BEST EPISODES of Marc Maron WTF PODCAST!

Catching Up

PODCASTS : Currently Listening to WTF. There is a reason why people who hate interviewers and hate interviews decide to do this show.

Marc Maron manages to be actually concerned and interested in what these people have to say, and just wants to have a conversation with them and it illicits a trust in the interviewed and the listener. And it comes across. There is a reason President Obama chose this podcast to give arguably one of the most potent public interviews/conversations a seated President has ever given.

There is something about audio that lends itself to an intimate conversation better than video. It involves the listener in the theater of the mind, and you end up actually listening to people rather than just watching the spinning plates, the stock in trade of most tv talk shows.

Airing since 2009, now in its eighth year, The first three years of the WTF Podcast it was strictly comedians. But the names became ever larger so that by the end of 2011 he was interviewing movie star level comedians.

2012 was when it really transitioned from a comedian interview show to just a great ‘whoever interests me’ interview show. And 2015 with the startling appearance of President Obama on the show is when it rocketed into the Stratosphere of world wide prominence, with now a whole new level of guests appearing.

Episode #327 from 2012 starring Jimmie Walker, was recommended by another great podcast… 11oclock Comics, and became my first introduction to Marc Maron and WTF. That episode, a brilliant show that is a wonderful history of comedy, it remains one of the best episodes, and I’ve been hooked ever since.

Mark Maron’s WTF is arguably not just one of the best ‘podcast’ shows, but is orders of magnitude better than any ‘talk show’ you’ll find on TV, or cable, or streaming.

Here are a few episodes that stand out for me as, not just this show done well, but really pivotal and important additions to culture and the history of entertainment.

This is by no means a comprehensive list, just some of the ones that stood out to me.

Without further ado they are:

#327 JIMMY WALKER 2012 Brilliant and informative history of post 60s comedy and the comedy clubs
REMEMBERING ROBIN WILLIAMS August 11 2014 – Heartbreaking and an essential listen
#523 BOB NEWHART 2014 Excellent
#544 ANDRE ROYO 2014 Fun
#593 HENRY WINKLER 2015 Rich
#605 TOMMY DAVIDSON 2015 Engrossing
#613/614 PRESIDENT OBAMA 2015 Podcast of the Year
#621 SIR IAN MCKELLAN 2015 Riveting and charming, and a masterclass on being an actor and surviving it
#622 WYATT CENAC 2015 Compelling
#624 SINBAD 2015 I like that he stood up for Bill Cosby, as Cosby remains very much THE comedian of much of the pivotal years of the late 20th century, and remains a person I hold in high regard
#638 SIR PATRICK STEWART 2015 Genius and very open about a harrowing coming of age
#684 WILLIAM FRIEDKIN 2016 Brilliant
#761 MIKE SHANNON 2016 Unexpectedly charming and nuanced
#783 BIll PAXTON 2017 Wonderful
#804 WALTER HILL 2017 Great and Bittersweet stories. Including playing part of episode #783 at Bill Paxton’s funeral

Hear these and more here:

https://wtfpod.libsyn.com

BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF – B-Movie Cast Ep #385

First I’m so happy the B-MOVIE podcast, the labor of love creation of Vince Rotolo, is continuing in the capable hands of Mary R, Nick and Juan. I’ve been listening to the show for a (it’s almost impossible to believe) decade now, and it has always been one of the joys that accompanied me while I work or during commutes. A repeated Welles Award Winner it is and has always been… podcasting at its best.

Latest episode THE BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF is a great one, and I completely agree with Nick, it is a great film. Informative and fun episode on Christophe Gans best film.

And here’s links to purchase the movie:

A nice 2 disk DVD version with special features and multiple versions

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And a nice quality Bluray with the director’s cut but missing features

Brotherhood of the Wolf [Blu-ray]

This is a movie worth double dipping on. Get both versions!

And subscribe to the B-Movie Cast here:

http://bmoviecast.com/feed/

SHORT FILMS OF THE DAY : The Short films of Alejandro Suarez Lozano

When I can find nothing of appreciable interest in the long form format I turn to short films. And there are real magnificent gems to be found there from David F. Sandberg’s LIGHTS OUT to Alec Peter’s brilliant PRELUDE TO AXENAR.

A new addition I’ve recently stumbled on, are the short films of Alejandro Suarez Lozano.

His THE FISHERMAN is a well paced, well performed and beautifully shot tale of a Fisherman haunted by the one that got away. With traces of THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA and MOBY DICK this visually adept tale of man vs nature also adds the fragile geopolitical overtones of the third world and the first world fighting for space in a 21st century poised to outgrow them both. The ending is both unexpected and perfect.

His HIDDEN SOLDIER follows a soldier on a mission behind enemy lines during World War II. Vividly told in haunted Blacks and Greys, this one pulls you along to an ending that is both audacious and chilling.

Both films are the calling card of a filmmaker to expect increasingly great films from.

The best way to see these two films? Use the link below and view them on the Director’s site and tell him… HT sent ya!

https://www.asuarezlozano.com/films

Short Films of the Day : Jean-Yan Babois’ BEHIND and CHERI

BEHIND- This short does everything right initially but falls apart at the climax with a mediocre ending. Would anyone actually do what the protagonist did in that situation, and the reveal was just sub-par.

CHERI- Much better is this slow-burn 2016 short with an ending that nails the landing.

You can view both the shorts via the YOU TUBE streaming channel on either Roku or Amazon Fire. I prefer the streaming options to the YouTube website as this way you can avoid the idiotic comments that Youtube fails to moderate/cleanup. I would never recommend sending someone direct to the Youtube website.

Still don’t have a Roku or an Amazon Fire? Here are my links to the ones to get:

 

Roku Premiere+ Streaming Media Player

Amazon Fire TV | Streaming Media Player

7 Reasons why AMAZON PRIME is a lot more fun to surf and use than Netflix! May 2017 Edition!

While Netflix  has doubled down on becoming a huge and successful producer of its own content, increasingly they do this at the expense of being what they were… namely a great and fun repository and consolidator of diverse TV shows and movies.

They have recently removed grades for their content, instead replacing it with a percentage that is supposed to represent how close to your taste the content should be. It is pretty useless.

If you don’t know what you want to watch, Netflix doesn’t make it particularly  user friendly to surf and find something.

Amazon on the other hand is a joy to surf.

1/First, if you are an Amazon Prime member they have an inventory of movies that is probably 10 times ( at least) what Netflix has.

2/They allow you to play trailers of the movies and TV shows! That’s a HUGE plus

3/ They  rate the movies and tv shows on a 5 star scale that I have found to be relatively accurate, and VERY helpful.

4/ They have a tremendously useful feature that lets you see what other users watch after viewing a specific title. It’s like being at a video store and having knowledgeable clerks provide you dozens of recommendations! Far more useful than Netflix’s anemic percentage algorithm.

5/The search funtion is far more user friendly than Netflix’s subpar option

6/You are able to turn on and off subtitles while the content is playing. In Netflix you have to get out of the content to make changes

7/The way you can browse movies and genres in a side scrollong format is far more pleasing to the eye than Netflix’s interface.  Amazon Prime for me very much captures, as close as you can digitally, the video store vibe. That thrill of searching shelves, and looking at box art, and seeing what is popular by using the ‘customers viewed’ function. And it improves on that exerience because of the ease of use of viewing trailers and just the hugeness of their inventory which is vastly superior to any brick and mortar video store ever was.

 

For these reasons I find myself spending WAY more time surfing Amazon Prime Video and finding cool, little known items to add to my mountainous Watchlist (from Shaw Brothers Martial Arts to Spaghetti Westerns to Black New Wave to Italian Neorealism to Modern straight-to-video-horror goodness!). My recent cool find is nearly a dozen Bigfoot or Bigfoot related films. I love BIGFOOT films! 🙂

So kudos to Amazon Prime for being May 2017s Best Video on Demand Service!

 

 

 

Fantastic Fridays: OPIUM AND THE KUNG-FU MASTER Roku Amazon Prime Movie Review!

THE SHAW BROTHERS tends to be thought of as a maker of period/classic Kung Fu Films, and while that is their bread and butter, there is a wealth of diversity in the Shaw Brothers’ Output that isn’t readily apparent.

But once you start diving into their catalog you find a wealth of diversity in genre and period and storytelling.

The Message/Anti-Drug  Movie was a staple of Nancy Reagan era politics. She the bandaid to her husband’s cartel creating foreign policy that was flooding the inner cities with white death.

In OPIUM AND THE KUNG-FU MASTER  you find the message movie wrapped in great sets, cinematography, performances, script and stellar fight scenes. Enjoyable and addictive movie from beginning to last superb fight scene.

Watch it via your Roku or Fire TV and catch it free courtesy of AMAZON PRIME. The print on Amazon prime is in superb hd quality and is the most affordable way to see this movie. the bare-bones bluray is unfortunately quite expensive.

however, it is definitely one to own/have in your collection if you can swing it. it is one of the best shaw brother movies.

Opium and the Kung Fu Master [Blu-ray]