29 August 2014

June Podcasts!

Episode 55 - What Was The Best Year To Be A Film Student?

Speaking hypothetically, what WOULD have been a good year to have been a film student? Oh for sure no matter what year you pick you're likely still going to have to endure an awful lot of classes about the history of cinema, with the same required viewing of the flickering screen's established giants, Eisenstein, Lang, Wells, Kubrick, Hitchcock or the beloved Mr M Bay.

And you'll be inculcated, willing or otherwise, into the historical landscape of the collapse of the studio monopoly, the rise of the auteur and new wave this and European cinema that ... but at the the end of the day you still have to toddle off down the contemporary big picture house and see and essay upon films of your day.

With this in mind what WOULD have been a good year to have been a film student? This week our three heroes each throw down their own opinions on just that. Starting with Justin who's choice of year will leave you disenchanted with no clear resolution, except perhaps that the status quo you so rebelled against your youth will be what your lurch back towards in our later years as your dreams of a better tomorrow fade in the light of an unsympathetic reality.

All of this lost innocence might prove to be all the angst and cynicism a Film Student could possibly crave for. Ian meanwhile will have none of this. Armed with his three criteria he has selected the best possible year to have fun mucking about making films with your mates ... a highly enjoyable activity you just can't do once this University thing is over with. Also easily digestible movies who's mechanical workings can be extracted and examined upon by even the poorest student of film ... and for the "Film is art Crowd" Ian's year covers them too.

But then in rocks Leo, last but by no means least, who merely has to read off the menu his year has to offer to whet the appetite of Film fans of any conceivable persuasion. But who's year is the best? Lets listen and find out!

Incidental music by Kevin Macleod of incompetech.com

Direct Link: https://archive.org/download/055WhatWasTheBestYearToBeAFilmStudent/055-what-was-the-best-year-to-be-a-film-student.mp3

Episode 56 - The Terminator Wears Prada

Since the dawn of time marketers have been very keen to sort products into various categories from which they can then be successfully advertised to whichever demographic is deemed to purchase them the most. And no greater divide in the free market exists than Men and Women. Apparently two entirely separate life forms with few over lapping interests.

This perverse partition is particularly notable in film, where women are deemed to enjoy romance, cartoon's about princesses and 'based on a true story' movies of the week where women learn the hard way that all men are bastards. Men meanwhile enjoy EVERYTHING else film has to offer and really, if a woman enjoys those too it goes to show how board minded she is in her interests.

This week we debate "Women's Films" and to show how even handed we are a full third of our panel is women. We challenge this cruel division of tastes, brought on mostly by male advertising executives failing to figure out why women watch films, and set about blurring the cultural gender front lines.

Instead we learn Sue likes shopping for shoes and Sex in the City ... perhaps undermining EVERYTHING we set out to do ... so Ian bravely admits to liking one or two 'girl' things himself ... for which Leo calls him queer. With everyone suitably embarrassed for challenging social conventions be assured the usual male dominated hetro-normative perspective will reassert itself next week.

Direct Link: https://archive.org/download/056TheTerminatorWearsPrada/056-the-terminator-wears-prada.mp3

Episode 57 - But It's Not Even Summer Yet!

One of our continuing missions here at our humble podcast is keeping an eye on the Summer releases and every so often taking some time to comment upon them. Well, it's been a while since we made our predictions on this years hits and bombs and we've certainly already had a ton of movies to get through so lets pause and reflect on what the Cinema Summer season has been like so far ... what with actual Summer nearly being upon us.

It really does feel like we've had a years worth already, with it's now standard heap of Superhero movies, mythic and historical epics with a dash of comedy and actual science Fiction creeping into view. While this year is thus far an improvement on the disappointment of the last year one can't help feel a slight wave of film fatigue at it all. We still have so much more to power through ... is that fair to complain about? Shouldn't we want Hollywood to be giving us exciting reasons to head down the multiplex? And yet in this current movie cluster bomb aren't otherwise decent films getting squeezed?

Regardless. Lets join Leo and Ian as they digest this year in cinema so far! Have Marvel's Powers started to fade or are they still this lumbering caped monster of films today? What about Disney? What about Noah? What about that volcano in Pompeii? Well, grab a nice cuppa and come join us for a good old natter about it all. We promise we won't put the whole Kingdom to sleep.

Direct Link: https://archive.org/download/057ButItSNotEvenSummerYet/057-but-it_s-not-even-summer-yet.mp3

Episode 58 - 1995: Conflict At The Heart of the Decade

The year is 1995 ... and it's WAR! Never before has there been a year so divisive and wrought with opinion battle lines. Really it seems like the whole year has been designed to split opinions even after nearly two decades. We start with "Batman Forever" where opinions are at least somewhat united on loathing it, reasons are of course divided as to why but at least everyone is marching in the same general direction.

Bond returns with "Golden Eye" which in our opinion is just about the only Pierce Brosnan 007 that's worth a damn. "Bad Boys" looms into view with it's definitive example of 90's action ... but the long shadow of Michael Bay passes thought it. Oh well .. "Die Hard with a Vengeance" is another oasis of unified opinion. But then comes "Judge Dredd" which Justin, the greatest 2000AD fan in the building, is actually at peace with after the passing years, Leo and Ian are on hand to shake him.

"Johnny Mnemonic" is championed by Leo ... amazingly. Onto "12 Monkey's" which we can all agree is Gilliam's high point .... Leo disagrees. "The Quick at the Dead" proved to be another rare save point for our trio's unity. "Waterworld" is ranked as not that bad not actually a flop by Leo ... "Se7en" however is crucified for it's dumb ending by some. Furious words and insults are exchanged as the team bicker over "Usual Suspect" which Leo still loathes with a burning hatred ... much to the pain of Justin and Ian.

Still at least we can all rally around "Toy Story" and have a group love in on that ... well no .. Justin has harsh words for it. We end with "Hackers" and "Strange Days" which are both rated in turn as 'Terrible' and 'Too Long'. Really that's the year in a nut shell.

Incidental music by Kevin Macleod of incompetech.com

Direct Link: https://archive.org/download/0581995ConflictAtTheHeartOfTheDecade/058-1995-conflict-at-the-heart-of-the-decade.mp3

Episode 59 - La Vengeance Du 80s Enfants

Our humble podcast focuses primarily on the genre films of our era, that being the Horror, Sci Fi, Action and Fantasy. Descending down ... or is that up? ... through our years the observation was made that the foreign language films often take a year or two until they filtered though to us, making a review of them in their year of origin feel just slightly incongruous.

Thus in the wisdom of Leo THIS podcast has been put aside to to reflect and remember those classics. Unfortunately Justin must be off leaving poor Leo and Sue having to make do with Ian, a man who for various explained reasons has barely seen any subtitled films, and those he did were some time ago now and short of buying "Violent Cop" off Amazon or something he doesn't feel like he has many options for watching them legally. Or at least not easy or inexpensive ones.

So sit back and enjoy as Leo leads us on his remembered journey of encountering those foreign language films while Ian again and again assures him he hasn't seen any of them.

Incidental music by Kevin Macleod of incompetech.com

Direct Link: https://archive.org/download/059LaVengeanceDu80sEnfants/059-la-vengeance-du-80s-enfants.mp3