Saturday, October 19, 2013

Movie Review ... Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa


Alan Partridge Alpha Papa posterMovie adaptations of TV shows rarely work.  Often extended cinematic re-imaginings fail to grasp the essence of what made them so popular.  The British, however, have a good strike ratio with many small to big screen leaps becoming big hits.  ‘Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa’ should please fans.  Anchored by a strong but not overly long story, the character’s journey to filmic frolics is one of consistent hilarity.

Famous DJ Alan Partridge (Steve Coogan) is a man of the people.  Always fighting justice and providing empathy, he is a modest person.  At least that’s what he likes to believe.  The reality is very different especially when his radio station is taken over by a corporate giant.  A series of events finds Alan in the midst of a siege where his true personality surfaces for all to see.

Steve Coogan makes the most in transporting his famous character to screens.  Generally moving along at a good pace, ‘Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa’ enjoys skewering instant fame and idolatry.  The banality of commercial radio comes in for particular scorn as does the greed in profiteering from bad situations.  Front and centre is Partridge whose cowardly opportunism knows no bounds providing many laughs.

Some of the antics are very silly and conjure the ghost of the ‘Carry On’ films.  It’s a bit rude and crude but Coogan knows when to inject some wit enabling the film to rise above the norm.  Fellow performers including Colm Meaney and Sean Pertwee enter the spirit with similar glee.  None of it can be taken seriously and whilst occasionally the jokes fall flat there are others to replace it. 

‘Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa’ is fun with enough energy and enthusiasm to make it consistently amusing.  Long-term and new fans should enjoy the ridiculous scenarios with another big-screen outing potentially welcome.

  Alan Partridge Alpha Papa 654

Movie Review Rating out of 10:  7

Movie Review by Patrick Moore

Agree with Patrick's Movie Review? Then please use the comment box.

Patrick Moore's Movie Review is an alternative look at movie releases in Australia.

Official HomePage click HERE



Movie Review ... Captain Phillips


captain_phillips_posterIt’s said true-life tales are far more compelling than fictional ones.  How people untangle out of perilous situations can amaze and inspire.  The 2009 hijacking of a ship is an example.  Making world-wide headlines, the incident forms the basis of director Paul Greengrass’ latest movie.  ‘Captain Phillips’ sees his style of cinematic realism used to great effect.  As gripping as a factual piece should be, it becomes more enthralling than any imaginary story.

In 2009 the U.S. container ship Alabama was hijacked by Somali pirates.  In charge was Captain Richard Phillips (Tom Hanks).  Forced to deal with Somali pirate captain Muse (Barkhad Abdi), his leadership skills were sorely tested.  Taken hostage, Phillip had to negotiate a way to save the lives his crew and himself.  Building a dangerous but needful relationship with Muse, events which followed would force both to confront their fears.

Embodying the ingredients of captivating dramas, ‘Captain Phillips’ delivers.  Much of this goes to both Hanks and director Paul Greengrass who expertly convey the claustrophobic tension.  Whilst elements may have been changed to craft a watchable narrative, it is easy feeling the ordeal Phillips went through.  How he attempted to appease the hijackers showed great courage and fortitude.

It’s this character strength that makes Hanks’ performance memorable.  Although revealing the despair displayed at his predicament, Hanks injects the necessary conviction making his role believable.  He is well served by a solid cast and strong direction maximising the drama.  Occasionally over-long, ‘Captain Phillips’ is never less than enthralling with the navy’s tactical manoeuvring in saving Phillips’ life equally absorbing.

Again proving real life tales have nothing on fictional ones, ‘Captain Phillips’ inspires as well as excites.  Using an interesting technique of looking at both sides of the stand-off, it’s a thought-provoking film making the most of its talents.


Movie Review Rating out of 10:  8

Movie Review by Patrick Moore

Agree with Patrick's Movie Review? Then please use the comment box.

Patrick Moore's Movie Review is an alternative look at movie releases in Australia.

Official HomePage click HERE



Movie Review ... Prisoners


prisoners poster‘Prisoners’ poses moral questions few movies rarely ask.  How one would react in certain circumstances? How far we would go? The answers are disturbingly realised in ‘Prisoners’.  Directed with steely intensity by Denis Villeneuve, the dark exploration of sex offenders and how their actions shatter lives is finely handled.  Actors deliver sterling renditions of characters caught in this quagmire while hunting an elusive foe.

When his young daughter and friend go missing, Keller (Hugh Jackman) becomes frantic.  Fearing the worst he turns to police detective Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal) for help.  Chasing leads and identifying potential suspects, Loki’s efforts continually hit a dead-end.  Determined to discover what happened, Keller takes matters into his own hands.  With time running out and tension mounting, the search for the truth takes many unexpected turns.

‘Prisoners’ continually grips despite often being difficult viewing.  This is due to a compelling story allowed to breathe.  This is a slow-burning movie with each clue building the foreboding atmosphere.  In their own ways, the characters become what they most fear.  All are trapped within their own prisons due to rage, guilt, fear or determination.  Those qualities drive their agenda with varying degrees of personal devastation.

Villeneuve ensures there is no room for compromise which assists in maintaining realism.  Everyone lives in a continually bleak world with good news a rarity.  The great cinematography and score highlight supports the overall storyline and mood.  Gyllenhaal and Jackman play their characters admirably with great performances that don’t become melodramatic.  You genuinely feel their angst at their various discoveries as the line between becoming a crusader or monster increasingly blurred.

Despite exploring harsh themes ‘Prisoners’ is compelling.  Raising issues demanding to be questioned, making audiences think about what’s on screen is a marker any quality production should try to reach.


Movie Review Rating out of 10:  8

Movie Review by Patrick Moore

Agree with Patrick's Movie Review? Then please use the comment box.

Patrick Moore's Movie Review is an alternative look at movie releases in Australia.

Official HomePage click HERE



Thinking Renovation 19 October







A Phyllis Diller Moment







Trivia Bits 19 October


  • The ears of the cricket are located on its front legs.
  • The Formula One championships in 1959, 1960 and 1966 were won by Jack Brabham.
  • In the novel by Boris Pasternak the first name of Dr Zhivago was Yuri.
  • The total sum of the strings on the violin, viola and cello are 13.
  • A woman is only a woman but a good cigar is a smoke are on the poem The Betrothed by Rudyard Kipling.
  • One meaning of the word Breach is to violate a law or contract.
  • Viticulture is the science of growing grapes with the science of wine making being Oenology.
  • A nick-name for the famed Sydney Harbour Bridge is the coat hanger.
  • The Puerto Rican Trench is the deepest part of the Atlantic Ocean.
  • Cauchin, Spider and Colobous are types of monkeys.
  • British monarch Queen Elizabeth II was born on April 21, 1926.
  • The well known Arabic word for The Island or The Peninsula is Al Jazeera.
  • Internationally known Australian cricketer Sir Donald Bradman was born in Cootamundra in New South Wales.
  • US cultural anthropologist Margaret Mead wrote the book Coming of Age in Samoa.
  • The profession of Wilbur Post (Alan Young) in the TV situation comedy Mr Ed was an architect.

Saturday … Yay!



Quotables 19 October



Friday, October 18, 2013

Thinking Renovation 18 October







This World … Spectacular Waterfalls







Just For Fun 18 October





More Palindromes

A PALINDROME is a word or sentence that reads the same backwards and forwards

    • E. Borgnine drags Dad's gardening robe.
    • Ed, I saw Harpo Marx ram Oprah W. aside.
    • Egad! No bondage!
    • Emil, a sleepy baby peels a lime.
    • Eros? Sidney, my end is sore.
    • Eva, can I stab bats in a cave?
    • Evil olive.
    • Flesh! Saw I Mimi wash self!
    • Go hang a salami, I'm a lasagna hog.
    • God saw I was dog.
    • God! A red nugget! A fat egg under a dog!
    • Golf? No sir, prefer prison flog.

Movie Review ... Anna Karenina


anna karenina posterFilmed many times, Leo Tolstoy’s 1877 novel has endured.  It’s hardly surprising given it features the ingredients movies crave.  Passion, love and loss all provide an enticing brew drawing audiences as its multiple re-workings attest.  Crafting a modern take on the classic tale, this latest version benefits from Tolstoy’s still stirring tale.

Anna Karenina (Keira Knightley) is a wealthy socialite living with her husband Alex (Jude Law).  Asked to intervene in saving her brother’s marriage, little does she know of the chain reaction it starts.  During this crisis she meets Count Alexi (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) who changes her life forever.  Walking a dangerous path among the echelons of Russian high society, she learns the tyranny of desire waiting to trap those daring to claim it.

One thing that can be said of Joe Wright’s direction of ‘Anna Karenina’ is that it has plenty of dynamic flair.  From the first to last frame viewers observe the action within the confines of a stage production.  Whilst off-putting at first, this succeeds in conveying the pure drama and shifting nature of relationships.  Occasionally the striking visuals smother much needed emotional depth hindering its overall impact, although the unfolding events are consistently arresting.

If the scenery is over-whelming at times, the contrast between Anna’s relationships and that of her brother maintains interest.  How they deal with the consequences of their actions is effectively handled as is the nature of how fluid one’s standing in life can instantly change.  The cast give mostly fine performances even if Knightley and Taylor-Johnson seem a little too young to carry off the gravitas their roles need.

There may be better versions although ‘Anna Karenina’ has enough original touches to make it stand out.  The passion of Tolstoy’s work is still shown no matter what technical tricks are used in expressing it with his classic tale still resonating centuries later.


Movie Review Rating out of 10:  7

Movie Review by Patrick Moore

Agree with Patrick about his Movie Review? Then please use the comment box, titling your comments with Movie Review Anna Karenina

Patrick Moore's Movie Review is an alternative look at current movie releases in Australia.

Official HomePage click HERE





Cool Images 18 October








A Paulette Goddard Moment







Trivia Bits 18 October


  • In Athletics, the Barr test confirms the gender of the athlete.
  • When a cricket umpire raises both arms horizontally, he is indicating that that ball is wide.
  • The numeric term Twenty-Twenty describes perfect vision and a form of the game of cricket.
  • Appropriately That’s All Folks is written on the gravestone of Warner Brothers cartoonist Mel Blanc.
  • Grand Mal and Petit Mal are forms of the medical condition Epilepsy.
  • You would have your exact double if you had seen your Doppelganger.
  • The term per diem means per day.
  • Misogyny is the hatred or contempt of women and girls, but Misandry is the hatred or contempt of men and boys.
  • The young of the salmon is called Smolt.
  • The French cartoon skunk Pepe le Pew was madly in love with a reluctant cat.

Vintage Vanity Fair Covers










Quotables 18 October