Welcome to part one of a two-part installment of YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour wherein Dean and Phil will discuss the best in cinema of the year 2023. This is no ordinary “Top Ten” show. Ultimately, dozens of films and just as many topics will get explored. This week’s show actually begins with discussion of atmospheric rivers, of spreading a loved one’s ashes, of comparisons between the original Cape Fear and the Martin Scorsese remake, and the beloved athlete-turned-actor Carl Weathers gets remembered. Then, before setting their sights on the cinematic year that was, your friends in podcasting (and broadcasting) examine something last week’s guest (Luke Y. Thompson) said about what an all-time great year for movies 1999 was. It turns out he could not have been more right, and so Dean and Phil wonder, when looking back at 2023 many years hence, will it be as impressive as 1999 is now in the rearview mirror? That serves at the springboard into discussions of Wim Wenders, editing, Imax, and such films as Anselm, Perfect Days, Napoleon, Cocaine Bear, A Haunting in Venice, Oppenheimer and Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One. And, of course, the best thing about this week’s show is that it is “to be continued …”!
Dean previews his upcoming improv show. Phil previews his forthcoming travels with his cat. Dean and Phil analyze the latest news in the escalating showdown between the Hollywood studios and the creative unions, including the terms of the tentative agreement between the studios and the directors. Then, the rest of the show is about a handful of the greatest films of all time, including Casablanca (with fascinating and surprising stories about its making), Seven Samurai, Pickpocket and Out of the Past, and a couple of truly awful ones (a musical version of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde starring Kirk Douglas?!). Discussion of great actors, great editing, great cinematography, and Wabi-Sabi ensues!
This week, year 17 gets underway in style with the first part of a special two-part theme show where Dean and Phil discuss the cinematic legacies of two of the biggest stars of all time: Kirk Douglas and Burt Lancaster. This episode focuses on these famous actor-producers’ careers though the year 1960. And it also involves discussions of many other notable screen artists, from filmmakers like Billy Wilder, to performers like Barbara Stanwyck. So keep those chosen “watchlists” and/or “queues” handy as you will doubtless learn about a title or two (or a dozen) of movies you will want to enjoy or re-visit!
On the 8th of May 2007, good friends and collaborators Dean Haglund and Phil Leirness started to “change the way people listen to the internet” with a free weekly podcast called “From the Heart of Hollywood”. Eventually, of course, the show became known as YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour and today the show turns 16 years of age, old enough to drive itself! Your friends in podcasting (and broadcasting) commemorate the occasion with very special episode where they discuss the ways the world has changed since they started the show 16 years ago, and how they predict the world will be different 16 years from now!
Dean is back from Amsterdam and he and Phil have a lot to discuss! Dean has advice on travel, and has stories about Vermeer, Rembrandt and Heineken. Phil has stories about TCM host (and Czar of Noir) Eddie Muller, and stories about stepping down from his roles at the famed Los Angeles Breakfast Club. Dean and Phil discuss the possible forthcoming writer’s strike in Hollywood and in “Celebrity Deaths” remember the inventor of the game Settlers of Catan, the Oscar-winning production designer of the “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones” films, an Oscar-nominated character actor and a cartoonist beloved by several generations of fans.
You might not know the name Don Phillips, but you will definitely know the names of many the performers whose careers he launched as a casting director, and the films with which he was involved. He is one of four cultural titans that Dean and Phil remember in “Celebrity Deaths” on this week’s show, including a poet and founder of the mythopoetic men’s movement, an iconic Broadway composer, and a trombonist who received the highest honor ever bestowed on jazz musicians. Dean will update us on the latest in his bout with Covid-19, his travel plans, his live ghost hunts and his “Hellacious Renovations”. Phil will regale us with his birthday adventures, his deep dive into historic movie locations, and his exploration of the Manzanar “War Relocation Center”. Several movies will get analyzed as well, including a Kurosawa classic ripe for a modern-day remake, a film noir with a claim to the best dialogue of any movie ever, and a current box office hit that begs the question, “Does bustin’ make Dean & Phil feel good?”
This week’s brand new show is a whole lot of fun, with a cold open (about Dean’s former website), a special guest appearance (from Siren FM’s Alex Lewczuk), a discussion about why certain movies (especially in the “Star Trek” universe) seem like movies, whereas others seem like TV episodes, a review of Doctor Sleep, a celebration of Stanley Kubrick, an analysis of an all-time great movie monologue delivered by a powerhouse actress (Nicole Kidman), and a remembrance of actor-producer Kirk Douglas, along with a thoughtful conversation about the messy business of appraising legacies.