Movie Podcast Weekly Ep. 114: Horrible Bosses 2 (2014) and The Overnighters (2014) and Penguins of Madagascar (2014) and Meet the Mormons (2014) and the Star Wars Ep. VII Teaser Trailer

Episode 114

There has been an awakening. Have you felt it? The Dark Side and the Light.

In Episode 114, your Movie Podcast Weekly hosts welcome special guest Jedi Master Steve Hernandez to help us discuss the Star Wars Ep. VII teaser trailer. Next we bring you our famous Mini Reviews, as well as four Feature Reviews for Horrible Bosses 2 and The Overnighters and Penguins of Madagascar and Meet the Mormons. Join us!

If you like what you hear, leave us a review in iTunes or leave a donation through our PayPal buttons or both! Above all, subscribe for free in iTunes.

If you’re new to our show… Movie Podcast Weekly typically features four hosts — Jason, Andy, Karl and Josh — along with frequent guests. We give you our verdicts on at least one new movie release from the current year that’s currently playing in theaters or on VOD, as well as several mini reviews of whatever we’ve been watching lately. And we usually provide specialized genre recommendations. New episodes release every single Tuesday. Join us!


SHOW NOTES:

I. Introduction
— Sorry MPW Ep. 113 was so late; don’t overlook it!
— Welcome special guest Steve Hernandez


[ 0:03:07 ] II. Responding to the Star Wars Ep. VII teaser trailer:
— George Lucas pitched Ep. VII to Mark Hamill in the ’80s


[ 0:46:14 ] III. Mini Reviews
Karl: Planes, Trains and Automobiles; Miracle on 34th Street (1947); Interstellar (for a fourth viewing!)
Josh: Force Majeure, We Are the Best!, Dexter Season 3, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Uganda Be Kidding Me Live, Milius
Andy: Sherlock (through Season 3), License to Kill, A Night in Old Mexico
Jason: A Christmas Story; Silent Night, Deadly Night 3: Better Watch Out!; Multiplicity; Maleficent; Horrible Bosses


IV. What’s New in Theaters This Past Weekend
Horrible Bosses 2
Penguins of Madagascar
The Imitation Game
Before I Disappear
Remote Area Medical
Antarctica: A Year on Ice
The Babadook


FEATURE REVIEWS HAVE TIME STAMPS:

[ 1:29:07 ] V. Feature Review: HORRIBLE BOSSES 2 (2014)
Jason = 6.5 ( Rental )


[ 1:35:45 ] VI. Feature Review: THE OVERNIGHTERS (2014)
Josh = 9 ( Theater / Buy it! )


[ 1:45:53 ] VII. Feature Review: PENGUINS OF MADAGASCAR (2014)
Andy = 8 ( Theater / Buy it! )
Evvie = 9 ( Theater / Buy it! )


[ 1:53:01 ] VIII. Feature Review: MEET THE MORMONS (2014)
Jason = 7 ( Theater / Rental )
Natalie Pyles = 9 ( Theater / Buy it! )

— Josh says check out “Duck Beach to Eternity” on Hulu Plus or on Amazon Prime.


[ 2:11:35 ] IX. “PREVIOUSLY ON SURVIVOR” WITH SURVIVOR JOSH
— Josh talks Survivor: San Juan Del Sur (Blood vs. Water 2) with fellow Survivor Super-Fan Cody Clark


[ 2:18:49 ] X. Miscellany:
— iTunes review from Dino-Machino (Thank you!)
— Thanks to Juan for his continued recurring donation!
— Thanks to Jenifer for her generous purchase of our MPW “Love Actually” commentary!
— Thanks to Stephanie for purchasing our MPW “Planes, Trains and Automobiles” commentary!
— Don’t miss the MPW Top 10 Best of 2014 Wrap-Up, which will be Episode 118, releasing on Tuesday, December 30, 2014!
— The “Jurassic World” trailer


XI. Wrap-Up / Plugs / Ending


COMING UP ON MPW NEXT WEEK:
THE PYRAMID and THE BABDOOK and BEFORE I DISAPPEAR and COMET and THE INTERNET’S OWN BOY, with special guest: Jape Man! — Join us!


LINKS FOR THIS EPISODE:

Contact MPW:
E-mail us: MoviePodcastWeekly@gmail.com.
Leave us a voicemail: (801) 382-8789.
Follow MPW on Twitter: @MovieCastWeekly
Leave a comment in the show notes for this episode.

Listen to MPW:
Add MPW to your Stitcher playlist: Stitcher.com
MPW on iTunes
MPW’s RSS feed
Right-click to download the MPW 100 Rap

Josh’s links:
Twitter: @IcarusArts
Josh covers streaming movies on: Movie Stream Cast

If you’re a Horror fan, listen to Jason and Josh on HORROR MOVIE PODCAST

We’d like to thank The Dave Eaton Element and Dave himself for the use of his music for our theme song. Buy Dave’s Eaton’s music: BandCamp.com


If you like Movie Podcast Weekly, please subscribe and leave us a review in iTunes. If you want to support the show, we have PayPal buttons in our right-hand sidebar where you can make a one-time donation or you can become a recurring donor for just $2 per month. (Every little bit helps!)

Thanks for listening, and join us again next Tuesday for Movie Podcast Weekly.


59 thoughts on “Movie Podcast Weekly Ep. 114: Horrible Bosses 2 (2014) and The Overnighters (2014) and Penguins of Madagascar (2014) and Meet the Mormons (2014) and the Star Wars Ep. VII Teaser Trailer

  1. With regards to the new Star Wars movies I’ve heard pretty much the same as Josh in that they’re putting everything in the expanded universe into it’s own canon (which I think they’re calling Star Wars Legends) that is separate and unrelated to the film series. So all the rumours about Luke turning to the Darkside and The Emperor being cloned (which are both taken from the Dark Empire comic series) and any others based on the expanded universe are probably pretty unlikely to be accurate.

  2. And Josh, when it comes to Dexter I highly recommend you persevere until the end of season 4 which is the best season of the show by a huge stretch. John Lithgow plays the main antagonist known as the “Trinity Killer” and he is absolutely chilling. The rest of the series I can take or leave but that season is definitely its peak.

  3. Also with regards to Karl’s qualms about them still using the same ships in The Force Awakens trailer and the technology not progressing; I think that after such an immense conflict the victorious but fairly ragtag Rebellion would suffer from a long period of struggling with limited resources and trying to clean up the mess. To me it doesn’t seem far fetched that they’d still be making use of whatever technology they’ve got kicking around, old or new. I mean in the original trilogy the Millenium Falcon is already an old, outdated ship (though outfitted with some custom modifications) but it’s still chosen by the rebels to lead the attack on the second Death Star in Return of the Jedi. Also in real life don’t forces even as organised and huge as the US Navy still use decade old aircraft carriers and things? I guess sometimes maybe it’s cheaper to maintain and modify vessels than simply chuck them away and start from scratch?

    And I’m guessing that the intent behind this trailer was to try and erase the haunting memories of the prequel trilogy and impress upon the audience that these new films are going to be much more in line with the original saga so it makes sense that the images and tech they’d choose to show here would be cherry-picked to back up that approach. There’s so little context to these few, short sequences that we can probably assume that we will see some less familiar designs in the film itself.

    Personally I think this is an extremely promising trailer. I’m a little bugged that the Falcon looks CGI (the original model Falcon never looked anything other than awesome and believable to me) but it’s not egregious or cheap looking and it appears that there are more actual sets and props in this few seconds of footage than in the entirety of the last two prequel movies. Those films ended up just feeling flat and lifeless to me because so much of them was just actors in front of a green-screen and the backdrops always seemed overly polished and cartoonish whereas these landscapes look gritty and realistic .And the Stormtroopers don’t look like something out of a video game. And that ball-droid didn’t bother me at all. Come on, in the original film there are those little mouse-droids on the Death Star that drive away with a frightened squeak when Chewie growls at them. There’s always been little cute/comedic things in this franchise, it just sucked in the prequels when George Lucas made it totally obnoxious and tonal schizophrenic.

    Anyway, I think that’s all I have to say on the issue for now. Sorry for three comments in a row guys!

    • I agree with Josh and David. I thought it was a great teaser trailer and it got me super excited. I don’t agree at all with Karl’s complaints, but I see where he’s coming from. Now Jay is totally wrong about the little robot. That little guy is super cool—I wouldn’t worry about him. And guys, no green screen backgrounds! Come on, that’s gotta be a good thing, right?

      • And I love the light saber. You guys are insane. It looks so badass and it makes total sense. Why would the bad guys get a smooth looking lightsaber when they can get one with jagged edges that actually looks menacing and even more powerful than a regular looking one. And I’m ok with the lightsaber having a crossguard. Visually, I think it’s a great addition. But I’ll be a lot happier with it if they put it to good use.

        • I have a feeling that a lot of the people complaining about the lightsaber are remembering how cool they thought the Darth Maul lightsaber was when it was shown in the Episode 1 trailer and how crappy that movie turned out to be. Any kind of gimmicky lightsaber probably carries with it those negative connotations now.

          Personally I could take it or leave it but what really struck me about that scene was the cool wintry forest setting which had so much more atmosphere than any of the backdrops from the prequels.

          • Yes! I 100% agree. Though I have to say that the lightsaber took it to the next level. Anyway, that scene that you spoke of reminds me a bit of the wolf scene from 300.

    • Seriously awesome new “Star Wars” teaser. David, I gotta disagree: I think the Falcon looks GREAT. I don’t know how they filmed the scene in the trailer, but if they built a 1:1 model of the ship for use in the movie, then I gotta assume they’re using smaller models for at least some of the flight scenes. (Also: Who else noticed the lens flare in that loop maneuver. Gotta love J.J.)

      I love the sense of mystery, and I’m totally with Josh on the throwback vibe and visuals. This is how “Star Wars” is supposed to look. Most importantly, the teaser got my two youngest children, ages 2 and 4, to spontaneously sing the main theme in chorus (“Da-da-da-DAW-da … “), as they demanded to re-watch the teaser at least 15 times.

      Karl, I get that technology evolves rapidly (my new job since leaving the Herald is editing a technology magazine), but look at the world around you. How much of it looks roughly comparable to what you saw 30 years ago? More roads, houses, buildings, sure, but really? I work in a building that’s 150 years old. I live in a home that was built in 1955. I’m sure there are some cool new ships, gear, costumes, etc., in the movie, but 30 years really isn’t that long to expect everything everywhere to suddenly look massively newfangled. Besides, the “used universe” concept is one of the best ideas George Lucas ever had. Props to J.J. for bringing it back. Also, look at the one thing from the trailer that’s been ridiculed the most: the lightsaber. They take one small element and try to do something cool and new with it, and what did that get them? Personally, I think the new lightsaber LOOKS COOL and I don’t need to hear anything else about it. Except maybe from people who know what they’re talking about, like this guy:

      http://on.cc.com/1AcjMsP

      Also, that can’t have been the real “Jedi” Steve Hernandez. The real “Jedi” Steve would know what Disney has been saying for months (neatly summarized by both Josh and David): The Expanded Universe is out. The movies are the new canon. The message is that wherever they don’t dovetail (borrowing is permitted), the EU is “wrong.” Personally, I think they’ve been a little pissy about it, but the basic idea of “ix-nay on the Expanded Universe” has been out there forever.

      • I don’t think the Falcon looks bad per se but I can just tell that it’s not a physical model (unless it is and I’m just a cynical, curmudgeonly jerk, which is quite likely) but I guess the scene in question might have been kind of hard to pull off any other way because it’s pretty elaborate. And have they really built a full scale model for the movie? That is just the kind of news I want to hear.

        And the prequels crapped all over a bunch of earlier Expanded Universe story lines anyway (story lines which Lucas would surely have never sanctioned if he had the prequels written all along as he so claims) so I’ve kind of viewed them as separate entities for a while. Though I also view the prequels as separate canon from the original trilogy because they suck so bad.

  4. You know, I’ve always been a fan of the Star Wars movies, but never bothered to learn more about its universe. I’m aware of the extensive library of comics, books, and fan fiction out there, but there’s so much of it that I wouldn’t know where to begin. Listening to Steve Hernandez talk about all the crazy things happening in the Star Wars universe got me really excited and I think it would be great if he (or someone just as knowledgeable on the subject) would recommend a few story archs from the comics for those of us who would be interested.

    • Juan I’m nowhere near as knowledgeable as Steve Hernandez on this stuff but I did used to be a huge Star Wars nerd and a big fan of the novels and comics (although my interest dropped off around the early 2000’s) and I recall one of the best arcs being the Thrawn trilogy by Timothy Zahn. This was comprised of the novels “Heir to the Empire”, “Dark Force Rising” and “The Last Command”. They take place after Return of the Jedi, feature most of the main characters and as far as I recall maintain the feel of the original trilogy quite well. They were also adapted into three graphic novels which I remember enjoying a lot.

      Another novel/graphic novel which would be a good place to go from the original trilogy would be “Shadows of the Empire” which takes place between “Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi”.

        • Hmm, well I don’t think “Crimson Empire” should be on there because the art in that series really sucks in my opinion. All the characters are boss-eyed.

          I loved “Dark Empire” (and “Dark Empire II”) as a 12 yearold and it’s pretty epic stuff but I think that list has it placed too high. It’s very strange and doesn’t feel particularly “Star Wars-y” in the classic sense. The art is interesting; very stylised and atmospheric but when I revisited it in my twenties the writing/dialogue seemed kind of bad.

          The only other ones listed that I’ve read would be from the Star Wars Tales series which used to be an awesome 64 page comic full of all kinds of short stories that didn’t have to adhere to canon and often showcased up and coming talent. Then some wise guy decided to change it so they only used established artists and writers, had less stories and had to stick to canon and it sucked. If you can find any collections of the earlier issues then I’d recommend them if you’re looking for really concise stories and varied content.

    • Man this is news to me! I wasn’t a huge fan of the last two movies so I don’t really know how to feel about this.

      • I’m a huge fan of the first two, I didn’t think the third one was that bad, and I wasn’t a fan of Terminator Salvation. I thought it had tons of promise, but it didn’t do it for me. The reason why I’m interested in this new one is because Arnold is back. He was a big part of what made the first two movies work, and even though this is likely another opportunity for everyone to cash in on the franchise, part of me still has high hopes for a new great Terminator movie. Will this be it? Only time will tell my friend.

        • I’m sad to report that the recently unveiled Terminator trailer looks terrible. It seems like they’re trying to go back to around the time when the first movie took place and it kind of looks like they might re-enact some of the same scenarios to “change history”. It all looks super convoluted. Sigh…

  5. And Andy strikes again!

    I can’t believe he’s complaining about the “absurdities” of “License to Kill”! It’s James Bond for gods sake, it’s supposed to be absurd. A big part of the reason why I’m not a huge fan of the Craig movies (though I do love Skyfall) is just how lacking in absurdity they are. To me James Bond is should be at least a little campy and fun but those Craig ones (especially Quantum of Solace) are just so dry and gritty that they may as well be Jason Bourne movies.

    I’m swiftly coming to the conclusion that Andy has a problem with movies that operate on their own, not entirely realistic, internal logic. I wouldn’t be surprised if his problems with “The Killing” are that some of it’s events and twists are too contrived or unrealistic. But it’s fiction, it’s a story that somebody wrote. It doesn’t always have to play out like things do in real life!

    • Sorry Andy, I just re-read this comment and I think I’m being kind of a jerk.

      I do admire your penchant for speaking your mind no matter how controversial your opinions may be and I very much respect those opinions.

      You’ve just been pushing all my buttons in these last few episodes!

      • If David is taking back his comments, then I’m standing by them. It’s the only way to maintain balance in the universe, I’m afraid.

  6. Whenever you guys talk about your faith I always get really intrigued but also kind of embarrassed because I’m so ignorant of the Mormon religion so maybe I should watch “Meet the Mormons”. I’m always afraid of these kind of films though because i often find that when religious media has an attitude of self-promotion it can come across as condescending and kind of tacky.

    It’s awful to say but before I started listening to these podcasts all I thought of when someone mentioned Mormonism was Donny Osmond. Make of that what you will but please don’t be offended.

    And are Mormons not allowed to drink alcohol or have sex before marriage at all? Or is there some personal leeway with regards to such issues. I mean how does that work with Karl? He’s Irish so how can he be a Mormon if they’re not allowed to drink?

    • You guys are Mormons?!!! Just kidding.

      You know, David, I also get a bit irked when people promote their religion as “the one”, but it doesn’t compare to the level of irritation that I get from people who criticize religion with no real basis for their critique. I was raised Catholic for the majority of my life and I don’t practice it anymore (for the most part), so I get it, I understand people’s problems with religion because I have many problems with it too. But I dislike it when religion is attacked or made fun of for no real reason. I find that kind of behavior extremely disrespectful. People’s faith is sacred and it should be respected whether we agree with it or not.

      Anyway, things are getting too serious around here. Let’s talk about food. Anyone eat anything comment worthy lately?

      • Well I certainly didn’t mean for my comment to come across as critical or disrespectful in any way. I just find different religions extremely interesting; I have nothing other than admiration for those with the faith and will power to follow such a lifestyle and I’m always curious to hear about such things, especially from guys like Jay, Josh, Andy and Karl who I know are intelligent and honest folks and will give me straight, objective answers. Although there was humour in my comment about Karl being an Irish Mormon I am sincerely curious about the elements of abstinence involved in Mormonism. I don’t want to come across as mocking or judgemental; I have a great respect for those who don’t give in to vice and invest as much energy as possible into positive outlets.

        And I hope it didn’t seem that I was singling out those with religious beliefs as being irritating as I’ve come across more than enough obnoxious, dogmatic atheists who like to promote their school of thought as the only one of worth to know better than that!

        As for food; I’ve been on kind of a middle eastern kick of late. I cooked up a delicious Arabian Lentil soup yesterday and I’ve been craving a kebab but it’s so hard to get a good one around here. Also did you guys have good food over Thanksgiving? Did you stick with the traditional Turkey dinner or go with something more adventurous?

        • Sorry David! I didn’t mean to make it sound like I was attacking you. That was just a general comment. That’s my fault for having zero writing skills. My bad bro.

          • No worries man. I’m probably just a little overly defensive because these kind of conversations can be quite sensitive and I don’t really have much experience with religious folks so I feel like I’m walking on egg shells and somewhat out of my element.

          • No it was all me. After re-reading my comment, it certainly sounded like I was after you. You have nothing to worry when it comes to speaking your mind, man—I’m very hard to offend. Not only am I tolerant of many things, but I’m pretty non-confrontational. Instead of a that’s-pretty-stupid-what-you-said-let’s-go-you-and-me kind of guy, I’m a hey-that-wasn’t-very-cool-man-why-do-you-think-that-way kind of guy.

            About Thanksgiving, yes we went non-traditional this year. We usually have Turkey and all the usual sides you can think of, but with a very peculiar stuffing. It’s a very elaborate and time-consuming recipe, but the results are quite amazing if I do say so myself. The stuffing consists of ham, chicken, turkey sausage, beef sausage, olives, capers, raisins, almonds, pecans, celery, apple, pear, tomatoes, garlic, jalapeños, cider vinegar, red wine, and all of the other condiments like salt and whatnot. Anyway, we didn’t make that this year haha. My sister and I did all the cooking and we made brisket with a lemon-cumin pesto, traditional coleslaw, and potato salad with a champagne vinegar dressing. I overcooked the brisket though, so that kind of sucked. I’ll get it right next time if it’s the last thing I do.

            What about you, man? I know you probably don’t celebrate and American holiday, but did you happen to do any special cooking on that particular day?

    • David,
      Awesome comment. Even though there are over 11 million Mormons in the world now, I still think many people feel exactly the way you do, which is probably why my church made “Meet the Mormons.”

      Donny Osmond is a very common person that people associate with the LDS church. He seems to be a very sweet man, so that makes me smile.

      And you are correct: Mormons don’t drink alcohol or have pre-marital sex before marriage — at least, we’re not “supposed” to… I’m sure there are Mormons who still do, but it is our belief to abstain.

      If you’re curious, you can find a list of “Frequently Asked Questions” about Mormons here:

      http://www.mormon.org/faq

      Many sources on the Internet are inaccurate, but the link above is reliable.

      Thanks for writing!
      Jason

      • I know Donny Osmond and Jason’s actually kind of a Donny Osmond type … which I guess is a compliment to both of them? Haha.

        Jason has kind of an idealized image of Mormons because he’s such a good guy. It’s true that Mormons are a pretty respectable bunch and strive for a ideal of personal perfection based on ethics similar to most Christians, but the reality is that human nature is pretty much the same wherever you go. There are good Mormons and bad Mormons and people who abide by the principles and those who don’t. I mean, you saw Cleanflix, right?

        • Actually one of my favourite things about Cleanflix was the way it communicated a sense of the Mormon community in Utah quite vividly. It’s a very different social landscape than the North of England as far as I can tell and that element interested me as much as the actual quandary driving the film.

    • DAVID! I don’t care what anybody thinks about Mormons EXCEPT that I don’t want to be associated with Donny Osmond’s music. He’s a nice enough dude, I went to high school with his kids (and actually played in a punk band with one of them), but at least think of Kaskade or The Killers or Imagine Dragons or Neon Trees or Fictionist, etc.

      Skip that movie. Watch these “I’m a Mormon” ads from the singer of The Killers and the drummer of Neon Trees. These are basically the same format as that movie and I actually like what they have to say too:

      Elaine Bradley

          • Christian is a such a rad person. I love and admire that guy at least as much for keeping the LDS Film Festival afloat as for his films. My new goal in life is to become famous enough that the LDS Church will make one of these featuring me, and I will speak in my native tongue. Which means that I will probably sound boring and very white bread, except for the occasional colorful insertion of the word “dude.”

          • Thanks Josh. These are really interesting videos. This is the kind of religious stuff that I want to see instead of the standard stuffy/condescending/unrealistic propaganda.

  7. I guess I’m agnostic or religion neutral or just don’t care..whatever you want to catagorize me as. I’m here to listen to and enjoy people talking about MOVIES….I want to hear everyones side of everything and it enriches me on my opinion on them whether I agree or not…I don’t judge someone on their beliefs…I use their beliefs to try and understand and respect them more and make me a better fullfilled person….Andy you are an asshole and this is why I love you….

  8. Guys, I’m trying to catch up on 2014 releases, but it can be pretty difficult to pinpoint when a movie actually came out. This is particularly difficult when a movie has a limited release and then a wide release. Which one should I go by? How are you guys considering this when making up your top movies of the year list? Then there are the foreign movies that many times are released a year in advance in their countries of origin. I usually go to wikipedia and IMDB to look up a movie’s release date, but are those the most reliable sites out there?

    • Juan! — Great question! Thanks for caring about these things like I do. I wrote this full blog post on this very topic: http://bit.ly/1FOQlOP

      It has been called “flawed,” but it’s my personal criteria. But in case you don’t want to read the whole thing, here’s the crux:

      “…here is my simple rule for determining a film’s year of release:

      The year of release will be determined by the first date that a film becomes WIDELY available to a U.S. audience.

      In other words, I will use the following information, in this order of priority:
      1. When the movie receives a widespread theater release in the U.S.
      2. When the movie is released on DVD or Blu-ray or both.
      3. When the movie becomes available through services like Netflix or Redbox.

      This also means that I will completely disregard the following information:
      — Film festival screening dates
      — Limited theater releases
      — Any type of foreign releases, theater or DVD
      — Any other system for determining year of release

      My reason for this method:
      When I review a film, I believe my audience should be able to check it out, if they wish. So, I want the release year to be when U.S. movie-lovers can easily find the film (especially since I’m in an area that doesn’t usually get limited releases, either).”

      JP

      • To me, the two biggest flaws are 1st) You’re on a different schedule than every other critic in the country and 2nd) We are listened to in 138 countries. It seems to make more sense to stick with the industry-defined year of release.

        • To Josh and Juan:

          1.) We are an American-based podcast with the vast majority of our listeners in the United States. (Probably 60% are U.S.-based.)

          2.) And the majority of that majority mentioned above are in our same boat when it comes to having access to film festivals, premieres and Limited-release screenings… In other words, they don’t have access… They have to wait for wide theater releases, DVD / Blu-ray, VOD, Redbox, Netflix, etc.

          3.) What in the world is the “industry-defined year of release”? And where can I find it? Who defines it, and where did that defining authority come from? That would be wonderful! But it’s about as clear as mud. Very ambiguous and nonsensical. Even The Academy’s stipulations are ridiculous… Hence—

          4.) My reason for outlining a simple and clear-cut method for assigning a release year: Whatever year the film becomes WIDELY AVAILABLE to U.S.-based viewers, whether it’s in theaters, on DVD / Blu-ray, VOD, Redbox, Netflix, etc.

          5.) I feel No. 4 above best serves the majority of our audience, because I will be reviewing movies that THEY CAN ALSO easily access and see. It’s very frustrating to hear reviews about films that you can’t find or see for another year…

          Adopt my method. You’ll love it. We don’t need to be lemmings, because I’ve devised a better way.
          JP

  9. Well, I know I am a little late to the Star Wars teaser trailer discussion, but I wanted to share a thought or two:

    1. I had to chuckle with the way the storm troopers were represented–as if they are a deadly Navy Seals-esque type of outfit. As I remember, they were mostly just target practice for Han Solo and Co. Storm Troopers couldn’t hit the broad side of a Bantha.

    2. I didn’t have a problem with seeing the Falcon. Han was never going to give that up. I wasn’t happy to see the same crappy Tie Fighters taking shots at the Falcon. Are we still beating on that drum?

    3. It’s Star Wars and I am excited. And it was awesome to see my kids get excited. I am happy that J.J. is just doing one movie. I am happy other directors get to take a crack at it.

  10. If you want to see a depressing list of our real short-comings as critics, here are the 50 highest critically ranked indie films of 2014 so far (and all of these landed in the A to B+ range). I’m going to see as many as I can, but I’ve only seen about 20 of them so far. At least we’ve reviewed 8 of the Top 10 on the show.

    50 TOP RATED INDIE FILMS OF 2014

    1. Boyhood by Richard Linklater
    Average Critic Rating: A (74 grades)

    2. Ida by Pawel Pawlikowski
    Average Critic Rating: A (43 grades)

    3. Only Lovers Left Alive by Jim Jarmusch
    Average Critic Rating: A- (83 grades)

    4. The Grand Budapest Hotel by Wes Anderson
    Average Critic Rating: A- (75 grades)

    5. Under the Skin by Jonathan Glazer
    Average Critic Rating: A- (70 grades)

    6. Blue Ruin by Jeremy Saulnier
    Average Criticwire Rating: A- (60 grades)

    7. The Wind Rises by Hayao Miyazaki
    Average Critic Rating: A- (55 grades)

    8. Life Itself by Steve James
    Average Critic Rating: A- (49 grades)

    9. Stranger by the Lake by Alain Guiraudie
    Average Critic Rating: A- (49 grades)

    10. Nymphomaniac, Vol. 1 by Lars von Trier
    Average Critic Rating: A- (48 grades)

    11. Gloria by Sebastián Lelio
    Average Critic Rating: A- (41 grades)

    12. Like Father, Like Son by Hirokazu Kore-eda
    Average Critic Rating: A- (40 grades)

    13. Tim’s Vermeer by Teller
    Average Critic Rating: A- (39 grades)

    14. Love is Strange by Ira Sachs
    Average Critic Rating: A- (31 grades)

    15. Closed Curtain by Jafar Panahi & Kambuzia Partovi
    Average Critic Rating: A- (29 grades)

    16. We are the Best! by Lukas Moodysson
    Average Critic Rating: A- (27 grades)

    17. The Missing Picture by Rithy Panh
    Average Critic Rating: A- (25 grades)

    18. Ernest and Celestine by Stéphane Aubier
    Average Critic Rating: A- (24 grades)

    19. Manakamana by Stephanie Spray and Pacho Velez
    Average Critic Rating: A- (24 grades)

    20. The Last of the Unjust by Claude Lanzmann
    Average Critic Rating: A- (22 grades)

    21. The Strange Little Cat by Ramon Zürcher
    Average Critic Rating: A- (19 grades)

    22. Starred Up by David Mackenzie
    Average Critic Rating: A- (18 grades)

    23. Rich Hill by Andrew Droz Palermo & Tracy Droz Tragos
    Average Critic Rating: A- (17 grades)

    24. Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me by Chiemi Karasawa
    Average Critic Rating: A- (16 grades)

    25. 20,000 Days on Earth by Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard
    Average Critic Rating: A- (15 grades)

    26. The Immigrant by James Gray
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (55 grades)

    27. Snowpiercer by Bong Joon-ho
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (48 grades)

    28. The Double by Richard Ayoade
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (42 grades)

    29. The Raid 2: Berandal by Gareth Evans
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (42 grades)

    30. Locke directed by Steven Knight
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (40 grades)

    31. Jodorowsky’s Dune directed by Frank Pavich
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (38 grades)

    32. Joe by David Gordon Green
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (38 grades)

    33. Calvary by John Michael McDonagh
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (37 grades)

    34. Enemy by Denis Villeneuve
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (37 grades)

    35. Obvious Child by Gillian Robespierre
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (37 grades)

    36. The Unknown Known by Errol Morris
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (37 grades)

    37. Cold in July by Jim Mickle
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (35 grades)

    38. A Most Wanted Man by Anton Corbijn
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (35 grades)

    39. Chef by Jon Favreau
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (32 grades)

    40. Omar by Hany Abu-Assad
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (32 grades)

    41. The One I Love by Charlie McDowell
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (32 grades)

    42. Le Week-End by Roger Michell
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (31 grades)

    43. Cheap Thrills by E.L. Katz
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (30 grades)

    44. The Lunchbox by Ritesh Batra
    Average Criticwire Rating: B+ (30 grades)

    45. The Trip to Italy by Michael Winterbottom
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (26 grades)

    46. The Skeleton Twins by Craig Johnson
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (25 grades)

    47. Abuse of Weakness by Catherine Breillat
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (23 grades)

    48. Finding Vivian Maier by John Maloof and Charlie Siskel
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (23 grades)

    49. Stray Dogs by Tsai Ming-liang
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (23 grades)

    50. Belle (Film Page), directed by Amma Asante
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (20 grades)

    51. The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz by Brian Knappenberger
    Average Critic Rating: B+ (19 grades)

    52. The Dance of Reality by Alejandro Jodorowsky
    Average Criticwire Rating: B+ (20 grades)

    53. The Guest (Film Page), directed by Adam Wingard (2014 Sundance Film Festival; September 2014 theatrical release)
    Average Criticwire Rating: B+ (20 grades)

  11. Wow. I’ve only seen 3 of the top 10 and 7 out of the whole list :/ That makes me really sad. Although I have 3 movies that are on the list coming to me this Friday via Netflix and I know that more than a few of these films are streaming on Netflix. Busy weekend ahead of me.

    I noticed that Birdman and Nightcrawler are not on the list. Are they not indie enough or just not indie at all?

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