MALIGNANT, DATING & NEW YORK, and MY NAME IS PAULI MURRAY on Episode #375

We open the show by reviewing Julie Cohen and Betsy West’s compelling documentary MY NAME IS PAULI MURRAY (2:01). The film celebrates the life of Pauli Murray, a non-binary lawyer, poet, and priest, who you’ve probably never heard of, but definitely should have because of their enormous impact on civil rights in the U.S. Next, we take on Jonah Feingold’s DATING & NEW YORK (20:04), a disappointingly derivative rom-com that’s neither rom nor com to any of us. Lastly, we cover James Wan’s MALIGNANT (38:48), a bonkers film that we all had a blast watching, and have just as much fun spoiling, but has us arguing whether it qualifies as “horror” or a “psychological thriller.” And on this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about the 2009 Richard Curtis film PIRATE RADIO aka THE BOAT THAT ROCKED. 

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ANNETTE, JOHN AND THE HOLE, and PRAY AWAY on Episode #369

Adam Driver wears a motorcycle helmet as he's about to kiss Marion Cotillard in the movie Annette

ANNETTE is bizarre and ambitious, but also grating as a musical

This week we start by discussing Kristine Stolakis’s compelling Netflix documentary PRAY AWAY (1:33), which chronicles the “pray the gay away” movement and forces its former leaders to confront the damage it did to the LGBTQ+ community. Next, we cover Pascual Sisto’s frustrating and listless film JOHN AND THE HOLE (21:14), about a boy who holds his family (Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Ehle, and Taissa Farmiga) captive in a hole. We wrap up with Leos Carax’s bizarre and grating musical ANNETTE (35:14), starring Adam Driver, Marion Cotillard, and Simon Helberg (or as two of us know him, that guy from THE BIG BANG THEORY). And in our Patreon exclusive audio, we travel back to 1941 to talk about the Preston Sturges comedy SULLIVAN’S TRAVELS, starring Joel McCrea and Veronica Lake! 

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JAKOB’S WIFE, MONDAY, VOYAGERS, and TINA on Episode #353

Barbara Crampton wearing sunglasses inside pushing a shopping cart at a grocery store in the horror movie Jakob's Wife

Barbara Crampton does some unusual shopping in JAKOB’S WIFE

We start the show this week with TINA (1:41), the comprehensive HBO Max documentary about music icon Tina Turner, who we all love, but one of us much more than the others. Next, we review VOYAGERS (16:07), Neil Burger’s LORD OF THE FLIES on a spaceship, a sci-fi thriller that gets us all extremely riled up. Then we discuss MONDAY (31:23), the Argyris Papadimitropoulos romantic drama starring Sebastian Stan and Denise Gough, which two of us HATE and one of us likes. Lastly, we dig into JAKOB’s WIFE (45:46), the delightful Travis Stevens horror comedy starring the always entertaining Barbara Crampton. And on this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about Billy Wilder’s quintessential film noir DOUBLE INDEMNITY.

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GODZILLA VS KONG, ZACK SNYDER’S JUSTICE LEAGUE, WOLFWALKERS, and WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED: A HISTORY OF FOLK HORROR on Episode #351

Godzilla and King Kong fight each other above a city in the movie Godzilla vs Kong

Godzilla squares off with King Kong in GODZILLA VS. KONG

Dave keeps knives in his microwave?! Find out why this week. We kick off our reviews with ZACK SNYDER’S JUSTICE LEAGUE (4:21), a four-hour cut of the 2017 superhero film, which for better and worse, represents its original director’s vision. Next, we talk about the heartwarming Oscar-nominated animated fantasy tale WOLFWALKERS (20:04) by Tomm Moore and Ross Stewart of Cartoon Saloon. After that, we cover Kier-La Janisse’s three-hour documentary WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED: A HISTORY OF FOLK HORROR (28:59), which screened at SXSW and offers a fascinating dissection of folk horror films. Our main event is GODZILLA VS. KONG (43:00), a kaiju movie directed by Adam Wingard with some entertaining fights that’s, unfortunately, lacking in many other departments. And for our Patreon exclusive audio, we follow up on our recent PRETTY IN PINK discussion by talking about the John Hughes/Howard Deutch film SOME KIND OF WONDERFUL

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SXSW 2021: LANGUAGE LESSONS, DEAR MR. BRODY, and SOUND OF VIOLENCE on Episode #350

In a split-screen from the movie Language Lessons, Mark Duplass stretches his face in a funny way, while Natalia Morales laughs

Natalie Morales and Mark Duplass are both wonderful in LANGUAGE LESSONS

This week we open with a statement in support of the Asian American community. Then we discuss some movies that played at this year’s SXSW. Evan and Megan cover SOUND OF VIOLENCE (2:52), Alex Noyer’s brutal horror film about a college student (Jasmin Savoy Brown) who sees euphoric colors when she hears violent sounds and finds herself chasing a synesthetic high at all costs. Next, we talk about Keith Maitland’s uneven yet intriguing documentary DEAR MR. BRODY (14:30), which tells the story of Michael Brody Jr., who inherited $25 million (an heir to a margarine fortune) in 1970 and publicly offered to give anyone money who asked him for it. Last, but certainly not least, we review the delightful Natalie Morales directorial debut, LANGUAGE LESSONS (27:37), about a Spanish teacher (Morales) and her student (Mark Duplass) who have remote classes over video chat and form a surprising bond. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we discuss this year’s Oscar nominations, including our favorites and some films we wish had been nominated.

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THE COURIER, SLAXX, LUDI, and OPERATION VARSITY BLUES: THE COLLEGE ADMISSIONS SCANDAL on Episode #349

Merab Ninidze and Benedict Cumberbatch glance furtively as they talk quietly at night on a city street in the movie The Courier

Merab Ninidze and Benedict Cumberbatch try to keep things on the down-low in the Cold War spy thriller THE COURIER

Dave and Megan kick off this week’s episode by discussing LUDI (2:09), Edson Jean’s drama about a Haitian nurse chasing the American Dream. Next, everyone reviews Chris Smith’s Netflix documentary OPERATION VARSITY BLUES: THE COLLEGE ADMISSIONS SCANDAL (12:38), which delves into the notorious scheme by celebrities and wealthy individuals to sneak their kids into prestigious universities. Then, we cover SLAXX (22:58), Elza Kephart’s horror-comedy about a killer pair of pants…yeah that’s right, pants. We wrap up with THE COURIER (37:45), Dominic Cooke’s Cold War thriller about a British spy (Benedict Cumberbatch) who works with a Russian source to help stop the Cuban Missile Crisis. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we talk about THE SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE, the winner of our women-directed horror movies poll.

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MINARI, FRAMING BRITNEY SPEARS, SHOOK, and SATOR on Episode #345

Steven Yeun, Han Ye-ri, Alan Kim, Noel Kate Cho, and Youn Yuh-jung in Lee Isaac Chung's MINARI

We kick off this week’s show with SATOR (2:01), Jordan Graham’s atmospheric horror film about a demon pursuing multiple generations of a forest-dwelling family. Then Megan and Evan review SHOOK (14:09), Jennifer Harrington’s social media-infused horror movie on Shudder. Next, everyone discusses the documentary FRAMING BRITNEY SPEARS (25:49), an episode of THE NEW YORK TIMES PRESENTS series that focuses Britney Spears, the conservatorship controlling her life, and the sexism and misogyny in media that has impacted her life and career. We wrap up with Isaac Lee Chung’s poignant drama MINARI (42:25), which follows a Korean American family’s attempt to start a farm in 1980s Arkansas, starring Steven Yeun, Han Ye-ri, Alan Kim, Noel Kate Cho, and Youn Yuh-jung. And on this week’s Patreon bonus audio, we review a Patron’s choice: Walter Hill’s 1979 action film, THE WARRIORS.

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UNCLE FRANK, PRINCESS OF THE ROW, ANIMALS, and THE MYSTERY OF D.B. COOPER on Episode #333

Paul Bettany, Sophia Lillis, and Peter Macdissi stand with their hands on a car in the movie Uncle FrankWe hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving Spoilerpeeps! This week we start with ANIMALS (3:13), a drama about hard partying best friends (Holliday Grainger, Alia Shawkat), struggling to grow up. Then it’s the HBO documentary THE MYSTERY OF D.B. COOPER (14:53) about the infamous plane hijacker. Next, it’s PRINCESS OF THE ROW (28:05), a drama about a teen (Taylor Buck) struggling to care for her homeless veteran father (Edi Gathegi). Finally we discuss UNCLE FRANK (41:19), Alan Ball’s 1960s road trip film where a closeted gay uncle (Paul Bettany) and his niece (Sophia Lillis) travel home for the funeral of their patriarch. In this week’s Patreon bonus audio, we talk about the winner of our November poll, Chris Eyre’s 1998 film SMOKE SIGNALS.

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HAPPIEST SEASON, LEAP OF FAITH: WILLIAM FRIEDKIN ON THE EXORCIST, TIME, and THE DARK AND THE WICKED on Episode #332

The family in the film Happiest Season posing together for a family photoDave and Megan lead off this week with Bryan Bertino’s tense possession horror flick THE DARK AND THE WICKED (2:43). Appropriately, the next film on the docket is LEAP OF FAITH: WILLIAM FRIEDKIN ON THE EXORCIST (17:44), a fascinating documentary about the iconic possession horror film. Next they talk about TIME (32:34), a poignant documentary about a woman’s fight to free her husband from prison. Finally, they discuss HAPPIEST SEASON (42:48), Clea DuVall’s moving queer Christmas rom-com, starring Kristen Stewart and Mackenzie Davis. In this week’s Patreon bonus audio, we have a blast covering James Cameron’s sci-fi action film ALIENS, which is Megan’s all-time favorite movie.

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THE TRIP TO GREECE, THE PAINTER AND THE THIEF, and MILITARY WIVES on Episode #306

Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan at a restaurant table by the water talking to each other in the film The Trip to Greece

This week is Cerealpiece Theatre before we talk about movies! First up is MILITARY WIVES (5:15), a cozy yet predictable film about sparring military spouses (Kristin Scott Thomas and Sharon Horgan) trying to manage a choir when their husbands are deployed. Next is THE PAINTER AND THE THIEF (18:47), a moving documentary about a painter and a thief’s fascinating relationship. Then, it’s THE TRIP TO GREECE (38:40), the funny but somber final film in The TRIP series with Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon. On our Patreon bonus episode we discuss the winner of our tearjerker poll: DEAD POETS SOCIETY.

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