Review: The Wolf Of Wall Street

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The Wolf of Wall Street is about a young stockbroker called Jordan Belfort who began his Wall Street career as an intern at a highly reputed investment firm, before losing his job following the Market crash in 1987 “Black Monday”. However, the young and enthusiastic Belfort does not despair, and soon after being introduced to the world of penny stocks, starts making millions and decides to kick off his own business. He recruits some of his friends, including a drug dealer, and that’s where everything spins out of control. Drugs, Sex, Corruption, Dirty Money, Excessive spending, Crazy Parties, Excessive Substance abuse, Hot girls, Troubled family life etc …

Martin Scorsese made sure to document every aspect of Belfort’s rise and downfall by delivering a 3 hours long movie. Just like in Goodfellas, it’s a story about a young man working his way up to become rich and powerful, except this time it’s Wall Street and not the mob and the guys wear suits and work in offices.

There’s a bit of everything in this movie, from drama to humor to action, and I thought it was an absolutely thrilling and excellent movie! Leonardo DiCaprio played his character to perfection and deserves an Oscar for his performance (My favorite scene was when he’s totally wasted and crawling to his car). Belfort’s partners are hilarious and perfectly chosen too, specially Donnie Azoff who’s played by Jonah Hill. Naomi Lapaglia, Belfort’s wife is played by Margot Robbie and is unbelievably hot.

The movie earned an 8.7/10 on IMDb. Personally, I’d easily give it a 9/10.

Note: I unfortunately watched the censored version which is only 2 hours and 30 minutes long, but this post says the full version will start showing as of today in Lebanese theaters.

Lebanon – 1969

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Political crisis, No government and soon no president, Syrian involvement, weak Lebanese army, refugees and armed clans. All these were back in 1969 and are now present today. I am keeping my hopes up that it’s just a temporary phase and not the start of a new deadly civil war.

Watch the full report [Here].

«Cette semaine, alors que l’ONU institue officiellement le tribunal international chargé de poursuivre et juger les assassins de l’ancien Premier ministre libanais Rafik Hariri, la situation politique libanaise semble de plus en plus fragile.

Ce reportage d’une équipe de Temps Présent dans le Liban de 1969, sept ans avant la guerre civile, est intéressant à plus d’un titre et présente certaines similitudes avec la situation actuelle: crise politique, paralysie institutionelle, implication de la Syrie, pressions militaires israéliennes, faiblesse de l’armée nationale, ambiguïté sur la présence des fedayinns palestiniens dans les camps de réfugiés. Ces images exceptionnelles montrent bien l’ambiance de veillée de guerre qui va agiter le Liban durant des années, encouragée par des politiques jusqu’au boutiste et un accroissement du rôle des milices para-militaires à caractère confessionnel.

Pornographic Movies In Lebanese Theaters?

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The article states that the General Security in Lebanon reported various violations in Lebanese cinemas whereas minors were admitted into 18+ movies. I am assuming they’re talking about The Wolf Of Wall Street because when I went to see it, I saw a lot of kids going in to watch it.

Nevertheless, The movie is not a pornographic (إباحي) one as suggested in this website’s headline. The movie contains offensive language, few sex scenes and may be the sweariest movie of all time.

PS: The version of The Wolf Of Wall Street shown in Lebanese cinemas is 36 minutes shorter than the original one.

أكدت المديرية العامة للأمن العام أنها ضبطت مخالفات عدة في صالات السينما، حيث قام المسؤولون عنها بالسماح لقاصرين بمشاهدة أفلام لا تتطابق مع أعمارهم.

وصدر عن المديرية العامة للأمن العام البيان الآتي:
“في إطار الدوريات التي تقوم بها المديرية العامة للأمن العام على صالات السينما للتثبت من حسن تطبيق القوانين المرعية الإجراء في ما خص الإلتزام بقواعد تصنيف الأفلام حسب الفئات العمرية، ضبطت بنتيجة هذه الدوريات مخالفات في عدّة صالات قام المسؤولون عنها بالسماح لقاصرين بمشاهدة أفلام لا تتطابق أعمارهم على الفئات العمرية المسموح بها، وتم إخراج المخالفين من الصالات ونظّمت بحق مدرائها محاضر ضبط حسب التعليمات الإدارية.

إن المديرية العامة للأمن العام تدعو الأهالي الى التأكد مسبقاً من لائحة تصنيف الأفلام التي يود أولادهم تحت عمر الثامنة عشرة من مشاهدتها، كما تنبّه أصحاب الصالات السينمائية من مغبة مخالفة القرارات المتعلقة بتصنيف الأفلام التي يعاقب عليها القانون حفاظاً على سلامة النشء وأمن المجتمع”.

Are Malls In Lebanon Taking The Necessary Security Measures? The Answer is No!

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I was watching this TV report and laughing my ass off because I’ve been to 5 different malls in the past week, and none of them had taken extraordinary security measures given the recent bombings. In fact, I noticed that some malls are not taking the current situation Lebanon is going through seriously and are not even making the slightest effort in terms of security and prevention.

Here are the malls I’ve been to and what I’ve noticed:

ABC Dbayyeh & Achrafieh:
– They are still using defective bomb detectors at ABC.
– There’s an additional security inspection at ABC Dbayyeh for both men and women which is good.
– There are metal detectors at the ABC Achrafieh main Entrance (not sure about the other entrances) but you can walk or drive in from the parking and not get checked.
– You are not allowed to park anymore in front of ABC Achrafieh (on the way down from Sassine) which is also good.

Le Mall Dbayyeh
– They are still using defective bomb detectors.
– They use bomb-detection mirrors but the last time the mirror was broken!
– I didn’t notice any extra measures taken at both entrance doors but I can’t confirm.

City Mall
– They have some special bomb detector that I haven’t seen in any other mall and they check the trunk of the car.
– I can’t confirm whether they took extra safety measures at the entrance door which is good

Beirut Souks
This place is a security nightmare for the management and the authorities given that it is wide open and has numerous entrances, however:
– They are the only ones equipped with bomb-sniffing dogs.
– Unfortunately though, they are using defective bomb detectors but they have security members all over the souks.

Beirut City Centre:
– They are still using defective bomb detectors.
– I didn’t notice any additional security measures taken at the entrance door.

To sum things up, the security measures taken at malls in Lebanon are not enough to prevent (God Forbid) an explosion or an armed attack or whatsoever, and I can’t freaking believe that defective bomb detectors are still being used. I understand that no one’s doing well economically in Beirut these days but things would get much worse for all of us and specially malls if an unfortunate incident takes place there.

Here are few recommendations that I urge all malls mentioned above and others concerned to consider for boosting security and preventing potential criminal and terrorist acts:

– Throw these defective bomb detectors in the nearest garbage bin.
– Get Bomb-sniffing dogs and put them at every entrance.
– Get high quality and effective bomb scanners.
– Set up metal detectors at every entrance and make sure there’s an armed soldier or ISF officer nearby (To prevent armed attacks mainly).
– Schedule patrols around the parking lot for a security guard and a bomb sniffing dog every half hour.
– Set up a metal entrance gate far from the initial one. This would help limit the damage in case of a suicide bomber.
– Set up No Parking signs around the mall.

One more thing I’d like to see implemented, even though it’s a bit ambitious, is to have car plate numbers scanned to verify if the car is stolen or not. Technically speaking, it’s very easy and cheap to implement but it requires a lot of paper work and a collaboration between the ISF and third parties. The idea is that information related to black-listed or suspicious cars gets constantly updated and shared through an application or a platform that mall security personnel have access to. Even valet parking companies could help if they are able to detect suspicious cars and report them but I am not sure how trust-worthy these companies are.

Note: If you have further (verified) information regarding the security measures taken, please do share them and I will gladly update the post.

Al Sa’eh Tripoli Book Drive

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Let us all help rebuild Al Saeh Library by donating new or used English, Arabic, or French books. The book drive started today and will stay till January 31. The Lebanese Ministry of Culture showed its support today by donating 1000 books to the library.

Spread the message and let’s bring back to life this historic library!

Nokia Lumia 1020

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I’ve been waiting for months to get my hands on the Nokia Lumia 1020 and it’s finally here. I love taking pictures and my Samsung S4 camera is one of the best I’ve used so far, but I doubt that it will match the 1020’s six-lens 41-megapixel PureView camera paired with a Xenon flash.

Stay tuned as I will be posting a full review next week. I will also be posting throughout the week pictures on my Instagram @LeNajib.

PS: Instagram is available for Windows Phones now. It’s called Instagram Beta.