vampire. Upon returning to Forks, Edward accompanies Bella to the high school prom, where he refuses to grant her request that he transform her into a vampire. As the couple dance, they are unaware that James’ mate, Victoria, is secretly watching, plotting revenge for her lover’s death.
Overall, I enjoyed “Twilight” for what it was – a romance that probed the timeless dilemma of wanting what you can’t have (and despite Meyer’s Mormon beliefs, this whole series is basically a metaphor for sex). It makes for an interesting, compelling story.