Your friends in podcasting (AND broadcasting!) have quite the week to discuss! As the holidays approach, and Covid-19 dashes Dean’s travel plans, Awards Season in Hollywood gets underway. The National Board of Review and the New York Film Critics Circle announced their winners of the best in cinema for 2021, and a consensus has begun to form through critics Top Ten lists about the best of the year in television. Dean and Phil discuss it all. They also try to make sense of the latest in the accidental shooting on the set of “Rust”. A whole lot of classic films get discussed, including which films may have best depicted what life in America was really like in the mid-1980’s. A new documentary series about The Beatles from Peter Jackson gets reviewed and four actors and a musician get remembered in our penultimate installment of “Celebrity Deaths” for 2021. If nothing else, you will learn that the movie Beau Geste is NOT the movie Gunga Din and director Wim Wenders is NOT director Werner Herzog.
Sure, Covid-19 may be no laughing matter, but Phil Leirness gets things started with a quarantine lockdown joke nonetheless before he and Dean Haglund dig down into the protests surrounding stay-at-home orders, the hopes they have for how society might change in the long-term, and about the dangers of placing your faith in “distrust”. Ageism in Hollywood gets discussed, and then “Star Trek: Picard” and season 2 of “Star Trek: Discovery” get compared and get praised before the commercial break. In the back half of the show, Phil regales Dean with “Star Trek”-related tales involving the likes of JJ Abrams and … Toshiro Mifune?! In “Celebrity Deaths”, two of the all-time great character actors, three legendary jazz musicians, a ground-breaking sculptor, a pop-culture influencing illustrator, an award-winning cinematographer, and a glass-ceiling breaking animator get remembered. Keep calm, stay safe, and enjoy YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour!
In many ways, this week’s show is a sequel to last week’s episode #534, with the promised celebration of Jeanne Moreau’s life and career, an email from a listener about Tom Jones’ “The Young New Mexican Puppeteer” and more from the British Film Institute List of “the 50 films you should see by the age of 14”.
Unlike most sequels, however, this show is even more irreverent, insightful and informative than last week’s!
The festivities commence with a clip of Dean on Australian television telling a (bestiality?) joke, and then after a special opening (a tribute to Glen Campbell), Dean comes out guns blazing, ranting about the internet speeds of his adopted land. After Phil calms him down, they discuss the news of David Letterman’s new show, they urge people to save the Salem Cinema (a jewel of the Pacific Northwest), they talk about an interview they did with the late Jim Marrs and they continue their discussion about the “death of discernment”, this time focusing on an appalling memo crafted by a then member of the National Security Council.
From there, it’s onto “Celebrity Deaths”, where, in addition to the Femme Fatale of the French New Wave and Glen Campbell, your friends in podcasting remember a Tony-winning star of Broadway’s “The Music Man”, the star of an early television western series turned right-wing anti-government activist, and the man inside the Godzilla costume.
Finally, Dean and Phil discuss a 1982 Australian western, a 1954 western that influenced the likes of Sergio Leone and Sam Peckinpah, the original King Kong, and the Will Rogers comedy Life Begins at 40.