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Houselights: A Film Director Podcast
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Houselights: A Film Director Podcast

Author: The Nerd Party

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If you’re looking for the best movie podcast for everyone who appreciates movies, subscribe to “Houselights” today!

Each week, hosts Darren Moser, John Mills, and Tristan Riddell share what they see as a movie director’s signature approach and how it shaped the movies you love. Join them as they unpack the works of some of the most prominent directors - and the lost works of the most masterful auteurs.

Weekly episodes comprise series featuring works of different directors approached in unexpected ways. For example:
  • The entire filmography of a celebrated director like David Fincher or Christopher Nolan;
  • The films of a director during a particular decade, like Francis Ford Coppola in the 1990s;
  • A single film from each decade of the impactful director Spike Lee to see how his style evolved;
  • The approach of different directors to a single franchise character or series, such as Hannibal Lecter or James Bond, and
  • They’re always open to suggestions from listeners at https://thenerdparty.com/contact
In each case, your hosts bring unique takes to the discussion, fostering an informative conversation that’s equally insightful and entertaining...from an objectively critical but objectively fair angle.

So, if you’re interested in the stories behind the story, the decisions that shape our favorite films, and the people who make them happen, “Houselights” is the best movie podcast for you.

We are proud to be part of The Nerd Party Network, which is dedicated to presenting an objective perspective on the media we all love.
189 Episodes
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Emmerich’s direction ensures a brisk pace, balancing explosive action sequences with moments of tension and character development. The screenplay, co-written by Emmerich and Dean Devlin, skillfully interweaves multiple storylines, creating a tapestry of global perspectives. This approach heightens the stakes and fosters a sense of worldwide camaraderie, a theme poignantly encapsulated in President Whitmore’s rousing speech rallying humanity to fight back on July 4th.It combines heart-pounding action, compelling performances, and state-of-the-art effects to deliver an unforgettable cinematic experience. The film’s enduring popularity is a testament to its ability to tap into universal themes of courage, ingenuity, and the indomitable spirit of humanity. For fans of sci-fi and disaster films, “Independence Day” is a must-watch, a thrilling ride that captures the imagination and stirs the soul.
Stargate is a must-watch for sci-fi enthusiasts and anyone who enjoys a good adventure. Its blend of mythology, science fiction, and action makes it a timeless classic that continues to captivate audiences. The film’s impressive special effects, engaging storyline, and memorable characters make it a standout in the sci-fi genre
“Universal Soldier” excels as an action-packed sci-fi film with a unique premise and memorable set pieces, but it falters in narrative cohesion and character development. Van Damme and Lundgren fans, or those with a penchant for ’90s action flicks, will likely find much to enjoy. For others, the film may feel like a relic of its time, offering more spectacle than substance.
*This movie deals with sexual assault.*“Moon-44” is an ambitious film that reaches for the stars but ends up getting lost in a black hole of its own making. It’s a reminder that not all that glitters in space is gold—sometimes, it’s just a floating piece of space junk. If you’re looking for a film to watch, this one might just make you want to leave the planet.
​“Da 5 Bloods” is a film with noble intentions and some truly powerful moments, but it doesn’t always hit the mark. It’s a mixed bag that will resonate with viewers who appreciate its historical context and social commentary, but may leave others feeling unsatisfied with its uneven pacing and narrative complexity. It’s a Spike Lee joint that sparks conversation, but it might not stand out as one of his most memorable works.
In our latest podcast episode, we delve into the provocative and timely film, **BlacKkKlansman**, directed by the ever-bold Spike Lee. This true-story adaptation follows Ron Stallworth, an African-American detective who infiltrates the Ku Klux Klan. With performances that are as compelling as the narrative, the film navigates the complexities of race, identity, and America's tumultuous history with a blend of satire, drama, and unflinching honesty. Lee's direction ensures that while the film is set in the past, its themes resonate loudly in today's society. Our discussion explores the film's layered storytelling, standout performances, and its ability to balance humor with the gravity of its message. Tune in to hear our full review and thoughts on this significant cinematic piece.
“25th Hour” is a powerful exploration of human emotions, regrets, and the choices that shape our lives. Spike Lee’s vision shines through, even when navigating David Benioff’s adaptation of his own novel. If you’re looking for a thought-provoking and intense cinematic experience, this film won’t disappoint.
Join us on this episode of Houselights as we delve into Spike Lee's film Malcolm X. Our hosts explore Denzel Washington's riveting performance, historical accuracy, and its lasting impact on American cinema and culture.
"Do the Right Thing" is a cultural touchstone that remains as relevant today as it was upon its release. Its portrayal of racial tensions, systemic injustice, and the power of community is both a reflection of its time and a prescient commentary on contemporary issues. Spike Lee’s ability to provoke thought and conversation through his art makes "Do the Right Thing" a vital piece of American cinema.
Director Stuart Baird attempts to navigate the complex waters of Star Trek lore, bringing a darker tone to the franchise. The thematic exploration of identity, through the lens of Picard and his clone, offers a compelling study of nature versus nurture. However, the execution falls short of its ambitious premise. *This episode contains discussions of fictional sexual assault.*
“U.S. Marshals” may not surpass its predecessor, but it still offers solid entertainment, especially for fans of action thrillers. While it lacks Harrison Ford’s star power, Tommy Lee Jones holds the film together with his compelling portrayal of Sam Gerard
Stuart Baird's "Executive Decision" may have its quirks, but it's an adrenaline-fueled thriller that keeps viewers hooked from takeoff to landing. Baird's directorial debut showcases his talent for suspense, making this a memorable addition to the action genre.
With its heartfelt message of self-acceptance and dazzling visuals, Barbie is sure to capture the hearts of audiences of all ages. Greta Gerwig has once again proven herself a fantastic storyteller, and the film further evidences her talent and vision.
Greta Gerwig's "Little Women": A cinematic marvel that delicately stitches together the threads of sisterhood, ambition, and love. Gerwig's adaptation dances between past and present, breathing life into Louisa May Alcott's beloved characters. Saoirse Ronan's portrayal of Jo March is a symphony of passion and vulnerability. With its bold choices and luminous storytelling, "Little Women" invites us to ponder our own dreams against the backdrop of history.
Gerwig’s semi-autobiographical script captures the essence of adolescence—the yearning for independence, the clash with parental expectations, and the search for identity. Lady Bird’s journey feels real, raw, and deeply personal. Exceptional performances, hyperrealism, quirky characters, and a nostalgic soundtrack make this film a must-watch. It’s a reminder that even in the ordinary moments, there’s extraordinary beauty waiting to be discovered
​Pawn Sacrifice raises questions about obsession, genius, and the sacrifices made in pursuit of excellence. Whether you’re a chess enthusiast or a curious filmgoer, this movie offers a glimpse into a battle that transcended the chessboard—a battle of ideologies during a tumultuous era.
Set against the backdrop of Japan’s Meiji Restoration, the film follows the journey of Captain Nathan Algren (played brilliantly by Tom Cruise), a disillusioned American Civil War veteran. Algren is hired by the Japanese government to train their newly formed army in Western warfare techniques. However, fate leads him to the samurai, a group fiercely resisting modernization.
“The Siege” goes beyond mere action-thriller territory. It delves into the political and human costs of terrorism and our collective response to it. The film raises thought-provoking questions about civil liberties, prejudice, and the impact of terrorism on society. By doing so, it elevates itself beyond the typical genre fare.
“Glory”, directed by Edward Zwick, is a powerful and poignant historical war drama that chronicles the remarkable story of the 54th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment, one of the Union Army’s earliest African-American regiments during the American Civil War. The film portrays their courage, heroism, and sacrifice as they face both Confederate forces and racial prejudice within their own ranks. Denzel Washington’s Oscar-winning performance and exceptional cinematography make “Glory” a must-see tribute to the resilience and determination of these soldiers.
Tony Scott was a master of kinetic cinema. His need-for-speed tendency permeates every frame of “Unstoppable”. Even in his final film, Scott’s craftsmanship shines. He didn’t go out with a whimper; he left us with a thunderous roar—a testament to his impact on action filmmaking.
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