Month: September 2018

Criterion Now – Episode 69 – December 2018 Announcements, Tree of Life, LD Upgrades

Daisuke Beppu and Keith Enright join as what Aaron calls the “Dream Team.” We talk about some big topics, including the December 2018 Announcements and how they round out the year from Criterion, and we look through the titles that came out on Criterion LaserDisc that have not been released yet. We also explore the extended version of Tree of Life, with Daisuke having done a deep dive and comparing the original version with the extended cut. We debate whether it is an entire new movie or extended version, and which version we prefer.

Episode Links

Episode Credits


Music for the show is from Fatboy Roberts’ Geek Remixed project.

Just the Discs – Episode 73 – SMITHEREENS (Criterion)

Brian is joined this episode by Cole Roulain from The Magic Lantern Podcast to discuss Susan Seidelman’s seminal debut feature SMITHEREENS and the excellent package that is the new Criterion Collection Blu-ray.

Film Baby Film:Episode 24 – Around the World in 80 Films Pt. 1 – Cambodia and the Cinema of Rithy Panh

Matt Schlee from Cineccentric.com joins FBF to kick-off his “Around the World in 80 Films” essay series with a discussion about Cambodian film. We focus on the contemporary filmmaker Rithy Panh and his movies RICE PEOPLE, S21, and THE MISSING PICTURE (the latter of which is available streaming on Netflix).

On this episode we also discuss my Facets DVD experience with SATANTANGO, my obsession with Telluride Film Festival, and the time my friends yelled at me after someone shit in the woods during a Weerasethakul film.

(Mike and Stephanie, I am so glad I went to your wedding instead of a stupid film festival. Love you guys!)

Intro & History of Cambodian Cinema: 0:00 – 26:00
Rice People: 26:00-38:00
S21: 38:00-54:00
Missing Picture: 54:00-1:08:00
Outro & Upcoming Episodes: 1:08:00 – End

The Magic Lantern: Episode 086 – 35 Shots of Rum

35 Shots of Rum (Denis, 2008) is a bit of a departure, both for Claire Denis and for me. It is still as incisive and poetic as her other work, but she has replaced the usual turbulent heart of her cinema with a tranquil one. Being a loving homage to Yasujirō Ozu, this makes complete sense. What might not make sense is how this is my favorite Denis film. I, too, usually favor films that are more tumultuous and chaotic, but there is something special about this sedate and loving family drama. I think one of the things that makes it so completely satisfying is that every terrible and shocking thing that we are conditioned to expect never comes to pass. It thoroughly confounds our instincts and our tendency to anticipate darkness. It is honest and true, centering on the steadfast presence of Alex Descas as the anchor of the proceedings. They are frequent collaborators and he was the first person she thought of when considering who had the necessary qualities of paternal devotion and stoic dependability. She couldn’t have made a better choice. With him as our engineer, we navigate the monumental event of a child leaving home. We experience grief and joy in equal measure, arriving safely at our destination, better for the journey. All aboard the Claire Denis train! Have I extended that metaphor far enough? Ok. The point is, I hope you see it and love it as much as I do and then use it as a gentle way into her potent filmography. You won’t be disappointed.

What you’ll find in this episode: trains, rice cookers, the discomfort of devotion, and a pitch for the body-switching prequel to this film.

– Cole

Links and Recommendations:
Check out 35 Shots of Rum on IMDB.
Ericca’s further viewing pick of Stories We Tell.
Cole’s further viewing pick of Late Spring.
An illustrated history of the French rail system.
This person loves their rice cooker as much as I love mine.
A great profile of Claire Denis in The New Yorker.

Criterion Now – Episode 68 – A Conversation with Emma Tillman

Aaron is joined by Emma Elizabeth Tillman who is a writer, filmmaker, photographer, and film art connoisseur, with an MFA from UCLA and some film, video and a lot of photography work under her belt. She is also the spouse of a successful musician, Father John Misty (real name of Josh Tillman), and while our discussion is about her, his art and how they complement each other comes up. She talks about her work, some of the foreign arthouse films that inspired her early on, how she consumes media now in the digital age. 

Episode Links

Episode Credits


Music for the show is from Fatboy Roberts’ Geek Remixed project.

GTGM Episode 87: Maximum Overdrive (1986)

It’s been a crazy eight days and Jamie and Doug just want to relax. They’ve survived 17 truck attacks, an incident with a hair straightener, 3 Casio keyboards, countless lamp attacks and one evil calculator. They just want to take a trip on their boat but find it stolen. They are bummed but soon realize they can take the Smith’s boat as they had been murdered by their washer and dryer.

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Just the Discs – Episode 72 – GUN CRAZY WILD AT HEART (aka On the Run and On the Gun)

Stephanie Crawford is back once more to talk about the film noir gem GUN GRAZY (Warner Archive) as well as geeking out with Brian over their mutual affection for Mr. David Lynch and his film WILD AT HEART (Shout Factory).

Criterion Now – Episode 67 – Oscilloscope, Kino, Flicker Alley, Arbelos

David Blakeslee and Grant Bromley join Aaron and touch on some other labels that don’t get discussed too often. We talk about the Oscilloscope Circle of Trust program, the upcoming releases from Kino and specifically the Pioneers in Women’s Cinema set and how that complements the Flicker Alley Early Women Filmmaker’s Set. We also get into Arbelos near the end of the show. There’s plenty of time for Criterion talk, and we touch on The Tree of Life, Smithereens, Terrence Malick, and other topics.

Episode Links

Episode Credits


Music for the show is from Fatboy Roberts’ Geek Remixed project.

Just the Discs – Episode 71 – It Takes a SUPERGIRL VILLAGE

Brian is joined again by his daughter Raven on this episode. The topics of discussion include the new Warner Archive Blu-rays of SUPERGIRL (1984) and VILLAGE OF THE DAMNED (1960).

The Magic Lantern: Episode 085 – Grey Gardens

When they were first tasked with making a documentary about the Bouvier family and their reminiscences of East Hampton, Albert and David Maysles soon realized that they were dealing with some “staunch” characters in Big Edie and Little Edie Bouvier Beale, and that these women would make much more interesting documentary subjects. Every denizen of East Hampton, even a former first lady, would pale in comparison to the intriguing and beguiling women captured in Grey Gardens (Maysles, Maysles, Hovde, and Meyer, 1975).

I have found over the years with repeated viewings that what delights, inspires, appalls, or repels me about the women and their living conditions, their characters, their actions, or their arguments and reconciliations is very much driven by my age and own experiences. My views have changed over the years, something that Cole echoes as well. I may have started by laughing at a pair of eccentrics, only to find that the years have engendered a true affection and understanding.

I still find that either Big Edie or Little Edie will come up with some observation about themselves or the other, or the world in general, that will strike me deeply. Plus, they are both a hoot to hang around with, albeit for a short period of time! In employing the direct cinema style, the Maysles and their directing, editing, and production team have allowed the world to meet these women on their own terms, in their own words, and in their own inimitable style.

What you’ll find in this episode: insights from Little Edie’s audio supplements and the other adaptations of the work, Jerry and the Marble Faun allusion, and how great it would be to see all of Little Edie’s costumes.

– Ericca

Links and Recommendations:
Check out Grey Gardens on IMDB.
Ericca’s further viewing pick of Cinema Verite.
Cole’s further viewing pick of Salesman.
A glimpse of a very young Little Edie and her diary.
A photo collection of the Beales and Bouviers.