This week starts with a critique of how this year’s Oscar nominations (2:25) shamefully overlook women and people of color. Then Megan reviews three movies. First, LITTLE JOE (11:15), a sci-fi film with gorgeous cinematography. Second, UNDERWATER (21:25), a fantastic monster movie starring Kristen Stewart. Third, THE GRUDGE (32:45), a reboot that left her wanting more. Lastly, Dave and Evan take on THE WAVE (41:34), a convoluted sci-fi flick with Justin Long that never adds up.
Friend of the show Charlie Nash returns to Spoilerpiece! This week kicks off with the highs, lows, and low-lows of this year’s Oscars (1:39). The show benefited from no host and some deserving folks got some trophies, but unfortunately ended with the worst Best Picture winner in at least a decade. Then, Charlie takes us through CLIMAX (22:15), a true spectacle from Gaspar Noé. It’s everything you expect from the French boundary-pusher, condensed into his most compelling — and least forgiving — experiment yet. The gang wraps things up with GRETA (31:20), a campy, trashy good time from Neil Jordan starring the immortal Isabelle Huppert.
Things are a bit different this week at Spoilerpiece as technical glitches force us to employ some improvised recording methods, so please excuse any changes in pacing/audio quality! Dave couldn’t be here, so Evan and Kris are joined by special guest critic Kristen Halbert of Forces of Geek, who describes some rather unique experiences at Comic-Con. Kris fell short of his goal to watch everything nominated for an Oscar in every category — 51 out of 59 films — and gives his thoughts on some of the categories he felt were a bit off (5:23). Then it’s on to the main event, A WRINKLE IN TIME (14:02), Ava DuVernay’s valiant and heartfelt attempt to adapt the unadaptable and beloved novel by Madeleine L’Engle. All three hosts were touched in some way, and though it occasionally suffers from odd pacing and other issues, it can be quite dazzling and powerful when it works. A definite see!
And of course, for your viewing pleasure, Evan and Kris sharing a microphone after some technical difficulties.
At the show’s outset, the guys wonder what a wiki site run by Kris would be like, before they dive into this week’s movies. First, Kris regales Dave and Evan with his thoughts on the cinematic implications of the Chinese/American collaboration THE GREAT WALL (at 3:06), an action film with Matt Damon in a non-white savior role that has great creature design, but ultimately is really dumb. Then Evan spoilerpieces FIST FIGHT (at 26:43), a completely nonsensical, failure of a comedy, that has bloopers funnier than its entire hour and a half runtime. Lastly, he and Dave explore I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO (at 45:42), the Oscar-nominated documentary that describes what it’s like to be black in America through the words of author James Baldwin. The brilliant insights Baldwin reveals really resonate with them intellectually and emotionally, although the documentary’s dense content prompts them to recommend more than one viewing, to take in all of its poignant commentary.
Baby Henry is under the weather, prompting Dave to quarantine himself – so guest Dede Crimmins joins Evan and Kris this week to talk about the ‘90s and lots of film-related topics. Dede fills the guys in on her latest adventures, which include recording a DVD commentary, and participating on panels at the Arisia science fiction convention. Following some philosophical discussion about horror, Dede shares three movies to look out for this year (at 13:00): RAW, THE BAD BATCH, and COLOSSAL. After that, she and the guys discuss the 2017 Oscar nominations (at 21:52), revealing surprises and disappointments in the major categories. Finally, all three of them review this week’s new release GOLD (at 33:50), the Matthew McConaughey gold prospecting movie that Kris describes as AMERICAN HUSTLE on NyQuil. Evan and Dede find it charming for McConaughey’s spirited performance as a balding, overweight, drunk, but they admit that they’ll probably forget it in a week.
This week the guys talk about bread (yeah, that’s right, bread) before Evan shares some BIG news. Then Kris starts things off by talking about ZOOTOPIA, a hard-PG Disney film about racism. His commentary leads to an odd tangent about Tom Selleck and a brief tangent on politics. Afterward, he, Dave, and Evan discuss BILL & TED’S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE, one of their favorite dumb movies. The guys comment on how fast-paced and lean it is with its perfect dialogue, while sharing visual gags and suspect editing they didn’t notice in previous viewings. In the process of reviewing it, they delve into BILL & TED’S BOGUS JOURNEY and the BILL & TED cartoon too. In the final part of the show, they express their gripes with this year’s Oscars. They also get into lengthy discussions about the Best Original Screenplay category by way of EX MACHINA and the Best Original Song category by way of Sam Smith. Speaking of songs, stick around after the closing credits for Dave’s fresh take on a Beatles classic.
Dave starts out by sharing good things about his new outlet, which makes his transition into Riedel’s Recaps quite easy. This time he offers his take on THE MARTIAN, which he really liked despite some miscasting and misacting. It also scored bonus points because it didn’t wake Baby Henry. After a tangent on INTERSTELLAR, Evan jumps in with his opinion about MOJAVE (pronounced MO-JAYVE according to Dave), a movie starring Garrett Hedlund (not Charlie Hunnam) and Oscar Isaac, where pretentious people talk about pretentious things. It’s a shitty movie that actually caused Evan to root against its asshole protagonist. Following tangents about THE DEPARTED, EX MACHINA, and STAR TREK IV, the guys discuss their thoughts on #OscarsSoWhite and the new changes the Academy is making to promote diversity (hint: they like them). Finally, Dave and Kris review THE FINEST HOURS, a B-movie with an A-budget, where only three things happen. Even though nothing happened, it was long enough to make Kris regret not peeing beforehand, so that was something.