Cinecast Archive Ready! (mostly)

We’ve gotten some requests lately (mostly by insane people that want to torture themselves) for access to the older Cinecasts. I’m happy to report that these are all now archived and available on the R3 servers; all the way back to Episode 1 (please don’t listen to that; it’s torturous for the listener and embarrassing for the host).

Way back when, before the Third Row was around, Kurt and Andrew (and occasionally Matt) got together at the old site of Movie Patron for early Cinecast movie reviews. When that site was deprecated, the Cinecast archive was still there along with download links to the shows and information on each shows. At some point in time, that site was forgotten about and eventually went down (when I stopped paying for it). When that happened, unfortunately all of the information disappeared along with it.

We’ve got a team of monkeys working around the clock…
– Andrew James

Today I re-uploaded all of the episodes to the “new” servers and created archive pages with episode numbers and download links to the mp3s. Unfortunately I lost all of the show notes for those early episodes (1-67). But thanks to listener ROLF(!) we do have quite a bit of information already and we’ve got a team of monkeys working around the clock to get that info into these archived pages (eventually).

In the meantime, there are two ways to access the archive:
1) Hit the podcast dropdown menu on the left of your screen or in the menu of your mobile browser and then choose Cinecast. Scroll all the way to the bottom of that screen (past all of the more current episodes) and then click on “archive.”

2) Click this link.

Good luck in your journey and thanks for listening!

Review: The Closer We Get

Director: Karen Guthrie
Screenplay by: Karen Guthrie
Starring: Ann Guthrie, Ian Guthrie, Karen Guthrie
Country: UK, Ethiopia
Running Time: 87 min
Year: 2015
BBFC Certificate: PG

I‘m very much a family man at heart. I obviously care greatly for my wife and kids (although I spend far too much time watching, reading and writing about films when I could be spending more time with them), but I’m also quite close to my extended family. I see my parents regularly and although my wife’s family and the rest of mine live further afield (mostly in different countries), we find time to visit them whenever possible and are always more than happy to see them. This may sound common and I’m sure it is, but many people grow distant from their family and know little about their aunts, uncles and cousins as they grow older. These days, more and more families are broken up too, fractured or made more complicated at least by divorce. Director Karen Guthrie’s family have an unusual history in which they seem to be simultaneously distant and close and she explores this in her documentary The Closer We Get.

Karen’s parents, Ann and Ian, fell in love, got married and rushed out four children in five years. Family life seemed pretty normal at first, but when the children were still young, Ian began to travel to Ethiopia to work (or volunteer, I missed that detail). This seemed admirable as the country needed support, but he would spend very long periods of time there, only returning once or twice a year for holidays, when he would often just take Ann away somewhere exotic. He just couldn’t seem to settle at home. This seeming lack of interest in family life, on top of a shocking revelation that I won’t reveal here, caused the couple to split, leaving the children with Ann.

In more recent years however, Ann suffered a devastating stroke which left her unable to care for herself. So her grown up children came back home to look after her. In an unexpected twist though, Ian also returned, after 15 years of divorce, to lend his support. Karen, who had been documenting aspects of her family life before the stroke, uses her probably vast amount of footage to craft a film that tries to find out just what happened between her parents and explore the unique dynamic now present in their family home.

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Cinecast Episode 453 – Neither and Both

From nothing to everything. The theaters had nothing good and now we’ve got so many things we can’t get to them all (alas no Pete’s Dragon or War Dogs). But we do give initial reports on Anthropoid and Hell or High Water – both to be investigated deeper on future installments of the Cinecast. For now, rest assured they are both great. But this week it’s all about Studio Laika releasing Kubo and the Two Strings… about an hour’s worth of discussion actually. We go back and forth a little bit about overall quality of the film, but we’re both in 100% agreement that all movie-goers should be opening their wallet for Laika. Starting now. Also our DePalma retrospective is winding down, but we jumped back 40+ years to see Margot Kidder and Margot Kidder star in Sisters. A couple of tacked on things to The Watch List for good measure as well.

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

We’re now available on Google Play!



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Sunday Video Essay: An Alternate History of New Zealand Cinema

After years of praising the wonderful Sam Neill documentary on New Zealand Cinema, Cinema of Unease, both on the Cinecast and beyond, I was exceptionally pleased when an astute Rowthree listener pointed out to me, the 2015 kind-of sequel (sidequel?) doc, Out of the Mist. This feature length documentary is certainly less personal than Neill’s survey and commentary, positioning itself in a more academic light; but it plays out far more like a feature length video essay. If you catch my meaning, it has the air of a Marc Cousins style approach to New Zealand representing itself onscreen.

What pleases me most about this new film is the devotion to the not-heralded-enough filmmaker, Vincent Ward (the one thing Out of the Mist does have in common with Neill’s doc – and if this is what the two will agree on, I am happy for that!)

Director Tim Wong and narrator Eleanor Catton offer some rewarding off-the-beaten-path digressions, such as George Rose’s Time is a Spider, Annie Goldson’s Wake, and Kathy Dudding’s Asylum Pieces – it is notable that none of these three films from the 80s, 90s and 2010 are even on the IMDB.)

Friday One Sheet(s): Sisters

It’s a slow and uninteresting week in movie posters this week. And did you know that the Row Three Cinecast has been doing discussions on Brian De Palma films all summer? This coming week will focus on 1973’s Siamese Twin Split-Screen Psychological Horror Picture, Sisters. So I give you some of the marvelous international posters for the film. Above is the lurid pulp novel styled one from Italy. Below the fold are some of the even more provocative and naughtier ones from Thailand, Germany and other countries.

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After the Hype #153 – Paranorman



Boo! We’re joined by Mackenzie Peykov this week to talk about the amazing Laika film – PARANORMAN! There’s so much to talk about with this one, from Casey Affleck’s delightfully dumb Mitch to that ending confrontation that goes darker than anything we’ve seen in a kid’s film of late. You won’t want to miss this spectacular and spooky episode!


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After the Credits Episode 195: Littlest Hobo Media Spew – July

Give us more!

Give us more!

It doesn’t happen very often but on this month’s episode of the Media Spew, we all happened to watch the same show. Yes, as with everyone else, Colleen, Dale (Letterboxd) and I (Letterboxd) all manged to get sucked into the cult of “Stranger Things.”

Aside from Netflix, we also caught up with a great assortment of movies, both new and old. Listen in for all the goodness!

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Cinecast Episode 452 – Too Much Pole Vaulting

Due to sleep deprivation for both of your humble hosts, neither were able to get the flicker house this week for a “new” review. However, DePalma is always accessible and we spend a good deal of time trying to figure out what the hell he was thinking by essentially doing a more sprawling version of Carrie with THE FURY just one year after wrapping up Carrie. Both this decision and the film itself is baffling – but ripe for body explosion and pole vaulting conversation. The Watch List is kind of all over the place as well. It includes book and video game talk as well as “Michael Bay isn’t that bad” conversation and a duplicate title from 1975 that you won’t ever find. Oh yeah, and Leland Orser takes the lead!

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

We’re now available on Google Play!



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DVD Review: Stalker

Director: Andrei Tarkovsky
Screenplay by: Arkadiy Strugatskiy, Boris Strugatskiy, Andrei Tarkovsky (uncredited)
Based on a Novel by: Arkadiy Strugatskiy, Boris Strugatskiy
Starring: Aleksandr Kaydanovskiy, Anatoliy Solonitsyn, Nikolay Grinko, Alisa Freyndlikh
Country: Soviet Union
Running Time: 155 min
Year: 1979
BBFC Certificate: PG

My trip through the work of art-house/world cinema heavyweight Andrei Tarkovsky continues with Stalker, from 1979. Like Solaris, this is one of his films I was simultaneously most looking forward to and most wary of. It’s highly regarded (as are all of his films) which got me interested, on top of the sci-fi focus, but it also sounded like it might be the slowest moving and most bleak title of his oeuvre. So, although I had no doubt that I wanted to watch and review the film, I was a bit hesitant to put it on once I’d received the screener. As is too often the case these days (due to having two young children) I was far too tired to take on such a heavy film and ended up watching it in two parts, but I made it through though and managed to appreciate the extraordinary work Tarkovsky had done.

Stalker is set some time in the future when a large area of the country (presumably somewhere in The Soviet Union) has been cordoned off with barbed wire and armed defences. Known only as The Zone, this area is off-limits to everyone and believed to be highly dangerous. Gifted individuals known as Stalkers have special abilities to be able to navigate it though, to take people to what is special about The Zone, The Room. The Room is believed to be a place that can make true the inner most desire of those who enter. Our protagonist is an unnamed Stalker (Aleksandr Kaydanovskiy), who has been hired to guide The Writer (Anatoliy Solonitsyn) and The Professor (Nikolay Grinko) to The Room. As they make the long, treacherous journey out of the city and across The Zone, the three of them argue about the meaning of their lives and the importance of faith, among other things, culminating in a dilemma as they reach the threshold of The Room.

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