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Knock-Out Suggestions

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Voting out Chi-Raq will not make those other movies magically appear in The Canon! I'm just not a fan of the "there are better/more important alternatives, so forget about this one" argument (essentially what guest Michael Lerman was saying in defense of Antichrist, if I'm remembering my episodes). I think it's great late-period Lee. But whatever, agree to disagree. Just know if it gets voted out I'll have a stern (yet lyrical) rhyming monologue of disappointment ready to go.

Chi-Raq is straight up not a great Spike Lee film. It bothers me that it's in because that there are so many better ones to talk about. I also think it was way too soon for that film to even be considered; they need to breathe a little bit within the culture.

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Chi-Raq is straight up not a great Spike Lee film. It bothers me that it's in because that there are so many better ones to talk about. I also think it was way too soon for that film to even be considered; they need to breathe a little bit within the culture.

 

That's what "The Best of 20XX" is all about. It's a kind of a gimmick pick, from a knowingly very limited sample set and with full knowledge that it's all speculation that the film will even age well. At least that's what was said during their first one, when they did Grand Budapest vs Guardians of the Galaxy. Which I still feel the voters made the right choice on, given that, for all the buzz Guardians got, I think Deadpool has already stolen its fire, and will end up being the more influential film.

 

Unless the new Howard the Duck ends up topping even that. :P

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That's what "The Best of 20XX" is all about. It's a kind of a gimmick pick, from a knowingly very limited sample set and with full knowledge that it's all speculation that the film will even age well. At least that's what was said during their first one, when they did Grand Budapest vs Guardians of the Galaxy. Which I still feel the voters made the right choice on, given that, for all the buzz Guardians got, I think Deadpool has already stolen its fire, and will end up being the more influential film.

 

Unless the new Howard the Duck ends up topping even that. :P

 

I'm not so sure about Deadpool being the better movie. I was looking forward to it, but then felt like I'd just seen Kevin Smith's take on a Wolverine movie (not a compliment). They would have been better off lifting from Lord and Miller's 21 Jump Street films. Plus it fell into typical origin story schlock. We're well into the second decade of origin films, and any comic book movie that wants to move the genre forward should be avoiding that garbage.

 

I love that it did so well, but I really hope the sequel is a big improvement.

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I just did a quick tabulation based on people's comments and here are the leaders so far (after eliminating anything with only one or two mentions):

 

Working Girl - 7

Re-Animator - 6

Pennies From Heaven - 5

Cannibal Holocaust - 4

Chi-raq - 3 (or 4, depending on how you interpret comments)

Two-Lane Blacktop - 3

 

Hope that helps!

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I'd probably go with:

Pennies From Heaven

Cannibal Holocaust

The Grand Budapest Hotel (honestly, too soon)

Annie Hall (that's right, I said it)

Boyz n the Hood (still laughing at Eazy E calling it an "after shool special")

 

Personally, I do not want an indulgence "vs.". I like when A&D disagree, but an indulgence "vs." argument would probably be too mean and personal and not fun.

 

That said, if Re-Animator goes and that god-awful Pennies stays...then this meaningless list of films will be rendered meaningless. Maybe if one goes then both should go? I mean a lot of people in the thread said they only voted for Pennies because "Devin's indulgence got in so...". Either that, or make the (yearly?) indulgence picks immune? I don't know, I just want to keep the podcast fun.

 

I forgot about Boyz n the Hood. I'd want to see that go too.

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I just did a quick tabulation based on people's comments and here are the leaders so far (after eliminating anything with only one or two mentions):

 

Working Girl - 7

Re-Animator - 6

Pennies From Heaven - 5

Cannibal Holocaust - 4

Chi-raq - 3 (or 4, depending on how you interpret comments)

Two-Lane Blacktop - 3

 

Hope that helps!

I'll give another vote for the top three!

 

Expanding on my earlier post mentioning how easy it is for horror to get into the Canon: 12 horror movies have been discussed on the show so far and 9 have got in. The three that didn't (Aliens, Let Me In, The Fly) only missed out because they were in Vs. episodes against other horror movies -- funnily enough the action oriented Aliens lost to the more horror leaning Alien.

Yeah that's a fascinating stat- Devin forms the narrative of Horror films being the down-trodden genre (which it certainly is amongst certain mainstream groups) but this particular voting base will most likely agree with the inclusion of the films!

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The number of people mentioning Re-Animator makes me sad. :(

I voted yes on Re-Animator, but if I have to make a tribute in the name of the canon, I'm okay ejecting it.

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I'm not so sure about Deadpool being the better movie. I was looking forward to it, but then felt like I'd just seen Kevin Smith's take on a Wolverine movie (not a compliment). They would have been better off lifting from Lord and Miller's 21 Jump Street films. Plus it fell into typical origin story schlock. We're well into the second decade of origin films, and any comic book movie that wants to move the genre forward should be avoiding that garbage.

 

I love that it did so well, but I really hope the sequel is a big improvement.

 

I didn't mean to say that Deadpool was the better movie. That's highly debateable.

 

...For the record, I enjoyed Deadpool more. Guardians wasn't even the best movie I saw that DAY. Liked Starlord, thought Rocket was OK, everything else sucked.

 

But Deadpool is very, very likely to restore some much-lost and much-missed lustre of the R-rated mainstream flick. Produced on a very modest budget, it absolutely cleaned up, and stunned everybody. Also, it's the only recent non-Marvel/Disney superhero film to break financial expectations (Suicide Squad is close to its goal, but not at all close to Deadpool in profitability), and Deadpool was far, far more positively-received (EDIT: When compared with Suicide Squad).

 

Guardians, OTOH, was just another sign that Marvel/Disney is basically invincible, and it ended up doing just as well, on a far, far bigger budget. If future comic book/superhero films come along, built on irreverence, I still think they're gonna look at Deadpool more. It just produced the bigger shock, with the harder rating, probably with audiences and executives/investors alike.

 

As for the 21 Jump Street bit, I haven't seen those films. But I did hear one of the more popular jokes from it was a fourth-wall breaking bit of in-universe genre-savviness. So....Deadpool.

 

And Guardians was still an origin story, of sorts. Of a team, not so much of how [creature/object] [verb]ed [hero] and started [him/her/probablyhim] down a tortured path of [self-discovery/angst/adventure/defiance/moreangst] before realizing that [his/her/probablyhis] true [calling/strength] lay in [him/her/probablyhimself/friendship] all along. Deadpool played so...differently with so much, I didn't mind the occasional lapse into formula (especially because, half the time, it fully called itself out on its formulaicness.)

 

We'll see. But to piggyback on other recent comments in other recent threads, I suspect Deadpool will be the Shrek of comic book movies. A blueprint for easy satirical irreverence. They'll run it into the ground, same as anything else, but Guardians was, in comparison, only a half-step in that direction. A bunch of silly amateur superheroes, gliding by on brand loyalty and good vibes. Deadpool was a real shocker. Can you imagine X-Men: Apocalypse WITHOUT Deadpool? Where would Fox be?

 

Yeah that's a fascinating stat- Devin forms the narrative of Horror films being the down-trodden genre (which it certainly is amongst certain mainstream groups) but this particular voting base will most likely agree with the inclusion of the films!

 

That's almost sickening. 9 chances for a horror film to go in, and it's gotten in all 9 times (EDIT: OK, three were gimmes because versus). So much for an "under-appreciated" "fringe" genre.

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I was very infrequent with the podcast at first and wasn't a regular listener until soon after the Rollins episode for Apocalypse now. Since Oldboy I haven't missed an episode, but I've been scattershot catching up on older episodes. REALLY curious to see both "Working Girl" and "Chi-raq" after going through this thread. I wonder if I'll join the ouster ranks?

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I don't see why we need to tabulate percentages and determine whether horror has overstepped its genre bounds. The Canon hasn't exactly gotten into the deep cuts of horror, yet, mostly been slam-dunk 'duh's. I don't think we need to shave off the horror simply because this podcast happens to be hosted in part by a horror buff who wants to give plenty of them a chance. Guarantee if this thing was hosted by a couple of Film Twitter jerks they might have just let Nosferatu in by now, at best.

Now, if The Ring ever gets in, then we can talk about a low bar. I guess there's an argument to be had with Re-Animator, maybe, but then, Devin and Amy have always been open that they would lord their power over The Canon at all times, and do as they please to manipulate it, so calling in the fanboy cavalry for what was openly an indulgence pick (which I happen to agree belongs in The Canon), eh? All is fair, yknow. I wanna see some hard data that all those sudden sign-ons for Re-Animator ended up dead-weather Canon listeners, anyway, if a good many stuck around for other votes then I figure there's no foul. I suspect the indulgence picks will be off-limits, anyway. But other than that, I don't see what there is to complain about, the Canon listenership chose for every single damn one of those horror movies, and they chose "yes". I wouldn't want a Canon without a healthy dose of the rough stuff, and if this Canon has a unifying "theme" it's the co-mingling of low and high cinema, arthouse and genre, breaking the demarcations and recognizing what is simply good, essential film, with neither pretension nor pandering. That's the Canon I envision.

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First Blood went up against Rocky, which is a travesty because they're both very strong films. First Blood is every bit as important as The Deer Hunter, maybe even more relevant today -- I think the John Rambo of that film is more tragic and relatable now in the wake of the massive US deployment in the Middle East, as well as Columbine and the media fascination with shooters and domestic terrorists.

 

I have recently watched Rocky and First Blood back-to-back. One of them is a compelling character-driven drama, a perfectly-directed and edited piece, with a sharp socio-political message; the other is Rocky.

 

No offence to either the Amy/Devin or anyone who voted for Rocky, but First Blood is by far the superior film, goofy ending and all. As a result, I would like to see it considered for a second vote, as we had in episode 50. As to a possible de-canonization, would it be worth it? I doubt it.

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I don't see why we need to tabulate percentages and determine whether horror has overstepped its genre bounds. The Canon hasn't exactly gotten into the deep cuts of horror, yet, mostly been slam-dunk 'duh's. I don't think we need to shave off the horror simply because this podcast happens to be hosted in part by a horror buff who wants to give plenty of them a chance. Guarantee if this thing was hosted by a couple of Film Twitter jerks they might have just let Nosferatu in by now, at best.

Now, if The Ring ever gets in, then we can talk about a low bar. I guess there's an argument to be had with Re-Animator, maybe, but then, Devin and Amy have always been open that they would lord their power over The Canon at all times, and do as they please to manipulate it, so calling in the fanboy cavalry for what was openly an indulgence pick (which I happen to agree belongs in The Canon), eh? All is fair, yknow. I wanna see some hard data that all those sudden sign-ons for Re-Animator ended up dead-weather Canon listeners, anyway, if a good many stuck around for other votes then I figure there's no foul. I suspect the indulgence picks will be off-limits, anyway. But other than that, I don't see what there is to complain about, the Canon listenership chose for every single damn one of those horror movies, and they chose "yes". I wouldn't want a Canon without a healthy dose of the rough stuff, and if this Canon has a unifying "theme" it's the co-mingling of low and high cinema, arthouse and genre, breaking the demarcations and recognizing what is simply good, essential film, with neither pretension nor pandering. That's the Canon I envision.

 

I think most people agree with a lot of that, but don't necessarily agree that everything in the canon is good or essential. It's a constant discussion about where the bar is and how we define it and I think having a knock-out episode is a great way to stoke the fire.

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I think most people agree with a lot of that, but don't necessarily agree that everything in the canon is good or essential. It's a constant discussion about where the bar is and how we define it and I think having a knock-out episode is a great way to stoke the fire.

 

 

If I had my way, I would scorch The Usual Suspects from every list of essential films, but I'm gonna stick to my guns and say that I think what's in ought be in. Though if perhaps we were replacing a movie with an old Vs loser, instead, that could be a compromise I could work with. I could even deal with losing Re-Animator (though, yknow, preferably something else) if it meant Road Warrior getting in.

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If I had my way, I would scorch The Usual Suspects from every list of essential films, but I'm gonna stick to my guns and say that I think what's in ought be in. Though if perhaps we were replacing a movie with an old Vs loser, instead, that could be a compromise I could work with. I could even deal with losing Re-Animator (though, yknow, preferably something else) if it meant Road Warrior getting in.

 

We're on the same page there. Love Road Warrior.

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I sort of feel that the best of the year picks should be off limits. If it was too soon to put them in, it's too soon to kick them out

I also think the indulgence picks should be off limits, both because they occurred so recently and because they were so personal. I'm for letting those wins stand fair and square (for another 100 episodes at least).

 

That said, I think it would be good to have a film of which Amy was a stronger advocate against a film of which Devin was a stronger advocate. The ones that make the most sense to me would be Working Girl vs. Cannibal Holocaust, but there are certainly other films that could be looked at.

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If I had my way, I would scorch The Usual Suspects from every list of essential films, but I'm gonna stick to my guns and say that I think what's in ought be in. Though if perhaps we were replacing a movie with an old Vs loser, instead, that could be a compromise I could work with. I could even deal with losing Re-Animator (though, yknow, preferably something else) if it meant Road Warrior getting in.

 

I think this is a really good idea. Yes, part of the fun of vs. episodes is that they present a difficult choice on two movies that may well get in on their own merits, but it has also created a Canon with no real logic to it. The absence of The Road Warrior, The Fly, and Aliens from the Canon presents a strange challenge which Amy articulated in the They Live and Re-Animator episodes -- how can we justify putting in a B+ genre movie when we have already eliminated an A+ picture from the conversation? Also, a Canon with Reservoir Dogs but without Boogie Nights is just insane.

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I think this is a really good idea. Yes, part of the fun of vs. episodes is that they present a difficult choice on two movies that may well get in on their own merits, but it has also created a Canon with no real logic to it. The absence of The Road Warrior, The Fly, and Aliens from the Canon presents a strange challenge which Amy articulated in the They Live and Re-Animator episodes -- how can we justify putting in a B+ genre movie when we have already eliminated an A+ picture from the conversation? Also, a Canon with Reservoir Dogs but without Boogie Nights is just insane.

 

So nice I had to post it twice.

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I'd kick about a fourth of the movies out, but I realize that I don't share the same taste as other people. I try to remember that it's about having an interesting hour-long podcast, not about whether the movies are worthy. :D

 

Animal House is particularly galling for me. Versus episodes need a "neither" option.

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I think this is a really good idea. Yes, part of the fun of vs. episodes is that they present a difficult choice on two movies that may well get in on their own merits, but it has also created a Canon with no real logic to it. The absence of The Road Warrior, The Fly, and Aliens from the Canon presents a strange challenge which Amy articulated in the They Live and Re-Animator episodes -- how can we justify putting in a B+ genre movie when we have already eliminated an A+ picture from the conversation? Also, a Canon with Reservoir Dogs but without Boogie Nights is just insane.

 

If I'm being honest, I think The Canon is at its most interesting when doing versus episodes. Some movies are so obviously going to get in that, while of course the film actually getting into the Canon is something of a gimmicky afterthought next to the actual discussion, it still takes away a bit of the drama. And once something's been eliminated in this fashion, all the more difficult to get it back in, and if it loses again, boom, done. I mean, Empire Strikes Back, never gonna be in the Canon (thanks Elijah Wood). I think that's nifty. Unfortunate, but nifty. But yeah, once a film's been voted in, I don't think it should be expelled unless another worthy film be given a shot at redemption. Whether that film is The Fly, or Road Warrior, something ought find its way in.

It'd be funny if it were Road Warrior, that was sort of Amy's Re-Animator moment, springing Fury Road on the versus at the height of its fervor.

Yknow, speaking of The Fly, a Vincent Price movie needs to be discussed before too long. Heh, a Vincent Price versus would be fun. One of the Castles vs one of the Cormans.

And here's a wild idea, if The Canon went meta and did the original Fly vs The Thing from Another World. Excellent opportunity to discuss the ways sci-fi and horror progressed and comingled and cross-pollinated after the 50s heyday of such films.

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First time post but long time listener:

 

1. Pennies from Heaven

2. Working Girl

3. Boyz in the Hood

 

Haven't seen ChiRaq yet, but it sounds fairly miserable.

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I sort of feel that the best of the year picks should be off limits. If it was too soon to put them in, it's too soon to kick them out

I also think the indulgence picks should be off limits, both because they occurred so recently and because they were so personal. I'm for letting those wins stand fair and square (for another 100 episodes at least).

 

That said, I think it would be good to have a film of which Amy was a stronger advocate against a film of which Devin was a stronger advocate. The ones that make the most sense to me would be Working Girl vs. Cannibal Holocaust, but there are certainly other films that could be looked at.

 

Maybe...but last year was sort of an asterisk year because Fury Road would have probably easily have won if they hadn't put it up in a versus earlier in the year. Plus, Creed vs. Chi-raq...not sure what Devin and Amy were thinking in general. Both movies were fine, but it felt like they were both reaching a little bit with those choices. It's certainly possible, but it's hard to imagine a scenario where people are looking back on 2015 years from now and choosing those movies as defining the cinematic year.

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how can we justify putting in a B+ genre movie when we have already eliminated an A+ picture from the conversation?

 

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.

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