Eavesdropping at the Movies – IT

What is IT? Is IT any good? Is IT scary? How much of IT did Mike watch through his fingers? Why would he agree to see IT in LieMAX? Was he right about the bit with the sink? (Spoiler: He has googled it and discovered that he was wrong.)

The podcast can be listened to in the player above or at this link.

With José Arroyo of First Impressions.

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Eavesdropping at the Movies – mother!

What is Darren Aronofsky’s latest fever dream all about? Is the negative audience response fair? How good is Jennifer Lawrence, seriously you guys?

The podcast can be listened to in the player above or at this link.

With José Arroyo of First Impressions.

Eavesdropping at the Movies – Detroit

Why Detroit is the best film currently on release. Is John Boyega a star? Does Kathryn Bigelow get the respect she deserves? Is race the political unconscious of American cinema? Why hasn’t a great film on such a timely subject found an audience?

The podcast can be listened to in the player above or at this link.

With José Arroyo of First Impressions.

Eavesdropping at the Movies – American Made

Is it possible for a film about drug smuggling, weapon dealing, CIA-sponsored militias and getting ludicrously rich to be in any way immoral? Find out as we tolerate American Made so you don’t have to.

The podcast can be listened to in the player above or at this link.

With José Arroyo of First Impressions.

Eavesdropping at the Movies – The Hitman’s Bodyguard

Can an action film that goes through Coventry be any good? Is it important that action scenes are funny? Is Gary Oldman a whore? All valuable questions. All answered in our chat about The Hitman’s Bodyguard. I think.

The podcast can be listened to in the player above or at this link.

With José Arroyo of First Impressions.

Eavesdropping at the Movies – The Dark Tower

Stephen King’s The Dark Tower is a lovely big fresh movie hoping to become a lovely big lucrative franchise. Does it have what it takes? Can we possibly agree on Idris Elba? Is Matthew McConaughey showing his chest off or keeping his shirt on more than usual? What of 4DX, the silly thing where the seats move and poke you and blow air in your ears? And who has better eyebrows than Cara Delevingne?

The podcast can be listened to in the player above or at this link.

With José Arroyo of First Impressions.

We’re starting a podcast: Eavesdropping on Mike and José After a Movie

Together with José Arroyo of First Impressions, I’m starting a podcast. It’s tentatively called Eavesdropping on Mike and José After a Movie. I agree. The title is on the clunky side. But it can be slimmed down, and it’s growing on me. In fact, I won’t rest until the phrase “Eavesdrop and chill” is on everybody’s lips.

José explains in fabulous detail his ambitions for the podcast here. Two friends chatting after a movie, he says. What are our impressions, what struck us, what bored us? The cinema is a social space. We don’t just view movies there, we discuss them too. We all love movies, that’s why we’re there. Sometimes we listen in on others, sometimes we butt in. Sometimes they listen to us. Sometimes they can’t help but overhear. It’s the magic of the foyer.

He’s an old romantic. Me, I just like the sound of my own voice.

Anyway, our first (trial) podcast is out now. It’s about Girls Trip. Please do give it a listen and tell us what you thought. Is the title any good, do we sound sexy enough, what’s missing or excessive? How far did you make it before turning off? No feedback is bad feedback, except the bad feedback, which you should keep to yourself.

Source: Eavesdropping on Mike and José After a Movie

Dunkirk

Dunkirk Poster

Released 2017. Written and directed by Christopher Nolan. Starring Fionn Whitehead, Mark Rylance, Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh.

Spoilers follow.

No film has ever left me speechless. I’ve sometimes said, “I’m speechless”, but those words have always emerged fully formed.

As the credits rolled and the lights came up after Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan’s World War II blockbuster, I didn’t know what I felt. I didn’t know if I felt anything. I wondered whether I’d missed something. But when I opened my mouth to speak, I had to hold my tongue because I felt my jaw quivering and my eyes welling up. It took me several moments before I could utter a coherent sentence. I’ve sobbed at the ends of films before, but this was something different. This was shell shock.

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Saw: Hyperlink Horror

Saw Poster

If you haven’t seen the Saw films yet… watch them or spoil them. Make your choice.

Following the by-then de rigueur twist finale of the fourth instalment of Lionsgate’s yearly and, it seemed, unending Saw series (2004-2010), in which sort-of-serial killer Jigsaw (Tobin Bell) puts people through life-or-death ‘games’, the cinema lights came up but my friends and I didn’t move from our seats. We were already discussing what we’d just seen. Saw IV‘s central twist was arguably the most remarkable the series had featured yet: while Saw II‘s two plots take place not at the same time, as the intercutting leads us to believe, but several hours apart, Saw IV ups the ante considerably by revealing that it had taken place simultaneously with Saw III – the brilliance of the twist’s execution sees Agent Strahm (Scott Patterson), himself no doubt bedazzled by the series’ approach to plot structure, accidentally, and literally, walking in on Saw III‘s ending, seconds after it has taken place.

Because I’d done my homework and watched the previous three films in preparation, I had a better immediate grasp of what we’d witnessed than my friends did, and began to explain it as best I could as we slowly wandered out of the screen, but we’d barely made it to the corridor before my delineation of the plot attracted a small crowd of other moviegoers, and once I’d finished my piece, the floor opened, and an impromptu seminar began. Explaining the entire plot wasn’t as easy as explaining the twist, though, and our ensuing discussion incorporated the previous three films’ plot intricacies and particularly the backstory of Jigsaw, which was crucial to this latest film. I began to realise that this was part of the Saw experience itself: we’ve all had discussions about what a film’s message was, or what we thought of it, but our symposium was divorced from interpretation and analysis. We weren’t trying to work out what the film was communicating. We just wanted to know what the plot was.

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Inside Out

Inside Out Group

Released 2015. Directed by Pete Docter. Screenplay by Meg LeFauve & Josh Cooley and Pete Docter. Starring Amy Poehler, Phyllis Smith, Richard Kind, Lewis Black, Kaitlyn Dias.

Significant spoilers follow, including many of the best jokes and the ending, so if you wish to avoid anger I recommend you see Inside Out before reading on. (I also talk about the end of Toy Story 3, but if you haven’t seen that then I assume you have never seen a film in your life.)

As a child, my favourite comic strip was The Numskulls. The idea that tiny maniacal homunculi populated and drove human bodies was captivating and wild, tweaked my interest in science, and made for thousands of great jokes. Now Pixar, the undisputed master of family-friendly cinema, has turned its attention to the same idea. Colour me excited.

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