If there is something I love as much as I love movies, it’s probably podcasts in which people talk about them. I think I spend more of my week listening to these fine programs, than I do actually watching movies, so I thought I’d start this new feature, in which I will highlight a particularly good episode each week, as well as a quick round-up of what was going on in some of my favorite podcasts.
Podcast of the Week:
The Canon just released its first episode this week, and I must say that it’s a very promising start. Hosted by Devin Faraci (from Badass Digest) and Amy Nicholson (from L.A. Weekly), the premise of the show has them picking a movie every week, and discussing whether or not it belongs in “the canon”, the list of movies considered to be the cream of the crop of filmmaking. They also put the decision of whether or not the discussed movie should be considered canon in the hands of the listeners, who can vote online. Pretty fun, huh? This first episode had them arguing about Martin Socrsese’s Goodfellas. Devin loves it, while Amy finds it incredibly overrated. This is not specified in their description of the show, but I think they will usually talk about movies they disagree about (there is lots of shouting and interrupting each other in this podcast, in case you get stressed out by that kind of thing).
I’m not incredibly familiar with Faraci’s work, but from what I’ve read, he and I have very different tastes in movies. I also have a fairly different taste from Amy Nicholson, but I can’t help but find her particular point of view to be fascinating, even when she’s dissing movies I love. As far as this episode is concerned, I think Amy raises some incredible points, but then again, I’m one of those people who never found Goodfellas that amazing to begin with, and who is going through a phase in which I’m starting to think Scorsese *gasp* might not be that great a filmmaker after all. Anyway, if you want to decide for yourself if Goodfellas does or doesn’t belong in “the canon”, head over and listen to their show. I definitely recommend it.
Movie Podcast Round-Up:
Battleship Pretension. Probably my favorite film podcast, this wasn’t a particularly exciting week as far as my personal enjoyment is concerned. This is basically their Halloween episode, as David and Tyler have independent filmmaker Danny Valentine to discuss horror movies from the 80s. Horror is one of my least favorite genres, so I’m very lacking in knowledge about the topic they were talking about. That being said, this show is always insightful, and there is a lot of very interesting discussion about Danny’s life as an independent filmmaker.
Fighting in the War Room. Joanna Robinson takes the reigns this week, and what seems to be her last week with the show. The big topic is the current state of the Romantic Comedy. It’s an entertaining episode, as usual, but not a particularly great one (these guys can get into better, more heated, discussions). Meanwhile, the Review segment, which deals mostly with Interstellar, but also a little bit with Big Hero 6, raises some very interesting arguments.
The Film Experience Podcast. You can always count on Nathaniel and his co-hosts to bring fresh takes to movies you think have been talked to death. This time, they do a pretty awesome job of discussing Birdman, with Nathaniel loving it, while Joe Reid has major reservations. And they made me very interested in seeing Pride, a British independent I had heard about, but wasn’t particularly excited about.
Filmspotting. They review Nightcrawler, which I haven’t seen, so I don’t have much to say about this episode, except that it didn’t make me particularly excited to watch the movie, which you can interpret whichever way you want. Their poll question this week, however, asks what filmmaker you think could direct the next 2001: A Space Odyssey, so I’m definitely gonna vote, even if my answer (Jonathan Glazer) is not one of the options.
Pop Culture Happy Hour. Like the name of the show suggests, the conversation is not always about movies, but this week, Linda Holmes and friends talk about Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar, as well as other “realistic” science fiction movies. A lot of good points are raised, especially by Glen Weldon, who is as funny as always, as he points out that the genre i called “science fiction, not science boring”.