Self-destruction. Division. Separation. Annihilation. These are the frivolous, lighthearted concerns of Alex Garland’s latest film, a mind-expanding sci-fi trip that finds Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tessa Thompson, Gina Rodriguez, and Tuva Novotny exploring “Area X,” a mutated piece of land encompassed by the full-on-double-rainbow-all-the-way that is the Shimmer. What’s going on here? What’s causing it? Does an answer even matter? Paul and Arlo dig into Annihilation’s writhing, metastasizing guts to discuss the beautiful, macabre work of production designer Matt Digby; the organic/electronic discomfit of Geoff Barrow and Ben Salisbury’s score; how Garland’s approach intentionally places the viewer at a distance; and that goddamn bear. Plus, Paul watched something called the Olympics; Arlo wants to help The Breadwinner make some dough; and Paul gives Arlo shit, what else is new.
Next: the episode we teased last week! For a musical Geek Challenge, Arlo must watch Kenn Anakin’s 1982 “classic” The Pirate Movie and Paul must endure Jacques Demy’s 1967 classic (no quotation marks necessary) The Young Girls of Rochefort.