The Cult of Matt and Mark show

The Cult of Matt and Mark

Summary: A discussion of cult films by two guys located in a basement somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. Matt holds a B.S. and M.S. in Physics, and works as an aerospace engineer. Mark holds a B.S. in biochemistry and works as a research technician... both are graduates of Snohomish High School Class of 91/92 respectiviely, none of which qualifies them to discuss film in any meaningful way... so... "caveat emptor" and all that.

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 304 Romeo + Juliet | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

We continue our "Young Lust" theme with the crazy-ass Luhrmann joint Romeo + Juliet. Yes it's Billy Shakespeare (kind of), but the frenetic images and neck-snapping cuts overwhelm to a point that uptight Bard-heads may find "le'essence" diminished. Mark and Matt are not of that camp. An adaption for the MTV-video-games generation? Sure. But what the hell. Despite the R n' J focus, the film shines with its supporting players, specially Tybalt, Mercutio, Father Lawrence and the Nurse. So let's head off to our Sophomore English class shall we and enjoy some star-crossed love action. Download: 304 Romeo + Juliet

 303 The Dreamers | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

"Young Lust" continues with our review of  NC-17 rated The Dreamers from 2003 by Bernardo Bertolucci. Matt and Mark get into the world of the over-heated Paris apartment's artificial realms of cinema, sex, and sibling co-dependence. Heavily driven by the nostalgia of the chaotic Paris streets of 1968, it's hard not to see why the Bohemians of this era champion this film. However, there's something stranger and darker going on that's hard to comprehend. While having unending sex with Isabelle (Eva Green) for days on end sounds enticing (well, at least for dudes), the creepy monitoring of her brother Theo is the price Michael pays. So off the map is this strange trio, the mere act of asking someone out on a date breaks the status quo. Download: 303 The Dreamers

 302 The Blue Lagoon | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Our "Young Lust" theme rolls on with the odd-ball Rater R teenage sexual exploration movie The Blue Lagoon. There's a lot of things that The Blue Lagoon isn't, which may be it's problem. It's not an adventure story and it's not a steamy sex drama, leading to a confused movie going audience. What is it? A Disney-esque Cinemax cross-over and neither? Allegedly faithful to the 1903 book, its problems may lie in its true-faith adaptation of the original Victoria novel (which may have not been very good). Even Brooke Shields conspicuously placed hair frustrates the viewer. Regardless, the cinematography shines through even though everything else seems to pale (and shrivel). Download: 302 The Blue Lagoon 

 301 Say Anything | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Matt and Mark start our "Young Lust" theme with the classic Cameron Crowe late 80's teen romance film Say Anything! Why do all Gen X women love Loyd Dobbler? Why? Because he's an absolutely nearly perfect good guy with few/if-any flaws. Everyone loves Loyd and he loves everyone, despite his minor if negligible personality quirks like the "talking thing" and the obligatory adolescent aimlessness that was the hallmark of a generation. And at the end, we all cheer Diane's reunion with Loyd, because if she hadn't taken him back, we could collectively agree she's the worst human being on the planet.  Download: 301 Say Anything

 Bonus Episode #4 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Matt is back from Scotland and it's time for our centennial bonus episode now that we've completed our 300th film review (sort of). A mixed back of discussion topics that are meandering at best. Hold fast and you'll get our last 100 episode recap. Hopefully we'll be around for a bonus episode in 2021! Hope you've had as much fun listening to us as much as we've had talking about movies for the past 7+. Download: Bonus Episode #4

 300 300 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Stop! Sparta-time... This week we review the obligatory 300 for our 300th podcast. Every one of our prior episodes like a fallen Spartan at Thermopylae, buff, ripped, free, and bloody. A perfect exercise in the notion of style-over-substance, 300 delivers a healthy plate of jingoism and old-timey masculinity to pump up our inner Conan the Barbarian. What is it about the "few against many" theme? Not sure, but suffice it to say the Spartans weren't your typically boot-strapping citizen soldiers. Atop a slave-fueled pyramid scheme, Mark and Matt ponder King Leonidas of Sparta's "freedom" rallying cry. I suppose everything's relative (and not exactly fair) in love and war. Download: 300

 299 Apocalypto | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

This review we go pre-Columbian with the Gibson action-chase film Apocalypto. Despite the criticism of its classic period Mayan portrayals, Apocalypto is a violent action film akin to modern fair. Why set it in during the Mayan fall? Why not? Despite it's odds-and-ends of Meso-american history, it commits no greater sins than your average sword and sandals epic. What Gibson shows us is something no one has ever seen in Hollywood films. Ever wondered what it might be like to be atop a Mayan period during an eclipse? Apocalypto gives you a peak, and for what its worth, it is distinctly memorable. Download: 299 Apocalypto

 298 Hard Target | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

We get around to finally putting out another podcast, and this time? The Woo/Van Damme joint Hard Target! Complete with doves, sub-machine guy dude on dirt bikes.. this film has it all for those pining for a Cajun flavor Hong Kong actioner! Can we dismiss Van Damme's Belgian-Cajun creole and Wilfred Brimley's only known un-codgery film role? Yes we can! If you like a boot kick to the head at 40 mph hour along with class-warfare themes, order up some Hard Target! Download: 298 Hard Target 

 297 Enter the Dragon | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

"Wwwaaaah! Chewaaaah!" Time to Enter the Dragon with our Seattle homey Mr. Bruce Lee! Even though heavily borrowed from similar spy tropes, Enter the Dragon was daring in its marketing. While kung fu theater was a Hong Kong staple, bringing it into the US mainstream required a multi-prong (and multi-racial) tact that brought out Mr. Lee's savvy. "A white guy, a black guy, and and Asian guy walk into a bar/death-ring tournament..." Unfortunately Mr. Lee's pioneering legacy still has a long way to go. Asian leading men in the US mainstream are still absent for the most part some 45 years later, much to our detriment. Download: 297 Enter the Dragon 

 295 Fire and Ice | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

This go 'round we review the Bakshi/Frezetta joint Fire and Ice from 1983. For its time, a solid outing by the sorta like 'em/hate 'em Bakshi (Cool World anyone?). Crutching heavily on Frazetta's muscular fantasy exotica, the look of the film and its rotoscoping bring to life the static comic book "je ne sais quoi." Matt laments the luke warm relationship with adult themes and animation while bemoaning the silly look of today's live-action comic book fair. We both take a nostalgic journey into the sci-fi book cover art of yor, discussing our favs. While not to be left out, the mall standard Thomas Kincaid (painter of light) is given his due credit for his pre-historic matte work on F&I. Sadly, his fantasy contributions never usurped his twee cottage themes beloved by grandmothers in middle-America. Download: 295 Fire and Ice

 294 Krull | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Matt and Mark review the 80's sci-fi/fantasy fusion film Krull! Diametrically opposed, Matt and Mark square off about what Mark liked and Matt did not! A highly derivative epic, Krull attempts to mash-up the tropes of high fantasy classic quest with something a little more Star Wars. Does it work? Despite its many stumbles of illogic and poorly sketched motivations, Krull is a well-filmed and produced popcorn movie with a decent set of supporting characters and a few trippy set pieces. Nostalgia may have been Matt's greatest enemy here, while Mark enjoyed it for what is... whatever that may have been. Download:  294 Krull

 293 Two-Lane Blacktop | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

It's Matt and Mark's 7th Anniversary of doing the podcast, and for this go 'round we finish up with our 70's car movie theme with the artsy Two-Lane Blacktop. With a set of steamy hunky rock n' rollers racing about in a built out 55' Chev, this is as American as it gets... or is it? TLB has been debated as a 'metaphor' due to the sparseness of its character sketches (if they can even be called sketches at all), but what they're a metaphor for and what archetypes they represent are not obvious or clear. In the end, we don't really know these characters other than what meaning we graft on to them. Despite it's subtext, the film captures the early 70's zeitgeist of the post-Love era, which if anything, is an interesting cultural time more and more alien to us 21st Century folks. Download:  293 Two-Lane Blacktop

 292 Death Race 2000 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

This go 'round Matt and Mark continue our 70's car movie them with the campy Death Race 2000. Like a macabre Cannonball Run, DR2K takes place in a futuristic dystopia where the sweaty masses (somewhere off-camera) are appeased by the breads and circuses of the titular race. Does it make any sense? Not really, but we go with it anyhow. Composed of farcical racers and their campy race cars, one can help but be reminded of far better fair in Swarzenegger's Running Man, specifically when it comes to production value. Matt takes issue with lack of geographic framing (no St. Louis does not have a Mediterranean climate and rolling coastal mountain ranges) while Mark highlights some of the film's more nonsensical nonsense. Perhaps more salient in the early 70's than it is today, DR2K remains entertaining high concept. Download: 292 Death Race 2000

 291 Mad Max | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Matt and Mark continue our 70's car movie theme with the quintessential movie that started it all, the original 1979 Mad Max. Mark declares it to be his favorite of the Max saga as its characters have yet to enter the realm of post-apocalyptic genre fiction. With real characters and a recognizable yet distorted quasi-present, we can feel Max's reality more than the nuclear wastelands of the Humongous. Matt revels in the badassery of the 70's muscle car with a middle-aged crisis wish to one day ride into the empty deserts behind the wheel of an 800 hp super-charged v8 pursuit special (specifically the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon, a mere $83k). Hopefully fully equipped with Android Auto and a 4G link to my Spotify catalogue. Download: 291 Mad Max

 290 McQ (and Rendezvous) | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Matt and Mark do up a double feature this week (kind of) for our 70's car-movie theme with the 1976 short "Rendevous" and the John Wayne 1974 Neo-Noir McQ. Matt waxes nostalgic over his favorite city Paris, while both Matt and Mark wax nostalgic over the uncrowded free-ways of early 70's Seattle. As Seattle natives, we ponder the set pieces of Wayne's McQ and its set-piece car chase, while parsing out the acting talents of the venerable and storied Wayne. Is it a Bullitt knock-off? Does it matter? Foreign to both Wayne's Western canon and the zeitgeist of early 70's popcorn cinema, we try to appreciate McQ with fresh eyes. Despite its mediocre reviews, Wayne is certainly a charismatic actor worthy of his legend. Download: 290 McQ (and Rendezvous)


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