"Super 8" is now out on 4K and even if Josh didn't love it when it was in theaters, seeing it this time, he did. This week's episode takes a look at exactly what Abrams gets right with the film and his other movies. Unquestionably, the director has a style to which he returns and maybe the brilliance of his work is that it echoes some of the reasons this podcast exists.
Out this week on 4K UHD is the classic movie, "My Fair Lady." Winner of eight Academy Awards, the movie is still something special. You know what sticks with a lot of people, myself included, about it though? That ending. Today we take a look at that closing and wonder what it could have been like with someone else in the role.
Would you like to play a game?
This week, we're going to look at movies in a new way: as webs. Surely you've had this happen to you -- you watch one movie and it convinces you to watch something else and then something else and on and on down the line. It's all tied back into the first movie, sometimes in more ways than one, but it can get pretty far afield. Let's discuss...
The past week has seen both "Speed" and "Shrek" arrive on 4K UHD. These are both great movies. They were great when they first came out in theaters and they're still great today. Here's the thing about them though -- they both follow paths created by others; they're not great because they're doing something that has never been done before, they're great because they do it so well.
Recorded before the Academy Awards ceremony this year, this week we're celebrating Best Picture winner, "Nomadland." Out on Blu-ray this week, the film both celebrates a lifestyle and condemns the institutions that force it upon some. It has to make you wonder -- why do we allow so few to keep so much for themselves and keep so many so close to the poverty line?
Out on Netflix, "Bad Trip," like "Borat," is a movie where actors go around and do things to provoke a response from people they run into. It has some exceptionally funny moments in it, but Josh can't help but watch this sort of movie and wonder about all the moments where the pranks didn't go as planned. Is he the only one?
Does Josh speak a little quickly here? If so, it's only because he has a ton of thoughts about the complicated nature of the way so many movies are coming out these days, including "Raya and the Last Dragon." The movie is great, but should you pay $30 to get it on Diseny+ Premiere Access or the same to get it on iTunes? Prime Video? Blu-ray? There are so many options!
There are any number of things that might stand out to you about this week's podcast episode, one in which we discuss the movie "Our Friend." However, we think it'll be Josh's distress at the movie being named "Our Friend" when there are very good reasons to have it named differently (as you will hear if you listen).
Tom Hanks is incredibly wonderful as the former Captain fighting for the Confederacy, Jefferson Kyle Kidd, in "News of the World." Hanks makes this man (in what is an incredibly well made movie), a defender of all that is good and true and right. He may be a man with demons, but he's a proud former soldier and we watch as he fights for one child.
How exactly does this movie not deal with the fact that Kidd went to war for the right to have slaves and is proud that he was a Captain in an army which had that as their purpose?
Out next week on Blu-ray is "The Greatest Show on Earth." It is a movie that brings us back to the days of big top circuses. It makes us yearn for the popcorn and the sawdust, the clowns and the trapeze.
It is also selling something that never was. We need to be able to see that.
Okay, so streaming services like HBO Max and Netflix aren't quite the video store of old. Browsing through titles is tough, exclusivity makes thing worse, and they're constantly throwing their new movies at you in favor of catalog items. But, that doesn't mean there isn't good stuff to be found... if you look for it.
Maya Zinshtein has directed, and Abraham Troen has produced, a new documentary called "'Til Kingdom Come." On today's podcast they both join Josh to talk about the movie and this incredible alliance that has formed between one Israel-based philanthropic organization and Christian Evangelicals in the United States. The two groups may seem far apart, but maybe it is money that makes the world go round.
Up today on the podcast we have literary legend Tim O'Brien. For his 2019 book, "Dad's Maybe Book," O'Brien allowed a camera into his house to follow him. Directed by Aaron Matthews, the documentary resulting from this, "The War and Peace of Tim O'Brien" is now out on VOD and the man himself joins us to talk about it.
Out this week on blu-ray is a new John Hughes five movie collection. Aptly titled, "John Hughes 5-Movie Collection," the included titles are: "Ferris Bueller's Day Off;" "She's Having a Baby;" "Pretty in Pink;" "Some Kind of Wonderful;" and "Planes, Trains and Automobiles."
We're talking about all of them a little this week, but mostly Steve Martin because "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" is the best of the included titles.
There is something to be said for getting the facts of a story right. There is something entirely different to be said for getting the feelings of a story right. Where exactly does "Lady Sings the Blues" end up? Does it hit one of the marks? Does it hit both? And, has the sense of it changed since its initial release?
It is all too easy, especially with the pandemic, to forget to look up and see the world around you. We have put life on hold in order to have that life continue.
"Elizabethtown" and 2015's "The Little Prince" are now out on Blu-ray and Josh has some distinct thoughts about the journeys in those films and how they relate to our current world. Well, he thinks the thoughts are distinct. You be the judge.
Up today on the podcast we have Eliza Schroeder, whose new film "Love Sarah" is currently available on VOD. The wide-ranging discussion goes into how the idea for the bakery came about, what it's like to try to film food, how long the characters have lived in her head, and whether or not the bakery in the story would survive COVID-19.
Growing up, it felt like Danny Kaye movies were constantly being aired. Josh avoided them and it was an error he corrects this week as he watches "The Court Jester." On the other hand, he watched plenty of Mel Gibson and makes the mistake of seeing the actor's latest, "Fatman."
There is, one suspects, something clever buried somewhere within the filmic adaptation of "The Empty Man" graphic novel. The movie has a great look and James Badge Dale is a good actor and there's a lot to chew on in it. But, maybe because of its length or its desire to twist things around or its not wanting to explain anything in any way that makes any sense, it all ends up feeling... well... empty.
Our intent for this episode was to talk about "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" and "The Midnight Sky." Instead, Donald Trump, backed by the Republican Party, decided to continue to fan the flames of idiocy and hatred and the Capitol Building was taken over by terrorists. So, we're talking about that instead.
For what it's worth, both movies are really good.
"Grizzly II" was initially shot in the early 1980s. Or, some of it was shot until the money ran out (a producer left the project). In 2018, one of the producers, Suzanne Csikos Nagy, returned to the movie and finished it. That film is out on VOD this week. We admire the effort that must have taken and wonder what it means about returning/reediting projects in general.