Monday, July 21, 2014

Breakdown of "Sex Tape" and "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes": Primates and Love-making Always Cause Great Dissension

This week on the Breakdown we have some dissenting reviews and a great deal of spirited debate. Scott and I don't agree on a few of the four 2014 released pictures being discussed. After the reviews, we take a look at Rotten Tomatoes impact on film criticism.

Podcast Outline:

00:55 Sex Tape review
19:16 Dawn of the Planet of the Apes review
37:53 Begin Again review
46:38 The Banshee Chapter review
56:39 The Rotten Tomatoes Effect
01:08:35 Review Rundown



Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Film Criticism Isn't Science, and Why a Critic's Opinion Can't Ever Actually be Wrong

I've had Rotten Tomatoes bookmarked on my web browser ever since I discovered it over a decade ago. It is a film site that has a collection of great writers and provides easy access to the top critics in North America. It is also provides a barometer for where a particular picture stands amongst the public and professional conscious. The site does have its issues, and the major one is how it has altered or at least encouraged a faulty perception of the actual purpose of film criticism. It has also been used to fuel many rage worthy comments in reviews when one critic dared to have a different view than the majority (or just the very vocal minority). I explore this issues in my latest Collective Publishing pop culture column, and I also try to explain the real purpose of film criticism (one major hint: it is very far from ever being objective).

Monday, July 14, 2014

The Breakdown of the 50th Episode: 10 Movies You Must See

We hit our 50th episodes of the Breakdown. To celebrate, Scott and I are picking10 movies we've previously reviewed on the podcast that we think you may not have yet watched, but really, really, really should. We select a wide collection of pictures ranging from foreign films to older classics to even some modern tentpoles. We serve up some great weekend viewing suggestions. 


Wednesday, July 09, 2014

In Defense of Michael Bay

If there is one way to make me dread a movie viewing experience, it is usually a title card letting me know the picture has been directed or produced by Michael Bay. If there is a bashing party for any of his pictures, I'm normally grabbing the bag of chips and ready to jump in. Recently, there has been a backlash against Bay over some of his recent comments and accusations that he doesn't respect his craft or see his movies as anything more than cash dispensers. Over at Collective Publishing, I jump to the defense of one of my least favourite directors.

Monday, July 07, 2014

Breakdown of 'Fantastic Voyage' & 'Stranger by the Lake': It is a Cinematic Exploration of the Human Body

Scott and I stayed away from the cinemas this week as none of the new releases could entice use to lumber out of our caves and into the fresh air. Instead, we have one of our most diverse podcasts as we'll be reviewing and discussing a sci-fi classic, a French erotic thriller, giant shark schlock, and Sofia Coppola's debut feature. We've got lots to debate and discuss on each picture along with the historical contexts and reflections on the impact of cinema that gives our show the added depth for the movie buff. We also look at the recent comments by Michael Bay that set Twitter ablaze.

Breakdown Outline:

01:12  Fantastic Voyage review
23:14  Stranger by the Lake review
39:06  Mega Shark vs. Mecha Shark review
52:12 The Virgin Suicides review
1:05:14 Michael Bay's Controversial Comments
1:20:38 Review rundown


Wednesday, July 02, 2014

'Community' Lives Again and Why this Changes TV



Remember when a cancellation meant the only way you'd ever get to see your TV show again is dragging out your dusty VHS tapes? Okay, I dated myself. The times have definitely changed in the last decade. Now, a cancellation of a cult hit just means the show may end up continuing new episodes on another channel or service. Community has been given the largely sought after sixth season after Yahoo Screen picked it up this week. While this is worthy of grand celebration, this event is a sign of a drastically changing TV landscape. In my latest Collective Publishing article, I analyze the future of television and how entertainment will be enjoyed over the next decade.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Breakdown of the First Half of 2014 Podcast: Proving Some Years That Great Movies Arrive Before the Fall

2014 has been a pretty strong year for movies so far. But the one downside of living in a smaller city and being over an hour away from Toronto (and even farther from TIFF Lightbox) I wasn't able to catch a lot of the high quality independent pictures that arrived in cinemas this year. Despite that, I still caught some smaller movies but also there was a surprisingly strong selection of mainstream fare. This week on the podcast, Scott and I both list our top five pictures of the year, also hand out some awards, and then look ahead to what is worth getting excited for in the second half of the year.

Podcast Outline: 

1:03  Most Memorable Cameo
5:50  Best Scene 
10:57 Biggest Delightful Surprise
18:47 Stand-out Leading Performance
32:06 Best Underrated/Little Known Picture
43:10 Most Disappointing/Worst Picture
50:27 Top Five Pictures of the First Half of the Year
1:20:42 Most Anticipated Pictures



Correction: When talking about Boyhood, I mention Robin Wright when she isn't even in the movie. I should have mentioned and would have mentioned if not for the embarrassing brainfart that Patricia Arquette plays the mother.  While I have you here, Ellar Coltrane stars as the boy whose name is Mason.