You may never have heard of "Killing Gunther," but you certain know some of the actors in it -- Taran Killam (who also writes and directs it), Cobie Smulders, and Arnold Schwarzenegger to name but a few. It's something of a low-budget zany action-comedy about inept assassins trying to kill a good assassin. You might never suspect it at first blush, but it kind of works.
Is this our last episode for 2017?
Yes, quite probably it is, and rather than doing a traditional round-up of the year we're going to look at three movies and examine how we (and by that we mean Josh) relate to the characters in them. After all, the way we see/relate to the characters is a huge part of so many movies and in two of these three instances, it's just a little tough.
David Huggins firmly believes in his many alien encounters and in his new documentary, director Brad Abrahams treats Huggins' beliefs with nothing but respect. Today, Abrahams comes on the podcast to discuss his look at Huggins and how the piece came together.
Today's podcast focuses heavily on Josh's son and said son's waning enthusiasm for the "Despicable Me" franchise.
"Despicable Me 3," technically the fourth film in the franchise, is out on Blu-ray today, but does that even matter to a six-year-old who once loved the Minions more than life itself?
Out this week on Blu-ray is "Rememory," which features Peter Dinklage. The film deals with a machine that can pull memories from people's heads and allow them to be viewed on an external screen.
It isn't a particularly good movie, but it does work as a springboard for the larger discussion of how memories make us who we are.
Writer/director/star Noël Wells ("Master of None," "SNL") drops by the podcast today to talk to us about her new movie, "Mr. Roosevelt."
The wide-ranging chat touches on everything from the origin of the characters to takeaway messages for the audience to Wells' favorite responses from those watching.
One of the questions that regularly occupies Josh's mind is that of how we become who we are. That is, what is there in that vast hodgepodge of our history that blends together to create each of us individually and our worldview.
What better way to explore that question than with two movies hitting blu-ray this week -- "Cars 3" and "The Glass Castle."
Maggie Betts joins the podcast this week to talk about her film, "Novitiate," which is currently out in select theaters. The film focuses on nuns, and those studying to be nuns, as the Vatican II talks take place. Betts, the writer and director of the film, was at Sundance this year with "Novitiate," where she won the Director Breakthrough Award, and it later screened at TIFF as well.
Here she tells us what went into crafting the story and how much changed when she was on set.
The filmic adaptation of "Dreamgirls" is getting a swell new Blu-ray release this week, but watching it Josh couldn't help but think that the sort of fame and power offered up in the movie is fame and power Josh just doesn't want. Then again, he doesn't want the fame and power afforded Peter Parker in "Spider-Man: Homecoming," so maybe he just doesn't want fame and power at all.
Ah, lighting. It sets the stage. It adds flair. It lets the audience know in ways that are not always subtle whether they should be laughing or crying, scared or amused. As with anything though, moderation may be the key. It is possible to push mood lighting far enough to destroy the mood.
In this lightly spoiler-y episode (you have been warned) of the podcast we talk about some of the major problems with "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell no Tales." Does this once great franchise have anything left to give or is it time for Johnny Depp to hang up his pirate boots and move on to dry land?
There are some things which just are not done. One does not, for instance, eat pastrami on white bread with mayonnaise, one does not yell "fire" in a crowded theater, and one most definitely does not avoid the crust when eating a pie.
On this podcast we talk "A Ghost Story," pie etiquette, and more.
Sometimes gifs of minions and bananas get sent to those we love. This can happen for any number of reasons from a query about purchasing them (bananas, not minions), to suggesting a snack (again, bananas, not minions), to a simple method of greeting.
On this episode we look at a little at (romantic) relationships and how they play out in two films from this year -- "The Big Sick" and "The Hero."
This week we revisit the question of recommending movies. What, for instance, do you do when the choice is between two movies--in this case "The Mummy" (2017) and "First Kill" (2017)--neither of which is very good. How do you go about picking them apart and making that choice?
Anthropomorphizing animals can work either to the benefit of a film or it can detract from it... or maybe it isn't necessary at all. As with so many things, this depends on the story being told.
Today we have two distinctly different takes on the depiction of animals -- "Born in China" and "Megan Leavey." Listen and find out how they do.
On this week's episode, Josh delves into not just "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2," but also a technology trend that saddens him greatly. Listen as he laments our world's desire to cram big movies onto small devices.
Arriving on Blu-ray today is "Chuck," the story of the boxer who was the inspiration for Rocky. Sadly though, Chuck Wepner gets caught up in the whole idea of Rocky and movie stardom and tries to live someone else's dream.
It makes for a powerful movie and quite the cautionary tale. But, how do you know if you're living your dream or that of another person?
Steve Coogan is fantastic in Oren Moverman's "The Dinner" (2017). Seriously, he's great. Of course, his being fantastic doesn't necessarily mean that everyone should run right out and see it.
Do not get us wrong. Josh highly recommends the movie, and lost some sleep over Coogan's performance, but not everything is for everyone and we're going to look at a little bit today.
There is a brilliant nugget of truth in "The Circle." There is an intelligent point made about what we allow companies to do for us and the rights we give them. This, however, is all wrapped up inside some incredibly poor leaps of logic and the overstated nature of the whole thing.
Having discussed the anime version of "Ghost in the Shell" earlier this year, the time has come to look at the live action movie starring Scarlett Johansson. Why does this movie which looks so good falter so terribly in its story? Why does recent theatrical release "Valerian" do the same? Where does this lead us?
Sometimes all you want is a movie about two groups of people who don't like each other in a prolonged gun battle with one another.
Well, guess what, the movie you're looking for is "Free Fire" and it comes out on Blu-ray on July 18th. It's got good, it's got bad, and it's got...guns. Lots of guns.
It may not sound like a big thing, but Josh opted to not rewatch the original "Trainspotting" before watching the sequel. An experiment inspired by his daughter, Josh wanted to see just how that might affect his experience and, in the case of "T2 Trainspotting," it worked brilliantly.
Kids, don't try this at home.
What if two hated political foes had to take a trip together? Nick Hamm has directed a fictionalized account of a such a trip that did in fact happen with Martin McGuinness and Ian Paisley as the two men were taking part in peace talks about the conflict in Northern Ireland.
Hamm joins Josh today to discuss this movie, "The Journey," where it came from, and where it might lead us in the future.
Josh hates many things. The list is both incomplete and with items too numerous to mention. And yet, at the same time, Josh doesn't fully grasp how people can hate each other for something like race or gender or religion or sexual orientation. He knows the hatred is there in the world, he knows it is wrong, and he simply cannot fathom why anyone would feel that way.
Can't everyone just love each other, like the couple at the center of the powerful "A United Kingdom?"
Both the 75 year-old "Bambi" and the new "Beauty and the Beast" are arriving on Blu-ray this week. One is an utter classic and one is an update to a (newer) classic. Does the latter work? What does an update to the former look like? No, it doesn't look like the "SNL" Bambi thing with The Rock, funny as that may have been.
Welcome to this week's meander.