Cinecast Episode 216 – Be Excellent to Each Other

 
 
There is fair bit of meat on the bones of the multiplex this week and Kurt, Andrew along with a sneezy and congested Matt Gamble tackle Terrence Malick, Woody Allen and the current state of the X-Men franchise. Everyone seems to have a different stance on these films, and the discussion is pretty lively. Beware of spoilers but stick around for some important tidbits and caveats regarding Midnight in Paris. The segment re-naming contest continues another week, free DVDs for everyone, Yummy! In the meantime, we do go through 3 or so What We watched each (Drew does Zack Snyder, Kurt does Terrence Malick, Gamble does a couple of upcoming feature films (and warns us off of both of ’em) as well as more HBO. Gamble takes off but Kurt and Drew soldier onward past the three hour mark along to DVD picks, Netflix Instant arrivals and departures. Plus, all the free trimmings you are accustomed to from the this third row podcast: Do you want to find out answer to life, the universe and everything? Is it true that if Bill and Ted had a Ménage à trois with Audrey Tautou, you could get a perfect film? These pressing issues and more in this weeks show. Cheers.

As always, please join the conversation by leaving your own thoughts in the comment section below and again, thanks for listening!


 
 

 

To download the show directly, paste the following URL into your favorite downloader:
http://rowthree.com/audio/cinecast_11/episode_216.mp3

 
 
Full show notes are under the seats…



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IN-HOUSE BUSINESS:
– Jandy’s 100 Reasons Why I Love the Movies
– Thanks to Mad Hatter for the kind words in his latest podcast
– “what we watched” naming contest

List of DVDs for grabs:
The Day After
Azumi
Crimson Rivers
Kentucky Fried Movie
Land of the Blind
Elizabethtown
Quills
CQ
Hard Core Logo
The King
Let Sleeping Corpses Lie
Dark Water
(Japanese version)


MAIN REVIEWS:
Tree of Life (Kurt’s Review)
X-Men: First Class


OTHER REVIEW:
Midnight in Paris (Kurt’s Review)


WHAT ELSE WE WATCHED:

Andrew
The Way Back (1/2)
300
Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Houle

Matt
Art of Getting By
Larry Crown
– “True Blood”
– “Game of Thrones”

Kurt
Badlands
Thin Red Line
Seven


DVD PICKS:

Kurt
Another Year
True Grit

Andrew
Superman: Anthology [Blu-ray] – Another Year


OTHER DVDs NOW AVAILABLE:
Jandy’s DVD Triage
True Grit
The Housemaid
A Matador’s Mistress
Just Go With It
The Company Men
61*
[Blu-ray] The Outlaw Josey Wales [Blu-ray digi-Book] American: The Bill Hicks Story [Blu-ray] The Wild Hunt [Blu-ray] The Man Who Would Be King [Blu-ray digi-Book] Vera Cruz [Blu-ray] Hair [Blu-ray] The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert [Blu-ray] New York New York [Blu-ray] The Bridge on the River Kwai [Blu-ray] “Breaking Bad” (s3)
“The Big C” (s1)


INSTANT WATCH NEW RELEASES/EXPIRING SOON:

Kurt
The Fly (new)
Summertime (expiring June 15)

Andrew
– “Masters of Horror” Series (Dante, Argento, Carpenter, Landis, Miike, et. al.)
Jackie Brown (expiring June 15)

Also:
Jandy’s DVD Triage
 


OTHER STUFF MENTIONED:
Pearl Harbor Trailer


NEXT WEEK:
Super 8


PRIVATE COMMENTS or QUESTIONS?
Leave your thoughts in the comment section below, or email us:
feedback@rowthree.com (general)
andrew.james@rowthree.com
kurt@rowthree.com

 

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Antho42
Guest

Midnight in Paris needs to pander — most people don’t know who these individuals are.

Kurt Halfyard
Admin

One person’s magic is another persons lazy. That Allen and company get all there is to say about ‘nostalgia’ out there in a couple scenes, the rest is just treading water in slow motion for most of the time.

What did you think of the Private Investigator thread and its resolution?

Antho42
Guest

Yeah, it was pretty good; I like films that incorporate magical realist elements.

Antho42
Guest

When is the new Movie Club Podcast going to be release?

rot
Guest

On Tree of Life, I hadn’t considered and kind of like Kurt’s notion that the endless summer (which is in fact disproportionately long in the film) might have some justification for its length in depicting the tension between the lived life and the tree of life. The myopic perception of the infinite through memory resists this being a God POV exercise… the spiritual is eluded to, the awesomeness of the universe are presented, but then MOST of the film is captured through the spectrum of one person’s memory… no matter how heady you want to get about the immensity of life, it gets filtered through the terrestrial act of living. I like the way the sun continually breaks through in the background of shots (this reminds me a lot of Silent Light actually how light itself feels like a cosmic force, bleeding around the characters that they are too blind to see as something revelatory).

You have the cosmic pov first, then the human, then perhaps where these two merge into grace. Still grief becomes the awakening to the cosmic, which is a curious arrangement, placing parenthesis around it, perhaps eluding that even that is subjective in a way. What comes first, man or God? I found it strange why it starts with the death, but it does make sense if you want to frame the cosmic ambiguously as neither subjective nor objective (Malick was a Heidegger fan, I could see this kind of philosophical musing on reality by him)

Antho42
Guest

“what we watched” naming contest:
The side dishes (orders)
or
The leftovers.

rot
Guest

Also begins with the quote of Job which if I remember right is about understanding the spiritual through living rather than in theory. The expectations, the pomp the circumstance, the facile sense of justice and righteousness must be torn asunder in order to get to the real revelation.

rot
Guest

…which is the Mother’s story as much as the child’s. The movie begins with HER grief, doesn’t it? She seems to be the Job of this story, yet from the child’s perspective she is perfect (we each find salvation in someone else?). She followed the rules of a 50’s mother, and yet the seed of corruption broke into her one child, while the other one died for no reason – she seems to be the one tested. To mix analogies, Sean Penn’s character is more like Judas, betraying his mother’s sanctity, not living up to the ideal that she represented. He begets the problems of his parents, which is I take it, the reasoning for calling it The Tree of Life. Suffering begets suffering, but is the suffering random or is there grace within it? It is the grace part I find hard to parse in the film.

Jandy Hardesty
Admin

There’s a tradition of Christianity (which I am in, incidentally), that believes strongly in God’s grace as mediated through other people – that we see grace expressed through the actions and love of people much more often and just as meaningfully (perhaps more meaningfully) as direct, individual spiritual experiences. Add in experiencing God through nature, and that’s what I felt from Tree of Life – that even though there’s this sense of the infinite and the spiritual throughout, it’s focused through the mother especially, but also the father and the other brothers. I realize that interpretation is colored by my own particular beliefs, but I felt it much more strongly than in films that actually purport to be “Christian.” That’s kind of a version of what you said, Mike, about understanding the spiritual through living, not theory. You get a more real understanding of the spiritual by living and loving and interacting with other people than by sitting alone and thinking about it – something that seems foreign to current understandings of “spiritual,” but that I think Malick has captured in some way.

Mike, there was an article I read a few days about about Malick and Heidegger – I don’t know enough about Heidegger to get it all, but it was interesting. http://notcoming.com/reviews/treeoflife/#

EDIT: Wrote this before your latest, Mike. Not addressing the mother-as-Job question, which is an interesting one that I haven’t thought about yet.

Antho42
Guest

“There’s a tradition of Christianity (which I am in, incidentally), that believes strongly in God’s grace as mediated through other people – that we see grace expressed through the actions and love of people much more often and just as meaningfully (perhaps more meaningfully) as direct, individual spiritual experiences.”

If that case, why do you even need God or religion?

Jandy Hardesty
Admin

In that way of thinking, Antho, grace doesn’t FROM other people, but THROUGH them – you still need God ultimately, but he usually works through people rather than directly. I don’t want to get into a religious debate, just wanted to express what I felt from the film.

rot
Guest

The creation stuff comes after a direct question from the mother, doesn’t it? I am starting to think that there is something deliberately subjective about it relating to the mother, and as Kurt mentioned, the notion of randomness or grace in the dinosaur scene. It feels part and parcel of the grief component of the film, and I have a hard time grasping how Sean Penn’s part plays into this (my problem with the flow again). The rewatch will help clean this up for me I think. Does Sean Penn even show up before the creation montage? I guess it has the duel function of being both the creation of the universe and the creation of the child, macro to micro (now it seems obvious!) and that is how it segues into the birth which begets its own dilemmas.

BTW I love the added touch with the dousing of DDT as a kind of sly remark on our hubris.

and Jandy, thanks for the article, first, I had no idea Malick lost his brother early in life, and second, I MUST buy his translation of Heidegger. I find the Heidegger I have read insanely difficult but fascinating. What seems facile on the surface of Tree of Life, I have no doubt, has some implication in philosophy deeper than most superficial readings allow.

Jandy Hardesty
Admin

I do think there’s some perspective-shifting going on in the film. The creation stuff, as you say, Mike, seems to be the POV of the mother, which kind of makes sense, since she’s the most tied in to the spiritual aspects of things. Then I think there’s both a Sean-Penn-looking-back POV and a Jack-as-a-boy POV that aren’t the same. Does Brad Pitt have one?

I should actually listen to the rest of the podcast, I only barely tapped the beginning of the review before I started doing other things. 🙂

Kurt Halfyard
Admin

I don’t hate the film, it panders to me like a MFer, but it is not without its charms, just that the schtick wears thin after a while, it gets its points across pretty much after the first act, then it dawdles its way to a sort of silly finish.

My negative reaction is more to everyone going gaga over this sort of film than because the film is badly made or whathaveyou. I will say again, Allen’s previous film says much of the same things, but far, far better.

Aaron
Guest

My entry for the “what we watched” naming contest: Cinema Sightings

Matt Gamble
Guest

“Analogous Add-on”

Goon
Guest

re: the ending of Seven
see
http://choice.ytmnd.com

Goon
Guest

I have now completed 6 episodes of Game of Thrones.

I thought the first episode was weird-good, then it was boring, then it got better, and I fell behind.

And everyone said how it picks up and gets crazy. I just finished episode 6. I’m bored again. Wayyyyyyy bored. These actors are pretty shitty and uncharismatic. At this point I’m only really in it when The Dink is on screen, and only he can carry this thing so far.

I have the rest of the eps so I may as well finish and see what’s up, but I really don’t see what has people so excited.

Henrik
Guest

“everyone said how”

You’re ruining shit for yourself man.

Jonathan
Admin

Goon, just finish it and then come back and discuss!

Goon
Guest

I finished Game of Thrones. The last few episodes were definitely another upswing, but overall I still give a resounding Meh to this series and don’t know if I’ll be back.

Kurt
Guest

Just got the entire set of S1 Game of Thrones. I plan on getting deep into this before FANTASIA hits.

Matt Gamble
Guest

Balls ddep?

Matt Gamble
Guest

Goddammit!

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