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Slaves of New York - BA037
May 10, 2017 04:00 PM PDT
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We watched this movie so you don't have to: in the 1980s Manhattan art scene, Bernadette Peters is a bohemian babe whose lack of funds keep her in slave-like subservience to a chauvinist brat who just happens to be in possession of his own loft apartment (and a set of very appealing lean twink-muscles). But all she really wants to do is make her own (crazy-as-fuck) hats. [Ed. Note: none of this is important.]

SLAVES OF NEW YORK may not seem like your typical Merchant-Ivory flick but it's actually a costume drama - only this time the costumes feature day-glo colors, shoulder pads, teased-out hair, and orange eye shadow. Based on zeitgeisty stories by scene queen Tama Janowitz, this has been at the top of Brian and Seán's viewing queue for some time. They expected a mess of film'sa movie with "up-to-minute" satire that had dated faster than a plate of sashimi. What they got was a surprising cavalcade of stars -- including Mercedes Ruehl, Stanley Tucci, and Steve Buscemi -- wandering around parties and fashion shows looking for some kind of plot.

You may never watch this film, but we think you'll love this episode. Like the source material, it's aimless, brainless, and tragically hip. Hold the wasabi? We'd love to!

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

The Color Purple - BA036
April 26, 2017 04:03 PM PDT
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Dear God, why did white movie executives take an amazing African-American novel of female empowerment and water it down into asexual Southern-fried syrup? Blame Steven Spielberg, blame the patriarchy, blame everybody (except Oprah).

THE COLOR PURPLE by Alice Walker is an incredible, humane, Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece. The 1985 film, featuring Whoopi Goldberg's acting debut, is a missed opportunity - an object lesson in the simplification of Black history for white audiences, not to mention squeamishness about clitoral stimulation. Brian and Seán get worked up into woke dudgeon as we parse all the ways in which the story has been neutered.

The film didn't push our buttons but it gives us plenty of corn to chew on as we ponder the nature of authentic storytelling. Can we get an Amen up in here!

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

Carrie - BA035
April 12, 2017 03:51 PM PDT
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Everyone remembers their high school prom... unless of course said prom ended in mass death initiated by a telekinetic witch bent on revenge and destroying their entire community. CARRIE (1976) is not only a horror classic but a feast of actresses: Oscar nominees Sissy Spacek and Piper Laurie, podcast perennial Amy Irving, musical diva Betty Buckley and Nancy (not Karen!) Allen.

The boys conquer their fears and enter the girls' locker room: Seán's been a horror queen since his youth, but Brian is wary of the genre, so much so that he'd never read a Stephen King novel... until now. This time around, Seán gets verklempt feeling all the feels for poor Carrie White, while Brian overcomes his adolescent reticence of all matters menstrual to appreciate the 70s masterpiece that King and Brian DePalma have crafted. Plug it up!!

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

Orlando - BA034
March 29, 2017 04:06 PM PDT
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Seán thought he wouldn't like ORLANDO... until he saw it. Shame he didn't do the reading. Brian, of course, did.

Based on Virginia Woolf, it's no frou-frou drawing room drama, but a time-traveling, gender-bending history of sexuality, Foucaudian avant la lettre. Alien androgyne Tilda Swinton is a man who becomes a woman somewhere over the course of his/her 400 years of life.

Lush, funny, philosophical and featuring plenty of wigs, Sally Potter's 1992 masterpiece turns the wacky weirdness of the original text into a piece of filmmaking unlike any other. This is one costume drama where the drama is really in the costumes: doublets, farthingales, corsets, breeches and perruques, all designed by the ever-resourceful Sandy Powell and prompting us to ask whether clothes really do make the (wo)man?

Social constructivists, ahoy! It's time to take down gender essentialism & have a blast doing it.

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

The Handmaid's Tale - BA033
March 15, 2017 05:59 PM PDT
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Wife, Maid or Martha? From the (in)fertile imagination of Margaret Atwood, THE HANDMAID'S TALE imagines a dystopian world in which women's rights have been written off the books, reproduction is under state control, and the patriarchy reigns supreme (in other words... America in 2017!)

Having swooned and shivered over the novel, the Broad Appeal boys turn to the ill-regarded 1990 film. Ever frantic Faye Dunaway longs so badly to be a "Mommie Dearest" that she conscripts Natasha Richardson's ovaries to do the heavy birthing. Meanwhile, Seán longs to wear Colleen Atwood's frumpy-chic costumes while Brian longs to be delivered from the flat dramaturgy.

Join us as we spill our seed all along the road to Gilead!!

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

Yentl - BA032
March 01, 2017 05:51 PM PST
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Papa can you queer me? Brian and Seán take a Guilt Trip together, all the way to the shtetls of Eastern Europe and finally watch what they've been building up to all along. The time has come: Broad Appeal does YENTL.

With a running-time much longer than it takes to read the Isaac Bashevis Singer story upon which it's based, this cross-dressing musical about a young woman who longs to study Talmud was Barbra Strei-ssssand's directorial debut. Is it a masterclass in egomania or all-too rare glimpse of the feminist gaze onscreen? Maybe a bit of both!

Female directors, Jewish customs, Barbra's vocal talent and lengthy disputations about just what makes Mandy Patinkin so G-d damn sexy! If any auteur can command equal amounts of respect and eye rolling, it's (simply) Barbra.

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

2016 Oscar Actress Special Edition - BA031
February 22, 2017 11:55 PM PST
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Five Moms and a First Lady. A computer programmer and a video game producer. An aspiring actress and a syphilitic singer. ....These are your 2016 Oscar-nominated female roles!!

In their now-annual tradition, Seán and Brian will peruse, parse and prognosticate on the only two categories at this year's Academy Awards that actually matter: Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress. (And we'll give some nods to the egregiously overlooked as well.) It may be Oscar Week, but here on Broad Appeal it's Ladies' Day!

Rebecca - BA030
February 15, 2017 04:08 PM PST
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Drowned wives, stately homes, and a skull-faced lesbian housekeeper: REBECCA has it all! Daphne DuMaurier's gothic romance became an Oscar-winning Alfred Hitchcock film. And at the center is.... a heroine so lacking in gumption or personality that she doesn't even have a name!!

Joan Fontaine (one of the most forgettable actress from Hollywood's Golden Age) was probably the perfect choice to play the drippy, dithering second Mrs. DeWinter. Thank goodness Judith Anderson and George Sanders are there to slather on some delicious villainy.

Seán read the book as an impressionable fourteen year-old, prompted by a BBC readers' poll; Brian's encountering this spectral romance for the first time. When they return to Manderley, will they be thrilled or chilled by the cut-glass accents and unrelenting noblesse oblige? Come with us into the West Wing to revisit the scene of the crime......

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

The Piano Teacher - BA029
February 01, 2017 04:05 PM PST
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"Is there really such a thing as the greatest living actress???" Mais oui! And if anyone currently holds the strongest claim to that title it must be Isabelle Huppert. Before her knockout performance in this year's ELLE and her long-overdue Oscar nomination, she was equally transcendent in Michael's Haneke's equally scandalous THE PIANO TEACHER.

Seán and Brian dived deep into the original Viennese novel by Nobel Laureate Elfreide Jelinek -- only to emerge dirty, bruised and stinking of various bodily fluids. How could this darkly cynical vision of a Classical musician with repressed sadomasochistic desires be translated to the screen? Only by Isabelle, it seems. We sit down at the keyboard for equal parts Schubert and schmutz -- but does the right hand know what the left hand is doing????

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

The Portrait of a Lady - BA028
January 18, 2017 05:24 PM PST
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In which Brian & Seán read extended passages from Henry James and marvel at Barbara Hershey's collagen-injected lips.

For the first in our series of female-driven literary adaptations, we tag along with Isabel Archer (Nicole Kidman) as she fends off the advances of several suitors, only to get caught in a web of European marital treachery.

We spent a year reveling in the excruciatingly exquisite prose (and campy dialogue) of THE PORTRAIT OF A LADY. Now we see what happens when visionary director Jane Campion puts this literary classic through her feminist Cuisinart. Masturbatory fantasies, talking vaginal beans and bucketloads of bibelots await!

Clips from the film presented according to fair use policy. Podcast Theme: "Pipeline" by CyberSDF (https://soundcloud.com/cybersdf/tracks).

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