Finally…a new episode! It’s a Christmas miracle! Dave, Mike, and Ivan re-visit the 1984 comedy-horror film, Gremlins, directed by Joe Dante and written by Chris Columbus. The puppet effects are memorable, but does the film itself hold up? Or, is it simply another victim of “nostalgia goggles”? Download the episode to find out (just don’t eat aything after midnight).


A remake of a 1951 film (with a prequel that came out in 2011), John Carpenter’s 1982 version of The Thing is considered by many to be a horror classic, combining practical make-up, horror, and sci-fi elements into a satisfying genre package. But, although history looks upon the film kindly, original reviews found the film “excessive” and over-the-top. So, looking back 35 years since it’s initial release, how does the film hold up?


Writer/director Christopher Nolan is one of the most successful filmmakers currently working today. From The Dark Knight Trilogy to big budget epics like Interstellar and Dunkirk, his films have grossed billions. But, back in the late 90s, he was just a scrappy indie filmmaker trying to make a name for himself. We revisit Nolan’s second feature film—Memento, a psychological thriller about a man who is attempting to solve the murder of his wife despite the fact that he suffers from short-term memory loss. The film’s “reverse” structure stunned audiences upon its release and had a huge impact on the indie film scene in the aughts. But, 17 years later now that we know the answers to its puzzles, is the film still as engaging? Has the novelty of the gimmick worn off? Or, is it a film that, unlike its protagonist, we’ll be destined to remember for a long time?


In the second iteration of “Re-viewed Film School” Ivan brings back filmmaker and cinephile Shahir Daud to talk about David Gordon Green’s George Washington, which—with its depiction of a lazy summer hanging out with impoverished kids in the rural south—had a huge impact on me personally at the turn of the millennium.  The goal of this “film school” series is simple: revisit classic movies that often comprise a cinematic education and determine if they work beyond a purely intellectual capacity. In that regard, does George Washington still feel as profound 17 years later? What makes a movie pretentious? When does something transcend into art? Once again, Shahir provides a wide breadth of knowledge about the indie film scene and the prototypical “Film School” movie.

If you have movie suggestions for future “film school” episodes, email us at


Originally released in 1988, My Neighbor Totoro is often considered to be the seminal film from acclaimed writer/director Hayao Miyazaki and his animation team at Studio Ghibli. It’s a film that changed the face of anime and had a profound cultural impact, both in its native Japan and across the world. But, how does it fare when viewed from the lens of three anime-ignorant film enthusiasts? Does the style prove distancing? Or, did we fall for Totoro’s simple charms?

In the wake of his recent sci-fi epic (and flop), Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, we turn to French director Luc Besson’s previous big budget sci-fi epic (and flop), The Fifth Element. Yes, when it was first released in 1997, the Fifth Element polarized critics and did meager box office numbers in the US. But, it has since gone on to be revered amongst the sci-fi community, and, with the help of international receipts, eventually became a financial success. But, where do Dave, Ivan, and Mike stand on Besson’s goofy, colorful version of the future? Worthy of cult status? Or, a loud, annoying, tonal misfire?


Often considered by many to be the quintessential “coming-of-age” film, Stand By Me is one of the rare movies about children that’s actually made for adults, balancing both youthful comedy and heavier dramatic themes like death, grief, and class status. But, considering our nostalgia-obsessed culture and the myriad of imitators that have popped up in its wake, does Stand By Me‘s sentimental warmth still resonate as strongly today, 31 years later? On this warm summer evening, Mike, Ivan, and Dave embark down the train tracks to find out!


Often considered to be one of the most important American political movies ever made, All the President’s Men is a film that truly stands the test of time. Now, in the wake of current political scandal in the United States, it’s also perhaps never been more prescient. Dave, Ivan, and Mike re-visit the 1976 classic to see how viewing it in today’s tumultuous landscape reflects current events, and how the film artistically holds up as a whole.