Episode 452: The Red Pill

the red pill

It’s time for a brand new episode of The Flickcast. The podcast about stuff nerds love. This week it’s Episode 452: The Red Pill.

On this episode Chris and Joe get down to business with discussions about new and recurring topics. Some of these include Star Trek news about new and returning series like Strange New WorldsPicard and Discovery, the new trailer for The Matrix: Resurrections and the latest episode of the Marvel/Disney+ series What If. . . ? featuring those damn zombies.

In addition to the above, you can also expect the usual “more” and a few tangents. Not as bad as last week, so that’s something. But, for better or worse, this one is about the length you’d expect. That’s what she said. It never gets old, at least to us.

Also, picks are back this week. Woot! Joe’s pick is Billy Summers, the latest novel from Stephen King and Chris’ is the new action film Kate, starring Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Miku Martineau and Woody Harrelson, now streaming on Netflix.

If you like the show, please consider rating or reviewing it on Apple Podcasts, or your podcast app of choice. Every rating or review helps. And if you’re really feeling it, consider supporting the show on Patreon. That would be cool. 

Thanks for listening!

As always, if you have comments, questions, critiques, offers of sponsorship or whatever, feel free to hit us up in the comments, on Twitter, Instagram or, yes, even Facebook. Or shoot us an email. We don’t mind.

 

 

Opening music by GoodB Music under Creative Commons License
End music by Kevin MacLeod under Creative Commons License
Image: Warner Bros. Pictures / Village Roadshow

War Movie Mondays Again: The Steel Helmet

the steel helmet

It’s time for another edition of War Movie Mondays Again. This time we’re focusing on Samuel Fuller’s 1951 film The Steel Helmet.

The Steel Helmet is one of the most honest, unflinching, in your face war films ever made. Set during the opening stages of the Korean War, the film follows a small squad of Americans who face off against an unseen enemy. Actor Gene Evans makes his big screen debut as Sergeant Zack, a World War II veteran who finds himself in a new kind of war.

The film opens with a tight close-up shot of a steel helmet that’s been punctured by a bullet. Soon, it’s revealed to be Sgt. Zack who’s the lone survivor of an enemy attack that massacred his entire outfit. With his hands bound behind his back, Zack tries to free himself.

A young South Korean boy (William Chun) comes to Zack’s aid and frees him. The boy is nicknamed “Short Round” by Zack who allows the kid to tag along with him until he can find another American outfit to join up with.

As Zack and Short Round are making their way through a wooded area Zack hears a noise and tells Short Round to “Eat rice”. They’ve come across another American, a medic who is also a survivor from an enemy attack. Corporal Thompson (James Edwards) joins up with Zack and Short Round. It is also revealed that Thompson is a World War II vet and his experiences during the last war mirror that of Fuller’s own combat diaries with the First Infantry Division.

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Trailer Time: The Matrix: Resurrections

the matrix: resurrections

It’s time for another edition of Trailer Time. This week it’s the new trailer for the hotly anticipated The Matrix: Resurrections.

If you’re a cynic you could say doing a fourth installment of a trilogy that, for most people, was pretty complete over 20 years ago is simply an attempt to appeal to nostalgia and cash in. If you’re a cynic. Fortunately, we’re not that jaded . . . yet.

In fact, this new trailer for The Matrix: Resurrections had the opposite effect on us: we were thrilled to see it. As huge fans of the original films this one looks even better.

With effects technology having advanced so far since the first Matrix film in 1999 we can expect the visuals of this new one to be amazing . . . and the trailer gives us big hints that’s the case. It looks great.

Plus, it’s great to see Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Ann Moss back in black and kicking some ass. We’re totally onboard for this. 

The Matrix: Resurrections stars Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Ann Moss, Priyanka Chopra, Jessica Henwick, Christina Ricci, Jada Pinkett Smith, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Neil Patrick Harris. It’s written by Lana Wachowski, David Mitchel and Aleksandar Hemon and directed by Lana Wachowski.

It arrives in theaters and on HBOMax on December 22nd. Until then, check out the trailer below. It’s pretty amazing.

 

 

Image: Warner Bros. / Village Roadshow

Episode 451: The Absolute Point

the absolute point

It’s time for a brand new episode of The Flickcast. The podcast about stuff nerds love. This week we’ve got Episode 451: The Absolute Point.

On this episode Chris and Joe, as they usually do, get right into it with discussions about new and recurring topics. Some of these include the 7-minute standing-O for Dune at the recent Venice Film Festival, Jeopardy followup, the amazingness of Space: 1999 and the latest episode of the Marvel/Disney+ series What If. . . ?.

In addition to the above, you can also expect the usual “more” and a few tangents. Not as bad as last week, so that’s something. But, for better or worse, this one is about the length you’d expect. That’s what she said (again).

If you like the show, please consider rating or reviewing it on Apple Podcasts, or your podcast app of choice. Every rating or review helps. And if you’re really feeling it, consider supporting the show on Patreon. That would be cool. 

Thanks for listening!

As always, if you have comments, questions, critiques, offers of sponsorship or whatever, feel free to hit us up in the comments, on Twitter, Instagram or, yes, even Facebook. Or shoot us an email. We don’t mind.

 

 

Opening music by GoodB Music under Creative Commons License
End music by Kevin MacLeod under Creative Commons License
Image: Chiabella James / Legendary / Warner Bros. 

War Movie Mondays Again: The Longest Day

the longest day

It’s time for another edition of War Movie Mondays Again where we take a look at a classic (or not-so-classic) war movie you may or may not have seen. This week it’s the 1962 “Grandaddy of all war movies” The Longest Day.

Legendary producer Darryl F. Zanuck and directors Ken Annakin (British scenes), Andrew Marton (American scenes), Bernhard Wicki (German scenes) and an uncredited John Wayne bring Cornelius Ryan’s 1959 best selling novel about the D-Day invasion to the big screen.

With a cost of over over $10 Million, The Longest Day features a cant of over forty-two of the most acclaimed (at the time) actors  including Eddie Albert, Paul Anka, Richard Beymer, Red Buttons, Mel Ferrer and Henry Fonda. It also features Jeffery Hunter, Roddy McDowall, Robert Mitchum, Robert Ryan, Steve Forrest and the Duke himself, John Wayne. The cast is huge and this is something you rarely, if ever, see anymore. 

Some of the things that set The Longest Day apart from other war films was it had such a grand cast, was shot entirely in black & white (to match actual footage shot during the invasion) and showed all perspectives of those who fought on D-Day. Two versions of the film were shot simultaneously. In one the French and German scenes were spoken in English rather than in their native languages. In the other, the native languages were used. 

When the film was re-released in the late 1960s as a way for America to help justify its presence in Vietnam, the English version was shown in theaters and drive-ins across the U.S. When the film first came to home video in the 1980s, there were either two VHS tapes, or later with DVDs, two version of the film for purchase.

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Revisiting John Huston: Treasure of the Sierra Madre

treasure of the sierra madre

It’s time for another edition of Revisiting John Huston. This week we’re talking about Huston’s 1948 masterpiece Treasure of the Sierra Madre. Let’s get into it.

After The Maltese Falcon, Treasure of the Sierra Madre is probably Huston’s most famous film. The two probably vie for the title of best known. It’s a great movie in the sense that The Godfather and Casablanca are great movies: memorable characters, rich in themes, steep in action, imminently watchable.  The kind of “old” movie for people who don’t like “old” movies.

I doubt anyone reading this won’t know the plot, but just in case, let’s talk about it. Humphrey Bogart plays Fred C. Dobbs, an out-of-luck drifter settled like dirt in one of Mexico’s dirtiest towns. He meets up with fellow drifter Bob Curtin (Tim Holt), and the two try to pick up odd jobs with even less luck than they started with.

After taking brutal revenge on an employer who stiffed them, Dobbs and Curtin meet up with the grizzled and half-mad Howard (Huston’s father Walter, in an Oscar-winning role), a seasoned prospector looking for some men to share the costs of an expedition to mine for gold.

The three team up and head for the wilderness. Soon after, it’s clear that Howard is the most valuable member of the outfit, able to recognize Fool’s Gold and find the real stuff where the others see dust.  He’s also the mediator, picking up early on the paranoia and greed that will eventually lead to Dobbs’ ruin.

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Things We Love: Audiobooks

audiobooks

It’s time for another installment of Things We Love. This week one of the things we love is Audiobooks. So let’s get to it.

Like most of you, we’ve been aware of audiobooks for a long time. But until recently, we primarily enjoyed books the more “traditional” way: reading a physical, paper copy or via a device like the Amazon Kindle. A couple years ago, without any real prompting or much thought other than “let’s give it a try,” we instead started listening to books using Audible

And much to our surprise, we really enjoyed it. In fact, with life’s time pressures (and other distractions) it’s often easier, at least for us, to listen to a book instead of taking the time to sit and read. Audiobooks are also very useful during times such as driving the car when you’re going to and from work or on a longer road trip (if you’re doing that right now).

For our audiobook needs we primarily head over to Audible. Of course, there’s other places to find audiobooks. And some of those places are less expensive, or even in some cases, completely free.

Some of these alternatives include Libro.fm, Scribd, Chirp or, if you’re an Apple user, Apple Books. You can also get audiobooks from, you guessed it, your local library. Check to see if your library uses apps like Libby, Overdrive or Hoopla.

If so, free books are just a few clicks away. Heck, they may even have books on CD to check out. That is, if you have a way to play them like a CD player in your car or home. 

Fortunately, we do. Even so we tend to prefer the convenience of something like Audible, or another digital service, where you can download the book to your phone or tablet. This makes it more portable and easier to bring several books at a time. 

Some of the audiobooks we’ve been enjoying lately include Project Hail Mary and The Martian by Andy Weir, Dune by Frank Herbert, Yearbook by Seth Rogen, Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton, Foundation by Isaac Asimov and Red Rising by Pierce Brown. 

Of those we especially enjoyed The Martian due to the reading/performance of Wil Wheaton (yes, him) and also Project Hail Mary, as read and performed by Ray Porter. The others are very good too, but these two really stand out.

We can recommend both, and the rest too. Or, if these aren’t to your taste, there’s thousands more to choose from. The only limit is your imagination.

Cliche’? Maybe. But also true. There’s a lot of books out there. You’re sure to find one you love.

If you do decide to check out some audiobooks, let us know down below in the comments what you start with. Or, if you’re a veteran listener, let us know some or your favorites.

Until then, happy listening!

 

Artwork: Will Staehle for Penguin/Random House

Western Wednesdays Again: Silverado

silverado

For this week’s Western Wednesdays Again we’ve got Lawrence Kasdan’s 1985 epic Silverado. Let’s get to it.

“A Western like you’ve never seen before … An exciting new look at the Old West.”

Oh, taglines. I like when you do my work for me. You just described what Silverado isn’t!

I’ve had this one in my queue for quite awhile. I’ve anticipated it greatly. Writer and Director Lawrence Kasdan is no slouch with pulp-oriented films like The Empire Strikes Back and Raiders of the Lost Ark to his credit so I had high hopes.

If there’s one thing Kasdan knows, it’s action adventure, right? Not when it coms to Silverado, a film that misses the mark so often that I fail to see how it’s garnered 2-disc collector sets and such enthusiasm among Western fans.

I suppose it’s all due to Costner. Little baby Costner. This is the film that made him a star and a dreamy genre successor to John Wayne and Clint Eastwood. They seem to have costumed him with that very idea in mind, because he wears a variation on every famous Western and cowboy look ever filmed.

At one point, he even wears a serape. He’s a weird, goofy character — I can’t tell if he’s special or just supposed to be extremely young — and the highlight of the film is undoubtedly when he decides his horse needs to wear a hat. It just comes out of nowhere. Costner walks down the street, happy as a clam, and his horse is wearing a cowboy hat.

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