We didn’t get a chance to share our top 10 films from 2021 last week, so we’re doing it this week! We each dig into our individual top 10 films from our 2021 Boston Online Film Critics Association Awards ballots, discussing the overlap between our lists, and the unique films that made our respective ballots. First up, is Dave (2:47), whose ballot includes a documentary, comedies, and dramas. He’s followed by Evan (33:20), whose list includes dramas, comedies, and horror. After that is Megan (47:09), whose list includes horror, dramas, and one comedy. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we decided to review a film with the number 10 in the title, 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU, starring Julia Stiles and Heath Ledger!
It’s a bountifully loaded week at Spoilerpiece! First, Megan talks about THE GOOD LIAR (3:00), starring Helen Mirren and Ian McKellen as two olds locked in a battle of rapidly aging wits. Is it good? Or is it just that Mirren and McKellen are good in an otherwise lackluster flick? Moving on to the Boston Jewish Film Festival, Evan talks briefly about the Tovah Feldshuh-starring GOLDA’S BALCONY (11:59). Then he and Megan share thoughts on MY POLISH HONEYMOON (14:40) and FLAWLESS (21:52). Finally, Megan and Dave deconstruct Elizabeth Banks’ CHARLIE’S ANGELS (29:29) reboot before getting into the Martin Scorsese opus THE IRISHMAN (41:03).
This week we start off Catching up with Crean (TM) as he tells Megan and Dave about his experience watching PARASITE (2:52). Then Megan talks about several films IFFBoston’s Fall Focus, including WAVES (7:10), THE TRUTH (9:48), CLEMENCY (11:29), and PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE (13:50). Then Megan talks about LAST CHRISTMAS (16:09) and Dave fills everyone in on Stephen King’s DOCTOR SLEEP (29:00). Finally, everyone talks about MAKING WAVES: THE ART OF CINEMATIC SOUND (44:55), a documentary about – wait for it – how sound in movies is painstakingly put together.
Before the movies this week Megan and Dave have some questions about an unusual item on Evan’s desk. With their curiosity satisfied, Megan reviews HARRIET (3:58), the epic Harriet Tubman biopic starring the very talented, yet slightly controversial Cynthia Erivo. Next she and Dave cover MOTHERLESS BROOKLYN (20:36), the Edward Norton noir with modern parallels that deserves a better director. Then they all have a blast discussing TERMINATOR: DARK FATE (40:02), the best film in the franchise since T2, because it finally gets what the others were missing: Linda Hamilton.
This week it’s all about the joys of vegan dairy products before a zombie-heavy meal. First Megan describes LITTLE MONSTERS (2:36), a charming zombie flick that deftly balances cuteness with dark humor. Then she reviews THE LIGHTHOUSE (11:10), an atmospheric period piece with surprising queer undertones. Next, Evan and Dave cover GARY GULMAN: THE GREAT DEPRESH (16:47), a hilarious HBO comedy special that also bravely discusses mental health. Megan and Evan follow that up with EL CAMINO: A BREAKING BAD MOVIE (26:28), a shockingly captivating and tense film based on the AMC show. After that Dave and Megan gripe about the incredibly disappointing MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL (38:55). To wrap up, it’s back to the undead for ZOMBIELAND: DOUBLE TAP, a medium funny sequel that has opinions split between our fair co-hosts.
This week Megan blows Evan’s mind when she reveals some shocking new information to him about corn. Yes, corn. She and Dave kick off the show by reviewing the utterly disappointing MEMORY: THE ORIGINS OF ALIEN (3:35), a behind-the-scenes documentary that repeats all the same old stories about Ridley Scott’s beloved 1979 film. Then Evan and Dave cover Martin Scorsese’s often-overlooked gem THE KING OF COMEDY (14:38), detailing why JOKER is such an unsuccessful attempt to mimic it. Next Dave and Megan review LUCY IN THE SKY (23:42), a movie so frustrating they wish they didn’t have to talk about it. The one positive thing they can agree on though, is that Natalie Portman goes for broke with her performance. Lastly, all three of them delve into the Netflix mini-series UNBELIEVABLE (35:27), discussing why its first episode is so infuriating, while expounding upon why it’s such an important examination of trauma and a satisfying police procedural with tremendous performances by its leads Kaitlyn Dever, Merritt Wever, and Toni Collette.
It’s a new era of Spoilerpiece Theatre as new co-host Megan Kearns joins Evan and Dave! Megan kicks things off this week, talking about five films from the BOSTON WOMEN’S FILM FESTIVAL (5:15): PARADISE HILLS, THE AWAKENING OF THE ANTS, ENDZEIT, GOOD POSTURE, and FAST COLOR. (Of note: There are John Candy, Kevin Bacon, DEAD SNOW, and LAST OF US tangents. That’s right! Tangents return!) Evan talks about the Paul Haggis-Dan Krauss documentary 5B (34:05), and then Evan and Dave team up to talk about JOKER (40:55), the Joaquin Phoenix-starring Joker origin story. Be sure to check out our Patreon page where we talk about some psycho stalker movies!
Yes, you read that correctly – after five years as cohost, Kris is leaving the show, but not before he shares some memories of his wedding with Dave and Evan. Then it’s on to the movies! First up, Kris recaps AD ASTRA (17:51), the James Gray film featuring Brad Pitt as an astronaut wrestling with his identity after discovering the true fate of his father. It’s worth a watch, even if it’s not your kind of movie, and may win you over with its great lead performance, excellent visuals, and good intentions. Then it’s ABOMINABLE (29:13), a family movie about a yeti. It’s good, and you won’t hate yourself if you bring your child/niece/nephew/babysittee to kill a few hours. Dave and Evan close things out with MONOS (39:40), a brutal film about child soldiers that is well made, but fails to resonate beyond its fine performances and excellent score.
Kris out on his mini-moon this week so guest Charlie Nash joins Dave and Evan to share his results for the meme “Your Gender Studies Thesis.” After they each get a good chuckle sharing the titles of their fictional papers, Evan reviews TALL GIRL (6:57), a Netflix movie about vertically advantaged high schooler that barely scratches the emotional surface of its main character’s life. Then Dave and Evan recount their experience watching RAÚL JULIÁ: THE WORLD’S A STAGE (18:18), a PBS documentary about the late actor that celebrates his talent, his authenticity, and his inspirational status to Latinx performers everywhere. Next Charlie and Dave delve into HER SMELL (28:50), Alex Ross Perry drama starring Elisabeth Moss that explores the life of a rock star in the throes of addiction. Lastly, Evan and Dave cover LATE NIGHT (44:20), the Mindy Kaling comedy that’s funny and poignant without being preachy.
This week, we’ve got a deep dive on one movie and one movie only: IT CHAPTER TWO! The conclusion of 2017’s smash hit based on the Stephen King novel is in theaters now, and there’s a whole lot of it. Dave, Evan, and Kris look at the movie from a variety of angles, comparing it to its predecessor and weighing its strengths and weaknesses.