Episode 159 – Tremors

Episode 159 – Tremors

We owe a debt of gratitude to Tremors (Underwood, 1990). Its arrival kicked off another boom cycle for one of our favorite subgenres – the creature feature! About every twenty years we get a new permutation of this subgenre and now it was the nineties’ turn. It was time for…

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Episode 158 – Diabolique

Episode 158 – Diabolique

Is Diabolique (Clouzot, 1955) a film noir or a thriller? We firmly assert that it is one of the most delectable, and yes, diabolical noir masterpieces to come out of the 1950s. That it manages to be thrilling as well is a testament to the deft hand of Henri-Georges Clouzot,…

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Episode 157 – The Square

Episode 157 – The Square

It’s May again! And you know what that means around these parts – film noir. We are in our second year of the Noir City festival postponement in Austin due to COVID, but we are soldiering on with some of our favorite titles that fall under the broad heading of…

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Episode 156 – Monsoon Wedding

Episode 156 – Monsoon Wedding

By special invitation from Mira Nair, we are guests at the raucous, glorious, marigold-covered Monsoon Wedding (2001). Delhi, its sights and sounds, its people, its rains, and its power outages are the setting for the traditional wedding ceremony set to consecrate the arranged marriage of Aditi Verma to Hemant Rai.…

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Episode 155 – My Twentieth Century

Episode 155 – My Twentieth Century

Much like the electric light, telegraph, and motion pictures it chronicles, My Twentieth Century (Enyedi, 1989) is a marvel of its age. Luminous to the point of transcendence, it is quite simply one of the most beautiful things ever committed to film. The divergent paths of our twin protagonists Dóra…

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Episode 154 – A Room with a View

Episode 154 – A Room with a View

Rapturous. This word perfectly describes my feelings about A Room with a View (Ivory, 1985). You could also use this word to describe my feelings about the scenery, the performances, the score, the costuming, and Italy itself. I have been saving this gem since we started the podcast, and it…

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Episode 153 – L’Argent

Episode 153 – L’Argent

I carry a particular impression with me about Robert Bresson’s L’Argent (1983). It strikes me as a stately and austere museum whose only exhibit is devoted to the artifacts of a tragic and deadly crime. As I wander its minimalist halls, I am met with object lessons and vivid displays…

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Episode 152 – Daughters of the Dust

Episode 152 – Daughters of the Dust

Julie Dash’s Daughters of the Dust (1991) is a groundbreaking and timeless film. It was the first feature film directed by an African-American woman distributed theatrically in the United States. It was a visual and artistic triumph, earning a Best Cinematography award at Sundance for Director of Photography Arthur Jafa.…

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Episode 151 – Killer of Sheep

Episode 151 – Killer of Sheep

I have been waiting to talk about Charles Burnett’s Killer of Sheep (1978) for a long time. I first recommended it all the way back in episode 005. In my estimation, it’s one of the most important American films ever made, independent or otherwise. It’s a moving document of a…

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Episode 150 – Toni Erdmann

Episode 150 – Toni Erdmann

Have you had anyone in your life like the title character from Toni Erdmann (Ade, 2016)? A family member, a friend’s dad, a work colleague? And are you still traumatized? All kidding aside, writer/director Maren Ade, along with her actors Sandra Hüller and Peter Simonischek, delves deeply into the complexities of…

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