Movie Podcast Weekly Ep. 170: The Big Short (2015) and the Top 10 Movies of 2015

Episode 170

Happy New Year’s Eve and happy 2016 this week! To celebrate, we have brought you a party in a podcast! What are the best movies of 2015? Your friends here at Movie Podcast Weekly (and the MPW listenership) are here to tell you. We bring you four Top 10 best lists from the hosts and a collective Top 10 list from our listenership. We had the potential of bringing you 50 strong recommendations, but we’ve had some overlap, naturally, so you get 27 various picks among these Top 10 lists! Formerly known as our “The Best Movies of [Year]” list, this is MPW’s official Top 10 Movies of 2015 show. In Episode 170, we also bring you a Feature Review of The Big Short, with special guest Rob Booker (of The Traders Podcast). Join us, and feel free to post your end-of-the-year movie lists in the comments for this episode. Thanks for a great year!

This episode is generously sponsored by Eric E., David W., Josh G., Christian B., Steve R., Vance K., and Dino T. Thank you. Heroes all…

If you’re new to our show… Movie Podcast Weekly typically features four hosts — Jason, Andy, Karl and Geek Cast Ry — 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, 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 Wednesday.


SHOW NOTES:

I. Introduction
— Winter storms and other woes
— Listener comments:
-Kevin Zade of The Zade Story movie podcast
-Black-eyed Jenifer
-Steph from Canada
-Adam
-Michelle from Vermont
— Warm thanks to: Eric E., David W., Josh G., Christian B., Steve R., Vance K., and especially Dino T. [They are the reason you have this show this week!]


[ 0:13:35 ] II. MPW 2015: Year in Review
— Statistics on the inner workings of Movie Podcast Weekly in 2015
— A few highlights and lowlights of 2015
— Reflections on the Cinema of 2015


[ 0:30:57 ] III. Main Event: THE TOP 10 MOVIES OF 2015

Jason’s Top 10 Movies of 2015:
1. No Escape
2. Bone Tomahawk
3. Ex Machina
4. The Walk
5. The Martian
6. Spotlight
7. Sicario
8. Jurassic World
9. Avengers: Age of Ultron
10. Mr. Holmes

Andy’s Top 10 Movies of 2015:
1. Spotlight
2. The Martian
3. Selma
4. Bone Tomahawk
5. The Gift
6. It Follows
7. The Hateful Eight
8. The Revenant (which Andy has not yet seen)
9. Spy
10. Meru

Karl’s Top 10 Movies of 2015:
1. The Martian
2. Ex Machina
3. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
4. Avengers: Age of Ultron
5. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
6. Mad Max: Fury Road
7. Steve Jobs
8. The Walk
9. The Big Short
10. Spy

Ryan’s Top 10 Movies of 2015:
1. Sicario
2. Bone Tomahawk
3. Mad Max: Fury Road
4. Ex Machina
5. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
6. The Martian
7. Ant-Man
8. American Ultra
9. The Gift
10. The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

MPW Listeners’ Top 10 Movies of 2015:
1. Mad Max: Fury Road
2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
3. Ex Machina
4. It Follows
5. Inside Out
6. The Martian
7. Sicario
8. Ant-Man — tie — Spotlight
9. Jurassic World
10. Room

Winners! E-mail Jason at MoviePodcastWeekly@gmail.com with your info!
-James W. = Mad Max: Fury Road poster
-Jessica (aka Emily) = Magic Mike XXL Blu-ray

IV. MORE LISTS OF 2015
— Honorable Mentions of 2015
— Biggest Disappointments / Heartbreaks of 2015
— Dishonorable Mentions and the Worst Movie of 2015
— Things We Didn’t Get to See Yet (But Should Have, and Wanted to…)
— What happened to these movies?


V. New in Theaters This Past Weekend:
The Big Short
Joy
Point Break
Concussion
Daddy’s Home
45 Years [ Limited ]
The Hateful 8 (2016) [ Limited ]
The Revenant (2016) [ Limited ]


FEATURE REVIEWS HAVE TIME STAMPS:

[ 2:02:32 ] VI. Feature Review: THE BIG SHORT (2015) with guest Rob Booker
Jason = 6.5 ( Rental )
Karl = 10 ( Must-see / Theater / Will probably Buy it! )
Rob Booker = 10 ( Must-see / Theater / Buy it! )

Follow Rob Booker on Twitter: @RobBooker


VII. Wrap-Up / Plugs / Ending
— Happy New Year!


COMING UP NEXT WEEK ON MPW 2016:
Episode 171 where we’ll be reviewing “The Hateful Eight” and talking about what movies are coming in 2016. Join us!


LINKS FOR THIS EPISODE:

Hear the Geek Cast Live Podcast here now! GCL.ninja

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.

Ry’s BIO
Ry’s flagship show: Geek Cast Live Podcast
DONATE here to facilitate the creation of more Geek content!
Blog: Geek Cast Live
Web site: Geek Harder.com
Facebook
Twitter: @GeekCastRy

Jason recommends supporting: Operation Underground Railroad

Listen to MPW:
Add MPW to your Stitcher playlist: Stitcher.com
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Right-click to download the MPW 100 Rap

Josh’s links:
Hear Josh named as one of the Top 5 Up-and-Coming Directors on The Film Vault Podcast!
Twitter: @IcarusArts
Josh covers streaming movies on: Movie Stream Cast
Hear Josh on The SciFi Podcast
Hear Josh on Horror Movie Podcast

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 Wednesday for Movie Podcast Weekly.


Jason has compiled, roughly but fairly exhaustively, every domestic 2015 movie release, with maybe a few international cinema additions. Behold, the films of 2015:

#Horror
’71
10,000 Saints
10,000 km
45 Years
5 Flights Up
5 to 7
6 Ways to Die
6 Years
90 Minutes in Heaven
99 Homes
A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story
A Brilliant Young Mind
A Christmas Horror Story
A Girl Like Her
A Hard Day
A Little Chaos
A Most Violent Year
A Murder in the Park
A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence
A Royal Night Out
A Walk in the Woods
A Year in Champagne
A la mala
Absolution
Accidental Love
Addicted to Fresno
Adult Beginners
Against the Sun
Alex of Venice
Alien Outpost
All Creatures Big and Small
All Things Must Pass: The Rise and Fall of Tower Records
Aloft
Aloha
Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip
Always Watching: A Marble Hornets Story
American Heist
American Sniper
American Ultra
Amira and Sam
Amnesiac
Amy
Anita B
Anomalisa
Ant-Man
Arabian Nights
Ardor
Area 51
Ashby
Attack on Titan
Avengers: Age of Ultron
Back in Time
Bad Asses on the Bayou
Badlapur (Bollywood)
Ballet 422
Bare
Barely Lethal
Barista
Batkid Begins: The Wish Heard Around the World
Beasts of No Nation
Before We Go
Beloved Sisters
Best of Enemies
Beyond the Brick: A LEGO Brickumentary
Beyond the Reach
Big Game
Big Significant Things
Big Stone Gap
Black Mass
Black Sea
Black or White
Blackhat
Bleeding Heart
Bone Tomahawk
Boulevard
Bound to Vengeance
Bravetown
Break Point
Breaking Through
Bridge of Spies
Broken Horses
Brooklyn
Burnt
Burying the Ex
By the Sea
Cake
Can’t Stand Losing You: Surviving the Police
Captive
Carol
Cartel Land
Carter High
Cemetery of Splendour
Chappie
Chi-Raq
Child 44
Chloe and Theo
Christmas Eve
Cinderella
Circle
Close Range
Clouds of Sils Maria
Club Life
Coming Home
Compared to What: The Improbable Journey of Barney Frank
Concussion
Condemned
Cooties
Cop Car
Creed
Criminal Activities
Crimson Peak
Cupcakes
Cut Bank
Cymbeline
Daddy’s Home
Danny Collins
Daredevil (on Netflix)
Dark Places
Days of Grace
Deli Man
Desert Dancer
Difret
Digging for Fire
Do I Sound Gay?
Do You Believe?
Don Verdean
Don’t Mess With Texas
Dope
Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’
Dragon Blade
Drunk Wedding
Drunk, Stones, Brilliant, Dead: The Story of the National Lampoon
Eden
Effie Gray
Enchanted Kingdom
Entertainment
Entourage
Escobar: Paradise Lost
Everest
Everly
Every Secret Thing
Every Thing Will Be Fine
Ex Machina
Exeter
Experimenter
Extraction
Faith of Our Fathers
Fantastic Four
Far From Men
Far From the Madding Crowd
Faults
Fear Clinic
Felix and Meira
Fifty Shades of Grey
Final Girl
Finders Keepers
Focus
Forsaken
Fort Tilden
Foxcatcher
Frank the Bastard
Freaks of Nature
Freeheld
Fresh Dressed
Furious 7
Gabriel
Gemma Bovery
Get Hard
Girl House
Girlhood
Glass Chin
Gloria
Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief
Good Kill
Goodnight Mommy
Goosebumps
Grandma
Growing Up (and Other Lies)
Guidance
Hard To Be a God
He Named Me Malala
He Never Died
Heaven Knows What
Heist
Helicopter Mom
Hell and Back
Hellions
Heroes of Dirt
Hidden
Hillsong: Let Hope Rise
Hitchcock / Truffaut
Hitman: Agent 47
Home
Home Sweet Hell
Horse Money
Hot Pursuit
Hot Tub Time Machine 2
Hotel Transylvania 2
Hungry Hearts
Hunting Elephants
Hyena
I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story
I Smile Back
Imba Means Sing
In Stereo
In the Heart of the Sea
Infinitely Polar Bear
Ingrid Bergman in Her Own Words
Inherent Vice
Inside Out
Insidious: Chapter 3
Insurgent (The Divergent Series)
Iris
Irrational Man
It Follows
It’s All So Quiet
I’ll See You in My Dreams
Jackie and Ryan
James White
Janis: Little Girl Blue
Jem and the Holograms
Jenny’s Wedding
Jessica Jones (on Netflix)
Jimmy’s Hall
Joe Dirt 2: Beautiful Loser
Joy
Jupiter Ascending
Jurassic World
Just Before I Go
Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet
Kidnapping Mr. Heineken
Kill Me Three Times
Killing Them Safely
Kilo Two Bravo
Kingdom of Shadows
Kingsman: The Secret Service
Knock Knock
Krampus
Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter
Kung Fu Killer
Labyrinth of Lies
Ladrones
Lambert and Stamp
Landmine Goes Click
Larry Gaye: Renegade Male Flight Attendant
Last Knights
Laugh Killer Laugh
Learning to Drive
Legend
Let’s Kill Ward’s Wife
Leviathan
Life
Lila and Eve
Listen to Me Marlon
Little Accidents
Little Boy
Lost River
Lost in Hong Kong
Lost in the Sun
Love
Love and Mercy
Love the Coopers
Love, Rosie
MI-5
Macbeth
Mad Max: Fury Road
Mad Women
Madame Bovary
Maggie
Magic Mike XXL
Mala Mala
Man From Reno
Man Up
Manglehorn
Maps to the Stars
Masterminds
Match
Mateo
Max
Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials
McFarland, USA
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
Meadowland
Mediterranea
Meet Me in Montenegro
Merchants of Doubt
Meru
Minions
Misery Loves Comedy
Miss You Already
Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation
Mississippi Grind
Mistress America
Mojin: The Lost Legend
Molly Moon and the Incredible Book of Hynotism
Momentum
Mommy
Monkey Kingdom
Monster Trucks
Monsters: Dark Continent
Mortdecai
Mr. Holmes
My All American
My Life Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn
My Nazi Legacy
Nasty Baby
Nightlight
No Escape
No Home Movies
Noble
Noma My Perfect Story
Nowitzki: The Perfect Shot
Old 37
Old Fashioned
Olvidados
Our Brand Is Crisis
Outcast
Paddington
Pan
Paper Towns
Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension
Partisan
Pass the Light
Patch Town
Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2
Paul Taylor: Creative Domain
Pawn Sacrifice
Pay the Ghost
Peace Officer
People Places Things
Phoenix
Pigeon
Pitch Perfect 2
Pixels
Point Break
Police Story: Lockdown
Poltergeist
Predestination
Preggoland
Prem Ratan Dhan Payo
Preservation
Project Almanac
Prophet’s Prey
Queen of Earth
[REC] 4: Apocalypse
Racing Extinction
Reality
Red Army
Regression
Results
Return to Sender
Ricki and the Flash
Ride
Riot Club
Road Hard
Rock the Kasbah
Roger Waters The Wall
Room
Run All Night
Russell Madness
SMOSH: The Movie
Saint Laurent
Samba
San Andreas
Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse
Secret in Their Eyes
See You in Valhalla
Self / Less
Selma
Serena
Set Fire to the Stars
Seventh Son
Seymour: An Introduction
Shanghai
Shaun the Sheep Movie
Shelter
She’s Funny That Way
Sicario
Sinister 2
Sisters
Skin Trade
Sleeping With Other People
Slow West
Soaked in Bleach
Some Kind of Beautiful
Some Kind of Hate
Son of Saul
Son of a Gun
Song One
Songs From the North
Soul Boys of the Western World
Southpaw
Spare Parts
Spectre
Spotlight
Spring
Spy
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Staten Island Summer
Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine
Still Alice
Stink
Stonewall
Straight Outta Compton
Strange Magic
Strangerland
Stray Dog
Suffragette
Sunshine Superman
Superfast
Tab Hunter Confidential
Taken 3
Talvar (Bollywood)
Tangerine
Taxi (Jafar Panahi’s)
Ted 2
Ten Thousand Saints
Terminator Genisys
Testament of Youth
That Sugar Film
The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared
The 11th Hour
The 33
The Age of Adaline
The Anomaly
The Armor of Light
The Assassin
The Beauty Inside
The Big Short
The Boy Next Door
The Boy and the World
The Cobbler
The Cokeville Miracle
The Connection
The Coup
The Curse of Downers Grove
The Cut
The D Train
The DUFF
The Danish Girl
The Dark Horse
The Dead Lands
The Diabolical
The Diary of a Teenage Girl
The Duke of Burgundy
The End of the Tour
The Farewell Party
The Film Critic
The Final Girls
The Forger
The Gallows
The Gift
The Good Dinosaur
The Green Inferno
The Gunman
The Hallow
The Human Centipede III: Final Sequence
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2
The Hunting Ground
The Intern
The Keeping Room
The Kindergarten Teacher
The Lady in the Car With Glasses and a Gun
The Lady in the Van
The Last Five Years
The Last Witch Hunter
The Lazarus Effect
The Letters
The Little Death
The Loft
The Longest Ride
The Look of Silence
The Man From U.N.C.L.E.
The Man in the High Castle (Amazon series)
The Martian
The New Girlfriend
The Night Before
The Outskirts
The Overnight
The Peanuts Movie
The Perfect Guy
The Reflektor Tapes
The Remaining
The Ridiculous 6
The Riot Club
The Runner
The Salt of the Earth
The Salvation
The Search for General Tso
The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
The Second Mother
The Seven Five
The Seventh Dwarf
The Seventh Son
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water
The Stanford Prison Experiment
The Summer of Sangailé
The Transporter Legacy
The Transporter: Refueled
The Tribe
The Vatican Tapes
The Visit
The Voices
The Walk
The Wannabe
The Water Diviner
The Wedding Ringer
The Wolfpack
The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death
The Wonders
The World Made Straight
The World of Kanako
The Wrecking Crew
The Yes Men Are Revolting
Theeb
This Changes Everything
Timbuktu
Time Lapse
Time Out of Mind
Tokyo Tribe
Tom at the Farm
Tomorrowland
Tracers
Trainwreck
Trash
Triple Nine
True Story
Trumbo
Truth
Un Gallo Con Muchos Huevos
Uncle John
Underdogs
Unexpected
Unfinished Business
Unfriended
Unsullied
Vacation
Vendetta
Veronika Decides to Die
Vice
Victor Frankenstein
Victoria
Walt Before Mickey
War Room
We Are Still Here
We Are Your Friends
We Come as Friends
Welcome to Me
What We Did on Our Holiday
What We Do in the Shadows
When Animals Dream
Where Hope Grows
While We’re Young
White God
Wild Card
Wild Horses
Wild Tales
Winter Fire
Wolf Totem
Woman in Gold
Woodlawn
Wrecker
Yakuza Apocalypse
Youth
Z for Zachariah

142 thoughts on “Movie Podcast Weekly Ep. 170: The Big Short (2015) and the Top 10 Movies of 2015

  1. Random question for Jay.

    Since you’ve been to the movies every week since September 2012 (To quote Joey Lawrence – “WHOA”), is there any one week that stands out the most in terms of regretting going? Whether it was the movie you saw being terrible, some awful movie going experience (Whenever you don’t have Karl to yell at talkers), or making the foolish decision to go out while under the weather?

    • Wow, Sal. That’s a great and poignant question. I’ll give you an equally poignant answer…

      To be honest, yes, there are many instances in that 171 consecutive weeks that stand out to me…

      Really, every single week that I go to a movie means time that I’m choosing to spend away from my two little kids. And all those hours sure add up.

      While my mother lived in Utah for a precious few months, the one movie she attended with me was “Unfriended,” my worst movie of this year… That was regrettable. It was a terrible film, and it was quite vulgar, as well.

      Another instance that comes to mind was seeing “The Transporter: Refueled” this year: It was a very late, 10-something p.m. screening. I trudged out of the theater, totally exhausted, sometime between midnight and 1 a.m. I sat in my car just totally deflated because that movie was such a waste of time and money, and I literally asked myself, “What am I doing with my life?” ha ha. (Insert uncomfortable silence here…)

      I remember vividly in January 2013 that I foolishly braved blizzard-like conditions to drive to my theater to see “Gangster Squad” (which ended up being a huge, awful disappointment). I had no business driving there that fateful night. The snow was deep, and the roads were treacherous. It was insane. Cops were telling people to stay off the roads altogether. The very next morning (under similar conditions) I drove back to the theater again to see “Zero Dark Thirty.” I actually considered (seriously) hiding in the theater and sleeping behind the back row of seats after “Gangster Squad” so I wouldn’t have to drive back and forth for the next morning’s screening of “Zero Dark Thirty.” … Yes, I have problems. (But you couldn’t have a more dedicated captain at the helm of this ship.)

      I know people view what we do as a mere hobby, and I believe for my co-host friends, that’s what it is… But for me, I see my commitment to film criticism as a personal life mission. I feel like it’s what I was born to do, among other things. And even if I wasn’t born to do it; I want to do it, so I choose to do it.

      Everything you can choose to do with your life has an opportunity cost, and this is no different. Time spent doing one thing means time you can give toward another. However, I’m certain there is no other aspiration I’d rather be giving my attention to. I literally want to be healthier in order to live longer for two reasons: 1. To be here for my kids (and grandchildren) as long as possible 2. To see more new movie releases each new year.

      My wife half-kiddingly (but usually not) refers to my movie-going and MPW / HMP as me “spending my strength on harlots,” which is a hilarious biblical reference. There is definitely some truth in that… (Yes, my wife called you all harlots.) But sometimes those harlots end up being movies like “No Escape,” “Ex Machina” and “Spotlight.”

      Do I regret some of those 171 consecutive weeks? Yes. But it’s what I was born to do, so I do it!

      Great question, Sal. Thanks,
      J

      • I formerly request from this point forward, all listeners of MPW/HMP are no longer referred to as listeners, but rather harlots.

        You’re certainly an incredibly dedicated person to be putting in all of this time, energy, money, and of course headaches into what you do for MPW/HMP. While all of that dedication may not be helping your already fragile heart, it is a big reason why I keep coming back for new episodes of MPW/HMP.

        On the plus side, I feel like some of those stories will eventually become fun anecdotes in the future. I don’t know how big of a deal vulgarity is for your Nekromomikon, but there is something hilarious about being able to be apart of a rare movie theater experience with your mom and…it turns out to be the atrocious Unfriended.

        The one thing I do take offense to/look on at you disapprovingly is the whole going out when the weather is awful. Keeping up the streak is rather impressive, but at the risk of your own safety? That sounds like one of those weeks where you’re better off renting one of those “See it in theater” rentals over at Amazon. Admittedly, the story of you considering trying to hide out in the theater is one I always laugh at whenever you bring it up on past episodes. If nothing else, if you got busted and thrown into jail, you know a lawyer…

        As far as addictions go, a movie addiction is rather tame compared to the alternatives.

  2. The one we’ve all been waiting for…

    Jason – Kudos for getting the episode out on time. I can’t wait to listen.

    • Jason – Andy touched on this, but you probably should have used percentages instead of raw numbers when going over the “how many 10-rated films” and “how many avoids” numbers since your sample size was significantly larger than the rest*.

      #StatsGeek

      *That’s what she said.

    • Thanks, Dino. And HMP’s Top 10 with BillChete is coming late tonight. … Very late.

      And thanks again for your extremely generous assistance…
      J

      • Don’t mention it, Jason. Honestly, it’s the least I could do. You’re the one (and your co-hosts) who puts blood, sweat, tears, and time into putting out the shows. So, thanks again.

        p.s. I’ve reserved myself to the fact that I’ll never win any MPN contest (I’ll leave the winning to Juan).

  3. Hello MPW,

    Loved the top 10 list you guys had and I must agree with most of your list was spot on and I was in agreement with most.

    The only ones that I had that you did not put on your list was:

    Chappie a great AI film and really worked I think Jay you are way off on this one.

    Kung Fu Killer – A great action detective story with the best martial arts seen on the screen this year!

    Woodlawn – A great football movie based on a true story how a school and city come together during the civil rights movement. If Andy loved Selma he should see Woodlawn it is very spiritual also.

    As for some gripes my big one is for Karl, the Intern is not an avoid at all it is a good movie and I believe Karl is over thinking it maybe he should watch it with a female to see how they like it. I thought it was funny and moved very well. However I do agree with Karl that “the Martian” is the #1 movie of the year!

    I totally disagree with Ry on American Ultra it was a horrible movie, I found it very boring predictable and was not funny at all. Kristen Stewart always amazes me by how does she get paid to act. The casting was horrible and I had such high hopes for that movie.

    My last and final gripe Andy should not be allowed to put a movie on his top ten if he has not seen it….

    Well the movie I saw on Christmas Day was “Spotlight” Jay thanks for the recommendation the movie was outstanding and I was riveted the whole time watching it. You are right on with this one I gave it a 9 and a must see!

    I must say your recommendations have been so good so far! With The Shrine and Spotlight and I look forward to now seeing No Escape and Bone Tomahawk!

    Have a wonderful new year !!!

    Mario (LOON) Leon

    • I really can’t wait until I get around to seeing CHAPPIE. That film seems so divisive. I wonder which side of the ledger I’ll fall.

      Same with NO ESCAPE, although I have a feeling Jason already Bone Tomahawk’d that movie for me. (not that I was terribly interested in it before)

          • Sorry, bro. I will get around to it, though. Just this past week, Ishani and I have finally watched Spotlight and The Big Short. There are a lot of 2015s that I need to go back to.

          • Nice! I liked Spotlight a lot, but haven’t gotten around to The Big Short. Is it worth it?

          • I think it’s definitely worth a watch. It took about 10-15 minutes for me to really get into it, but I was definitely hooked once it got going. Not as good as Spotlight, in my opinion, but definitely more fun (even though it’s not a “happy” topic).

          • Oh you haven’t seen Room? Interesting. I’m very curious how you’ll feel about it. I liked it a lot, but it wouldn’t have made my top ten. I think it’s a little overrated as a film, but the story and acting are well deserving of the hype.

          • I have complied my list of movies that I have either streamed or downloaded for 2016 that I did not get to watch when they were originally released here is my list for my top 10 movies I watched in 2016

            10) Selma
            9)Whiplash
            8)Whats eating Gilbert Grape
            7) Faults
            6) The Perks of Being a Wallflower
            5) John Wick
            4) 99 Homes
            3)Pawn Sacrifice
            2) My All American
            1) The Program

            Maybe you can make a list of what you saw this past year 2016 and let me know, as we all know we don’t see everything right when it is released.

          • Nice list, Mario. I haven’t seen enough 2015 releases this past year to make a full list, but I do think that both Spotlight and The Big Short would have made my 2015 top 10 lists had I seen them last year.

          • Dino,

            Does not I need to be a list of 2015 movies just movies that you streamed or saw in the year 2016. There are movies on here that were released years ago but just now have seen them.

            Mario

          • I don’t know if you guys read Rupert Pupkin Speaks, but that site does a series of lists called Best Discoveries of the given year. These would be all movies you saw in 2016 for example for the first time but they were not 2016 releases. I think this is kind of what Mario is getting at.

  4. Thanks for a great year of podcasts! Well, half year for me (I started listening in August).

    FWIW, here’s my list:

    1. Mad Max: Fury Road
    2. Ex Machina
    3. Room
    4. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
    5. The Walk
    6. Inside Out
    7. Spotlight
    8. Shaun the Sheep
    9. What We Do in the Shadows
    10. The Martian

    Honorable mentions:
    Sicario
    Mission:Impossible – Rogue Nation
    Ant Man
    Creed
    The Big Short

    Might have made the list if I’d seen them:
    The Hateful Eight (seeing it tonight!)
    The Revenant
    Chi-Raq

    Worst Film: Certainly there were much worse films released in 2015, but among the ones I saw, Paper Towns was the only one I rated as low as a 5. And I generally like that type of film (Me and Earl, Fault in Our Stars, etc.), but this one felt like it was trying too hard to be meaningful without really achieving that, and it was ultimately pretty forgettable.

    Surprise: Creed

    Innovative: Inside Out, Victoria

    Disappointing: Good Dinosaur, Tomorrowland

    Comeback: M Knight Shyamalan (The Visit)

    Actor: Benicio del Toro (Sicario), Matt Damon (The Martian), Jacob Trembley (Room), Leiv Schreiber and Mark Ruffalo (Spotlight), Oscar Isaac (Ex Machina), Harrison Ford (The Force Awakens)

    Actress: Brie Larson (Room), Charlize Theron (Fury Road), Alicia Vikander (Ex Machina), Daisy Ridley (The Force Awakens), Saoirse Ronan (Brooklyn), Rebecca Ferguson (Rogue Nation), Laia Costa (Victoria), Kate Winslet (Steve Jobs), Emily Blunt (Sicario) – note, amazing year for women’s performances!

    Screenplay: Ex Machina, Steve Jobs, Room, Spotlight

    Director: George Miller (Fury Road), Robert Zemeckis (The Walk), JJ Abrams (The Force Awakens)

    Don’t Believe the Hype: Bone Tomahawk (ducking for cover… it was good, but more like a 7 or 8, not a 10)

    Better Than it’s Negative Hype: SPECTRE, Tomorrowland (though still disappointing)

    • Nice list, Eric. I see a lot of similarities between your top 10 and mine, which I’ll be posting later today.

      I also like how you broke down your awards and superlatives; completely agree with your “don’t believe the hype” pick (BONE TOMAHAWK is an 8/10 for me and just “aight”), and “better than its negative hype” pick for SPECTRE.

    • Here is my list for the top 10 of 2015

      10) Chappie
      9) Final Girls
      8) Jurassic World
      7) Kung Fu Killer
      6) Ant Man
      5) Straight out of Compton
      4) Creed
      3) Ex Machina
      2) Woodlawn
      1) The Martian

      • Very interesting list, Mario. I love seeing variety in top 10 lists.

        One thing that’s starting to hit me, though, is that EX MACHINA seems to be in the 2-5 range on many lists, both on the show and in the comments.

        • Yes Dino,

          Totally agree out of all the movies it is the one that after you leave the movie it stays with you for a very long time and can be discussed in so many ways.

          Don’t you think it is funny that both main stars in that are both in Star Wars also these actors stick together!

    • Very detailed. Nice.

      I’m on the Bone Tomahawk overhype boat. It was good, but not BMOTY great.

    • Nice to see another list with Room so high up. Your praising of it in the past comment sections is what made me go out of my way to watch it.

    • I should note that my first 5 picks were all somewhat arbitrary in terms of order. I do think that Fury Road is “the film of the year,” but all of those others could also be considered my favorites at different times.

      I strongly disagree with Karl about this being a weak year. I think it was an incredible year for films, and there are many that were honorable mentions or lower ranked for me that in different years would easily have made the top 10 or been among my very favorites.

    • Eric; Look!! We almost the same!!

      #7; Straight Outta Compton
      #6; Spectre
      #5; Jurassic World
      #4; Inside Out
      #3 Star Wars; The Force Awakens
      #2; Mad Max; Fury Road
      #1; Ex Machina

      I also really liked “The Martian” and “What we do in the Shadows”. I barely sneaked in “Room” partly because of your insistence (nagging). And put “Shaun of the Sheep” and “The Walk” on my to-see list because you said so.

      Good Post, man. Thanks.

    • FYI, I believe the first appearance of an Andy’s List was on last year’s Top 10 movies of the year show, when I sent my list in. I love that it sounds similar to Angie’s List.

      So, I’m trademarking that…

      #MakeAmericaGreatAgain

  5. Following Eric’s lead, here is my top 10 (and other lists)…

    TOP 10 MOVIES OF 2015:
    1. Mad Max: Fury Road
    2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
    3. It Follows
    4. Ex Machina
    5. Inside Out
    6. Goodnight Mommy
    7. Victoria
    8. The Martian
    9. World of Tomorrow
    10. Sicario

    1. Mad Max: Fury Road (10/10)
    Unlike anything I’ve ever seen before. The film manages to build an incredibly rich world with fully developed characters primarily through action. And that action is truly something to behold. It assaults your senses from the very beginning, and only allows you to breathe for a few moments once or twice later in the film. The action is also extremely operatic in nature, like a visual dance with the soundtrack as it drives the plot and tells a story. A completely new cinematic language.

    2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (10/10)
    This may not be the best movie of the year, but man, I love this film. It captures the fun and exciting adventure that a Star Wars film should be, and looks beautiful while doing it. I love the look and feel of this film. I loved that there was solid humor throughout that never got cheesy or over-the-top. I loved the relationships between characters – the dialogue and performances were excellent and felt very natural. And I also really like these new groups at play – the First Order, the Resistance, the Knights of Ren – and the struggle this film sets up. Where I think the movie absolutely succeeds, though, is in the new characters it introduces; it’s what I’m most excited about from the film. In many ways, I think it outdoes the original trilogy; at the very least, I think we can all agree that it’s setting up what promises to be an excellent trilogy within the Skywalker saga. I can’t wait until May 26, 2017.

    3. It Follows (10/10)
    A simple, yet genuinely terrifying and relentless film with a unique concept. The film has smart social commentary that is deftly handled, a killer original soundtrack and an artful presentation. The performances are very believable and the characters are likable – we enjoy going along for the ride with them and are rooting for them to survive. Most importantly, though, this movie scared the bejesus out of me.

    4. Ex Machina (10/10)
    Exceedingly eerie and unsettling, yet cool and stylish. Everything in this film feels like the result of incredible deliberation, from the look and sound of Ava down to the architecture of the facility. This movie also manages to remain engaging even during slower moments, which is a likely product of excellent performances by the three main actors (Oscar Isaac and Alicia Vikander, in particular).

    5. Inside Out (9.5/10)
    Arguably the most inventive and clever concept put to film this year, the world the movie conceptualizes has incredible depth and is beautifully animated. The story and themes explored, as well as the humor, are compelling and entertaining for people of all ages.

    6. Goodnight Mommy (9.5/10)
    This was the most devastating and disturbing horror film of 2015. It’s the epitome of subtle horror (with a few not-so-subtle moments sprinkled in), is wonderfully ambiguous and is incredibly effective in creating a pervasive sense of unease from beginning to end. Would easily be the top horror film most years.

    7. Victoria (9/10)
    No other film creates such a sense of time and a feeling of how life can change dramatically and suddenly. The opening 55 minutes are extremely slow, but necessary for you to get the full effect of the conclusion. It’s not the best movie, but it is a singular cinematic experience and a tremendous technical achievement.

    8. The Martian (9/10)
    This movie is like vanilla ice cream – solid and unoffensive, for sure, but probably not the favorite flavor of many. But, vanilla ice cream is a great vehicle for toppings; the toppings of the film are the science and Matt Damon as Mark Watney. A vanilla ice cream sunday with excellent toppings makes for a great dessert… unless you don’t like toppings. Then, you’re just left with vanilla ice cream, which is solid but probably not your favorite.

    9. World of Tomorrow (9/10)
    Clocking in at a scant 17 minutes, this short film manages to pack in more creativity than most feature-length films. Filmmaker Don Hertzfeldt’s vision of the future is inventive, charming and haunting all at once, and is a biting commentary on the world. The animation is also adorable in its simplicity, while the sound is unique and unsettling.

    10. Sicario (9/10)
    Nearly pitch perfect throughout, the film only began to lose steam once it strayed from the procedural structure it began with. Filled with wonderful little character moments, every character, no matter how long or short a time we spend with them, is fully fleshed out. It also cleverly uses Kate as the audience surrogate – she was kept in the dark for most of the film as things slowly unravel to reveal the true purpose and mission of the task force, mirroring the experience I had watching the film. The soundtrack is chilling and perfect, and the final scene leaves us with a parting shot as deflating and truly upsetting as the film’s opening.

    5 HONORABLE MENTIONS:
    • The Look of Silence (9/10)
    • Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief (9/10)
    • Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (9/10)
    • Insidious: Chapter 3 (9/10)
    • Spectre (8.5/10)

    5 MOST DISAPPOINTING MOVIES (movies I had high-to-moderate hopes for, but fell short):
    • Terminator Genisys (7.5/10)
    • Jurassic World (7.5/10)
    • Sinister 2 (7.5/10)
    • Poltergeist (6/10)
    • Self/less (5.5/10)

    WORST DAMN MOVIE OF 2015:
    • Minions (3/10)

    MY ANDY’S LIST – TOP 10 MOVIES OF 2015 (that I didn’t get to see):
    1. Spotlight
    2. The Revenant
    3. Room
    4. The Hateful Eight
    5. Brooklyn
    6. Creed
    7. Amy
    8. Bridge of Spies
    9. Tangerine
    10. The Tribe

    As a p.s., I’m slightly shocked at the lukewarm feelings shown by the hosts (with the exception of Andy, and maybe Ry) towards 2015 cinema in general. I thought there were at least seven movies that are potential masterpieces – not all of them even made my top 10, and there are plenty more highly praised films I couldn’t get to (see my Andy’s List). It was a great year for genre films, too, with some stellar horror, sci-fi, documentary, and animated entries. On top of all that, we were gifted the birth of a truly remarkable new Star Wars trilogy.

    Last year was a solid year in cinema, for sure, but I thought 2015 was pretty magical.

    • Awesome list, Dino and very well written; if you ever start a blog or website (or already have one) please point me in it’s direction.

      You are actually quite a bit higher on Sinister 2 than anyone else I’ve seen so far. I still can’t figure out if I want to watch that movie or not. The first one is possibly my favorite horror film of this decade so I can’t imagine I won’t be dissapointed.

      Also, good to see, I wasn’t the only person who enjoyed Spectre. I was starting to fee like an idiot.

      • Thanks, Jonathan. I’m sure that if I ever start a blog, I’ll shamelessly plug it here in some distasteful fashion.

        SINISTER 2 is a tricky movie. It’s definitely three steps (or more) behind the original, but there still was a lot to it that I enjoyed. Your potential enjoyment of it probably depends on what you liked from the original. If it was the snuff films and twist at the end, then you probably won’t like 2 all that much. If you were more into the Bagul mythology, creepy kids and procedural elements then I think you’ll probably enjoy 2 a bit.

        My rating of 7.5/10 is indicative of the fact that I’m really into the Bagul mythology, and I think the film does a decent enough job of expanding on that (although, I’m not entirely thrilled with how they used the character in the film). I think the fact that it landed on my “Most Disappointing Films” list is also indicative that the film is nowhere near what I was hoping for. So, if and when you decide to dip your toes in, go at it with tempered expectations.

        As for my love of SPECTRE, I’ll admit that it probably has much more to do with my fanboy love for all things Bond, especially Daniel Craig as Bond. That said, I really think it’s a fun movie, and would definitely choose to watch it again over several films in my top 10.

        • Was definitely more interested in the latter in regards to the first Sinister film (although it was a fun twist) so I’ll give the second one a look.

          Agree with you on the fanboy live for Bond films and Spectre was so much better than the Brosnan films (minus Goldeneye I guess).

      • Yes, I definitely enjoyed Spectre. I said in an earlier thread that I prefer the Mission Impossible franchise to Bond now in terms of action/spy franchises, and that still holds up for this year (Rogue Nation > Spectre). But having heard and read so many mediocre reviews of Spectre, I was surprised to find out that it was among my favorites in the series. Very solid and entertaining.

  6. My top 10 that I had e-mailed in:

    10. Creed
    9. The Final Girls
    8. Girl House
    7. Cub
    6. Inside Out
    5. Mad Max: Fury Road
    4. It Follows
    3. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
    2. The Hateful Eight
    1. Room

    Honorable mentions: We’re Still Here, Krampus, The Gift, Chappie and Knock Knock.

    Worst movies of the year includes #Horror, Unfriended, Hot Tub Time Machine 2, and Suburban Gothic.

    Most overrated movie of the year: Bone Tomahawk because Jay kept praising it far too much to give me unrealistic expectations.

    And to add, a list of 2015 movies that I had not seen at the time of sending in my list:

    – No Escape
    – The Martian
    – Star Wars: Episode 7 – The Force Awakens (I’ve since seen it)
    – Spotlight
    – Ex Machina
    – Sicario
    – Steve Jobs
    – The Big Shot

    In addition, I would have added The Revenant to my list, but I didn’t think Jay would count it since it’s wide release is in January.

      • Cub is a little Dutch horror film also known as Welp (Dutch title). It’s on Blu-Ray, you can stream it for a few bucks on Amazon Streaming.

        It’s certainly worth watching if you’re a horror movie. If you’re not, you can skip it.

        Cub likely benefited from being one of the last horror movies I got in before sending in that list over to HMP.

        • Thank you Sal I will have to watch it tonight and let you know what I think…. Thanks for the recommendation.

          Mario Loon

          • I seem to recall some of the other harlots over at HMP enjoyed it too.

            I posted this little blurb about Cub after seeing it on one of the HMP comment sections:

            “Cub was the last movie to make it on my top 10 horror movies of 2015 list. Even made it really high up in the list too. I appreciated how they used a lot of horror tropes, but without becoming too predictable. There were a few moments, particularly near the end, that I was shocked at what was happening.

            If nothing else, Cub was great just for shinning a little light on horror films from Belgium.”

            Ah, looks like it’s a Belgian film, not Dutch. Dutch is just one of the languages.

          • Hello Sal,

            I watched Cub last night and it was ok. I am a horror fan but I found it slow at some points and not very scary.

            I will admit I did watch it very late last night and I was tired so I will try to rewatch it tonight but for now I am rating it a 6. However I will admit the antagonist had the best use of the environment in my book! Sal if you have more to recommend please let me know… I watch everything!

          • Mario: “Hello Sal,

            I watched Cub last night and it was ok. I am a horror fan but I found it slow at some points and not very scary.

            I will admit I did watch it very late last night and I was tired so I will try to rewatch it tonight but for now I am rating it a 6. However I will admit the antagonist had the best use of the environment in my book! Sal if you have more to recommend please let me know… I watch everything!”

            While it was a little slow at points, I was still hooked on it as the fear of something happening was always there. I went into the film without any real idea of what it was about (Cub? What…is it a movie about a killer baby bear?!), so I kept guessing as to where the horror was going to come into play. We’re introduced to several different characters who all could have ended up being the main antagonist.

            Would I have enjoyed it as much had I known exactly who was going to be the killer? That’s questionable.

            If you haven’t yet, head over to HMP to listen to the top ten show with Jay, Josh, and Billchete. Several of us harlots have already posted our top tens in the comment sections if you want more recommendations.

      • Great movie. I’m not a fan of westerns, which was part of my issue with Bone Tomahawk, but I just loved The Hateful Eight.

        • I’ve never considered myself a fan of westerns although the few that I’ve seen have been really amazing. The Hateful Eight, though not a western in the way that most people think about the genre, really made me want to go back and see what I’ve been missing. I’m still really high on it. So awesome.

          • If you haven’t seen them, I’d highly recommend “Unforgiven” and the Coen Bros’ “True Grit” remake (and of course, “Bone Tomahawk” :) )

          • Hi Mark.

            I actually have seen all of those movies you mentioned. I’ve also seen TOMBSTONE, 3 GODFATHERS, and the more recent, 3:10 TO YUMA, YOUNG ONES, and SLOW WEST. That’s literally the extent of my knowledge in that genre. Well, I’ve also seen a ton of Mexican westerns from the golden age of Mexican cinema, but I doubt any of you are familiar with them. Any other recommendations that you think I should watch?

          • Hi Juan,

            Sure, I’d love to recommend some others. I’m not sure if you meant just modern Westerns, but since you didn’t specify, I’ll make a list of all the classic post-High Noon (since it forms a bit of a demarcation line) Westerns I can think of.

            The mid ’60’s to mid ’70’s period was the last real “golden age” of Westerns – although there have been several very good ones in the last 25 years (most of which were on your list).

            If you liked the Hateful 8, it’s very likely you’ll enjoy Sergio Leone’s best:

            The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)
            Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)

            Some other greats:

            John Ford’s best:

            The Searchers (1956)
            The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962)

            Sam Peckinpah’s best:

            The Wild Bunch (1969)
            Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (1973)

            Clint Eastwood’s best (after Unforgiven):

            The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976)

            Some other classics or audience favorites from High Noon until 1990:

            High Noon (1952)
            Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)
            Little Big Man (1970)
            McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971)
            Dances with Wolves (1990)

          • Whoops, I forgot one of the top-rated of all time:

            Shane (1953) – It’s worth seeing for Jack Palance’s mesmerizing and icon-creating role as the sociopathic black-hatted bad guy.

          • Nice! Thanks for the list, Mark. I have added them to my queue and will slowly, but surely, catch up on my westerns. It’s funny how I’m familiar with many of the names on the list without really knowing anything about them. I guess the western genre is embedded in pop culture much more than people would think. Also, I was not aware that DANCES WITH WOLVES was a western. Ha!

          • You’re welcome, Juan! You’ll love “The Good The Bad and The Ugly” and the other Leone film. Tarentino is heavily influenced by him, even going so far as to use the great composer Ennio Morricone (who did the iconic theme music for TGTBTU) to create the first original score ever in a Tarentino film in “Hateful 8”.

          • If you’re going to binge watch on the best westerns ever, you can’t miss the western classic – Joe Dirt.

          • Good ole Papa Gomez raised me on Eastwood and Bruce Lee. I agree with Mark. Ennio Morricone is a master and his work in The Hateful 8 is dope. The opening music is great and then following it up with a Jackie White tune was right up my alley. Anyway, TGTB&TU is tops on my list. There’s a bit of a dry patch midway, or so, thru the movie, but the ending is fantastic. All performances by the 3 leads are great. Drinkin game for TGTB&TU, if you’re so inclined: Take a drink of your drink everytime you hear the theme some, in any form. Take a shot everytime Clint takes his cigarillo out from under his poncho to stick in his piehole. Man, I would love MPW to do a Western Extravaganza Special. A ton of great suggestions here in this thread, and there’s a ton more. Clint’s got a bunch of classics, but watch out for his stinker Paint Your Wagon. It’s terribad! :-)

          • Agreed, Gomez. I was trying to spread the love around to other directors (Ford, Peckinpah, etc) when I made the list for Juan, so there are some sins of omission.

            I think we all need to gather somewhere with many bottles of tequila and play your drinking game involving Clint while we watch Leone’s entire Dollars Trilogy (Trilogia del dollaro – or if you prefer, The Man with No Name Trilogy):

            A Fistful of Dollars (1964)
            For a Few Dollars More (1965)
            The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)

          • @Mark….oh, man…..time and place and I’m all over that! :-) Best idea this year!! It’s early, but probably won’t be beat.

    • Then you’re presently my favorite harlot, Jonathan. ha ha. Your comment telling me you’re going to watch “No Escape” made my all-nighter last night completely worth it! ha ha : ) Seriously. It’s why I do this. Give me your verdict here afterward. (Or please feel free to leave us a voicemail about “No Escape” for next week’s MPW: 801.382.8789.

      ATTN: Horror fans — I’ll have the Horror Movie Podcast Top 10 of 2015 posted by morning! (Happy New Year’s Eve!) Don’t miss it! Must-listen! You’ll get Wolfman Josh’s and BillChete’s lists, as well as mine, of course.

      Thanks again, Jonathan. ; )
      J

      • I am almost 100% in agreement on Sal’s review below for “No Escape.” It’s is very tense filled (I would almost call it Hitchcockian at times) film, and while it would probably not replace anything in my Top Ten list it would be right there on the outside looking in.

        I do have a little girl and that probably did make me more involved in what was going on. To speak to Sal’s query involving the kid’s behavior, I believe that in that situation I would be in full on survival mode and just wanting to make sure my kid was safe; I don’t think the whining would bother me that much. Before I had a child, I would have had the exact same thought though.

        There is nothing in life that changes your view on films (and pretty much everything else for that matter) like having a child. For instance, I now have a hard time watching something as silly as “Firestarter” because I can’t stand the thought of not being able to keep my daughter safe; it’s even worse if you read the book where you get to read all of the internal thoughts of the main character in regards to the situation. So a movie as intense as “No Escape” with so much on the line brings this feeling to the forefront immediately.

        I really enjoyed both Owen Wilson and Pierce Brosnan in their roles; two actors I typically don’t care much for either way. I hope to see Wilson tackling more roles like this in the future; he might grow on me. And Lake Bell…what needs to be said…just DAMN! (Sorry, male and all).

        I didn’t realize or possibly I just didn’t remember that this was a Dowdle brothers film. I haven’t been overly fond of most of their other films (I did somewhat enjoy “Devil”), but I’ve always seen the potential. And here, they hit a home run.

        I agree with Sal that this was the scariest movie of the year; you really feel like you are there in the situation and that is about as high a praise you can give for a film. It does feel slightly formulaic at times so I’m going 8.5 out of 10.

        I’m really glad this movie was put on my radar; it’s one I will be revisiting again at some point.

        • Thanks for checking out “No Escape,” Jonathan. I’m elated by your review.

          And what you wrote here:

          “I agree with Sal that this was the scariest movie of the year; you really feel like you are there in the situation and that is about as high a praise you can give for a film…”

          —makes me feel really good about my Top 10 Horror list on HMP. : )

          J

          • @Dino:

            Let’s review your fellow listeners’ quotes once again. Look at “the spirit” of what they’re saying:

            Sal wrote: The scariest movie of 2015 wasn’t a horror movie. It was No Escape.

            Jonathan wrote: I agree with Sal that [No Escape] was the scariest movie of the year…

            How can the scariest movie of the year not be a worthy consideration for the No. 1 horror movie of the year? It is horror — survival horror. Think of it this way: People getting murdered, ruthlessly and brutally. Execution-style. This is “No Escape.” How is that different from the description of a horror film?

            Question, Dino: Have you watched “No Escape” yet? What are you waiting for? I ranked it at No. 1 on two different lists!

            As for “Bone Tomahawk,” what movie is this?

            Premise: Some well-meaning “civilized” people get kidnapped by cannibals who murder and eat them.

            Could that be the premise to “The Green Inferno” or “Bone Tomahawk”? … It’s both! Are you going to tell me “The Green Inferno” is not a horror movie? They both have their own horrific versions of “the scene.”

            Remember my distinction: Drama is the depiction of conflict. Horror is conflict that is depicted being taken to an extreme level. The events depicted in “No Escape” are extreme.

            A girl has pneumonia = Drama.
            A girl is possessed by a demon = Horror.

            Wild West bandits take the town’s school teacher hostage during a bank robbery = drama.

            Cannibals abduct the town’s female doctor to subject her to the same fate and purpose as their tribe’s other females = horror.

            Come on, Dino!

            Love,
            J

          • Jason –

            While you look at “the spirit” of what they wrote, I’ll point out once more what Sal **actually wrote**:

            Sal wrote: The scariest movie of 2015 wasn’t a horror movie. It was No Escape.

            I don’t want to put words in Sal’s mouth, but the phrase “wasn’t a horror movie” is indicative to me of how he views the film. Just because a movie is scary, or has scary or gruesome moments, does not mean it is a horror movie. One of the most terrifying and upsetting films I’ve seen in the last five years is THE ACT OF KILLING, a film I know you’ve also seen. Would you call that movie horror? I certainly would not, yet it was one of the scariest, most chilling films I can recall.

            I’m not a student of film or anything, but I believe there is a lot more that goes into defining genre than just surface elements like “scary moments.” Primarily, the structure of a movie heavily influences genre classification. You, Josh and Dave talk about it on HMP all the time, how there are certain movies that may not be all that scary, but are definitely horror because of how they’re structured. That structure conveys the “feeling” of the film, and what the filmmaker intended the audience to get from the experience. Then, you have the tone of the film. Tone has many contributing factors – sound, staging and lighting, to name a few. These are all elements that, to me, have much more to do with genre classification than just the content of a film or specific occurrences.

            And, speaking of specific occurrences, you mentioned the following in reference to NO ESCAPE:

            Jason wrote: People getting murdered, ruthlessly and brutally. Execution-style. This is “No Escape.” How is that different from the description of a horror film?

            I can think of literally hundreds of movies I’ve seen with these exact same elements, yet no one (not even you) would consider them horror. The first one that comes to mind is SCHINDLER’S LIST, which has “people getting murdered, ruthlessly and brutally… Execution-style” but is definitely not a horror movie. Another that comes to mind is INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS, which even goes full monty by showing us graphic executions – blood, guts and all…

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=isVwqPyxLM8

            But, would you call INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS a horror movie? Similarly, most war movies contain these specific elements (or occurrences), yet no one is likely to ever consider them horror.

            I have not yet seen NO ESCAPE, so, to be fair, I cannot speak directly to the structure or tone of that film. But, judging by the trailers and reception of the film, I’m willing to bet it is not structured as, nor tonally like, a horror movie. And, again, not to put words in Sal’s mouth, but I imagine this is the case and is why he explicitly said it is not a horror movie (despite being scary).

            As for BONE TOMAHAWK, you should already know that I consider it horror since it appeared on my top 10 horror of 2015 list. That said, it is definitely light on horror, in my opinion. That movie, at its core, is a western film. That’s how it is structured, and certainly how it feels. But there are certain structural and tonal elements that point to horror, aside from just the cannibal tribe. I’m thinking specifically of the night scenes early on in the film when the cannibal tribe is marauding through town. Those, to me, were genuinely scary and structured like a horror film. So, yes, I do consider BONE TOMAHAWK to be horror – second at best, way behind western. I just had to rib you about it because of your seemingly arbitrary way (to me) of classifying horror.

            Truthfully, though, how we classify films is very much a subjective practice, so whatever works best for the individual is how they should classify films. I just see inherent problems with your argument. Really, it’s a logic issue. You’re making it a transitive relation, when it’s not. In other words, you’re saying that if:

            NO ESCAPE has ‘these elements,’ and
            ‘these elements’ are found in horror movies, then
            NO ESCAPE is a horror movie

            While the logical form of your argument is sound (i.e. A=B and B=C so A=C), it is not actually a valid argument because your second premise is not true. Namely, while ‘these elements’ may be found in horror movies, they do not **equal** (or, define) horror movies. And that’s what you need for your second premise to be true – you need ‘these elements’ to define horror.

            But, again, whatever works for you is totally fine. It just becomes bothersome when you, in turn, call a movie that is classically horror in structure and tone, like GOODNIGHT MOMMY or CRIMSON PEAK, “not really a horror movie.”

            And this concludes my writing of the New Testament.

          • Dino: “I don’t want to put words in Sal’s mouth, but the phrase “wasn’t a horror movie” is indicative to me of how he views the film. Just because a movie is scary, or has scary or gruesome moments, does not mean it is a horror movie.”

            I would not consider No Escape a horror movie by any stretch of means. Had I watched No Escape prior to sending in my HMP Top 10 list, it wouldn’t have made the list. I wouldn’t consider a movie like We Need to Talk About Kevin or films like it to be horror, but it’s still a terrifying concept.

            I think there is a clear difference between a horror movie and a movie with a horrifying concept.

          • I hate to be a naysayer here (and I hate to invoke J’s ire – since I respect all of his other Top 10 choices) but:

            I started watching “No Escape” last night and had to give up after 50 minutes. Perhaps I’ll go back and finish it tonight, but I’m dubious as to whether the last half will change my initial impressions – and

            First, the good things: yes, it’s tense and frightening – and the acting from Owen Wilson, Lake Bell, and Pierce Brosnan is solid.

            Unfortunately, the bad things: it’s premise is not based on anything that has ever remotely happened in reality, and it’s more than a little racist and culturally insensitive. Imagine “Hostel” meets “The Mask of Fu Manchu.” Given these things, it’s not too hard to understand why this movie was banned in Cambodia.

            Now I get that this is fictional, but as someone that has spent a lot of time all around Southeast Asia among the, for the most part, incredibly warm and friendly people, it’s rather disconcerting that, at least by half way through the movie, NO Asian people are actually real, rounded characters in the story, and the only ones we’ve been introduced to for more than a second or two are either:

            ** MINOR SPOILERS HERE **
            .. a stoic, dispassionate bodyguard.
            .. a scar-faced, bloodthirsty killer.
            .. a funny, Kenny Rogers-idolizing goof.
            ** END OF SPOILERS **

            I will refrain from rating this at the moment, since I’ve yet to watch the whole thing, but for me, that slightly nauseous and anxious feeling that the film induced had less to do with the fictional peril of Wilson’s children than it did with the Americentric xenophobia that the film so aggressively and exuberantly taps into.

  7. I’m a follower, so:

    10. The Martian (9.5/10)
    As a big Ridley Scott fan, I had very high expectations for this. For the most part, it delivered in spades. The drama was engaging, the action was thrilling, the direction was impeccable as always, but the real standout of the movie was Matt Damon’s performance. He was funny, intelligent, emotional, and extremely likable (as always). Not my favorite Ridley Scott film, but a rock solid entry in his excellent filmography.

    9. The Wolfpack (9.5/10)
    An emotional and somewhat disturbing documentary about a group of kids who were kept in confinement by their father for much of their lives. As we learn their story and who they are, we discover that they’re just movie lovers like us. As heartbreaking as it is entertaining, the story of the kids reaches a satisfying conclusion that makes me anxious to see if they’ll manage to leave a mark in the cinema just as the cinema has left a mark in their lives.

    8. Mad Max: Fury Road (9.5/10)
    Technically speaking, the most impressive movie of the year. As far as visual spectacle goes, it’s unmatched by any movie this year. That’s not to say that that’s all the movie has to offer. There is plenty to like here. From the world it creates, to the characters that inhabit it, to the story it tells—and yes, there is a story here—it’s all of ambitious and epic to say the least.

    7. Kumiko the Treasure Hunter (10/10)
    In a year full of visual eye candy, it was nice to have a film that was visually impressive but small, quiet, and intimate. Funny, witty, and poignant—Kumiko may not have had a big budget, but it had a big heart.

    6. Sicario (10/10)
    The most visceral movie of the year. It’s taut, tense, suspenseful and not for the faint of heart. Whether or not Sicario paints an accurate picture of the drug war going on in México is up for debate, but it tells a hard truth that many may not be ready to believe just yet. Things aren’t white and black anymore. They haven’t been for a long time. And sometimes, a compromise has to be met in order to achieve the lightest shade of gray.

    5. Ex Machina (10/10)
    The most intelligent sci-fi movie of the year also happens to be the scariest. Ex Machina slowly answers the question of “what if machines gained consciousness?” Sometimes the question is scarier than the answer. In this case, the answer is much scarier than the question.

    4. Chappie (10/10)
    Set on the opposite extreme of Ex Machina , Chappie asks the hard questions but answers them in a more ambiguous way and with a more positive set of mind. Though not as intelligent or refined as its counterpart, the film makes up for its missteps with a layered and extremely likable lead character that has heart to spare.

    3. It Follows (10/10)
    Few horror movies have left such a big impact as It Follows has. It not only managed to be scary and tense, but it felt fresh, new, and exciting in ways that no other horror movie for a very long time has been able to do.

    2. Star Wars Episode VIII: The Force Awakens (10/10)
    The new film in the Star Wars saga continues with an installment that is arguably as great as any of the entries in the original trilogy and leagues above the lackluster prequels. It’s everything a Star Wars movie should be and everything Star Wars fans have been asking for. The Force Awakens finally brings balance to a beloved franchise that was in much need of a proper reboot.

    1. The Hateful Eight (10/10)
    Probably the most Tarantino movie that also plays the least like a Tarantino movie. The Hateful Eight is more mature and controlled than the rest of the director’s work. The pacing is a lot more taut and the filmmaking craft is taken to new levels. There is a lot of visual and aural candy with equal amounts of visceral violence to balance things out. Underneath it all though, there is a very strong social commentary. It’s raw and unforgiving, which may put some people off, but it rings true and most importantly (and sadly), it’s relevant to our times. At over three hours, The Hateful Eight is not for everyone. It’s the least accessible film from Tarantino, but also quite possibly his best. And that is quite the feat in and of itself.

    Honorable Mentions:
    1. Cop Car
    2. The Stanford Prison Experiment
    3. Animals
    4. Blind
    5. Victoria

    Worst Movies of the Year:
    Final Girl (not to be confused with The Final Girls)

    Biggest Dissapointment:
    Slow West

    • We should all just pretend Final Girl doesn’t exist. It’s caused far too much confusion over the last few months.

      • I’d be fine with completely erasing it from my mind and from existence altogether. What a piece of crap that was. I can’t believe Wes Bentley was involved in that.

  8. Hateful Eight… trying to be vague about specifics…

    A lot to like in various moments and characters, but I didn’t really love it as a whole. It seems like an obvious knock to say it’s too long for what it is, when it’s a three hour movie, but I actually liked the very slow-paced first half or so a lot better than the later part. So it wasn’t necessarily the slow pacing or length, per se… more a matter of what you get out of that length, which felt diminishing. There’s a particular section about 2/3 into the film that seemed unnecessarily long for what it ends up showing you, where I think a montage or quicker scene would have been better. That broke me away for too long from where things had been building, and then couldn’t quite return with the same momentum.

    The plot was intriguing early on, but had a pivotal moment that kind of felt like a cheat. (And also some unexpected moments that played well, so that was good.) Reminded me most of Reservoir Dogs, in terms of Tarantino work, but Reservoir Dogs was much more efficient, while covering some of the same dramatic points and paranoia/tension. The score was wonderful, and the cast was excellent. To say that Samuel L. Jackson and Kurt Russell had some great moments and dialogue feels like a “well duh” kind of thing, but I especially liked Bruce Dern in his role as an old Confederate general, and Jennifer Jason-Leigh as the captured criminal on her way to be hanged.

    Would be a 7/10 for me.

    • Eh, I’ll say 7.5.

      But how’s this for a stinker… I had mentioned before about having planned to drive to Portland, OR, to see the 70mm version, but the plans fell through. That would have been on Monday. Apparently, Tarantino showed up at that Portland theater for a few of the Monday showings and was hanging out and answering questions. D’oh!

    • To be fair, since I didn’t see the 70mm version, the intermission may have helped in terms of better appreciating the piece as a whole, whereas “Act 2” coming right after “Act 1” seemed to throw things off a bit for me from the momentum of where it was heading.

      Thinking about it more, this film also reminds me of the opening interrogation scene and tavern scene of Inglorious Basterds. And those may be the best scenes of any Tarantino film. But here, stretching it all out and not paying it off as well.

      Eh, there’s a lot more I would like to discuss about this movie, good and bad, but I’ll wait until next week’s review thread. And it’s possible that I’ll appreciate this more seeing it a second time without any “critical eyes,” as was the case for Force Awakens, which jumped from 8.5 to 9.5 on the second viewing. But at this point, it’ll have to wait until DVD, which hopefully includes the full version (and of course, I can always provide my own intermission, via the pause button).

    • I’m not gonna lie, I’m a little bummed that you came in so low. But I have a feeling that this will grow on you over time and I’m just so happy that you finally went to see it.

      I concede your point about the film being a tad long, but I disagree that the section of the movie you’re referring to (which I assume is the flashback), detracts from the film. It isn’t necessary, but it’s almost like a reward for being so patient with the slower first half. And it’s quite devastating to see how the events unfolded after having heard so much about the people from that place. You’re correct in that the intermission made for a better experience. It gave one time to think and let everything simmer for a few moments right before heading into the eye of the storm, so to speak. For me, the first half was a slow and tense ride up a roller coaster while the second half was the way down. I would’ve been fine with the movie comprising entirely of a slow and tense ride up, but I really appreciated the second half after all the build up that was done. If I had to compare the movie to some of Tarantino’s previous works, I’d say this borrows a lot from Reservoir Dogs more than any of his other films. I’ve been watching interviews he’s done about The Hateful Eight and one of the things that I really liked about his process is that he made everyone come over to his house to watch The Thing. He expressed to the actors that he wanted to reach a similar level of isolation and distrust amongst the characters. That’s such an awesome movie to draw inspiration from. He gets extra kudos for that. Anyway, I feel like talking about the film without citing anything from within it is not really making our thoughts as clear as they could be. I’d love to continue the conversation once the review is posted. But I just wanted to post some quick thoughts. I think I’m watching it again sometime this weekend, so I’ll have it fresh in my mind.

      Bummer! I would’ve loved to have heard the Q&A.

      • I loved the flashback scene. There’s a significant quiet point where the tension is raising and you’re just waiting for the big event to happen. That ended up being one of my favorite moments in the movie.

  9. In what will likely be my final movie of 2015, I watched Jay’s #1 pick of No Escape.

    While I don’t agree that it’s the #1 movie of the year, nor would it be in my top 10, I can completely understand where Jay’s coming from by ranking it at #1. Having kids right around the ages of the daughters in the movie likely makes it a far more powerful movie to endure. With being said, I did really enjoy it. There’s a lot of tension and suspense. Perhaps the strongest strength is the realism. This is where my biggest compliment of the movie goes.

    The scariest movie of 2015 wasn’t a horror movie. It was No Escape. This isn’t a movie about ghosts, a maniac who won’t stay dead, or some beastly freaks coming after you. With all of the awful events going on in the world this year, this feels like something that could really happen to someone visiting a foreign land. Mind you, it is important to remember that this is fiction and we should not be scared of leaving our homes. Terror can happen anywhere.

    This next part is where I’m hoping Jay or any other parents who have seen the movie will read. I got the impression that the big difference between a parent, like Jay, watching the film and a non parent, like myself, watching this, are the opinions of the daughters. There were multiple points in the film where I wanted to yell at the kids or slap them around for making too much noise. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I imagine a parent is a little more patient when it comes to these sort of troubles and it’s less of a “I want to strangle this kid” and more of a “I feel so bad for this child”. Mind you, I didn’t want anything to actually happen to the kids though. The kids being there is what made the film work. Without them, it’s just a typical chase film where everything is just a little easier. Since you can’t exactly just leave the kids behind, the tension and sense of dread is significantly higher. So what I’m asking is if parents watching this found the kids to be annoying or not.

    If there’s a weakness, it’s the lack of variety. From the moment the craziness begins, it’s a never ending chase and attempt at escaping. Admittedly, Mad Max: Fury Road, which I ranked high, is mostly just a big chase in one direction and a chase back the other way. However, that movie was more of a spectacle, had a variety of characters with different developed backstories, ect.

    I went back and forth on whether or not I wanted one of the family members to die. On one hand, an ending of everyone surviving has been done to death by Hollywood. On the other hand, an ending of someone dying may have been too depressing. Ultimately, without spoiling anything, I’m satisfied with what they did.

    For me, the most emotional scene was Lucy’s birth story. There may have been some dust in my eyes at the “You may want to turn off the camera” line.

    Overall, I’d give it 8/10. It’s a thrill ride that relies on realism to carry the natural scares. Much like 2006’s Hard Candy, it’s a non-horror film that ends up being scarier than any of the horror films released in the year.

    My recommendation is to buy the Blu-Ray. If you buy it from Amazon, you’ll get a free pass to see The Hateful Eight*. SCORE!

    Looks like Amazon is offering that for several Blu-Rays including No Escape, Django Unchained, Snowpiercer, It Follows, Horns, St. Vincent, Southpaw, Everly, The Imitation Game, ect.

    • What’s really interesting — fascinating, actually — to me was your comment about the kids’ behavior in this movie…

      Actually, one of my (few) criticisms of the film was the realism of the children’s behavior. I have kids who are 7 and 4, and I’m telling you right now: If we were in this situation, we’d all be dead, because there’s no way to keep kids quiet — especially upset children. So, I actually thought these kids were surprisingly quiet and uncharacteristically not annoying, compared to how real kids would act in this situation.

      Honestly, as I wondered how I’d survive this situation with my kids while watching the film, I could only think that our only true hope of survival would be to render the children unconscious — a horrifying thought in and of itself, because that would be a very delicate procedure…

      I’m honored that you watched it, Sal. You and Jonathan are at the top of my “good list.” : )

      Thanks,
      J

      • I have zero problem in admitting I would not survive a movie like this. Ha I’d probably end up dying while screaming like a little girl.

        The whole idea of rendering your children unconscious sounds like a good idea in theory in terms of keeping them quiet, but then you have these fifty pound human beings to carry around at all times. Not only is it riskier since you can’t always be on high alert, but you’re only exerting more energy, which isn’t going to help anything.

        Truthfully, I think the only possible way I could survive the events of this movie is if I managed to understand what was going on and escaped the country early on into the situation. For example, had Owen Wilson opted to be the worst husband/father ever and instead of going back to the hotel for his family, he just ran for the border.

  10. Loved the show – excellent as always. This year I for once have actually seen a few of the movies that are on the lists.

    First and foremost “No Escape”. I watched this film solely on MPWs recommendation and sat with my wife and I for a movie night at home. I have to say we both LOVED IT and again probably due to the fact that we have small children. So although not my favourite of the yesr it is certainly in my top ten. (9/10)

    I have also saw Hateful Eight which I loved though felt it was a little long (30 mins could have been trimmed and it still would have been an excellent movie) (8.5/10)

    I also really enjoyed the Big Short and I am glad I listened to Rob Booker before watching it as it helped me to understand it a bit better.I would give it an 8/10

    Another movie I saw recently that I would not have heard off if not for the rave reviews of MPW is Spolight. My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed this movie even though the subject matter was very unsettling. We are from Ireland where we have had our own scandals with the church. I would give this film 9.5/10

    One of my favourites of the year was Creed (I have to admit I am a Rocky nerd/geek). Loved the return to this franchise and would give it an 8.5/10.

    Also as a True Crime fan I loved Legend (Tom Hardy’s performance is amazing). I think this would be a must see for Jay. There was an earlier film from around 1990 (The Krays) about the same subject and it was excellent also. I would give Legend and The Krays both an 8/10.

    Unlike the MPW crew I really enjoyed Bridge of Spies (I know it was a little slow) bit I still really enjoyed it and would give it an 8/10.

    Sicario I liked well enough but not as much as the guys on here and would only give it a 7/10.

    Movies that have moved to the top of my list after this show
    1) Bone Tomahawk (really need to watch this)
    2) The Martian
    3) The Gift
    4) Ex Machina
    5) The Walk

    I just want to take this time to think all the Guys for their continued hard work and wanted you all to know how appreciated you all are. Looking forward to more great movie reviews in 2016.

    Thanks again
    Gerard

    • quick update just saw the Martian last night and agree with all the guys, It was amazing 9.5/10

      loved it

      trying to talk my wife into watching Bone Tomhahawk tonight but not getting too far lol

  11. Jason,

    Happy New Years to you and the crew. I love this show. I actually have only been listening since the week you reviewed Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. I was looking for a movie podcast to listen to, yours was the first one I came across, and I didn’t look further. I love the realism you guys bring to movies and how down to earth you are when you review them. I don’t tend to read movie a lot of critics reviews because I feel most critics are too harsh on every little detail and if it’s not perfect to them, it apparently sucks. Not you guys though. I enjoy listening and take your recommendations seriously. I pride myself on being “The Movie Guy” within my group of friends and family, but have still yet to watch some of the most important and greatest films ever. That is actually one of my New Years resolutions this year is to watch more of those movies along with this coming year’s great films. I look forward to my first full year with you guys and your guidance to make sure I watch every film I need to watch in 2016.

    P.S. Thanks to Andy for putting The Lego Movie in his top 5 of all time. Joke or not, that is my number 2 of all time. I am a little biased because of my love for Legos, but I just think that that movie was so perfectly done and can be re-watched countless times and still laugh and catch jokes you missed the previous viewings. I think it got screwed at the Oscars for best animated feature. Just my opinion. Again thanks for everything

    Brandon from Tampa, FL

  12. I saw The Hateful Eight a second time today and it was even better because I got to sit back and actually study it and god damn…it is a masterpiece

  13. Thanks for another thoroughly entertaining podcast, guys, and for all the work you put into it (especially J) over the entire year.

    In terms of the various BMOTY picks, I would argue the following:

    The viewers chose their CMOTY: Crashiest Movie of the Year

    Karl chose his EMOTY: Entertainiest Movie of the Year

    J chose his GMOTY: Grippiest Movie of the Year

    Ryan chose his VMOTY: Visceraliest Movie of the Year

    But only Andy chose a real BMOTY: a movie which, while not crashy, is entertaining, gripping, and visceral, and successfully and elegantly achieves it’s goals with virtually zero bad/stupid acting, writing, characters, character actions, subplots, or musical montages (Full disclaimer: I’ve yet to see Sicario, so it is perhaps entitled to the believed BMOTY status as well).

    All of this, of course, is totally unrelated to the fact that I happen to choose the same BMOTY as Andy :)

  14. Hey, Vance!!!

    Where’s Vance?

    I wanted to say how much I liked the quote of your review of Mad Max that Jay read this week. Well said.

    Vance! Vance! Do you regularly review movies anywhere that I can read? Is anybody here using “Letterboxd”?

  15. Jay! I can’t believe that you’re lying to the listeners (yourself?) about The Hateful 8 not being available in 2015. It was in all Cinemark and Megaplex theaters in Provo, Orem and SLC on the 30th! Come on, man!

          • I don’t have a podcast outlet that fits this sort of film anymore. I will leave a review here with everybody else, I guess. Or talk about it when it’s streaming. 😉

          • Of course you do. You’re still an official guest according to Jay. I know you’ve dropped by for guest appearances, but how about doing it more often? Perhaps when they review a movie you’re really interested in? You’re missed around these parts, man ?

    • Josh,
      That week (when it was time to purchase tickets — the Wednesday before the Friday release), I scoured all the local theaters as I usually do, because “The Hateful Eight” was my No. 1 priority (above “The Big Short,” even). And it was not available anywhere…

      Now, obviously — or perhaps — the local exhibitors added Tarantino’s film to their theaters late, but at the time I purchased my ticket, it was not available at any of the theaters I checked.

      It doesn’t matter, though. I haven’t begrudged anyone from having it on their 2015 list. I don’t disregard listener picks that I think are a different year. But when it comes to my own list, I have to go with what’s available. And that’s that.

      By the way, I love “The Hateful Eight.” Review is coming in MPW Ep. 171.

      J

      • Jay, it makes me so happy to hear that you loved The Hateful Eight. Then again, when we translate love using your rating scale, that probably amounts to a 7. I’m a little worried though, because you and Josh don’t usually agree on movies. That plus his lack of enthusiasm on Twitter leads me to believe that Josh wasn’t all too pleased. I guess time will tell.

  16. By the way, attention all MPW Listenership:

    I have been dying to talk about “Making a Murderer,” the 10-hour documentary series that’s currently streaming on Netflix Watch Instantly in the U.S.

    Our holiday / Top 10 release schedule has prevented me from talking about it, but I was dying to have “the scoop” on it and reveal it as “breaking news” on MPW. I love to find hidden gems and recommend them to people, but it turns out, within the past couple of weeks, the ENTIRE WORLD and Internet has also discovered it and scooped my story!

    If I had finished it all before our Top 10 show, it probably would have made my Top 10 list for 2015.

    Anyway, I’m going to Mini Review it tonight for Ep. 171 of MPW (no spoilers), but in the meantime, I recommend that everyone start watching it. Just make sure you have 10 hours because you’ll binge-watch it. Oh, and it will make you angry…

    Listen for my (spoiler-free) review this Wednesday in Ep. 171.

    Thanks!
    J

    P.S. I found it first. Before any of these other posers on the Internet, dammit! ha ha

    • Yes, Making a Murderer is amazing, frustrating, fascinating, terrible, and all kinds of other adjectives. I remember hearing a lot of hype for NPR’s Serial podcast series, so I listened to that on a long drive last year and it was pretty good, but this series is about a hundred times more interesting, more nuanced and layered, more confounding and unnerving, and more difficult to draw a judgment from.

      I’d love to discuss some aspects of that, but I’ll wait for the next episode thread.

    • Yes, MAKING A MURDERER is a pretty riveting documentary series. Glad to hear you’ll be covering it on the show; I tried to get Josh to cover THE JINX over on MSC last year, to no avail.

    • On a side note, both MAKING A MURDERER and THE JINX are absolutely terrifying in their own right – scary in how the justice system can unduly ruin someone’s life and what humans are capable of, respectively.

      Had you finished them on time, they might have been contenders to top your top 10 horror of 2015 list, too!

      • True dat. Of course, The Jinx shows the opposite sense of justice than Making a Murderer, as far as the difference of one’s means. I’m trying to be vague about that, but you know what I mean, right, Dino?

  17. And sorry J, but I watched it two weeks ago. :) The first thing I’ve binge-watched (over two days) in a long time. I probably would have mentioned it before, but I think of it more as a TV series than a movie.

  18. In a similar vein, The Jinx is a really interesting series, and sort of a bizarro parallel to Making a Murderer in a way. But I would recommend checking that series out, J, if you liked MaM. MaM has more depth, overall, I’d say, but the Robert Durst story is similarly fascinating and maddening, and has a heck of a wow ending.

    • Yes, I’m familiar with “The Jinx” and “Serial,” as well. Many people now have made comparisons and mentioned them together.

      I try to bring something new to the table, often to no avail, but I have something very controversial (and probably scorn-worthy to say) in Ep. 171 when I discuss “Making a Murderer.” Don’t worry, it’s a theory I can float without revealing any spoilers…

      I will await everyone’s condemnation. ha ha

      J

      • I’m probably outside of the norm on that, as well, in that I think that…

        ————————
        (SPOILER-ISH!!!!)
        ————————

        …the person in question may have indeed done what they were accused of, just not in the way they were accused of it, and they still may have been railroaded for it, with some of the evidence planted. So they were guilty, but still should have been found “not guilty” based on the extenuating factors. Ah, it’s hard to say for sure. Some really screwy things going on, though, in many respects. Which is what makes the story so fascinating and provocative. I couldn’t believe how many layers of interesting things were involved, which is why I think it’s light years beyond Serial.

        But I’ve been following some Reddit boards and other forums about the show, and that view puts me in the minority (most people think he was completely innocent and it was a complete frame-up). So I’m curious if that’s what you’re thinking, too, J. If so, no scorn from me (and I’ve heaped enough on you lately for other crimes). :o)

  19. I’m looking forward to the anticipated Tarantino discussion goodness following this week’s episode. I hope everyone is readying their “Tarantino movies ranked” list. I still need to watch KILL BILL and JACKIE BROWN in order to have a complete picture.

    • You got it, Dino! We’re about to record in T-minus 8 minutes… I have my QT filmography ranked. I hope everyone else here puts up their rankings in the show notes for Ep. 171.
      J

    • I just found out that Kill Bill (1 and 2) is on Netflix. I need to squeeze at least the first part in tonight. That’s the only one I haven’t seen. Although, I only saw Jackie Brown once in the theater when it came out… I remember I really liked it, but it will probably end up being my lowest ranked right now only because I have no recollection to be able to compare it well enough to everything else.

      By the way, when they advertise Hateful Eight as the 8th Tarantino movie, are they counting Kill Bill as two movies, or counting that as one and including Death Proof as one? If so, then that’s another one I haven’t seen. I suppose it must be the latter, as I just looked up Death Proof and it shows written/directed by Tarantino. Hmm, for some reason I thought he had done the screenplay only, or only produced it, or something. So then the eight would be Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown, Kill Bill (1-2), Death Proof, Inglorious Basterds, Django Unchained and Hateful Eight.

      • BINGO!

        Kill Bill was originally one movie that was then split in two due to its length (over 4 hours!). But it was conceived as one movie, as far as I know.

      • Netflix actually has five of the eight streaming in the US, currently:

        RESERVOIR DOGS
        PULP FICTION
        KILL BILL (vols. 1 and 2)
        INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS
        DJANGO UNCHAINED

        All you’re missing is JACKIE BROWN, DEATH PROOF and THE HATEFUL EIGHT.

        As a bonus, they even have FROM DUSK ‘TILL DAWN streaming, which is about half a Tarantino film.

        • Yeah, I’ve seen Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction multiple times, and Basterds and Django within the last year or two, so really it’s Jackie Brown that I’d need to see again to get a better sense of its place in the canon. And of course, Kill Bill and Death Proof.

          I see that Death Proof is available to rent various places online for $2.99, so I’ll try to watch that and at least the first volume of Kill Bill in the next day or two, so I can more properly join in the conversation and rankings.

          • I watched Vol. 1 of Kill Bill last night, and the intro of Vol. 2. Amazing. I loved it. Vol. 2 would really have to fail in a big way to lower my rating of that. So at this point, I’m gonna watch Death Proof today and finish Vol. 2 another time.

        • Death Proof was also meant to be seen together with Planet Terror. Both are standalone movies that don’t necessarily need to be seen together in order to appreciate, but they do provide a different experience when seen back to back. This shouldn’t affect your ranking of the films but I think it’s worth mentioning in case anyone wants to get the experience as intended by both Tarantino and Rodriguez.

          I’ve got my list ready. I’m dying to see everyone else’s.

          • I’m curious as to why you never got to see Kill Bill. I thought you said you were a big martial arts movie fan. Or did I dream all of this?

          • There’s no real reason, just one of those movies I never had the pleasure of seeing. I did start watching it sometime earlier this year, but I was tired and couldn’t get into it so turned it off about 15 minutes in.

            And, you did not dream it, I am a fan of martial arts movies.

          • Ah, gotcha.

            In that case you really do need to see Kill Bill. It’s a must, particularly if you’re a fan of the genre.

          • Anyone seen Kung Fury on Netflix….a fun little throw-back to 90s video games and bad kung-fu flicks. It’s short and worth a watch for a chuckle. I’d say it’s as if Danger5 and Street Fighter (sega Genesis version) had a weird little baby movie. Sorry to be brief…love all the comments in this episodes section!!! :-)

          • Gomez, Kung Fury was awesome! It should’ve been on my honorable mentions. I completely forgot about it. Man, what an awesome movie. If you’re a child of the ’80s you’ll really appreciate this. Like Turbo Kid, this is a love letter to that era, but on steroids.

  20. I’m glad Room made it into the listeners’ top 10, and I strongly encourage MPW to check it out. One of the most genuinely moving films I’ve seen in a long time.

    • Emily — Thanks to you and a few other listeners, “Room” is at the top of my list. As soon as I’m able to watch it, I definitely will. I’ll let you know my 2 cents. (You know I will. ha ha).
      J

      • J what are your must movies to see before the oscars? Finally saw Bone Tomahawk I give it a 7 and has to be one of the most violent kills in cinema history!

      • Why is it a penny for your thoughts, but then you put your two cents in? Somebody is making a penny on that exchange! I wonder if I can get in on some kind of credit default swaps on that deal. ;o)

    • I’ve probably annoyed J with my repeated urgings to see that movie. I wonder if it may get a negative backlash if it doesn’t end up being the *Best Movie Of All Time.*

      But it occurred to me today that I’m actually a little hesitant about seeing it again. I really want my girls to see it, so I definitely will watch it again, but I almost feel like that was such a beautiful and powerful experience when I saw it in the theater that it may not live up to that same feeling again. Anyway, I’ll find out in a few months when it’s on DVD, or if it ever makes its way to a theater where I live.

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