Berkreviews.com Movie Club – Mint in Box, May 2019

May 2019 brings in a long-needed theme; Mint in Box. In other words, Corey (@coreyrstarr) and Jonathan (@berkreviews) decided to watch movies that they owned but had never seen before. In fact, it’s this very issue that started the two to begin this podcast all those years ago. They own a bunch of movies, and while they’ve seen many of them. There are plenty of movies that were purchased with the intent to watch that still sit unopened.

As far as the podcast goes, each episode features an in-depth review of the movie for the week. They begin with a spoiler-free review before diving in completely after the needed spoiler warning. However, before getting into the review of the week, Jonathan and Corey discuss what other movies they’ve seen since the last episode as well as anything else they feel like discussing. To help them decide which of the many films to watch each month they started creating themes for them all.

Week 1 – Network (1976)

Jonathan got to pick the first movie and he’d been eyeballing Network (1976) for a long time. Directed by Sidney Lumet and starring Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Peter Finch, and Robert Duvall, neither Jonathan nor Corey knew what they were getting into. While the IMDb.com plot summary reads, “A television network cynically exploits a deranged former anchor’s ravings and revelations about the news media for its own profit,” the satire in the film is far more impactful.

Week 2 – Repo Man (1984)

Week 2 Corey selected the 1984 Sci-fi, Crime, Comedy Repo Man. Jonathan added it to his collection recently after finding it at a flea market. The film stars Harry Dean Stanton, Emilio Estevez, and Tracey Walter and was written and directed by Alex Cox. The plot summary is “Young punk Otto becomes a repo man after helping to steal a car, and stumbles into a world of wackiness as a result.”

Week 3 – The French Connection (1971)

Jonathan has been working through some of his major gaps, and The French Connection (1971) was purchased a while ago with that intention. This iconic film directed by William Friedkin stars Gene Hackman, Roy Scheider, and Fernando Rey. The movie features some iconic chases and is about “A pair of NYC cops in the Narcotics Bureau stumble onto a drug smuggling job with a French connection.”

Week 4 – Dead Man (1995)

Corey and Jonathan picked up Dead Man (1995) during the various Criterion Collection sales. For Jonathan, this continues his exploration of director Jim Jarmusch. The movie stars Johnny Depp, Gary Farmer, and the ever interesting Crispin Glover. IMDb.com reads “On the run after murdering a man, accountant William Blake encounters a strange North American man named Nobody who prepares him for his journey into the spiritual world.”

Week 5 – Sunset Boulevard (1950)

The theme ends with Jonathan’s third choice of Sunset Boulevard (1950). He’s been a fan of Billy Wilder and this is a big film of his that is still sitting on the gap list. The movie stars William Holden, Gloria Swanson, and Erich von Stroheim. The movie is about “A screenwriter develops a dangerous relationship with a faded film star determined to make a triumphant return.”

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