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Biopics (Mostly) Suck Podcast

Biopics (Mostly) Suck Podcast

Author: Tol House Productions

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This is a strange little podcast.​

On the surface, we are just another movie podcast that fact checks biopics. Scratch that surface and you find that truth can be stranger than fiction. We are here with a mission to present the truth, appreciate what was left behind and right some wrongs. The film will dictate where the discussion goes. Will it be politics, sports, pop culture, music or history? The possibilities are endless.

At the end of the episode, you will have a greater appreciation for the things you thought you knew. You might find that you fall in love the subject that we discussed. Or, what we share might make you mad. We get it. We feel the same way.

Find us at your favorite place for podcasts, or at www.biopicsmostlysuck.com
26 Episodes
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Aaron Sorkin is back with all his Sorkin-y traits: complete with impassioned monolouges and strange asides. It's not the first movie based on a true story he has done (we talked about "Molly's Game" a couple of episodes ago), but the question is, did he do justice to the true story of the Chicago 7? Let's just say some heroes will rise and some heroes will fall as we talk about the movie. And Aaron Sorkin will be one of them.
Everyone needs a break now and then. After 21 episodes, it is time to rethink our approach to making this podcast. Enjoy what we have made and we will be back soon. Keep in touch on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with the handle @MostlySuck. Be sure to visit our website at www.biopicsmostlysuck.com, and oh, yeah, if you like what we are doing, tell your friends. Take care!
Petey Green was a drunk, and ex-con, a radio and television show host, a social advocate, and a voice of the Washington DC black community. If you don't know about Petey Green, you will be a fan once you listen to this episode. But, what did the filmmakers leave out? It was the very thing that drove Petey Green - and provided his legacy.​ Dawn and John join Rob for a discussion that celebrates Petey Greene, and highlights the important work he did in the Washington DC community which the movie missed.
Molly Bloom ​fell out of pursuing skiing as a profession and fell into running high stakes card games in Los Angeles. The celebrities that would attend were a means to attract players with money to lose. She ran a good game until the wheels fell off of the bus. There was the time she took a stake in the game (this made it illegal). Then there were the drugs. Oh, and getting beat up by a mobster. And then there was the Russian mob. Then she wrote a book about the whole experience, which was followed by her arrest, her trial and her being severely in debt to the U.S. government because they siezed her money and would not give it back unless she shared details about the players in her games.​ Aaron Sorkin wrote and directed this tale of a money and celebrities without a hint of salaciousness and while presenting a heroine who is a celebration of an empowered woman. ​That term is never used in the film, and there is no reason why it has to be used. Why does it have to seem odd that a woman can be in charge of her own destiny, without giving up her body for it and without having a man there to clear the way for her? Rob and Dawn talk about all of that as we tell the true story behind this movie based on a true story.
Aaron Sorkin is back with all his Sorkin-y traits: complete with impassioned monologues and strange asides. It's not the first movie based on a true story he has done (we talked about "Molly's Game" a couple of episodes ago), but the question is, did he do justice to the true story of the Chicago 7? Let's just say some heroes will rise and some heroes will fall as we talk about the movie. And Aaron Sorkin will be one of them.
Alan Turing should be hailed as an international hero. Instead, he was castrated by his government for being gay. He played a key role in decoding messages from the Nazi's during World War II, and by some estimates, shortened that war by two years and saved millions of lives with his genius.​ The question before us for this episode is "Does 'The Imitation Game' give Alan Turing his due?" Does it provide a depiction of the man that is fair? And, let's not go with the "But movies always take liberties." approach. We know they do. But there are times when they leave the worst impression by doing so. For this episode, sharing the true story behind this movie based on a true story is a cause to bring the people in this story their due. Is that a bit of strong coffee for a movie podcast? Why, yes, I think it is.
What would you do for the person you love? Would you give them something you don't want them to have? Would you rob a bank for them? Would you kill for them?​ ​ "Dog Day Afternoon" is about the bank robbery, but it is wrapped up in the Gay Liberation movement that was kicked off just a few years earlier with the Stonewall Riots. It folded in an increased public consciousness about the rights of people in the prison reform system. It blended instant celebrity provided by news media coverage. This movie is a stew of influences and ends up being a mirror we hold up to ourselves. We may not like what we see. And the truth provides a clearer reflection than dramatization can provide. If you're ready, let's get started.
One of my favorite films that few people have heard of is this achingly beautiful story about a man who studies wolves in the arctic. The themes are complex, the actors are brilliant, and the film is unique in its depiction of man and nature. ​ While this movie is based on the book that is based on a true story by Farley Mowat, how true is that true story? How do you grade a movie when the true story it is based on is less than truthful? Who determines what a natural resource is? Why doesn't John like this movie and why do he and Dawn have an aversion to nature?
The Beats. Iconoclastic representations of freedom. Romanticized. Criticized. Eulogized. But, what did it mean to be a Beat? "Howl" does not tell you because it is a biography of a poem. A poem that exercised the freedom of spoken word and thought. A poem that reinforced that same freedom as the subject of an obscenity trial. A poem that has spoken to people for nearly sixty years. ​This is our two-part examination of a film. "Howl" While seemingly simple due to its scripts written from transcripts, bears some examination to set the context for the time period in which it exists. John Helix sets that context for us in Part One as we talk about the movie. In Part Two, we will examine the facts and compare them to the film.
The Beats. Iconoclastic representations of freedom. Romanticized. Criticized. Eulogized. But, what did it mean to be a Beat?  ​ "Howl" does not tell you because it is a biography of a poem. A poem that exercised the freedom of spoken word and thought. A poem that reinforced that same freedom as the subject of an obscenity trial. A poem that has spoken to people for nearly sixty years. ​ This is our two-part examination of a film. "Howl" While seemingly simple due to its scripts written from transcripts, bears some examination to set the context for the time period in which it exists. John Helix sets that context for us in Part One as we talk about the movie. In Part Two, we will examine the facts and compare them to the film.
What do you know about "Norma Rae"? I mean, aside from the five second clip which is shown at the Oscars every year of Sally Field standing on top​ of a table holding a sign that says "UNION". Did you know she was a real person? Did you know that the movie helped union efforts in the United States (briefly) before Ronald Reagan came into office? If you are reading this on Labor Day, did you know that unions are the reason you likely have today off? There are so many questions. Thankfully, myself, Dawn and our friend and union organizer Lolita are hear to provide the answers.
What happens when you plan a great episode and forget to hit the record button? You end up with no episodes to release and a date coming up quick. What to do, what to do. I know! Let's do a personal journey episode. If I ever use the term "influencer" please put me out of my misery.​
What happens when a ​true story about corporate greed and mental illness become a comedic film? The answer is a lot of great things. But, what happens when you talk about what really happened? It turns out that it is not as funny anymore, and I think I ruined the film for John. Join us as we talk about the real story behind this movie based on a true story.
This is one of those movies which you are always told is great, but you never get around to seeing it. To tell you the truth, if it had not been for Lolita, I don't think I ever would have seen this film. And, I would have missed out on what is probably the biopic that sets the bar for all other biopics. Is it true to reality? Hint: We have never given an A grade before. ​
Did David Frost "get" Richard Nixon to apologize to the American people for Watergate? Was it a winner-take-all situation? How did checkbook journalism play into the Nixon/Frost Interviews. Rob is joined by John Helix and Dawn to talk about the true story behind "Frost/Nixon".​ Will they be nattaling nabobs of negativity. Oh, yeah. They will.
What happens when you don't come from the right stock?​ What happens when you aren't accepted? Do you rebel? Do you succeed? Do you whack a fellow skater on the knee? Maybe not. ​ "iTonya" is the brilliant movie about the life of Tonya Harding. The things that are true in this movie will surprise you, as will the amount of sympathy that comes gushing out for Tonya Harding. Yeah, we were surprised too. ​ I am fortunate to have as my guests, Dawn, Josh and Diana to discuss this amazing film about an incredibily talented staker.
What a surprise to see a piece of history that has never been brought to the forefront. "Hidden Figures" is an enjoyable, feel-good film, but does it provide the tribute the filmmakers intended? Listen as Rob and John talk about White Savior Trope and white privledge in an episode that is topical and timely. Boy, do we have a lot of work to do.
What happens when a writer becomes a public figure? How much of yourself should you have to give to the rest of the world, just because you wrote a book? Can you trust that a reporter will present the person you are? ​ These are the questions that David Foster Wallace wrestled with when his book, "Infinite Jest" became a bestseller. Rob, John and Dawn talk about these questions and more we find out the truth behind "The End Of The Tour".
Jake La  Motta was a monster. But is there a value to having monsters like him in our society? Rob will talk about that, and much more with his guest, musician John Helix. as we gain some insight into the mind of a boxer.
P.L. Travers was a fascinating and flawed woman who stood on her own. Walt Disney was a man who knew what he wanted, and he knew how to get it. Is "Saving Mr. Banks" the story of a woman who has a cathartic experience and comes to terms with issues with her father, or is it about a woman who is trying to protect her intellectual property? Mariam will join me to dissect the messages contained in "Saving Mr. Banks".​
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