Cinemaholics Podcast: Our Top 10 Movies of 2017

2017

2017 is over, but we’re just getting started. I’m not usually the biggest fan of conversations over general rankings (my yearly power rankings aside), but I do find them most useful years later, when I’m trying to remember what I thought of the filmgoing landscape with some perspective. That’s why I do rankings, period, and it’s triple effective when I get to hear Top 10s from my Cinemaholics cohosts.

Our lists do feature some expected overlap, including a clear Cinemaholics “winner,” if you want to call it that. Turns out Brigsby Bear had the most collective impact on me, Will Ashton, and Maveryke Hines, and hopefully some of you awesome listeners.

Enjoy the episode, and if you just can’t wait, here are our Top 10 lists written out below.

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Cinemaholics Review: Jumanji, The Greatest Showman, Bright, and Downsizing

I’ve been out of town for the last two weeks, so I haven’t had a chance to share all of our latest episodes of Cinemaholics. We’ve put out three since our review of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and two of them have been bonus “Last Call” episodes. You can check out all of them above, and let me know in the comments if there’s anything else you want us to review in the coming weeks as we catch up.

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Cinemaholics Review: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Star Wars

Star Wars: The Last Jedi is the only film we talked about on this week’s podcast, and boy did we talk for a while. Will Ashton and Maveryke Hines joined me for a three-pronged discussion.

First, we shared our thoughts on the entire Star Wars filmography so far in order to give an overall impression of where we’re at with these movies going into The Last Jedi. Next, our spoiler-free review of the film. Finally, we dove into a full spoiler discussion, so keep an ear out for our spoiler warning and transition music.

Because we recorded this episode on Friday, some of the negative backlash to the film had already come to light, giving us a chance to address some of it throughout our review. Agree? Disagree? Sound off in the comments.

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The Shape of Water: The Past is the Key to the Future

the shape of water

Watching The Shape of Water, I expected a wholly original story based on a simple premise. A woman falls in love with a merman. Instead, Guillermo del Toro’s film has a surprisingly familiar set of themes and ideas. Its originality lies in how it blends three core messages for the viewer to internalize.

The first message: the past is the key to the future. This scaly, unpredictable creature found in the Amazon is implied to be an ancient force of nature far removed from the technological advances of 60s Baltimore. Yet every character wants to use this creature as a device for unlocking the future. A competitive future. A future of scientific discoveries. Even a future of artistic expression.

The second message: the people who will unlock the future are the silent. The unseen. The meek will indeed inherit the earth. Finally, the third message: love is the purest way to unlock the future, bringing about our greatest talents. Love is our purpose.

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Cinemaholics: Winter Movie Preview 2017-2018

winter movie preview

On the show this week, I sit with Will Ashton and Maveryke Hines to discuss our most anticipated films of the Winter season. We each picked three specific films to highlight, listed out a few honorable mentions, and agreed to “share” our excitement for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which we’ll be able to review in full next week.

We also got a chance to briefly discuss some movies we’ve seen over the last week, though we didn’t have enough time for Mini Reviews. I brought up what’s become one of my favorite films of the entire year, Bad Genius, which is available for rental on VOD. I heartily recommend it, along with The Shape of Water, Guillermo del Toro’s new film hitting a wider release this month.

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Last Flag Flying: When Loving Country is as Easy as Hating It

last flag flying

We’re dependent on the government. We’re dependent on the military. We’re dependent on our soldiers. So when you put your faith and trust into the very entities that hold the key to your survival, it stings all the more when you experience the ugly side of America and war. Especially if you’re a soldier.

Richard Linklater has directed some of my favorite films of all time, so I didn’t hesitate to catch a viewing of his new film Last Flag Flying. It’s a spiritual sequel to The Last Detail, in that it tells a simple road trip story about three aging Vietnam War veterans in 2003.

One of those veterans (“Doc,” played by Steve Carrell) has recently lost his son to the horrors of the Iraq War. His fellow former marines (Sal, played by Bryan Cranston and Mueller, played by Laurence Fishburne) embark on a quest to help Doc bury his son at home in New Hampshire instead of at Arlington Cemetery in Washington D.C.

“I’m not going to bury a marine,” Doc says. “I’m just going to bury my son.” If that sounds unpatriotic to you, then Last Flag Flying has you on its allegorical mind.

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Cinemaholics Review: The Disaster Artist

disaster artist

On this week’s podcast, I’m joined by Will Ashton and Maveryke Hines to review The Disaster Artist, along with a lot of other new releases we saw this week like Marvel’s Runaways and The Man Who Invented Christmas.

Starring James Franco and his brother Dave Franco, The Disaster Artist (which Franco also directed) is a new film from A24 about the making of The Room, known to many as perhaps the “best worst” movie ever made. The film is getting a ton of love from audiences and critics alike, so naturally, we had a great discussion on what we think of the Oscar contender.

The rest of the show is devoted to a slew of Mini Reviews, from a new documentary about Jim Carrey and Andy Kaufman on Netflix to the Nightcrawler writer/director’s follow up film starring Denzel Washington. Plus a few more surprises.

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