It’s Happy Birthday to Dean Haglund and boy has he been celebrating! On this week’s show, you will hear all about his celebrations. You will also hear about his road trip to upstate New York. And you will hear about a very bizarre social calendar for Phil! The latest news in the writers and actors strikes gets discussed, as does the controversy surrounding “waivers” being granted to certain productions. Dean offers up at least one more television series from the past you might want to avail yourself of while you wait for new seasons of your current favorites. Phil sings the praises of “Star Trek: Picard” Season 3 and Season 1of “Shrinking”. Last week, Dean revealed what he thinks of as Robert De Niro’s 5 greatest performances. Phil follows up with a couple of alternative picks this week. Finally, the surprising box office performance (failure?) of Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One gets analyzed, and the film’s strengths get celebrated and missteps get dissected.
This week’s show picks up where last week’s show left off, in a cold open about Godard’s Contempt and Scorsese’s Raging Bull. Then, Dean and Phil talk about the importance of supporting movie theaters, and Dean offers up another vintage TV title ripe for viewing/re-viewing during what promises to be a very lengthy halt in television production. Phil shares deeply personal thoughts about two remarkable people who died this year. That leads to an edition of “Celebrity Deaths” dedicated entirely to great writers. Then, it’s back to Robert De Niro (and Raging Bull) as Dean celebrates what he believes to be the all-time five greatest performances by the multiple Oscar-winning legend.
A question from a loyal listener like you (yes, YOU!) leads to a passionate and thoughtful discussion about what television and movies you should be watching while no new television and movies are being made due to the writers’ and actors’ strikes. Moreover, Dean and Phil will discuss the ways all of us can greatly improve the chances of an equitable outcome to the contractual impasses. In honor of the actors, four frequently overlooked films boasting excellent performances by major stars will get remembered. And two of the greatest films of all time will get analyzed. Plus, this week’s show includes more on Raging Bull, further insights into “wabi-sabi”, and the return of “The Live Event of the Week”.
This week’s show begins with a cold open about Spanish film star Carmen Sevilla. It continues with Dean and Phil previewing an email from a loyal listener (that they will answer on NEXT week’s show). The email involves the ongoing Writer’s Guild strike and Dean and Phil use it as a springboard to discussing the latest labor negotiation news in Hollywood and to ponder the question “Is Ryan Murphy (once again) the worst person in the world?” Last week, the life and career of Oscar-winner Glenda Jackson was celebrated. This week, Phil reveals tidbits from her final (?) still-to-be-released movie, The Great Escaper (starring Michael Caine). After that, Dean and Phil offer up remembrances of three more great stars of the silver (and small) screen: Julian Sands, Frederic Forrest, and Treat Williams. The second half of the show is all about Indiana Jones (and “The Dial of Destiny”), Akira Kurosawa (and two of his independent films), and the Martin Scorsese classic Raging Bull.
Since it is Valentine’s Day, it’s only fitting that Dean and Phil are offering up a show that is nothing less than a love letter to movies, movie-going AND great comedic acting on television! In addition to a great story about Howard (“Dr. Johnny Fever”) Hesseman that involves the legendary Jack (“Dragnet”) Webb, and analysis of a handful of nominated films, shows and performances, Dean and Phil also engage in free-wheeling discussion about how we judge film and TV, how these works are consumed and what awards shows need to be moving forward. All that, plus a legend of visual effects and the Queen of Italian Cinema both get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”.
A lot of post-production work went into making this one of our best shows of the year! Dean regales with stories of drinking and jury duty, Phil remembers dear friend and true iconoclast Konrad Monti. Dean and Phil discuss Amazon’s “The Boys” (a show Dean might have actually influenced!) and the dire future of movie-going in the wake of James Bond and “Black Widow” being pushed again, which led to the 2nd largest U.S. theater chain closing, while the first largest still hasn’t fully re-opened! A terrific, and highly musical “Celebrity Deaths” involves celebrations of a great jazz musician (and subject of an awesome Netflix documentary), songwriter-singer-turned-actor Mac Davis, and 70’s-pop-queen-turned-therapist Helen Reddy! Finally, we transport you back to a certain rooftop in the historic L.A. neighborhood of Los Feliz for the conclusion of Dean and Phil’s ruminations on what filmmakers might make the list of their all-time favorites.