Shut Up and Watch This
#83: My Fair Lady (1964)

#83: My Fair Lady (1964)

February 16, 2022

Dave has missed out on a good number of the musical spectacular films from the mid-twentieth century. And maybe it’s not such a loss to miss out on OKLAHOMA or HELLO, DOLLY and the like, but there is something interesting about MY FAIR LADY. Maybe it is the classical subject matter by way of a George Bernard Shaw play, Audrey Hepburn’s charming performance as Eliza or Rex Harrison’s odd talk-singing. And sure, the gender politics are a little dated, but there is something delightful about a man, once again, learning that when he tries to make someone in his image, that someone is going to have a mind of their own.

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© 2022 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#82: Kieslowski’s Three Colors Trilogy (1993-1994)

#82: Kieslowski’s Three Colors Trilogy (1993-1994)

January 21, 2022

If you’re like Ashley, you have probably seen the posters for the THREE COLORS TRILOGY floating around video stores, movie theaters or dorm rooms most of your life. But maybe, also like Ashley, you have never quite gotten around to seeing what BLUE, WHITE and RED are all about. And maybe the words “Polish,” “Independent,” “Film” don’t have you rushing out to plug the holes in your film knowledge. But Ashley (and maybe you also) has been remiss in seeing these very watchable and moving films. Go watch them and then unpack them here with us.

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© 2022 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#81: Enter the Dragon (1973)

#81: Enter the Dragon (1973)

January 6, 2022

Here it is: the ultimate podcast about the greatest martial arts film of all time. Wilson, Carr and Lee (Bruce Lee) give it to you straight. In this episode, we discuss ENTER THE DRAGON, Bruce Lee’s entrance into the American film industry and the last film completed before his untimely death. We can’t get enough of Bruce Lee as star, co-writer and fight choreographer. But this film has more to offer, most notably an intense fight scene featuring the talented Angela Mao. Along the way, we also share our love for Lee's exuberant, offbeat directorial debut, THE WAY OF THE DRAGON (1972).

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© 2022 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#80: Fish Tank (2009)

#80: Fish Tank (2009)

December 13, 2021

Many films tell stories of people who when put in precarious situations are miraculously able pull themselves out at the last second. Andrea Arnold’s FISH TANK doesn’t attempt this kind of cliched hero’s journey. Here the danger to 15 year-old Mia (Katie Jarvis) is real and hope takes the form of the freedom offered by a boy and his car. And yet in spite of this more subdued take on storytelling, this film is a joy to watch. We root for Mia to find her way up, out, or away, to create something different for herself. Hope comes from possibility and freedom, despite circumstances.

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© 2021 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#79: What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)

#79: What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)

October 27, 2021

Just in time for Halloween we have something a little creepy, a little campy, and a whole lot disturbing. WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE? quickly became a cult favorite in large part due to Bette Davis’s unhinged performance as aging former child star Baby Jane Hudson caring for her disabled sister Blanche (Joan Crawford). Hugely influential in popular culture, Baby Jane has been imitated and parodied countless times. But there is something about this film that rises above its cult-camp reputation. There is real pain and terror and mental illness here that leaves us unsure whether to laugh or cry or cringe.

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© 2021 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#78: Mona Lisa (1986)

#78: Mona Lisa (1986)

September 18, 2021

This week we travel to gritty 80’s London via Neil Jordan’s MONA LISA. Our hero is the elegant and inscrutable Simone (Cathy Tyson), a high end call girl who has gained a degree of independence in her work. Our narrator is her driver/bodyguard George (Bob Hoskins), recently released from prison, who is looking to reconnect with his estranged daughter. George wears his heart on his sleeve, and Simone never shows her hand, but they are (maybe) able to find some degree of connection in spite of complicated circumstances.

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© 2021 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#77: Mildred Pierce (1945)

#77: Mildred Pierce (1945)

August 25, 2021

Is it noir? Is it a woman’s picture? Why not both? On this week's episode we talk MILDRED PIERCE. Joan Crawford is the hardest working woman in the greater Los Angeles area, at least. She cooks, she cleans, she founds a successful chain of mid-range restaurants through a series of increasingly strange real estate maneuvers, all while raising two daughters and fielding advances from various contemptible men. Maybe you can have it all! Actually, maybe not.

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© 2021 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#76: The Conformist (1970)

#76: The Conformist (1970)

July 7, 2021

In the words of noted 90s philosopher, Jack Handey, “If you ever discover that what you're seeing is a play within a play, just slow down, take a deep breath, and hold on for the ride of your life.” Bertolucci’s 1970 classic THE CONFORMIST is similarly layered; a flashback within a fantasy within a frame story. Beyond the complex structure, this film is also rife with striking imagery, symbolism and camera movement. Dave and Ashley discuss how The Conformist has influenced generations of filmmakers from Coppola to Gerwig, plus how Freud ruins everything.

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© 2021 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#75: Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

#75: Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

June 18, 2021

Perhaps HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY is an odd choice considering our general weariness with sequels and franchises and Dave’s aversion to superhero films. But this is a different kind of sequel and Hellboy is a different kind of hero, and it doesn’t hurt to have Guillermo del Toro directing, too. Del Toro is clearly having a great time bringing all kinds of interesting and creepy creatures to life. This film is a whole lot of fun, proving that there is an exception to every rule even among the seemingly endless superhero movies.

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© 2021 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

#74: Ruthless People (1986)

#74: Ruthless People (1986)

May 27, 2021

This week’s pick is about some ruthless people and some not so ruthless people acting in some very ruthless ways, but also some not very ruthless ways. Danny DeVito, Bette Midler, Judge Reinhold and Supergirl star in RUTHLESS PEOPLE, a 1986 revenge comedy with a whole lot going on. We’ve got attempted murder, kidnapping, failed blackmail plots, a history of stereo retail sales practices, and an amazing house which is either a tribute to the Memphis style or a ruthless takedown of it.

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© 2021 Ashley Carr & Dave Wilson

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