Brian’s Exploratory Christmas Endeavor ’19: It’s a Wonderful Life

I spoke about this movie on, I believe, the first Christmas special episode of the podcast we ever did, and I was enthusiastic about it at the time. I’ve only become more fond of it since then. Why bring it up now?

There’s a 4K release now.

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Season 2 Bonus Episode 2: High School Was Horrible

In this, which I consider to be an absolutely delightful bonus episode, I agreed to share this awful picture from my high school art class portfolio, where we were asked to draw self-portraits and to have them introduce us. So. Here it fucking is.

And here’s the photo I was alluding to, which was taken around the same year or perhaps the year after, when I was on an Art Club field trip out of state. I hope you’re happy, you bastards.

GBU Season 2, Episode 17: Jojo Rabbit

Finally! A proper unmitigated disaster of a recording! Finally! Something to struggle against! Something to win! This was the episode…that almost wasn’t!

I went to see Taika Waititi’s Jojo Rabbit with Jon and Brooke, and a couple of Brooke’s friends, and we were all excited to record, but couldn’t get it done that evening. We converged in the Dayton Upstairs Recording Studio a few days later and set up to record with a template that I’d made so I wouldn’t have to set the project up fresh every time. And I firmly believe that’s where things went to shit.

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GBU Season 2, Episode 16: The Lighthouse

This time around we look at Robert Eggers’ sophomore picture, The Lighthouse, starring Willem Defoe and Robert Pattinson. It’s an absolutely crazy picture. Some are calling it the best film of the year. What did we think? Actually, our opinions were pretty divided!

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GBU Season 2, Episode 13: Joker

It’s a Joker movie! It’s called Joker! Directed by Todd Phillips and starring Joaquin Phoenix, Robert De Niro, Frances Conroy, Zazie Beetz, and Brett Cullen, this movie was a movie.

I don’t have much to say about this episode, except that the buzz came back which I’m not pleased about, and we may have committed an audio sin after the episode by trying more random snacks from the Asian grocery down the street.

Downton Abbey

For better or worse, Downton Abbey is… Downton Abbey. But for its feature-length runtime, this film is no more and no less than precisely what you think when you hear “Downton Abbey“.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but for me, it was at least a little disappointing. When I think of a television show getting a feature-length film, I expect it to be a little more. Animated programs like Pokémon and The Simpsons come to mind: there is an immediate, obvious difference in production value between the television shows and their full-length movies. Not only that, but when a 22-minute (or whatever length) TV show gets a long-form movie, the self-contained plots of these usually involve higher stakes.

And sure, on paper the stakes of Downton Abbey are high. At least, by the standards of a show where fancy dining making or breaking reputations can be considered high stakes.

Actually, there is something else that happens, or almost happens, rather, but it is dealt with so swiftly, and so early in the film’s runtime that it’s rather a laugh to even look back on it as an important moment in the film because the film itself doesn’t even bother to think that much of it.

I don’t want to poo-poo the movie. I love Downton Abbey too much to do that. But I still expected at least a little more.

I’ve been trying to finish writing this for like two weeks. I wish I had more to say about it. But it’s just a long episode of the TV show. It’s warm and fuzzy and pleasant and ultimately trivial.

So. Uh. 2.5/5. Good. Enough.

GBU Season 2, Episode 9 – Climax

Well, it’s been a while since we’ve recorded a new episode! I wrongly said on the show that the most recent one had been with Sleepy Hollow with Cea, when in fact it had been The Rocketeer with Jon and Kayleigh. I think I just blocked that one from my memory because it was such a bad time. I mean really, you can hear it on the recording, it was just a bad time.

You know what else is a bad time? The first several days after you watch Gaspar Noé’s 2018 film Climax.

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Aladdin (2019)

I did myself and this film a favor, I think, by not revisiting the original Aladdin first. I know that if I’d watched the 1992 classic before seeing the 2019 remake, or if I’d even watched it before writing this review, the new movie would seem worse to me. My memories of the original aren’t enough to color my opinion here, because as was the case with Dumbo, I haven’t seen the original on which this new remake is based since the 1990s.

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