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The Next Picture Show

Author: Filmspotting Network

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A biweekly roundtable by the former editorial team of The Dissolve examining how classic films inspire and inform modern movies. Episodes take a deep dive into a classic film and its legacy in the first half, then compare and contrast that film with a modern successor in the second. Hosted and produced by Genevieve Koski, Keith Phipps, Tasha Robinson and Scott Tobias. Part of the Filmspotting family of podcasts.
178 Episodes
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It’s rare for a rom-com to situate itself firmly in the realm of contemporary American politics, which makes Jonathan Levin’s new Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen-starring LONG SHOT feel in many ways like a spiritual sequel to 1995’s THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT, right down to both films’ exploration of moral compromise through a big environmental initiative. But LONG SHOT takes a distinctly different comedic approach to its material, which we dig into before bringing these two political romances together to talk about the role dignity, or lack thereof, plays in selling their respective fantasies, how they function as both a romance and a comedy, and how each pulls off its respective grand gesture. Plus, Your Next Picture Show, where we share recent filmgoing experiences in hopes of putting something new on your cinematic radar.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT, LONG SHOT, or anything else in the world of film by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730. Your Next Picture Show: • Tasha: Jason Reitman’s YOUNG ADULT• Scott: James L. Brooks’ HOW DO YOU KNOW?• Keith: Yimou Zhang’s SHADOW• Genevieve: Andrew Rossi’s THE FIRST MONDAY IN MAYOutro Music: Boyz II Men, “Motownphilly”Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
The new Charlize Theron/Seth Rogan rom-com LONG SHOT looks for comedy at the intersection of love and the highest tier of American politics, an unusual combination that positions it as a spiritual successor to an earlier, much more earnest portrayal of a similarly unlikely romance — that of Rob Reiner’s 1995 Aaron Sorkin-penned crowd-pleaser THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT. In this half of our pairing of the two films, we look back at THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT to consider how its Clinton-era populism scans in today’s much different political atmosphere, how it functions as both a political film and a rom-com, and how it handles the extreme power differential at the core of its central romance. Plus, some feedback inspired by our recent episode on UNDER THE SILVER LAKE.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT, LONG SHOT, or anything else film-related by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730.Outro music: Kylie Minogue, “Mr. President”Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
David Robert Mitchell’s wandering, shaggy, endlessly referential UNDER THE SILVER LAKE isn’t nearly as tightly plotted as Roman Polanski’s CHINATOWN, one of its many cinematic reference points, but it’s just as stark and cynical about both human nature and its Los Angeles setting. In this half of our pairing of twisty, paranoid LA mysteries, we dig into whether UNDER THE SILVER LAKE is a movie that can be solved, or a movie that mocks attempts to solve it, before bringing in CHINATOWN to see how these two films approach conspiracies and paranoia, L.A. as a setting and symbol, and women and their would-be saviors. Plus, Your Next Picture Show, where we share recent filmgoing experiences in hopes of putting something new on your cinematic radar.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about CHINATOWN, UNDER THE SILVER LAKE, or anything else in the world of film by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730.Your Next Picture Show: • Genevieve: Joe Cornish’s THE KID WHO WOULD BE KING• Tasha: Julia Hart’s FAST COLOR• Scott: Alex Ross Perry’s HER SMELLOutro Music: R.E.M. “Strange Currencies”Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
In David Robert Mitchell’s new UNDER THE SILVER LAKE, every clue leads deeper down a rabbit hole toward an endpoint that doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the beginning point. In a film as referential as Mitchell’s, that structure seems purposefully lifted from Roman Polanski’s 1974 classic CHINATOWN, another sunlit noir about a private investigator who starts with a simple philandering case and winds up peeking into a secret battle for control of the city. In this half of our pairing of the two films, we dig into CHINATOWN’s legacy and how to reconcile it with the Polanski Problem, examine how its story and performances diverge from the noir tradition, and consider whether its twisty mystery ultimately lands in a satisfying place. Plus, some feedback inspired by our recent episodes on US and VELVET BUZZSAW.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about CHINATOWN, UNDER THE SILVER LAKE, or anything else film-related by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730.Outro music: Destroyer, “Chinatown”Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
The new superhero movie SHAZAM owes such a debt to Penny Marshall’s weird and whimsical 1988 comedy BIG that it includes a giant piano as an homage, but the connections between these two wish-fulfillment fantasies go beyond their shared premises. After discussing how SHAZAM distinguishes itself from other superhero films, and what it might say about the future of the DCEU, we bring in BIG to see how these two films echo and refract each other in their ideas about what maturity looks like to kids, in their depictions of home and family, and in their use of toys as signifiers of childhood. Plus, Your Next Picture Show, where we share recent filmgoing experiences in hopes of putting something new on your cinematic radar.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about BIG, SHAZAM, or anything else in the world of film by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730.Your Next Picture Show: • Tasha: Wim Wenders’ WINGS OF DESIRE (via The Criterion Channel)• Genevieve: Madeleine Sami and Jackie van Beek’s THE BREAKER UPPERERS• Keith: Joseph H. Lewis’ MY NAME IS JULIA ROSS (via The Criterion Channel’s ‘Columbia Noir’ Collection)• Scott: Don Siegel’s THE LINEUP (via The Criterion Channel’s ‘Columbia Noir’ Collection)Outro Music: Queen, “Don’t Stop Me Now”Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
The new SHAZAM, about a 14-year-old kid granted the power of becoming a grown-up superhero, openly acknowledges the debt it owes to Penny Marshall’s 1988 breakthrough BIG, which made a potent comic fantasy out of what adolescents imagine adulthood to be. In this first half of our pairing of the two films, we wrestle with BIG's age-shifted central relationship and marvel over how stars Tom Hanks and Elizabeth Perkins manage to find some real sweetness within an uncomfortable romantic scenario, which leads us to consider how the horrors lurking beneath the comedic premise reveal themselves with age, and whether the film works despite that. Plus, some feedback inspired by our recent episodes on INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS and US, and a response to some criticism of our recent string of superhero pairings. Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about BIG, SHAZAM, or anything else film-related by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730.Works Cited:• ’Big’ Is Secretly a Horror Movie, by Shea Serrano (TheRinger.com)• ‘Big’ Review, by Keith Phipps (TheDissolve.com)• Robert De Niro and the origin of “The Face,” by Scott Tobias (TheDissolve.com)Outro music: Nelly, “Country Grammar”Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Our pairing of devious doppelgängers arrives at Jordan Peele’s new US, which brings into 2019 some of the same themes of paranoia and dread seen in one of its many predecessors, Philip Kaufman’s INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS. After comparing our reactions to US’s “messy by design” narrative and the conversations that have sprung up around it, we bring these two films together to compare how they reflect their respective eras, how each works as horror, and the weird character relationships that underscore the human drama behind the allegory. Plus, Your Next Picture Show, where we share recent filmgoing experiences in hopes of putting something new on your cinematic radar.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, US, or anything else in the world of film by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730.*Show Notes*Works cited:• Unpacking Reddit’s Wildest Theory About US, by Rebecca Alter (Vulture.com)• What Was Hands Across America, and What Does It Have to Do With US?, by Keith Phipps (Slate.com)Your Next Picture Show: • Scott: Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert’s AMERICAN FACTORY, Rachel Leads’ KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE, and Hassan Fazili’s MIDNIGHT TRAVELER• Tasha: The IMMUNITIES podcast, and Terry Gilliam’s THE MAN WHO KILLED DON QUIXOTE• Keith: Steve Mitchell’s KING COHEN, and Larry Cohen’s THE STUFF and GOD TOLD ME TOLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jordan Peele’s new US extends a long history of horror stories that use doppelgängers to explore identity, one that includes as a cornerstone Philip Kaufman’s 1978 adaptation of INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS. This episode we delve into the film’s eerie version of San Francisco to talk about how its atmosphere of dread and late-‘70s malaise distinguishes it from other versions of this story, and amplifies the human drama within this classic alien-invasion narrative. Plus, some feedback inspired by our recent TOTAL RECALL episode and a broader question on the state of film criticism.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, US, or anything else film-related by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730.Outro music: Imogen Heap, “Bad Body Double”Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Our pairing of sci-fi action films with a side of meditation on memory and identity brings in the new CAPTAIN MARVEL to see how Carol Danvers’ journey of lost and reclaimed memories looks next to the very different (and much bloodier) journey taken by Douglas Quaid in Paul Verhoeven’s TOTAL RECALL. We share our reactions to CAPTAIN MARVEL and its choice to center its narrative on an amnesiac hero, then bring in TOTAL RECALL to compare the two films’ approaches to their central ideas about memory, how they function as science-fiction stories, how they treat their female characters, and more. Plus, Your Next Picture Show, where we share recent filmgoing experiences in hopes of putting something new on your cinematic radar.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about TOTAL RECALL, CAPTAIN MARVEL, or anything else in the world of film by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730. *Show Notes*Works cited:• Captain Marvel’s Cat Wrangler Explains How Goose Became a Flerken Hero on Set, by April Wolfe (Vulture.com)Your Next Picture Show: • Scott: Cristina Gallego and Ciro Guerra’s BIRDS OF PASSAGE, and Movie Premieres Unlimited (@NightOpening)• Keith: Robert Aldrich’s VERA CRUZ• Genevieve: Robbie Thompson and Niko Henrichon’s MEET THE SKRULLS comic, and FX’s WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWSOutro Music: Smashing Pumpkins, “Today”Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
The newest MCU entry CAPTAIN MARVEL is, among other things, an action-packed science-fiction film that’s also interested in the question of how memory relates to identity. That, plus the film’s 1990s setting, put us in mind of another cosmic blockbuster from that era with similar ideas crackling beneath its action-movie surface: Paul Verhoeven’s TOTAL RECALL. In this half of our pairing of brawny-yet-brainy blockbusters, we debate how much TOTAL RECALL is asking us to interrogate the bloody action in which it revels, whether casting Arnold Schwarzenegger as a would-be ordinary Joe contributes to or detracts from the film’s self-awareness, and if there’s any validity to the reading that Quaid’s memory trip is all just a dream. Plus, some feedback inspired by our recent pairings, and pairings that could have been.Please share your comments, thoughts, and questions about TOTAL RECALL, CAPTAIN MARVEL, or anything else film-related by sending an email to comments@nextpictureshow.net, or leaving a short voicemail at (773) 234-9730.Outro music: Jerry Goldsmith, "The Big Jump"Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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Comments (6)

Martin Riggs

nice vocal fry.

Oct 22nd
Reply

Rruben Rrz

los grey

Oct 7th
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Nunia Bizzness

dont even know how I ended up with this app. it, and this podcast sucks donkey balls

Oct 4th
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Mathew Moody

An aspect to the Coens that one of you very briefly touched on, but seems glaring to me, is their absolutely relentless use of religious symbolism. In A Serious Man, we have a modern version of a Job-esque story. In Hail, Ceasar, we can see a clear Christ figure in Eddie Mannix. Whether he is taking orders from an unseen boss somewhere unknown, fixing the lives of those put under his care, or having to choose the studio, i.e. fasting for forty days and forty nights, instead of choosing to give all that up and work for Lockhead, i.e Satan, to the literal mount of transfiguration in the studio amongst the set for Hail Ceasar, the Coens are using religious symbolism as one of the sharpest tool of their craft. I believe they had religious upbringings that lend a very clever and deep pengant for telling stories that everyone can relate to, in one way or another. Thanks for making a binge-worthy podcast for me to start from the beginning :)

Sep 30th
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Safiullah Sarwari

India

Sep 27th
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The One

I really like this podcast!

Sep 21st
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