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Episode 210 - The Secret (w/ Topher Grace, Joel Kim Booster)

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Even without any prior knowledge of the film, I could tell it was going to be super gross when in the first ten minutes the adjective “spongy” was used to describe the softness of a person’s lips three times.

Also, for the record, the family prepares dinner two separate times in the first seven minutes of the movie - which feels...excessive. Then again, I suppose it draws the audience’s eyes to their spongy lips, so what do I know?

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Here’s something I simply could not fathom. Hannah keeps insisting that Sam is going to come back so they both decide that the best course of action, to ensure and protect their daughter’s future academic success, is to just keep on keeping on. And, okay, sure, I can kind of get that, but why does she have to physically go to school? Why not just home school? Why does the onus of re-attending High School have to fall on Hannah’s shoulders? She clearly doesn’t want to. At least, not at first. They’re both intelligent, educated adults. Between the two of them, without the distractions and drama of High School, they could probably knock out her course work in a weekend, and then spend the rest of their time trying to figure out just what the heck is going on. Having her go to High School just creates needless obstacles and undue stress. 

On a related note, while I get keeping her grades up (just in case), I’m not really sure how getting underage drunk and doing drugs is doing her daughter’s body and brain any favors. It’s like borrowing a friend’s car and then shitting in the backseat. 

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2 hours ago, Cameron H. said:

Between the two of them, without the distractions and drama of High School, they could probably knock out her course work in a weekend, and then spend the rest of their time trying to figure out just what the heck is going on. 

I think more likely they would have used that free time to go to the bone zone

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On ‎4‎/‎13‎/‎2019 at 2:56 AM, Doctor Suessicide said:

Several people have brought up the question of the handwriting at the end. I think this movie is pulling a brilliant Minority Report style ambiguous ending: if you want the handwriting to show that the daughter has gained a new respect for her deceased mother, then you can walk away without thinking about it any further. Stop reading if that sounds nice to you.

However, if you want to think about the real consequences of a grown woman who has been trapped in her dead daughter's body, keep reading. So you have just been busted doing drugs by your husband/dad who is having his own emotional breakdown over the question of what is going to happen to his family. You've just had a vision in which you see your own dead body fading out of existence. You now realize there is no going back. You finally understand your daughter's life, and you finally understand that she is gone. What do you do?

Do you try to convince your husband to face this fact? He has rejected your attempts to remain a wife, and he has rejected your attempts to find a new life for yourself with this new body. He'll only accept one way out: the daughter's return. Conveniently, this is an outcome in which he:

  1. Accepts your life choices
  2. Doesn't try to bang you
  3. Supports you financially while you restart your life

Trying to be honest with him would just result in a bizarre divorce, and he would probably try to have you committed to an institution. 

So, you convince your hus-dad that the daughter is back. You don't get hit by  car, or struck by lightning, or anything. You just wake up one morning and pretend to faint dramatically. He wants to believe you, anyway.

And then you carry on with your new life. It's a little tricky that you can't help but use your old-style handwriting, but you pass it off as an homage to your late mother. But at least you can bang that hot photography teacher on the regs.

That's exactly how the Japanese novel ended.

The accident happens when the daughter is 11. The wife possesses her body for years into her teenage years. The daughter's personality begins to partially emerge and grows stronger until she is fully conscious and in control again. The father accepts this and raises her as his daughter again. On her wedding day, he breaks down as he suspects that his daughter never came back and his wife just gave up being her original self and decided to be the daughter.

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I'm so glad Topher Grace brought up the "scientific research" google search. But then, after Duchovny visits the "scientist" he comes back, and the daughter is sitting on the floor crying "Seven years! I'm going to be like this for seven years?!" And that is never brought up again. 

 

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On 4/12/2019 at 8:27 PM, noodlenoods said:

Did anyone else make the mistake of watching The Secret (2006), the shitty self-help movie based on the shitty self-help book of the same name? What a horrible way to waste an hour and 31 minutes and now I have to watch the real movie. 

There seems to be a lot of confusion. Check out this Rotten Tomatoes page:

https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1175785_secret

The movie poster looks right. The listed cast includes David Duchovny, Lili Taylor, etc. Okay. MPAA rating, director, writer; check, check, check. But then, genre: documentary? Synopsis: Interviews with leading authors, philosophers, scientists, with an in-depth discussion of the Law of Attraction. The audience is shown how they can learn and use 'The Secret' in their everyday lives? Whoops.

The best part has to be the 70 pages of audience reviews for a very divisive self-help documentary. I am getting a kick though out of pretending that some of the less specific reviews are actually for our Duchovny flick. Matthew M gave it one star and says "Complete non scientific non sense".  Tahirih N notes that it's "Kind of dramatic at times but a great message!". According to Mihir D it's "One and a half hours of repetitive crap. Argh!", but Michelle H contends it's "A must see. It can change your life if you see it with an open mind." Can't argue with that.

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Topher had the same critique of Big on this episode that RedLetterMedia had on Half in the Bag: Shazam, which debuted earlier in the week. 

Like RLM, Topher has also spent way too much time thinking about the Star Wars Prequels.

In conclusion:

Is Topher Mr. Plinkett's heretofore unknown 3rd son?

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I agree with the gang about how all their arguments and huge emotional moments seemed to happen in public. My favorite example of this was near the end of the movie when Duchovny is coming to terms with the idea that he’s going to lose his wife for a second time and he’s straight up ugly crying at work while looking at photographs of the two of them. Then, slowly, the camera pans over his shoulder and reveals a dude sitting in the optometry chair waiting patiently for his optometrist to get his shit together and examine his eyes. I can’t even imagine what must be going through that guy’s head, but I’d love to read his Yelp review:

Arrived on time for appointment and was promptly led to Dr Duchovny’s unusually dim office to begin the exam. He sat me down, complimented me on my “beautiful eyes” - which seemed mildly inappropriate - and then turned his back to me for, like, five minutes while he stood crying over some blurry photos of nonsense. He kept mumbling something about his “daughter-wife?” I don’t know. I’m sure that’s not what he was actually saying, because that’s crazy, but it was strange and really uncomfortable. Like, what do you even do in that situation??? He just stood there sobbing and sniffling loudly. I know he’s a doctor and all, and I should trust him, but he was clearly emotionally unstable. I mean, I was there for cataract surgery for Christ’s sake!!! There was no way I was about let this crazy person anywhere near my eyes! 

Anyway, eventually he told me he wasn’t feeling very well and asked me to leave, which, at that point, I was more than happy to do.

One Star - Do Not Recommend!

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21 hours ago, Cameron H. said:

Here’s something I simply could not fathom. Hannah keeps insisting that Sam is going to come back so they both decide that the best course of action, to ensure and protect their daughter’s future academic success, is to just keep on keeping on. And, okay, sure, I can kind of get that, but why does she have to physically go to school? Why not just home school? Why does the onus of re-attending High School have to fall on Hannah’s shoulders? She clearly doesn’t want to. At least, not at first. They’re both intelligent, educated adults. Between the two of them, without the distractions and drama of High School, they could probably knock out her course work in a weekend, and then spend the rest of their time trying to figure out just what the heck is going on. Having her go to High School just creates needless obstacles and undue stress. 

On a related note, while I get keeping her grades up (just in case), I’m not really sure how getting underage drunk and doing drugs is doing her daughter’s body and brain any favors. It’s like borrowing a friend’s car and then shitting in the backseat. 

Even after she goes back to school, why not tell them she has amnesia from the accident?  I thought it would’ve been a good cover for any “odd” behavior.

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5 minutes ago, tomspanks said:

Even after she goes back to school, why not tell them she has amnesia from the accident?  I thought it would’ve been a good cover for any “odd” behavior.

Speaking of which, I found it hilarious when she couldn’t recognize the school guidance counselor and it was treated as being super bizarre. I swear, you could have held a gun to my head in High School and I would never in a million years been able to tell you who my guidance counselor was. 

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On 4/15/2019 at 8:59 AM, Cameron H. said:

Sorry to be the one to point this out, but I think you’re math’s off. Twenty years from when the film was released would have put that concert in 1987 or '88. A quick gander at the Cure's discography shows that their album Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me came out in ‘87 and featured the hit song “Just Like Heaven” - which I would argue is The Cure just getting to their commercial height. (Disintegration w/ hits “Pictures of You” and  “Lovesong” [their highest charting single] was released in ‘89 and Wish, w/ “Friday I’m in Love,was released in ‘92.)

So, it checks out is what I’m saying. Everything checks out. The whole damn movie checks out. There are no holes.

You're right. I forgot that this was an older movie, I was thinking it was 2017 for some reason. 

Once again I bow to the powers of the other Cameron.

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2 hours ago, tomspanks said:

Even after she goes back to school, why not tell them she has amnesia from the accident?  I thought it would’ve been a good cover for any “odd” behavior.

This is the thing I found most puzzling about the movie. She was in a near fatal car crash and did "die" but all hear friends and school staff treat it as if she wasn't in the hospital or wasn't even close to dying but rather "on your mom died." At the same time she died but yet her injuries aren't so severe that she couldn't just jump out of her hospital bed upon realizing the truth.

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On 4/14/2019 at 8:12 PM, Cameron H. said:

Here’s something I simply could not fathom. Hannah keeps insisting that Sam is going to come back so they both decide that the best course of action, to ensure and protect their daughter’s future academic success, is to just keep on keeping on. And, okay, sure, I can kind of get that, but why does she have to physically go to school? Why not just home school? Why does the onus of re-attending High School have to fall on Hannah’s shoulders? She clearly doesn’t want to. At least, not at first. They’re both intelligent, educated adults. Between the two of them, without the distractions and drama of High School, they could probably knock out her course work in a weekend, and then spend the rest of their time trying to figure out just what the heck is going on. Having her go to High School just creates needless obstacles and undue stress. 

On a related note, while I get keeping her grades up (just in case), I’m not really sure how getting underage drunk and doing drugs is doing her daughter’s body and brain any favors. It’s like borrowing a friend’s car and then shitting in the backseat. 

I don't think Duchovny was going to give up his lucrative optometry/matchmaking business to teach a person he knew was an adult mentally. Why would dropping out of high school further her academic success? The daughter was presumably on her way to honors level at school. The C giving teacher said she wasn't going to just let her slide by because other teachers were letting her. Then when she made better grades the teacher gave her the 'see I told you' look.

12 hours ago, WatchOutForSnakes said:

I'm so glad Topher Grace brought up the "scientific research" google search. But then, after Duchovny visits the "scientist" he comes back, and the daughter is sitting on the floor crying "Seven years! I'm going to be like this for seven years?!" And that is never brought up again. 

 

She was upset that the African example lasted seven years. The 'scientist' said he didn't know if that was always the case because his scientific research only found one other similar case.

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11 hours ago, Cam Bert said:

You're right. I forgot that this was an older movie, I was thinking it was 2017 for some reason. 

Once again I bow to the powers of the other Cameron.

Hey, Cam, it’s okay...

giphy.gif

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10 hours ago, Cam Bert said:

This is the thing I found most puzzling about the movie. She was in a near fatal car crash and did "die" but all hear friends and school staff treat it as if she wasn't in the hospital or wasn't even close to dying but rather "on your mom died." At the same time she died but yet her injuries aren't so severe that she couldn't just jump out of her hospital bed upon realizing the truth.

A bizarre moment for me was at the end when Hannah-as-Sam is signing her friend’s yearbook and when the subject of her handwriting comes up her friend says something like, “I really miss your mother,” and I was just thinking, “You DO???”

This is one of the “friends” who was complicit in the whole, “Let’s get high at your mother’s wake” plan. At no point did I ever feel like any of her friend’s gave a single shit about her mother - at all. When they show up on their doorstep at the beginning, Hannah doesn’t even seem to know who they are. But apparently, unbeknownst to us, this one teenage girl had a real surrogate mother/daughter thing going on with Hannah. Something never brought up until the very last scene just so Hannah-Sam can tell us with a wink that she’s permanently hijacked her daughter’s body.

#Momoftheyear

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Here are my random thoughts from my notes:

  • As a librarian, I can confidently tell you that there are people out there that do Google searches that are as bad as the "scientific research" search that Duchovney did. I am constantly amazed at what kind of bad search terms people use.
  • IMDB says that this movie takes place in Williamstown, MA, although I think they use a fictitious town name in the movie. Williamstown is a really small town in western MA. Their high school only has about 550 students total but the school depicted in the movie looked much, much bigger than that.  And how much time is supposed to have passed in this movie? It's never winter and yet, winter in Western MA goes on for a good chunk of the school year.
  • Finally, the horny guidance counselor shows up for her eye appointment and Duchovney seems surprised to see her, like she didn't have a scheduled appointment. I know my eye doctor doesn't take drop in appointments but maybe Duchovney does. That seems typical of him.
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37 minutes ago, Cameron H. said:

A bizarre moment for me was at the end when Hannah-as-Sam is signing her friend’s yearbook and when the subject of her handwriting comes up her friend says something like, “I really miss your mother,” and I was just thinking, “You DO???”

This is one of the “friends” who was complicit in the whole, “Let’s get high at your mother’s wake” plan. At no point did I ever feel like any of her friend’s gave a single shit about her mother - at all. When they show up on their doorstep at the beginning, Hannah doesn’t even seem to know who they are. But apparently, unbeknownst to us, this one teenage girl had a real surrogate mother/daughter thing going on with Hannah. Something never brought up until the very last scene just so Hannah-Sam can tell us with a wink that she’s permanently hijacked her daughter’s body.

#Momoftheyear

Her friends were terrible people. Just terrible. They were so damn insensitive to her mother's death. I have a 16 year old son, they don't act that way.

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8 minutes ago, hotironskillet said:

Her friends were terrible people. Just terrible. They were so damn insensitive to her mother's death. I have a 16 year old son, they don't act that way.

My dad died while in high school and about 3-4 months later (I went through a big haze the semester following and can't keep track of what happened when) I was really depressed and a friend asked what was wrong and I obviously replied, "I'm just really sad about my dad," and she said, "Hasn't it been long enough?" (I now can't even remember the exact quote but I definitely remember thinking "she's right I should shut up about it." IT WAS ONLY 3-4 MONTHS LATER.)

Your son has way better friends lol.

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37 minutes ago, hotironskillet said:

As a librarian, I can confidently tell you that there are people out there that do Google searches that are as bad as the "scientific research" search that Duchovney did. I am constantly amazed at what kind of bad search terms people use.

Please tell us some!

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Listening to this episode, I decided I want a movie that is basically a shared universe of all the bodyswap movies ever made. Jodie Foster and Lindsey Lohan and Fred Savage and Charlie Schlatter and Steve Martin and Lily Tomlin and Rachel McAdams and Rob Schnider and...I could go on and on and on.
 

I want to see the Body Swap survivor support group film.

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3 minutes ago, EvRobert said:

Listening to this episode, I decided I want a movie that is basically a shared universe of all the bodyswap movies ever made. Jodie Foster and Lindsey Lohan and Fred Savage and Charlie Schlatter and Steve Martin and Lily Tomlin and Rachel McAdams and Rob Schnider and...I could go on and on and on.
 

I want to see the Body Swap survivor support group film.

I have to C&O your post real quick because that Freaky Friday is iconic for my generation and it was most definitely Jamie Lee Curtis.

giphy.gif

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1 minute ago, taylorannephoto said:

I have to C&O your post real quick because that Freaky Friday is iconic for my generation and it was most definitely Jamie Lee Curtis.

giphy.gif

Jodie Foster was in the Lindsey Lohan role in the 70s Barbara Harris was in the Jamie Lee Curtis role

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