Do you ever stop and look at a New Yorker cartoon or a sardonic comic book and wonder, “Huh! I wonder what sort of deviant mind would create this”? Lucky for you, dear listener, there are at least three movies about such people–one fiction, two biopics. This week, with the release of Gus Van Sant’s “Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far On Foot” (about the late John Callahan), Chance and Noah look at movies about cynical cartoonists: Harvey Pekar in “American Splendor” and fictional writing duo Holden McNeil and Banky Edwards in “Chasing Amy.”
These films run the gamut from hilarious and subversive to tone-deaf and problematic, and the guys break down all the weird performances (see: Jonah Hill as a flamboyant HIV patient; Joey Lauren Adams as a male-fantasy lesbian), the political incorrectness (see: all of Harvey Pekar’s comics) and what these kinds of films and filmmakers mean in a post-Weinstein world.
And big news! We got Gus Van Sant himself on for an interview–talking John Callahan, Joaquin Phoenix and the late Robin Williams. So stop doodling and give a listen!
(Correction: At one point in this episode, Chance refers to¬†My Own Private Idaho¬†coming out “before Sundance,” which is not true because Sundance started in 1978. But what he means is before the full industrialization of that festival. He may be wrong about that too; Chance is a fool.)
Be Reel is a movie reviewing & reappraising podcast hosted by Chance Solem-Pfeifer and Noah Ballard.
Each time out, they select three movies based around a genre: as conventional as "Baseball Movies" and as specific as "Movies featuring Disturbed Hosts on Surrealist TV Shows." Then, they rate the movies, weighing both technical quality and entertainment.
Noah and Chance are old friends who mostly respect each other's opinions. Even though Chance is a fool and a traitor.