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About LanceHunter

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  • Birthday April 28
  1. LanceHunter

    Episode 157 - Grease vs. Hairspray (w/ Adam Egypt Mortimer)

    Completely agreed. Adam's near-slanderous take on John Waters was just mind-boggling, as was his attempt to turn Grease into some kind of statement on class struggle.
  2. LanceHunter

    Episode 153 - Cry Uncle! (w/ Lloyd Kaufman)

    Gonna watch Cry Uncle! later this week before casting my vote, but I gotta applaud Amy for this episode. That was some A+ quality cat herding keeping Kaufman (almost) on topic.
  3. LanceHunter

    Episode 134 - Love Actually (w/ Michael H. Weber)

    Remember the recent meme going around "what's the the most trivial hill on which you are willing to die?" Love Actually is my hill. I love this movie, and have loved it since I first saw it in the theater. I still watch it every Christmas, my longest Christmas tradition. Love Actually does something you almost never see in a romantic comedy: it interrogates love. The mosaic of plots isn't just about hitting highlights of several romantic comedies all in one film, it is about exploring different aspects of the ways that people love one another. The romantic comedy genre often puts love into cookie-cutter patterns and doesn't let it be as messy and weird as it is in reality. Then Love Actually breaks out of those patterns to reach for something more, only to get attacked by people who think that it must be doing the cookie-cutter patterns wrong. (Most of the critiques of the Andrew Lincoln/Kiera Knightly plot are especially guilty of this. Sometimes love is something that you need to get over, and the end of Lincoln's journey isn't when he confesses everything to Knightly, or even when she kisses him, it's when he walks away and says "enough".) Also, c'mon Michael H. Weber! Why would Billy Mack and his manager kiss? That's obviously not what the film was going for with the love between them. They clearly have a Sam/Frodo love. (Which is also why the manager's apartment would seem like a shrine to Billy Mack. Most likely every one of those posters is of a project that the manager made happen.) Love Actually gets underestimated because it has such a fluffy, holiday-movie facade; I think that it has the most keen insight into humanity of any Christmas movie since It's a Wonderful Life. Fight me.
  4. LanceHunter

    Episode 130 - The Room (w/ Paul Scheer)

    I'm split on The Room. I agree that it is a great bad movie, and that it is the type of bad movie (a work filled with powerful, sincere emotion that misfires in so many weird and wonderful ways) that isn't just funny, but fascinating. But then I look at the works of someone like Neil Breen, and every single one of his films is even more fascinating in the same way. So it can be weird to hear people talk about how The Room is some kind of singular accomplishment in bad films while Breen's works are basically unknown outside of deep bad-film-aficionado circles. It feels a bit like an accident of geography. In an alternate reality where Breen was in Los Angeles and Wiseau was in Las Vegas, I think it's entirely likely we would be listening to an episode about Double Down right now. After thinking this through, I'm gonna vote yes for The Room. It deserves the spot (and I'm not that kind of terrible hipster who begrudges the popular thing for being popular). It is legitimately amazing and influential in a way that is truly Canon-worthy. But I will say that it doesn't deserve to be in the canon for being the "best worst movie". That would be like voting Fast, Cheap, & Out of Control into the Canon because it is the "best documentary". I challenge anyone who enjoys The Room to check out Breen's Pass Thru or Double Down to expand your view of what is out there in the land of bad movies. It's not all Sharknado and Birdemic.
  5. LanceHunter

    Episode 121 - The Matrix (w/ Cameron Esposito)

    That's not fair. House Party > most cinema
  6. LanceHunter

    Episode 121 - The Matrix (w/ Cameron Esposito)

    This is a no-brainer, super-easy yes vote. It's a cultural touchstone, a finely-crafted film with excellent performances that reached for communicating bigger ideas to a mass audience. Hell, this movie helped push the adoption of DVD players because people wanted to see it in higher quality than what VHS could offer. (Like, I didn't know a single person with a DVD player in 2000 who didn't own The Matrix on DVD.) It is definitely a product of the late-90s, but it isn't quite frozen in amber like some other super-late-90s movies *cough*AmericanBeauty*cough*. If you're still on the fence, I have one other argument for why this should be in the Canon: The Matrix is the first, and perhaps only, great cyberpunk movie. After Hollywood spent much of the 90s trying and failing to capture the genre on film, The Matrix finally hit the nail on the head. Things like the heightened noir attitude (that Cameron Esposito mentioned), information and skills being instantly downloadable, the primary setting being basically inside the internet, these were all staples of the genre going way back to the first William Gibson short stories. If all the other reasons for canonization don't ring true, at least consider the fact that there is no other movie to include in the cannon as an example of one of the most important sci-fi movements of the late 20th century; a movement that played a significant role in shaping the technology that now shapes our daily lives.
  7. Yea, somebody definitely missed an edit point there. I'm voting Marie Antoinette, because it feels like the purest distillation of Coppola's obsession with the weirdness of being a rich girl. The bit in the Petit Trianon scene where it shows the servants cleaning the eggs so that Marie and her child can pick them later is probably the moment that sticks out to me most out of anything in Coppola's catalogue. I enjoy Lost In Translation a bit more, but if we're judging which Sophia Coppola movie is the most Sophia Coppola, Marie Antoinette is the clear winner. Also on a brief tangent: Somebody needs to make some kind of "goofus and gallant" style compare-and-contrast between Sophia Coppola and Kevin Smith. Both are writer/directors with highly specific viewpoints and subjects rooted in where they came from (Coppola's rich girls to Smith's schlubby nerds). Both have stuck to telling stories around those subjects. But we're all kinda sick to death of Smith's inability to grow up while Coppola remains intriguing. It can't just be because she's better on a technical level (though she clearly is much better on a technical level).
  8. LanceHunter

    Episode 78: BOYZ N THE HOOD

    Originally voted this in, but then I re-watched the scene where Furious talks about gentrification. I noticed the billboard read "Seoul to Seoul Realty". Fuck that anti-Korean shit. Changed my vote to a No.
  9. LanceHunter

    Episode 71: SLACKER

    Registered for the forums specifically to vote this into the canon, because I am a resident of Austin since the 90s and am thus legally obligated to support this movie whenever possible. Slacker is an amazing document of the city and its culture in that era and most of the people that were here at the time have lived at least a couple of its scenes. When I was working as IT support for the UT Chemistry department one of my co-workers had published several conspiracy theory books. He would occasionally come into our multimedia lab to scan new photos he had gotten from the LBJ library and going on at length about how they proved one thing or another (usually about Jack Ruby). As much as Slacker was documenting Austin, though, it also reshaped Austin. I don't think the city would be the way it is today if not for that movie. Beyond the personal influence Linklater has in our local film industry, Slacker gave a sharper focus to what the city was (or was at least trying to be). People moved here because they liked the mood of Slacker. In turn, when Dell got huge and the dot-com boom shut the door on the "Slacker" era, the movie stood as a signifier of what was being lost. By the way, if you want to see other movies that capture Austin like Slacker did. I have two recommendations. First is the documentary Hell On Wheels, about how modern Roller Derby got started (and the subsequent schism between the flat-track and banked-track leagues). It really captures that early-00s period when the dot-com boom had busted, suddenly everything was too expensive for people to live the Slacker lifestyle, but the tech jobs that raised all the rents had vanished so there was this kind of weird desperate edge to everything. The other one is The Happy Poet, which is basically what would happen if one of the characters in Slacker decided to say "fuck it" and start a business. And since saying "fuck it" and starting a business is basically what the whole city did in the last decade, it really fits. (Even if the movie itself is just another cookie-cutter Sundance-lab-style indie comedy.)