Sordid Cinema Podcast
Sordid Cinema Podcast #558: ‘Frailty’ Remains a Solid Horror Mystery

Sordid Cinema Podcast #558: ‘Frailty’ Remains a Solid Horror Mystery

October 26, 2020

Frailty Podcast Review

The late Bill Paxton’s 2001 directorial debut Frailty may have passed by unnoticed at the box office, but over time this low-budget, atmospheric horror film has maintained a steady appreciation. This week Rick and Patrick are joined by Montreal-based film writer and professor Matthew Hays to break down just what makes this underseen gem so good, as well as dive into its themes of religious piety and family dynamics. The story of a man who believes he has been chosen by God to destroy demons living as humans on earth delves into dark places, as this good-natured mechanic also turns his mission into a family affair – even as one of his sons thinks his father may be going insane.

From strong performances to an interesting script with an unreliable narrator, Frailty consistently engages the audience and is sure to surprise them as well with its many (too many?) twists. Join us as we sort out all the plot details and ponder the mysteries. How well does Frailty handle the supernatural elements? Would the film have worked even better with more ambiguity, or is the clarity of vision one of its strengths? For all this and more, have a listen!

Sordid Cinema Podcast #554: ‘Dressed to Kill’ is Draped in Stylish De Palma

Sordid Cinema Podcast #554: ‘Dressed to Kill’ is Draped in Stylish De Palma

July 29, 2020

Dressed to Kill Podcast Review

Though many may not rank it among his best (including our own Ricky D), Brian De Palma’s Dressed to Kill is nevertheless a perfect example of how a particular director can greatly enhance the material through individual craftsmanship and sensibilities. Sure, what should be a fairly simple story of a high-class call girl both investigating and fleeing from the mysterious woman she witnessed commit a bloody murder might get a bit needlessly convoluted and confusing thanks to De Palma’s screenplay, but there is never any doubt in the clarity of the visuals. The director brings his Hitchcockian best here, with several standout scenes worthy of discussion, including a virtuoso flirtation sequence in a museum, as well as a grisly slashing in an elevator.

 

In addition to the fantastic camerawork, Rick and Patrick also save some praise for the performances, many of which rise above the sometimes-hokey dialogue to create memorable characters (and yes, that praise includes Nancy Allen as call girl Liz). They also discuss De Palma’s influences, and though Dressed to Kill might seem like an overt homage to Hitchcock’s Psycho, it also owes something to giallo horror films of the day. These elements all come together to result in a stylish, adult thriller the likes of which modern audiences could use more of. But can Dressed to Kill still enjoy a wide appeal?

 

For all this and more, have a listen!

 

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Sordid Cinema Podcast #551: Why ‘La Haine’ is as Explosive 25 Years On

Sordid Cinema Podcast #551: Why ‘La Haine’ is as Explosive 25 Years On

June 16, 2020

La Haine Podcast Review

Twenty-five years ago, Mathieu Kassovitz’s French black-and-white drama crime drama La Haine sent shockwaves through the 1995 Cannes Film Festival, where it received a standing ovation and the Best Director prize.

A story of social unrest, La Haine was inspired by three isolated incidents involving the killing of unarmed young people by police officers (including the famous case of the 17-year-old Congolese Makomé M’Bowolé) that led to three weeks of riots in Paris and surrounding areas.

Starring Hubert Koundé, Saïd Taghmaoui, and Vincent Cassel (in his breakout performance), La Haine is set over 19 consecutive hours in the lives of three young men living in the impoverished, multi-ethnic public housing complexes known as Chanteloup-les-Vignes. We follow the three of them in the aftermath of a riot in a banlieue that left their teenage friend Abdel comatose in a hospital after being brutally beaten by the police. When Vinz recovers a gun lost by a cop during the riot, he feels empowered and decides to take revenge.

Twenty years on, La Haine feels more relevant than ever. It’s arguably the best film made about systemic racism and police brutality— easily the best film released in 2015— and one of the most powerful pieces of urban cinema ever made. Today on the Sordid Cinema Podcast we reflect on the film’s lasting significance and why it holds a special place in our hearts.

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Sordid Cinema Podcast #529: ‘Logan Lucky’ and ‘Split’

Sordid Cinema Podcast #529: ‘Logan Lucky’ and ‘Split’

September 17, 2017

This week on the Sordid Cinema podcast, Thomas O’Connor joins Patrick Murphy and Simon Howell to discuss Steven Soderbergh's out-of-retirement heist flick, Logan Lucky. In the second half of the show, we dig into M. Night Shyamalan’s Split.

Sordid Cinema Podcast #528: ‘Good Time’ and ‘Atomic Blonde’

Sordid Cinema Podcast #528: ‘Good Time’ and ‘Atomic Blonde’

September 15, 2017

This week on the Sordid Cinema podcast, Victor Stiff joins Ricky, Patrick, and Simon to discuss Good Time and Atomic Blonde.

Sordid Cinema Podcast #527: Best of the Fantasia Film Festival 2017

Sordid Cinema Podcast #527: Best of the Fantasia Film Festival 2017

September 1, 2017

This week on the Sordid Cinema Podcast, Rick, Patrick and special guest Thomas O'Connor sit down to discuss the best films of the Fantasia Film Festival. 

Sordid Cinema Podcast #522: ‘Baby Driver’

Sordid Cinema Podcast #522: ‘Baby Driver’

June 30, 2017

Like every Edgar Wright movie, the director’s sixth feature, Baby Driver, takes a wild concept and turns it into a brilliant exercise in high style. This time around, the director’s latest film is a wildly successful romantic-heist-musical-comedy, propelled from scene to scene with a lively soundtrack. One thing Baby Driver has going for it is its crowd-pleasing ability. Yes, folks, Baby Driver has it all: thrills, romance, suspense, dark comedy, nonstop action, a killer soundtrack and a star-making performance from Ansel Elgort. The question is, do we all like it? This week special guest Josh Slater-Williams joins us to discuss Wright’s most ambitious work to date as well as his recent interview with Wright himself. All this and more.

Sordid Cinema Podcast #514: ‘Green Room’ and ‘I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore’

Sordid Cinema Podcast #514: ‘Green Room’ and ‘I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore’

April 11, 2017

This week we sit down to discuss the debut film from Macon Blair, I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore – a messy piece of neo-noir and dark comedy that stars Melanie Lynskey has Ruth, a modern-day Travis Bickle and Elijah Wood, an oddball, heavy-metal-loving martial arts enthusiast. The odd pair of heroes cast themselves in a Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys detective story that swerves out of control into a blood-spattered nightmare. After that, we end the show with a review of Jeremy Saulnier’s third feature film, Green Room, a horror thriller that has all the makings of a cult classic. All this and more!

Sordid Cinema Podcast #512: ‘Trainspotting’ 20 Years Later Special

Sordid Cinema Podcast #512: ‘Trainspotting’ 20 Years Later Special

March 27, 2017

Danny Boyle’s bravura and celebratory adaptation of Irvine Welsh’s seminal novel blew the socks off the British film industry back in 1996. A zeitgeist phenomenon, the stand-out film of that year’s Cannes film festival became an international box office success and since then, it’s routinely featured in best British film lists, while the public voted it the best Scottish film of all time.  The thing about Trainspotting is that we simply haven’t seen a film quite like it since. It’s exciting, energetic, thought-provoking, and never lets up. But what about Trainspotting 2? It’s impossible to catch lightning in a bottle twice, yet that’s what director Danny Boyle is trying to do with his belated sequel to Trainspotting. This week it’s our Trainspotting special!

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