Ep. 113: Predator

Nate and Ryan get in the summer blockbuster mood by watching Predator (1987) for the first time. As part of our Gap Year series, we’re catching up on this action classic over 35 years later. As often happens, Predator is now looked at quite differently from when it was first released. Nate and Ryan share their first impressions and whether or not another over-the-top action movie is an appropriate means of critiquing over-the-top action movies. Get to the choppa for a ride full of explosions, biceps, and foreign policy that oversteps through overuse of military! As always, let us know your thoughts on this movie!



Predator Turns 35: A Look Back at Sci-Fi’s Most Subversive Creature Feature by Cole Burgett (Christ and Pop Culture)

Predator: Why is it So Good? – Rossatron on YouTube

Predator: The Smartest Genre Mash-Up Ever? Probably!Patrick (H) Willems on YouTube

Every Predator Movie is Worth Watching by Jesse Hassenger (Polygon)



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Ep 70: Children of Men

Nate and Ryan invite back special guest Evan Mather to talk about Alfonso Cuaron’s 2006 Children of Men.  Though not especially successful on its release, Children of Men has received new attention as critics and fans can’t help but notice that Cuaron seemed to know exactly what issues the world would be facing over the next 20 years (with the exception of total infertility).  Nate, Ryan, and Evan discuss what, if anything, Children of Men suggests we do to survive the coming bleakness.  Maybe we just won’t think about it.

Tell us about your experience with Children of Men. Alfonso Cuaron: Great director, or the greatest director? Let us know!


Watch the Children of Men DVD extra The Possibility of Hope. Credits: In this episode the quote pulled from the documentary features Slavoj Zizek and James Lovelock.

Ep. 55: Starship Troopers

Nate and Ryan continue their unofficial tour through 1997 by watching director Paul Verhoeven’s divisive sci-fi cult classic, Starship Troopers.  Joined by guest (and Starship Troopers fan) Dan Wartsbaugh, Nate and Ryan try to find out if this is a scathing, brilliant satire, skewering the tropes of violence-worshiping blockbuster action flicks, or a dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, silly violence-worshiping blockbuster action flick.  The movie’s stock has certainly risen in the 20 years since its release, as many critics have revisited the movie and praise Verhoeven’s incisive anti-war spin on Robert Heinlein’s pro-military novel.

But are claims of a satiric vision enough?  What are your thoughts on Starship Troopers?  Has your mind changed over the years?  How much schlock can be forgiven in the name of satire?  Is it ever not cool to watch alien bug explosions?  Let us know!

Ep. 52: Close Encounters of the Third Kind

Nate and Ryan rewatch Close Encounters of the Third Kind, the other sci-fi classic released 40 years ago.  Directed by Steven Spielberg, Close Encounters solidified Spielberg’s aesthetic and helped bring hard(ish) sci-fi into the mainstream.  With all the hallmarks of great Spielberg movies wrapped up nicely in one movie, Nate and Ryan explore what makes Close Encounters of the Third Kind an unusually under-seen classic, and what we all love about Spielberg.

Was Close Encounters of the Third Kind a part of your childhood?  Where does it rank among Spielberg’s movies for you?  How has Close Encounters aged?  Let us know!