The SportsAlcohol.com Podcast: Paul Thomas Anderson

Though we briefly discussed the new Paul Thomas Anderson picture Phantom Thread on our podcast about the best movies of 2017, some of our core group of movie fans had not yet seen it. Paul Thomas Anderson always provides plenty to talk about, so after Marisa, Jesse, Sara, Nathaniel, and Jon had all seen the latest from PTA, we got together to talk about all of his movies, in reverse chronological order (and including at least one HAIM video). Whose favorite is Boogie Nights? Who is transfixed by The Master? Does Punch-Drunk Love hold up? And what does Phantom Thread have to do with old-timey comic strips? All this and more is covered on our Paul Thomas Anderson career view.

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The SportsAlcohol.com Podcast: Oscar Predictions 2018

Do you like winning your office Oscar pool? Well, look no further, unless you have a lot of money riding on it, in which case we may not be able to help you! The SportsAlcohol.com crew of Marisa, Sara, Nathaniel, Jesse, and Jon may not have all the answers in all the categories, but we sure know how to discuss the hell out of the big six for the 2018 Oscars, chatting about our best guesses as well as our personal favorites or anti-favorites. Who’s delighted by Denzel’s surprise nomination? Who’s rooting for Willem Dafoe? Who’s surprised to love Meryl Streep’s obligatory nom? Who loves Lady Bird? (Well, to that last one: All of us.) Listen and then somehow win your Oscar pool for reasons unrelated!

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The SportsAlcohol.com MiniPodcast: The Secret of My Success and Mars Attacks!

Ben and Jesse are back at it again. After our first business/’90s sci-fi double feature of Pretty Woman and Starship Troopers and our follow-up pairing Other People’s Money and Dark City, we got together to watch 1987’s The Secret of My Success (previously unseen by Jesse) and 1996’s Mars Attacks! (previously unseen by Ben), a business/sci-fi double feature heavily featuring Michael J. Fox. We pulled in Mars Attacks! number one fan and expert Nathaniel, and had a nice little chat about gruesome demises, nepotism, particularly camera-friendly ways of turning around, and other hallmarks of business/sci-fi/Fox cinema.

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The SportsAlcohol.com Podcast: SNL Midseason Check-In 2018

The SportsAlcohol.com crew includes a lot of regular Saturday Night Live viewers, so we’ve made it an annual tradition to get together and check in with the show at various points to see how it’s doing. We can do this because a famous space cowboy is hosting, or a famous piece of total garbage is hosting, or because that famous piece of garbage is president now and must be repeatedly addressed by the show, or, this year, because WE LOVE YOU NATALIE. So Marisa, Nathaniel, Michael, and Jesse stayed up even later than usual after the recent Natalie Portman-hosted episode of SNL to podcast about this most recent episode (the show’s last for about a month), the recent run of episodes including hosting gigs by Will Ferrell, Jessica Chastain, and Sam Rockwell, and how Season 43 has been going so far: in politics, in cast members, in sketches that only a handful of people love. If you’re a fan of the show, you’ll probably enjoy hearing us yak about what we love and hate. NOW SAY SOMETHING NICE ABOUT JAR JAR BINKS.

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The SportsAlcohol.com Podcast: The Best Movies of 2017

Hopefully you’ve gone through our list of the 20 best movies of 2017, and maybe if you did, you had some questions, such as: Where was this or that movie? Did everyone like every movie on this list a near-equal amount? Is there a way I could listen to Marisa, Sara, Nathaniel, and Jesse talk about the movies of 2017 for a feature-length amount of time? Luckily, we have a podcast for that.

Nathaniel defends The Shape of Water! Sara expresses frustration with Dunkirk! Jesse compares Call Me By Your Name to Brawl in Cell Block 99! Marisa talks about watching The Florida Project with a stranger! It’s all here.

I should note that because some of these movies have been covered extensively on other podcasts, we tried to steer conversations away from some of them. Here’s a quick list of supplemental podcasts you may have missed that also feature movies from our best movies of 2017 list (you know, in case two hours isn’t enough):

T2: Trainspotting is featured on our Danny Boyle episode.
Logan Lucky is featured on our Steven Soderbergh episode.
We talk about A Ghost Story, The Beguiled and Columbus on our summer indies ’17 episode.
We talk about Lady Bird and The Meyerowitz Stories on our Baumbach/Gerwig episode.
And yes, for more Star Wars talk, there’s always an episode for that.

Anyway, check it totally out:

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The Top 20 Best Movies of 2017

As Marisa will mention in an upcoming podcast, last year felt like it was about seventeen goddamn years long, but that doesn’t mean we shied away from the challenge of combing through the approximately one million 2017 releases to determine which, of this year’s many fine offerings (finer than what the year had to offer in general, for sure) constituted the 20 best movies of the year. Regular SportsAlcohol.com Film Gang Marisa, Sara, Nathaniel, and Jesse each submitted individual Top 20 lists which were aggregated into a single Top 20 which featured relatively few movies with four-for-four list support (about 25%, I believe) but plenty of movies that got two or three of us way on board (unlike past years, no single-vote wonders made the list). Now that the mechanics are out of the way, let’s get to the movies themselves. A podcast, as always, will follow.

The 20 Best Movies of 2017

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The SportsAlcohol.com Podcast: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Do you like Star Wars? Do you like talking about Star Wars? Do you like listening to nerds talk about Star Wars? Did you like Star Wars: The Last Jedi? Did you hate Star Wars: The Last Jedi? Did you find yourself reinvigorated and more ready to talk Star Wars than ever before after watching Star Wars: The Last Jedi? Do you want to know what some avowed prequel-likers thought about Star Wars: The Last Jedi? Do you have opinions about Canto Bight? Do you have opinions about Brick? Do you have opinions about BB-8 driving a [redacted]? What about Luke Skywalker? Do you think you’re Luke Skywalker? Do you think you’re Han Solo? Do you think you’re Finn or Rey? Are you interested in what Rob and Jesse and Marisa and Sabrina thought about Star Wars: The Last Jedi even though it came out weeks ago because you’re still thinking about it yourself?

Here is a podcast about Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

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The SportsAlcohol.com Podcast: Best TV of 2017

Hey, you guys watch TV, right? So do your pals at SportsAlcohol.com, so Marisa, Sara, Nathaniel, and Jesse got together for an end-of-year TV podcast where we discuss our recent Top 12 list and go beyond it, talking about shows that didn’t make the cut, and sometimes offering different opinions than those offered in our blurbs. Curious what we thought about recent episodes of Riverdale or what we loved/hated about the second season of Master of None or who loved Twin Peaks the most? This is the TV podcast for you.

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The Top 12 Best TV Shows of 2017

It’s been a rough year, but there’s always television. So much television! It’s really a wonder that even a small group of SportsAlcohol.com editors and contributors — your usual pals Nathaniel, Marisa, Jesse, and Sara, plus novelist Maggie Lehrman and playwright/actual TV professional Jon Kern — was able to reach any kind of consensus over what we liked best. And in some ways, we didn’t; I’m not sure if there’s a single show mentioned on this list that all six of us have seen in full. (Maybe number three.) But it’s an eclectic and often electrifying group of shows we really love. In other words, a twelve-part miracle. Let’s get to miracle-in’ then!
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Halt and Catch Fire Finale Reaction, “Search” and “Ten of Swords”: I Have an Idea

Halt and Catch Fire is an interesting way to take the temperature of our current television climate. It is a very, very good show, with all of the hallmarks of a prestige cable drama, and yet it’s nobody’s favorite. Still, we’ve been covering Halt and Catch Fire since the first season, and Marisa has always found something about it that spoke to her personally, so she decided to write about the individual episodes as it heads into its final stretch. Read her reaction to the previous episode, “Goodwill?” here

Dear Haley,

Endings are hard. I know it seems like everyone is leaving.

Joe left, with nothing but his own “Dear Haley” letter to say goodbye. But then again, was Joe ever really, fully anywhere? Does he even have an essential self, or is he like a liquid that changes his shape to fit into his surroundings?

Joanie left. And sure, it feels like it was really easy for her to go. She was so confident, arguing with your mom every step of the way about how this is certainly, definitely the right decision for her. But maybe you should take a moment and think about how hard she works at making it look effortless. Maybe, if you stare hard enough, it’ll look like you’re the one who’s more sure of herself.

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