Episode 108: Gladiator (2000)

The guys head back in time to the glorious Roman-Aussie empire to do battle alongside Russell Crowe in Ridley Scott’s 2000 film, Gladiator. The film follows a general who became a slave, a slave who became a gladiator, a gladiator who probably never told a joke in his life, Maximus Decimus Meridius as he attempts to thwart the purely evil Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix) and lay the smackdown on CGI tigers alongside tag team partner Juba (Djimon Hounsou). Though the film is largely gratuitous action, it took home Best Picture at the Academy Awards, and the Bit Players try to reconcile how the film holds up with the incredibly high praise it received at the time, thinking about how it would be received were it released today. After all, the only things keeping this movie from feeling a lot like 300 are dynamic Richard Harris and Oliver Reed performances. The discussion on Gladiator becomes a bit of a reckoning as it slowly dawns on the group that this movie, though totally badass, just might not be that good.

Gladiator (2000)
Director
Ridley Scott
Stars
Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Oliver Reed, Derek Jacobi, Djimon Hounsou, Richard Harris

Selected By
The Bit Players

4.4

Aired Monday, November 20, 2017

The guys head back in time to the glorious Roman-Aussie empire to do battle alongside Russell Crowe in Ridley Scott's 2000 film, Gladiator. The film follows a general who became a slave, a slave who became a gladiator, a gladiator who probably never told a joke in his life, Maximus Decimus Meridius as he attempts to thwart the purely evil Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix) and lay the smackdown on CGI tigers alongside tag team partner Juba (Djimon Hounsou). Though the film is largely gratuitous action, it took home Best Picture at the Academy Awards, and the Bit Players try to reconcile how the film holds up with the incredibly high praise it received at the time, thinking about how it would be received were it released today. After all, the only things keeping this movie from feeling a lot like 300 are dynamic Richard Harris and Oliver Reed performances. The discussion on Gladiator becomes a bit of a reckoning as it slowly dawns on the group that this movie, though totally badass, just might not be that good.

Featuring "Now We Are Free" by Hans Zimmer & Lisa Gerrard

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Midnight Showing: Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)

Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)
Director
Zack Snyder
Stars
Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Jesse Eisenberg, Holly Hunter, Gal Gadot, Michael Shannon

Selected By
The Bit Players

2.2

Aired Friday, April 1, 2016

The guys don their capes and masks once again and head to the cinema for Zack Snyder's behemoth superhero flick Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. It's been a polarizing film since its inception, and that certainly didn't change when the film was finally released. They discuss just what the DC Cinematic Universe has in store with this "dawn," what exactly these super hero films must do to be successful, the nature of subjectivity in art and whether this could even be classified as art. Just kidding! They talk about flying and explosions.

Episode 47: Batman Begins (2005)

To the Bit Cave we go this week as the guys break down Christopher Nolan’s 2005 Batman Begins, the first installment in the Dark Knight trilogy starring Christian Bale. They discuss how well (or poorly) Bale works as Batman/Bruce Wayne, the wonder of Liam Neesons, and how the film expertly navigates the world of Gotham baddies by putting forth more of a conglomerate of evil than a single prolific villain. They also pick what would make for the best Batman Begins action figure as well as their personal favorite Batman villains.

Batman Begins (2005)
Director
Christopher Nolan
Stars
Christian Bale, Katie Holmes, Liam Neeson, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Gary Oldman, Cillian Murphy, Tom Wilkinson, Ken Watanabe, Mark Boone Junior

Selected By
Brian

4.6

what movies are
About

Aired Wednesday, March 23, 2016

To the Bit Cave we go this week as the guys break down Christopher Nolan's 2005 Batman Begins, the first installment in the Dark Knight trilogy starring Christian Bale. They discuss how well (or poorly) Bale works as Batman/Bruce Wayne, the wonder of Liam Neesons, and how the film expertly navigates the world of Gotham baddies by putting forth more of a conglomerate of evil than a single prolific villain. They also pick what would make for the best Batman Begins action figure as well as their personal favorite Batman villains.

Cruis’n World: Days of Thunder (1990)

Rev up your engines for the first installment of Cruis’n World, the Bit Players semi-regular celebration of Tom Cruise. For the first time out, the guys head to Daytona, Florida for Cruise’s 1990 NASCAR film Days of Thunder, directed by Tony Scott. The film sees Cruise steaming up the screen with Nicole Kidman and burning up the track with Robert Duvall and Michael Rooker. Days of Thunder came at a time when Cruise was nearly at his most powerful, riding the success of another Scott-directed film, Top Gun, and he could do no wrong here. A character named Cole Trickle doesn’t even need a backstory, as long as he’s got some smoke to emerge from.

Days of Thunder (1990)
Director
Tony Scott
Stars
Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, Robert Duvall, Randy Quaid, Michael Rooker, Cary Elwes

Selected By
The Bit Players

3.8

Aired Friday, October 2, 2015

Rev up your engines for the first installment of Cruis'n World, the Bit Players semi-regular celebration of Tom Cruise. For the first time out, the guys head to Daytona, Florida for Cruise's 1990 NASCAR film Days of Thunder, directed by Tony Scott. The film sees Cruise steaming up the screen with Nicole Kidman and burning up the track with Robert Duvall and Michael Rooker. Days of Thunder came at a time when Cruise was nearly at his most powerful, riding the success of another Scott-directed film, Top Gun, and he could do no wrong here. A character named Cole Trickle doesn't even need a backstory, as long as he's got some smoke to emerge from.

Episode 17: Interstellar (2014)

The guys head to the cosmos for this week’s episode on Christopher Nolan’s 2014 film Interstellar. They are particularly awe-struck by the conceptual ambition on display here, like most of other Nolan’s films, but what makes Interstellar so special is the film’s ability to finally bring heady concepts and visual grandiosity together with raw, impactful human emotions. The performances from Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway – not to mention the brilliant supporting cast – truly bring out those emotions in a poignant way that makes Interstellar such a special film. The guys also put themselves in Romily’s shoes and try to fill 23 years worth of down time and talk about their favorite corn-based snacks.

Interstellar (2014)
Director
Christopher Nolan
Stars
Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Michael Caine, Matt Damon

Selected By
Brian

4.6

what movies are
About

Aired Friday, July 31, 2015
The guys head to the cosmos for this week’s episode on Christopher Nolan’s 2014 film Interstellar. They are particularly awe-struck by the conceptual ambition on display here, like most of other Nolan’s films, but what makes Interstellar so special is the film’s ability to finally bring heady concepts and visual grandiosity together with raw, impactful human emotions. The performances from Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway – not to mention the brilliant supporting cast – truly bring out those emotions in a poignant way that makes Interstellar such a special film. The guys also put themselves in Romily’s shoes and try to fill 23 years worth of down time and talk about their favorite corn-based snacks.