The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

August 25, 2017
[School of Movies 2017]
This was a commission from Chris Finik and turned out to be one of our most challenging shows. I was ill and having to energise myself on sugar, caffeine and enthusiasm while painkillers did their work, but more specifically we were dealing with a movie that is on the surface a silly mess, unlovable and mostly forgotten. We had to find the elements of quality in a mismanaged, overambitious yet underachieving project which ended the careers of a promising director (Stephen Norrington, the man behind Blade and little else) and a legendary actor, Shaun Connery. 

Also we haven't seen most of the rest of the cast in the interim years either, but that's what happens when you throw 22% of your budget ($17 million) at one actor and find yourself short on what is obviously an ensemble film. This also serves as a weirdly specific prototype for Marvel's Avengers movie which came out nine years later in 2012. 

So join us for ourr 199th movie covered as we go on a voyage with these men who aren't very extraoriary, certainly not gentle and the best of their number is a woman (notably the only person in the film without a Y-chromasome.) 

Next week, something far, far more accomplished; Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

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Book of Life

August 18, 2017
[School of Movies 2017]

A little-seen animated film from 2014, produced by Guillermo del Toro, directed by Jorge Gutierrez, the man behind the award-winning show El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera. This is a celebration of mexican culture, centred around the Day of the Dead, and the Lands of the Remembered and the Forgotten, as much about life as it is about death, and dealing with ancient gods making wagers with one another over the actions of humans. 

Masquerading as a cute, colourful, hyperactive, kid's movie, this in fact has more in common with the work of LAIKA, and slowly, over time, introduces more and more texture and personal touches from its creators who strove to make the art match their beautiful concept work. 

A commission by Abel Savard, who encouraged us with his supporting of this episode to dig deeper and find something really rather wonderful. 

Next week; The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. 

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Donnie Darko

August 11, 2017

[School of Movies 2017]

Prepare for a twisting, mind-bending journey into a tangent universe and back again as we tackle one of the most head-scratchy of cult films of the 2000s. Directed by Richard Kelly when he was only 26 years old and accompanied by an extensive website filled with extra reading to help you understand what goes on in the movie, this is still pretty difficulty to completely grasp, even if you've seen it. So we spend the first half of this show examining those explanations and the second half delving into the stronger, clearer elements like character, music and script. 

This was a commissioned show by Jesse Ferguson, who wanted to like this movie, despite itself, and decided to have us make a case for it.

Next week; Book of Life.

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To the Moon

August 4, 2017

[School of Everything Else 2017]

A five hour, retro RPG with a story that will stay with you. We recommend everyone play the game before listening. 

It's kind of like a fun Inception.

Laura Kate Dale joins us for a very textured, emotional and personal discussion about this extraordinary experience. 

This show was commissioned by Emanuel Matius, Sean Lyons Burke and Nick Grugin. Patreon supporters at the five dollar level can enjoy a bonus re-release of the episode of Do try This At Home that Sharon recorded in 2013, on this same game. 

Next week; Donnie Darko.

Guest:

Laura Kate Dale of Let's Play Video Games

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