Like every Christmas, this is the time of year we post our recurring Jesus in movies episode, with Monty Python's The Life of Brian (1979), Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ (2004), and Martin Scorcese's The Last Temptation of Christ (1988). Enjoy!

December 6, 2021

The Bosnian War on Film

The Bosnian war of 1992-1995 was the most brutal war in Europe since WWII. The conflict had three parties vying for control of a complex patchwork of areas and the populations within them, culminating in genocide. In this episode, Rutger explores how this war was depicted on film: in The Peacemaker (1997), Behind Enemy Lines (2001) and No Man's Land (2001).

November 29, 2021

Blues Music on Film

American blues music has created the genres that have been dominating the music world for the past 70 years. Today we'll go on a trip that covers the evolution of that music, from its roots (Brother Where Art Thou?, 2001), to its soul (Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, 2020), its theft (Cadillac Records, 2008), its rise (Ray, 2004) and its acceptance into the mainstream (The Blues Brothers, 1980). Together with Gil are two longtime members of the show, musician Bridget Hall and avid blues fan Shay Golan.

The Last Duel (2021, now in theatres) more or less accurately depicts a trial by combat over a rape accusation in France in the year 1386. In this episode, Mallory and Rutger discuss the film and the historical context from the perspective of the three protagonists.

November 8, 2021

Vikings on Film

The Vikings are the last hurrah of paganism in Europe. In the English perspective, the Viking age consists of the period between their first raid on English shores in 793 and concludes with the other battle of 1066, not the one of Hastings, but of Stamford Bridge. Yet this is only one of several possible bookends. The Christianisation of the Danish kings is sometimes seen as another. Be that as it may, the Viking age is curious because they came, they saw, they conquered... and then they just kinda stopped coming, because both they and their enemies had evolved into something else. But what was Vikingness like at peak performance? What made them tick? And why did that end? That's today's episode.

The new Dune by Dennis Villeneuve, starring Timothée Chalamet, is a sci-fi sensation that charts a new course for the CGI-heavy genre.

October 25, 2021

Beowulf on Film

Beowulf is an epic poem from 6th c. southern Scandinavia, recorded in Anglo-Saxon a few centuries later. The poem recalls a time when brutal warriors in small kingdoms dominated the North Sea coasts as the transition from paganism to Christianity was unfolding. In this episode, Gil and Rutger review three films based on the plot of the poem: Beowulf (2007), Beowulf & Grendel (2005), and Outlander (2008).

October 18, 2021

Techno on Film

Electronic dance music took Europe by storm in the years following 1989. The music became the soundtrack across the unifying continent for the post-Cold War euphoria of the decade when the world went online. In this episode, Rutger reviews five films that depict events from the "second Summer of Love" in Manchester in the late eighties to the early noughties in Berlin: 24 Hour Party People (2002), Trainspotting (1996), Wasted (1996), It's All Gone Pete Tong (2004) and Berlin Calling (2008). For this episode, there exists a 45-minute mix of some of the songs featured in the films and discussed in the review. This can be found at https://www.ourpodacademy.com/post/techno-on-film

It is somewhat perplexing how the basic premise of so many different films across genres have one recurring theme when it comes to men wanting to get back with their exes: male performance, female castration, male domination, female submission. Our films for this episode are: Outbreak (1994), Die Hard (1988), 2012 (2009), War of the Worlds (2005), Crazy Stupid Love (2011), Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008) and The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004).

The story of the flood and Noah's ark has been a staple of human storytelling for 2500 years, with the latest version being the avant-garde Darren Aronofsky 2014 Noah film, with its distinct gravitas, starring Russel Crowe, Jennifer Connely, Emma Watson, Ron Winstone, and Anthony Hopkins. How is this 21st-century version of this tale different and what does it tell us about the evolution of storytelling? What makes this biblical adventure still relevant today? A collaboration with Garry Stevens from History in the Bible Podcast https://www.historyinthebible.com/

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