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The Big Picture

Author: The Ringer

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The Ringer dives into movies as Sean Fennessey sits down with Hollywood’s biggest filmmakers, breaks down the latest industry trends, handicaps the upcoming Oscars race, and reviews new films with Ringer colleagues like Shea Serrano, Amanda Dobbins, and Bill Simmons.

315 Episodes
It's time once again for a Movie Draft. Chris Ryan returns with hopes of staving off Sean and Amanda to claim his first draft victory (15:00). Then, Sean is joined by Clea DuVall, an actress you may know from films like 'But I’m a Cheerleader,' 'Zodiac,' and 'Argo.' They talk about DuVall’s second film as a director, 'Happiest Season'—a charming holiday rom-com about a couple played by Kristen Stewart and Mackenzie Davis—that hits Hulu on Wednesday (59:47). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Chris Ryan and Clea DuVall
Ron Howard's adaptation of JD Vance's bestselling memoir hits Netflix this week—Sean and Amanda look at the film and the careers of stars Amy Adams and Glenn Close, including their chances at their first-ever Academy Award win (1:00). 'Hillbilly Elegy' also inspired a deep dive into the history of a tricky subcategory: Oscar Bait. What is it? When did it start? What movies count as Oscar Bait? Sean and Amanda break it all down (27:00). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins
With so many movies pushed to 2021, TV has taken an even bigger share of our viewing time this year. Sean and Amanda talk about the Netflix sensation ‘The Queen’s Gambit,’ Steve McQueen’s ‘Small Axe’ anthology series, and the best miniseries they’ve seen this year (1:00). Then, Sean is joined by Aneesh Chaganty, the director of 2018’s ‘Searching’ and a new thriller called ‘Run’ that hits Hulu this weekend (48:00). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guest: Aneesh Chaganty
The last big-ticket theatrical release, 'Wonder Woman 1984,' is still on the calendar. Will it go to HBO Max? PVOD? When will we see it? Amanda and Sean break down the possibilities (0:54). Then, they are joined by David Hill, the host of the new podcast series 'Gamblers,' to pick their top five gambling movies (17:44). Finally, Sean interviews director Christopher Landon, a Blumhouse staple who brought us the 'Happy Death Day' series, to talk about his clever new body-swap horror-comedy 'Freaky' (1:16:30). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: David Hill and Christopher Landon
Sean and Amanda dive back into the mailbag to answer an array of questions about under-the-radar 2020 movies you can watch now on VOD and streaming, the prolonged closure of movie theaters around the country, and the book adaptation they've always wanted to see on the big screen, among others (0:50). Then, Sean is joined by Michael Angelo Covino and Kyle Marvin to discuss their delightful new film 'The Climb' (59:00). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Michael Angelo Covino and Kyle Marvin
Things are quiet in the world of movies, so we’re taking a moment to celebrate one of our favorite subgenres: GARBAGE CRIME. What’s that? Allow chief criminologist Chris Ryan to break it all down and hand out some awards to the very best the subgenre has to offer. (1:00) Then, Sean is joined by writer-director Brandon Cronenberg to talk about his viscerally overwhelming new film, ‘Possessor.’ (1:05:00) Host: Sean Fennessey Guests: Chris Ryan and Brandon Cronenberg
We want to go back to a more nostalgic, maybe even more hopeful, period in history. So Sean is joined by Richard Linklater and journalist Melissa Maerz to talk about Maerz’s new book, ‘Alright, Alright, Alright: The Oral History of Richard Linklater's Dazed and Confused,’ which comes out on November 17 (47:00). To warm up for that chat, Amanda and Sean share their top five Richard Linklater movies (1:07). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Richard Linklater and Melissa Maerz
It’s Election Day, so Sean and Amanda have compiled a collection of double features for the politically minded. Cast your ballots! (31:29) Plus, they discuss the passing of iconic screen actor Sean Connery and briefly discuss David Fincher’s forthcoming film ‘Mank’ (0:52). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins
Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins review the movies you need to see. Plus: Top 5s, Movie Drafts, Oscars analysis, and conversations with Hollywood's biggest filmmakers.
The end of the month beckons, and with it another Movie Draft. Chaos agent Chris Ryan returns to join Sean and Amanda in a showdown selection of 2013 movies (0:40). Then, Sean and Amanda are joined by 'On the Rocks' writer-director Sofia Coppola and the star of her new film, Rashida Jones, to talk about their careers, their dads, and their label makers (1:07:08). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Chris Ryan; Sofia Coppola and Rashida Jones
Sacha Baron Cohen's Kazakhstan correspondent has returned in a sequel to the 2006 comedy classic. Sean and Amanda are joined by Bryan Curtis and David Shoemaker of 'The Press Box' to discuss whether or not Borat is still effective in today's absurd political environment, how Borat pulled off the stunts this time around, and why this is really Tutar's movie (0:55). Then, Sean and Amanda break down a pair of misbegotten new remakes: Ben Wheatley's 'Rebecca' and Robert Zemeckis's 'The Witches' (52:33). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Bryan Curtis and David Shoemaker
With Sofia Coppola's new film 'On the Rocks' arriving this weekend on Apple TV+, Sean and Amanda are convening to discuss her work as one of the greatest filmmakers of her generation. They discuss her career, her family's creative history, and what makes her the embodiment of cinematic cool. Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins
In the terrifying year of 2020, we needed our horror correspondent to weigh in on the state of the genre, so Chris Ryan joins Sean to talk about the new Adam Sandler Netflix vehicle ‘Hubie Halloween,’ the best horror flicks of the year so far, and 20 underrated scary movie classics. Host: Sean Fennessey Guest: Chris Ryan
Acclaimed writer-director Aaron Sorkin’s new film, ‘The Trial of the Chicago 7,’ hits Netflix this weekend, so Sean and Amanda commence a walk-and-talk on one of their favorite Hollywood voices. They examine his long career on film and television, share their top 5s, and break down his new movie from every angle. Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins
To celebrate 300 episodes of 'The Big Picture,' Sean and Amanda are opening up the mailbag and answering an array of wide-ranging questions about the movies that drew them to their careers, the future of film post-COVID-19, the movies they think the critics got totally wrong, and more (5:01). Then, Sean is joined by filmmaker Garrett Bradley to talk about her new film, 'Time' (1:40:31). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Garrett Bradley
This week is the 40th anniversary of ‘Private Benjamin,’ Meyers’s first screenplay. Meyers would go on to write and direct a number of modern comedy classics, including ‘What Women Want,’ ‘Something’s Gotta Give,’ ‘It’s Complicated,’ and, yes, ‘The Holiday.’ Sean and Amanda dive deep into her filmography to build a Hall of Fame for one of the most successful and arguably underrated filmmakers of her time. Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins
In this unprecedented year, the Oscars need a boost. Sean and Amanda have just the right ideas, including ways to improve the ceremony, rule changes to enliven the ballot, and a new way to unveil the winners (0:30). Then, Sean is joined by filmmaker Alex Ross Perry ('Her Smell,' 'Listen Up Philip') to talk about how independent filmmakers are responding to the COVID-19 shutdown, what the future of indie cinema could look like, and what he's been watching in quarantine (57:35). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guest: Alex Ross Perry
Top Five Movie Dads

Top Five Movie Dads


What makes a great movie father? Inspired by the new movie 'Dick Johnson Is Dead,' Sean and Amanda pick not necessarily the best movie dads, but their favorites (15:23). Then, Sean is joined by 'Dick Johnson' director Kirsten Johnson (and a special guest) to discuss her new Netflix film (55:24). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Kirsten Johnson
The 2012 Movie Draft

The 2012 Movie Draft


‘Tenet’ is struggling at the box office. The MCU is on pause. And TV is threatening to take over our beloved movies. So we have to return to the past. That’s right: The movie draft is back. Chris Ryan rejoins Sean and Amanda to make their picks for the best of 2012 (1:17). Then screenwriter Billy Ray joins the show to talk about his Showtime miniseries ‘The Comey Rule' (1:31:54). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Chris Ryan and Billy Ray
We're ready to complete our journey into the commercials, music videos, TV shows, and films of David Fincher. But there are some shenanigans in our midst. What's his greatest music video? What will be no. 1? And is 'Mindhunter' making a comeback into the top 10? We feel like saying more, but we don't want to ruin the surprise (0:41). Then, Sean is joined by writer-director Miranda July to talk about her new film, 'Kajillionaire' (1:10:05). Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins Guests: Chris Ryan and Miranda July
Comments (17)

Whitney Ivanoff

Short answer: Obviously, yes. Who wants to pay upwards of $10 a person (double that if you visit the concession stand) to watch a movie with a bunch of strangers who may or may not talk through important scenes, text the whole time, or just otherwise mess with your experience entirely?? You're better off shelling out the $20 to catch the movie on VOD in the comfort of your own home, where you can eat/drink whatever you please. You have a perfect view of the screen; you can pause or rewind on a whim...

Aug 5th
Reply (2)

Michael Koontz

does anyone listen to this podcast?

Aug 1st
Reply (1)

Brian Norberg

Cool insight though Edgar's audio quality is unfortunately shit

Jul 28th


I don’t understand the lack of show notes! Write you films that are mentioned.

Jul 23rd

Sean Smith

These two are pathetic. Please never leave your houses.

May 19th

Adam Westerholm


Feb 21st

John Simpson

Great episode

Dec 9th

Yves-Langston Barthaud

can you publish this list please?

Dec 7th

Harry Parsons

how could you only talk about Mark Hamills Joker portail as the joker for about 10 seconds ? disgraceful

Nov 9th

Vasilis Tsompanidis

Great, but how could you miss talking about Bo Peep, maybe the best female icon in recent Pixar movies? She mostly drives the action plus she saves Woody like 10 times.. In a very male actiony way too.

Jun 23rd


finally some Free Solo love from the Ringer

Feb 7th

Dave Courtney

if it's not on Netflix it doesn't matter? Seriously? That sort of rhetoric makes it hard to take any of this conversation seriously. You do realize that of the close to 150 2018 new releases I saw last year, 98 percent were not Netflix originals and a good 85 percent were not on Netflix at all? There is plenty to watch that is not on Netfkix, and of the stuff I saw, its worth noting that 6 of them were in my bottom 10 of the year.

Feb 3rd

Mary Dobrian

I LOVED seeing Angela Lansbury at the end of this film. She is the same age as Dick Van Dyke (93) and also an icon of at least one live action Disney film of the Mary Poppins era (Bedknob and Broomstick). Seeing her was a delightful surprise for me. I also highly doubt that DvD's dancing was CGI. He is still a very spry guy, and the sequence was very brief. (I wouldn't be surprised if he still dances at home every day. 😁) On the whole, I thought you guys were overly harsh on this movie. My family and I are all big fans of the original, and I expected to be quite critical of this, but I mostly found it sweet and charming. I liked the Meryl Streep sequence too. My biggest criticism was the villian(s) - Colin Firth and his animated coynterpart - who seemed to just be evil for evil's sake. The original film didn't really have that: the capitalist bankers came off as misguided, but not really evil, and there was a sense of redemption for Mr. Banks at the end. As far as Emily Blunt is concerned, I felt she made the role her own and did a great job. I wish there had been a bit more of her in the film.

Jan 14th

Pooriya Sarhadimoghadam

Oct 30th
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