Monday, April 21, 2014

Pcheng Photography Give Away! Movie Passes through GMovies

It's been some time since we've had a blog give away - so I'm really excited for this one! :) 

You've probably seen me post about the amazing app that is GMovies - well We're giving away TWO free movie passes! 
(Any movie you want! - That is showing now of course). 

And it's easy! You just need to do the following: 

Like us on our Facebook page: Pcheng Photography
Follow us on Twitter: 
Follow us on Instagram: 

Of course you also have to download the GMovies App - it's already on iTunes and on the Google Play store. Send us a screenshot of the app on your smartphone or device. 

Make sure that you also follow GMovies App on Twitter and Instagram
Twitter: @GMoviesApp   
Instagram: @gmovies  

Email us at and tell us which movie you want to see and who you want to see it with and why!  

Include in your email your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram usernames and handles as well. 

Hurry! Deadline for entries is until April 27, 2014! 

Movie Review: Transcendence

Belonging to the Man Vs. Machine genre of movies i.e The Terminator, AI (Artificial Intelligence), Transcendence takes the battle further by asking and raising questions of morality that will be running through your head as you watch the two hour movie.  

While some may think that this is a good thing since it gets the wheels and cogs inside your head turning, this can actually be a double edged sword since unfortunately, not everyone is made up to absorb the breath taking visuals, the unimaginable possibles that an advanced technology can bring and the profound moral questions and responsibilities that go with it. Paul and I were sitting in the movie house and unfortunately beside us was a group of guys who just didn't get the whole movie. They kept on asking questions and talking among themselves in an obvious struggle to keep up with the movie. 

Now I don't want to sound condescending or anything but the movie is simply not for everybody. It is set in a time where anti-technology radical groups exist and are bent on destroying any advancement in Artificial Intelligence. In the movie this group is known as R.I.F.T and they are radical enough to be considered to be at the terrorist level. 

Warning Contains SPOILERS

Artificial Intelligence scientists and husband and wife team Will and Evelyn Caster (Johnny Depp (queue in the swooning) and Rebecca Hall) have developed a collective intelligence of all things known. This has of course made them along with other Artificial Intelligence scientist colleagues the target of R.I.F.T. 

In a simultaneous attack across Artificial Intelligence labs all over the country, Will Caster is shot with a bullet laced with a radioactive isotope ensuring him a slow and painful death. As she watches her husband wither away to the pain of cancer. Evelyn is determined to upload Will's 'conscience' in an effort to keep him alive -so to speak.  

With the help of Will's best friend Max (Paul Bettany) another favorite actor, they shave off Will's hair, implant chips in his brain and plugs him up with cables, that coupled with his deteriorating body makes him look like that guy from The Cell

After Will passes away, it seems as if he is able to communicate to Evelyn and Max through the system where they uploaded his consciousness to, without the dust even settling, Will asks for more power and to be uploaded to the Internet. (Which is never really a good sign in movies).   

From here - things take a bizarre turn as Max doesn't think it's a good idea to give Will access to infinite knowledge and power and wants to shut him down but a blinded Evelyn follows her husband's request. 

Will is uploaded on to the Internet, Max is captured by R.I.F.T and Evelyn is on the run and acting on Will's instructions to build a research facility in the small, quiet and undeveloped town of Brightwood. 

In Will's unending thirst for knowledge he becomes an omniscient, omnipresent (as long as there's wifi) Artificial Intelligence that soon develops a never-before-seen Nanotechnology so far advanced he is able to heal and give sight to the blind and build his own super zombie army in the process. 

Recognizing how real the danger is, Joseph Tagger (Morgan Freeman) a fellow researcher and friend of the Casters teams up with the FBI led by Donald Buchanan (Cillian Murphy- the Scarecrow in The Dark Knight Trilogy, remember Christopher Nolan is the Executive Producer of Transcendence) and making an exception to their rule joins forces with R.I.F.T who has already turned Max to their side. Make up a team to take down the ever growing threat that is Will Caster.             

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Asia's Next Top Model Season 2: Finale

From 16 to only one. All Sixteen Candidates with Host and Judge Nadya Hutagalung 

Time does fly so fast - and here we are again - it's the Season Finale for Season 2 of Asia's Next Top Model! 

I did a blog post on the Season Finale of Season 1 of Asia's Next Top Model last February 17, 2013 you can check out the link here

I'm obviously a fan of the franchise especially because of it's Asian flare. Long gone are the days when fashion and glamour are confined and defined by race. 

Anyone who has the guts to dream, to pursue that dream and to fight for it deserves...well to be on top so to speak. Just like Season 1 winner Thailand model Jessica Amornkuldilok, who despite her not so young age (in Modeling industry)-27- during the time of the competition, still won the coveted title of Asia's Next Top Model.  

Season 1 was based in Singapore were model hopefuls went around the Lion City chasing their modeling dreams. Season 2 was based in Malaysia and this was a good change, since it offered new location shoots for the photo shoot challenges. 

Even after Season 1 - I've followed the careers of last years' finalists thanks to Instagram :3  

Season One Winner Jessica Amornkuldilok on the cover of a Thai Magazine.

Winner Jessica has been to London (as part of the winners' spoils) and has been to many fashion shows, runways and guestings. Second runner up - Kate Ma of Taiwan had a baby (and might I say he is just a too cute bouncing baby boy) after the competition. And of course, I don't need to look too far since First Runner Up - Stephanie Retuya of the Philippines is a constant on billboards and magazine covers here! :) 

I love this Gundam/Anime/Japanese themed Magazine Cover of  First Season Runner Up Stephanie Retuya
While I'm still admiring and gawking over the accomplishment of last season's finalists; Season 2 was well on it's way and I must say that I loved how the producers really made it a point to bring new things to the show. 

I loved how when each of the contestant spoke to the camera on their thoughts, their country's flag was right behind them as a strong reminder of the country that they were also representing in the competition.  

The producers also came up with having the best photo for each photo shoot printed on panels of boards which slid 'open' every elimination - that was just so cool!

The first episode of Season 2 started out with sixteen girls and it seems like they were too many and you can't really remember any of them but pretty soon I started to have my favorites and some girls started to stand out after a while. 

An early favorite of ours is Nicole Lee of Singapore who albeit her introvert personality (she's a neat freak who likes to clean the house and is not interested in make up)  delivered really strong photos. Unfortunately she ran out of her magic and was soon eliminated. 

Singapore's Nicole Lee 

Compared to the first season, the girls from the second season had more girl drama in the model house (Courtesy of Janice Hermijanto of Indonesia) which of course always makes for an interesting show. 

Right before she was eliminated Marie Nakagawa from Japan revealed that one of the reasons she joined the competition was to prove that she can make it in the Modeling Industry despite of her being of African-American descent (as well as Japanese), through tears she revealed how it was hard to pursue modeling in Japan just because of her color and features. I really admired her for having that drive in her during the competition. 

Marie Nakagawa of Japan

You would think that in this 'seemingly' modern world, there are still instances where in we let, race, color and features define whether or not you can be successful in an industry. I want to believe that we have gone beyond race, culture and definition and that we strive for the best no matter what shape or form. Which is why I believe that Asia's Next Top Models is breaking barriers and redefining and challenging what has long been accepted or tolerated. 

Aspiring models in the show have said that 'modeling' is a profession frowned upon in their culture and that joining the show was their way of 'proving' themselves to their families'. 

Asian models with mixed lineages experienced being bullied as children just because they looked different.I admire how they were able to step up and step out of being bullied and were strong and determined enough to prove their tormentors otherwise.                 

The Fantastic Four - Resident Judges and Mentors: From Left to Right: Mike Rosenthal,Joey Mead-King,  Nadya Hutagalung and Adam Williams

Aside from a new base of operations, two new mentors made up the Fantastic Four of Judges of the series. Former model now celebrity and fashion photographer to the stars Mike Rosenthal and Movement Coach Adam Williams joined Head Judge Nadya Hutagalung and Model Mentor Joey Mead-King. 

I felt a bit sad, since Paul and I have developed a certain admiration and have been following Season 1 photographer and resident judge Todd Anthony Tyler. He even made a trip to the Philippines recently, unfortunately we were not able to meet him due to prior commitments. Hopefully next time we do! :) 

I had to literally stay away from Social Media (yes-it's possible) since I would only be able to catch the finale during it's encore, Thursday in the afternoon, since I had work Wednesday evening. 

During last year's finale I did mention in my blog post that I didn't have any particular favorite to win, that I would have been  happy if any one of the finalists (Jessica, Stephanie or Kate) won. But for this particular finale - pardon me if I do have a favorite because I did and I was rooting for anyone from Team Philippines to win. (Yup - I was just a tad bit being patriotic :P)

More than just a pretty face: Katarina was first critized for being 'just pretty' but she soon grew and blossomed in the competition. 

I wanted Katarina to win because she was a girl who dared to dream. She had no modeling experience whatsoever prior to joining the competition, aside from that she is also shorter and fuller than most models. A fact which I like since it dares to defy the traditional concept of a model - tall and skinny. I loved the fact that she was an underdog and that she defied the odds stacked up against her.     

The Levitating Princess- Jodilly in a gown by Alex Perry gives jump shot some style and glamour in this winning photo. 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Catch Game of Thrones on HBO Go!

In light of recent developments, straight-from-the-US broadcasts have allowed fans of TV series to watch their favorite shows without having to depend on illegal streams and downloads. 

I have prayed to the seven gods that Game of Thrones would be one of those TV shows but HBO is taking it to a whole different level with HBO GO! 

While the rest of the realm is preparing for the upcoming Season 4 premiere with hashtags like #TakeTheThrone and watching recaps of the last three seasons and probably organizing viewing parties for April 7's Season 4 premiere. Sky subscribers can also get in the action through HBO GO  - so just what is HBO GO - well, it's an amazing app that let's you stream amazing HBO original shows (aside from Game of Thrones) like The Sopranos, Band of Brothers, Six Feet Under and so much more! And aside from that with HBO GO installed on your laptop or mobile device you can actually catch Game Of Thrones 12 Hours After it's US release! :)     

To get you more excited check out the video below!  

Aside from simply getting to watch amazing original HBO productions you can also watch exclusive behind-the-scenes footage and production notes of your favorite TV series! :) 

Now, we all know that some content in HBO TV series can be well - not suitable for the faint hearted and young children well, fear not because there is actually a Parental Control feature which allows you to ensure your children don't watch anything they're not supposed to. So leaving the tablet lying around the house with HBO GO installed is not a sign of bad parenting. 

When the announcement of the new HBO GO came out - I really wanted to try it out - coz aside from being fans of Game Of Thrones (read the whole books and everything) Paul is also a big fan of other HBO Productions like The Sopranos, Six Feet Under and Band Of Brothers to name a few. (He is currently watching Season 1, Episode 1 of The Sopranos as I am typing this. 

So how do you download HBO GO? 

Well - it's really easy all you have to do is go to to register, you have to be a Sky Subscriber and have HBO :D 

You can also download the app on your smartphones and mobile devices. 

HBO GO was launched last March 10, 2014 - but Sky is letting its subscribers (SkyCable and SkyBroadband who have HBO Asia on their plan) get the HBO GO experience through a FREE trial until May 31, 2014

Yup! It read that right! You can enjoy over 1,000 hours of UNCUT and EXCLUSIVE HBO Original programs! Not to mention catch Season 4 of Game Of Thrones 12 hours after its US premiere! :D (Yeah, I know I mentioned that already but.....Game Of Thrones!!!!) 

Check out screenshots of my online registration to HBO GO below! :) 

Friday, April 4, 2014

Paramore Night 7

Philia front woman Arci Munoz reaching out to fans during Paramore Night 7

Apologies for the delay- we usually have an event up after a day or two but never like two weeks (since Paramore Night was last March 22) but work has been crazy kids - we're always doing Over Time so when we get home we're just too tired and sleep right away. Weekends have been dedicated to Graduation Ceremonies and celebrations since Paul and I have 3 people in our families graduating. So anyways - better late than never right? And these babies better get up the Internet soon since Paramore Night 8 is just around the corner ;)  

So let's get this party started shall we? 

Surely you've had friends contact you from time to time and invite you to a get together or a reunion once in a while. Well that's exactly how it is with what has become to be a genuine "Para"family.

Why do you think there would be a 7th Paramore Night if it's not a big success? 

When you go inside a bar for Paramore Night, people wave and greet at each other, hugs are exchanged, fist bumps and high fives are made. There are also well wishes such as Congratulations (on the Graduation), Congratulations on the engagement, Congratulations on the baby and words of caution as well: Wag masyado mag mosh - ang tahi (from a recent operation). That's all because we're all family, we're there for each other through the ups and downs in our lives and we all look out for each other. 

And if it's your first time to experience Paramore Night well you'd still be very much welcomed! There is even a usually a meet up in Cubao so that a whole group can go together. So even people coming from Pampanga would be able to journey to the venue no matter where it is in the Metro. 

For the 7th Paramore Night it was in 3rd Floor Bar in Cainta; which is really close to our place-so that's really good! :) During this particular Paramore night I had a thought about local bars - I guess it was because it was pointed out that Casa Nami where the First Paramore Night was held back in 2011 was already closed. I suddenly thought about the recently closed Freedom Bar (it's now District 2104) and Autonomy Bar which has closed as well. I kind of feel sad for these bars that had to close and I guess that there business is also a struggling and challenging business, just like music. Which is why those of us who are supporting these events and gigs should also look to supporting the bars and venues where they are held. 

Mewa Cawad of Mad Hatter Day showing the crowd how it's done and I have no idea what Tierro is doing there :P 

Being part of Sparks Productions I have an idea of what goes on organizing these events as well as the finances that go with it also. I know we all want gigs and events like these to continue, so with that in mind make sure that you also patronize the venues and the productions organizing the event. Invite friends and family to help with ticket sales. Order from the bar to help boost venue proceeds as well (Paul is just too happy to oblige ordering beer). 

I'd hate to think of a time when all these bars would be closed so let's make sure to keep that all in mind the next time we go to an event. :) 

So going back to Paramore Night 7 we were there early and were greeted by the hard working Mich Dimen from The Yellow Room, now if you've been following us on our social media sites you would probably recognize Mich since she has lots of photos on our pages :) that's coz she's also a vocalits for Southern Lights, Behind Those City Lights and now she's part of The Yellow Room team and has been doing her best to make events like Paramore Night 7 a big success! :)    

We were probably some of the first people in the Bar but a once empty bar was soon filled with familiar faces and friends. 

The show strated and was opened by the band Starecase and can I just say that the parents, family and friends of Vocalist Shelly coming by to see the show is just too cute! *Cue in my earlier point of inviting people to gigs and productions to support them :) The band had to play an extended set since they were still waiting for the next band to come - which was okay for the gang of course. 

Watching these guys go wild in the mosh pit - is like watching our children, nieces, nephews, younger cousins, cousins go wild. Seeing these guys, really, really enjoy the music my faith is renewed in this generation of device dependent kids who can't seem to put down their phones and tablets to actually experience music and life in general. 

Ain't it Fun? Paramore Nights sure are! 

Kids - a word of advice; you can always snap away a photo or take a video clip but make sure to put your phones and devices away to actually experience what is in front of you. Don't be one of those people who spend a whole concert holding a iPad up in the crowd so that the people behind you can't see coz your big ass iPad is blocking their view. One or two video clips is okay but not the whole event, trust me it's not cool and the people behind you don't like it either. So remember to experience the music, reliving it will be much better than watching a shaky video.  

:P There's always that familiarity which makes each Paramore Night special.But despite the familiarity there is always room for someone new - just ask my fellow Save Me Hollywood fans Cristine, Mj, Nico and the gang who had their first Paramore Night - it was wild! :) 

Although there was a little lost and found, surrendered then stolen iPod happening and a little Vandal Drama that happened. Just goes to show that 
you still have to be both aware and careful even in the company of friends, you never know when there will be a wolf in sheep's clothing. 

It was a great pleasure to have and witness the awesomeness that is Mad Hatter Day - they are really such an amazing OPM band that we can really be proud to call our very own! If you haven't checked them out yet - you should! Here's a link to their Finding Atlantis music video!