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About mrbs

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  1. Now that the AFI list is complete, and the first mini-series is wrapping up, I wonder if it would be fun if Paul and Amy were able to make their own min-lists lists with 2 or 3 entries. The big selling point is that this would open them up to discuss any movie they love for any reason, even if it wouldn't have any chance on a top-100 of all time, when you consider it across all the different dimensions. The mini-lists could be fairly broad (Coming of age movies) or ultra-specific (consciousness time loop movies). They could focus on an aspect of the movie (best portrayal of going insane), or how they effect the viewer (the movie that most made me re-examine a deeply held belief). They could even focus on how they movies are consumed (best movie to see in a packed theater, or best movie to have on with friends half paying attention to and goofing on). The one limitation I'd put is that the category needs to be open, meaning a future movie could aspire to take the top spot. That means nothing specific to a person, you wouldn't have the best of director X or actor Y. You couldn't do 'Best film from the 60s', but you COULD do 'Best film set in the 60s'. One real fun aspect of this would be that the debate about what gets the top spot on each list would be more focused. Instead of considering historic import, or influence on latter films, or box office success, the title of the list tells you EXACTLY what you should be judging the film on. You'd get to hash out what you think the 'Best movie to watch wrapped up in a blanket on a rainy night' is, without getting caught up on any of the historic details not contained within the experience of you watching the movie, right now. Paul and Amy have kind of circled around this idea with how they've added their own rules about limiting each director to one entry on a big, monolithic list. But that's kind of a bummer for directors that have a wider range of films. They debate which "flavor" should be represented in that director's singular spot on the big list… but the better option is to just give each flavor its own mini-list, freeing them to talk about the movies they think are most interesting. So Paul and Amy would just make a big list of movies they'd love to talk about and examine, and then make up superlatives for each. "Best movie where cars get air", "Best movie to watch after a break up", "Most absolute ridiculous stunt". They share the superlatives, see where the other person can dream up a counter-example that fits the category, and then they do those two movies in back to back episodes. Maybe they get feedback from the audience, to nominate a third movie (maybe that one's a bit delayed to allow for recording). But after a few episodes, they'd have the official Unspooled mini-list for "Movie with the best training montage". Maybe a couple years down the line, a new challenger comes for the top spot, and they review that movie. Might be a great way to bring in an occasional guest, if they feel strongly about a published mini-list not having the correct entry at the top spot.
  2. mrbs

    Escape Plan (2013)

    I was just traveling overseas, and came across this when I was flipping through the channels. At first, it seemed like a terrible 80s movie. Then, I saw a bunch of big name actors were involved… and they were all about as old as they are now. BUT, the movie was so bad I was convinced that it must have been some movie knockoff, like Japanese commercials, where celebs get paid a ton to look a bit silly, knowing it will never make it to the American audience. But no, this is a legitimately bonkers movie. These people are not in on the joke, like Sharknado. This isn't some indie production or low budget film; this is a star-studded affair: Arnold, Sly, Vinnie Jones, Sam Neill, 50 cent, Jim Caviezel. And, from what I saw… none of it makes any sense. It's like if you gave a 10 year old a spec script of prison break and a bump of cocaine and just dictated his re-telling… but then had Sly and Arnie punch it up to make both their characters genius macguyver psychologist ninjas. This is already the perfect HDTGM movie… but there's more. According to IMDB, they're making a sequel in 2018. Paul, June, Jason: Please get on this!
  3. mrbs


    Agreed. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't get the most out of that aspect of the show. I mean, it is the central conceit. And engendering more and better discussion seems like a good thing in general, and a good thing to strengthen the community around the podcast.
  4. mrbs


    Those that read it might, but that's a small, small subset of the podcast audience (I have to believe). But the added benefit would be hearing Amy's response to the discussion. Maybe she's surprised that so many people got hung up on X, or maybe someone presented an argument that swayed her, or maybe she has a perfect counter to a point that went unchallenged on the boards. Or, at the very least, just reflecting a bit on how the vote actually went. That alone would be a nice improvement.
  5. mrbs


    I realize that would require some timing, but what you point out is another shortcoming. Amy's not even invested in the result, as she's pre-recording one for each possibility. You get 90 minutes of podcast debate, then a week of forum discussion, and then it's all capped off with… a pre-record with buzzwords? It doesn't seem to do the rest of the process justice.
  6. mrbs


    I'd really like to have Amy do more followup for the vote results. Currently, there's a ~30 second bit where the result is shared, with flavor text giving a nod to the film's setting or theme… and that's it. It doesn't need to be as extensive as 'How Did This Get Made' mini-episodes, but I'd love to hear 5-10 minutes of Amy relating and responding to some of the discussion. Brining up some common themes, any breaklines, fresh arguments, or counter arguments to the episode. Reading the response on the forum are a big part of experiencing the canon, and I think Amy giving a distilled version instead of just reporting the result on the podcast would spread the love. Added bonus: It might have a knock-on effect of having more listeners come to the forum, and participate in the discussion, and give us a larger voting population.
  7. I've always thought Return of the King was a disappointment. There are good parts, to be sure, but many of the major storylines fell apart, and it was left needing to close out all the storylines, adding a lot of bloat. The biggest mark against is the army of the dead… on its own that was a "jump the shark" moment for me. And it just reinforced how the fellowship had, at this time, become larger than the films that contained them. They were superheroes that were untouchable, never in danger, and knowing they were never in danger because they're the stars. The Gondor storyline seemed like a waste of time, and everything between Aragon and (the vision of) Arwen was a snore.
  8. mrbs

    Episode 98 - Ghostbusters

    Quick aside: I'm a bit bummed that nobody's brought up The Man Who Knew Too Little as a good Murray movie. It's a criminaly underrated showcase. I think I'd put it at the top of the list, above Stripes, Scrooged, Groundhog Day, and Ghostbusters, when rating by Bill Murray quality.
  9. mrbs

    Episode 98 - Ghostbusters

    It's great to have Amy back, and I think Paul is a perfect compliment to her, I really hope he can come back on a regular basis. I also think this would be a great time for Amy to make a slight pivot by giving the canon a bit stricter definition. I think the conceit of the show suffered for how ambiguous the term is, and that was with two consistent hosts. With a guest host AND a super-nebulous definition of the requirements, there isn't enough structure for people to shape their arguments around in a satisfying or convincing way. I'd suggest the definition of the canon should be "The best ______ movie", where the blank can be anything, but it has to be explicitly defined by the guest. So Paul could say ghostbusters is the best 80s comedy, or the best Bill Murray vehicle, or the best ensemble crime fighting movie… and then Amy could bring up counter examples and really dig into particular aspects. Anyway… on to Ghostbusters. I was worried when I saw the title that this was too much of a sure thing, that the debate would be perfunctory, but Amy made some great points. And I loved Paul's balance of refuting and calling out Amy's position, while ensuring it was explored and presented. Awesome dynamic throughout the episode. In the end, I believe this is probably best comedy of the decade. It's definitely of the time, and while I usually argue that the canon shouldn't grade on a curve when it comes to when a movie was made, I give a bit of lenience for comedies. Thumbs up from me, although Amy really made me think through it.
  10. mrbs

    Letterboxd Links

    A lot of people were sharing letterboxd links, buried deep in the other thread. Quick aggregation: Number 1 Cheeba Hawk mrbs Felipe Sobreiro 24 Hour Party Pizza Llewellyn_Wells FilmFanMan Galactiac sycasey bri-witched NotTheWhosTommy Sievers samsanchez Robert Schley HoldenMartinson MadScientist There's also a list of all films discussed on The Canon.
  11. mrbs

    Future of the Show?

    Just in case nobody saw it, there's a letterboxd list of all The Canon movies (discussed, not approved… but let's face it, that's pretty much the same thing).
  12. mrbs

    Future of the Show?

    I've just been lurking on the forums since they switched over, but I need some more people on letterboxd to follow. I'm http://letterboxd.com/mrbs/
  13. mrbs

    Episode 79: THE USUAL SUSPECTS

    Definitely all-time Canon based on intrinsic quality and not just dubious "historical importance". I love that Devin commented on the Oswald line… it's such a perfect line that it will still pop up in my head, I just wish he didn't say 'fag' so I could actually share the line.
  14. Interesting breakdown of scripted lines by gender of the actor. http://polygraph.cool/films/index.html Surprising to see some of these numbers. Thinking about it more, I'd be really interested to see what it would look like if they broke down the lines by the character's relationship to the main character. e.g. Lines from a character's boss are 98% male. Or lines from a friend are 84% male.
  15. Definitely after the episode. To me the bigger question is if it's worth voting on a particular episode at all. The majority of the movies picked are critical darlings and film school staples for decades and both hosts agree it should be in the canon… no reason to log in to "vote" for that.