Episode 49: The Mummy (1932, 1999)

Ok, look, I swear we didn’t do this on purpose.  We wanted to do a series where we compare classic films and their remakes in this “Then and Now” or “What, This Again?” series.  We did NOT intentionally set out to make the last three episodes in the series, and thus almost half the series, about famous movie monsters.  Seriously! That’s a series unto itself! It just worked out that way! It ain’t our fault! We was framed! We fell in with the wrong crowd, see? We didn’t mean nothin’ by it, honest!
So, yes, we close out “Then and Now” with another of the Universal monsters, The Mummy.  Hey, at least we didn’t include the Wolfman.  Yet.  So here we deal with the King of Wrap, the Bandaged Bandit, the Crypt-in Egyptian . . . the Mummy (or Imhotep, if you’re a stickler for detail).  We start off with the original 1932 version with Boris “Lugosi’s Bane” Karloff and end with the version with Brendan Fraser.  Sure, why not? Hey, be grateful we didn’t subject you to the *shudder* Tom Cruise version.  Grab your scarab beetle repellent and give a listen!

Episode 48: Dracula (1931, 1979, 1992)

Good eeeevening, children of the night! What sweet music you make! Seriously, you over there on the accordion? First rate stuff! This week on “Then and Now,” we bring you a special treat: a three-fur! Yes, we’re dealing with a cinematic character who can’t be contained to a mere two movies: Count Vlad Irving Dracula! (not many people know about his middle name).  Yes, he needs one! Two! Three! Three movies! Ah ah ah! {insert thunderclap sound effect} We’ve got Bela Lugosi (spooky Dracula), Frank Langella (sexy Dracula) and Gary Oldman (what-the-flippin’-heck-is-this-crap Dracula).  Give a little listen and see how we rate and rank these three interpretations of the classic character . . . if you dare! Oooo! Very scary!

Episode 47: Godzilla (1956, 1998)

Welcome to another in our “What, This Again?” series, where we compare originals with their remakes.  Now, we may not be talking great movies this week, but the guy we’re talking about, he’s a true classic, am I right? You know him, you love him, you flee from him in terror, let’s bring him up here, folks: Godzilla! Let him hear you in the back! . . . Aaaand he’s crushed the dais and all our special guests.  Well, that’s our Godzilla! Yes, we’re discussing the original “Godzilla, King of Monsters,” one of the generative kaiju movies, and the 1998 American . . . remake? Tribute? Knockoff? Starring that king of terror, Matthew Broderick.  Say what you will, the man is no Raymond Burr.  You know the story (big lizard stomps all over major city, people object and try to stop him), but how does the telling vary? Come pick up what we’re laying down, man!

Episode 46: Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956, 1978)

Hello, fellow normal average earth humans.  This week, on this very normal human podcast made by humans for other humans to listen to, we are continuing with our very normal, in no way unusual, series which we have entitled “Then and Now” or “What This Again.”  Ha ha.  Our secondary title is quite whimsical in a way that all of our fellow earth-dwelling humans will find amusing.  This week, we will discuss two versions of the very nonsensical and utterly impossible story “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” So silly, these movies are.  They both suggest an invasion of the miserable delightful planet Earth by a clearly superior plant-based species that can almost perfectly duplicate human beings.  How entertainingly laughable.  You cannot tell because this is written text, typed by human fingers, but I, the normal human author, am shaking with laughter at this very moment at the idea of such an invasion.  So please, sit back on your human-made couches and listen to your human- in-every-way hosts discuss these absurdist fantastical movies that are in no way meant to be a warning of anything at all.  To ensure your comfort, please feel free to recline on the special green plant-motif couch cushions we have provided you.  Check behind your couch.  You will find them.  Sit back, rest, and let our podcast lull you into a peaceful, safe sleep that will in no way cause your neural patterns to be duplicated in a nearby pod. I mean couch cushion. 

Episode 45: Ocean’s 11 (1960, 2001)

Ring-a-ding-ding, you cuckoo cats! Pick up what we’re laying down; we got us two versions of the caper flick “Ocean’s 11”.  We got us the 1960 version starring Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr. and pretty much everyone else they knew, and we got us the 2001 version, Clyde, starring Brad Pitt, George Clooney and a ton of other groovy cats.  Both movies are loaded with famous people, both movies involve a casino heist, so which one swings and which one . . . doesn’t swing? Ok, there’s a reason I was never invited to be in the Rat Pack.  Apart from the fact I hadn’t been born yet. Check out the Chairman of the Fjord (I’m pretty sure that’s what they called Sinatra; he was Norwegian, right?) and George “No Nickname” Clooney.  Ring-ding, ding-dong, . . . um, twinkies?

Episode 44: Yojimbo/Fistful of Dollars (1961, 1964)

This week we’re taking a slightly different approach.  Thinking outside the box.  Shifting the paradigm.  Gleaning the cube. Shellacking the hamster. Something like that.  We’re taking on two movies by two different directors from two different countries with very different styles.  Technically, these two movies are very different: one is a black-and-white masterpiece about a rogue Samurai by legendary Japanese director Akira Kurosawa, and one is a classic in-color Sergio Leone “spaghetti Western” starring iron-jawed Clint Eastwood as The Man With No Name (except someone actually calls him by his name at some point).  But “Fistful of Dollars” is very clearly a remake of “Yojimbo.” Different settings, different details but almost identical plots and themes.  So, did Mr. Leone get permission from Mr. Kurosawa to create the same movie but with horses and guns? Umm . . . not so much.  Which is the better movie? Who are we to judge? Well, we’re Max and Mike.  Thought you knew that.  Come on, it’s part of the web address! Give a listen and get more details.

Episode 43: Charade/The Truth About Charlie

Welcome back to our “Then and Now” series (also called “What, This Again?”) where we compare and discuss a classic movie and one of its remakes. This week it’s the romantic comedy/thriller “Charade” and its 2002 remake “The Truth About Charlie.” Both movies have the same plot, of course: a young woman in an unhappy marriage returns to Paris to find both that her husband is dead and he was not who she thought he was. The original has Audrey Hepburn, Walter Matthau, and Cary Grant as the leads. The remake has Thandie Newton, Tim Robbins, and . . . Mark Wahlberg. Want to take a guess as to which is the better film? Well, don’t bother! Listen to us and we’ll tell you. Isn’t that easier?

Episode 42: The Thomas Crown Affair (1968, 1999)

Welcome to a new series here at Max, Mike; Movies! This time we’re tacking “Then and Now,” wherein we discuss a classic (or at least “old”) movie and one (or more) of its remakes and compare, contrast, convulse, confusticate and consommé the two. This week we’re talking about the classic heist movie “The Thomas Crown Affair,” filmed originally in 1968 with Steve McQueen and Faye Dunaway and remade in 1999 with Pierce Brosnan and Rene Russo. Two very different takes on what is essentially the same crime story, although one involves banks and one involves museums and strange Magritte jokes. Join us for this new chapter, won’t you?

Episode 41: Anchorman: the Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)

I’m Ted Baxter; here now, the news.  Flawless impression, right? This is one of my Guilty Pleasures, the Will Ferrell comedy “Anchorman.”  Yes it’s juvenile and as lowbrow as you can get without being a neckbeard but it makes me laugh and the cast is amazing, as are the cameos.  Seriously, how many movies are there that have appearances by Tim Robbins, Danny Trejo, and Jack Black. Oh. Really? That many? Huh.  I had no idea.  Well, anyway, this one is a lot of dopey fun and it’s the movie that spawned a thousand memes (“Well, that escalated quickly!” “I love lamp.”) So slap on some Sex Panther, put on some jazz flute and dust off your many leather-bound books as we tackle the movie that asks the question “Why even bother trying to be classy?”

Episode 40: Kentucky Fried Movie (1977)

Herein, forthwith, etc, is another Guilty Pleasure; this time it’s one of the earliest works of the writers Abrahams, Zucker and Zucker, the mad minds behind the “Airplane!” movies.  Heavily influenced by sketch comedy (this movie premiered the same year as “Saturday Night Live”), “Kentucky Fried Movie” is a series of vignettes parodying all sorts of tv, movie, and commercial styles, from martial arts movies to sexual coaching tapes to . . . porn?! Is it tasteful? No. Is it a bit dated? Yes. Does it drag at times? Sure. Is it funny? Well, give a listen (spoiler: yes it is!) It may all seem a bit much but in case of emergency, this podcast comes equipped with Big Jim Slade, so there’s nothing to worry about.  So join us, and find out how zinc oxide affects your life. Film at eleven.