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Verbal Diorama

A show and tell show about movies

Hi. I'm Em. I love movies and tv. I also talk a lot. A podcast was therefore inevitable...Join me on my journey through the history and legacy of movies you know, and movies you don't.
Latest Episode
2020-1-16

Kubo and the Two Strings

Season 1, Ep. 29

If you saw Kubo and the Two Strings, you'd probably be in agreement with me when I say that's it's the most stunning achievement in stop motion filmmaking, and Laika deserve all the accolades.


The problem is, not many people did see it. In fact although it's arguably Laika's best work, it's also one of their biggest financial failures, which is a travesty and we should all hang our heads in shame (me included - I first saw it on Blu-Ray!).


Telling the story of a young boy on an epic quest, it's a tale of the bond of family (especially mothers and sons), found family, courage, power, memories and ultimately that kindness is a strength, not a weakness.


The sheer feat of skill, technology, engineering, innovation and determination is etched into every snowflake and leaf all the way up to a record breaking 16 foot tall skeleton puppet.


In short, this movie surpasses technical achievement. It's exceptional. And, like me, you'll probably cry a lot.


Visit Laika's YouTube Channel here


I would love to hear your thoughts on Kubo and the Two Strings! You can get in touch on

Twitter @verbaldiorama

Instagram @verbaldiorama

Facebook @verbaldiorama

YouTube @verbaldiorama

Letterboxd @verbaldiorama


or you can email me general hellos, feedback or suggestions:

verbaldiorama [at] gmail [dot] com


Thank you to our Patreon Producer Sade, patrons Simon E, Jardiel, Claudia and Simon B for supporting Verbal Diorama! To support the show on Patreon from just $2 a month, have a look over at https://www.patreon.com/verbaldiorama and choose your Keanu - you can now get the majority of episodes early too!


You can rate or review the show in iTunes or at Apple Podcasts and I'd very much appreciate that!


My website is at https://verbaldiorama.com


Thanks to the following for their contributions to this episode:


Twitter peeps

@SYIMS_Podcast

@FalseStartsPod

@Robnoady

@TheMiddleborne

@GnarlyJimbob


Instagram folk

@mobisze

@vegimorph

@thisfilmislit


Theme Music: Verbal Diorama Theme Song

Music by Chloe Enticott - Compositions by Chloe Facebook

Lyrics by Chloe Enticott (and me!)


Production by Ellis Powell-Bevan of Ewenique Studios.

2020-1-16

Kubo and the Two Strings

Season 1, Ep. 29

If you saw Kubo and the Two Strings, you'd probably be in agreement with me when I say that's it's the most stunning achievement in stop motion filmmaking, and Laika deserve all the accolades.


The problem is, not many people did see it. In fact although it's arguably Laika's best work, it's also one of their biggest financial failures, which is a travesty and we should all hang our heads in shame (me included - I first saw it on Blu-Ray!).


Telling the story of a young boy on an epic quest, it's a tale of the bond of family (especially mothers and sons), found family, courage, power, memories and ultimately that kindness is a strength, not a weakness.


The sheer feat of skill, technology, engineering, innovation and determination is etched into every snowflake and leaf all the way up to a record breaking 16 foot tall skeleton puppet.


In short, this movie surpasses technical achievement. It's exceptional. And, like me, you'll probably cry a lot.


Visit Laika's YouTube Channel here


I would love to hear your thoughts on Kubo and the Two Strings! You can get in touch on

Twitter @verbaldiorama

Instagram @verbaldiorama

Facebook @verbaldiorama

YouTube @verbaldiorama

Letterboxd @verbaldiorama


or you can email me general hellos, feedback or suggestions:

verbaldiorama [at] gmail [dot] com


Thank you to our Patreon Producer Sade, patrons Simon E, Jardiel, Claudia and Simon B for supporting Verbal Diorama! To support the show on Patreon from just $2 a month, have a look over at https://www.patreon.com/verbaldiorama and choose your Keanu - you can now get the majority of episodes early too!


You can rate or review the show in iTunes or at Apple Podcasts and I'd very much appreciate that!


My website is at https://verbaldiorama.com


Thanks to the following for their contributions to this episode:


Twitter peeps

@SYIMS_Podcast

@FalseStartsPod

@Robnoady

@TheMiddleborne

@GnarlyJimbob


Instagram folk

@mobisze

@vegimorph

@thisfilmislit


Theme Music: Verbal Diorama Theme Song

Music by Chloe Enticott - Compositions by Chloe Facebook

Lyrics by Chloe Enticott (and me!)


Production by Ellis Powell-Bevan of Ewenique Studios.

2020-1-9

Akira (ft Anita & Ciara from The Unexceptionals)

Season 1, Ep. 28

The animation season continues with Akira, pre-recorded in November 2019, live at SAMM's Peterborough, where I met up with my special guests Anita and Ciara from The Unexceptionals podcast, and quite frankly they couldn't have been nicer and more brilliant.


Set in 2019, the legendary anime Akira is more relevant to our real 2019 than our 1988 could have possibly predicted. It's a story of isolation, fear and the corruption of power and youth, and asks questions about our existence and the evolution of humanity post-disaster. This version of Neo-Tokyo contrasts between the bright beautiful neon cityscape and the dismal dark downtown streets where young people like Tetsuo and Kaneda face an uncertain future.


It's also a movie that continues to influence other movies; Inception, Chronicle and The Matrix all take themes from Akira and with a Taika Waititi-directed live-action remake in the pipeline, Akira will continue to inspire cinema for years to come. We also talk about the movies that influenced Akira's look, such as Blade Runner and Tron. Basically, this movie looks, sounds and feels stunning.


In summary, I recorded Akira with the collective noun "A-Ciara" and we had, quite frankly, a massive amount of fun talking about an iconic anime that you should be watching!


It's worth noticing there is occasionally a bit of an echo on my voice (because their mics also picked me up!) but I've tried to reduce it. Hopefully it's not too off-putting!


Massive thanks to the hilarious and amazing Anita and Ciara for guesting on Akira. They can be found and followed at @_unexceptionals on Twitter, Instagram & Facebook, and the first season of The Unexceptionals can be downloaded wherever you get your podcasts from. The second season will be out early this year, so watch out for that!


I would love to hear your thoughts on Akira! You can get in touch on

Twitter @verbaldiorama

Instagram @verbaldiorama

Facebook @verbaldiorama

YouTube @verbaldiorama

Letterboxd @verbaldiorama


or you can email me general hellos, feedback or suggestions:

verbaldiorama [at] gmail [dot] com


Thank you to our Patreon Producer Sade, patrons Simon E, Jardiel, Claudia and new patron Simon B for supporting Verbal Diorama! To support the show on Patreon from just $2 a month, have a look over at https://www.patreon.com/verbaldiorama and choose your Keanu!


You can rate or review the show in iTunes or at Apple Podcasts and I'd very much appreciate that!


My website is at https://verbaldiorama.com


Theme Music: Verbal Diorama Theme Song

Music by Chloe Enticott - Compositions by Chloe Facebook

Lyrics by Chloe Enticott (and me!)


Production by Ellis Powell-Bevan of Ewenique Studios.


Thanks to SAMM's Peterborough for allowing us use of their basement at the venue for recording!

2019-12-24

Arthur Christmas

Season 1, Ep. 27

Our animation season kicks off with a heartwarming family Christmas favourite, starring Dasher, Dancer, Prancer....erm, Bambi, John, the one with the white ear and Santa's youngest son Arthur, who'll do anything to get young Gwen Hines a present on Christmas morning after she's accidentally missed by Santa's high-tech delivery system.


It's a movie that comments on inter-generational conflict, inheritance, our reliance on technology and loss of tradition, as well as our own egotistical behaviours, but mostly it's about the true meaning of Christmas - compassion, family, belief and the joy of giving.


It's also gorgeous and very British, courtesy of the genius of Aardman Animation.


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you all!


PS I swear I was not drunk during recording! Also, Jess was around for editing.


I would love to hear your thoughts on Arthur Christmas! You can get in touch on

Twitter @verbaldiorama

Instagram @verbaldiorama

Facebook @verbaldiorama

YouTube @verbaldiorama

Letterboxd @verbaldiorama


or you can email me general hellos, feedback or suggestions:

verbaldiorama [at] gmail [dot] com


Thank you to our Patreon Producer Sade and patrons Simon, Jardiel and Claudia for supporting Verbal Diorama! To support the show on Patreon from just $2 a month, have a look over at https://www.patreon.com/verbaldiorama and choose your Keanu


You can rate or review the show in iTunes or at Apple Podcasts and I'd very much appreciate that!


My website is at https://verbaldiorama.com


Theme Music: Verbal Diorama Theme Song

Music by Chloe Enticott - Compositions by Chloe Facebook

Lyrics by Chloe Enticott (and me!)


Production by Ellis Powell-Bevan of Ewenique Studios.

2019-12-21

Constantine

Season 1, Ep. 26

Keanu Reeves is often criticised for not "acting" enough in his movies. He may not be the John Constantine of comic book fans dreams, but with his literal devil-may-care attitude and cynical despondence on full display, I think he pretty much nails this John Constantine - a man at the end of his life, desperate to save enough souls from damnation so he can go to Heaven after a teenage suicide attempt leaves him with no option but to go to Hell.


Pair him with Rachel Weisz, (a woman who could make a movie of herself cooking eggs and I'd watch it), and her effervescent charm, it really is great to watch them together.


Religious subtexts aside, this is a movie about faith in humanity too. John's faith is restored by his dealings with Weisz's bereaved police detective Angela Dodson and although he becomes a hero, it's not really about his journey to heroism, more about giving the finger to authority and doing the right thing.


Listen, I know you know how much I loved Dredd for its ability to adapt its source material so effectively, and Constantine is not without source material (and a more faithful TV show), but if this movie was called anything else, it wouldn't be as derided as it unfortunately was. It still looks good after 15 years, and while some of the performances stand out as being less than hellblazing (I'm looking at you Gavin Rossdale!), Keanu's is pretty great actually - and I'm not the only person who thinks so (thankfully!)


I would love to hear your thoughts on Constantine! You can get in touch on

Twitter @verbaldiorama

Instagram @verbaldiorama

Facebook @verbaldiorama

YouTube @verbaldiorama

Letterboxd @verbaldiorama


or you can email me general hellos, feedback or suggestions:

verbaldiorama [at] gmail [dot] com


Thank you to our Patreon Producer Sade, patrons Simon and Jardiel and new patron Claudia for supporting Verbal Diorama! To support the show on Patreon from just $2 a month, have a look over at https://www.patreon.com/verbaldiorama and choose your Keanu (John Constantine is an option!!)


You can rate or review the show in iTunes or at Apple Podcasts and I'd very much appreciate that!


My website is at https://verbaldiorama.com


Thanks to the following for their contributions to this episode:


Twitter peeps


@WooLongTalks

@FilmbustersPaul

@MoviesWork

@movievirginspod

@Capt_Hangry

@kevin_thecritic

@NerdsWithFriend

@simon_exton

@trivia_chic

@tepidville

@ComicsinMotionP

@JRSP_1978

@nle318

@RobWadeVision

@lukesolo73


Instagram folk

@talesofpeck


Theme Music: Verbal Diorama Theme Song

Music by Chloe Enticott - Compositions by Chloe Facebook

Lyrics by Chloe Enticott (and me!)


Production by Ellis Powell-Bevan of Ewenique Studios.

2019-12-15

Stardust

Season 1, Ep. 25

Once upon a time, there was a prince. His name was Neil Gaiman. He wrote a book called Stardust. He wished upon a fallen star for it to be excellent, be directed by the extremely talented Matthew Vaughn and star some of Hollywood's all time greats plus a league of British comedic talent and a young up-and-coming actor called Charlie Cox.


His wish came true.


He lived happily ever after.


The end.


Stardust is great! Even my nephew loves it and he's three!


Oh and I just realised Captain Shakespeare is a literal Sky Captain. Call back to Sky Captain!


I would love to hear your thoughts on Stardust! You can get in touch on

Twitter @verbaldiorama

Instagram @verbaldiorama

Facebook @verbaldiorama

YouTube @verbaldiorama

Letterboxd @verbaldiorama


or you can email me general hellos, feedback or suggestions:

verbaldiorama [at] gmail [dot] com


Thank you to our Patreon Producer Sade, and patrons Simon and Jardiel for supporting Verbal Diorama! To support the show on Patreon from just $2 a month, have a look over at https://www.patreon.com/verbaldiorama and choose your Keanu.....


You can rate or review the show in iTunes or at Apple Podcasts and I'd very much appreciate that!


My website is at https://verbaldiorama.com


Thanks to the following for their contributions to this episode:


Twitter peeps

@NFTDT

@trivia_chic

@thisfilmislit


Instagram folk

@contrarianprime

@sherbert_lemons

@bookofliespodcast


Real Life

My sister

My 3 year old nephew!


Theme Music: Verbal Diorama Theme Song

Music by Chloe Enticott - Compositions by Chloe Facebook

Lyrics by Chloe Enticott (and me!)


Production by Ellis Powell-Bevan of Ewenique Studios.

2019-12-5

Passengers

Season 1, Ep. 24

2016's Passengers, starring Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence and Hollywood heartthrob Chris Pratt should have had an easy journey to sci-fi greatness. Its script was championed in the 2007 Hollywood Black List, it enticed an Oscar nominated director and Sony believed in it so much they upped the budget to $120 million. There was a lot riding on the success of the Starship Avalon's 120-year voyage to Homestead II.


The problem is..... it's meant to be romantic, but just ends up feeling, well, really creepy.


Passengers is a movie with a lot of promise. It wants to be a cautionary tale on our reliance on technology and trusting of big corporations, the social and class divide between the rich and the poor, for us to ask questions about moral quandaries, to empathise with a character’s isolation and loneliness and the broader implications of artificial intelligence but it kinda takes all these interesting and rich discussions and bookends them with “yeah, but they’re both really hot” and never really satisfactorily answers any of the moral questions it asks of itself. 


It's a shame. The thing is, it could very easily be fixed with a few choice edits....


I would love to hear your thoughts on Passengers! You can get in touch on

Twitter @verbaldiorama

Instagram @verbaldiorama

Facebook @verbaldiorama

YouTube @verbaldiorama

Letterboxd @verbaldiorama


or you can email me general hellos, feedback or suggestions:

verbaldiorama [at] gmail [dot] com


Thank you to our Patreon Producer Sade, and also our new patrons Simon and Jardiel for supporting Verbal Diorama! To support the show on Patreon from just $2 a month, have a look over at https://www.patreon.com/verbaldiorama and choose your Keanu.....


You can rate or review the show in iTunes or at Apple Podcasts and I'd very much appreciate that!


My website is at https://verbaldiorama.com


Thanks to the following for their contributions to this episode:


Twitter peeps

@BlkGirlsDoStuff

@capunderstands

@SYIMS_Podcast

@BTipplers

@MoviesWork

@iused2watchthis

@alwayscriticpod

@RoleplayRetcon

@robinhoodpod

@kolbytoldme

@core_xtra

@cwordpod

@CuylerisGreen

@litgamingarena

@reeltroublepod

@agentcoop007

@RobynandDani

@Wizard_Matt

@JasonKruppa


Instagram folk

@contrarianprime

@eatcrime


Facebook buds

Erik Carlson


Theme Music: Verbal Diorama Theme Song

Music by Chloe Enticott - Compositions by Chloe Facebook

Lyrics by Chloe Enticott (and me!)


Production by Ellis Powell-Bevan of Ewenique Studios.

2019-11-14

Mystery Men (ft Andy from Geek Salad)

Season 1, Ep. 23

"When you doubt your powers, you give power to your doubts."


I'm joined by the mysterious and manly Andy from Geek Salad to discuss whoever smelled it dealt it, disco not being dead and clouds of radically fluctuating deviant chaotrons.


With a huge and established cast of great 90s comedians and character actors as the Six Very Nearly Dead Guys With a Temporary Reprieve, 1999's Mystery Men had everything going for it. It was smart, daft and funny, it commented on capitalism and superhero cynicism but also came out well before the superhero genre boomed. In many ways, it was a movie before its time. Roughly 15 years before its time.


It also had the unfortunate experience of coming out in the same day in America as The Sixth Sense, which dominated the box office, leaving Mystery Men feeling like the Invisible Boy at most cinemas. It also feels very reminiscent of Joel Schumacher's Batman movies, with a bright colour palette and vibrant neon CG cityscapes. Not the most pleasant comparison in the world to make, but a comparison it is.


In the modern era of superhero movies dominating the box office, as well as all the merchandising and branding, it's refreshing to see a movie tackle the "other guys" and the fact that they are just everyday normal people, trying their best to be exceptional and to do the right thing. Everyone loves an underdog story. These are the forking biggest underdogs. No need to Shovel it in your face. I don't want to make you Furious.


Will we ever find out if Lance Hunt and Captain Amazing are the same person? Lance Hunt wears glasses you see, and Captain Amazing doesn't, so it's really tricky to tell if those rumours are true....


Slight mistake in the episode: Janeane Garofalo's character is called Carol, not Karen! Ooops. Don't set Carmine the Bowler on me, please!


I would love to hear your thoughts on Mystery Men! You can get in touch on

Twitter @verbaldiorama

Instagram @verbaldiorama

Facebook @verbaldiorama

YouTube @verbaldiorama

Letterboxd @verbaldiorama


or you can email me general hellos, feedback or suggestions:

verbaldiorama [at] gmail [dot] com


You can rate or review the show in iTunes or at Apple Podcasts and I'd very much appreciate that!


My website is at https://verbaldiorama.com


Thanks to the following for their contributions to this episode:


Andy, from Geek Salad, obviously! He can be found over @geeksaladradio on Twitter and he's an absolute joy!


Twitter peeps

@BlkGirlsDoStuff

@capunderstands

@MoviesWork

@ThefilmB

@ContrarianPrime

@FilmbustersPaul

@trivia_chic

@LatteThunder

@FriendsNFlayers

@ColbsBulbs

@filmcellar

@Hoovalicious84

@Anotherfilmnerd


Instagram folk

@moviesatthematt


Theme Music: Verbal Diorama Theme Song

Music by Chloe Enticott - Compositions by Chloe Facebook

Lyrics by Chloe Enticott (and me!)


Production by Ellis Powell-Bevan of Ewenique Studios.