This week we start by recapping our thoughts on the 2021 Oscars! We talk about he winners we loved, the nominees we wished won, the ceremony’s unconventional format, and the heartfelt acceptance speeches that moved us. Next, we discuss Rodrigo García’s FOUR GOOD DAYS (22:47), a challenging and raw mother/daughter drama about addiction, starring Glenn Close and Mila Kunis. After that, we review LIMBO (37:11), Ben Sharrock’s disarmingly moving, poignant, and compelling drama about a Syrian refugee (Amir El-Masry) stuck in rural Scotland while he awaits his asylum request. We wrap up with TOM CLANCY’S WITHOUT REMORSE (49:37), Stefano Sollima’s disappointing action flick starring Michael B. Jordan. And in this week’s Patreon exclusive audio, we review the winner of our hair poll: Paddy Breathnach’s 2001 film BLOW DRY.
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.
Oprah the All-Powerful is fantastic in Disney’s A WRINKLE IN TIME.
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!
Matt Damon fights alongside the Chinese in THE GREAT WALL
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.
Matthew McConaughey and Edgar Ramirez bromancing in GOLD
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.
Ginnifer Goodwin plays police officer Judy Hops in ZOOTOPIA, a bunny cop movie.
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.
“I don’t give a crap about your opinion, Tris. Just be glad I’m not grabbing you by the wrist again.”
“He marries her vindictively? Let’s analyze that statement.” In what kind of film does someone get married vindictively? In a film like THE GUNMAN (or in this case, specifically THE GUNMAN). Kris hated it so much he could barely get through spoilerpiecing it for Dave and Evan. They didn’t do much better with INSURGENT; Evan liked it. Dave didn’t. It’s YA action, adventure, and romance at its most bland (that’s what Dave thinks, anyway). And Kris touches briefly on Godard’s GOODBYE TO LANGUAGE. Tangents this week include reality TV shows that we wish existed so we could watch them; old-guy-killin’ movies; Dave’s dislike of Ray Winstone performances; the old, fat villain in COMMANDO; and we break down what Kris means when he says, “Sean Penn has made movies before?”
Hey! It’s just like the mirror trick in the first movie! But this time we’re older and it’s also totally not funny or inventive!
Ooh! We got your Oscar talk right here! So we’re talking about the glitz, glamor and gauche nonsense that is the Academy Awards. But first we hit the movies we saw this week. Kris made it through THE DUFF, a high school movie that, for Kris, doesn’t rank among the great high school movies. Then Evan and Dave saw HOT TUB TIME MACHINE 2—and they’re dumber for it. On the plus side, we rip on the Oscars. Dave GOES OFF on the Oscar voter featured in “The Hollywood Reporter,” Kris enlightens us with jobs at NASA with funny names, and Evan explains the reason for his particular pronunciation of the word “biopic.”