This is a very light-hearted drama about a girl’s struggles with her insecurities. One day, she bumps her head at the gym and mistakenly wakes up believing that she is beautiful and thin.
Starring: Amy Schumer, Adrian Martinez, Rory Scovel, Michelle Williams, Lauren Hutton, Busy Philipps, Aidy Bryant, Naomi Campbell
Plot: The film begins by introducing the main character, Renee Bennett (Amy Schumer), a 20-something young girl who lives in New York and works in IT in a grungy basement in Chinatown, the back office of a leading cosmetics retailer, Lily Le Claire with her colleague Mason (Adrian Martinez).
Renee suffers from a low self-esteem stemming from poor body image. This isn’t helped by a sales assistant in a clothing store informing her that larger sizes are available online when Renee goes clothes shopping.
One day, she attends a fitness class at Soul Cycle and hits her head. She blacks out from concussion and wakes up, believing that she is beautiful. Renee annoys her best friends Viv (Aidy Bryant) and Jane (Busy Philipps) by being so obsessed with her image and her belief that it has changed, as this is only the case in Renee’s mind. Everyone one else sees her as they always have.
Renee has the confidence to apply to the headquarters of Lily Le Claire for a position as receptionist. She is successful in her application and starts working on the front desk. Renee impresses Avery Le Claire (Michelle Williams) and her grandmother (Lauren Hutton) with her knowledge of how to pitch a bargain line to be sold at Target and appeal to working class women. Renee even catches the eye of playboy Grant (Tom Hopper), Avery’s sister.
Renee has the confidence to give her phone number to Ethan (Rory Scovel), a man who is waiting in line behind her at the dry cleaners, and they start dating. On their first date, she enters into a bikini contest. While she does not win, she puts on an incredible performance and a man at the bar tells Ethan how lucky he is to be with her as she is such a lot of fun to be around. Ethan tells Renee that he likes her because “you’re so yourself”.
While Renee is on a business trip to Boston, she hits her head again and wakes up realising with horror that she has reverted to her former self. She is devastated. She breaks up with Ethan, only to later apologise to him. He takes her back and makes it clear that he loves her exactly as she is. She also reconciles with Viv and Jane, who accept her apology for being so self-obsessed and vain.
In a speech advertising the bargain line of Lily Le Claire, Renee has a realisation that her appearance did not change at all during the course of the film. She tells the audience that true beauty and confidence come from within, not from the cosmetics they use.
Address: Unit B1, 9 Gooch Place, Howick
Phone: 09 535 2222
Yesterday, mum and I dined at a Chinese restaurant in Howick called San Hou. For a long time, we had been searching for an authentic Chinese dining experience and didn’t care if the restaurant wasn’t fancy. We finally managed to find what we were looking for.
The menu is very extensive and to me, was a little confusing. This was quickly sorted by chatting to the waitress, who helped us decide what to order. She said that basically any of the noodle dishes could be done exactly as we liked, which was a nice thing to hear! There were so many choices though – beef, chicken, pork or fish? Seafood? What kind of noodle? Rice? Crispy? Egg? Or maybe you prefer rice? Soup or dry? You could visit this restaurant so many times and probably still not scratch the surface of what they have to offer.
After much deliberation, we decided on some vegetarian spring rolls ($6), vegetarian steamed buns ($6) and vegetarian dumplings ($8) to begin, followed by chicken rice noodles ($12). The spring rolls were small, crunchy and very tasty. The steamed buns were superb. The texture was light and slightly chewy, and the filling contained some lovely vegetables, delicately cooked. The dumplings were quite unusual and I was apprehensive to try them at first: green almost ravioli like in appearance but delicious. I need not have worried. They were superb, like all the starters.
The main dish, the chicken rice noodles, was divine. The flavour of the dish could be tasted throughout. The chicken was well cooked and there was also some bok choy, which was lovely. At first, after ordering rice noodles I wondered if I had made a mistake and if I should have ordered egg noodles. I need not have worried. The rice noodles were lovely and perhaps a little lighter in texture than egg noodle dishes I have tried at other restaurants. In any event, there is always next time. We will definitely be back for more samplings.
1 Queen Street, Auckland City
Price: $$ (average)
Style: Fast food/burger joint
Today, mum and I had lunch at Lord of the Fries in Auckland City. This restaurant is in fact a caravan with limited seating on picnic tables outdoors. The amazing thing about Lord of the Fries is that it is 100% vegan, yet does not compromise on taste. It serves up a delicious range of burgers, fries (the name of the restaurant takes after its fries, for which the restaurant is most famous and what it first started serving), hot dogs and sides such as onion rings.
Neither of us is vegan, but I had read some good reviews for Lord of the Fries, so we decided to add it onto our list of restaurants to dine at. We enjoyed the morning at Mission Bay. I took a long walk along the waterfront and we had coffee at the Coffee Club, then returned to the city to have lunch.
There was so much to choose from, so we pondered over the menu for a little while. We had a couple of vouchers for burgers and fries from the Entertainment Book. A quick check with the girl behind the counter revealed that we could use them both, which was good. We each ordered Spicy burgers ($10 each), one kumara fries ($7.50), one shoestring fries ($6.50) and one onion rings ($8). To complement the fries, we ordered the Parisienne sauce, which was aioli.
The burgers contained a vegetable patty, lettuce, vegan cheese, pickles and a delicious spicy jalapeno sauce. We had ordered a big size, which is suitable for an adult. They were incredibly filling. The kumara fries were also lovely. It had been a long time since I have had kumara fries so it was a welcome treat. The shoestring fries were perhaps the best I’ve ever tasted. Both fries went well with the Aioli sauce. I have only ever had the pleasure of eating onion rings once before in my life, when Burger King put out a vegetarian burger for a limited time while I was at university. These onion rings were crunchy in texture and absolutely delicious.
I would whole-heatedly recommend Lord of the Fries to other diners, whether they are vegan, vegetarian or carnivore. The food was prepared quickly, was delicious and very filling. The portions are also very generous. Make sure you go hungry so you have lots of room to try different things from the menu!