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New Podcast! Scannain Podcast (2019) #14!

It’s time for the Scannain podcast!

This week, I join Jay Coyle and Luke Dunne from Film in Dublin to discuss the week in film.  As usual, we talk about what we watched this week, including an in-depth discussion of Unicorn Store, the charm of Grosse Point Blank, a reflection on the two sequels to The Matrix, the power of Little Woods and the inevitability of remaking Akira. In terms of film news, the big news of the week is the launch of Criterion Channel, which is now streaming classic movie content online. There is also the passing of veteran character actor Seymour Cassel. And a nice bracing dose of tax reform, with revisions made to Section 481.

All of this plus the top ten and the new releases.

The top ten:

  1. What Men Want
  2. Five Feet Apart
  3. The Sisters Brothers
  4. Missing Link
  5. Captain Marvel
  6. Us
  7. Peppa Pig: Festival of Fun
  8. Pet Sematary
  9. Shazam!
  10. Dumbo

New releases:

  • Wonder Park
  • Hell Boy
  • Don’t Go
  • Little
  • mid90s
  • Wild Rose

New Podcast! Scannain Podcast (2019) #12!

It’s time for the Scannain podcast!

This week, I join Ronan Doyle and Jay Coyle to discuss the week in film. It’s a light week for Ronan and myself, but Jay has us covered with deep dives that extend from Varda through to the joy of Music and Lyrics or the siren call from Under the Silver Lake. In terms of film news, we mark the passing of Broncho McLoughlin, take a look at April at the Irish Film Institute, check in on the release date of The Dig and chart a number of upcoming Irish digital releases.

The top ten:

  1. Fisherman’s Friends
  2. Fighting With My Family
  3. A Dog’s Way Home
  4. How to Train Your Dragon III: The Hidden World
  5. Green Book
  6. The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
  7. Instant Family
  8. What Men Want
  9. Captain Marvel
  10. Us

New releases:

  • The Vanishing
  • Being Frank: The Chris Sievey Story
  • Dumbo
  • Out of Blue

Non-Review Review: Us

Us is fascinating, if undercut by comparisons to Get Out.

Get Out was a phenomenal feature debut from writer and director Jordan Peele, an unexpected left-turn from a comedian who was (at that time) best know for his work on one of the decade’s best sketch comedy shows, Key & Peele. It was an unexpectedly sharp piece of social satire, an incredibly pointed commentary on race and identity in contemporary America, one held together by an incredibly strong central metaphor. Get Out was driven by an almost single-minded commitment to its core ideas, which were skillfully wed to a genre vehicle. It was always clear exactly what Get Out was saying, and why it was saying that in the way that it was.

Taking a second swing.

Us is a fundamentally messier film, at once more conventional in terms of its structure and rhythms while being more abstract and confused in its central metaphors. One of the central throughlines of Us is the concept of “the untethering”, and it often feels like a metaphor for the film’s own internal creative process. Us is a lot less focused than Get Out, a lot less together. It often seems like the film is caught in a tug-of-war between its two core elements: on one hand, the desire to present an old-fashioned home-invasion-turned-national-crisis narrative in the style of everything from The Strangers to Dawn of the Dead; on the other, a central metaphor touching on everything from Jungian anxiety to class warfare to the modern division of the United States.

So, to answer the important questions about Us: no, the film is not as good as Get Out; and yes, the film is really good.

Face yourself.

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Is V About Obama?

We caught V last night on TV3. I’m still disappointed no high definition channel is offering it – though, judging by the special effects quality, we weren’t missing much. We’re all fairly undecided on the show, which is a fairly solid reissue of a cult classic, rather than an attempt at a redesign. Don’t expect anything as smart or insightful as Battlestar Galactica and you should be relatively pleased. I think we’ll give this at least a season pass, and then review after that. Anyway, it was hard to watch the remake without the obvious themes playing in my head. Is V a criticism of what the media have dubbed Obama-mania?


The New Republicans?

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The DVD Dilemma…

I have a moral dilemma. Pixar’s Up is released in the United States next weekend. It has opened to nigh-universal praise at Cannes. My girlfriend is anticipating the film like nobody’s business. And we’ll have to wait five months to get to see it over here. By that stage, the DVD and Blu Ray will have been released in the United States.

So, should I feel guilty about wanting to import a legally purchased DVD or Blu Ray of a film that hasn’t arrived in cinemas yet?

You shouldn't have to trek halfway around the world to see Up...

You shouldn't have to trek halfway around the world to see Up...

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