The Irreverent Cineastes Podcast

Two sarcastic and mildly embittered film scholars analyze, appreciate, and excoriate important works of pop culture.

The Hobbit Trilogy - The Irreverent Cineastes Podcast - Year One

February 23rd, 2016

So this is what happened when Andrew and Jon decided to take one of their epic conversations about movies and put them into podcast form.  It’s a good first effort, all told, though it might be a bit gentler on its subject than either of us would have liked, in retrospect. The Hobbit was exactly the type of film series that caused us to do this thing in the first place, with polarized opinions on both sides that seemed to leave little room for the common ground we were trying to stake.  And yeah, we didn’t have a name for the show yet when this was recorded.  One of us thinks it probably should have stayed that way…we’ll let you guess who! Explicit language.

Content Advisory: Fanboy self-loathing, Peter Jackson appreciation, Peter Jackson disparagement, mentions of something called The Silmarillion (sounds pretty made up to me), Trilogy justification (and lack thereof),  "the economy of storytelling," musical numbers, Stephen Fry eating testicles, Andrew attempts to identify the Five Armies, and Legolas.

The Dark Knight Rises - The Irreverent Cineastes Podcast - Year One

February 23rd, 2016

Our second outing of the then-christened Irreverent Cineastes Podcast saw Jon and Andrew taking down one of their biggest bête noires: the much anticipated and even more over-appreciated The Dark Knight Rises.  What follows is a very thorough, insightful examination of a very flawed movie that could have been the finale to one of the great film trilogies, but instead dropped the bomb – I mean ball -  in what we feel was a very, very bigway.  A really good listen no matter what side of the aisle you fell on with this one, as we both make the case that this movie wasn’t nearly as good as you wanted it to be.   We experienced a number of technical issues when this was first recorded, so kudos to Andrew’s editing skills for turning this into something well worth listening to. Explicit language.

Content Advisory: Lots of general Batman geekiness, the word “testicles” being bandied around with shocking frequency, criticisms of Christopher Nolan, discussions of neoconservative allegory, "Robin," the narrative potential of fight scenes, obligatory romance, terrible Bane impressions, and even-worse Michael Caine impersonations.  

Star Trek Into Darkness - The Irreverent Cineastes Podcast - Year One

February 23rd, 2016

Andrew and Jon again take aim at one of their least favorite blockbusters of recent years: Star Trek Into Darkness.  A really entertaining and engrossing discussion here, as we come at this movie from the perspective of being Star Trek fans, but find that many of our issues with it have less to do with Star Trek and more to do with its crass exploitation of the post-terrorism era and sexism. There’s still plenty of Star Trek talk here, so if you’re not into that – first, fuck you – and second: grow up. It’s an ingrained part of our popular culture and you’re just being an asshole pretending that it’s“beneath you.”  There, I said it. Explicit language.

Content Advisory: (Some of these are actually legitimate) Discussions of September 11 imagery and when it is and isn't appropriate, Hollywood racism, sexism, misogyny and general “faux feminism,” Benedict Cumberbatch’s translucence, 9/11 truthers, Robert Orci, J.J Abrams, lens flares, and, of course, KHAAAAAAAAANN!!!

Superman Returns & Man of Steel - The Irreverent Cineastes Podcast - Year One

February 23rd, 2016

So yeah, about this one: it’s definitely a thorough,intelligent discussion and critique of two movies that absolutely deserved to be critiqued in a way that only Jon and Andrew - and several other hundreds of thousands people across the world - could have provided.  But…it was also a lesson to us that less could, and often should, be more, and for whatever reason we just weren’t our usual convivial selves that day.  Still though, we cover a lot of ground here as we talk about two movies that tried to get the forerunner of superheroes right for the new millennium but just couldn’t make you care than a man could fly. We especially discuss many of the controversies surrounding Man of Steel, which might have been the reason for the dearth of humor on our part.  For those reasons, it’s still very much worth a listen - especially for Superman fans – so check it out!  Explicit language.

Content Advisory: September 11 imagery, neck-snapping, queer theory, Superman history, Brian Singer, Zack Snyder, portrayals of women, and gross miscasting. You see? Even the trigger warnings aren’t funny.  Also, it’s three hours long. 


Marvel Cinematic Universe 2015 and Beyond - The Irrverent Cineastes Podcast - Year One

February 23rd, 2016

Andrew and Jon returned to form here with an engrossing and engaging discussion of the biggest movie brand on the planet: MARVEL.  Specifically we go over its two most intriguing projects of the year –the Netflix series Daredevil and Avengers: Age of Ultron! We also discuss Ant-Man…for some reason.  Overall, though, we look at what issues Marvel was dealing with as its reach expanded and its brand matured, examined its creative decisions and its influences, and gauged what position they’re in heading into the future (beyond that they’re obviously going to make a lot of money).  In addition to that, the two of us give our view on the Black Widow controversy that gripped Age of Ultron and provide our respective takes on what was and wasn’t worthy of criticism and hyperbole (and also contrast it to Daredevil being left off the hook for its issues with female representation).   A good show, especially if you’re not someone who’s ever bothered to look below Marvel’s glossy sheen. Note: this was recorded before Jessica Jones debuted, which was why it wasn’t part of our discussion.  Worry not, however, as we plan to give the show its due discourse in Year Two!  Explicit language.

Content Advisory: Feminism, misogyny, infertility (which Jon inexplicably confuses with pregnancy), Black Widow, grimdark, New York City, gentrification, Frank Miller (who’s kind of an asshole now, let’s be honest), perspectives on the apocalypse, performing fellatio on Joss Whedon, and, of course, verisimilitude.   

Star Wars - The Force Awakens - The Irreverent Cineastes Podcast - Year One

February 23rd, 2016

Jon and Andrew round out their first year of the podcast by discussing only the biggest movie of the modern era.  No pressure or anything.  This podcast best represents what we want this thing to be - intellectually invigorating and consistently funny -as Andrew stakes his claim on not liking the movie, while Jon comes down firmly on the side of...thinking it's okay, but not great, you know? Probably our best podcast yet, and not surprisingly it involved the least planning on our part. Explicit language.

Content Advisory: Discussing the prequels, comparing the prequels to 9/11 (it does actually make sense, when you stop being offended by it), the genocidal impulses of J.J.Abrams, balancing characterization with symbolism, #TeamJabba (Google that and you'll make Andrew very happy), diversity and representation, racism, defending Return of the Jedi, the importance of change, Luke Skywalker: Sicilian, bad CGI, LAAAAME, and another fucking Death Star.