‘The Martian’ in Global Cinemas.

Global-Cinemas_Logo_Final-01

So I recently watched “The Martian” in 3D in Global Cinemas (Weija) and it was spectacularly awesome. I will give my very short review in a bit, but first let me pat Global Cinemas on the back.

They are doing a very good job and this boy is impressed.

They’ve taken the best ingredients of the killer cinema experience, mixed it up and well…brewed up the “killer cinema experience”.
They’ve got the location, the price (that hits the sweet spot right on the jaw), the great service, the sound, the 3D…and did I mention the sound?

Gosh I love the sounds in the cinema.

So, Global Cinemas. Chances are you haven’t heard much about them and if you have, good on you because, aside their severely unimaginative billboards I heard practically nothing about them. That basically means one of two things; either I am a reclusive hermit or Global Cinemas didn’t pump enough money into advertising. For the sake of argument, let’s just say the latter is the reason for my lack of knowledge.

Unless there’s a law in Ghana that limits advertising for movie houses, I don’t see why Global Cinemas is flicking around glass marbles when a powerhouse like Silverbird is dropping metal balls.

“Global Cinemas, never underestimate the power of advertising…in whatever shape or form.”

Let’s leave it at that. Hopefully, they will come for my services. I work for an advertising agency y’know! *Subtle Suggestion* **wink**

Anywho, Global Cinemas has now taken root in Functions (Weija), the same building that once housed Silverbird. They (Silverbird) left Functions because of West Hills and almost a year down the line, I’m glad they did.

With Global Cinemas now in charge of the outfit, the interior and exterior have seen some slight changes. On the exterior, there’s now a “Global Cinemas” nameplate and a new entrance. Nothing too shabby.
Step inside though and you will soon realize Global Cinemas wants to cozy you up.
To put it subtly, there’s a lounge in the lobby now, and whiles that might not seem like a big deal, you should know the previous occupants offered no sitting area (save for the videogame area) for waiting customers.

This invariably drove out the very patient customers into the clutches of neighboring fast-food restaurants…and these restaurants will gladly let you sit and wait only after you’ve placed an order.

“Hmmm! In hindsight, I guess it was a fruitful “partnership”.

Talking about fast-food restaurants around Global Cinemas…well, let’s just say they are not in short supply; from Starbites to Wichburger, there’s a place for almost everyone.

So all things considered, I think the lounge is a welcome addition even though I doubt I’ll ever need it, since I am an on-the-dot kinda guy.

The service isn’t bad either although I fear employee-complacency might ruin that part of the experience. This happens way too often in Ghana.

“A new place opens and all the attendants can’t stop smiling at you or fussing all over you…like a bunch of guys fawning over a fresh girl in a new school.
A few months down the road though and no one cares about you or what you want; they will serve you when they serve you…so chill out!”

I am not calling doom on Global Cinemas but no surprises here when that happens.
We are in Ghana after all.

INTO THE CINEMA
The structure of the cinema itself hasn’t changed and I don’t know if that is good or bad, so mum’s the word.

One area has changed though, and that is the sound.

It might be new speakers, different equalizer presets or a mere volume increase. All I’ll say is ‘Global Cinemas, thank you for whatever you did’.

When Silverbird once occupied the place, I’d always complain about the sound…heck! I still do (West Hills and Accra Mall).
It was too tame, too subtle and way too flat. It almost felt as though they didn’t want us to enjoy the movie. Their sounds never reached cinema-level awesomeness.
Global Cinemas on the other hand is trying to blow out and destroy your eardrums…and I love it. That is how it is supposed to be.

Bad movie or not, I want to exit a cinema knowing I got my monies worth and that is what Global Cinemas accomplishes with the sounds.

With that said, the overall cinematic experience of Global Cinemas is but a few fist pumps away from perfection and since perfection is an elusive unicorn, we better let it go and jump into the negatives plaguing Global Cinemas.

“Time for the negatives! I love me some negatives.”

 

As good as Global Cinemas is at the moment, they have some issues desperately begging for attention and the biggest offender is their lackluster movie lineup.

There’s only so much good pricing and exceptional sound can do, and the sad thing is, Global Cinemas isn’t doing much to impress us (as far as movies are concerned).
Yeah you will find a blockbuster movie in there once in a while…but take out that movie and the lineup gets severely anemic.

“I speak for a lot of people when I say we need more blockbuster movies.”

If it’s a battle of movie rights, beat Silverbird; it’s that simple.

Variety is the spice of life but in this case, variety gives Global Cinemas more customers and more money.

Next on my list of negatives is the uneven shades in the projection screen (in the 3D screening room). It is a minor niggle at best but it’s something that can’t be unseen…and once you are aware, it detracts from the entire experience.
More so for a 3D movie where the entire movie experience is predicated on the viewer thinking they are a part of it. The illusion is thus broken when the viewer is always conscious of the uneven nature of the screen. It is very jarring. It needs to be fixed pronto.

All these issues are easily fixable (by my reasoning), so if after a week or two I find them still present, disappointment will sink in.

So that’s that for Global Cinemas; Great place, great ambiance, great pricing…just beef up your movie lineup, fix your uneven projection screen and presto, all will be well.

Now, let’s do my review of The Martian…but you know what, go watch it and we will discuss it. Hehe :).

Let me know when you are done.

PS: The Global Cinemas’ website and mobile app feel broken. Empty pages, really old movie posters and broken links are the ones I care about…and yeah, a portion of the website leads to Silverbird’s promotions page (click on any of the three squares).
Jeez Global Cinemas, you can do better.

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How the National Service Scheme is Failing GHANA!

ghana_national_service_scheme_gnssThere won’t be any fancy intro…no word-plays or puns. I’ll jump straight to the point;
The National Service Scheme is a big mess and a major failure to Ghana.

It baffles me how little Ghanaians in power care about Ghana. They spew such hypocritical nonsense about how they are trying their best to make situations better but we know they are just yanking our chains. From Ministers to Presidents, no one truly cares about Ghana anymore.

We are down, they keep kicking us but we are just too numb to even care.

Give greedy people power they’ve always wanted for eons and what you get is the Ghanaian Government (Past and Present). We get heavier in the mud whiles they get richer and fatter in their penthouse suites.

There’s mismanagement (ECG, Doctors and Cedi) in every facet of the Ghanaian Government but my area of concern for this post is the mismanagement of the National Service Scheme.

“How is the National Service Scheme mismanaged?” you say!
The recent scandals speak volumes. Go here, here and here.

The potential of the National Service Scheme is particularly outstanding, but the people at the top only want more money and further gain perfection in the art of Nepotism.

Each year the Ghanaian Government has over 70000 able-bodied people at its disposal through the National Service Scheme. These people have atop their generic skillset, specialized skills they’ll “use” later on in life. So, why is this goldmine of resources wasted every single year by the government.

Instead of a more targeted approach at posting National Service personnel, the Government covers both eyes and let the stones fall where they may (albeit with some exceptions).
Students with nepotistical family members in the Government rest easy because, they know “fate” is on their side. The unfortunate ones on the other hand invariably get the short end of the stick.

That is basically the story of the NSS;
the “connected” get great placements whiles the linear…well…they get the hard life in villages that have virtually no cellphone reception.

That’s hardly fair!

The men and women who run government organizations do so as they see fit because they feel no real obligation or accountability to us Ghanaians. Well, truth be told, we don’t really expect much from them either…and thus, they don’t care to work more efficiently.

The Pressure no dey!

We’ve been fed up to the back teeth for so long we just don’t give a hoot no more.

It’s been said and it’s been proven that Ghanaian Government workers are lazy and show an extreme lack of initiative, and when they do, it is to fatten up their coffers.

The NSS under the “NSS Act” aims to compulsorily give students the opportunity to make/give meaningful contributions to the government, but at the end of their service, these students are left with an overwhelming sense of void since they give back nothing substantial to their country. All because of poor placements.

Goto the official NSS website and they throw such nice descriptions at you;
“…it has its origins in the desire and demands of Ghanaian Youth for early opportunities to participate in shaping the destiny of our country.”

Yet, year after year the impact of the NSS on the country is negligible at best.
If you take the time to research and examine the notable accomplishments of the vaunted National Service Scheme, you’d be hard-pressed to find anything actually noteworthy.

Talk indeed is cheap and in the end, these NSS personnel have been reduced to just sanitary workers (Go here and here).

With Great Power comes Little Responsibility (to Ghanaians).”

Dear Ghana Government, I don’t understand why my beloved, a petroleum engineer, should be posted to a rural area as a teacher, when her skill-set would be better utilized if she were posted to an industry where she can make actual contributions to the industry and the country as a whole.

If you do admit we are all made for different professions, why then do you tie our hands and push us into dark pits?

WHAT THEN ARE MY RECOMMENDATIONS?

Sorry, RECOMMENDATION; I will give only one area a more targeted approach in deploying personnel will see great results, and if the government likes the idea, they can think of many more…because in the end, they don’t pay me.

MY RECOMMENDATION:
Government can re-purpose old facilities and outfit them with hundreds/thousands of desktop computers.
Conversely, they can dip a hand into an unknown fund and put up such a structure.
We know they can.

The configuration will be nothing fancy; Pentium 4 processors, 1gb of RAM and 80gb HDD.
To reduce the load on these computers, only one suite of application will be installed on them: Microsoft Office.

At these facilities spread across major cities in Ghana, shortlisted people on the National Service Scheme will be given the seemingly simple task of typing out records kept by all relevant Government agencies.
Since the possibility of encountering confidential information is relatively high, anyone who is even remotely involved will be given Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA’s) to sign.
If severely confidential information must be typed out, it can be assigned to carefully selected and screened individuals.
That way, they can effectively muzzle any Anas Aremeyaw Anas wannabees in the facility.

At periodic intervals, the typed info (digital copy) will be collected by the relevant Government Agencies and then backed up online.

Even with the mind-boggling advancements in the technological sphere, it just beats my mind how Government agencies in Ghana still rely on “Pen&Paper”.
Mountains of handwritten records plague every part of Government.
How do they back up the information? Well, they don’t.
And when the fires come…and they always come, they lament on the wealth of information lost to the fires.

But why should that be?
As evidenced by the recent floods, it quite clear that Ghana does not plan for the worst-case-scenario.
We just go with the flow.

The sad part is, the big men all lay down plans that can actually work but when power corrupts them, everything is tossed into the bin until they need votes.

Ghana Government please save the trees…and at least pretend as though you give two hoots about the environment.
Also, you can use my simple but effective example as a template, then base future NSS postings on it, instead of your archaic system.

Cos, in the end, I believe this approach can give the NSS a fresh perspective on handling postings and a renewed interest from  those undertaking it or are yet to.

 

PS: I’d really like to believe the Government thought of something similar to what I am proposing but were just too lazy in its implementation.
(Pls don’t sue me!) 😀

Hello world!

Hello-World“Hello World.”
Even though generic, i find it an apt title for the first post on a beginners blog.
The first of many to come, I know it is nothing extraordinary and I really hope people reading this don’t expect in my writing genius only seen achieved by Shakespeare and his merry compatriots.
*Playing the honesty card* I am very excited about this blog; it’s either it goes big and I get attention (cos lets face it, i need it) or it fails and get my butt handed to me…but I don’t really fear the last bit because most people wont recognize me :).
Lets just say this will be my “humble beginnings”.

So the question should be asked, “WHY START THIS BLOG?
Simply put, I want to bore the world with my “rants”, annoy actors and musicians in my country (and possibly outside too),talk about random stuff and share my general ideologies about a better ummmm…world?
OK!! forget the last part. We’ve all heard it a million times. Well, don’t totally forget it, cos i do have some nice ideas/ideologies.

With that said, I pray God guides my fingers and my thoughts on this project.
AMEN!

YOSH!! Ikimashou!


NOTE: I don’t do politics. Yeah…there’s that too.