Episode 119: William Wyler: How to Steal a Million / The Children’s Hour

“Stills belong in the lobby, not on the screen.”

William Wyler, Director of How to Steal a Million and The Children’s Hour

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On Episode 119 of Drink in the Movies Michael & Taylor discuss their First Impressions of: Mortal Kombat & Voyagers. Then dig into two of William Wyler’s Feature Films: How to Steal a Million and The Children’s Hour.

Streaming links for titles this episode

The Children’s Hour is currently available to stream on Hoopla, Kanopy, and Tubi.

How to Steal a Million is currently available to rent and purchase on most major VOD platforms.

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Michael Clawson on Letterboxd | Taylor Baker on Letterboxd

Episode 95: RoboCop / Starship Troopers / Miami Vice

“I don’t underestimate audiences’ intelligence. Audiences are much brighter than media gives them credit for. When people went to a movie once a week in the 1930s and that was their only exposure to media, you were required to do a different grammar.”

Michael Mann

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This week on Drink in the Movies Michael & Taylor discuss their First Impressions of Project Power & She Dies Tomorrow and the Feature Films: RoboCop, Starship Troopers, and Miami Vice.

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Streaming links for titles this episode

RoboCop is currently available on Prime Video

Starship Troopers is currently available on Tubi TV

Miami Vice is currently available to rent or purchase

Episode 81: Fantasia 2020 Part 2 / Survival Skills / PVT Chat / You Cannot Kill David Arquette

“I don’t want to lie. I dislike dishonesty. And I work in Hollywood, a town and a business that relies on a lot of falsehoods with people hiding behind different facades. I don’t want to be a part of that.”

David Arquette

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This week on Drink in the Movies Michael & Taylor discuss their First Impressions of: The Batman & Ammonite. Followed by the Fantasia Film Festival Titles: Survival Skills, PVT Chat, and You Cannot Kill David Arquette.

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PVT Chat is currently unavailable to rent.

The Lobster

Written by Michael Clawson

85/100

Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster is an expertly crafted and biting satire about the absurdity of modern attitudes towards single-hood and marriage. It depicts a dystopian future where single people are brought together and have 45 days to find a partner, or else be transformed into animal of their choosing. David, played by Colin Farrell, is a recent divorcee, and therefore one of the unlucky souls to be forced into the 45 day search for love. Upon arriving at a rural estate, known simply as The Resort, where singles are herded, he’s admitted as if he were a hospital patient, documenting his sexual preference, physical measurements, and, of course, the animal that he wishes to become should his quest for love be unsuccessful. His routine at The Resort involves staff-hosted and chaperoned mixers, “educational” lectures on the value of relationships, and hunts in The Woods for Loners, the band of singles that have shunned society’s romantic mandate. The rules by which the Loners operate are in dramatic opposition to the norm: mere flirtation is forbidden, and those caught canoodling are subject to violent punishment.

David’s experience ranges from hilarious to cringe-inducing and upsetting. Lanthimos exercises directorial precision and control throughout, which allows for a viewing experience that is wholly unique and unforgettable. The cinematography, which often positions characters off from center and brings attention to the cold and harsh interiors and landscapes, makes nearly every frame a sight to behold, and the string-heavy, sharply punctuated musical score eloquently enhances both the humorous and nightmarish turns of the narrative. The Lobster perfectly illustrates the ability of sound and camera-work to elevate a film’s impact.

The extent to which one will enjoy the film, however, depends on whether or not the viewer allows themselves to be enveloped by the world that Lanthimos creates. As is common in satire, many of the ideas and questions put forth by the narrative are often front and center; in other words, Lanthimos is anything but subtle in exploring what’s on his mind. Although it may be instinctive to try, analyzing its conceit while watching the movie would be exhausting because nearly every turn of events is not about audience-character connection, but rather the real-life experience that the moment reflects. The joy of seeing The Lobster results from wholeheartedly stepping into its world and forgetting our own until the credits have rolled, and only then reflecting on Lanthimos’ ideas about love and modern romance.

Michael Clawson originally posted this review on Letterboxd 06/19/16

Available on Netflix and Kanopy

The New World

Written by Taylor Baker

100/100

“There’s something I know when I’m with you that I forget when I’m away. Tell me, my love. Did you wish for me to come back and live with you again?”

Captain Smith

Almost 15 years ago this was my first Malick film. I must have been in my last year of middle school or thereabouts when this picture floored me and wracked my young mind with feeling I was unequipped to fully collate. I didn’t know how to put it to words then and I scarcely can now. It echoed itself in a way I hadn’t seen before in movies. It was poetic in it’s rhythm but classicist in it’s structure. It was a work of literature, yet it was visual. It was pregnant with feeling, but if you zoned out just a but you would miss morsels of nuanced dialogue. Yet if you did zone out you would still feel it’s pulse, perhaps even more.

The New World marked itself on my journey of loving stories in a personal way, that one normally speaks of love with. I still feel those emanations from the screen and speakers today, and am lavishly happy to see how well it hasn’t just held up, but marked itself as a milestone of the film medium. Malick’s filmography more than any other seems to benefit by being judged by feeling rather than any other criteria. Something that only Master-craftsmen can achieve. Not to mention his ability to write dialogue that is unceasingly worth quoting.

“Killed the God in me.”

Pocahontas

Snow drifts bleed into slight white flowers dotting branches, ladders lead toward the empty vast sky, men eat men, men betray and war with one another, and love exists in the cracks between.

Malick conveys the yearning to feel unrestrained and undefined in a bid to be consumed by love again. Then it ends like all things do, with a cemetery, water, and trees reaching toward the sky.

“I touched her long ago without knowing her name.”

John Rolfe

Taylor Baker originally published this review on Letterboxd 06/26/19

Discussed on Drink in the Movies Episode 43.

This entry is specifically regarding The New World: The Extended Cut available to rent from multiple sources.