Who doesn’t love a sequel?! Your friends in broadcasting & podcasting return with part 2 of their celebration of the best in cinema from 2023. If you listened to part 1, you know this is no ordinary “Top Ten” show. Ultimately, dozens of films and just as many topics will get explored. This week the topics include editing, black and white, curated experiences, gender identification, feminism, entertainment and films from a wide variety of filmmakers and genres, including Past Lives, Poor Things, The Holdovers, The Creator, All of Us Strangers and many more.
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.
Welcome to an excellent installment of your Chillpak Hollywood Hour that begins with tales of springtime before a couple of great soapbox moments courtesy of the “sensitivity editing” of Agatha Christie and newspaper headline treatments of black men in the media. An actress who starred in many beloved projects, a screenwriter behind crowd-pleasing movies, a singer in a legendary doo-wop band and the designer responsible for the way Phil smelled throughout his teens and twenties (!) all get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”. Dean champions Cocaine Bear, Elizabeth Banks, and the return of Nicolas Cage (not that he went anywhere). Phil regales with amazing original casting choices for a couple of popular recent films before launching into an appreciation of the fable-making on display in John Wick: Chapter 4.
This week’s show begins with Phil trying to surprise Dean with details of a very famous person who lived in what is now Dean’s hometown of Birmingham, Michigan, and then, Phil tries to stump Dean with a vintage movie ad (from 55 years ago!). Then, because they have been falling behind in discussing “Celebrity Deaths”, Dean and Phil will open the Chillpak morgue to discuss the huge amount of notables who shuffled off their mortal coils in the past week! In part 2, Dean and Phil discuss Ingmar Bergman’s Persona, the latest awards season news (including the SAG, DGA and Producers Guild nominations), and then they conclude with reviews of several films including The Kitchen Brigade, After Yang, Crimes of the Future and Bones and All.
Pile into the back of the car, buckle up, and join Dean and Phil, reunited on the mean streets of downtown Los Angeles, as they make their way into Hollywood for a live improv comedy show! On the way there, Dean reveals his Thanksgiving celebrations, Phil reveals his birthday celebrations, and they discuss the life and legacy of Irene Cara, and analyze a very important and interesting weekend at the box office. Such movies as Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, Spirited and The Fabelmans get reviewed. On the way back downtown, they take a deep dive into different kinds of improv comedy AND improv comics. Dean gets weepy about a robot documentary before he sings the praises of the Netflix series “Wednesday”. Phil does likewise with season 2 of “The Mysterious Benedict Society” before he and Dean close with thoughts about season 2 of “Avenue 5”.
Dean is getting into the spirit of Halloween, Phil is dressing up in steam punk to judge a fashion show, and they are both curious about Jim Thorpe PA, and they talk about all of this! The death of Nikki Finke inspires a celebration and analysis of the Deadline Hollywood website that was her creation and a discussion of a recent headline on the site about ageism in Hollywood. In “Celebrity Deaths”, Phil rants about people claiming anyone is “best known for” a particular work before he and Dean celebrate the lives and legacies of actress Angela Lansbury, actor Robbie Coltrane, author Peter Straub, groundbreaking disc jockey Art Laboe, and significant Hollywood matriarch Eileen Ryan. There is much discussion of the greatest film directors of all time (according to a 2002 Sight and Sound poll) before Dean and wrap things up where they began with Halloween-themed movie viewing.
This week, Dean and Phil discuss a limited television series about the making of “The Godfather”, Season 3 of Amazon’s “The Boys”, the new AMC series “Dark Winds”, and whether Dean was ever in an episode of “Lonesome Dove”. Phil’s travels to Turlock get talked about, as do lava rocks, the recent planetary alignment, Lily’s final week as president of The Los Angeles Breakfast Club, safety (or “warning”) art, and Braille Institute’s Braille Challenge. Your friends also respond to emails, tweets and texts from loyal listeners like you (yes, you!), pertaining to such topics as Kim Novak, the oft-discussed Skidoo, Jean Harlow, whether last week’s episode was a paid advertisement, and “Celebrity Deaths”.
Since 1984’s Risky Business, Tom Cruise has been one of the most reliable and bankable stars of major motion pictures. Since 1984’s Stranger than Paradise, Jim Jarmusch has been one of the most reliable and influential auteurs in independent cinema. This week, Dean and Phil compare and contrast these two icons’ filmographies, making recommendations, drawing parallels between two very different artists, and examining forty years of American culture and hundreds of years of American mythology in the process!
Phil (in Hollywood) and Dean (in the environs of Detroit) checked in with each other before, during and after Sunday night’s Oscars and recorded their conversation about the movie industry’s big night. There are insights, there are jokes, there is snark, there are criticisms, and oh, yes, Dean has been drinking!
Phil has been chasing trains all over California and he has stories. St. Patrick’s Day was this past week and Dean and Phil have jokes about that. In “Celebrity Deaths”, Oscar-winning actor William Hurt gets remembered and the controversy surrounding celebrations of his legacy will get examined. Star of the original “Godzilla” and a great story about him get discussed, and before the Chillpak Morgue closes, R&B great Timmy Thomas has his praises sung. This is, of course, the biggest week in Hollywood and Dean and Phil “go to the movies” to discuss Steven Spielberg’s next film (a sequel to a 1960s classic), the brilliance and pain and artistry of Richard Pryor as seen in Richard Pryor Live on the Sunset Strip and the inspiring visual storytelling on display in the works of Paolo Sorrentino, specifically his current Oscar nominee for Best International Film, The Hand of God.