THE SHAPE OF WATER, THE DARKEST HOUR, and Crewind on Episode #178

Sally Hawkins staring at amphibious creature in THE SHAPE OF WATER.

Sally Hawkins romancing a manfish in THE SHAPE OF WATER.

We kick off this week’s Spoilerpiece with a Crewind — also known as Evan Can Wait and God Save the Crean — in which Evan recaps his experiences with LOGAN (eh), BATTLE OF THE SEXES (good), and LAST FLAG FLYING (wow) (4:02, 9:30, 15:29 respectively). Next up is Dave with THE DARKEST HOUR (20:11), in which Gary Oldman portrays Winston Churchill in the earliest days of Britain’s involvement in World War II. It’s a bit of a recitation of well-established facts, but Oldman doing anything can never be totally boring, making this a mixed bag. Last up is all three guys with Guillermo del Toro’s THE SHAPE OF WATER (32:11). If you like del Toro, you know what to expect. If you don’t, well, you also know what to expect, only moreso.

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FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM, NOCTURNAL ANIMALS, and More on Episode #123

fantastic-beasts

FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM (i.e. inside Eddie Redmayne’s suitcase)

We’ve got movies coming out the wazoo this week! First, Dave and Kris tackle the ambitious Harry Potter prequel FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM (at 4:00), which tries to cram five movies into one. Much to their annoyance, only three of those five movies are good. Next, Dave explores NOCTURNAL ANIMALS (at 24:56), writer/director/fashion designer Tom Ford’s sophomore film. It has two stories about toxic masculinity that don’t add up to a whole movie, so during the review Kris develops a new segment called “Dr. Kris, Medicine Man,” where he shares how he’d fix the film. Following that segment, Dave offers his brief thoughts on the music documentaries OASIS: SUPERSONIC and RUSH: TIME STAND STILL, which only seem to be for diehard fans. Evan bats cleanup with three more movies from the Boston Jewish Film Festival (at 51:00): the mediocre crime thriller A GRAIN OF TRUTH, the emotionally compelling documentary FREEDOM TO MARRY, and the thought-provoking comedy doc THE LAST LAUGH.

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COMPLETE UNKNOWN, THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS, THE INNOCENTS, and MORGAN on Episode #112

Light between oceans

Alicia Vikander and Michael Fassbender in THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS.

Dave is feeling under the weather so fan favorite Dede Crimmins joins Evan and Kris this week. She and Kris lead off by discussing the Massachusetts Independent Film Festival (at 5:02). They share a few of their favorite films, before Dede transitions into COMPLETE UNKNOWN (at 11:41). Dede finds Rachel Weisz’s character fascinating in it, but she wishes there was more to the movie’s simple plot. Next, Kris talks about how war leaves scars long after hostilities end in THE INNOCENTS (at 21:32), a heavy post-World War II film about rescuing babies. Then Evan and Dede review THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS (at 35:46), a long, slow drama about babies and post-war tensions that also stars Rachel Weisz and features Michael Fassbender as a brooding lighthouse hunk. Dede wraps everything up with MORGAN (at 54:16) a mashup of SPLICE, EX MACHINA, and BLADE RUNNER that has the most wasted cast she has ever seen and an ending that thinks it’s clever without actually being clever.

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EVERYBODY WANTS SOME!!, MIDNIGHT SPECIAL, and PEE-WEE’S BIG HOLIDAY on Episode #90

Everybody Wants Some

EVERYBODY WANTS SOME!! starts out bro-ey, but gets much better when these baseball players are dropped outside of their element at a punk show.

Following a free product plug for one of those mail-in shave clubs, Kris offers a correction from the previous episode. After a few minutes of Dave’s thoughts on BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE, Evan and Kris talk about EVERYBODY WANTS SOME!! Richard Linklater’s movie is bro-ey and says the word pussy a lot, but after its first 30-45 minutes both Evan and Kris really started to enjoy it. Next, Kris describes MIDNIGHT SPECIAL, a film starring Michael Shannon that’s about a kid who is special. It has people talking obliquely in a car, which annoys Kris, although it does have some really inspired sci-fi elements. The conversation leads to a tangent on Michael Shannon’s weird handsomeness, before Dave and Evan dive into PEE-WEE’S BIG HOLIDAY, which is basically PEE-WEE’S BIG ADVENTURE with a smaller budget, better music, and a less insane director. Still, they both dig its humor and find it hilarious. Finally, Kris wraps up with a half review of HELLO MY NAME IS DORIS, a film he wanted to make a prediction on before seeing the rest. How will it end? Find out in next week’s episode!

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Episode #71: THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2, THE NIGHT BEFORE, and TRUMBO

Seth Rogen and Jillian Bell in THE NIGHT BEFORE

Nothing like tripping balls in church. Take it from Seth Rogen in THE NIGHT BEFORE.

Somehow, saucy puppet shows and Clippy from MS Word are topics of discussion heading into this week’s episode. Evan and Kris lead things off by talking about THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – PART 2, which neither of them is particularly enthused about or invested in. As people who aren’t really into the series, they can admit that it’s good for what it is, and that fans will probably enjoy it as a conclusion to the franchise. Then Dave and Kris talk TRUMBO, which Dave claims is a sequel to DUMBO. This HBO movie looks and feels like it belongs on TV. It’s too long and fairly one note, although it does have some good things going on. Lastly, Evan spoilerpieces THE NIGHT BEFORE, a Christmas comedy starring Seth Rogen, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Anthony Mackie as childhood friends looking for one last epic holiday blowout. Its dramatic elements don’t work and JGL isnt’ believable as the group’s loser, but it does make use of great comedians in small roles. Michael Shannon is its surprise MVP.

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