Episode 246 – Shelley Nolan Shyamalan

by admin on November 3, 2014

It’s a particularly movie-centric slice of Ham this week as Eric D. Snider joins the show to discuss Halloween movies, the writings of Stephen King, the last book Dawn threw across the room, horrible things you could do to trick or treaters if you were a terrible person, Gilmore Girls-binging, and the ways in which film critics of all stripes try to convince themselves they’re smarter than they really are.

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You Need to See: A Very Long Engagement

by dawn on October 29, 2014

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With the neighborhood video store all but extinct and movie-lovers finding their films via Netflix and Amazon searches, the pleasure of “stumbling across” a great film is becoming a lost pleasure.  Each week I share one of my favorite movies, and I encourage you to seek it out.

There’s something fundamentally wrong with people who don’t appreciate Jean-Pierre Jeunet. Yes, that’s an admittedly high-handed statement, being just another version of the annoying film-geek mantra “You just didn’t get it” that’s tossed at anyone who disses a much-loved film. Well, a lot of people didn’t like the sweet, romantic Amélie. And a surprising number of people didn’t like his Gilliamesque weirdnesses Delicatessen or City of Lost Children. And a whole lot of people hated his American debut, Alien: Resurrection (about which this reviewer would happily argue that a revisit might change one’s mind, as repeated viewings prove it to be far more complex, dark and witty than your average horror-flick franchise fodder).

At the risk of ticking off the reader at this early stage of the review, though, this must be said — those people were all wrong because those movies are all great. They just didn’t get ‘em. [click to continue…]

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Episode 245 – #NotAllPumpkinSpice

by admin on October 27, 2014

Dawn finds herself couch-bound with an illness, and decides to while her sniffly hours away engaging with #gamergaters on twitter. This somehow ends with Dawn (and her feminist ladyparts) on the verge of memehood. Best to celebrate with a warm cup of coffee and some homemade pumpkin creamer, the recipe for which is shared WITH YOU, on THIS EPISODE! Get some.

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With the neighborhood video store all but extinct and movie-lovers finding their films via Netflix and Amazon searches, the pleasure of “stumbling across” a great film is becoming a lost pleasure.  Each week I share one of my favorite movies, and I encourage you to seek it out.

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Jim Jarmusch makes the kind of movies that infuriate people who hate independent films. The characters talk too much. Odd things happen that remain unexplained. There are no spaceships or big explosions. And they’re very weird. So, yes, Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai is a very weird movie – which isn’t to say it’s not a very good movie as well, because it’s very good indeed. One should expect no less from the man who made Down by Law, Mystery Train, Night on Earth and Dead Man. [click to continue…]

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Dawn considers her ambition to have robot parts grafted onto her body after her burner dies prematurely, the films of Christopher Walken are considered, was admitting Michael Bay into the Criterion Collection really that much of a tragedy, and the only type of meats you should beat… with a hammer.

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You Need to See: Big Fish

by dawn on October 15, 2014

With the neighborhood video store all but extinct and movie-lovers finding their films via Netflix and Amazon searches, the pleasure of “stumbling across” a great film is becoming a lost pleasure.  Each week I share one of my favorite movies, and I encourage you to seek it out.

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“Here in Hollywood, you have to describe [a film] in a couple of sentences or it’s not going to get made. So it was nice to work on a movie where that’s the whole point — you can’t describe it, put it into a real hard category. Things aren’t just black and white. Some things are both real and unreal at the same time.”

— Tim Burton

Art may not always imitate life, but some of the very best art is directly inspired by it. Author Daniel Wallace’s novel Big Fish, about a man coming to terms with the tall tales told by his fabulist dad, came from Wallace’s ruminations on his relationships with his flamboyant father and with his own young son. Screenwriter John August found himself drawn to the novel because the father/son relationship, he says, reminded him strongly of his own family dynamics. And director Tim Burton took a shine to August’s script because he was going through a journey of self-discovery following the death of his own father, doing a lot of thinking about the relationships between fathers and sons (“It was an opportunity to explore that without, you know, therapy,” he explains on the DVD’s commentary track.)  [click to continue…]

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Episode 243 – I Love My New Drug

by admin on October 13, 2014

Dawn discusses the sense of overkill (as described by Colin Hay) she’s grown familiar with, and the way she’s come to combat it – a method that involves abandoning delicious, delicious alcohol. Also discussed: Seeing the Who, the decision to abandon bad nicknames in the pursuit of seriousness, the future of weed, and the magic of pop-tarts.

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You Need to See: Dreamcatcher

by dawn on October 8, 2014

With the neighborhood video store all but extinct and movie-lovers finding their films via Netflix and Amazon searches, the pleasure of “stumbling across” a great film is becoming a lost pleasure.  Each week I share one of my favorite movies, and I encourage you to seek it out.

This week, however, I’ve chosen a truly abysmal film, so terrible that it becomes something wholly beyond the usual judgements of quality, demanding that you watch just to have the experience of seeing how deeply, psychotically awful a movie can be.

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Having been run down by an errant van-driver and smashed into bits by the side of a Maine highway in 1999, a recovering Stephen King kept himself entertained during his period of forced bed rest by doing what he does best — vomiting up every little bit of his psyche onto the printed page in the form of a horror/suspense novel. The uneven, formulaic, and ridiculously long novel (it logged in at over 600 pages) read exactly like what it was, the work of man who was attempting to revisit every single one of his most overworked themes while obsessing on his disabled state, hopped up on painkillers. With some five different storylines in both the past and present happening simultaneously, horribly written characters, idiotic set pieces and an almost gleeful wallowing in graphic descriptions of bodily functions, it may be King’s absolute worst book in his extremely uneven career.

Yet someone, for reasons utterly inexplicable, decided that Dreamcatcher should be made into a motion picture. [click to continue…]

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Episode 242 – Almond Milk and Pumpkin Beers

by admin on October 6, 2014

The pumpkin adventure continues, with help from Jenny Hieronymus and Sean Stutzman of the In One Day Radio podcast! They bring a bushel of bombers to sample, while Dawn brings the pain (in the form of really terrible cookies to try). Learn how to make your own coffee creamer, how to make pudding out of a chia pet, and the strange skills you only learn by volunteering to record yourself having conversations for an hour a week, every week, for any number of years.

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With the neighborhood video store all but extinct and movie-lovers finding their films via Netflix and Amazon searches, the pleasure of “stumbling across” a great film is becoming a lost pleasure.  Each week I share one of my favorite movies, and I encourage you to seek it out.

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I love Pedro Almodóvar’s films, but they certainly are difficult to describe. Suggest a friend see Matador (1986), for example, and they inevitably respond with “What’s it about?” Well, it’s about a matador … and angels … and masturbation. Sort of. Or take Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! (1989): an adequate explanation of that one can take 45 minutes, because “mental patient kidnaps a former porn star/junkie, slaps her around some, then ties her to a bed; actually, he just wants to get married and have kids” doesn’t cover it, even if that really is (I kid you not) Leonard Maltin’s description. [click to continue…]

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