Cross-Promotion: Knock Off (1998) on Crushed Celluloid’s Jean-Pod Van Damme Podcast

I was recently invited back to join in on another episode of Jean-Pod Van Damme, a podcast that, as you’d likely guess, is solely dedicated to the cinematic wonders of the Muscles from Brussels, JCVD. Hosted by Marcus Jones of the movie blog Crushed Celluloid (which has an eponymous flagship podcast as well), Jean-Pod Van Damme is a irony-free celebration of one of action cinema’s more unlikely stars, a meathead European martial arts expert who stumbles in convincingly delivering his laugh lines. In this specific episode of JPVD, Marcus & I discussed the 1998 Van Damme/Rob Schneider team-up action comedy Knock Off. Directed by Tsui Hark (the same Hong Kong legend who directed JCVD’s team-up with Dennis Rodman, Double Team), Knock Off is a kind of spiritual sequel to the film I discussed with Marcus the last time I guested on his show.

Give a listen to Jean-Pod Van Damme’s episode on Knock Off below! And if you like what you hear, you can find Crushed Celluloid on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and their regular ol’ homepage for more enthusiastic takes on fringe genre cinema.

-Brandon Ledet

Cross-Promotion: The RoboCop Series on The Bangers & Mash Show

I was recently invited back as a returning guest on an episode of The Bangers n’ Mash Show to discuss one of my all-time favorite film properties: RoboCop. My previous contribution to the Bangers n’ Mash podcast was in the form of short clips on their 2016 Phantom Awards episode. This conversation was much more substantial. I join the show’s co-host Zack [Mr. Bangers] to not only discuss the original Paul Verhoeven classic RoboCop (1987), but its various sequels, reboots, re-imaginings, and bastardized multi-media spinoffs. Highlights include RoboCop’s brief pro wrestling career & Korean fried chicken commercial. Lowlights include the 2014 major studio robo-reboot & various failed television series. It was a great excuse to gush at length over one of my all-time favorite movies and to finally push myself to watch its little-loved offspring that I’ve been avoiding for decades, namely RoboCop 3.

Give a listen to the Bangers n’ Mash episode on RoboCop below. And if you like what you hear, give a listen to more episodes of the podcast on their YouTube page.

-Brandon Ledet

Cross-Promotion: Xanadu (1980) on the We Love to Watch Podcast

I was recently invited back as a returning guest on an episode of the We Love to Watch podcast to discuss the ELO-scored disco musical Xanadu. In our recent Movie of the Month discussion of Cool as Ice, the rap-oriented Vanilla Ice reimagining of the Marlon Brando classic The Wild One, I rambled loftily about the beautifully absurdist space where art & commerce collide in the precious few cult classic movies that actually live up to their “so bad it’s good” designation. Xanadu is a perfect example of the exact dynamic I was getting at in that conversation, the sublimely strange accidents where cinema is nakedly exposed to be both art and commerce, cynically so. Instead of selling Vanilla Ice as a tough guy leading man material, however, Xanadu is tasked with marrying the spectacle of Old Hollywood musicals (represented in the film by Gene Kelly) with a then-fresh sense of disco futurism (represented by Olivia Newton John & ELO). As you’ll hear in the episode, the results aren’t consistently cohesive or competent, but they are always memorably bizarre. More importantly, they also point to a very specific kind of movie magic where blatant commercialism accidentally stumbles into the territory of fine art.

Besides having the chance to further explore this idea of cinema’s dual role as art & a product, it was super fun to return as a guest to a show I listen to regularly. Aaron & Peter were incredibly kind to invite me back after we discussed The Fly (1958) last October. Their podcast is wonderfully in sync with the sincere & empathetic ethos we try to maintain on this site (especially when covering so-called “bad movies”), so I highly recommend digging through old episodes & clips on the We Love to Watch blog & YouTube page. And, of course, please start by giving a listen to their episode on Xanadu below.

-Brandon Ledet

Cross-Promotion: The 2016 Phantom Awards on The Bangers n’ Mash Show

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I was recently invited to contribute to The Bangers n’ Mash Show’s annual Phantom Awards episode to once again highlight the Best Films of 2016. According to the episode description, “Mr. Bangers and Mr. Mash welcome the new year with [their] annual tradition: The Phantom Awards! As [they] do every January, [they] gather to give awards out to the best sci-fi, horror, and fantasy films of the previous year.” I submitted a few audio clips to the episode along with several other contributors (including Crushed Celluloid’s Marcus Jones) to throw some much deserved praise towards the Kevin Spacey talking cat comedy Nine Lives, the under-seen home invasion thriller Emelie, and my beloved The Neon Demon.

Give a listen to the 2016 Phantom Awards below! And if you like what you hear, give a listen to more episodes of The Bangers ‘n Mash Show on their YouTube playlist.

-Brandon Ledet

Cross-Promotion: Double Team (1997) on Crushed Celluloid’s Jean-Pod Van Damme Podcast

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I was recently invited to join in on an episode of Jean-Pod Van Damme, a podcast that, as you’d likely guess, is solely dedicated to the cinematic wonders of the Muscles from Brussels, JCVD. Hosted by Marcus Jones of the movie blog Crushed Celluloid (which has an eponymous flagship podcast as well), Jean-Pod Van Damme is a irony-free celebration of one of action cinema’s more unlikely stars, a meathead European martial arts expert who stumbles in convincingly delivering his laugh lines. Crushed Celluloid as a whole, including their two podcasts & periodic film articles, participates in the exact earnest approach to typically undervalued genre cinema that we strive to achieve here at Swampflix and I’m proud to have been asked to contribute to what they already do so well.

In this specific episode of JPVD, Marcus & I discussed the 1997 Van Damme/Dennis Rodman team-up action comedy Double Team.  In my own review of the film, I described it as “gloriously half-cooked” & “a mid-90s camp relic most notable for its inclusion of a gender-defiant fashion prankster with some highly questionable political affiliations who apparently used to play basketball or something.” It was a lot of fun, then, to dissect something so frivolous at length with someone who’s a huge fan of its top-billed star and, honestly, I was more than a little flattered to even be asked, since I had only ever guested on a podcast once before (when I discussed the Vincent Price version of The Fly with the folks at We Love to Watch).

Give a listen to Jean-Pod Van Damme’s episode on Double Team below! And if you like what you hear, you can find Crushed Celluloid on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and their regular ol’ homepage for more enthusiastic takes on fringe genre cinema.

 

-Brandon Ledet