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154. Pan’s Labyrinth at 10

September 12th, 2016

It's been ten years since the release of Guillermo del Toro's haunting fairytale Pan's Labyrinth, a film which was hailed as a masterpiece almost as soon as it debuted and whose reputation has only grown over time. To mark the occasion, Matt and Ed discuss the film's many good qualities, debate its legacy, and what impact it had on del Toro's career. They also get excited about the films debuting at the Toronto International Film Festival, Ed reminisces about the time he got to meet del Toro and almost cried, and Matt reveals how deceased Irish comedian Frank Carson shattered his chances of becoming a professional footballer.
00:00:00 - 00:18:22 - Intro & News
00:18:23 - 00:55:27 - Matt & Ed discuss Pan's Labyrinth
00:55:28 - 00:59:19 - SRS Recommends & Outro

153. Suicide Squad - Part 2

September 5th, 2016

In a direct sequel to last week's discussion of how bad Suicide Squad is as a film in its own right, but also a spiritual sequel to our episode on the state of the modern blockbuster, this episode finds Matt and Ed using Suicide Squad as a prism through which to explore the worst tendencies of modern blockbuster culture, and how it is emblematic of a moribund summer movie season. They detail how hard it is for a film to turn a profit these days, why foreign box office is so rarely a saving grace, and the increasing toxicity of online discussion around blockbusters. They also pay tribute to Gene Wilder and Jon Polito, two actors they loved who passed away this week, and wax poetic about Jackie Chan and Patrick Ness.

Here is the article by Todd Vanderwerff that Matt references during the main discussion.
00:00:00 - 00:12:31 - Intro & News
00:12:32 - 00:48:56 - Matt & Ed discuss Suicide Squad as it relates to modern blockbuster culture
00:48:57 - 00:54:46 - SRS Recommends & Outro

152. Suicide Squad - Part 1

August 29th, 2016

Matt's back from his holidays and the boys are a little punchy, as evidenced by the way that they turn what was meant to be a brief preamble about Suicide Squad into the focus of the entire episode. In between detailing why Captain Boomerang is the most useless character ever and trying to parse the murk of David Ayer's vision, they find time to discuss the BBC's list of the 100 best films of the 21st century so far, rekindle Ed's fear of rhinoceroses, and forget that Spectre exists. 
00:00:00 - 00:20:01 - Intro & News
00:20:02 - 01:04:48 - Matt & Ed discuss Suicide Squad 
01:04:49 - 01:09:42 - SRS Recommends & Outro

Next week: Matt and Ed place Suicide Squad in a broader context and have the conversation they meant to have this week.

151. Star Trek (with John Hunter)

August 22nd, 2016

It's been 50 years since Star Trek first entered the public consciousness, and five decades later, Gene Roddenberry's vision of the future is in surprisingly rude health. With the recent cinematic release of Justin Lin's Star Trek Beyond and slow drip of news about the forthcoming TV show Star Trek: Discovery, Ed sits down to discuss the series' various incarnations with writer and playwright John Hunter. In addition to discussing the strengths and weaknesses of the franchises and the reason for its longevity, they reminisce about drunken conversations about The West Wing, John's work with Slung Low Theatre, and Ed's paralysing fear of being challenged to a rap battle.

00:00:00 - 00:01:57 - Intro
00:01:58 - 00:05:14 - Ed & John talk about Slung Low Theatre
00:05:15 - 00:44:55 - Ed & John discuss Star Trek
00:44:56 - 00:49:29 - SRS Recommends & Outro

1986: Top Gun and Aliens

August 15th, 2016

Following on from last week, in which they talked about the films of 1986, Matt and Ed spend this week digging into two of the biggest hits of that year: Tony Scott's Top Gun and James Cameron's Aliens. In addition to talking about the influence that the two films had on the blockbuster format (whilst also being unlike most contemporary blockbusters), Matt reminisces about an unusual Top Gun-adjacent present, and Ed disparages his 14 year old self's taste in movies.


150. 1986

August 8th, 2016

This episode doubles as a double celebration since not only is Shot/Reverse Shot 150 episodes old, but it's Ed's 30th birthday. As is traditional, the birthday boy gets to choose the topic, and Matt and Ed spend this installment of the show discussing the films of 1986, a year that brought us C. Thomas Howell being menaced by Rutger Hauer and pretending to be black (though not in the same film), competing movies about animated mice, and surprisingly few sequels. And, of course, one Edwin Davies.
00:00:00 - 00:01:51 - Intro
00:01:52 - 00:45:38 - Matt & Ed discuss cinema in 1986
00:45:39 - 00:50:09 - SRS Recommends & Outro

149. Law Enforcement

August 1st, 2016

Inspired by HBO's The Night Of, Matt and Ed spend this episode talking about the many varied ways in which law enforcement officials have been depicted in film and television. From slapstick dunces in silent movies to embodiments of systemic corruption, from dedicated public servants to sociopaths with authority, they run the gamut. They also discuss the ways in which England international games are like season two of True Detective, gawk in wonder at the complete implosion of the Divergent franchise (and its surprising fallout for the Marvel universe), and dig into the furore surrounding Edgar Wright's list of 1000 favourite films.

00:00:00 - 00:24:30 - Intro & News
00:24:31 - 00:52:47 - Matt & Ed discuss Law Enforcement in film and TV
00:52:48 - 00:57:15 - SRS Recommends & Outro
00:57:16 - 00:58:55 - A little extra nonsense

N.B. The YA film which failed and became a TV series that Ed was thinking of was The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones.

148. Ghostbusters and The State of Blockbusters in 2016

July 18th, 2016

The Ghostbusters reboot opened in theaters this week to decent reviews, solid box office, and the wailing of bitter man-children. Matt & Ed weigh the pros and cons of the Paul Feig-directed version before segueing into a broader discussion about the crisis afflicting Hollywood blockbusters, as big-budget franchise after big-budget franchise has failed this year. In addition to all this, Matt shares an adorable story about making his own Ghostbuster unform as a child, Ed tries to come to terms with not hating Batman v Superman, and they both try and pitch a sequel to Me Before You.
00:00:00 - 00:02:05 - Intro
00:02:06 - 00:20:16 - Matt & Ed review Ghostbusters [Spoilers]
00:20:17 - 00:54:03 - Discuss of 2016's slate of blockbusters [Spoilers for Batman v Superman]
00:54:04 - 00:59:15 - SRS Recommends & Outro

147. Hamilton

July 11th, 2016

This past Saturday, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Leslie Odom, Jr. and Phillipa Soo left the cast of the Broadway show Hamilton, a wildly successful musical which has grown in prominence and cultural heft over the past year, to the extent that their departures were given the same treatment afforded to news surrounding popular TV shows and films. Since this represents an important transitional moment for the musical, Matt and Ed thought it would be a good time to take stock of the Hamilton phenomenon, their own thoughts and feelings about the play, and the way in which it addresses the difference between the past and history through a revolutionary mixture of Broadway, hip-hop, and actual history. They also mourn the passing of the great Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami, unpack the minor furore surrounding Sulu being gay in the latest Star Trek film, and talk about experiencing "Felicity Huffman-esque intensity".

00:00:00 - 00:08:22 - Intro & News
00:08:23 - 00:54:22 - Matt & Ed discuss Hamilton
00:54:23 - 00:59:49 - SRS Recommends & Outro

146. Game of Thrones/Veep/Silicon Valley

July 4th, 2016

Last Sunday HBO aired the finales of the sixth season of Game of Thrones, the fifth season of Veep, and the third season of Silicon Valley. Since the first two shows went through triumphant transitional seasons and the third is just really funny, Matt and Ed decided to talk about this uncommonly good block of programs. Warning: There are plenty of spoilers for all three shows.

They also pay tribute to several more luminaries who passed away this week, speculate on which video games Yasujirô Ozu would have adapted into films, and discuss the influx of new Academy members who are slowly making the Oscars less white.
00:00:00 - 00:16:13 - Intro & News
00:16:14 - 00:42:01 - Discussion of season six of Game of Thrones
00:42:02 - 00:52:00 - Discussion of season five of Veep
00:52:01 - 01:04:11 - Discussion of season three of Silicon Valley
01:04:12 - 01:08:36 - SRS Recommends & outro

145: O.J.: Made in America

June 27th, 2016

ESPN's 30 For 30 strand has been producing great, fascinating documentaries about significant sporting events and athletes for years now, but the series may have reached its pinnacle with Ezra Edelman's seven and a half hour, five part miniseries about the life of O.J. Simpson. Encapsulating Simpson's football career, marriage, murder trial, slide into obscurity and eventual trial for burglary and kidnapping, Edelman's film also stands as a breathtaking examination of race, gender and celebrity in American society, the history of L.A. and systemic racism in the LAPD, and uses the prism of one man's life to tell the story of the society that created him. In short, it's excellent, and Matt and Ed thought it would be remiss of them not to discuss it.

In addition to talking about the documentary itself, they compare it to FX's also fascinating miniseries The People v. O.J. Simpson, ponder the impact that Brexit will have on the British film industry (spoiler: a significant and terrible one!) and evaluate the new Ghostbusters theme.

00:00:00 - 00:19:44 - Intro & News
00:19:45 - 00:53:23 - Matt & Ed discuss O.J.: Made in America
00:53:24 - 00:58:03 - SRS Recommends & Outro

144. Finding Comfort in Art

June 20th, 2016

Following a week of terrible sadness in the real world, this week's episode is about finding solace in art and entertainment. Matt and Ed discuss times in their lives when art helped them cope with heartbreak, bereavement and wrenching change, create a fictional Canadian basketball team, and try to describe one scene from Up without crying. 

They also pay tribute to Anton Yelchin, a hugely promising young actor who did a lot of great work in a tragically short period of time, and who deserved the chance to so much more.
00:00:00 - 00:01:37 - Intro
00:01:38 - 00:26:12 - Matt & Ed discuss the death of Anton Yeltchin and taking comfort from art
00:26:13 - 00:33:41 - SRS Recommends & Outro

143. Disaster Movies

June 13th, 2016

After discussing disastrous movies last week, Matt and Ed talk about Disaster Movies this week. Specifically, they contrast the more human-centric stories of the genres '70s heyday against the inhumanity of the '90s force of nature entries into the genre, and the out-and-out disaster porn that has come to define so much of blockbuster filmmaking over the past decade. They also talk about Larry David maybe bringing back Curb Your Enthusiasm, the complexity of the Jack Frost series, and wonder which of his films Kevin Smith will cannibalise after he fails to make a Mallrats TV series.

- Here's a link to the Alexander Huls article on watching disaster movies after experiencing an actual disaster than Matt and Ed mention during the episode.
00:00:00 - 00:18:30 - Intro & News
00:18:31 - 00:38:11 - Matt & Ed discuss disaster movies
00:38:12 - 00:44:45 - SRS Recommends & Outro

142. Disastrous Movies

June 6th, 2016

Inspired by the Internet's less than Zen response to the announcement that Star Wars: Rogue One is undergoing reshoots, a story which has inspired some of the most furious handwringing since the last round of Star Wars rumours, Matt and Ed talk about why reshoots are not necessarily a bad thing, then go on to discuss troubled film productions in general; the ones that produced classics, the ones that resulted in forgotten films, and the ones that fall somewhere in between. They also reminisce about the terrible King Kong ride at Universal Studios, tentatively celebrate the possibility that Captain Marvel and the next Bond film may be directed by women, and chart a potential John Carney Apology Spiral.

00:00:00 - 00:18:03 - Intro & News
00:18:04 - 00:55:28 - Matt & Ed discuss the Rogue One reshoots and troubled film productions
00:55:29 - 01:01:05 - SRS Recommends & Outro

141. Rock & Roll

May 30th, 2016

In this slightly delayed episode, Matt and Ed complete their Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll trilogy with, funnily enough, an episode on Rock & Roll. They discuss films about musicians (both real and fictional), movies starring musicians, and take plenty of time to talk about the notorious 2000 gangster movie Honest, starring three quarters of All Saints and a Nazi lobster. They also pitch ideas for the latest Halloween film, reminisce about their youthful misunderstandings about Spinal Tap, and bemoan the dickishness of John Carney. Matt also provides compelling evidence for why Sexy Beast and OK Computer are basically the same.

00:00:00 - 00:13:02 - Intro & News
00:13:03 - 00:29:16 - Matt & Ed review Honest
00:29:17 - 00:56:36 - Discussion of Rock & Roll in film
00:56:37 - 01:02:46 - SRS Recommends & Outro

140. Drugs

May 16th, 2016

The second part of the Sex, Drugs and Rock n' Roll trilogy finds Matt and (an intensely sick and croaky) Ed discussing representation of drug use in film and TV, how cinema reflects shifting attitudes to different substances, and the ways in which Requiem for a Dream and Reefer Madness are basically the same film. They also discuss the slew of TV cancellations that occurred last week, imagine a crazier version of Easy Rider than the one we have, and Matt discusses the less glamorous side of the Cannes film festival.

00:00:00 - 00:22:12 - Intro & News
00:22:13 - 00:55:38 - Discussion of Drugs in film & television
00:55:39 - 01:00:22 - SRS Recommends & Outro

139. Captain America: Civil War

May 9th, 2016

NOTE: This episode contains spoilers for Captain America: Civil War and some elements of the Civil War comic crossover event.

We interrupt your regular scheduled programming to bring you a rare film review episode (we will do our episode on Drugs next week). Like much of the rest of the world, Matt and Ed saw Captain America: Civil War this weekend and it created an Iron Man/Captain America-style split in the Shot/Reverse Shot team in which one of them liked it more than the other. They work through their conflicted feelings about Marvel's latest behemoth, while also finding time to impersonate Michael Gambon, talk about mistrusting Bill Weasley, and fantasy-cast the best/worst remake of The League of Gentlemen imagination.


138. Sex

May 2nd, 2016

Marking the beginning of a new trilogy of tangentially related episodes, this week's show is all about sex in cinema. Matt and Ed run through the history of sex in Hollywood and the varying levels of censorship that have been applied to it, discuss what makes for good and bad sex scenes, and ponder the particular peccadilloes of major filmmakers. They also come up with a few killer band names, bemoan the untimely demise of Indiewire, and compare their respective abilities to survive in a zombie and snow-based tabletop game.
00:00:00 - 00:20:58 - Intro & News
00:20:59 - 00:56:54 - Matt & Ed discuss sex in film
00:56:55 - 01:03:38 - SRS Recommends & Outro
Jon Bois' Pretty Good series can be viewed on SBNation, as can Breaking Madden and the sublime "The Death of Basketball".
Correction: Ed mistakenly says at one point that Stanley Donen directed Pillow Talk. The film was in fact directed by Michael Gordon.

137. Villains

April 25th, 2016

Completing the diptych started with last week's episode on Heroes, Matt and Ed are talking about villains in film and TV this week. What makes a great villain? Is it compelling psychology? Physical attributes? Being created by David Lynch? They discuss all of these factors and more.
In addition to the main topic, Matt and Ed talk about the sudden death of Prince, anxiously anticipate the sixth season of Game of Thrones (and offer up in a baffling metaphor involving David Hasselhoff), and speculate about what Martin Amis' favourite free-to-play app is.
00:00:00 - 00:28:39 - Intro & News
00:28:40 - 01:00:31 - Matt & Ed discuss Villains in film and television
01:00:32 - 01:04:52 - SRS Recommends & Outro

Correction: Ed at one point refers to the great character actor Ted Levine as Ted Divine, for which he apologises, even though it's arguably an improvement on his actual name.

136. Heroes

April 18th, 2016

After a technical difficulties-induced break of two weeks, Matt and Ed are back in full force with a rundown of the big stories coming out of CinemaCon, the furore over AMC's (swiftly abandoned) plan to allow texting in screenings, and favourite examples of creative TV edits. The main topic this week is Heroes in cinema, and encompasses a discussion of superheroes as Greek Gods, the differences between "classic" Hollywood heroes and the antiheroes of noir and the 1970s, and what traits make for a compelling hero.
00:00:00 - 00:26:31 - Intro & News
00:26:32 - 00:49:44 - Discussion of Heroes in film
00:49:45 - 00:54:29 - SRS Recommends & Outro

The Pajiba article Ed mentions in the news segment can be found here, and the New Yorker article Matt discusses towards the end of the show can be found here.