The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva, Chad Riley and Spencer Williams, host their annual Oscars after party with a recap of this year’s major wins, upsets, inspiring moments and awkward wardrobe selections. Recap the 90th annual Academy Awards and relive the triumph of winners such as Guillermo del Toro, Frances McDormand, Gary Oldman, Jordan Peele and others representing some of the previous year’s most critically acclaimed movies. From The Shape of Water (2017) to Coco (2017), and everything in between, the night was full of ups and downs...and no mislabeled envelopes.
A number of prominent social themes and political references were prominent during the 2018 ceremony as well, with both presenters and winners speaking openly about current events and utilizing their platform to promote their stance on various causes.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva, Chad Riley and Spencer Williams, keep things in their hometown with this week’s review of Greta Gerwig’s Lady Bird (2017). Set in Sacramento, the film chronicles a high school senior’s turbulent relationship with family and friends as she prepares to end her final year in private school and move on to a college of her own choosing. Filmed almost entirely in Sacramento, Lady Bird has received numerous critical and popular accolades since it first debuted on the film festival circuit in 2017.
The film stars Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Metcalf, Timothee Chalamet, Tracy Letts and more. As of the recording of this episode, Lady Bird is up for five Academy Awards on March 4th.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva, Chad Riley and Spencer Williams, screw up time and space with this week’s review of The Cloverfield Paradox (2018). The surprise third installment of JJ Abrams’ Cloverfield-verse, which dropped on Super Bowl Sunday on Netflix, is a cautionary tale that somewhat ties together the previous films in the series, Cloverfield (2008) and 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016). Even against a backdrop that includes a global energy crisis and tinkering with the multiverse with an out-of-this-world particle accelerator, the film’s strength lies in its impressive cast and diverse characters.
The Cloverfield Paradox stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Daniel Brühl, Zhang Ziyi, David Oyelowo, Elizabeth Debicki and more.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva, Chad Riley and Spencer Williams The Filmlosophers travel to the mythical African nation of Wakanda in this week’s review of Black Panther (2018). New from Marvel Studios, the film is directed by Ryan Coogler and unites an expansive cast of performers to tell the story of the rise of Prince T’Challa, played by Chadwick Boseman, to power as the warrior-priest-king known as the Black Panther. First seen on screen in Captain America: Civil War (2016), Black Panther is one of the newest superheroes to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe pantheon. He is also one of its most relatable heroes, and this new solo film enlarges the audience’s view of his homeland, family and philosophy.
The film also stars Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Angela Bassett, Martin Freeman, Danai Gurira, Daniel Kaluuya, Sterling K. Brown, Forest Whitaker, Andy Serkis, Letitia Wright and Winston Duke. The films releases in North America on February 16th.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva, Chad Riley and Spencer Williams, prep for next week’s Black Panther (2018) review with a tour of director Ryan Coogler’s filmography including Fruitvale Station (2013) and Creed (2015). How has Coogler’s presence behind the lens shaped those stories, and what can we expect from the superhero film on the horizon? Moreover, in a culture that is still reeling from racially motivated tensions and conflict, we discuss the value of sharing stories that champion the influence and impact of black performers and creators on an international stage.
In movie news, we also profile this weekend’s new releases which include Clint Eastwood’s The 15:17 to Paris (2018), franchise closer Fifty Shades Freed (2018) and updated children’s classic Peter Rabbit (2018) starring James Corden.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva, Chad Riley and Spencer Williams blaze a new trail through the dystopic future with this week’s review of The Maze Runner: The Death Cure (2018). Directed by Wes Ball, the film brings the three-part series to a close with explosive special effects, heavy-handed exposition and a multitude of questionable plot twists that diverge from the source material in James Dashner’s popular young adult book series. The film, which faced production delays after a stunt involving lead actor Dylan O’Brien went wrong, clocks in at a massive two hours and twenty minutes.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva, Chad Riley and Spencer Williams examine the previously classified records of the so-called “horse soldiers” who fought alongside local militias against the Taliban during the months following September 11th, 2001, with this week’s review of 12 Strong (2018). Directed by Nicolai Fuglsig, the film stars Chris Hemsworth, Michael Shannon, Michael Peña, Navid Negahban, William Fichtner, Rob Riggle and many others.
As depicted in the film, the Green Berets selected for this mission were dropped deep behind enemy lines near strategic, Taliban-controlled villages and tasked with calling in air strikes to support the local militias’ efforts to destabilize Al Qaeda’s control over a highly contested region, culminating in the hoped-for liberation of Mazar-i-Sharif, the fourth-largest city in Afghanistan. The mission, which many expected to take months or even years, needed to be completed within three to six weeks.
Be sure to check out Maze Runner: The Death Cure (2018), which debuts this weekend! Also making its wide release debut are the award-buzzing films I, Tonya (2017), Phantom Thread (2017), and Call Me By Your Name (2017).
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva, Chad Riley and Spencer Williams wax philosophical about the freedom of the press with this week’s review of The Post (2017). Directed by Steven Spielberg, the film stars Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Bob Odenkirk, Matthew Rhys, Sarah Paulson, Alison Brie and others. The film chronicles the historic decision by The Washington Post’s first female publisher, Katharine Graham, to proceed with coverage of the classified Pentagon Papers during the Nixon administration. The choice landed Graham and the paper in the Supreme Court alongside The New York Times, and the film provides a compelling portrayal of the difficulties Graham faced as a woman in a male-dominated industry.
On the docket for this weekend in theaters is Paddington 2, The Commuter, starring Liam Neeson, and Proud Mary, starring the astounding Taraji P. Henson.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, welcome Spencer Williams as the official third co-host with a review of one of the year’s best reviewed films, Get Out (2017). Directed by Jordan Peele, the film stars Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, Bradley Whitford, Catherine Keener, LilRel Howery in a compelling examination of race-based anxieties and tensions that works as both a taut psychological thriller and an eye-opening allegory for some of society’s most persistent and pervasive issues.
On the docket for this weekend in theaters is Insidious: The Last Key (2018), the fourth installment in the horror franchise.
The Filmlosophers recap the year that was with a full review of 2017 films - what worked, what didn’t, who stood out and which studios dropped the ball. Alongside returning guest Spencer Williams, we give our picks for best and worst performances, biggest surprise and disappointment, and more categories. Listen in and see if you agree!