By The Numbers, by Reed Lackey

25 May

Star Wars as a franchise seems to have a complicated relationship with telling the beginnings of stories. The highly divisive and frequently maligned prequels to the original trilogy remain the low bar by which all other entries in the franchise are measured. It’s even riskier, then, for the franchise to begin to tell even more “stories-before-the-stories” with their recent entry Rogue One, and the latest installment: Solo.

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The Fear of God: Oculus

22 May

In this episode, Reed and Nathan discuss Mike Flanagan’s Oculus.

Maximum Effort, by Bob Connally

22 May

Two years ago much was made about the surprisingly massive success of Deadpool. Many attributed it to the film being a highly irreverent and decidedly R-rated superhero comedy that subverted expectations. This somewhat reductive view made me concerned that we would begin to be inundated with knockoffs made by people who didn’t really understand just what it was that made Deadpool work. I could practically hear studio heads saying, “A superhero who swears a lot and makes pop culture references?! That’s gold, baby! We gotta get us one of those!”

On top of that, Deadpool wasn’t even the first highly irreverent, decidedly R-rated superhero comedy that subverted expectations. It wasn’t even the first this decade. Both Kick-Ass and Super (which was directed by a pre-Guardians of the Galaxy James Gunn) had gone that route relatively recently. What made Deadpool special and such a wildly funny and entertaining movie was the passion and personality that star Ryan Reynolds brought to it.

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The Fear of God: Happy Death Day

15 May

In this episode, Reed and Nathan discuss Christopher Landon’s Happy Death Day.

The Fear of God: The Lottery

8 May

In this episode, Reed and Nathan discuss Shirley Jackson’s short story The Lottery.

Two Geek Soup: Guardians of the Galaxy, vol. 2

3 May

In this episode, John and Jeff discuss James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy, vol. 2.

Listen to “Ep. 15 “It’s too bad he’s just on an asteroid now and not a planet”” on Spreaker.

At What Price Victory?, by John Viinalass

2 May

Woof.

I’m not one given to profanity, but at the end of Infinity War, I found an expletive to be the only concise way of reacting to the emotional gut-punch I had just experienced. As the first part of a climax to a decade-long cinematic journey, Avengers: Infinity War wields its dramatic heft with far greater grace than you would expect from a two-and-a-half-hour long long summer blockbuster.
Note: Spoilers after the jump.

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Classics Through the Cracks: Hud, by Bob Connally

2 May

Citizen Kane. Casablanca. Lawrence of Arabia. Dr. Strangelove. Films considered by virtually all movie buffs to be amongst the greatest ever made. Classics. But there are so many wonderful movies that for one reason or another have fallen through the cracks and don’t get the recognition they truly deserve. In this series I will be writing about and hopefully encouraging people to discover the classics that they’ve been missing. Movies like Real Life, Bad Day at Black Rock, and L.A. Story just to name a few. I’ll be looking at the film, the era in which it was released, and other popular movies released in that era. For my third entry in this series I will be writing about 1963’s Hud, directed by Martin Ritt.

Through its opening shots, Hud conveys the stark, dying West that its characters inhabit. While the film was set in the present (1963), it is the story of people either hanging onto, kicking against, or simply existing in a corner of the world that has been left behind by the rest of it. While Hud Bannon (Paul Newman) is the movie’s titular character, Martin Ritt’s film is really concerned with the heart and mind of Hud’s 17-year old nephew, Lonnie (Brandon De Wilde) and what path he will ultimately choose.

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The Fear of God: A Quiet Place

1 May

In this episode, Reed and Nathan discuss John Krasinski’s A Quiet Place.

Total Commitment, by Tyler Smith

25 Apr

Six years ago, at the end of Joss Whedon’s The Avengers, the Marvel Cinematic Universe promised to become even bigger than it already was. By briefly teasing the eventual appearance of cosmic villain Thanos, they alluded to one of the biggest events in comic book history, The Infinity Gauntlet. Remembering the tragic events of that series, I found myself wondering just how far the MCU was willing to go. With Avengers: Infinity War, I finally have my answer. Directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, this film is every bit as enjoyable, daring, and vital as any superhero movie in history. It needed to take the genre to a new level of hopelessness, committing to genuine life and death stakes. And, while it may not feature the mass death of the comic book series, its fatalistic tone is everything that I was hoping for.

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