Ep 45: Archive 81 Show Transcript

https://anchor.fm/kris-chaney/episodes/Ep-45-Archive-81-R-2022–TV-Series-e1dcatp

Welcome to REEL Film Reviewed the show that delivers short spoiler free reviews of films, TV shows, and limited series, followed by a deep dive discussion. Brought to you by your host,Kris Chaney, here is REEL Film Reviewed.

Welcome back everyone. This episode, REEL Film Reviewed another Netflix weekend binge-worthy limited series Archive 81. Let’s get into the spoiler free review. An Archivist hired, to restore a collection of tapes, finds himself, reconstructing the work of a filmmaker and her investigation into a dangerous cult.

I don’t know how dangerous it was, but okay. The story was a good mix of research and discovery. During the present as Dan was restoring the tapes and following melody, who is the filmmaker who making a documentary about a building and its residents. There is one story being told yet we’re viewing it from at least two perspectives, Melody, as she’s recording the tapes and interviewing the residents and kind of piecing things together and Dan who is restoring and then watching the tapes to ensure that they’re restored correctly of course. And he’s kind of learning the story as Melody is discovering it.

Of course, there’s more to the story than that. There appears to be something going on in the building. And as we find out more, more is revealed and we then have the question if there was really something going on or if it was insanity or cabin fever, or if that was even a factor.

I don’t think that there was enough there to say that it was just cabin fever or insanity. So there wasn’t any points during the series that. Under that impression, but really there was more development and effort put into telling us the main story about the building, which is called the Visser. This was a relatively less known cast.

There are a few, if any veterans in the film, the newcomers in the film that don’t stand out enough to make this a big break for. Mamaudou Aithe I’m not a fan of his yet. I first saw him in another Netflix project Uncorked, which also had Matt McGorry in it. He was typecasted well for this because he doesn’t look like a hero.

He’s not overly ripped or good looking he’s. I mean, he’s not bad looking. He’s just not that stud. And he is kind of a, kind of good at being. Quiet and average, he was all right. In this film, I felt his acting was maybe a beam. He was just convincing enough to be believed in this role yet not interesting enough to steal the show.

Dina Shihabi channeling the likes of Rachel Leigh Cook. Dina was perfect as the curious and gorgeous documentary film. Challenging authority and acting on her passions throughout the film. She does well at achieving that inquisitive reporter type. There was one thing that kind of stuck out to me, but I will elaborate more on that in the post viewing discussion, because I think it has to do with the ending of this year.

Ariana Neal and Matt McGorry both were the supporting characters, Ariana as Jess for Melody and Matt as Mark for Dan, they were the character supports, but also had vital roles. I will dive deeper into those roles in the post viewing discussion.

REEL-View is seven out of 10 stars. The series was fairly short, however, it felt much longer than it was with just eight episodes. It tells us many stories as it unfolds the main one and delivers some captivating plot twists that we can actually see coming, but don’t because we’re distracted by what’s going on in the present. I enjoyed the twist of the series because there were things that we could have caught onto, which is different in series where the creators are hiding details from the audience.

In this story, all the pieces were there and presenting themselves subtly. The ending, I believe will give everyone a bit of controversy the way they chose to end. It honestly made a bigger impact for the story, but it landed kind of weird. And I think it may have angered some people I’m still on the fence about it because there was something that happened, which confused the end for me, a little.

Archive 81 was released in 2022. It was created by Rebecca Sonnenshine, starring Mamoudou Aithe Dina Shihabi,, Evan Jonigkeit, Julia Chan, Arianna, Neal, Matt McGorry, and Martin Donovan. It is rated TV-MA and has eight episodes that run about one hour long each episode. It can be viewed on Netflix.

Spoiler Alert Warning

Alright here is these spoiler alert, warning, those new to REEL Film Reviewed, after this point, I will discuss this review further potentially and likely revealing spoilers. Thank you for listening to the spoiler free review. I’ll be back after a word about my sponsors.

Welcome back, everyone. Let’s dive into the REEL-View- hollywood comparison. The REEL-View was seven out of 10 stars. Metascore is not provided for series, but we do have theRotten Tomatoes score. Popular opinion was 7.6 out of 10 stars. Rotten Tomatoes gave it an 88%. All right, let’s break this film down. I’ve been steadily changing up this section because I used to regurgitate the film, but I would rather do highlights of the main pieces rather than doing a whole regurgitation of.

Okay, let’s run it back. Dan is a young archivist odd for this time period, but we’ll go with it. He’s single now broken up with his girlfriend and had a mental breakdown. After that his family all died in a fire when he was eight, and now he lives this existence where very fewer close to him. Save his good friend, Mark.

Melody, much the same. She has little to no family. Her mother gave her up when she was a baby. And she is vocal in the film about being raised by the clergy of the Catholic church that she was left in. We don’t see her after 1994, except for obviously the very end of the film. So you’ve got two main characters, one that’s in 94, one that’s in today’s timeframe. What I’m guessing.

The Visser, a common site where two buildings burned to the ground, which Melody moves into in 1994. So when Melody moves in, in 1994, there had already been a building there once that had burned down, then they built the Visser. And then now she was living in it in 1994. When Dan is reviewing the tapes, both buildings have burned down.

She begins documenting the residents and activities that she witnesses there and eventually gets trapped in the other world that they’re trying to kind of tap into. And she’s kind of this big whole thing. We’ll get into that a little bit in just a second. The ending Dan and mark team up to try and rescue Melody by returning to the compound where he was restoring the tapes and tries to get Davenport on board.

When he learns that Davenport was already aware of the cult and what they were actually trying to do. It was unclear what he was actually trying to do, but we assume that he was trying to raise the demon rather than trying to get sucked into the other world. He mentioned the other world, but it’s not really elaborated on.

I think there was just a lot left to assumption. I think as far as it goes to the explanations of that, I think we’re kind of just meant to know what Dan is trying to do and that Melody is actually trying to reach out to him and it’s not just something that he’s making up and there’s something that he has to actually do in order to get her back.

The series kind of takes us along that path and then puts it into perspective that that’s the mission that he’s got to try to. We get to another twist in the story. The groundskeeper is actually Melody’s long lost mother who wants to free her just as much as Dan does. That was actually my favorite part because there was a lot of give and take in this.

There was uncertainty and then they gave us the answer and an uncertainty and, and they gave us the answer. And so we kind of. We’re together. It wasn’t really anything we were confused about as we were going on. We were kind of just waiting for the story to unfold. I liked that, that we weren’t so confused and back and forth kind of like how I felt during the Eternals, but we won’t go there. I’ll review that after this.

Dan goes into the other world succeeds in finding melody to bring her back and then Samuel appears and pulls melody through a door. And the door is actually the correct pathway to getting out yet. Sam. Does not make it out. And neither does Dan. I understand why Dan doesn’t make it out because Dan is trying to grab Melody to save her from that door because that door was open and he’s kind of thinking like, Hmm. I don’t know which one’s the right one. So they’re kind of pausing for a second. When Melody starts to walk towards that open door and then Samuel appears and runs through it and grabs her. And then when we go back to the real world, I guess what we’re assuming is the real world. Samuel’s not there. It’s just Mark and her mother and Melody, which is odd because I didn’t understand why Samuel wasn’t there. Then you’ve got Dan who didn’t go through the door and he wasn’t even trying to, he was trying to save Melody because he thought that that was the wrong pathway. Well, he gets stuck in what I’m calling limbo because it kind of gave me some Inception vibes.

And I knew he was stuck. There wasn’t anything, obviously he wasn’t there. I thought it was kind of funny that Mark was like, “Dan!”, it didn’t really make it cheesy for the series because you kind of felt like that’s really what would happen in real life. Somebody would be kind of irrational and thinking that just by simply yelling his name, he would come back.

That was something that it was actually realistic that I enjoyed. All right. Breaking down the REEL-View. We’re going to start with the ending, because what I was confused about was I didn’t understand why Samuel appeared out of nowhere and why he pulled her through that door and why he pulled her through the correct door when he was trying to, I don’t know, what he was trying to do.

We weren’t really sure what he was trying to do. I know it’s made clear in the series that they weren’t aware that they were going to be sucked into another world. They thought that they were going to release the demon onto the world. We learn when Melody’s mother comes up and identifies herself at the end that she’s a Baldung, which is part of the, I think the witch’s coven that is kind of like the protectors.

I know she explains that you need to have the key and a Baldung, but the others. Have that. So that’s why it was going that way. And I guess what she was trying to say was they weren’t successful in raising the demon, but they were successful at getting sucked into the other world, but, or releasing the demon, I guess I should say that. Not raising but releasing, but then.

She does the same thing and she doesn’t have any risk of unleashing the demon. So that’s what I didn’t understand or was Samuel now the demon, and now he’s released into the world and we don’t know that I have no idea. This is listed as a limited series yet it does have a dash after the 2022. So we might have a season two of this, I don’t know, but it is set up to be a limited series and it appears. Not necessarily open-ended but pretty open ended. So I wasn’t sure about that. I wasn’t sure about the motivations for some of the characters and some of the groups.

I wasn’t sure about Samuel’s character. There was very little to no resolution with his character, and then he pops up at the end and there’s no resolution given there either. Those were some pieces that I was a little bit confused about. I definitely feel like I know what had happened. He was successful in getting Melody out and he ended up getting stuck in the other world.

As far as facts goes, that’s about the gist of what I got. We don’t know if Davenport is dead or alive or anything like that, but that’s pretty much it. We know that Dan wakes up and he’s in the hospital and he sees the news report where Kurt Cobain is announced that he was found dead. And this was in April of 1994.

It’s suggesting that he stuck in that time period, which means that he’s in this other world in 1994. One of the things that I know. And I brought this up in the spoiler free review, but one of the things I noticed was how. Much melody was able to film. They were pretty much allowing her to film whatever it was that she wanted.

And no one got hurt. Nobody. I mean, you saw the guy that got thrown off at the building, but nobody else got hurt. And you were kind of curious about that. Like, well, Melody seems to be like a huge pain in the ass for these people, but then at the end we kind of learned that. She’s who they’re looking for.

It was never really made clear as to why he was looking for her. He was looking for her because she was, I mean, I get, he says to her that she that’s how I knew you were the one I was looking for. I mean, he says that, but it’s never confirmed that she’s a Baldung until her mom appears at the end. So what was he looking for her for?

Was that the reason, what did he need her for to thin the veil and open the door? Right. There wasn’t anybody else that was seen in the first time. She wasn’t the one that was getting her throat cut. So I really don’t understand what exactly they were using her for. I know they were going to use Jess to cut her throat, but I didn’t understand, you know, just what exactly Melody’s role was in that, the other piece to that.

And I mean, if he knew that she was a belt on, then how come it didn’t work, how come they didn’t release the demon? How come they all got sucked in? You know? So it was just unclear as to where that story was. And we actually might have some answers to our questions because when we get down to the trivia, we will take a peak at that in just a sec.

And that was a smaller part, but I was a little bit curious about Jess. She’s not mentioned at all in the rest of the film, outside of saying that she gets out and she ends up becoming a net. And goes to Haiti or whatever, but nobody’s speaks to her or reaches out or communicates with her, like sh there’s no involvement or nobody attempts to reach out or find her, you know, after they learn who she really is.

So I kind of, would’ve liked to have seen that explored a little bit more, or have her come back and say something because she sort of is she’s born in that building. She’s groomed her whole life to take on this role. So she’s got a pretty strong beliefs. In this cold stuff. And then all of a sudden Melody comes to her.

It was already really, really hard for just to even believe her. And all of a sudden she gets out and then she takes off and she runs and she’s free. And then we never see her again at the Visser. She’s just gone. She’s done. I, she does go back in and she films everything and I maybe that’s what freaks her out.

And then she gets out, but I just would’ve liked to. I have seen her kind of come back and represent her part of the story and maybe give some sort of explanation or how she was able to get the tapes that she got, because she had her own collection of tapes that were in damaged that were given to her by Annabelle.

So I was just curious about that and I would have liked to have seen that story kind of come out a little bit more. All right. So let’s break down the little known facts. There are many references in terms of character names in this series that are found in Dante’s divine comedy or Dante’s Inferno, we’ll hear mentions of those characters like Dan T being Dante, things like that. Virgil. The Ferryman.

The series was based on a podcast of the same name. So now everybody has to go and open up your favorite podcasting listening ad buy in that one. First thing I did was go into Goodpods and find this. So I haven’t actually listened to any audio dramas. I have listened to a couple of true crimes. I’m curious as to how this one plays.

The podcast that the show was based on Melody is actually married to a woman named Alexa.

The film, The Circle is referenced in the series by a couple of characters and mama do athe did have a small role in the 2017 film.

That is all I have for you, everybody on Archive 81. Very, very interesting story. I really enjoyed the character building. It was a decent story and the way that it was shot and told, gave us enough of a mystery and enough weirdness that it keeps you interested throughout the whole show. I have got some feedback from others that said that it was a little bit slow.

I didn’t necessarily get that, but I’m an Ozark fan. (laughs) so when it comes to shows that have slow builds, I think I’m pretty patient when it comes to that. So if you don’t mind a little bit of a slowness, I certainly don’t feel that it was anywhere near as slow as some of the other television series. I think you just have to give it time to really get into the main story of what you’re finding.

Because again, it’s a series about a mystery and both Melody and Dan are who we are. As they are figuring out the mystery. As Melody discovers it on the tapes, Dan is discovering it as he’s restoring the tapes. It’s kind of like backtracking the story and kind of telling us the story in two pieces or at the same time.

Very interesting. I enjoyed it. And to know that it was based off of a podcast. Obviously super cool because I’m a, I wouldn’t call myself a screenwriter, but I, I am a filmmaker. And so it would be nice to turn some stuff from the podcast into a show or into a film that is the goal for script reads.

The segment that REEL Film Reviewed does from time to time. I’m releasing the second episode of that. I know everybody’s like, yeah, when’s that coming? But anyways, thank you everybody. It’s been a lot of fun. Releasing these episodes just wanted to give you a little shout out and thank everybody for supporting the pod and for supporting me in my journey in podcasting.

Thank you very much for listening everyone. I’ll catch you next time.

Outro

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Ep 39: REEL Film Reviewed- Show Transcript

Transcription by Podcasting Network

Mare of Easttown

Intro

Welcome to REEL Film Reviewed the show that delivers short spoiler free reviews of films, TV shows, and limited series. Followed by a deep dive discussion.

Brought to you by your host, Kris Chaney here is REEL Film Reviewed. 

Content

Welcome back, everyone.

This episode REEL Film Reviewed Mayor of east HBO Max’s Hit Limited Series let’s get into the spoiler free review. 

Mare is a Detective Sergeant and Easttown native and when the death of a young girl adds to a missing case of another teenage girl, she must investigate the lives of those closest to her to solve the cases. 

This series cuts deep, there are so many emotional twists and turns and I mean, that exactly as I said it. There are twists which happen and that tug at your heartstrings along with real life pain that characters are visibly living with. 

The small town vibes are real, beginning with Mare and a few local women attending a night out at their old high school honoring them from a championship year of basketball and this is where we get our first look at Mare and her relationships with those in the town and it’s important to see how she interacts, how she is viewed, and who she’s close with within the town. While this series covers main characters Mare, her family and those around her, we see three stories happening here, which we’ll dive into more after the spoiler warning. 

Looking at the cast

This whole cast was a large reason why this television limited series was as successful as it was. The whole cast worked wonderfully together. You believe that this group grew up together and truly had a love and a care for each other. Even the ones that don’t get along so well, they still have the back of the next person and they’re still relatively peaceful to that other person. Now, Kate Winslet, I think ‘’Win’’ is a perfect part of her name because she was amazing as she always is. She won an Emmy for this role of Mare Sheehan and what I love about Kate Winslet is her commanding presence on screen. Even when she’s elegant, her strength shines through in every role that she plays, she’s confident and she knows who her character is and she is that character no matter who she’s playing. You believe she had a childhood, a life and a future in the roles that she plays, and she’s had that kind of depth for years. I have to mention Titanic and how different the roles were that she played as Rose and as Mare of Easttown. The stability in the character benefits Mare so well in this because there are many hard decisions that Mare has to make and she’s consistent in those decisions, no matter how hard they may be she’s consistent. More about that post spoiler alert. 

Jean Smart delivered a wonderful performance. She was one of my favorites in the series and she was phenomenal as Mare’s mother, Helen. She was funny and appeared to be a real mother and grandmother. She brought authenticity to the role that is very hard to do sometimes, and she’s living with Mare and her family post the horrible tragedy that they were dealing with, and so she’s playing both roles simultaneously daily. She plays a wonderful support to her grown daughter and has teenage and preschool aged grandchildren and I think her duplicity in this is definitely something to be recognized. 

Julianne Nicholson also won an Emmy for her role and she had a very difficult role to play that truly could not have been a better way or person to play the role of Lori Ross, a woman who was raked with emotional waves over and over in the series and still managed to be one of the most lovable characters because you can relate to her, you can relate to her pain, of course, and also in the way that she behaves. More on that post spoiler alert as well.

The REEL View Rating: 8 out of 10 stars.

This series was killer performances by even those in small roles. The drama was intense and heavy, but you felt like it was delivered in the right amount of moderation. It’s a series involving the murder of one girl and the disappearance of another, so it’s definitely dark. The mystery and the surprising turns the show takes make it a standout as a must see binge worthy series. It is a seven episode limited series, so there will not be another season after this one and I promise you, you have not seen Kate Winslet as you do in this role and as I mentioned, she is phenomenal. 

Technical Details

Mare of Easttown was released in 2021. It was created and written by Brad Ingelsby and directed by Craig Zoebel. Starring Kate Winslet, Julianne Nicholson, Jean Smart, Angourie Rice, Cameron Mann, John Douglas Thompson, Guy Pearce, and Joe Tippett. 

The series is rated TVMA and has seven 1 hour long episodes. It can be viewed on HBO Max for free with a subscription and available for purchase from Prime Video. 

All right, here is the spoiler alert warning. Those new to REEL film reviewed after this point, I will discuss this review further, potentially and likely reviewing spoilers. 

Thank you for listening to the spoiler free review. I’ll be back after a word about my sponsors.

Spoiler Alert

Welcome back, everyone. 

Let’s dive into the REEL View Hollywood comparison. 

The REEL View rating was 8 out of 10 stars. Meta Score is not produced for TV series. However, popular film critics scored it favorably in the majority. 

Popular opinion was 8.5 out of 10 stars and Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 94%, so certified fresh.

Pretty close, very well deserved scores and honestly as close to 10 out of 10 as you can possibly get with the cast and the direction and everything that was a part of this. So let’s take a look at the plotline and there were loads of twists as well as a lot going on, so let’s break this down by situation. 

So first we’ve got Mare and her family; her son had recently hung himself. Her daughter was still grieving from finding him and losing him. She eventually moves on and at the end of the series, we see that she goes to California because it ends up being a better decision for her, a new start as well as a new chapter in her life. It was really good to kind of see that resolve. We do see Mare start to take some steps because she is still struggling with the loss and the guilt for the majority of the show and it doesn’t look like she gets any better. 

Her daughter kind of spins out of control, we see that she’s preparing some sort of a project, and we never see what the whole project ends up being but it’s obviously showing that she’s harboring some emotions and some feelings that she’s not able to share with very many people in her family, or at least that she feels like it. She certainly doesn’t feel like she can share it with Mare because of how much Mare is dealing with and how much guilt and pain she has every day and it’s visible and it kind of comes out in a lot of her mannerisms and a lot of the tasks that she has as a police officer and a detective. And you can see her kind of wear it as her badge and her reasoning why she’s motivated to do the things that she does.

The second thing; the Katie Bailey case. These are the two things that we see first. We see Mare, we learn a little bit more about the struggles that she’s got, but it’s clear that there’s something that they’re all kind of recovering from. We don’t know if that’s the divorce because we do know that she’s divorced and her husband and her ex-husband are getting remarried. So we don’t really know if it’s that. Then we eventually learn about her son and about the condition that he had and about how his son may have the same types of things. The second thing is Katie Bailey and Katie Bailey is the case of the missing girl that we first learned about in the very first episode. One of the mothers played basketball with Mare, and they meet up the night of the little honoring that they were doing for that championship basketball team and earlier in that day, we see on television that she was speaking out against the police department and again, small town. 

Everybody knows that Mare is the lead Detective on the case, and everyone knows, obviously, that Katie Bailey has been missing for one year and there are no leads, no suspects. It’s pretty much ice cold. So we know that is going on in the town, they’ve lost a little bit of faith in the police department, especially Mare, since she’s the lead detective on that case, but that’s kind of the image that she’s fighting. 

Then we come to the third thing that is occurring in the series, which is the current murder that takes place at the end of the first episode, beginning the investigation into the second episode. And that is the murder of Erin and who killed Erin. We do see Erin briefly in the first episode. 

She’s a teen mother who has a young son, she doesn’t have a mother of her own. Her mother had passed away, and her father worked a lot of hours, and he’s kind of worn down and he has a daughter, it’s just the two of them. It was a little bit of pressure on him already so when she got pregnant, that definitely added to a lot of it because according to the timeline in the series, her mother had passed away about a year before this takes place, and her son was conceived shortly after that time, which we also learn. It’s an interesting complex nature. I was pretty surprised and when they showed the body, I wasn’t even really sure who it was so when they said Erin, I was almost as shocked as her father was. I felt really surprised that was, you know – this is the twist and the turn that the story is taking. 

The ending and the recap. Obviously, there were a lot of things considering, because in the middle of all of that, we have this priest that had moved to Easttown, and he’s obviously not–I don’t think he was from there, he mentioned that Easttown was his home, he was there now. He mentioned that he had had previous allegations and there wasn’t really anywhere else for him to go and he looked guilty. And priests, obviously at this point, have had kind of a not as great of a view since everything came out a few years ago. So in this type of situation, it seemed like we were going to point the fingers at the new priest. He had possibly an inappropriate relationship with Erin, but then come to find out that while it may not have been entirely appropriate, there wasn’t anything directly inappropriate as far as any kind of inappropriate relationships between the two.

She really just called him, he picked her up and she kind of worked him and played him into taking her where she wanted to go and that’s how he ended up with her bike. And so he was kind of mixed in for a little bit, you kind of suspect him. You also suspect that the Katie Bailey case and the mystery of who killed Erin are connected and as we go through the investigations with Zabel and Mare, that’s when we learn that they’re not connected. 

Obviously, Zebel dies. That was a big shocker as well and that’s something I’m going to get into in just a second here as well, is his performance and his character, because he was definitely a huge impact. But the biggest shocker was the very end. 

So we learn when Zabel gets killed, who kidnapped Katie Bailey. Because obviously Katie Bailey and another girl are imprisoned in the little room area below the house, below the bar area. And when they kill that guy, they release those girls, they get them out, and they realize that he has absolutely no ties to Erin, and he also has an alibi. So there was no way that he could have killed Erin. Brings us back to again, who killed Aaron? Because everybody pretty much checks out, it’s kind of like back to square one almost. 

You’ve got the baby Daddy? No. Billy? No. John? No. Oh, wow. It’s Ryan [Laughs] and I remember when I started piecing it together that it was him because the call to Mr. Carroll, which I’ll talk about more in just a second as well, is what stood out to me, because that was something that happened in the first part of the series when Mrs. Carroll calls Mare. That’s how the series opens and so with this being the close and I paused the episode, and I saw how much time was left. I’m like, oh, there’s more to this, this isn’t over. And when Mr. Carroll was talking about the gun and he mentioned the specified gun that he had, that’s when Mare’s ears peaked and that’s when I was like, “interesting.” And when he led her out to the shed, that’s when everything just started coming together like a montage. I remembered the beginning where they were talking about seeing someone. He talks about how he went out there to get the gun. 

So everything kind of matches up and finally hits Mare and she runs to her house, and she looks at the security footage, and she actually sees Ryan come out of the shed with the gun or something that appears to be a gun in his pocket and the reaction that she has is that, you know, that inside she’s praying that it’s not him and that he didn’t do what she thinks he may have done and it’s confirmed when she sees him on that video, all she needs is the confession at that point. But at what point do you draw the line? This is her best friend’s son. It’s pretty much her nephew and he’s done something terrible, probably had a great reason, and he did. 

As we go through that, we learned that his father was cheating. We learned that earlier in the series, and we found out that he just pretty much got flat out fed up with it and done with it and that’s kind of what I thought. But then going through his explanation, I just thought it was so well done at the fact that it wasn’t just that this kid lost his mind, snapped, was tired of his family being ripped apart but the fact that he was just trying to scare her and accidentally killed her was the part that added the realistic value to me for the series because to me that was innocent, that was something that could have happened realistically.

It would have been harder for me to believe that a kid like that, that was seemingly always well behaved, just snapped unless he was a psychopath, but in this situation, it was a young kid who had no idea how to handle a firearm and as his mother mentioned in the series, he didn’t even know how to hold a gun and that’s very realistic for a lot of kids and the surprise of what happens. And a lot of the time it’s going to hit that person awkwardly if the gun goes off and a lot of the time, one of them gets killed. 

I was really–I don’t want to say happy, but I was pleased with how the story unfolded and how the story came together so we’ll move into breaking down the REEL view. There was very little to not like about this series, there was a lot going on. There were a lot of suspects and that is what I feel adds to the mystery. The scariest parts are not knowing. You have these terrible things happening with no explanation or even a suspect, it also could be anyone. It’s like, how do you solve a crime, a serious crime when everyone and no one can be the suspect at the same time. 

I felt there may have been a possible plot hole with the timeline when Ryan Ross gets the gun, kills Erin and then puts the gun back, from the timeline that the owner of the gun Mr. Carroll gave. But after hearing Ryan in the end and hearing how his explanation lined up, maybe the times added up. I would have to go back to listen to Mr. Carroll and to Ryan’s stories once more just to confirm whether or not those actually line up. But I like the series, and I’m not really looking to expose any plot holes in it. That was something that, as I was watching, it was something that kind of caught my interest, like; “Hmm, Would he have had enough time to do that?” Something that kind of jumped out at me a little bit. 

I really enjoyed the opening being Mare responding to Mrs. Carroll. The opening of the series, Mrs. Carroll calls Mare, goes over there and investigates. She talks about a prowler, Mare kind of doesn’t really take her seriously, but this is what started the mystery and then we have the ending when Mare is responding to Mr. Carroll. Mrs, of course, at this point, had passed away. and the visit to Mr. Carroll at the end provides explanation and closure to the mystery that started in the very first episode with Mrs. Carroll. So I enjoyed how they kind of followed up and looped around and kind of closed that loop a little bit there. 

Evan Peters also won an Emmy for his role as Colin Zabel, and I liked him a lot in this role. I was surprised and disappointed a little bit at his fate in the series, but it was a great scene and he was great leading up to that point. He played the Detective that was brought on to assist with the open missing girl case of Katie Bailey and even though he was brought on to assist, he was very young and inexperienced and throughout the show he earns Mare and the audience’s respect through his kind of admiration and following of Mare, and unfortunately, his hesitation and his inexperience kind of lead to his demise.

All right, let’s get into some little known facts. 

There are a lot of little trivia facts about this show, I’m going to give you kind of some of the main ones that I found interesting, so certainly not all of them. A complete list is certainly available. According to Craig Zobel, Kate Winslet was the only actor that was confident enough to switch between accents in between takes, the other actors maintained their Delco accents afraid to let them go while she flawlessly bounced back and forth between her normal English accent and her Delco accent that she assumed for the role of Mare. 

Kate Winslet and Julianne Nicholson are friends in real life, Nicholson’s husband is the godfather to Kate’s son Joe, and Kate was also responsible for holding the meeting in which she convinced Julianne that she would regret it if she didn’t accept the role. Thank God she did. 

Winslet also refused to be touched up or have the images touched up in any way. She wanted Mare to not be overly fit in her 40s, and she was true to that “middle aged juggling everything look” that Mare had and displayed throughout the majority of the series. Mare was complete with wrinkles and blemishes as well, and in my opinion, painting a perfect woman of today’s hero and by her request, the show’s poster was redone twice for this reason.

As an executive producer and lead actor, Kate Winslet ensured that everyone felt equal and included. She refused her trailer because it was the largest trailer of everyone’s, and she stated that everyone has to be equal on set. 

Guy Pearce’s first day on set was March 12, 2020, one day before production was paused until September and when filming did resume in September, they had to quarantine together.

My last little known fact, on the night of the finale, May 30th, 2021, the HBO Max streaming server crashed for several hours for the first time in its history, just minutes before the episode was set to air. The finale episode is the most watched episode in HBO Max’s history. Certainly understand why after watching that. 

As always, folks, please let me know what you thought of the series, if you binge watch it, let me know if you binge watched it in a day, if it took you a little bit, if you stretched it out. And as always, please let me know what you thought of the series, especially if you watched it after you heard the review. 

That’s all I have for you everyone, thank you for listening. 

I’ll catch you next time.

Outtro

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Ep 45: Archive 81 (R.2022-) TV Series

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-44vgr-11892fc

A short, spoiler free review on Netflix series, Archive 81 followed by a post viewing discussion. Created by Rebecca Sonnenshine, starring Mamoudou Athie, Dina Shihabi, Evan Jonigkeit, Julia Chan, Ariana Neal, Matt McGorry, and Martin Donovan.

An archivist hired to restore a collection of tapes finds himself reconstructing the work of a filmmaker and her investigation into a dangerous cult.

Rated: TV-MA

REEL-View Rating: ⭐️ 7/10

Length of series: 8 (1hr episodes)

Time Stamps for this episode: 

0m 0s – 4m 39s Spoiler Free

4m 40s – 18m 17s *Spoiler Alert*

Viewable In/On: Netflix

Buy the paperback on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3zfetye

TRANSCRIPTION IN PROCESS

Show Notes:

Ep 44: Being the Ricardos – Show Transcript

Nicole Kidman and Javier Bardem as Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz

Welcome to REEL Film Reviewed the show that delivers short spoiler free reviews of films, TV shows, and limited series. Followed by a deep dive discussion brought to you by your host, kris Chaney, here is REEL Film Reviewed.

Welcome back everyone. This episode REEL Film Reviewed the new biography film being the Ricardo’s focusing on Lucille ball and Desi Arnaz. Let’s get into the spoiler free. This film takes place during a production week of, I love Lucy in which they face a crisis that nearly ends their careers and another, which could end their marriage set during a time when many in Hollywood were being blacklisted for being labeled communists, the biography explored many different aspects of this story, which I will highlight now, but dive deeper into after the spoiler.

The atmosphere of the film appears to be told as an E! True Hollywood style, except the actors played, the people being interviewed as well. Jess Oppenheimer, Madeline Pugh, and Bob Carroll were portrayed twice in the film by different actors. It would give us some of the story as told like a normal onscreen telling and then would give us a behind the scenes interview footage, which was also scripted and based on what they may have believed since most of the people who made I love Lucy were involved in this story are now dead.

This was an interesting way for them to tell this. And we know that they started in, I love Lucy together for many years and were married before the show. This feature shows how they met, how they work together on and off screen. And of course the troubles they had as a famous, married couple who eventually did divorce though.

We don’t see the divorce in this film. We learn of the activities that led up to that. Lucy and Desi we’re a dynamic couple, both were very much in control with very strong and loud opinions. Basically two alphas married to each other. They still managed to have their mania between them, but would emerge in front of others to be a strong and united front.

They made commanding decisions together and played off of each other very well. I quite enjoyed the personalities that Nicole and Javier brought to these famous characters and even more famous. We get an inside. Look at how Desi and Lucy met as told by those recounting the story, as well as a re-imagining on screen.

We also learn the history and backstory of how the I love Lucy show actually came to be fellow podcasters, particularly fiction podcasters, will love this little tidbit. Make sure you come back to listen to the post viewing discussion and hear the little known facts because the film does skew some of the facts.

Reviewing the cast, Nicole Kidman. This seemed like a big test who will play the infamous Lucy. You may also think, um, maybe not Nicole. If you thought this you were wrong, at least I felt so. I did not think that Nicole was a bad choice though I thought her in interesting choice because I know how wonderfully versatile Kidman can be. And I have to say out of everyone in the film, she was the closest to the character and person that she was playing.

She played Lucy so well on and off screen, I found myself doing double takes to try and catch fragments of the actual Lucille ball being added into the shots. But it was just that Nicole pulled her off that, well, I didn’t hear any accent slips, like I sometimes do with Nicole Kidman and they were.

Multiple times during the film that I found myself genuinely impressed by her and by Lucy and being very impressed by Lucy in this film was largely due to how well Nicole Kidman played her. So I think her performance was the best of the film.

I love Javier Bardem. He’s one of my favorite actors, but my objection to him playing this role was exactly the reason he was terrible for it. Javier Bardem is well-known for his acting and his thick Spanish accent. The. Desi Arnaz AKA Ricky. Ricardo was one of the most famous Cubans of all time. His accent and love for Cuban music made him the famous band leader. We all know and love Spanish and Cuban accents are so completely different that I was offended for Javier. It was almost as if the producers said to get any Latin actor with a thick accent to play Desi, and it was appalling. And I was saddened to see one of my favorite and great actors sinking on screen. Simply because his accent was completely wrong for Desi. When he tried to mock the Cuban accent, it was on certain words and it just was horribly executed. Javier didn’t really give off the vibe of Ricky or Desi physically. I think his hair was a little longer and less jelled than Ricky’s. Physically, they look nothing alike, not even with makeup or additives, they don’t look alike at all. I don’t know enough about Desi Arnaz off screen. So the persona that Javier portrayed may have been accurate to the man behind the famous band leader and on off screen husband, Javier delivered the best performance I felt he could in this role. I just feel that he wasn’t suited for. It’s what happens when one of the most well-known Spaniards plays one of the most well-known Cubans.

Nina, Ariana, not a dead on ringer for a Vivian Vance who played at Lucy’s beloved neighbor and friend Ethel Mertz on screen. But she was excellent as both Vivian and Ethel. She appeared to be younger than Vivian was, but that may have been part of the misconception of Vivian. There is a scene in the film between Lucy and Vivian that suggests Vivian had resentment for playing Ethel, married to Fred, who was considerably older than her possibly having an issue playing second fiddle to Lucy, even though they were friends, I found her to be hilarious. And the scenes between her and JK Simmons as he played William folly were some of my favorites of the. One of the opening scenes was a table read between the actors and the two of them just played so well off of each other. It was a wonderful scene.

JK Simmons and Aaliyah shortcut JK Simmons is always enjoyable for me to watch in William Fawley we got to see so much of JKS greatness and versatility with how he connected William to. The way he played both roles and how they interacted with Vivian Vance were hilarious. They had together delivered a very convincing portrayal of what may have been going on offset of the, I love Lucy show.

Alia Shawkat I haven’t seen much, but she was an absolute delight in this film. And I will continue watching projects that she’s in. She played Madeline Pugh in this film with one of the writers on the, I love Lucy show and also the only woman comedy writer in. She nailed a comedy writer. And I don’t know much about Madeline Pugh, but feel as though I could know a little more about her with Alia’s performance. Look for her quips at fellow writer, Bob Caroll in the film.

The REEL-View is seven out of 10 stars. Part of the beauty of the roles in this film is they’re playing both the iconic characters loved on TV for years by generations, along with the actors themselves, carrying on life offset during one of the most stressful times in Hollywood hits.

Being the Ricardo’s was released in 2021. It was written and directed by Aaron Sorkin and Oscar winning screenwriter. This is only the third film directed by a Sorkin. It stars Nicole Kidman, Javier Bardem, JK Simmons, Nina Ariana, Tony Hale, and Aliyah Shocket. It is rated R and has a run time of two hours and 11 minutes that can be viewed on prime video.

All right here is the spoiler alert, warning, those new to REEL Film Reviewed, after this point, I will discuss this review further potentially and likely revealing spoilers. Thank you for listening to the spoiler free review. I’ll be back after a word about my sponsors.

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Welcome back, everyone. Let’s dive into the REEL-View -hollywood comparison. The REEL-View is seven out of 10 stars. Critics said 60. Popular opinion was 6.6 out of 10. Rotten tomatoes gave it a 69%. Recapping the plot. This film is set in the early fifties when communism was becoming a witch hunt in the United States, Lucy and Desi are in the middle of their iconic fame, about 50 episodes into I Love Lucy, Desi as a band leader at the same time at a club, and Lucy balances producing, acting, mothering, and dealing with the rumors of Desi’s infidelity.

Desi denies this for the majority of the film until the end, when he admits to it being and meaning nothing just before they film an episode in front of a live audience. We also learned that in an effort to please her grandfather and make him proud, she identified as a communist on a voter registration card years before this time.

If the news broke the show and their careers would be over. In addition to all of this, Lucy is pregnant with who we all remember on screen as little Ricky, the couples, second child, but the first to be shown on screen, Lucille Ball was the first woman to appear pregnant on one of the three major TV networks.

This was an interesting add to the film as well as this was a defining week for the show and everyone involved breaking down the real. So kind of highlighting the ending of the film. It kind of all leads up to this. There was a lot of resolution, there was Lucy wanting to get everything right for the episode.

There was the artistic side. Then there was the address of her being a communist, which she wasn’t. There was that publicity that they had to deal with. The third thing, obviously being pregnant aside, she was pregnant with having a possibly cheating husband, which she also confirms and learns at the end of the film just before they filmed the episode.

There was a lot of resolution given in the last scene with Desi being on a phone call with J Edgar Hoover, the director of the FBI at the time. Who stated publicly that she was cleared of all charges. She had been investigated and cleared of everything. So it pretty much just address the elephant in the room, right from the beginning and from the highest level of investigation, which is the director of the FBI.

Pretty impressive. In addition to the episode was one of the best episodes in its history. And it ended up being perfect. According to what Lucy was wanting throughout the whole film. The only thing that was sad was she did confirm her suspicions with Desi cheating, but obviously that’s not a good thing.

And we know that they did end up filing a for divorce after the taping of the last episode, which is in 1960. So little bit after this was set, breaking down the real. I enjoyed watching the film, as it told a lot of stories of what I have known little about, which is the behind the scenes of, I Love Lucy and their histories.

It was way before my time and a show that was on the air when my parents were born and growing up. So it was certainly. A TV land Nick at Nite type of television series watch for me, there were some facts that I looked up, but there was much that was shown on screen that isn’t really able to be verified as such as possible disagreements or how certain individuals felt that’s because almost everyone involved in the, I Love Lucy show is not around anymore.

Aside from that, I did enjoy the film. And if the majority of it was true, it certainly gives you a backstory or great backstories of everybody that was involved, that they showed and maybe a little new admiration of the people behind the show. I knew Lucille Ball was very headstrong and produced, but there were many milestones and opportunities she created for herself and for others.

And I was very impressed with that. Watching this film made me want to watch other films with Lucy in them, such as The Big Street that is mentioned in this film where Lucy plays more of a serious role than her usual slapstick comedy roles. And she did radio. That was my favorite fun fact that I learned in the film is that she was approached to be on TV because her fictional radio show, my favorite husband was so popular.

All right. Let’s move into some little known facts. And I’m also going to do a little add. I’m going to add some goofs in there because for this film, there were some trivia facts, but there were some things that were kind of misrepresented. So we call them goofs. We’ll discuss a few of those that will kind of clarify some pieces for us.

So let’s get into the facts while working for MGM. Lucy became a redhead. She wasn’t born a red head. Wasn’t always, but when she started working for MGM that’s when she became a red head.

Director, Donald Glass is a fictitious character, but he may have been based on the director, Mark Daniels, who directed the episode that they’re filming in this film, Fred and Ethel.

In January, 2021, it was reported that Kate Blanchett dropped out and was replaced by Nicole Kidman. Both our Australian actresses and blanche had, had previously worked with Kidman on eyes wide shut.

Not necessarily trivia, but just a little known fact, Lucy Arnaz posted a little YouTube video in which she kind of gave a little review of her own of this film. She described it to be an amazing film and stated that Nicole Kidman really became her mother and portrayed her very well. She did state that Javier didn’t look like her dad, but he did capture who Desi was and everything that, as she stated, dad had that kind of may help anybody who’s on the fence that was a Lucy and Desi fan they’re interested in seeing this. If you can get past the Javier Bardem choice, he does, as I mentioned, do as well as he can in this role. So according to Lucy Arnaz, he did very well at playing her father aside from the physical likeness.

All right. Let’s get into the goofs. The film portrays Lucy being dropped by RKO after her performance in The Big Street. But in actuality, her contract was bought out by MGM because they were so impressed by her performance. The film also mentioned that Lucy was 39 in The Big Street, but she was 31 when it released in 1942.

And Lucy did not seek out radio until 1948. And that’s where we learned that she was doing My Favorite Husband when they approached her for doing the television series and they wanted to take My Favorite Husband from radio and put it on television. But Lucy had a different idea in mind when she sat down with the producers and the writers, she basically stated, this is how she wanted to do the show and she wanted her husband to star in it. And they kind of went with it. Another example of when you roll the dice, things can really pay dividends. All in all an enjoyable film.

I liked it. And I’m not one of those that I’ve seen the show, but I didn’t watch it religiously. My sister has, she was kind of on the fence about that as well. She wanted it to be good, but wasn’t sure if it would be, I was really impressed with it. Just from what I know about the likenesses of Lucy. How they did it on screen. I was impressed with it. I thought it was decent.

So let me know what you guys’ thought as always. I post the polls when I release the episodes. Let me know how you felt about it. If you’re a, I love Lucy fan or a Lucy and Desi fan, let me know what you thought. That’s all I have for you, everyone.

Thanks for listening everyone. I’ll catch you next time.

Thanks for listening toREEL Film Reviewed before I go show some love for your favorite podcast by leaving a review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you like to listen. Check out the REEL Film Reviewed website, reel-film-reviewed.productions to stay up to date on episode releases, podcast updates, episode transcriptions, and more. Follow REEL Film Reviewed on Twitter @reelfilmpkc, check out the online store, REEL Merch to pick up some gear to represent.

Happy watching everyone.

Ep 44: Being the Ricardos (R.2021)

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-fmgid-1180519

A short, spoiler free review on Being the Ricardos, followed by a post viewing discussion. Written and directed by Aron Sorkin, starring Nicole Kidman, Javier Bardem, J.K. Simmons, Nina Arianda, Tony Hale, and Alia Shawkat.

This film takes place during a production week of I Love Lucy in which they face a crisis that nearly ends their careers and another which could end their marriage.

Rated: R

REEL-View Rating: ⭐️ 7/10

Length of film: 2hr 11m

Time Stamps for this episode: 

0m 0s – 8m 10s Spoiler Free

8m 11s – 17m 41s *Spoiler Alert*

Viewable In/On: Amazon Prime Video

Rent or Buy on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3zfetye

TRANSCRIPTION IN PROCESS

Show Notes: