Devin and I asked our friend Kevin Werner to rejoin us for a screening and discussion of “Hail, Caesar!” We enjoyed it, even if we weren’t quite sure and didn’t quite agree on what it all means.
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Peruse the M&M Report category page for previous episodes of the podcast. Thanks for listening.
Earlier this year, the directing team of Phil Lord and Chris Miller tackled the perils of conformity and the joys of creativity in The Lego Movie, which took America by storm and became the year’s highest-grossing movie so far. Having previously adapted Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and revived 21 Jump Street for the big screen, Lord and Miller were no strangers to Hollywood success, but The Lego Movie elevated their profile to previously unthinkable heights.
22 Jump Street ought to do it again. It’s as funny as the original, with an extra layer of metacommentary on the inevitable fatigue and repetition that plagues most movie sequels. Better yet, the metacommentary exists not as a mere distraction from a dearth of originality, but rather a springboard from which new ideas emerge. The movie is about the hapless Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and the muscular Jenkoff (Channing Tatum) chasing their former glory and confronting the unusual nature of their relationship. As in the first movie, there are car chases, preposterous plot twists, romantic entanglements, professional jealousies, pop-culture references, celebrity cameos and tidy resolutions. Working from a script by Michael Bacall, Oren Uziel and Rodney Rothman, Lord and Miller manage to freshen this retread with self-awareness and a genuine layer of compassion.
Welcome to The M&M Report! This week, Devin and I broke down the Oscar nominees in the major categories, offering our thoughts on the nominees, as well as some alternatives who we would have enjoyed seeing on the list. We closed by listing our five favorite movies of 2013. (For further reading, check out my thoughts on the Oscar nominations.)
Devin and I are proud to announce that The M&M Report will be moving to TheEagleOnline.com beginning next week. We’re very excited to bring a podcast presence to our student newspaper, and we hope that you’ll join us in our transition. Our shows will be very much the same, though perhaps a little shorter – we know firsthand that college students have busy schedules. We’ll start the new era of The M&M Report with a discussion of one of our favorite shows, The West Wing. Plus, the triumphant return of Devin Doesn’t Like Things.
This week on The M&M Report, Devin Mitchell and I talked at length about one of 2013’s last movies and one of 2014’s first. It was a study in contradictions, with the excesses of debauchery followed by the simplicity of combat.
The Wolf of Wall Street has gotten lots of acclaim, as you would expect from a movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio and directed by Martin Scorsese, but it hasn’t been immune to controversy, including allegations that it glorifies the despicable character at its center. Devin and I debated this issue and praised the movie’s performances even as we struggled to decide whether the movie is profound or merely compelling.
Lone Survivor is perched high atop this week’s box office, and it’s not hard to see why: established box-office draw Mark Wahlberg, solid supporting cast (Taylor Kitsch, Ben Foster, Emile Hirsch, Eric Bana), respect and admiration for the American military. We talked about the movie’s grotesque highs and jingoistic lows.
Next week, we’re going to take a deep dive into the best movies of 2013, spurred by tomorrow’s Golden Globe Awards and this Thursday’s announcement of the Oscar nominations. Expect return visits from previous podcast topics like 12 Years a Slave and Inside Llewyn Davis plus our thoughts on other favorites like American Hustle, Nebraska, Her and Dallas Buyers Club.
We talked about several articles during this week’s show. Here’s a helpful list: