Movie Podcast Weekly Ep. 168: Spotlight (2015) and In the Heart of the Sea (2015) and Goodnight Mommy (2015) and Landmine Goes Click (2015) and Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983)

Episode 168

Your hosts of Movie Podcast Weekly have finally reached the end of their reviews of the first six films of the STAR WARS FRANCHISE! So, in Episode 168, we bring you our Feature Review of Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983), with special guest Force Ghost Steve Hernandez.

We also bring you Feature Reviews of Spotlight and In the Heart of the Sea and Goodnight Mommy and Landmine Goes Click. Join us!

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.


I. Introduction / Miscellany
— Welcome back “Force Ghost Steve Hernandez” (because he’s dead to people)
Geek Cast Live Podcast reaches 100 episodes! (Congrats!)
— Redbox hits its 13-year anniversary
— Crazed “Walking Dead” fan bites Norman Reedus at zombie convention
Independence Day: Resurgence
X-Men: Apocalyspe trailer
Star Trek Beyond trailer
— Homework follow-up: Bone Tomahawk, The Shrine
J.J. Abrams on 60 Minutes

[ 0:25:57 ] II. Star Wars Box Office Predictions

— Box Office Haul (Opening Weekend, Domestic)
Jason = $267 Million
Andy = $300 Million
Karl = $275 Million
Ryan = $217.5 Million
Force Ghost Steve Hernandez = $295 Million

— Number of Consecutive Weeks at No. 1
Jason = 12 weeks
Andy = 6 weeks
Karl = 8 weeks
Ryan = 11 weeks
Force Ghost Steve Hernandez = 11 weeks

[ 0:41:27 ] III. Feature Review: STAR WARS EPISODE VI: RETURN OF THE JEDI (1983)
Jason = 10 ( Must-See / Buy it! )
Andy = 7 ( Rental )
Karl = 7 ( Buy it! )
Ryan = 8.5 ( Buy it! )
Force Ghost Steve Hernandez = 8 ( Buy it! )

IV. New in Theaters This Past Weekend:
In the Heart of the Sea
The Big Short [ Limited ]
The Lady in the Van [ Limited ]
Don Verdean [ Limited ]
The Boy and the World [ Limited ]
Bleeding Heart [ Limited ]


[ 1:10:29 ] V. Feature Review: IN THE HEART OF THE SEA (2015)
Jason = 5.5 ( Low-priority Rental )
Karl = 7 ( Rental )

— A Few Random Mouse Stories

[ 1:29:49 ] VI. Feature Review: SPOTLIGHT (2015)
Jason = 10 ( Must-See / Theater / Buy it! )
Andy = 10 ( Must-See / Theater / Rental )

[ 1:44:56 ] VII. Feature Review: GOODNIGHT MOMMY (2015)
Jason = 7.5 ( Strong Rental )

[ 1:48:44 ] VIII. Feature Review: LANDMINE GOES CLICK (2015)
Jason = 7 ( Rental With Caution ) – Only for Horror fans

IX. Wrap-Up / Plugs / Ending
Thank you to:
Stevie, German, Juan, David, Vance, Joshua, Shannon, Michael, Shane, Randy, Stephanie, Ryan, Steve

Episode 169 where we’ll be reviewing “Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens” and “Victoria.” Join us!


Be sure to check our Ryan’s 100th episode of Geek Cast Live Podcast

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Blog: Geek Cast Live
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Twitter: @GeekCastRy

Jason recommends supporting: Operation Underground Railroad

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

40 thoughts on “Movie Podcast Weekly Ep. 168: Spotlight (2015) and In the Heart of the Sea (2015) and Goodnight Mommy (2015) and Landmine Goes Click (2015) and Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983)

  1. Great episode, guys. Really loving the Star Wars coverage and this is coming from someone more inclined to agree with Andy on these films but still excited to see ‘The Force Awakens.’

    I wanted to comment on the Redbox discussion. There are contractual reasons that they do not get all of the new releases on the day of release. Both Netflix and Redbox have restrictions that other rental entities (such as On Demand and Amazon) do not. Don’t know all the legalities but I do know that is the case with some of the deals the studios have made with these companies.

    Great to hear how much you liked ‘Spotlight.’ It’s not playing right in my town but close enough to where hopefully I’ll get to see it before submitting my Top Ten List. Haven’t figured out what I want to win yet but the Rye pic sounds intriguing.

    Looking forward to The Force Awakens episode next week. Get to take my four year old daughter to see it which is the same age I was when my Mom took me to see “Empire.” Yep, Jay and Andy, I’m a 76er as well.

  2. Okay, I am going to drop some pre-listen thoughts on “Return of the Jedi,” building off some points made on the previous podcast discussion boards.

    These are some questions I was asking myself as I considered my thoughts on RotJ:

    Do some fans dislike “Star Wars Episode VI Return of the Jedi” so much because of the two classic movies in the trilogy that preceded it?

    And, do some fans enjoy “Star Wars Episode III Revenge of the Sith” so much because of the two sub-par (borderline disastrous) movies that came before it?

    And which is better? Episode VI or Episode III?

    I think I’m going to have to go with Episode III. It did so much with so little! Surely it had a few glaring problems and some cringe-worthy moments. But its parent films were already a big mess. And Episode III feels so important.

    But Episode VI was a follow-up to two pretty amazing movies. Much of its success and admiration was bound to happen just because of what preceded it. It doesn’t have the handful of cringe-worthy problems of Episode III, but it fails because most of it is just ‘meh’ with too few standout moments.

    Episode III was the film where all the most important story moments come together, while Episode VI struggles because most of the great story moments happen in Episode V. We are just left with rescue Han, Final battle, redeem Vader. (And we trade in a finished Death Star with an unfinished Death Star and AT-ATs with AT-STs).

    For me, In the end, “Return of the Jedi” is less “The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King” or “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” and more “Godfather III” or “Alien3.”

    • I just watched IV, V, and VI back to back to back this weekend and that is not the way to watch Return of the Jedi because as you say above it doesn’t hold up in comparison.

      As a stand alone movie on a lazy Saturday afternoon you could do worse (which is the best way to view Alien 3 and Godfather III as well – as far away from the originals as possible).

      But I can’t agree on III being better. The prequels just don’t work on any level for me – those are films I will gladly never view again. I’m pretty sure I’ve only seen The Phantom Menace a second time and I don’t even think I made it all the way through.

  3. Since it’s too late to do the opening weekend prediction, I’ll guess 8 weeks with Deadpool beating Star Wars for #1 with the release of Deadpool on Feb 12th.

      • I get the Superman/Batman taking it down for sure, Dino. But I just feel like Karl nailed it; it will be a kids movie. If Kung Fu Panda 3 doesn’t do it then Zootopia should a couple weeks before SvB comes out.

        Then of course in between you’ve got other possibilities such as Deadpool (as Sal mentioned), Zoolander 2, and London Has Fallen.

        It will probably be something random though (any votes for Pride and Prejudice vs. Zombies?); I had to look up what knocked off Titanic and it was freaking Lost in Space.

        • You guys’ estimates were waaaaaay too high. I mean, Star Wars is BIG, but there was no way it was going to make anywhere near $300 million domestically on the opening weekend. Another thing that you are way overestimating is its staying power at #1. Yes, it will probably stay there for about 6 weeks, but remember, each week the amount it makes will be less and less. There is absolutely no way that it will make make hundreds of millions week after week. You have to remember that you have to take into account that a few major releases with the potential to knock it out of #1 are about to come out. The Hateful Eight will probably make upwards of $50 million in its first week. That’s not enough to knock it out since Star Wars will probably stay closer to the $100 million mark on its third week, but it will hurt its sales for the next big release. The Revenant has a fairly good chance to knock it out if ticket sales drop dramatically by the fourth week. Next up is Ride Along 2. It has a very high chance of knocking out The Force Awakens. The first movie made around $40 million in its opening weekend and I predict this one to be around the same. By the fifth week, the Star Wars sales should be closer to $40-$50 million, so it has a very good chance of knocking it out. If it doesn’t, then it will for sure get dethroned by Kung Fu Panda 3 by its sixth week. So that’s my prediction. Kung Fu Panda 3 will knock Star Wars out of its number one spot by the sixth week.

  4. Now wait a minute…Jay isn’t a fan of Redbox?! The same Jay that seemingly mentions Redbox in every podcast I’ve ever heard him on? He’s the guy that uses “Free Redbox rental” as an official recommendation level!

    Everything I’ve known is a lie.

    • And as I said above his only complaint doesn’t really hold up. Does anyone think that if Redbox could have all of the new releases on the day they release them they wouldn’t?

      I’m not a huge supporter of Redbox; it serves it’s purpose when I’m out and about that strange of a complaint had to be commented on.

  5. Hey guys,
    Don’t know if you guys are going to do a recap show where you rank everything 1-7. Or say some of your highlights from the whole series, but for some reason I feel compelled to rank the first six films right here right now.

    1. Empire Strikes Back – 10/10
    Best: opening battle on Hoth and the Yoda wisdom on Degobah.
    Worst: aged a bit, and younger scatter brain audiences get bored with it

    2. A New Hope – 9/10
    Best: the music, it gave the film life, and it wouldn’t work half as well without it, as well as Alec Guinness’s performance which set the tone for the entire franchise
    Worst: the beginning act on Tattooine is a bit slow probably due to filming difficulties

    3. Revenge of the Sith – 6.5/10
    Best: it’s deliciously bleak, and genuinely unique from the rest of the series, the climax is almost satisfying enough to justify watching episode 1 & 2. almost…
    Worst: the dialogue is at its worst, and tonally it’s disastrous

    4. Return of the Jedi – 6/10
    Best: out of the original trilogy, it has the finest use of special effects, the death star battle is incredible
    Worst: it’s a huge disservice to the preceding two films. anticlimactic and cartoonish

    5. The Phantom Menace – 3.5/10
    Best: the lightsaber battle is hands down the best in the series, and the music that underscores it is genius!
    Worst: one of the biggest disappointments in film of all time, and it gave birth to one of the most petulant and detestable characters of all time… little Anikan…. oh and Jar Jar.

    6. Attack of the Clones – 3/10
    Best: I agree with you guys, it’s gotta be the sound design, especially the depth charges
    Worst: it’s all of the lazy blue screen filmmaking of phantom menace without a satisfying final action sequence

    If I had to guess based on the Star Trek reboot and my overall feelings about J. J…. I’d bet I give Force Awakens a 7.5/10 and it will become my new number 3. My tickets aren’t until Christmas day, so I still have some waiting to do.

    • Kagan, my rankings are probably not too far off of yours, but I would likely flip VI and III, and I and II. Of course, VII has thrown a wrench in all that up top for me.

    • IV: A New Hope – 10/10
      V: The Empire Strikes Back – 9.5/10
      VII: The Force Awakens – 9.5/10
      VI: Return of the Jedi – 7/10
      III: Revenge of the Sith – 6/10
      I: Phantom Menace – 5/10
      II: Attack of the Clones – 4/10

      • For now I’m going with the below rankings:

        1. Empire (10)
        2. New Hope (10)
        3. Force Awakens (10)
        4. Return of the Jedi (6.5)
        5. Revenge of the Sith (3.5)
        6. Phantom Menace (3.5)
        7. Attack of the Clones (2)

        Would not surprise me at all if after a few more viewings The Force Awakens becomes my favorite.

        • I’ll play:

          V: The Empire Strikes Back – 9.5/10
          IV: A New Hope – 9/10
          VII: The Force Awakens – 8.5/10 (maybe higher. I need to see this one again.)
          III: Revenge of the Sith – 6/10
          VI: Return of the Jedi – 6/10
          I: Phantom Menace – 5.5/10
          II: Attack of the Clones – 4/10

          I may need to revisit Episode III again. It has been years. I’m a bit worried to try it again…for now, I still prefer it to Episode VI.

          I’m glad a few of us agree that Episode I is better than Episode II. I’ve always felt a bit alone in that regard. I’ll take a bit of Jar Jar over Annie and Padme’s awkward relationship any ole’ day of the week.

    • Yay, lists!

      I have a really difficult time separating my fandom for the Star Wars universe when reviewing and rating these films, which some might argue are reflected in my ratings. It’s also making my top choice for best 2015 film a difficult one, but that’s not what this list is about. This is about STAR WARS!!!!!

      Here’s how I rate and rank the seven Star Wars films:

      1. Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back – 10/10
      2. Episode VII: The Force Awakens – 10/10
      3. Episode IV: A New Hope – 10/10
      4. Episode VI: Return of the Jedi – 10/10
      5. Episode III: Revenge of the Sith – 9/10
      6. Episode II: Attack of the Clones – 7.5/10
      7. Episode I: The Phantom Menace – 7/10

      A couple of notes/caveats on my rankings:

      – I can honestly see THE FORCE AWAKENS ultimately becoming my #1 on this list, but I have trouble supplanting what has been one of my favorite films of all-time for the last 30+ years with a movie I’ve just seen one time.

      – I sometimes struggle with my ordering of VI and III in my rankings, mostly because (as Steve has mentioned on the show) Episode III feels so important to the saga. Truthfully, though, a lot of important events occur in Episode VI as well, and it easily is the one I enjoy more out of the two films.

      – Episodes I and II are not great films overall, but they’re both filled with great moments and important backstory. Because of these great moments and backstory, it bothers me deeply when people dump on them. They’re still worthwhile films, and even though I wish they were better, still belong in the Star Wars/Skywalker saga.

      • I haven’t seen the original trilogy in years, so I can’t say how high I’d come in with a fresh perspective on them. Just going from memory, this is how I rate and rank them:

        1. A New Hope – 10/10
        2. The Force Awakens – 9.5/10
        3. The Empire Strikes Back – 9.5/10
        4. Return of the Jedi – 8/10
        5. Revenge of the Sith – 6/10
        6. Phantome Menace – 5/10
        7. Attack of the Clones – 4/10

        I’ve never thought of myself as a huge Star Wars fan and I didn’t grow up watching them. I did catch glimpses here and there, but it wasn’t until around high school when I actually got to see them in their entirety, so Jay can’t use my nostalgia against me. I have to say that The Force Awakens ignited something in me that wasn’t there previously. And I like it. I like it a lot.

      • Dino, You are a justifiable Star Wars fan. I love your thoughts, and I feel the conflict as well. Specifically with the death match between III and VI. It’s a tough call for me.

        I love/hate the prequels, and I went from a place of dumping on them to a place of finding them endearing. I’m loving seeing how many people are ranking Force Awakens so high. I’m dying. 4 more days until I see it!!!

  6. J – You almost did it! You almost released all six episodes “on time.” Close…

    This was a solid episode, though. Karl was in peak mode for this one. I especially liked his brown mouse in the trunk euphemism line. Talk about a dirty joke for a family show!

    I’m now addressing JOTD – Brother… I can’t say I’m surprised by your lukewarm reception and criminally low rating of GOODNIGHT MOMMY (not surprised, but disappointed). It’s definitely not your kind of movie (I suspect Josh will appreciate this one much more). The only thing that left me wondering was the mother-sons relationship element, because I know how you love the effectiveness of a troubled parent-child relationship in horror movies.

    Different strokes for different folks, though. HOWEVER, I did take exception with one thing you said: GOODNIGHT MOMMY is very clearly and absolutely horror. It’s not mild horror. Not kind of horror. Not a thriller with horror elements. Brother, this is a truly horrifying film. It’s not visceral in its horror (mostly); it’s certainly more subtle. But it’s definitely, unquestionably horror… much moreso than BONE TOMAHAWK.

    • If J really didn’t like Force Awakens, after some of the commentary he made in praise of the prequels, there will be some verbal abuse. ;o)

      I went to see it a second time and loved it even more. A few of the nitpicks I had the first time pretty much fell away. It is terrific in many ways.

      • That’s actually a comment I’ve heard several times, that the film benefits from repeated viewings. Honestly, I have that feeling as well… I haven’t had the pleasure of seeing it again (yet), but I was thinking afterwards that I wanted to see it again to clear a few things up.

        To me, that’s a mark of a special movie.

  7. Another very enjoyable episode.
    Andy, not sure why I have to celebrate Thanksgiving to appreciate what a fantastic movie Planes, Trains And Automobiles is given the director and the leading roles but I enjoyed the movie and the podcast very much! Great effort by all, minus that guy called Andy of course. Just kidding.

    Thanks guys.
    Stevie UK

  8. Spotlight is terrific, and I like how it shows off the talents of the Boston Globe reporters without getting bogged down in side stories about their lives. There’s barely any mention of anything about their personal lives, where I could see other depictions feeling like they have to make one character more of a hero, one involved in a love story, and so on. The compelling focus of this film is the investigation itself, and thankfully that gets the attention. And a good thing it does, as there are enough interesting details there to work through.

    Ruffalo was great, but he seemed really odd and affected at first, especially compared to the more low-key Leiv Schrieber and Keaton. But everyone else being more restrained in their characters made Ruffalo’s stand out in a nice way, and in the long term that worked really well for the ensemble, whereas if more of the characters were upbeat and edgy news reporters, that could have been too much.

    Excellent film. 9/10 for me.

  9. Saw Spotlight tonight. I’ll just say this – if Mark Ruffalo doesn’t win a Best Supporting Actor Oscar, he was robbed. Fantastic commitment to the role. It’s the first time I’ve truly been blown away by one of Ruffalo’s roles.

  10. After a mere four weeks, Star Wars: The Force Awakens is no longer #1 at the box office, falling to #3 behind The Revenant and #1 Ride Along 2.

    Looks like Andy came closest to winning.

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