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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FEAR STREET: PART ONE – 1994, NO ORDINARY MAN, and ROADRUNNER: A FILM ABOUT ANTHONY BOURDAIN on Episode #366

Maya Hawke crawls away screaming while a killer wearing a skull mask grabs onto her in Leigh Janiak's FEAR STREET: PART ONE - 1994.

FEAR STREET: PART ONE – 1994 offers great homage to 90s slasher movies

Brace yourselves for moving documentaries and Netflix horror this week! First, we discuss NO ORDINARY MAN (2:14), Aisling Chin-Yee and Chase Joynt’s emotional documentary about trans jazz musician Billy Tipton, which features insightful commentary about the trans experience, and seeks to reclaim Tipton’s life story for the trans community. We continue on in documentary territory with Morgan Neville’s ROADRUNNER: A FILM ABOUT ANTHONY BOURDAIN (18:57), a haunting examination of the famous chef/television host’s life, addictions, and loneliness that also beautifully honors his legacy. Last but not least, we dig into FEAR STREET: PART ONE – 1994 (41:39), the fun first installment in Leigh Janiak’s Netflix horror trilogy, which is based on R.L. Stine’s famous book series and stars Kiana Medeira, Olivia Scott Welch, and Benjamin Flores Jr. And in this week’s Patreon bonus audio, we talk about Nora Ephron’s 1998 rom-com YOU’VE GOT MAIL, starring Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks!

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THE KILLING OF TWO LOVERS, THE DJINN, and THE RECKONING on Episode #357

Clayne Crawford stands by himself with his hands in his pockets in the movie The Killing of Two Lovers

Clayne Crawford gives a compelling performance in THE KILLING OF TWO LOVERS

This week Megan is on vacation so we’re joined by guest Lady Wan from the Screen Run podcast! First, we review Neill Marshall’s torturous period horror film THE RECKONING (2:24) about a woman falsely accused of being a witch. Next, we cover David Charbonier and Justin Powell’s tense horror film THE DJINN (16:44), about a mute boy who asks a dark entity to grant his wish. Then, we wrap up with Robert Machoian’s claustrophobic relationship drama THE KILLING OF TWO LOVERS (24:58), about a couple trying to work through their marriage. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we review Alex Cox’s 1984 cult classic REPO MAN

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MOFFIE, THE POWER, and THE TRUFFLE HUNTERS on Episode #352

Kai Luke Brummer looks off into the distance as Nicholas in Oliver Hermanus’ MOFFIE

Kai Luke Brummer gives a soulful performance in MOFFIE

This week we kick off with THE TRUFFLE HUNTERS (1:39), a beautifully shot documentary about the quirky men and their beloved dogs who hunt rare white Alba truffles in Northern Italy. Next, we discuss THE POWER (15:45), Corinna Faith’s compelling albeit predictable horror film about a rookie nurse (Rose Williams) in 1974 London, who encounters a terrifying spirit while working at a hospital during a planned blackout. After that, we review MOFFIE (36:02), Oliver Hermanus’s moving and brutal period drama about a closeted South African soldier (Kai Luke Brummer) trying to survive his military service in the face of severe homophobia and racism. And for our Patreon bonus audio, we discuss the 1940 Howard Hawks screwball comedy HIS GIRL FRIDAY, starring Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell.    

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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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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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CHERRY, I CARE A LOT, THE VIGIL, and BILLIE EILISH: THE WORLD’S A LITTLE BLURRY on Episode #346

Tom Holland in the movie Cherry pointing a revolver right at the camera over a bouquet of flowers

Tom Holland takes aim at a more serious role, but CHERRY is a miss

Dave kicks off this week’s episode with a brief review of R.J. Cutler’s Apple TV+ documentary BILLIE EILISH: THE WORLD’S A LITTLE BLURRY (1:43), which examines the singer-songwriter’s life on the road and at home while she creates her debut album. Next, everyone reviews J Blakeson’s Netflix crime drama/dark comedy I CARE A LOT (8:20), where Rosamund Pike plays a queer woman con artist, a legal guardian whose scheme to take advantage of her elderly wards hits a snag when one of her marks turns out to be more than she seems. Then we talk about Keith Thomas’s unique Jewish horror film THE VIGIL (23:35), about a shomer (Dave Davis) who encounters a demon while providing overnight watch to a deceased member of his former Orthodox Jewish community. We wrap up with Joe and Anthony Russo’s Apple TV+ drama CHERRY (37:04), where Tom Holland is a soldier suffering from PTSD who turns to bank robbing after his drug addiction puts him in serious debt. And in this week’s Patreon bonus audio, we talk about John Landis’s 1988 Eddie Murphy film COMING TO AMERICA, in anticipation of its sequel, which comes out next week.

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SAINT MAUD, MALCOLM & MARIE, THE WANTING MARE, and A NIGHTMARE WAKES on Episode #344

Morfydd Clark looking directly at the camera in a creepy way in the horror movie Saint Maud

Morfydd Clark is supremely creepy in SAINT MAUD.

This week Dave can’t make it, so Dede Crimmins, the Alec Baldwin of Spoilerpiece, fills in! After discussing cats on Zoom, we dive into this week’s movies. First up is Shudder’s A NIGHTMARE WAKES (3:25), Nora Unkel’s period horror flick which follows Mary Shelley as she writes Frankenstein. Next, we review THE WANTING MARE (13:00), Nicholas Ashe Bateman’s surreal fantasy about dreams, longing, and yes, a mare. Then it’s Netflix’s MALCOLM & MARIE (26:43), Sam Levinson’s movie starring Zendaya and John David Washington about a couple’s volatile night of arguments. Finally, we cover SAINT MAUD (46:38), Rose Glass’s outstanding horror film about a pious nurse (Morfydd Clark) who becomes unhealthily obsessed with trying to save her patient’s soul. And on this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we discuss James Cameron’s 1992 film TERMINATOR 2: JUDGMENT DAY.

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THE LITTLE THINGS, SUPERNOVA, and THE QUEEN OF BLACK MAGIC on Episode #342

Denzel Washington and Rami Malek stand on a bridge at night talking closely in the movie The Little Things

Denzel Washington and Rami Malek team up in THE LITTLE THINGS

This week we offer some thoughts on whipped cream before we get to the movies. First, Megan and Evan review Shudder’s Indonesian gory horror film THE QUEEN OF BLACK MAGIC (3:29), about three friends and their families visiting the orphanage where they grew up, directed by Kimo Stamboel. Next, everyone discusses SUPERNOVA (17:05), Harry Macqueen’s heartbreaking queer road trip film where Stanley Tucci and Colin Firth play a gay couple grappling with the fact that one of them has dementia. Then it’s on to THE LITTLE THINGS (37:48), John Lee Hancock’s 90s-set neo-noir crime drama starring Denzel Washington, Rami Malek, and Jared Leto about detectives searching for a serial killer that’s dropping on HBO Max. And on our Patreon exclusive audio this week we discuss RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK, a movie two of us have loved since childhood.

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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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