TERMINATOR: DARK FATE REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR

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I was lucky enough to be on assignment again for Scenestr magazine last Wednesday night to attend a preview screening of Terminator: Dark Fate at Reading Cinemas, Newmarket. There were other critics and fans in attendance.

Sadly while I enjoyed Linda Hamilton’s performance and think this is the best sequel we got since Terminator 2: Judgement Day that is not necessarily high praise. You can read my full review here https://scenestr.com.au/movies-and-tv/terminator-dark-fate-film-review-20191101

 

 

Produced by Eyeball Media Enterprises Scenestr is an online national magazine with local offices around Australia. Having started in 1993 they’ve excelled at moving into the digital realm but they remain at heart from the streets. They still publish magazines in print for Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland every month.

-Lloyd Marken

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‘BLINDED BY THE LIGHT’ REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR

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On the 25th of July I attended a preview screening for Blinded by the Light at Palace Barracks on assignment for Scenestr magazine. I didn’t quite know what to expect but what I saw was the first great film of 2019. The release date had just been moved so finally three months later I can tell you about how good this movie is.

Directed by Gurinder Chadha (Bend It Like Beckham) and starring Viveik Kalra as Javed Khan, the film is a wonderful coming of age tale centred around the son of Pakistani immigrants growing up in Luton, England circa 1987.

Javed is finding himself when he discovers the music of Bruce Springsteen and uses it to guide him in pursuing his dreams and defining himself. A period piece, there are startling parallels to our own times and nostalgia for a time now gone.

I can’t say enough good things about this movie, with unnecessary sequels like Terminator: Dark Fate and Zombieland: Double Tap pass through our cinemas I would urge anybody to check out this feel good delight and make it the surprise hit of the season.

 

 

You can read my review here https://scenestr.com.au/movies-and-tv/blinded-by-the-light-review-20191022

Produced by Eyeball Media Enterprises Scenestr is an online national magazine with local offices around Australia. Having started in 1993 they’ve excelled at moving into the digital realm but they remain at heart from the streets. They still publish magazines in print for Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland every month.

-Lloyd Marken

STORIES ON THE 2019 TEACHX AWARD FINALISTS AVAILABLE ON THE COURIER MAIL, WINNEWS, 7NEWS, ABC RADIO, DAILY MERCURY, THE AUSTRALASIAN MUSLIM TIMES, THE DAILY EXAMINER, THE MORNING BULLETIN, THE SOUTH-EAST ADVERTISER, THE TOWNSVILLE BULLETIN and QUEST NEWSPAPERS.

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On Friday the 4th of October I completed my secondment of higher duties with the Media Team at the Queensland College of Teachers in support of their work for the 2019 TeachX Awards.  It concluded 10 weeks I had worked full time as a writer for the first time in my life.

In the last two and a half weeks I switched gears from writing about nominees to interviewing 15 of the 30 named finalists and writing media releases based on those interviews. I was guided in this endeavour by the manager of the team who is a former journalist of many years and was preparing the other 15 along with various other work.

The aim with media releases is to have them grab the attention of outlets and good ones can go out with very little changes made by the publication when they print the story. I did what I could and through the efforts of my manager and with some luck, the TEACHX Awards received unprecedented media coverage.

 

The 15 Finalists I interviewed included the following below of which I placed links to their initial nominee pieces published on the Queensland College of Teachers website.

Beginning to Teach

Kirra Gold from Marsden State High School

Dr Susanne Sprungala from Kirwan State High School

Gabrielle Milne from Nursey Road Special School

Outstanding Contribution to School Community

Mitchell Robertson from Marsden State High School

Canan Coskun from Wisdom College

Excellence in Teaching

Ruth MacLean from Indooroopilly State High School

Catherine Nicholson from Chancellor State College

Michelle Ragen from Brisbane Grammar School

Innovation to Teaching

Wendy Goldston from Frenchville State School

Thomas Patterson from Marsden State High School

Excellent Leadership in Teaching and Learning

Tamara Sullivan from Ormiston College

Patrick Egan from Emmaus College

Lynne Hardy from Mackay State High School

Outstanding Contribution to Teaching

Catherine Heiner from Sheldon College

Kirsti Ellerton from the Brisbane School of Distance Education

 

Each one of these 15 were extraordinary teachers and first rate human beings, it was just a privilege to speak to them. Their own individual stories were endlessly fascinating and their passion for their chosen profession and the students they taught shone through.

Amongst them were people who had worked in remote communities, flown into burnt out Dili, become teachers after careers as biologists, engineers, lawyers and builders. Others who had known from a young age there was no other job they were going to do.

Whether they were immigrants, windswept travellers, beginning teachers or experienced lifers they all still burned with a passion for educating the next generation of kids.

Teachers involved in virtual reality and holograms, others part of programs that taught trade skills, grew cultural pride and knowledge and empowered local communities. Ones that taught at special schools, private schools, independent non-denomination schools, state schools and distance education schools.

In the days since my secondment ended I have been updated on where their stories have appeared and will now direct you to links although many are behind paywalls which is fair enough as media outlets strive to remain viable in this digital era.

Media Sponsor The Courier Mail wrote a large article about the Awards and all Finalists.

The Courier Mail also wrote an article about Marsden State High School and theirfour finalists Kirra Gold, Mitchell Robertson, Andrew Peach and Thomas Patterson.

The Courier Mail also wrote an article about Finalist Cathy Nicholson and online posted an article on Canan Coskun.

The Australasian Muslim Times also wrote an article on Canan Coskun.

Regional newspaper The Daily Examiner wrote about Finalists Belinda Rule and Lynne Hardy.

Regional Newspaper Daily Mercury did a whole article on teacher Lynne Hardy.

Regional newspaper The Morning Bulletin wrote an article about Finalists Patrick Egan, Wendy Goldston and Norah Parsons.

Local Quest newspaper wrote an article about three Finalists Michael Senior, Carla Trott and Ruth MacLean and another on Marsden State High School and three of it’s four finalists Kirra Gold, Mitchell Robertson and Andrew Peach.

Quest also wrote an article about Finalists Catherine Heiner and Tamara Sullivan.

Local newspaper The South-East Advertiser wrote an article on four finalists Megan Pearse, Gabrielle Milne, Kirsti Ellerton and Lynne Schylder.

The Townsville Bulletin wrote an article on Finalist Dr Susanne Sprungala.

Thomas Patterson was interviewed by Rebecca Livingston on ABC Radio Brisbane.

Lynne Hardy received television news coverage from 7 News.

 

7News also did a story on Finalist Tamika Megawatt.

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Finally Wendy Goldston received Televison coverage from WINNews and then a competing network Channel 7 a few days later.

 

The TeachX Awards were held last Thursday night at the grand old building of Customs House with Finalists, Sponsors and VIPs attending.

84 year old Miss Merline Muldoon was there with the award category Innovation in Teaching recently named after her. I was lucky enough to wait on Miss Muldoon and her sister Janette.

Merline and Janette spoke to all finalists in their category and various VIPs who were keen to talk to them. Merline also presented on stage to each Innovation Finalist their Certificate and then congratulated the winner Jennifer Irving.

We were very lucky to have Miss Muldoon and other eponyms in attendance and I was honoured to spend time with her. She has a remarkable legacy in Queensland education.

A particular proud moment for me was when I was introduced by my manager to the finalists as the individual who had interviewed half of them. I was lucky enough to speak to a lot of them in person on the night.

It was noted by one winner Andrew Peach, on the night, all the positive energy in the air from the event and how we need to take that with us out into the education sector and through out our lives.

A full list of the winners can be found on the QCT website here https://www.qct.edu.au/news/2019-TeachX-Finalists

The awards had proven once again a success, the next day The Courier Mail printed a story on the winners on their front page and second page, a full feature on page 35 and an editorial piece by QCT Director Deanne Fishburn.

As for me, all I can say is, I was grateful for the opportunity. It bears repeating the event was a huge undertaking requiring a lot of work from a group of strong professionals. The aim was to recognise some of the great work that teachers are doing and to help elevate the profession.

When teachers such as these are involved and the people doing the work are so talented and committed it comes as no surprise to reflect the 2019 TeachX Awards were an unprecedented success.

I was thrilled to be in the room with such people.

-Lloyd Marken

EXCELLENT LEADERSHIP IN TEACHING AND LEARNING NOMINEES FOR 2019 TEACHX AWARDS AVAILABLE AT QUEENSLAND COLLEGE OF TEACHERS

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The 2019 TEACHX Awards are to be held on the 23rd of October and will recognise some of the most outstanding teachers working in the profession across Queensland. The event is run by the Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) who have received over 200 nominations across six categories.

In the lead up to the event, the media arm of QCT has published pieces on nominees and I was most fortunate to be placed on what was ultimately a 10 week secondment to their area to write some of these. In the end I wrote just over half with 115 pieces all up.

I have previously posted about the five other categories Outstanding Contribution to TeachingFor Innovation in TeachingExcellence in Beginning to Teach, Outstanding Contribution to School Community and Excellence in Teaching.

The final category published is Excellent Leadership in Teaching and Learning with 32 nominees of which I wrote pieces for eight.

They were Jeff Jepson, Jacqueline Mikami, Christopher Niven, Matthew O’Brien, Nicole Peltonen, Anthony Ries, Carol Ruskin,  and Tina Watson.

The event is a huge undertaking requiring a lot of work from a group of strong professionals. Like all things done by this team, it is done to recognise some of the great work that teachers are doing and to help elevate the profession. Being called upon to write full time, pieces that support these aims was a dream come true for me.

The people I got to work with were experienced, talented and extremely hard working and I hope I effectively contributed and learnt a thing or two.

Feel free to check out all the nominees and comment on what you liked. All 32 have made an extraordinary contribution to bettering the education of students.

-Lloyd Marken

THE BIFF IS BACK – BIFF 2019 PART II – ‘MEMORY: THE ORIGINS OF ALIEN’ AND ‘LITTLE MONSTERS’ REVIEW AVAILABLE ON WEEKEND NOTES

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I went into the final weekend of the Brisbane International Film Festival 2019 having seen the excellent documentary Midnight Family about a Mexico City ambulance crew.

MEMORY: THE ORIGIN OF ALIENS: Then on Friday night I went to Reading Cinemas at Newmarket to see a 6:15pm session of Memory: The Origins of Alien. I film A found interesting for the stories of the film I was unfamiliar with like the involvement of screenwriter of Dan O’Bannon.

 

It was an interesting film even if it seemed a little underfunded and dwelled on some points too long. I’ve been lucky to have a review published over at Weekend Notes that you can check out here https://www.weekendnotes.com/memory-the-origins-of-alien-film-review/

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Exiting Reading, I hopped in the car and drove over to New Farm cinemas who long term readers will recognise is an establishment I have some affection for. Catching a mocha with a mate over at the nearby 24 hour café Death by Decaf frequented by emergency personnel, hipsters, shift workers and young people out on the town. They make a damn fine mocha.

 

LITTLE MONSTERS: Then it was time to take in the late night 9:30pm screening of Aussie zombie comedy Little Monsters starring Lupita Nyongo’o. It was the kind of screening great for a film like this, close to full and with a Friday night crowd who wanted to be there and enjoy themselves. At a point when Neil Diamond’s classic Sweet Caroline featured somebody in the crowd voiced the bassline much to the delight of everyone else.

You can my review that was published on Weekend Notes as well here https://www.weekendnotes.com/little-monsters-film-review/

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Weekend Notes are a growing online magazine with a wealth of contributors based out of several cities across the United Kingdom, Australia and New York. Articles are leisure related and can include a wide variety of subjects from rainforest hikes to cultural festivals, from what hot new play is on at your underground theatre to a ultra trendy eatery. Writers are paid for their work based partly on how many views their articles get so please feel free to stop by and show some love.

-Lloyd Marken

EXCELLENCE IN TEACHING NOMINEES FOR 2019 TEACHX AWARDS AVAILABLE AT QUEENSLAND COLLEGE OF TEACHERS

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The 2019 TEACHX Awards are to be held on the 23rd of October and will recognise some of the most outstanding teachers working in the profession across Queensland. The event is run by the Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) who have received over 200 nominations across six categories.

In the lead up to the event, the media arm of QCT is publishing pieces on all the nominees and I was most fortunate to be placed on what was ultimately a 10 week secondment to their area to write some of these, all up I wrote 115 pieces.

I have previously posted about the categories Outstanding Contribution to TeachingFor Innovation in TeachingExcellence in Beginning to Teach and Outstanding Contribution to School Community.

The next category is Excellence in Teaching which received the second most amount of nominations of which I wrote 38 pieces on.

They were Natalie Bell, Lee Freeman, Georgia Gibbons, Morgan Gibbons, Kellie Gill, Clair Goodall, James Gynther, Lissa Gyte, Karen Hamilton, Jason Henry, Rachael Heritage, Julie Hirst, Gina Lyons, Ruth MacLean, Tiffany McCarthy, Suzette Meiring, Tabitha Mojilip, Catherine Nicholson, Brenton O’Neil, Alana PattersonRowena Petersen, Jae Phillips, Lauren Proctor, Michelle Ragen, Amy Rankin, Kristy Raybould, Katrina Riley, Desley Sadler, Raymond Scott, Megan Thirkill, Carla Trott, Paul Trotter, David Turner, Vince Wall, Casey WaltonMargaret Warren, Renee Wilkie and Courtney Wolbers.

The event is a huge undertaking requiring a lot of work from a group of strong professionals. Like all things done by this team, it is done to recognise some of the great work that teachers are doing and to help elevate the profession. Being called upon to write full time, pieces that support these aims is a dream come true for me.

The people I got to work with are experienced, talented and extremely hard working and I hope I effectively contributed and learnt a thing or two.

Feel free to check them out and comment on what you liked. All 65 have made an extraordinary contribution to bettering the education of students.

-Lloyd Marken

THE BIFF IS BACK – BIFF 2019 PART I – ‘MIDNIGHT FAMILY’ REVIEW AVAILABLE ON WEEKEND NOTES

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BIFF IS BACK! The Brisbane International Film Festival is back for another year and long term readers will recall my affection for it. I volunteered at BIFF in 2004, 2005 and 2007. In 2008 I was down to see over 20 movies and met my future wife on the steps of the Palace Cinema on James Street. We lost a BIFF for a while there but it returned in 2017 where I attended with Karen for the first time Opening Night. I was also on assignment with Scenestr magazine to review Australia Day and then last year I was on assignment for Scenestr on opening night.

This year I was wrapping up a work secondment writing for the Queensland College of Teachers so missed Opening Night and ended up sitting out the first few days of the festival.

 

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New Farm Cinemas foyer after seeing ‘Midnight Family’. Copyright Lloyd Marken.

 

Yet on Wednesday 09OCT2019 at New Farm Cinemas Karen and I attended a 6:15pm session of Midnight Family missing the first few minutes. All up, I have bought tickets to see five films at BIFF 2019 with three of them being docos. I can’t wait to see them all and share with you.

 

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Midnight Family was a great documentary about private ambulance crews in Mexico City. I was lucky enough to have my review published at Weekend Notes which continues on from my first reviews published with them last year being reviews for films I saw BIFF. You can read my review here https://www.weekendnotes.com/midnight-family-film-review-brisbane-international-film-festival-2019/

Weekend Notes are a growing online magazine with a wealth of contributors based out of several cities across the United Kingdom, Australia and New York. Articles are leisure related and can include a wide variety of subjects from rainforest hikes to cultural festivals, from what hot new play is on at your underground theatre to a ultra trendy eatery. Writers are paid for their work based partly on how many views their articles get so please feel free to stop by and show some love.

-Lloyd Marken