Listen to the Gobbledygeek Season 3 Premiere, “The Young Adult with the Dragon Tattoo”

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.”)

Paul & AJ’s Top 10 Films of 2011

Paul and I rambled on and on about our favorites of 2011 in our second season finale, but that isn’t gonna stop us from rambling some more. This is the first in a series of top 10s that will be spread out over the next couple weeks; the rest will concern television, albums, and comic books.

But first, a word about lists. Paul has described my obsession with list-making as a “sickness,” and that’s probably close to the truth. However, even one such as I, beholden to rating and ranking everything known to man, know that these kinds of things are imperfect, to put it lightly. For one, no matter how all-inclusive you try to be, there’s always going to be a movie (or show, or comic, etc.) that you somehow missed; for example, as of this writing, neither Paul nor I have seen The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Shame, or Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, just to name a few. And more importantly, lists are always subject to how their makers feel at the moment they’re making them. Each of our top 10s represent the movies we love right now, and with the exception of our #1 choices, their order could be fluid, changing from day to day, mood to mood.

Right now, though? These are the films we adore, and which we feel exemplify 2011.

~ AJ

PAUL: 10. RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES (dir. Rupert Wyatt)

The summer blockbuster that was better than any of us had any right to expect. Not only a remarkably capable relaunch/reboot of a beloved but dated franchise, but also just a damned good popcorn flick in its own right. Andy Serkis brings heart and humanity (pun intended) to the “inhuman” protagonist. It’s Pinocchio and Moses and Che Guevara.

AJ: 10. GEORGE HARRISON: LIVING IN THE MATERIAL WORLD (dir. Martin Scorsese)

It has been lazy shorthand for decades to refer to George Harrison as the “quiet Beatle,” and though that might have a kernel of truth to it, the man himself was far more complex. Publicly, he was quiet because he desperately hated fame; professionally, he was quiet during the Beatle years because John and Paul vetoed his material, and later, because he was content with tending to his family and to his garden. Martin Scorsese’s Bob Dylan documentary No Direction Home definitively captured that 60s icon’s brilliance and enigma, and while Living in the Material World doesn’t quite do the same for this 60s icon, it comes close enough. In the first part of this two-part doc, the entire life cycle of The Beatles is rehashed yet again, though considering it’s Scorsese at the helm, it remains of interest. It’s in the second part, however, when things truly come alive. By telling of his unsung career as a film producer, enticing candid stories from a number of those closest to him, and showing private home movies, Scorsese paints a portrait of Harrison as a man perpetually struggling to reconcile his spirituality with his materialism, caught between divinity and mortality.

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Listen to Episode 64, “A Hazy Shade of Fall/Winter”

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.”)