Gobbledygeek episode 290, “If You Must Blink, Do It Now,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Laika, the studio behind Coraline, ParaNorman, and The Boxtrolls, has gifted us with a new film: Kubo and the Two Strings, wherein a young one-eyed Japanese boy plays his magical shamisen and pals around with a Monkey and a Beetle while evading the evil grandfather looking to steal his other eye. As one does. Paul and Arlo get in tune with Kubo, digging into the film’s symbolism, its unusual (for a mainstream animated film) themes of grief and impermanence, and how it perfects the nearly dead artform that is stop-motion animation. Is it suitable for kids? What does its underwhelming box office performance say about what audiences expect from animated films? And what does that polarizing ending mean? All this and more, plus Arlo saw an actual Beatle.
Next: for another great story that deserves a wider audience, Paul and Arlo continue their year-long Four-Color Flashback exploration of Matt Wagner’s Grendel with “God and the Devil, Part 1,” collected in Grendel Omnibus: Vol. 3, pp. 115-270.
(Show notes for “If You Must Blink, Do It Now.”)
I am not the half of Gobbledygeek who loathes the Oscars; in fact, they’re an annual tradition in my house. This year, we even ponied up for chocolate Oscar statuettes powdered with gold. We don’t mess around. Amazingly, I even liked seven of this year’s nine Best Picture nominees (the odd ones out being War Horse and, ugh, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close). At the same time, I realize that the Academy often fails to recognize some truly brilliant films, and in the interest of counter-programming, I thought I’d point out some of the ones it missed this year.
These films didn’t garner a single Oscar nod this year (if it wasn’t for Sound Editing, Drive would be all up in here), and were actually eligible by Academy rules (otherwise, I would have spotlighted The Sunset Limited yet again, alongside the hilarious concert film Louis C.K.: Live at the Beacon Theater).
We’ve got 11 great movies here, divided up into three categories. To get us started…
Gobbledygeek episode 80, “The Young Adult with the Dragon Tattoo,” is available for listening or download right here.
Your worst nightmares have been realized: Paul and AJ are back with another season of Gobbledygeek! To kick things off, the boys discuss two films released late last year. Though they are both very different, they’re both about damaged women: Young Adult, the very un-Juno-like reteaming of Jason Reitman and Diablo Cody, starring Charlize Theron as a self-obsessed YA author; and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, David Fincher’s adaptation of the first book in Stieg Larsson’s blockbuster Millennium series, starring Rooney Mara as fierce hacker/investigator Lisbeth Salander. They clash over Young Adult‘s polarizing conclusion, and come together in defense of Mara’s Salander, who has not been softened or overly sexualized, thank you very much.
Next: the future, according to pop culture.
(Show notes for “The Young Adult with the Dragon Tattoo.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 64, “A Hazy Shade of Fall/Winter,” is available for listening or download right here.
Gather ’round, boys and girls! The leaves will soon be falling from the trees; snow can’t be too far off after that. After long, strenuous days of leaf-blowing and snow-shoveling, what better way to take respite than by going to a movie? Well, luckily for you, Paul and AJ have got your fall/winter itinerary covered: they discuss 65 (!) movies coming out from September through January, from blockbusters like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo to arthouse flicks like The Artist, from sure-to-be-awful movies like The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 to sure-to-be-awesome movies like Carnage. As August comes to a close, pour yourself a mug of hot cocoa, wrap yourself in a parka, and fantasize about all the moviegoing you’ll be doing the next few months.
(Show notes for “A Hazy Shade of Fall/Winter.”)