24 Oct


In this episode, Tyler and David are joined by Asterios Kokkinos to discuss Star Wars, Marvel, and his new book Toys 4 Cheap.

Musical Notation: Wattstax

22 Oct


.In this episode, West discusses Mel Stuart’s Wattstax.

Moonlight: Waxing and Waning, by Rudie Obias

21 Oct


Just cutting to the chase: Moonlight is my favorite movie of the year. It’s simply the best thing I’ve watched that’s deep, layered, and something we never see on the big screen, the coming-of-age of a gay black man in the inner city. Moonlight accomplishes a lot in only 110 minutes and anyone who’s interested in cinema should stop what they’re doing right now, find where this movie is playing at a theater near you, buy a ticket, and watch it in all of its glory and wash over you. It’s an experience that’s deeply engaging and unique.



21 Oct


In this episode, Tyler and David play some classic clips from their last 500 episodes!

Fire at Sea: Island in the Stream, by David Bax

21 Oct


Gianfranco Rosi’s Fire at Sea is, in some ways, like many other documentaries we’ve seen before, being an everyday portrait of life in a small, company town. The tiny Mediterranean island of Lampedusa, though, actually has two industries that define it. One is fishing. The other is rescuing African immigrants who have braved inhuman conditions to escape their war-torn homes in attempt to make a new life in Europe, only to find their boats sinking and themselves dying of exposure and dehydration with Lampedusa the nearest friendly land.


The Handmaiden: Cruel Intentions, by David Bax

20 Oct


In any sadomasochistic sexual transaction, there is a dominant party and a subordinate one. The performative traits of each role may reflect the obvious power imbalance suggested by the monikers but, in truth, most folks who engage in such activities will tell you that the sub is the one who’s really in charge. Park Chan-wook’s The Handmaiden—a well-appointed period piece that the director nevertheless transmutes into his usual ruminations on violence both physical and psychic done in service of love, lust and obsession—embodies this standard S&M dynamic exquisitely. Park’s characters repeatedly pull the rug out from under us and one another, often at the exact moment they seem most vulnerable. It’s a neat trick but, in the hands of an artist working at the top of his formal and narrative talents, it may also be a masterpiece.


31: Make Them Die Slowly, by Matt Warren

20 Oct


First things first: I’m an old school Rob Zombie fan from way fucking back. My favorite concert going memory of all time is the ersatz White Zombie frontman’s 1998 tour stop at the Great Saltair in Salt Lake during the Hellbilly Deluxe era—which involved (among other kitschy spookshow visuals) a clear Lucite guitar filled with cow blood. So never let it be said that I’m not all-in on Zombie as a purveyor of industrial pop metal mayhem served up in a big bag of Halloween candy.


We Are X: More Fun in the New World, by Matt Warren

20 Oct


Have you ever heard of the Chiba-based prog band X Japan? Me neither, but there are thousands of people out there who apparently have, as the copious footage of Beatlemania-esque levels of pandemonium featured in in director Stephen Kijak’s biographical rock doc We Are X makes abundantly clear.


Playing Nice with Sphere, by Sarah Brinks

20 Oct


Thank you for reading “Playing Nice,” a series of articles that will examine group dynamics in film. I’m not a behavioral psychologist or anything but I am an avid movie watcher and life-long member/observer of the human race. One of the things that have fascinated me over the years is how group dynamics are depicted in film and especially how they are depicted when the thin veneer of society is stripped away.

**This article will contain spoilers. I highly recommend you watch the film first and then read the article if you care about spoilers.** Sphere is a film that examines fear. After the discovery of an alien spaceship on the ocean floor a group of specialists are flown out to the middle of the ocean and sent to an underwater habitat to make contact with the potential alien life onboard. Dustin Hoffman plays Dr. Norman Goodman, a phycologist who wrote a report years ago about the group that should make first contact with an alien lifeform. He suggests a psychologist, a mathematician (Harry, played by Samuel L Jackson), a biochemist (Beth, played by Sharon Stone), and an astrophysicist (Ted, played by Liev Schreiber). It turns out it is a space ship from Earth that fell into a black hole and crashed in the ocean in Earths past. Onboard the ship is a sphere. It is large and looks like it is made of liquid metal; it is a strange object because it is able to choose what it reflects. It turns out the object can also imbue powers on people, making them able to manifest their fears, wishes, and dreams.


EPISODE 500d: with special guests AMY NICHOLSON and TODD VAN DER WERFF

20 Oct


In this episode, Tyler and David are joined by Amy Nicholson and Todd VanDerWerff to celebrate their 500th episode!