Month: July 2016

GTGM Episode 32: Personal Best (1982)

They had one job. Doug and Jamie only had one job during the 1980 Olympic trials and that was to make sure to bring the tarp that covers the long jump in case of rain. Doug thought Jamie had it and Jamie thought Doug had it. Needless to say, they were both harshly reprimanded and had their athletic (speed walking) scholarships revoked.


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Criterion Close-Up 45: In a Lonely Place & Humphrey Bogart Films

Mark and Aaron are joined by Matt Gasteier to explore Nicholas Ray’s In a Lonely Place (1950) and evaluate Humphrey Bogart’s body of work. We go into how Ray’s life informed the cinema, why he wasn’t celebrated during his time and subsequently appreciated later. We also go through Bogart’s entire career, from getting his lucky break to becoming a superstar.

Episode Links & Notes

Special Guest: Matt Gasteier from Criterion on the Brain and Criterion by Spine. You can follow him on Twitter.

0:00 – Welcome and New Music!

2:25 – Welcome Matt!

6:20 – Matt’s Criterion Connection

14:40 – In a Lonely Place

1:06 – Humphrey Bogart

Episode Credits

Next time on the podcast: North of the Border

The Magic Lantern: Episode 025 – La Ciénaga

I first saw Lucrecia Martel’s debut feature, La Ciénaga (2001), in late 2008 and I have been thinking about it ever since. I was so thoroughly impressed with the clarity and completeness of her vision and her obvious self-possession that the images and, crucially, the sounds are never that far from my mind. That’s a testament to her consummate skill as a filmmaker and it also a testament to the man who programmed the film for that fateful evening, Chale Nafus. I was a fledgling member of the Austin Film Society back then and one of the first series I ever attended was More Than Buenos Aires: Film Renaissance in Argentina. Needless to say, I was smitten. Chale introduced me to a woman that remains one of my favorite directors to this day. Take the inscrutability of Claire Denis, the skill with actors and ability to make the carefully written look as if it sprang forth from the most fierce improvisation of John Cassavetes and the wary reverence for the unsentimental chaos of the natural world of Werner Herzog and you’re starting to get the idea of what La Ciénaga feels like. She brings all these skills to bear on the dismantling of her childhood and exposing the decadent and declining leisure class of Argentina. It really is something to behold. She’s a powerhouse.

What you’ll find in this episode: Madonnas, whores and drunks, African rat-dogs, top flight cousining, thunder, gunshots and brackish water.

– Cole

Links and Recommendations:
Check out La Ciénaga on IMDB.
Ericca’s further viewing pick of Apartment Zero.
Cole’s further viewing pick of The Holy Girl.
Some background on the New Argentine Cinema.
A brief history of the Mandragora.

Criterion Close-Up 44: A Brighter Summer Day

Mark and Aaron are joined by Scott Nye to hash out the intricate themes, history, and nuance of Edward Yang’s A Brighter Summer Day. Given the length and depth of the film, we explored it in detail, distilling the cultural and societal clashes that took place in a pivotal period of Chinese and Taiwanese history. We also compare it to what is considered Yang’s other masterpiece, Yi Yi, and we touch on the New Taiwanese Cinema movement.

Episode Links & Notes

Special Guest: Scott Nye from CriterionCast and Battleship Pretension. You can follow him on Twitter.

0:00 – Hello and Welcome Scott

2:25 – Scott’s Criterion Connection

5:10 – Film School in a Cast

8:00 – A Brighter Summer Day

25:00 – Spoiler Warning

1:14:45 – Ratings. No spoilers.

Episode Credits

Next time on the podcast: In a Lonely Place, Bogie Films

GTGM Episode 31: Red Sonja (1985)

Doug and Jamie return from a hunting expedition to find their city burned to the ground and their boy king screaming at some large oaf. After considering staying with the king, they ultimately flee to the middle of the desert, where they die of thirst less than a week later. Even in their last moments though, they know they made the right decision.

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Criterion Completion: Hour 2



We’re on a roll, folks. The Criterion Completion Hour 2 is on the air.

Join me for another hour of more Completioning. Come listen as I take you down the rabbit hole of spine numbering in the lawless days of the Criterion laser disc. Then stick around for a great primer on all things to know where David Blakeslee and the Criterion Collection intersect. We could have talked for hours, somehow we kept it under one.

In between we’ll hear a snippet or three from Big Audio Dynamite, Oliver Stone, Sadhguru, Sam Lowry, and a few other surprises.

  • Welcome, welcome, welcome to Hour 2, 2, 2!
  • keeproductions presents Spinal Destination | 7m 21s
  • A conversation with David Blakeslee | 18m 47s

David Blakeslee

Criterion Reflections at CriterionCast

Keith Enright

keith (at)



The post Hour 2 appeared first on The Criterion Completion.

Criterion Close-Up 43: The Player

Mark and Aaron welcome old friend, Doug McCambridge to talk about Robert Altman’s “Don’t call it a” comeback. We touch on the opening tracking shot, what Altman is saying about Hollywood, and yes, we even go into the ending — or both of them. On top of that, we give some tidbits on how to be economical with the Barnes & Noble Criterion Sale.

Episode Links & Notes

Special Guest: Doug McCambridge from Good Times, Great Movies. You can find them on Facebook, Twitter.

0:00 – Intro and Welcome Doug

4:00 – Doug’s Announcement

7:30 – Thank Ben Model

9:20 – Criterion Completion

12:35 – Barnes and Noble Sale

22:00 – The Player

Episode Credits

Next time on the podcast: A Brighter Summer Day

The Magic Lantern: Episode 024 – Psycho

You may think you know all there is to know about Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960). Watch it again. Right now.

Joseph Stefano (from Robert Bloch’s novel) adapted a corker of a suspense tale centered around a deeply troubling, even Gothic, family history, and a false protagonist set to remedy a very big mistake. Alfred Hitchcock played on our voyeuristic tendencies and our dark desires, and forged something enduring and kinetic, without letting stodginess take over.

The Alfred Hitchcock Presents TV crew and the use of multiple cameras created an eye that floats, flits, hovers, caresses, pinpoints and finally eviscerates our preconceived notions. Most certainly the stellar performance of Anthony Perkins at center as Norman and Mother made an icon of both characters. With a genuine but shy smile and an open and inviting nature, Norman Bates is the last person we would suspect of being a killer at heart. Even though the score of Bernard Herrmann has also become iconic, it still sounds fresh and frightening with each viewing. Every choice made in this film, whether production or performance, feels at once startling and alive. Watch it again. Right now.

“Dirty night…”

What you’ll find in this episode: Ericca’s trash talk about Pat Hitchcock and Cole’s about Dennis Franz, the film’s reaction to and rejection of societal norms, the correct pronunciation of Ar-bo-gast, and why Psycho remains so watchable.

– Ericca

Links and Recommendations:
Check out Psycho on IMDB.
Ericca’s further viewing pick of Deep End.
Cole’s further viewing pick of Glen or Glenda.
Details on the 1960 Academy Awards; note that The Virgin Spring won best foreign language film that year!
Tony Perkins’ hit song Moonlight Swim.
Several fascinating diversions on a brief history of mental illness and care, one patient’s journey through institutions in the 1960s, and how the shift to letting patients out of institutions came about.

GTGM Episode 30: Top Gun (1986) with Grace DiMarco

Jamie (Lil Hippie) Lorello and Doug (DP) McCambridge are the best pilots the Air Force/Navy has ever seen and they are on the fast track to Top Gun when Jamie is found out to be a woman. She’s kicked out of the military and since Doug is just the guy who sits in the back, their Top Gun ticket gets passed along to Cougar and Merlin…who will certainly excel at the next level!

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