Episode 52: The Black Cauldron (1985)

What ho, valiant varlets! We got us a brand new “I Keep Meaning to Watch That” entry.  This one is Mike’s choice and involves an obscure Disney animated film (which I know sounds like a contradiction in terms): 1985’s “The Black Cauldron.” Can’t understand why this wasn’t a bigger hit; who wouldn’t want to watch a whiny swineherd who thinks he’s a hero with his precognitive-for-some-reason pig do battle against one of the most one-dimensional Disney villains of all time? Plus, we’ve got one of the most annoying “comic relief” sidekicks in history: Gurgi, the Jar Jar Binks of old-school Disney.  Does the film have redeeming qualities? Why isn’t it better known? All will be revealed, as we consult our clairvoyant aardvark, Clarence.  Speak to us, Clarence! Speak! . . . Um . . . anybody out there speak aardvark?

Episode 51: Key Largo (1948)

Hail and well met, friends and fanciers! This week on Max, Mike; Movies we’re starting a branding spanking (a spanking! A spanking!) new series (awwww!): “I Keep Meaning to Watch That.” In it, Mike and I take turns choosing a classic, famous, or infamous movie that we’ve always meant to watch but have never gotten around to actually . . . you know, watching.  This week is my choice: the 1948 Bogey-and-Bacall classic “Key Largo”.  What’s that? Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall aren’t enough for you? Geez, what is your deal? No seriously, how about we throw Edward G. Robinson and Lionel Barrymore into the mix? Yes, the mix gets a bit lumpy but it’s totally worth it.  Lend us an ear (we’ll give it back, we promise)!

Episode 50: They Drove Us to Drink!

Wel . . . wel . . . welcome to fiftieth *hic* amplitude, no, wait, epishode, episode of Mix, Mork; Moogies.  No, no, wait, I got this: the fiftieth thingy of Maalox, Meringue; Smoothies. *hic*, shorry, shorry, hang on . . . Sheriously, I mean, seriously, this is our fiftieth episode! The big five-oh! And we’ve decided to do something special for all you loyal, sober listeners: we’re just taking this episode to talk about the worst movies we can remember seeing.  I mean the real stinkers, the ones that made us, or almost made us, walk out of the theater (remember theaters? People used to see movies in them, back in the Long Ago).  But of course there’s no way we could talk about these cinematic crapburgers in a rational state of mind, so Mike and I took the opportunity, as we were both in the same geographical location, to . . . um . . . fortify ourselves with a few small libations of . . . . ok, we got drunk, ok? We knocked back a few, I got more pompous, Mike somehow got stuck in an English accent.  Yes, these are movies that quite literally drove us to seek solace in sweet, sweet booze.  Pour one out for the fallen films and join us in our drunken ravings!

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?