“Gunda”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: June 18th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

Oh my, how I’ve missed it.

Sitting in a real movie theater.

Watching a film on a big screen.

With a real sound system.

No popcorn, yet, but still . . .

I made it to the lovely intimate theater at the Speed Museum to watch this universally heralded documentary about, of all things, farm animals.

Though it’s come and gone from the theater, it’s worth checking out when it streams.

Do not be put off by the quirky subject matter. “Gunda” is as evocative as it is visually and aurally exquisite.

For more on the film, and the totality of the circumstance, listen to my podcast below:

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“Johnny Guitar” & “Trading Places”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: June 7th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

Yes, there are totally legitimate reasons, other than mere convenience, why I am reviewing these two totally different movies together.

At least in my mind.

Mainly because I watched them back to back the other night. For reasons which I actually do explain in my most boffo podcast below.

Also contained therein is actual talk about the flicks themselves.

One, a sort of psychological 1954 western featuring Joan Crawford and Sterling Hayden.

The other, a silly and funny comedy, with a passel humorous folks, including Eddie Murphy, Jamie Lee Curtis and Dan Aykroyd. And the proverbial many, many more.

So, take a couple of minutes and listen:

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“Plan B”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: June 1st, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

The set up for this delightful and astutely observed teen comedy isn’t anything unique.

Sunny (Kuhoo Verma) thinks she might have gotten pregnant, when she lost her virginity, at a party she hosted, while her doting mother was out of town.

So she and her runnin’ podner, Lupe (Victoria Moroles), head off into the night in search of a Plan B Morning After pill.

Comedy and adventures forth come for the bright, engaging and often potty mouthed besties.

Lessons are learned.

“Plan B” is available at Hulu.

I was charmed.

For more info and insight, listen to the podcast below:

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— c d kaplan

“Gambit” & “Gambit”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: May 11th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

Remakes are always fascinating.

For me anyway. Since, as you might guess, watching films is one one of my addictions.

I like heist flicks. And I came upon an article about caper movies. Several of which I hadn’t seen. Or, frankly, heard of.

Like “Gambit” from the early 60s, starring Shirley MacLaine and Michael Caine.

But, when I went to the interweb for more info, what popped up was a remake from ’12, starring Cameron Diaz and Colin Firth. And written by the Brothers Coen, Joel and Ethan.

I power watched them both on Amazon Prime on the same day. (What I do for my not so adoring public.)

My take?

Listen to my podcast:

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“Nomadland”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: May 4th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

I guess I could have watched “Nomadland” well before it won so many awards.

Oscars. Golden Globes. BAFTAs.

But I didn’t.

I certainly had a sense of how stark a contemplation it proved to be. And, frankly, needed during the year long pandemic, pre-vaccine shutdown, a smidge more entertaining escapism during my viewing hours.

The film is dry. And evocative of these strange, plate-shifting times. But is it a metaphor?

It is often most touching. But, without a lot of humor, though it is filled with a sense of community and humanity.

For more observations on “Nomadland,” listen to my podcast below:

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“Another Round”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: April 28th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

Thomas Vinterberg’s “Another Round” just won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. Or, whatever they call that category.

It is the story of four high school teachers, all mired in one form of “mid life crisis” or another, who decide to test out an actually posited theory that people should maintain a blood alcohol level of .05, to be more productive, happy, etc, etc.

Each gets positive results in the initial stages of their daily imbibing. So they kick it up a notch, then another.

There are consequences, but, as best I can tell, no lessons learned by the characters.

I just don’t get this movie.

Is it about systemic alcoholism in Denmark?

Is it actually a comedy as some critics believe? Could fool me.

Whatever. I simply don’t understand the accolades and awards.

For more details and perspective, listen to my podcast below:


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“Sound of Metal”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: April 20th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

Riz Ahmed, whom you might remember from the TV series, “The Night Of,” plays Ruben, a recovering addict who is the drummer in a thrash metal duo with his girlfriend Lu, portrayed by Olivia Cooke.

After the set up of their career, such as it is, and their tender relationship, he discovers he’s losing his hearing, and then becomes deaf.

He ends up in a rural haven for the hearing impaired, who are also recovering from substance abuse.

Ahmed brilliantly portrays his character, who somewhat acclimates to his situation, but also longs to continue his life as it was with Lu.

Given the subject matter, much of the movie is silent. Yet Ahmed deftly expresses his emotions through his face and eyes and body language and demeanor.

The actor’s performance is truly worthy of the nomination he’s received for Best Actor statuette.

For considerably more information, and my take on the movie, listen to the podcast below.

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“Statues, This is What We Stand For?”: Film Review/ Preview

Posted: April 13th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

In these current, too contentious times, when society seems to be questioning, oh everything, public monuments, public art and statues are being especially scrutinized.

They have become flash points for societal discourse.

Eminent Louisville documentarian Morgan Atkinson examines the whole phenomenon in his expertly crafted effort, “Statues, This is what We Stand For?”

The one hour film airs on KET this coming Monday, April 19. And will stream after that at Facebook Premiere.

Make a note to watch. It will be well worth your time.

For significantly more information about this entertaining and illuminating documentary, listen to my podcast below.

(It will also be worth five minutes of your time, even though my hackneyed diction adds a “t” at the end of my pronunciation of  the word “statues” a couple of times.)

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“The Dig”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: March 25th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

After a year of spending too much time indoors, isolated, the idea of trekking about the countryside fascinates.

So I was taken by this essentially true tale of the discovery of the Sutton Hoo artifacts.

Which takes place in the British countryside, at the manor of one Edith Pretty, portrayed by Carey Mulligan.

She hires an excavator, played by Ralph Fiennes, to see what’s in the mounds on her property.

It is 1939, and WWII is looming.

For many of the reasons, why you might wish to check this out at Netflix, listen to my podcast below.


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“McCabe & Mrs. Miller: Film Review Podcast

Posted: March 18th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

Here’s the truth, my cinema loving readers and listeners.

Rare is the film as iconic as this Robert Altman classic.

Star of stars Warren Beatty as the former gunslinger come to the dank mining town of the Pacific Northwest to open a saloon, gambling hall, hotel of sorts, and brothel.

Star of stars Julie Christie as the woman who convinces him to let her be the madame of the house of ill repute.

The third major character is Vilmos Zsigmond’s genius, evocative cinematography.

Then there’s Leonard Cohen’s spot on soundtrack.

Altman was an auteur a cut way above most. This is his best creation.

It’s available to stream at Amazon Prime for a few bucks.

For more reasons why you should do so, even if you saw it when released a half century ago, listen to my podcast below.

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“Coming 2 America”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: March 13th, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | 2 Comments »

There are oh so many things in our lives, especially in these strange times, that are absolutely unnecessary, provide little to no nutritional value of any sort, but which bring a smile, grant us a moment or two of escape, and which we therefore simply savor.

Like the frivolous remake that is “Coming 2 America.”

Prince Akeem (Eddie Murphy) and his runnin’ podner Semmi (Arsenio Hall) have to travel again from their home country of Zamunda to NYC.

For reasons that I shall not explain. Because, hey, I wouldn’t want to spoil it for you.

As if that matters in this singing, dancing, sometimes snarky, sometimes too sweet piffle of a flick.

This movie is of no consequence whatsoever. But it made me smile. I’m glad I streamed it on Netflix.

For more info, listen to my podcast:

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“What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael”: Film Review Podcast

Posted: March 3rd, 2021 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

So, anybody these days who feigns as I do being a movie critic owes a debt of gratitude to the force that was Pauline Kael, the once and always doyenne of film criticism.

Ms. Kael reigned supreme from the time of her review of “Bonnie and Clyde” in The New Yorker in ’67, until well after her retirement there, more than a decade later.

Her influence lives on.

She was articulate, acerbic, intentionally antagonistic, and always interesting. She raised reviews to a form of craft.

She was loathed as much if not more than she was loved. But her importance cannot be denied.

Rob Garver’s far from perfect, and occasionally confusing documentary is relatively even handed.

It may be of interest only to the most inveterate of cinephiles. It certainly was to me.

The film can be streamed at Amazon Prime.

For more information, listen to my podcast below:

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