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The Essential Films Podcast
Discussing The Art of Cinema
Category: TV & Film
Location: Chicago, IL
A podcast devoted to the discussion of the greatest movies ever made, or The Essential Films. From the beginning of cinema history to present day, these films are crucial to the education of anyone who loves the art of film making.
by Adolfo Acosta
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December 21, 2016 02:20 PM PST
Hot dog! Merry Christmas! On today’s special holiday podcast adventure, Adolfo and Mark discuss the 1946 holiday classic: IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE! On today’s discussion: Mall shopping on the last weekend before Christmas The NES Classic The movie that defines all Christmas movies How the film touches even Adolfo’s cold heart The miracle that is Mr. Pibb How the sentimentality is earned At which point we get teary eyed “The Greatest Gift” Christmas card How Cary Grant was all wrong for the role A mini history of Liberty Films Capra and Stewart’s favorite film The secret origin of Jimmy Stewart The Christmas Tree capital of the world Why Lionel Barrymore was a perfect choice for Mr. Potter Mr. Potter = Ebeneezer Scrooge without the redemption The framing device of the film Why does Mr. Gower even have a bottle of poison? Apparently adults are allowed to slap children around in 1946 How many It’s a Wonderful Life references are there in The Simpsons? A deleted scene where George meets Potter much earlier in life Jimmy Stewart playing a teenager Donna Reed’s beautiful introductory shot “Aw pop, just a little.” George’s constant sacrifices Thomas Mitchell’s great adlib “We’ll wait for ya, baby…” The one-shot take of Reed and Stewart’s first kiss Bert and Ernie! Eyes swimming with tears How many kids does Martini have? How James Stewart didn’t want to glorify war on screen When you finally see George break A terrifying Santa mask The innovative new “chemical snow” created for the film The bridge guy! The one flaw of the movie! Not finding your true love means your vision fails “Merry Christmas you old Building and Loan!” “To my big brother George, the richest man in town!” ONIONS. The film’s failure at the box office, with awards and with critics The ridiculous copyright history Why Paramount owns the rights even though the film itself is technically in the public domain The Colorized version The kick to the gut that was 2016 PLUS REFERENCES TO: THE BISHOP’S WIFE (1947) YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU (1938) FORREST GUMP (1994) BRUCE ALMIGHTY (2003) HOME ALONE (1990) HOME ALONE 2: LOST IN NEW YORK (1992) BACK TO THE FUTURE PART II (1989) THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES (1946) JINGLE ALL THE WAY (1996) THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL (1992) SCROOGED (1988) SCROOGE (1951) A CHRISTMAS CAROL (1984) A CHRISTMAS CAROL (1999) DISNEY’S A CHRISTMAS CAROL (2009) MIRACLE ON 34th STREET (1947) SANTA CLAUS (1959) SANTA CLAUS CONQUERS THE MARTIANS (1964) A CHRISTMAS STORY (1983) THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS (1993) BLACK CHRISTMAS (1974) WHITE CHRISTMAS (1954) DIE HARD (1988) BATMAN RETURNS (1992) GREMLINS (1984) LINKS: Can You Survive Home Alone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NhijmGTwwo The Essential Films: essentialfilmspodcast.com SOCIAL MEDIA TWITTER: @EssentialFilms, @FPMoviePodcast, @Adolfo_Acosta, @Sportsguy515 FACEBOOK: The Essential Films: https://www.facebook.com/The-Essential-Films-130585803634489/?fref=ts
December 13, 2016 07:28 PM PST
Look for it only in books, for it is no more than a dream remembered... On today’s EPIC podcast adventure, Adolfo and Mark discuss the 1939 Hollywood classic: GONE WITH THE WIND! On today’s discussion: Hattie McDaniel becoming first African American to win an Academy Award One of the earliest films to sweep the Oscars The ups and down of respect amongst film critics How much money has GONE WITH THE WIND made? The Billion Dollar Club Our hesitation to watch the film our first time How Blockbuster didn’t carry anything older than the year 2000 How David O Selznick got the film made #NotMyRhett Why Gary Cooper turned down the role of Rhett Butler “Selznick’s Follie” The revolving door of directors The most unlikeable protagonist in history Mark can’t keep his potty mouth clean! The search for Scarlett O’Hara Leslie Howard’s least convincing southern accent An appearance by Superman The themes of masculinity throughout the film No one ends up happy How they faked Clark Gable dancing How the film got around the Hayes Code The best shot in the film How the “burning of Atlanta” was filled Uncle Billy! Scarlett as a feminist icon Survival as theme The rewriting of history A thinly veiled Ku Klux Klan raid How Rhett carrying Scarlett up the stairs is NOT the romantic scene many people think it is How Scarlett matures yet remains selfish “Frankly, my dear…” has more impact in context How Hattie McDaniel was not allowed to attend the Atlanta premiere Why it took so long for Gone with the Wind to air on television PLUS REFERENCES TO: ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT (1930) KING KONG (1933) THE WIZARD OF OZ (1939) IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946) BEN-HUR (1959) GETTYSBURG (1993) SCARLETT (1994) TITANIC (1997) THE LORD OF THE RINGS (2001-2003) AVATAR (2009) WATCHMEN (2009) THE ARTIST (2011) FIFTY SHADES OF GREY (2015) SAN ANDREAS (2015) THE HATEFUL EIGHT (2015) STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS (2015)
October 28, 2016 09:31 PM PDT
Happy Halloween! Just in time for Halloween, on today’s podcast adventure, Adolfo and Mark discuss the 1978 John Carpenter classic: HALLOWEEN! On today’s discussion: How Rob Zombie put his own spin on the much maligned remake When did Adolfo and Mark experience Halloween? How an iconic horror movie has little to no blood and gore Elementary school book fairs! Local video stores! (Shout out to the late Mr. Willie’s) John Carpenter’s early film career before he got the HALLOWEEN job Weird Al and Chris Hardwick in a HALLOWEEN movie? The William Shatner connection The film’s connection to PSYCHO The POV murder sequence that opens the film Slasher movies as morality plays The “Final Girl” trope Why we laugh at Tommy’s pain The relatively low body count Why you must always check the backseat of your car. Who cares about the the motivation of Michael Myers? Did the WWE rip off HALLOWEEN? You can’t kill Evil Carpenter’s excellent film score and how he can’t even read music. The glory days of VHS tapes! Is the film Misogynist or Feminist? The nany sequels and remake The ATARI 2600 video game! This week in Film History David Pumpkins (ANY QUESTIONS?) PLUS REFERENCES TO: • ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13 (1976) • BATMAN RETURNS (1992) • BRAM STOKER’S DRACULA (1992) • THE CABIN IN THE WOODS (2012) • DARK STAR (1974) • THE DEVIL’S REJECTS (2005) • THE FRIDAY THE 13th Series • HALLOWEEN (2007) • HALLOWEEN II (1981) • HALLOWEEN III: SEASON OF THE WITCH (1983) • HALLOWEEN H20 (1998) • GRINDHOUSE (2007) • MANIAC (2012) • THE NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET Series • THE PAGEMASTER (1993) • PSYCHO (1960) • THE THING (1982) • THE THING (2011) • THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD (1951) LINKS: • www.essentialfilmspodcast.com • https://www.facebook.com/TheEssentialFilms/ • https://twitter.com/Adolfo_Acosta • https://twitter.com/EssentialFilms • https://twitter.com/FPMoviePodcast • https://twitter.com/SportsGuy515
October 08, 2016 03:32 PM PDT
On today's podcast adventure, Adolfo and Mark are going to need a bigger boat as they go back into the water for Steven Spielberg's classic blockbuster JAWS. On today's show they discuss: • How did they first experience Jaws • The perfect blockbuster film • The Universal Studios Jaws Ride • Richard D. Zanuck’s sweet mustache • Steven Spielberg getting shut out for Best Director • The iconic John Williams score and how it trained the audience to expect the shark • The perfect use of jump scares • The difference between PG in 1975 and PG in 2016 • How an unseen monster is more terrifying • The greatest movie poster ever created • How Peter Benchley didn’t think anyone could make the film • The magic of movies in the 70s and 80s • The film’s major production problems and why they were serendipitous • Why Spielberg always skips the last day of shooting on every movie he does • What parts were Lee Marvin, Robert Duvall and Sterling Hayden considered for? • The Jaws tourism industry • Bryan Singer’s connection to Jaws • Perfect foreshadowing in the script • A discussion on Mondo Posters • Quint’s iconic entrance into the film • “A Whaaaaat?” • The real life fisherman Quint was based on • Two different genre mash-ups: Horror and Adventure • Why did Mark watch BASIC INSTINCT 2? • How the most famous line in the film was improved • How a little person helped film the real shark footage • The story behind the Indianapolis speech Quint’s manly death • Spielberg’s brashness in thinking he could take this on as such an inexperienced director • The unprecedented marketing campaign • How Jaws started the summer blockbuster tradition • The difference between “So Bad it’s Good” and just plain bad movies • JAWS: The Video Game! As always, we go off on tangents on: • VERTIGO (1958) • DUEL (1971) • THE SUGARLAND EXPRESS (1974) • STAR WARS (1977) • JAWS 2 (1978) • PIRANHA (1978) • 1941 (1979) • CADDYSHACK (1980) • JAWS 3D (1983) • A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (1984) • JAWS THE REVENGE (1987) • LETHAL WEAPON (1987) • BACK TO THE FUTURE PART II (1989) • TERMINATOR 2: JUDGMENT DAY (1991) • BRAVEHEART (1995) • THE MAKING OF ‘JAWS’ (1995) • INDEPENDENCE DAY (1996) • CHASING AMY (1997) • THE LOST WORLD: JURASSIC PARK (1997) • STAR WARS: EPISODE I - THE PHANTOM MENACE (1999) • THE FAST AND FURIOUS Franchise (2001-Present) • JOYRIDE (2001) • THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING (2001) • SHARKNADO (2013) • MAD MAX: FURY ROAD (2015) LINKS: essentialfilmspodcast.com https://www.facebook.com/TheEssentialFilms/ https://mondotees.com/collections/archive/products/jaws-var-poster https://mondotees.com/collections/archive/products/jaws-pcc-var-poster http://www.slashfilm.com/ape-meets-girl-jaws-posters/ TWITTER @EssentialFilms @Adolfo_Acosta @Sportsguy515
August 13, 2016 07:55 PM PDT
On today's podcast adventure, Adolfo Acosta and Mark Espinosa join Ethan Edwards and Martin Pawley on the trail of some Comanche when they discuss John Ford's essential classic THE SEARCHERS. On the show, Adolfo and Mark discuss: • The insane fact that the Academy Awards ignored the film • Patrick Wayne’s terrible acting • How we first experienced THE SEARCHERS • The stunning cinematography • The John Wayne “charachter” • The “true story” that inspired the film • The magnificent opening and closing shots • Ethan and Martha’s secret love • Ford’s influence on the likes of Lucas, Scorsese, Bogdanovich, Tarantino, Milius • Ford’s exploration of racism • Ethan and Scar as mirror images of each other • Is this John Wayne’s greatest performance? • Ethan Edwards: the anti-hero PLUS: Mini Discussions on: • DUMBO (1941) • SONG OF THE SOUTH (1946) • BATMAN: THE KILLING JOKE (2016) • SUICIDE SQUAD (2016) • BATMAN V SUPERMAN: ULTIMATE EDITION (2016) • SALO, OR THE 120 DAYS OF SODOM (1975) • CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST (1980) • THE FLY (1986) • TRUE GRIT (1969, 2010) • THE KING OF KINGS (1961) • STAR WARS (1977) • The book EASY RIDERS, RAGING BULLS by Peter Biskind • Michael Cimino • THE CONQUEROR (1956) • TOUCH OF EVIL (1958) • STAR WARS: EPISODE II - ATTACK OF THE CLONES (2002) • HOW THE WEST WAS WON (1962) • BAMBI (1942) And More!
July 18, 2016 02:22 PM PDT
On today's podcast adventure, Adolfo Acosta and Mark Espinosa are a couple of bums, that were never contenders to begin with, and take a one-way trip to Palookaville in their discussion Elia Kazan's ON THE WATERFRONT. On this show, Adolfo & Mark discuss: • The beautiful Criterion Collection release of the film • Our first introduction to Marlon Brando in his prime • The masterful cinematography by Boris Kaufman • The history of the production • The 1999 Academy Awards where Elia Kazan was snubbed by his peers • Elia Kazan’s ties to Communism, and his controversial testimony before HUAC • The parallels between Kazan and Terry Malloy • Our favorite moments • Karl Malden: The conscience of the film • A dissection at the “I coulda been a contender” scene • The differences in aspect ratios in different versions of the film • Brando and Lee J. Cobb’s powerhouse performances PLUS side discussions of upcoming Criterion Collection releases, DE PALMA, DRESSED TO KILL, A FACE IN THE CROWD and more WEBSITE EssentialFilmsPodcast.com EMAIL EssentialFilmsPodcast@gmail.com FACEBOOK https://www.facebook.com/The-Essential-Films-130585803634489 TWITTER @EssentialFilms @FPMoviePodcast @Adolfo_Acosta @Sportsguy515 Theme song by nemuel reikall
April 15, 2016 03:49 PM PDT
On today's podcast adventure, Adolfo Acosta and Mark Espinosa go into deep analysis on the Alfred Hitchcock classic, VERTIGO. On this show, Adolfo & Mark discuss: • Their favorite Hitchcock films • Hitchcock’s epic run in the 1950s and early 1960s that included canon classics like REAR WINDOW, NORTH BY NORTHWEST, VERTIGO, PSYCHO and THE BIRDS • The origins of VERTIGO •How the opening chase scene is ultimately irrelevant to the plot •VERTIGO's connection to the New York production of SLEEP NO MORE •How Hitchcock leads the viewer into what they think is a supernatural mystery, and then completely switches gears on them, two years before PSYCHO would also manipulate viewer expectations • The themes of overwhelming guilt and dangerous obsessions • Bernard Herrman’s musical score • The "Vertigo" shot • In a Hitchock film, the story is less important than visual impact •The film's COMPLETE snub at the Academy Awards • Phallic symbols and necrophilia? Yes, Hitchcock slipped that into this film • Plus side discussions of CITIZEN KANE, THE SHINING, ROOM 237, JAWS and KNIGHTY KNIGHT BUGS WEBSITE EssentialFilmsPodcast.com EMAIL EssentialFilmsPodcast@gmail.com FACEBOOK https://www.facebook.com/The-Essential-Films-130585803634489 TWITTER @EssentialFilms @FPMoviePodcast @Adolfo_Acosta @Sportsguy515
March 11, 2016 01:03 PM PST
On this episode, Adolfo and Mark discuss the greatest gangster film (and arguably one of the top 5 films ever made... period) of all time: Mario Puzo's THE GODFATHER. On this show: • How were we introduced to the film for the first time? • Who did Paramount want to direct the film before finally settling on Francis Ford Coppola? • Our favorite scenes • The beauty of Gordon "The Prince of Darkness" Willis' cinematography • The behind-the-scenes stories behind some of the more iconic scenes • The Johnny Fontane/Frank Sinatra connection • Which famous actors tested for the parts of Michael and Sonny • The three insane conditions Paramount gave Coppola if he insisted on hiring Marlon Brando • How did the studio want to change and "update" the story from the book's original setting of 1940s New York? • All this and much more. So leave the gun, take the cannoli and join us as we take it to the mattresses. It's an offer you can't refuse.
February 17, 2016 04:28 PM PST
We are back with a new format and a new direction! Join Adolfo Acosta and new co-host Mark Espinosa as we discuss, arguably, the greatest film of all time: CITIZEN KANE! On this show: • How did we first experience the film? • The pros and cons of Laserdisc • How did Orson Welles get into Hollywood, including a discussion on the War of the Worlds Broadcast • Discussions on both THE BATTLE OVER CITIZEN KANE and RKO 281 • If you’re Orson Welles, how do you top CITIZEN KANE? • The similarities between Charles Foster Kane and William Randolph Hearst • The brilliance of the narrative device and how innovative it was • Gregg Toland’s gorgeous cinematography • Rosebud: What does it symbolize and does it matter? • The greatest dirty joke in movie history • The similarities between CITIZEN KANE and THE INTERVIEW. (Yes, we make a connection!) • How did Hearst blackmail the Hollywood studios to almost kill CITIZEN KANE • HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY is the FORREST GUMP of 1941 • What happened to Welles post-KANE? • How did the film, after its initial box office failure, become to be regarded as the greatest film of all time? •What other box office bombs of the modern era could potentially be considered a classic in 40 years? • Orson Welles as Jesus? • And much more!
July 06, 2014 02:09 PM PDT
The first episode of The Essential Films Podcast introduces the concept of our show plus we look at the greatest film of all time: Casablanca!
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