FilmspottingAuthor: Filmspotting
24 Apr 2019


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Weekly film podcast and WBEZ radio show from Chicago featuring in-depth reviews, top 5 lists and interviews. Hosted by Adam Kempenaar and Josh Larsen.

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    #725: Her Smell / Donen #1 - On the Town

    In Alex Ross Perry's HER SMELL, Elisabeth Moss gives a performance that, for Adam and Josh, evokes Gena Rowlands' iconic work in "A Woman Under the Influence" and a punk-rock Lady Macbeth. Moss's Becky Something is the drug-addled, manic and abusive lead singer of a '90s-era rock band that's fallen on hard times. It's also, according to Adam, the best film of the year so far.

    Also on the show: 1949's ON THE TOWN, the first in a four-film Stanley Donen Marathon. Plus, Josh's report from this year's Ebert Interruptus.

    0:00-1:07 - Billboard
    1:07-26:13 - Review: "Her Smell"
    26:37-38:17 - Spoilers: "Her Smell"
    On the Town, "On the Town"
    38:58-39:45 - Donations
    39:45-53:07 - Next week / Ebert Interruptus / Notes
    53:07-55:28 - Massacre Theatre
    55:28-1:18:46 - Donen #1: "On the Town"
    1:18:46-1:21:31 - Close    

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  • Posted on 19 Apr 2019

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    #724: Claire Denis / High Life / Madness Champ

    The 70 year-old French director of "Beau Travail," "35 Shots of Rum" and last year's "Let the Sunshine In" is having a moment. After 30 years of critically-acclaimed work, Claire Denis remains largely unknown in the U.S. That could change with her latest, HIGH LIFE, an existential sci-fi film starring Robert Pattinson and Juliette Binoche. Denis was in Chicago for a recent screening of the film, giving Adam and guest host Scott Tobias a rare chance to sit down with Denis and talk about how "High Life" fits into her sensuous and provocative body of work and how, among other things, Stephen Hawking's writing contributed to the universe she created on screen. She also plays along with the Filmspotting Five, where she admits to loving ok-maybe-not-your-least-favorite-Wes-Anderson-movie-but-few-people's-favorite (not even Josh's).

    Also on the show: Adam and Scott join the chorus of critics - and moviegoers - who have found themselves surprisingly charmed by the DCEU's SHAZAM. Plus, the crowning of the 2019 Filmspotting Madness champion.

    0:00-1:17 - Billboard
    1:17-28:22 - Interview: Claire Denis
    Bad Bad Hats, "Wide Right"
    29:04-32:53 - Next week / Notes
    32:53-48:48 - Madness: Champion / Polls
    48:48-55:56 - Review: "Shazam"
    Bad Bad Hats, "Dunno Why"
    56:49-1:15:08 - Review: "High Life"
    1:15:08-1:19:00 - Close 

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  • Posted on 12 Apr 2019

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    #723: Top 5 Overlooked Films of the 2000s / Madness Final / Assassination of Jesse James

    As the 2019 edition of Filmspotting Madness comes to a close, Adam and Josh share some favorite titles that didn't make the 64-film bracket. Their Top 5 Overlooked Films of the 2000s features some under-seen comedies starring Jack Black, Seann William Scott and Mark Duplass; docs and "docu-fantasias" from Steve James and Guy Maddin; and less familiar titles from A-list directors like Ridley Scott and Robert Zemeckis. Plus, the Madness championship matchup is revealed, and a Sacred Cow review of Andrew Dominik's 2007 meditative western THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD.

    0:00-1:16 - Billboard
    1:16-39:11 - Review: "Assassination of Jesse James..."
    Hembree, "Culture"
    39:53-49:48 - R.I.P Agnes Varda / Next week / Notes
    49:48-1:02:52 - Madness: Final 4 Results / Championship
    Hembree, "Almost"
    1:03:35-1:07:31 - Donations
    1:07:31-1:54:22 - Top 5: Overlooked Movies of the 2000s
    1:54:22-1:58:22 - Close

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  • Posted on 05 Apr 2019

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    #722: Dumbo / Final 4 Madness / Top 5 Movie Circus Acts

    Big Top Tim Burton remakes the Disney classic.

    With Adam out of town, Michael Phillips joins Josh for a review of the new DUMBO, plus Filmspotting Madness Final 4 matchups and the Top 5 Movie Circus Acts. Also, Michael shares thoughts on HOTEL MUMBAI, and Josh has 2019's first Golden Brick recommendation: A.T. White's STARFISH.

    0:00-1:08 - Billboard
    1:08-27:30 - Review: "Dumbo"
    Betty Noyes, "Baby Mine"
    28:11-32:43 - Next week / Notes
    32:43-36:10 - Michael on "Hotel Mumbai"
    36:10-38:21 - Josh recommends: "Starfish"
    38:21-47:40 - Madness: Elite 8 Results / Final 4
    David Bromberg, "Sharon"
    48:38-1:21:02 - Top 5: Movie Circus Acts
    1:21:02-1:24:17 - Close

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  • Posted on 29 Mar 2019

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    #721: Us / Elite 8 Madness / Cassavetes #4 - Opening Night

    Jordan Peele is not done scaring us.

    Peele's "Get Out" was one of the defining films of 2017. A huge box office success early in the year, it went on to be nominated for Best Picture, and won Peele an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. So if that’s your directing debut... how exactly do you follow that up? With US, Peele sticks with horror and proves that his talent for juggling scares with comedy and social commentary was no fluke. Adam and Josh talk about Peele's mastery of horror craft and his film's stellar cast, in particular Lupita Nyong'o as a trauma survivor whose family becomes the target of a home invasion. And if you've seen the film, stick around for an extended SPOILER conversation about US.

    Also on the show: Filmspotting Madness Best of the 2000s Sweet 16 results and Elite 8 matchups; the final film in the John Cassavetes Marathon (1977's OPENING NIGHT); and "The Blue Hats," the Cassavetes Marathon Awards.         

    0:00-1:05 - Billboard
    1:05-21:02 - Review: "Us"
    21:02-42:07 - Spoilers: "Us"
    Karen O and Dangermouse, "Turn The Light"
    43:02-48:57 - Next week / Notes
    48:57-1:08:10 - Madness: Sweet 16 Results / Elite 8
    Le Tigre, "What's Your Take On Cassavetes"
    1:03:37-1:27:59 - Cassavetes #4 - "Opening Night"
    1:27:59-1:55:12 - Cassavetes Awards 
    1:55:12-1:57:27 - Close

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  • Posted on 22 Mar 2019


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