Sue’s Christmas Recommendations

QUT Library has so many Christmas movies, books and TV shows to get you into the festive mood. We have asked some our librarians what their all time favourite Christmas movies and books were. Here is what Sue recommends!

The Polar Express (2005) Available on DVD or online via Click View (QUT Login required)

Continuing our theme of best loved Christmas movies, make sure you get hold of The Polar Express before everyone else does.  Bit of a heads up, though – do yourself a favour and read the original, award winning, children’s picture book  by Chris Van Allsburg first so as to fully appreciate the lavish, darkly-themed artwork that became the inspiration for the movie.

What’s it about? Having reached an age where he doubts that Santa is real, a young boy (we never learn his name) wakes suddenly on Christmas Eve to see a mysterious steam train in the falling snow outside of his bedroom. Imagine his amazement when he realises that the train is waiting for him to board, ready for their journey to the North Pole! This movie is not like other Christmas films.  It has a magical, shadowy quality which characterises it, just like the beautiful full-page illustrations found in the original book.  It is this that appeals to me so strongly.  My children and I enjoyed reading the book together for several years before the movie’s release in 2004 and I was delighted that the film remains so stylistically true to the book’s artwork.

The movie is a 3D animation using motion capture and is entered in the Guinness World Book of Records as being the world’s first all-digital capture film.  The music is amazing, featuring an original score by Alan Silvestri along with many well-loved Christmas favourites.

I would recommend this movie for children aged perhaps 7+ as it may be a bit dark for the littlies.  Having said that, this is a heart-warming, powerful and endearing movie that continues to be a seasonal favourite at our house.

Tom’s Christmas Recommendations

QUT Library has a wealth of Christmas movies, books and TV shows to get you into the festive mood. We have asked some our librarians what their all time favourite Christmas movies and books were. Here is what Tom thinks!

Arthur Christmas (2011)  Available on EduTV via Informit (QUT log in required)

This is the movie that is currently in my ‘must see’ Christmas movie rotation list, and absolutely love showing it to friends that have never seen it before.  Arthur Christmas is a 3D animated film by Aardman Animations (the same folks who brought us Wallace and Gromit) that portrays the legacy of Santa Clause as a very real, and very secret, family business with the title of ‘Santa’ being handed down from father to son for centuries.  The humour is wonderfully British and ranges from the very silly to some darker adult jokes, whilch leads to some great scenes such as an army of elves questioning the existence of children, and a European Union-esque security alliance scrambling predator drones when they mistake Santa’s sleigh as an invading alien spaceship.  The characters are voiced by all of your favourite English actors including James McAvoy, Hugh Laurie, Bill Nighy, Jim Broadbent and Imelda Staunton.  In the end this movie is about family, the spirit of Christmas, keeping tradition, breaking tradition, and wrapping presents with only three bits of tape.

The Snowman (1982) Available to borrow from QUT Library

The Snowman holds a very special place in my childhood, as my family would watch it every Christmas Eve, in the dark, with only the coloured glow of our Christmas tree to light up the room.  It is a gorgeous, animated short film, based on the picture book by Raymond Briggs, which tells the story of a small boy who builds a snowman that comes to life at the stroke of midnight.  They go on a series of small adventures including a magical flight to the North Pole, where they meet Father Christmas at a party full of other living snowmen.  Remarkably, the film is completely wordless and relies on music and animation to tell its story.  It never fails to bring a tear to my eye, especially during the enchanting song “Walking In The Air”, and the tale’s sad and bittersweet ending.  It won a BAFTA and an Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film. Here is a trailer for one of the more recent sequals to The Snowman, The Snowman & The Snow Dog.

We have even more to recommend so keep an eye out for more blogs with Christmas cheer!

 

Semester Break is here!

It’s that time of year again where all you have to do rest, recuperate and have some fun. Even though you may not need to use the library to find information for your assignments or to borrow your text books, while on holiday there are still a lot of fun things you can access at the Library to make your semester break even better!

Did you know you can borrow and play computer games? Borrow your favourites for the holiday and play all you want. Kelvin Grove Library even has Xbox One and PS4 consoles available to use in the Games Lab on level 4. The most popular games are already installed on these so you can get playing straight away!

You can also settle in and borrow or stream the movies you have been dying to see and the TV shows you need to catch up on, all through QUT Library. Watch Star Wars: The Force Awakens, get started watching Vikings or re-watch Game of Thrones Season 6 to prepare for the upcoming season. There are so many feature films and TV series to watch semester break won’t be long enough!

Want to rest your eyes from all the screens around you? Don’t forget you can borrow novels from the library too. This includes young adult fiction, found in the Curriculum Collection, and graphic novels too. Plus we have three great eBook platforms, including BorrowBox, Axis 360 and Overdrive fiction collection, where you can find audiobooks as well as some more great reading material.

Now you are all set to enjoy your semester break to the fullest. From all of us at QUT Library, stay safe, have fun and we will see you soon!

 

Library Christmas Closure & Summer Entertainment

QUT Library is taking a holiday! From Saturday 24th December until Monday 2nd January all QUT Libraries will be closed. Our website has all the details. But don’t fret if you want to get some extra study time in over the holiday season, the 24 hour labs at Gardens Point and Kelvin Grove will still be open.

If you think you will suffer from library withdrawal remember we have loads of resources available to you online. This includes our databases to help with any summer semester information needs, our videos to keep you entertained over the break and our eBook collection for those who want to get into their summer reading. Our top picks for this summer are –

  • christmas-1073705_640Die Hard – This action packed movie is a Christmas classic!
  • A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens novel as an audio book makes it easy to get into the festive season.
  • Day Boy – Read a new take on vampires from a local Brisbane author.
  • A Walk in the Woods – The comedian Bill Bryson takes you on a hilarious hike.
  • 10 Things I Hate About You – Based on Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew, this is a must watch movie!

But remember, if you want to borrow any library books or DVD in hard copy or speak to a librarian make sure to contact us before December 24th.

From all of us at QUT Library we wish you a safe and happy holiday season!

 

A Little Bit of Magic in the Library

harry-potter-418108_640Exams are nearly over, university is almost finished for another semester and all you want to do is relax. We couldn’t agree more, especially if you can add a little bit of magic to your summer!

With the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, from the world of Harry Potter, being released on the 17th November now is a great time to renew or start your Harry Potter experience. QUT Library has a range of different resources to help you fill your pensieve with many magical memories.

Apparate into Kelvin Grove or Caboolture libraries and check out one of JK Rowling’s books You can borrow the original seven part Harry Potter series, The Cursed Child screenplay and even the beautiful picture book of Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone. What better way is there to meet Harry, Ron, Hermione and the rest of the Hogwarts gang?

Swish and flick the mouse on your computer and you stream Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets and other movies straight away. Or Accio a piece of magic home and borrow a Harry Potter DVD.

There is a lot of magic at your fingertips at QUT Library that you can discover and enjoy at home or on campus. And the best part? You don’t have to wait for a Hogwarts letter to access all the magic you want!books-791923_640

Halloween stories in the library!

Halloween is almost upon us and what a perfect time to delve into the spooky areas of our library collection to see what you can borrow to scare your friends!

The House on the Hill by Kyle Mewburn & illustrated by Sarah Davis is available to borrow from the Kelvin Grove and Caboolture Curriculum Collections. It is a rhyming picture book for students in primary school, but there is no reason adults can’t enjoy it too.

American Horror Story is a spooky television series to get into if you haven’t already and nothing beats a few episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Of course, nothing beats reading a good book from the king of horror – from Carrie to The Shining and The Dark Tower series, there is always something to read from the prolific and deliciously unsettling Stephen King.

Don’t forget we have many Ebook collections for you to find a thrilling scare and if you’re looking for online videos we have access to The Darkside a film retelling various Indigenous ghost stories from around Australia.

Do you have any suggestions for scary Halloween stories? Let us know your favorite author or story in the comments.