Saturday, June 13, 2015

Trivia Bits 13 June


 minivan Kia Pregio

The rear-wheel drive minivan Pregio (pictured) was made by Kia Motors from November 1995 until the beginning of 2006.

Fort Ville-Marie was a fortress outpost of France in North America and is the historic nucleus around which the original settlement of Montreal grew with the site of the fort was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1924.

The Emancipation Oak located on the campus of Hampton University is where the Virginia Peninsula's black community gathered in 1863 to hear the first Southern reading of President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation.

In the Ulster Cycle of Irish mythology, Ness' son Conchobar mac Nessa was brought up as the son of the druid Cathbad, although the true father may have been her lover, Fachtna Fáthach, the High King of Ireland.

The coffee filter was invented in 1908 by a German homemaker, Melitta Benz, when she lined a tin cup with blotter paper to filter the coffee grinds.

A satirical, patriotic song popular in Britain in World War II, Don't Let's Be Beastly To The Germans was composed by Noël Coward and although popular when performed live the humour did not translate well over the wireless and caused some fuss, leading the BBC to ban the song.

The Tigris River flows through the three countries of Turkey, Syria and Iraq and is 1,850 km long.

Nicky Ferris, played by Hayley Mills, in the 1963 American Walt Disney Productions movie The Moon-Spinners was held prisoner in a windmill with the movie based on the 1962 suspense novel by Mary Stewart.

Australian tennis players Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde, known as The Woodies, are the most successful men's doubles pair in history, winning a record six Wimbledon titles.

The top half of the flag of the Ukraine is blue and is a banner of two equally sized horizontal bands of blue and yellow colour, which symbolise the clear blue sky over yellow wheat field.

Quotables 13 June



Friday, June 12, 2015

Movie Review ... Jurassic World


Jurassic_World_poster‘Jurassic World’ proves franchises never die.  Like dinosaurs, they lie dormant until being re-discovered by new generations.  The fourth in the lucrative series successfully harks back to the original’s sense of wonder.  Discarding the sequel’s darkness, ‘Jurassic World’ is a fun and sometimes scary return of beasts that time forgot.  Money has been well spent with the CGI monoliths ready to chew their prey and rake in more box office dollars.

The island, Isla Nublar, has witnessed a hive of mayhem.  Twenty-two years after a group were terrorised by dinosaurs, it now hosts a fully functional theme park.  Using the pre-historic creatures as figures of familial fun, the park’s staff is kept busy.  Owen (Chris Platt) warns the operations manager Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) of impending danger.  Becoming true, the beasts slowly rebel against their captivity with hell on earth unleashed in unanticipated fury.

Graced with a predictable plot and average acting, ‘Jurassic World’ may not have much going for it.  Those well versed in Jurassic Park-lore know exactly what to expect.  But it’s this expectation which makes ‘Jurassic World’ almost comforting viewing.  The miracle isn’t in seeing the impressive looking dinosaurs it’s in seeing how the writers come up with something new.  For the most part they provide an entertaining return to a franchise which went off the rails in previous instalments.

‘Jurassic World’ doesn’t have the same impact of the first film which would have been impossible to top.  It does have better characters and an interesting array of creatures lovingly rendered by CGI boffins.  The action sequences are excitingly staged with Platt and Howard conveying genuine chemistry.  Their skills lead the narrative through some slow patches with Colin Trevorrow’s direction occasionally leaden paced.  The huge finale is suitably spectacular however leaving one to ponder if the age of movie dinosaurs has returned.

‘Jurassic World’ doesn’t offer earth-shattering viewing although as a slice of entertainment for general audiences it works.  Nothing more could have been demanded from a franchise’s fourth entry with this offering sure to take a huge bite out of the box office.

Jurassic World 887

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.


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Trivia Bits 12 June


  Eugene Cernan

The last words spoken from the moon were from Eugene Cernan (pictured), Commander of the Apollo 17 Mission on 11 December 1972, As we leave the Moon at Taurus-Littrow, we leave as we came, and, God willing, we shall return, with peace and hope for all mankind.

Renaissance German-Dutch composer, instrumentalist and copyist Pierre Alamire was also a spy for Henry VIII, until he was revealed as a double agent for the pretender to the English throne, Richard de la Pole, who mainly resided in Metz, northeast France.

Due to rail gauge differences while travelling by train from Sydney to Perth prior to 1970 five train changes were needed

Australian actor Russell Crowe made his directorial debut with the 2014 Australian historical fictional drama film The Water Diviner had its world premiere at the State Theatre in Sydney, Australia on December 2, 2014.

In 1947, the 22nd Amendment to the US Constitution limited future presidents to two terms. with the last US President to serve 4 terms being Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

With a height of 3,724 metres (12,218 ft), Mount Cook/Aoraki is located on the South Island of New Zealand and consists of three summits lying slightly south and east of the main divide, the Low Peak, Middle Peak and High Peak, with the Tasman Glacier to the east and the Hooker Glacier to the west.

Omega is the 24th and last letter of the Greek alphabet with capital being Ω, lowercase ω and in Greek Ωμέγα.

In a human cell, there are 23 chromosomes.

Rooibos tea is traditionally grown in the African country of South Africa and it is common to prepare rooibos tea in the same manner as black tea and add milk and sugar to taste with other methods include a slice of lemon and using honey instead of sugar to sweeten.

In 1915, Miss Kate Cocks and Miss Annie Ross became the first women in Australia to be appointed as police constables when they joined the South Australian Police force.

Quotables 12 June



Thursday, June 11, 2015

Trivia Bits 11 June


 Johnny Weissmuller and Maureen OSullivan in Tarzan and His Mate 1934

Maureen O'Sullivan (pictured with Johnny Weissmüller), an Irish actress best known for playing Jane in the Tarzan series of films starring Johnny Weissmüller, has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6541 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California, facing the star of Johnny Weissmuller.

American David Sanborn is best known for playing the saxophone with his solo recordings typically blend jazz with instrumental pop and R&B.

Australia has an area of about 7,600,000 sqkm which is large enough to swallow all of Europe and Turkey and Scandinavia giving Australia a coastline of about 36,700km.

Playing the fictional MI6 agent James Bond in the 1963 movie From Russia with Love was Sean Connery with President John F. Kennedy naming Ian Fleming's novel From Russia with Love among his ten favourite books of all time in Life magazine.

Voiced by Kate Harbour, a Bobsville resident Mrs Broadbent is a neighbourhood friend of popular children’s character Bob the Builder

Spanish fideo is a type of pasta commonly used in soups and can be short, about 2–3 cm, or longer.

Marie Antoinette was the wife of French King Louis XVI and was born an Archduchess of Austria, was Dauphine of France from 1770 to 1774 and Queen of France and Navarre from 1774 to 1792 and has become major cultural icon associated with high glamour, wealth and a certain style of life based on luxury and celebrity appealing today to the social and cultural elite.

In relation to mobile phone network cards, the acronym SIM stands for Subscriber Identity Module and is an integrated circuit that securely stores the international mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) and the related key used to identify and authenticate subscribers on mobile telephony devices.

American singer, songwriter, musician, and record producer Bob Gaudio was a member of the band Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons where he was the keyboardist/backing vocalist.

In the 1920’s Dutch painter Piet Mondrian evolved a non-representational form which he termed neoplasticism consisting of white ground, upon which was painted a grid of vertical and horizontal black lines and the three primary colours.

Quotables 11 June



Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Trivia Bits 10 June


 Bacon's Castle

Bacon's Castle (pictured), a stronghold in Surry County during Bacon's Rebellion in the Virginia Colony in 1676, was never occupied by leader Nathaniel Bacon.

Program 437 was a United States military antisatellite program developed in the early 1960's using nuclear weapons delivered by Thor ballistic missiles as the primary mechanism of defeating enemy satellites.

The first internet .com domain,, was registered on March 15, 1985 to Symbolics, now-defunct computer manufacturer Symbolics, Inc.

The ancient Greek name of Greece was Hellas with the Greeks calling the country Hellas or Ellada (Greek: Ἑλλάς or Ελλάδα) and its official name is the Hellenic Republic.

Truthiness, a word made by Stephen Colbert of The Colbert Report, was selected as the 2005 Word of the Year by the American Dialect Society.

Played by American actor and comedian Tracy Morgan, Tracy Jordan is one of the characters from the 2006 American satirical television sitcom 30 Rock.

Yusuf ibn Ali Karamanli, pasha of Tripoli, declared war on the United States in 1801 by ordering the flagpole of Tripoli's United States consulate cut down.

Polynesian island in the south-eastern Pacific Ocean, Easter Island is a special territory of the country Chile that was annexed in 1888 and which in 1995 was named by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

The Overland Telegraph Line a 3200 km line connected the South Australian town of Port Augusta with Darwin and was completed in 1872 allowing fast communication between Australia and the rest of the world.

Dawn Steel was the first woman to head a major Hollywood film studio after her appointment as president of Columbia Pictures in 1987.

Quotables 10 June


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Trivia Bits 09 June



Elvis Presley’s first ever concert was in 30 July In 1954 when a trio, billed as The Blue Moon Boys (pictured), made their first appearance at the Overton Park Shell, with Slim Whitman headlining. The Blue Moon Boys were a band formed by Elvis Presley, guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black. 

In Astronomy, Plediades or Plediades Cluster is better known as The Seven Sisters.

Alcohol was forbidden during rehearsals and recording of any BBC show including The Goon Show, so the cast mixed brandy with milk to conceal it and in later episodes the catchphrase Round the back for the old brandy! was used to announce the exit of a character or a musical interlude.

Edo was the name of modern day city Tokyo until it officially became the capital after Emperor Meiji moved his seat to the city from the old capital of Kyoto in 1868.

Second string meaning replacement or backup comes from the middle ages when an archer always carried a second string in case the one on his bow broke.

The video games Wii Sports released November 2006 and Wii Sports Resorts released in June 2009 have the sports of bowling and golf in common.

Phil Spector considered the song River Deep - Mountain High, his 1966 production for Ike & Tina Turner, his best work, despite its commercial failure in the United States.

The first Europeans to discover Australia were the Dutch when in March 1606, the Dutch ship Duyfken, captained by Willem Janz, landed in far north Queensland, but left very quickly when one of the sailors was speared by an Aborigine.

The currency of Sweden is the Krona which has been the currency of Sweden since 1873.

Jerk is a style of cooking from Jamaica in which meat is dry-rubbed or wet marinated with a very hot spice mixture called Jamaican jerk spice.

A gnomon is the part of a sundial that casts the shadow and the Gnomon of Saint-Sulpice inside the church of Saint Sulpice in Paris, France, built to assist in determining the date of Easter, was fictionalized as a "Rose Line" in Dan Brown’s 2003 mystery-detective novel The Da Vinci Code.

Quotables 09 June



Monday, June 8, 2015

Trivia Bits 08 June



In an iconic 1955 Richard Avedon photograph, American supermodel Dovima (pictured) posed wearing a Dior evening dress standing with circus elephants taken at the Cirque d'hiver, Paris, in August 1955 and the gown being the first evening dress designed for Christian Dior by his new assistant, Yves Saint-Laurent.

Alcatraz Federal Prison was closed in March of 1963 after being an US military prison from 1859 to 1933 and as a federal prison from 1933 with Frank Wathernam being the last prisoner to leave Alcatraz prison on March 21, 1963.

In 1982, in the first operation of its kind, doctors at the University of Utah Medical Center implanted a permanent artificial heart in the chest of retired dentist Dr. Barney Clark, who lived 112 days with the device.

Stefan Kendal Gordy is better known by his stage name Redfoo, is an American singer, dancer, record producer, DJ and rapper best known as part of the musical duo LMFAO and is the son of Berry Gordy, Jr., founder of the Motown record label and writer-producer Nancy Leiviska.

A semitone is the smallest interval in the Western music chromatic scale.

In 1943 Ingvar Kamrad founded IKEA a Swedish retail company specialising in furniture resulting in him being one of the richest people in the world.

Dobro is the generic term for a wood-bodied, single cone resonator guitar originally made by the Dopyera brothers when they formed the Dobro Manufacturing Company in 1928.

Day-Glo the first fluorescent blacklight paint was co-invented by Bob Switzer and his brother Joe Switzer who both founded Day-Glo Color Corporation, in 1946 in Cleveland, Ohio.

Colloquially to tickle the ivories means to play the piano with the expression derived from the fact that the white keys of piano keyboards used always to be veneered with ivory, and a few still are.

The 1964 classic Australian novel My Brother Jack was written by George Johnston and is part of a trilogy centring on the character of David Meredith and won the Miles Franklin Award in 1964.

Quotables 08 June



Sunday, June 7, 2015

Movie Review ... Aloha


Aloha_poster‘Aloha’ proves without genuine character chemistry, a film can fail.  Australian music group Mondo Rock once sang ‘if the chemistry is right’.  Sadly director Cameron Crowe obviously didn’t hear their song as his script features hardly any.  You can’t blame the actors as they can only portray what they’ve been given.  Despite good intentions, ‘Aloha’ is a cinematic mis-fire mostly devoid of anything truly engaging. 

Brian (Bradley Cooper) is a military contractor assigned to the US space program in Hawaii.  Escorted by no-nonsense Air-Force pilot Allison (Emma Stone), he sets about his tasks.  When former flame Tracy (Rachel McAdams) re-enters his life, his mind goes into a tailspin.  His growing attraction to Allison sends Brian’s existence into free-fall.  Confused by his feelings, he has to choose between two women who have enslaved his tortured heart.

Filled with over-acting, self-indulgence and poor direction, ‘Aloha’ completely fails as a romantic comedy.  Whilst some aspects gain interest, these are almost instantly negated by a clumsily written narrative.  You are never sure of character’s actions with the main love triangle feeling forced.  The performers seem lost as to how to play their roles with Stone especially guilty of poor acting.  The rambling story stumbles to a shuddering climax making little sense showing little of its early promise.

Despite these lacklustre qualities, it can’t be denied Hawaii is beautifully shot.  Somewhat a love-letter to its lush locale, the movie digs deep into its spiritual motifs its native inhabitants live by.  This brings some diversion to the pedestrian screenplay and badly executed humour.  Crowe should have maintained better focus on telling an interesting tale than filming pointless scenes failing to blend into the other. 

‘Aloha’ is a messy affair occasionally making some sense.  It never really takes off as the leaden pacing enhances its issues.  Those looking for any chemistry from its supposed romantically inclined characters are better off watching better love stories than this one.


Movie Review Rating out of 10:  3

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 ... Woman In Gold



woman in gold posterHelen Mirren is one of those performers rarely failing to deliver.  With a catalogue of fine work to her name, her films have been engaging.  Putting in another solid turn with ‘Woman in Gold’, her thespian skills remained unsullied.  A quasi-companion piece to last year’s movie ‘Monuments Men’, which dealt with retrieving artworks stolen by the Nazis, it presents a more personal story.  Aided by Mirren’s esteemed presence, the emotional pain her character feels resonates through the screen.

Determined to recover a treasured family portrait taken by the Nazis during World War 2, Maria Altman (Helen Mirren) is resolute.  Hiring young lawyer Randol (Ryan Reynolds), she takes her case to the American Supreme Court.  Wanting closure and justice to war victims, Maria stops at nothing in her quest.  Battling a litany of lies and deception, only her iron-will can see her triumph over the ghosts from a terrible war.

‘Woman in Gold’ may not be entirely original, but has plenty of genuine heart.  Maria’s stoic determination to regain her family’s dignity is successfully conveyed via Mirren’s spirited performance.  She doesn’t over-exert her character’s emotions by subtly showing the long-buried pain she has carried.  Faced with old demons and a bureaucracy eager to hold onto their ‘treasures’, how Maria was able to withstand this personal onslaught is remarkable.  Based on true events, director Simon Curtis presents an interesting slice of history.

This isn’t just Mirren’s movie as her co-stars turn in equally strong performances.  Reynolds matches Mirren’s strong role with a character battling his own familial crisis.  Torn between past and present, his professional ideals become sorely tested.   The criss-crossing of timelines from the 1940’s until now are expertly interwoven as is the stark cinematography.  Whilst the story drags somewhat with some over-done emotional beats, ‘Woman in Gold’ delivers a generally solid true story.

Fans of Helen Mirren will be sure to enjoy ‘Woman in Gold’. Her latest only magnifies her amazing skills with this doyen of all fields of entertainment gaining another feather to her distinguished bow.

Woman In Gold 65t

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



Trivia Bits 07 June


The J Geils Band

Centrefold was the biggest hit from the 1981 album Freeze Frame for The J Geils Band (pictured)  going to Number 1 on the US Billboard Hot 100 in February 1982, and stayed there for six weeks.

The Merengue dance originated in the Dominican Republic and was made by the official music and dance of the Dominican Republic by Dominican politician, soldier and President Rafael Trujillo.

The Norwegian Lady Statues are located in the sister cities of Moss, Norway, and at the Oceanfront of Virginia Beach, Virginia in the United States and commemorate the lives lost in the 1891 shipwreck of the Norwegian barque Dictator off the coast of Virginia Beach and the lifesaving efforts of the community.

Situated close to the Vantaa River, the European capital city of Helsinki uses water from the Vantaa River as its backup water supply if the Päijänne Water Tunnel needs to be repaired.

Playing the character Pete Campbell in the 2014 American period drama television series Mad Men is American actor Vincent Kartheiser.

The Korean War, 25 June 1950 – 27 July 1953, was a war between South Korea and North Korea, in which a United Nations force led by the United States of America fought for the South, and China fought for the North.

Goblet, snare and dhol are types of drum.

The 1973 American supernatural horror film The Exorcist was directed by William Friedkin and adapted by William Peter Blatty from his 1971 novel of the same name and starred Linda Blair, Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow, Jason Miller and Lee J. Cobb.

In Disney's Fantasia, the Sorcerer's name is Yensid, which is Disney spelled backward.

In 1642, the first European to discover New Zealand was Abel Tasman a Dutch explorer, was the first European to sight New Zealand and called it Staten Landt, supposing it was connected to a landmass of the same name at the southern tip of South America..

Quotables 07 June