Movie Podcast Weekly Ep. 072: The Monuments Men (2014) and The Lego Movie (2014) and Cold Comes the Night (2014)

This is Episode 072 of Movie Podcast Weekly. Thanks for joining us. This week your four intrepid hosts review “The Monuments Men,” “The Lego Movie” and “Cold Comes the Night.” Andy and Josh also take the time to weigh in on the loss of Philip Seymour Hoffmann, and Jason acknowledges (belatedly) last year’s loss of film critic legend Stanley Kauffmann of The New Republic. Also in Episode 072, Josh dons brand-new bumper music for his Continuing Education segment and announces our addition to Stitcher. Don’t miss it!

Movie Podcast Weekly features four hosts (and frequent guests), who give you their verdict on at least one new movie release that’s currently in theaters, mini-reviews of what they’ve been watching lately, and specialty recommendation segments. New episodes release every single Monday.

SHOW NOTES
I. Intro
— The latest shenanigans of Shia LaBeouf
— Josh and Andy’s thoughts on Philip Seymour Hoffmann
— Movie Podcast Weekly is now on Stitcher!

II. Mini Reviews
Jason: The loss of film critic Stanley Kauffmann, The Jungle Book
Josh: Drinking Buddies, Pacific Rim
Andy: All the Boys Love Mandy Lane, The House of the Devil, Stand Up Guys, The Last Stand, Shadow of a Doubt, You’re Next, Closed Circuit, Snitch, Exporting Raymond, I Think We’re Alone Now
Karl: Robot & Frank, Charlie Wilson’s War

III. Feature Review: THE MONUMENTS MEN (2014)
Jason: 5.5 ( Rental )
Andy: 7.5 ( High-priority Rental )
Josh: 8 ( Buy it! )

IV. Feature Review: THE LEGO MOVIE (2014)
Jason: 6.5 ( Rental for Adults / Buy It For Your Kids )
Andy: 10 ( See It In the Theater / Buy it! )
Josh: 8 ( See It In 3D with Your Kids / Buy It For Your Kids )

V. Feature Review: COLD COMES THE NIGHT (2014)
Jason: 7 ( Rental )

VI. Genre Recommendation Segments

JOSH’S CONTINUING EDUCATION:
Documentary: 20 Feet From Stardom (2013)

ANDY’S ABSURD ASSOCIATIONS:
Andy’s Favorite PSH Movies:
1. The Boat That Rocked (aka Pirate Radio) (2009)
2. Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead (2007)

JAY OF THE DEAD’S CREEPS AND CRIME:
Crime: Rope (1948)

ROBOTIC ROMANCES WITH KARL HUDDLESTON:
Sci-Fi: Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)

VII. Wrap-Up
— Upstream Color and listener feedback

NEXT WEEK’S MOVIE: RoboCop

Links for this episode:

NEW! Remember to add Movie Podcast Weekly to your Stitcher playlist here: Stitcher.com

Better than Josh’s initial recommendation on the show, check out a remix of two Terry Gross interviews of Philip Seymour Hoffman on Fresh Air. Very compelling stuff: NPR.org

Watch Karl’s recommendation of George Clooney and Grant Heslov talking with Charlie Rose here: Hulu.com

Watch the “Adult Fans of Lego” short doc that Josh recommends for free on YouTube: AFOL: A Blockumentary

Jason says to check out his wife (and Andy’s wife) discussing books here: Book Review Podcast

Jason talks pop culture: The Donut Show

Jason and Josh, especially for horror fans: Horror Movie Podcast

Josh covers streaming movies: Movie Stream Cast

Follow Movie Podcast Weekly on Twitter: @MovieCastWeekly

Special thanks goes out to singer-songwriter Frederick Ingram and the Blue Claw Philharmonic for the use of their music and the voice talents of Midnight Corey Graham from The Electric Chair Podcast, Willis Wheeler from the Terror Troop Podcast and Spike Real for their help with our recommendation segment intros.

We’d also like to thank The Dave Eaton Element and Dave Eaton himself for the use of his music for our theme song.

If you like what we do here at 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.

You can always contact us by e-mailing MoviePodcastWeekly@gmail.com. Or you can call and leave us a voice mail at: (801) 382-8789. And you can leave us a comment in the show notes for this episode.

Thank you for listening, and join us again next Monday for Movie Podcast Weekly.

42 thoughts on “Movie Podcast Weekly Ep. 072: The Monuments Men (2014) and The Lego Movie (2014) and Cold Comes the Night (2014)

  1. Hey guys, in case you don’t remember it’s Martin from Germany :-)
    I am happy to report, that I’ve now made it through all the episodes of MPW despite all the Paul Walker jokes and offending comments about Germans (you know, Schindler’s List is a movie that Germans wouldn’t like and so on) courtesy of our beloved Andy Howell. Therefore I am probably gonna leave a comment from time to time, when I feel like I have something to say.
    So here we go: On Alfred Hitchcock’s “Rope”. Jason, you said it’s like a stage play. I don’t get what’s wrong with that. In my opinion in a play you get very pure acting and storytelling in a very condensed form. Don’t you think that sort of adds to the tension? What do you think about Roman Polanski’s “Carnage” then? That is one of my favorite movies from recent years.
    Maybe Polanski would be the one who could pull off a remake of Rope. He already did several play-like movies, Venus in Fur is another one. I don’t see a US release date for that one on IMDB so maybe you never heard about that.
    Weren’t there some copyright issues with Rope and several other Hitchcock movies? So from a legal standpoint can they actually remake this one?

    • Hi Martin,
      Yikes… Yes, we frequently forget that we have an international audience and our foolish and misguided ethnocentrism shows through… Just try to remember that on more than one occasion, Karl and I have said our favorite line from “Valkyrie” is “We have to show the world that not all of us are like him.” And a sincere and warm congrats to Germany on two gold medals so far!

      I mentioned that “Rope” is filmed like a stage play mostly for the listeners’ information, so they would know what to expect. But for me personally, even though I’m obsessed with the cinema; I despise plays. I hate theater. I know — it’s crazy! But I can barely stomach stage performances. I don’t know if I dated too many (crazy) thespians or if plays grate against my love for the true-to-life appearance (aka verisimilitude) of the cinema. And I haven’t seen “Carnage.” And it sounds like you might be onto something with the copyright issues. Thanks for writing!
      Jason

      • Yes Jason, I do remember you and Karl saying that and I agree with you that it’s a powerful line. And I understand that it was a joke and have no hard feelings about it. I’m still here as you can see :-)
        There was one thing in particular that Valkyrie depicted very well and that is the pain you feel as a German when you see your country in that dark state. It is so scary to even think of it.
        But let’s not get to depressed here. I recommend checking out Carnage even if you don’t like plays. At the very least you get four excellent actors and actresses doing what they do best. And if you don’t like it… it’s only like 80 minutes long.

    • Martin! Good to hear from you. Looking forward to your future comments. I’ve spent a lot of time in Germany, have a lot of German friends, and would never intentionally equate all Germans with Nazis. The unfortunate truth is, it is really easy to slip when you are talking about Nazi movies.

      As a huge fan of theater, I believe it offers something no other art for can. There is something powerful about being feet away from an actor performing. I’ve had that visceral experience on film sets as well and it is one of the fun things about working in movies, but the disposable nature of theater, the fact that the performance is happening right now, only once, they may mess up, they could perform it in any manner, and it is only happening this once … I find incredible, like going to watch a band play in concert. That is maybe neither here nor there in this conversation, except to say that I like plays. And so, I personally don’t mind movies that feel like plays either, particularly from Hitchcock (Dial M for Murder is my favorite such film), but I will say that as a huge fan of film, there are also things that only cinema can accomplish. Therefore, a movie that is subject to the same constraints of a play doesn’t make full use of cinematic tools and so, more often than not, loses a little of its shine. I think that’s a fair complaint. Take my example of Dial M for Murder. I absolutely love that film, but the Michael Douglas/Gwyneth Paltrow remake, A Perfect Murder is FAR more cinematic, sweeping, and beautiful to look at. Whether or not that actually makes it a better film is another discussion.

      • Wow Josh, how come you spent a lot of time in Germany? It seems like you visited every European country there is :-)

        I’ve seen Dial M for Murder and liked it very much. I guess I will have to watch the remake then. Since I am currently planing to watch a ton of Michael Douglas movies I haven’t seen before that probably will fit in my schedule anyway.
        How about you, Josh, have you seen Carnage?
        There is another one from France that’s pretty good too. I don’t know how it’s called in English but the French title was “Le prénom”. In the UK it was called “What’s in a name”. It’s basically about a group of friends getting together to celebrate one of the friends becoming a father. However later he reveals that they plan to name their child Adolph which is met with rather furious reactions.
        It’s not as good as Carnage or Dial M for Murder in my opinion and it’s more of a comedy and gets kind of ridiculous but I had fun watching it.

        • Martin, I’m putting Carnage on my list right now and I will look out for Le Prénom, though I haven’t heard of it. A Perfect Murder isn’t a masterpiece, but I do think it is quite good and sadly underrated. Fun to watch after Dial M… to note the (many) differences, as well.

          I love Europe, Martin. I’ve lived in The Netherlands and Belgium for years, Austria and Spain for extended periods of time, and traveled extensively in Germany, Switzerland, France, Italy, and briefly in Luxembourg. I know a lot of Germans from my time in The Netherlands, I have some German actor friends who we hired for a small indie film that I worked on in Austria, and there are several others who I met when filming some documentary footage in East Germany. Also, my wife’s little brother is a German major in college and made a lot of friends doing a study abroad there. We met them all and stayed with some of them while visiting. Randomly, I also once worked on an indie film here in Utah with Til Schweiger (not that he’d remember me), but I will be working with him again later this year.

          • That is very interesting. If you happen to be here anytime in the future, let me know and maybe we can go out to have some beer and bratwurst together 😀
            How is Til Schweiger in real life? In interviews he sometimes comes across pretty annoying. He’s probably one of the most debated actors (or people in general) over here. Some people really hate him. I don’t mind most of his performances though.
            What is it that you are working on with him?

            Oh can I still ask you a Sundance question? Have you heard about a movie called Wetlands? It was in theatres in Germany last year. I’m pretty sure it was at Sundance because I read an article saying that people who saw it there were pretty shocked by where it goes and what it shows.
            I saw it in theatres back in August and it has some pretty disgusting scenes but if you are able to see through all that it’s actually a good comedy-drama. It’s based on a book by Charlotte Roche but a lot of people said that the book is actually more pretentiously shocking while the movie is artistic. The director (David Wnendt – yes that’s Wnendt) has some skills in my opinion and some of the shots – especially a sequence of a skateboard trip on drugs through the subway stations of Berlin – are amazing too. It’s probably (no definitely) not for a wide American audience and would likely get an NC-17 rating but since you visited Sundance I wondered if you heard about it.

  2. Jay, don’t worry about the voicemail I sent regarding Upstream Color because the comments I made covered pretty much everything. Also, don’t worry about me getting all stabby with you; without you, I’d be pretty bored at work. Selfish, I know, but there it is.

    Carl, I was sober when I watched Upstream Color both times (by the way, I know you were only kidding). In my past experience as a younger man that kind of thing didn’t help me. I will watch a movie today that I believe I’ve never seen only to discover that yes, I watched it while under the influence. I’d just forgotten.

    I know what happened with the pig man, at least for the most part. But that’s because I watched the movie more than once.

    Andy, I wish I could watch Lego movie with you. After Jay said it was spastic, I now plan to crack an energy drink before I watch it.

    • Thank you, Hammer. Letterboxd is the site I was trying to think of as I blubbered through that segment. I couldn’t think of the name, even Googled it, and couldn’t come up with it. I’d def recommend Mubi or Letterboxd (for different reasons). I like the ranking aspect of Flickchart, but it is has some frustrating flaws and needs an update.

      • I have found myself re-watching particularly forgettable movies because I forgot that I had seen them before. I started tracking what I watched by using flixster/rotten tomatoes and submitting a rating for titles I’ve watched. Its saved me from re-watching stuff a couple times now.

  3. Jay, you aren’t really one of those people who think if you preface a statement by saying “With all due respect” or “No offense, but” you can then be as disrespectful or offensive as you want are you? :)

  4. Jason,

    Your crotchety review of The Lego Movie was the last straw! I listened to you frown on Wreck-it Ralph, Monsters University, and Despicable Me 2…I could see where you are coming from on those…mostly (I actually thought Monsters University was a pretty good sequel, more Toy Story 2 than Cars 2 for sure).

    But man! The Lego Movie was much better than 5.5! I haven’t laughed like that at a kids movie since Megamind. It was such a weird, hyperactive, quirky little film. And I thought the last act really pulled it altogether and made sense out of all the madness. I could easily see it getting a cult following in years to come. I can’t say it’s a 10/10. I think Josh gave it a fair score. I’d probably come in at a 7.5/10 myself.

    C’mon Jason, find that little kid inside and give him a hug!

    • Hi Vance,
      Your comment cracked me up. But 3 things:

      1.) I actually gave “The Lego Movie” a 6.5 out of 10 (only one full point below yours).

      And 2.) This link below will take you to a truly TERRIBLE review of “The Lego Movie”:
      http://eclipsemagazine.com/Movies/44240/
      Enjoy! You won’t believe your eyes…

      And 3.) I’m glad you enjoyed it so much. : )

      Thanks for writing.
      Jason

      • Well, I guess I really need to pay better attention to your Podcast and the show notes. I got your Lego score crossed with The Monuments Men (bummed to hear the low scores on that one BTW).

        Whoa, that reviewer on Eclipse Magazine…yikes. Talk about out of touch with the source material. She has “never owned a LEGO set” and doesn’t “have a particular affinity for the game” but enjoyed the “wry LEGO humor” that she has come to love from LEGO video games. What the heck?
        I think I can say honestly, and not just because her opinion differs from mine, that her review was the worst movie review I’ve read in a long time.

        The remaining question for you Jason, after seeing The Lego Movie, do you still give ‘the most colorful movie ever made’ award to Wreck it Ralph? The Lego Movie was pretty darn colorful.

        • The most colorful movie ever made is either Speed Racer or Spring Breakers. (Almost) all cartoons are colorful, but cartoon colors in the real(ish in SR’s case) world is something!

          • I just saw The Lego Movie today with my daughter and man…this one really spoke to me.

            I’d never had a Lego set of my own as a child. That will be rectified soon, since my inner child has not been put to rest.

            I’d watch this again right now and I just saw it 5 hours ago! And it seems that maybe Emmett is a bit like Andy. I know I have quite a lot in common with that little piece of plastic.

            It’s a 9!

    • Vance, you’re not alone among the listeners of this podcast. I have a deep, deep love of “Wreck-It Ralph,” my unqualified choice for best film of 2012. And “Monsters University” is a fabulous sequel to one of the more criminally undervalued Pixar films. “Toy Story 3” is the best Pixar sequel in my book (though “TS2” is no slouch, and both are better than the excellent but overpraised “Toy Story”), but “Monsters University” is far, far above the half-hearted mess of “Cars 2.”

      Also, speaking of movies that I really, really like, Josh is soooo right about “Tinker Tailor Solider Spy.” That’s my kind of espionage thriller. And also, as a sidenote, that might be the greatest cast of British actors ever gotten together for anything: Gary Oldman, John Hurt, Colin Firth, Ciaran Hinds, Toby Jones, Benedict Cumberbatch, Tom Hardy, Mark Strong, Simon McBurney, Stephen Graham and Christian McKay. Wow.

      Although I have to disagree with Josh (and Jason) about Shia LaBeouf. He’s a stiff, limited actor at best, but he’s a special kind of bad when he loses his way (or never gets a grip in the first place). I’m convinced he’d have drifted to the Hollywood fringe years ago if Steven Spielberg hadn’t been bound and determined to make him a star. It’s almost like Spielberg lost a bet, and the terms were, “Loser has to make a matinee idol out of Shia LaBeouf.”

      • Cody, glad to hear that we agree on Tinker…

        I absolutely agree with you about the quality of Monsters University, Toy Story 2-3 (in relation to the first), and the quality of Wreck it Ralph, as well. Personally, as a general non-fan of the genre, I think 2012 was a really fun year for animated movies. So many like Wreck it Ralph, Frankenweenie, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Brave (even Rise of the Guardians, The Pirates, and Hotel Transylvania) that I don’t mind watching with my kids. However, Paranorman is my pick for standing head and shoulders above the rest.

        As for Shia, I defy anyone to watch Season 2 of Project Greenlight and not have the same desire, that you attribute to Spielberg, of wanting to see the kid become a major movie star.

        • Interesting note about Project Greenlight. I’ve never seen any of that; I didn’t know that Shia had a connection. I thought he was fine in Holes, but haven’t really enjoyed him in anything since then.

          Lots of good animated films in 2012, for sure. I don’t consider myself a fan of animation in general, but I find that I end up liking quite a few animated films.

  5. Watched All Is Lost. I wasn’t buying most of what was going on. I know I, for one, would have been talking to myself outloud probably from the first moments on. Honestly I did pull an Andy but not until first concluding there was no way it would make my top 10. Enough Said was better and also at Redbox this week. I don’t know if I told you guys but I have tickets to AMC Theatres Best Picture Showcase, they show all 9 contenders, 4 on Sat. Feb 22 and the other 5 Sat. Mar. 1. Pretty excited for that. Also excited for a totally free 24-hour (26 or so, really) Philip Seymour Hoffman marathon at IU Cinema next Tuesday and Wednesday, not sure if I will get to go, but even if not, it’s an exciting idea. Disappointed Pirate Radio aka The Boat That Rocked isn’t part of it, but I’ve seen it.

  6. Never seen a single episode of “The Bachelor.” Jay is right, though: Without actually directly paying attention to any of them, I have “seen” almost every movie in the entire Barbie cinema canon. This is the consequence of having the family computer in the same room as the home theater. Also, I blame the mother-of-small-children friends of my wife’s who told her those movies were safe, adorable, harmless, clean, etc.

    What I really want to say, however, is WHAT is WRONG with you people?! How is “Up” *not* one of the finest movies Pixar has made? Also, I’m taking up for Andy here: A good movie is a good movie whether or not it’s animated. Being animated doesn’t automatically relegate a film to some lesser status where it can only be considered good “for its genre.” There are plenty of great animated films that are no more exclusively suitable for children than the latest dashed-off, slapped-together Adam Sandler comedy is exclusively suitable for adults. Jay, I know it’s mostly banter, but you wound me, brother, when you imply that watching and enjoying animated movies is somehow unworthy of someone who is “a grown-up.”

    • I took it that Jay was just saying The Lego Movie, and others he didn’t like, aren’t as worthy a film for grown-ups as a Toy Story. Not that all animated films are beneath adults.

    • I’m a grown up who loves animation and man, I hate that the Oscars have relegated the animated films to it’s own ‘best’ category. The Academy only did that because they’ll never give an animated film a Best Picture Oscar over any live action film!

      SNOBBERY.

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