A BANQUET, STRAWBERRY MANSION, and THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE on Episode #397

Jessica Alexander stands in the woods with her mouth agape staring at something above her in the movie A BanquetThis week we have strong opinions about all the movies we cover. First up, is Josephine Decker’s THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE (1:43), a surreal romance none of us could stand about a teen coping with the death of her older sister. Next, we cover Kentucker Audley and Albert Birney’s colorful sci-fi romance STRAWBERRY MANSION (19:08), a story that’s stylized and smart, but becomes way too weird for one of us. Lastly, we review A BANQUET (30:50), Ruth Paxton’s tense psychological horror film, which we all agree falters in one key area. And in honor of Black History Month, this week we talk about Spike Lee’s biopic MALCOLM X starring Denzel Washington for our Patreon exclusive audio

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THE MATRIX RESURRECTIONS on Episode #390

Carrie-Anne Moss as Trinity and Keanu Reeves as Neo in Lana Wachowski's film THE MATRIX RESURRECTIONS

We’re taking the red pill for our last show of 2021 so we can discuss THE MATRIX RESURRECTIONS! We had so much to say we felt that the movie deserved a whole episode worth of conversation. Lana Wachowski’s fourth entry in the franchise stars Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Jessica Henwick, and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II. We delve deep into the sci-fi film’s themes, particularly its humorous meta commentary on its own existence; its continuation of the Matrix story as a trans allegory; its exploration of trauma, romance, control, and free will; and the many exciting ways it both builds on the Matrix mythology and takes a hammer to it. We also talk about how the movie fits into the context of the franchise as a whole and briefly talk about our experience revisiting the previous films as a primer for this one.

And on this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we go a completely different direction by talking about the winner of our Christmas heist movie poll, Daryl Duke’s 1978 film THE SILENT PARTNER starring Elliott Gould and Christopher Plummer!

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THE HARDER THEY FALL, NIGHT RAIDERS, and BUKRA FIL MISH-MISH (BJFF) on Episode #383

Regina King stands with her hand on her gun while Zazie Beetz stands behind her guarded by two men who also have guns drawn in the Western The Harder They FallThis week we start by reviewing Tal Michael’s BUKRA FIL MISH-MISH (3:59), a fascinating documentary playing at the Boston Jewish Film Festival about three Jewish brothers who were pioneers of Egyptian animation. Next, we discuss Danis Goulet’s NIGHT RAIDERS (16:41), a smart Indigenous sci-fi film about a mother (Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers) trying to rescue her daughter (Brooklyn Letexier-Hart) from a fascist state. After that we review Jeymes Samuel’s THE HARDER THEY FALL (32:25), a bold Black Western with a stacked cast. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about Lou Adler’s 1982 film LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, THE FABULOUS STAINS!

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FINCH, PASSING, and BEANS on Episode #382

We get a good laugh about how the one-word titles we’re reviewing form a sentence, but after that we get serious about this week’s movies. First, we discuss Tracey Deer’s BEANS (2:22), a layered coming-of-age drama set against the real-life 78-day standoff between the Mohawk community and government forces in 1990 Quebec. Next, we cover Rebecca Hall’s PASSING (22:39), a compelling 1920s drama about race and class starring Tessa Thompson and Ruth Negga. Lastly, we review FINCH (42:21), Miguel Sapochnik’s moving post-apocalyptic sci-fi drama about a man (Tom Hanks) who builds a robot that he must teach to take care of his dog. And on this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about Penny Marshall’s 1992 baseball film A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN starring Geena Davis, Lori Petty, and Tom Hanks! 

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DUNE, KNOCKING, and TILL DEATH on Episode #379

Timothee Chalamet looks pensively in Denis Villeneuve's film adaptation of DuneWe start off this week with S.K. Dale’s entertaining thriller TILL DEATH (2:37), which stars Megan Fox as a woman who must outwit two men trying to find her…while handcuffed to her dead husband. Next we discuss Frida Kempff’s thriller KNOCKING (19:10), an effective commentary on gaslighting about a woman tortured by knocking sounds in her apartment. Finally, we review Denis Villeneuve’s sci-fi epic DUNE (30:25), the first part in a proposed two-part adaptation of Frank Herbert’s famous sci-fi novel, starring Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Zendaya, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Jason Momoa, and Javier Bardem. We dig its scope, its cast, and its take on the story. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about Adam Wingard’s YOU’RE NEXT, a 2011 home invasion horror film we all enjoy!

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V/H/S/94, I’M YOUR MAN, and NIGHTBOOKS on Episode #377

An Asian man with glasses laughing maniacally as he's being recorded through a video camera display in the horror anthology V/H/S/94

“The Subject” is a brutual segment in V/H/S/94 but it held our attention.

It’s October, so of course we start off this week by reviewing NIGHTBOOKS (2:19), David Yarovesky’s surprisingly enjoyable Netflix horror film, about a boy (Winslow Fegley) who must tell scary stories to survive after he’s imprisoned by a witch (Krysten Ritter). Next, we discuss Maria Schrader’s delightful and layered German sci-fi romance I’M YOUR MAN (21:40), starring Maren Eggert and Dan Stevens (yes, THAT Dan Stevens). Lastly, we cover V/H/S/94 (37:31), the uneven fourth film in the V/H/S horror anthology franchise. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about the winner of our train movie poll, Sang-ho Yeon’s 2016 horror film TRAIN TO BUSAN!

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CANDYMAN (2021), THE GREEN KNIGHT, and REMINISCENCE on Episode #372

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II holds his hand up looking terrified at the camera in the movie Candyman

One of our favorite aspects of CANDYMAN is its use of mirrors.

This week we start by discussing Lisa Joy’s platitude-filled sci-fi noir REMINISCENCE (2:14), starring Hugh Jackman, Rebecca Ferguson, and Thandiwe Newton. One of us enjoyed it, one thought it was “meh,” and one found it utterly insufferable. Next, we cover David Lowery’s epic fantasy film THE GREEN KNIGHT (18:29), starring Dev Patel as Gawain from Arthurian legend. Overall, we dug this gorgeous film that both honors the tale of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Next, we tackle Nia DaCosta’s CANDYMAN (38:23), a sequel to the 1992 film starring Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, which features lots of visually stunning and unsettling moments. But two of us thought it didn’t dig as deep into social commentary as it could have. And on this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about the winner of our amusement park movie poll, Herk Harvey’s 1962 horror film CARNIVAL OF SOULS.

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FEAR STREET: PART TWO – 1978, OLD, SETTLERS, GUNPOWDER MILKSHAKE, and Our 7th Anniversary on Episode #367

Emily Rudd and Sadie Sink stand facing each other mid-argument in the movie in FEAR STREET: PART TWO - 1978

Emily Rudd and Sadie Sink play sisters constantly at odds in FEAR STREET: PART TWO – 1978

Spoilerpiece celebrates its 7th anniversary this week! After we all offer a huge thank you to everyone who has supported us over the years, Megan leads off with a review of M. Night Shyamalan’s OLD (5:52), a horror movie about people aging rapidly, which is exactly what we expected in the worst way. Next, we talk about Navot Papushado’s GUNPOWDER MILKSHAKE (17:44), a stylized Netflix action film with a stacked cast (Karen Gillan, Lena Headey, Carla Gugino, Angela Bassett, and Michelle Yeoh), that isn’t used to its fullest. After that, we dig into SETTLERS (33:47), Wyatt Rockefeller’s brutal sci-fi Western that we struggled through. We wrap up with FEAR STREET: Part Two – 1978 (44:04), the second film in Leigh Janiak’s Netflix horror trilogy, which we were all excited to see (it doesn’t disappoint). And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about Robert Luketic’s 2001 rom-com LEGALLY BLONDE starring Reese Witherspoon! We have a blast talking about this movie, which recently marked its 20th anniversary.

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BLACK WIDOW, THE TOMORROW WAR, and THE FOREVER PURGE on Episode #364

Scarlett Johansson squints into the distance as wreckage smolders around her in the movie Black Widow
We were excited to see Scarlett Johansson in Black Widow’s long-overdue standalone film.

Kicking things off this week, we review Everardo Gout’s THE FOREVER PURGE (5:58), the latest entry in the PURGE franchise! It stars Ana de la Reguera, Tenoch Huerta, and Josh Lucas. Megan and Dave discuss its relevance to recent American political events and why they really dug its political commentary. Next, we all talk about Chris McKay’s long and disappointing sci-fi flick THE TOMORROW WAR (23:54), which has decent action, but a lot of bad writing and acting (especially from Chris Pratt). We wrap up with Cate Shortland’s much anticipated movie BLACK WIDOW (40:48), starring Scarlett Johansson in the second female-led superhero film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. One of us loved it, but two of us had some mixed feelings about its performances and pacing. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we tackle Karyn Kusama and Diablo Cody’s 2009 horror comedy JENNIFER’S BODY

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IN THE HEIGHTS, HOLLER, CAVEAT, and THE MITCHELLS VS. THE MACHINES on Episode #361

Anthony Ramos and Melissa Barrera in film In the Heights

On this week’s show, we open with THE MITCHELLS VS. THE MACHINES (2:28), a wild, quirky, and charming animated movie, written and directed by Mike Rianda and Jeff Rowe, featuring a regular ol’ American family struggling to save humanity from a robot apocalypse. It’s a hoot. Next up is CAVEAT (18:12), Damian Mc Carthy’s eerie and unsettling Irish horror film that says, “Oh, you’re not afraid of rabbits? Get a load of this shit” (Dave watched it in broad daylight if that tells you anything). Then there’s HOLLER (34:36), an excellent drama written and directed by Nicole Riegel, about a high school senior (Jessica Barden) who joins a sleekly scummy scrap metal crew while trying to decide whether she’s going to stay in her hit-by-hard-times Ohio hometown or go to college. Finally, we wrap up with IN THE HEIGHTS (45:28), the long-awaited adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda and Quiara Alegría Hudes’ musical, with a screenplay by Hudes directed by Jon M. Chu. One of us loved it, one of us enjoyed moments, and one of us was kind of “eh.” Free scoop of ice cream if you guess correctly! And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about one of Megan’s favorite sci-fi films, Douglas Trumbull’s SILENT RUNNING, starring a young and super intense Bruce Dern. It’s a first-timer for Evan and Dave.

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Download Here – and don’t forget to follow us on Apple PodcastsPandoraStitcher, or Spotify! Call us at 862-21–PIECE (862-217-4323) or send us an e-mail: spoilerpiece AT gmail.com