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T.D.

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Everything posted by T.D.

  1. T.D.

    Homework: Juno (2007) vs Whiplash (2014)

    At first glance I thought this was Juno vs. Whip It (both starring Ellen Page). I'll be curious what kind of discussion this actual pairing will elicit. This is certainly the oddest pairing for a versus episode yet.
  2. T.D.

    Episode 98 - Ghostbusters

    I went in expecting to vote yes simply because Ghostbusters has been a pretty major cultural touchstone and it was a huge part of my childhood. But the more I've thought about it, beyond the "cultural impact" argument (which, for me, can be a significant factor in what I consider Canon-worthy), there's just not enough about it that really stands out to me as being especially notable. For me, Ghostbusters falls into a similar category as other "spooky comedies" like Gremlins and An American Werewolf in London. They are movies I like and enjoy and am happy to revisit on occasion, but not good enough on their own to bear the title of a Great Movie To Live on Forever. It's not dissimilar from arguments made against Labyrinth when it came up for vote; I personally love that movie and voted yes, but I can understand where people were coming from. That's pretty much how I feel about Ghostbusters. I do think this era is significant, though, but if I'm going to put a SNL/National Lampoon/Second City movie into the Canon, I'd sooner nominate Caddyshack and/or The Blues Brothers. And as far as Peak Murray goes, I'll take Groundhog Day every time. No for me.
  3. T.D.

    Hey everyone

    Seriously getting me teared-up over here, Amy. Thanks for keeping us posted. It's crazy how much two total strangers can feel like a big part of your life, but you and Devin through both your written criticism and through this podcast have truly had a significant impact on my artistic sensibilities (and, by extension, the ways those sensibilities have led me to evaluating things about my own character and my behavior-- which is one of the great functions of art). From the bottom of my heart, thank you for that. And for whatever it's worth from some random joe schmo, I hope Devin knows how much his words have meant to so many people over the years and how much he is valued. I certainly wish him the best on the hard road ahead.
  4. T.D.

    Future of the Show?

    Uh...
  5. T.D.

    Future of the Show?

    Because after nearly a hundred episodes of this podcast, everyone on this forum has been called a racist, homophobic, misogynist because they voted differently on a movie than Devin did? Sure pal.
  6. T.D.

    Future of the Show?

    This is the podcast forum.
  7. This knockout episode sounds way more interesting to me than, say, Cannibal Holocaust vs. Working Girl. If those two films were paired against each other, my argument is... a big shrug. They are both kinda lame-- I really couldn't give a crap which one goes and which one stays. I have zero passion or interest for either of those movies, and I also have zero interest in listening to ANOTHER episode about both of them. On the other hand, pitting 4 of the great, Canon science-fiction films against one another stokes discussion. The whole point of a Vs. episode is to create interesting contrast and allow you look at the films in a new light. "The Thing" vs. "The Fly" may have been an easy decision, but what if "The Thing" had gone up against "Big Trouble in Little China," and "The Fly" was a solo episode? What if "E.T." had gone up against "Jaws"? Or what if "Boogie Nights" had gone up against "Magnolia"? etc. The Canon would possibly look very different. The rules of The Canon are arbitrary and ever-changing to begin with, and this knockout episode simply provides a new way at looking at four films that have been discussed A LOT in the past. These wild gimmick episodes might be obnoxious if they were done often, but every 50 episodes or so seems fine
  8. T.D.

    Future of the Show?

    I will certainly await more information and statements from the involved parties. I believe in empathy and understanding for victims, and I also believe in forgiveness and rehabilitation for perpetrators. Sometimes it can be difficult reconciling these two things when there is strong emotion involved (on both sides), but I'm troubled by both the silencing of victims ("It's in the past, let it go, it was such-and-such years ago, she's lying" etc.) as well as moral grandstanding against people who committed a crime ("What a hypocrite, once a bad person always a bad person, I knew all along he was a piece of shit, I told you so" etc.). I can't speak to anything more than my general feelings on the treatment of others based on my own experiences. I just hope those who have been sexaully assaulted can continue to feel safe to talk about their experience and heal, and that those who have committed assault can confront the vileness of their actions, do whatever they can to offer amends, and change. I hope The Canon will continue.
  9. T.D.

    Knock Out Poll (Unofficial!)

    At this point, 79 films have been voted into The Canon so far across 95 episodes. I have a hard time believing that there's going to be any sort of noticeable increase in future "Yes" votes as a result of the knockout episode changing people's perception of The Canon's permanency. I don't think the "Second Chances" episode had any effect in that regard either. By the host's own admission, the rules of The Canon have been malleable and arbitrary from the start.
  10. T.D.

    Movies for Moms

    I'd love to hear a "Dirty Dancing" episode. It's crazy how much better it holds up than virtually every other 80's teen movie-- nearly everything else from the era is chock full of racism, homophobia, and misogyny (usually played for laughs) whereas "Dirty Dancing" feels more progressive than most movies made today. Not to say that a lack of timelessness or problematic elements preclude something from being in the Canon (It certainly doesn't; Gunga Din is a favorite), but I do think it just serves to highlight how truly brilliant Linda Gottlieb's profoundly feminist script is, not to mention the direction from Emile Ardolino's who really makes it a female POV movie that never veers into male-gazey schlock (which we've all seen happen a million times in other movies). It's one of my absolute favorites. Great suggestion!
  11. T.D.

    Suggestion: The Matrix

    I can't imagine what arguments exist against including "The Matrix" in the Canon. That movie's impact on the culture is almost incalculable, and on those grounds alone I think it's a slam dunk. Aside from that, I think it's just terrific entertainment, and even nearly 20 years later holds up incredibly well (I haven't thought too deeply about this, but I might say it's the best "hero's journey" movie since the original Star Wars). I'd also 100% go to bat for Speed Racer, which is one of my all-time favorite films and the Wachowski's best. It seems ripe for Canon discussion-- it's an overlooked masterpiece that many people are finally getting around to re-evaluating. Maybe Film Crit Hulk could guest again, as it's one of his favorite movies.
  12. T.D.

    Knock Out Poll (Unofficial!)

    I think the "End of Year" and "Indulgence" movies deserve immunity.
  13. T.D.

    Edgar Wright

    I actually do to! "Shaun" is technically my least favorite of the Cornetto films, but it's really just splitting hairs because all three of them are absolutely fantastic.
  14. T.D.

    Edgar Wright

    Edgar Wright is a legitimate genius. The World's End is my favorite film of his-- It's his most thematically complex and emotionally powerful-- but everything he's done is brilliant, with the Cornetto films in particular standing in absolute masterpiece territory. I'd love to see a Shaun of the Dead vs. Hot Fuzz episode, even though I have no doubt Shaun would win.
  15. T.D.

    Casablanca vs. Gone with the Wind

    Why these two films? Seems like an odd pairing and I'm not sure the compare/contrast format of a versus episode would really benefit the discussion of either film. Despite its many virtues, I have a hard time imagining "Gone with the Wind" having a fighting chance against really any classic film from the era (as others have mentioned above, no doubt "Casablanca" would win in an absolute blow-out). It does loom large in film history, though, so I think it probably deserves its own episode.
  16. T.D.

    Midnight Run

    Interesting choice; if the logistics ever worked out, Devin and Amy should try and get the great TV critic Alan Sepinwall to guest on the episode. "Midnight Run" is his favorite film, and he's written about on several occasions.
  17. T.D.

    Knock-Out Suggestions

    We justify it using the same logic that justifies everything on the show-- the rules/definition/concept of "The Canon" itself is arbitrary and ever-changing, and really just exists as an excuse to talk about great movies. If Devin and Amy were really concerned about only including those A+ movies, then there would be no VS. episodes and the only people allowed to vote would be experienced critics and filmmakers. But since the Sight and Sound poll is already a thing, surely The Canon can function in a different manner.
  18. I realize I'm cheating a bit here because the guests have always traditionally nominated their own film for the Canon, but this idea occurred to me after I got turned on to the podcast "My Favorite Murder" by Devin through Twitter. Kilgariff and Hardstark discuss real murder cases each week, and it's become one of my absolute favorite things to listen to. They are simply terrific hosts and it's an amazing podcast; anybody with an interest in true crime should check it out. So when I considered that Devin also just recently named "Zodiac" the best movie of the 21st century so far, and it all started to come together... I would love to hear this discussion.
  19. T.D.

    Episode #91: LABYRINTH

    Yes! My day has come to defend "Labryinth" as a Canon-worthy film... Here it goes: To start, I think there's a strong argument to be made for the film's Canon-status if only because more people have learned about Bowie through "Labryinth" than probably any other piece of media since its release. I think that will continue to be the case for generations to come. It's the gateway to turning people on the greatness of his music, and while the soundtrack is certainly not among his finest works (although I do like it a lot-- I'm a weirdo who loves 80's Bowie more than most), I think there's significance in recognizing that many, many people who only know a handful of Bowie songs are very likely to include "Magic Dance" next to "Space Oddity" and "Ziggy Stardust." Next, I think the film works wonderfully on several thematic levels that can resonate for people of all ages and walks of life. It's a lovely feminist fable and one of the rare, great coming-of-age films starring a female character (more on that in a second), but I also love what it says about the nature of that broken thing called fandom and our relationship to the fiction we love. I really like that Sarah is a geek; her room filled with fantasy books and games and action figures and dolls and paintings. I can imagine her being into D&D. But when she is thrust into the world of her story (whether this is literal or metaphorical, it makes no difference) she's confronted with not just the reality of the environment, but the reality of the *themes* and ideas that her stories represent ("You have no power over me"). Consider how modern fandoms operate now— here we live in a world where people who allegedly love Batman, Superman, Captain America, or whoever are the very same people threatening violence over trivial, inane reasons; people that supposedly adore and admire characters and stories who espouse virtues that they have zero consideration or understanding of. And in some small way, that's what we have in Sarah; a character who has to learn the value of what being a hero in an adventure story really means, learning to not just love these things for the childish escapist fantasy they offer her, but for the ways they can shape her into a more responsible, emotionally-mature adult. Near the end, she’s even given the literal option of choosing between the worldly representations of her fandom, or rejecting the physical in order to accomplish the greater act of saving her brother (this moment, in particular, was mind-blowing for my 5 year old nephew when we watched "Labyrinth" awhile back; he really grappled with that, fearing for Toby's life and knowing it was the right thing for Sarah to save him, but at the cost of giving up EVERYTHING you own?! It was pretty cool to see that running through his head— This is a GREAT movie for kids, and it still works 30 years later). So in the end, when Sarah has become a woman in her own right, I love that the little coda acknowledges that growing up and no longer being childish doesn't mean you need to reject "kids stuff" entirely— because having fiction, fantasy, and fandom in your life, even as an adult, is a worthwhile, lovely thing... even if it’s only needed "every once in a while.” Now, I’m going to turn it over to my pal fursa saida from BMD; this is lifted from a discussion we had months back about the film, with her take on the film’s coming-of-age thematics: Finally, I’d like to close with a few quotes from one of my favorite critics, Tim Brayton, who reviewed the film earlier this year:
  20. T.D.

    The Sting vs. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

    Don't forget George Roy Hill, who directed both of them. He's a fantastic, underrated and overlooked director. "Butch Cassidy" all the way, for me.
  21. T.D.

    Children of Men

    Wow, good call there. I like when episodes are timed to commemorate or highlight a specific current event as it lends a unique perspective (such as the "what happened to Bryan Singer?" discussion during the Usual Suspects episode), and boy is "Children of Men" particularly timely right now.
  22. T.D.

    Horror Versus

    The Fly/Thing and Let the Right One In episodes have touched upon the idea of remakes and their relationship with their source films, but I think the original Invasion of the Body Snatchers vs. the 1978 remake would make for a great episode (and while I love them both, I would vote for the remake no question).
  23. T.D.

    Being There

    This should be the episode released during election week in November.
  24. T.D.

    Your Indulgence Picks

    Dirty Dancing is 100% Canon, no question; I would LOVE to hear that episode. I imagine it would be a companion piece to the "Saturday Night Fever" ep for how it's often written off by those who haven't seen it as something that it isn't. People tend to just think of Travolta grooving down the street and wearing tight pants but are oblivious to the rape and suicide and exploration of masculinity. Likewise, people tend to think of Swayze in tight pants and "Time Of Your Life" while being oblivious to the botched abortion and the class tension and feminist themes.
  25. T.D.

    Robert Altman

    Lots of great options. Pitting PTA's "Magnolia" against Altman's "Short Cuts" would be interesting as well.
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