ATH Presents: Behind the Hype

40 Episodes

By: After The Hype

An in-depth look at filmmakers' careers through their early or obscure work.

The Snyder Cut: Sucker Punch (2011)
Last Thursday at 3:42 PM

This week we're taking a look at perhaps one of the most hated films in the Zack Snyder filmography: Sucker Punch. It's been dismissed as exploitative, and has been derided for its depiction of women. It also features more special effects, explosions, and those darn slow-mo shots people keep making fun of all the time online. So, what if we told you that the Extended Cut solves most, if not all of those problems, and that maybe some of those problems were but projections of an already biased audience? Let's get into it, shall we?

The Snyder Cut: Dawn of the Dead (2004)

Here at Behind the Hype we've decided that it's time to take a deep dive into one of the more divisive filmmakers out there today: Zack Snyder. People either love his work or hate it, and no matter where you fall on that spectrum you can't deny that he is a visionary filmmaker. We're going to be discussing his "Snyder Cuts" this month, starting this week with his "director's cut" of Dawn of the Dead. 

The DC isn't all that much longer than the theatrical version and it doesn't significantly change the quality of the movie, but i...

Showa Era Godzilla: Godzilla vs Mechagodzilla (1974)

While we're sad to bring our month of Showa Era Godzilla films to a close, we're glad we picked Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla as our last film to discuss. It's got ape-like aliens trying to conquer earth, interpol agents disguised as muckraking journalists, a musical number, and a monster named King Caesar who helps Godzilla kick the ever-loving ish out of the titular villain. Try not to grin like a goof-ball at any given moment. We dare you.

Also in this episode we discuss plans for next month. Here's a hint: Director's Cuts.

Showa Era Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters (1968)

The next film in our month of Showa Era Godzilla films is Destroy All Monsters, which features all your favorite monsters and then some as they terrorize all the major cities of the world. But what has caused them to go on such a unified rampage? Aliens. That's right, an all-women race of aliens called the Kilaaks have bent all the monsters to their will and it's up to a fearless space captain to set things right. To say that this film is a blast is a bit of an understatement. It may not be as uniquely humorous as...

Showa Era Godzilla: Son of Godzilla (1967)

We continue our delightful dive into the Showa Era Godzilla films this week with the energetic Son of Godzilla. It's a cheeseball film that delights in the silly antics of its titular character and only really manages to stumble when it comes to the human story. The costumes, props, puppets, and miniatures are in top form here and it's hard to not watch this with a grin on your face. This one goes out to all you reporters out there who parachute to mysterious islands to find the big stories.

Showa Era Godzilla: King Kong Vs. Godzilla (1962)

Godzilla is such a pop culture icon that we thought it would be a great idea to dive into some of his more iconic outings this month on Behind the Hype, starting with the third film in the series: King Kong vs. Godzilla. Apart from one problem spot, the film is quite a delight and features everything fun you would expect from a showdown of two pop culture titans.

Sion Sono: Guilty of Romance (2011)

We've reached the end of our month on Sion Sono and to wrap things up we've picked quite the heavy film: Guilty of Romance. There's a lot to unpack with this film, about the role of women in Japanese society and the lengths they will go to break free from said pressures, or in some cases become consumed by them. As we were short a woman on this episode to give some perspective we tried to instead focus on the things we learned from the film and the themes that resonated with us versus trying to speak to Japanese...

Sion Sono: Suicide Club (2001)

Due to some version confusion we had to push our review of Guilty of Romance to next week. In its place we're going to talk about the movie that put Sion Sono on the map for western audiences: Suicide Club. It's difficult to summarize the movie and do the horrific imagery and biting commentary justice, but we do our best. Just the opening few minutes of the movie should clue you in on the doozy of a film you're about to experience.

Sion Sono: Tokyo Tribe (2014)

Our Sion Sono retrospective continues with the rap opera Tokyo Tribe, a doozy of a film that starts out rough and then ends with one hell of a punchline. It features a cast of fascinating and colorful characters that sing their way through bouts of ultra-violence. It features perhaps one of the most fun and over-the-top villains we've seen yet on this podcast. And if that weren't enough, it features the daughter of a satanic high priest kicking all kinds of ass with her banana-eating kid sidekick. Have we convinced you to watch the film yet?

Sion Sono: Tag (2015)

We're back from our break and we thought it would be a great idea to kick things off with a retrospective on director Sion Sono. You might remember him from our episode on Why Don't You Play In Hell. Yeah, that guy. Anyway, we're starting with his 2015 film Tag, featuring perhaps one of the most surprising openings to be put to film. Seriously, you might want to be sitting down for this one.

Of course, with a filmmaker like this it's worth looking into the themes he plays in and we found an interesting article to be...

That Wasn't The F**king Plan: The Emperor's New Groove (2000)

We close out our month of That Wasn't The F**king Plan with the best movie out of the four we talked about, although that's not saying much: The Emperor's New Groove. It's a strange film in the Disney archive, fraught with all kinds of production drama. We talk a bit about what the original plan was, and then try to figure out where things went wrong. We also note how the film has a great third act and how Kronk probably should have been the star considering how much of the movie he stole from everyone else.


That Wasn't The F**king Plan: The Man Who Killed Don Quixote (2018)

You'd think that a movie about a filmmaker at war with himself that took ten years to make would be more interesting, but here we are. We're discussing Terry Gilliam's The Man Who Killed Don Quixote and let's just say that we had a lot of issues with it. Are we talking about an unwatchable dumpster fire of epic proportions? No. Not even close. It's just a very messy production that shows its seams at every turn and ends up being more boring than bad. If you like early Gilliam you won't find much of him here and that's...

That Wasn't The F**king Plan: Suicide Squad (2016)

This week in our month of "That Wasn't The F&#king Plan" we're talking about the David Ayer film Suicide Squad. The David Ayer film Suicide Squad is what we're talking about this week as we deep dive into films that weren't part of the F&#king Plan." As we dive into movies that didn't turn out the way they were planned, we thought it would be proper to talk about the David Ayer film Suicide Squad.

Okay, I think that hammers home the point that Suicide Squad takes forever to get out of its introduction and...

That Wasn't The F**king Plan: Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker

That wasn't the f**kin plan! This month is all about the screw ups, the garbage fires, the things that didn't turn out the way they were initially intended. We're kicking off this month with the garbage film Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker and diving into all the things that went wrong with it. Turns out there's a lot. Now, before you - a Rise of Skywalker fan - get all huffy, we had one or two things that we liked about the film and we made sure to give those points their due. On the whole, however, we...

Hugo Weaving: The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994)

Happy Thanksgiving! We know it's a bit tough this year around the holidays so we decided to invite you into our homes figuratively to talk about the last film in our Hugo Weaving retrospective: The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. It's a great film filled with amazing performances. There's a lot to love here and we talk about it all. The film does struggle to stick the landing with one character deadnaming another, and guys, that's a fucking bummer. Consider this a bit of a caution as you proceed with both the movie and our discussion of...

Hugo Weaving: Last Ride (2009)

We continue this roller coaster month of Hugo Weaving films with Last Ride, a father and son road trip movie that's as dour as it is excellent. Weaving gives a stellar performance here as Kev, an abusive father with almost no likeable or redeemable qualities. Almost. Somehow, despite an entire movie of being an absolute shit, you still feel bad for the guy and his situation. And Tom Russell is no slouch either, playing the son Chook. With their powers combined, they really make us miserable, and that's a good thing. Is this film a great idea during these...

Hugo Weaving: Mortal Engines (2018)

Unfortunately we've got a bit of a downgrade this week as we talk about Mortal Engines for our month of Hugo Weaving. There are things to like here, the setting being the chief among them. It's an interesting world with some equally interesting lore, and it all looks absolutely gorgeous. Where the film loses us is with everything else. The plot is bland and at times nonsensical, and no one is giving much in the way of their performance. Hugo Weaving has almost nothing to work with here with his first draft villain Valentine, and line reads that should...

Hugo Weaving: V for Vendetta (2005)

Remember, remember! The Fifth of November...for it is the beginning of Hugo Weaving Month here at Behind the Hype. To kick things off we're starting with the flawed V For Vendetta, which boasts great performances from Weaving and others (see: Creedy), while not necessarily aging all that well. It's tough to root for a a character who gaslights and tortures the female protagonist (Evey, played by Natalie Portman) in a movie with already so few women in it. Doesn't help either that the character of Evey is so passive. That said, the Wachowskis wrote the script and you...

Jamie Lee Curtis: Prom Night (1980)

We decided to wrap up our Jamie Lee Curtis retrospective by reviewing the classic horror film Prom Night, the film that has inspired many horror movies since it was released and continues to inspire today. What did we think about it? Well, perhaps we should have watched Terror Train instead? There's some interesting stuff in Prom Night to be sure, but so much of it is either boring or just doesn't work or is just plain confusing. We even brought in our pal Matt Dykes to help us work through this thing and he had similar problems.


Jamie Lee Curtis: Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998)

We continue our Jamie Lee Curtis retrospective with Halloween H20: 20 Years Later, her celebrated return to both the horror genre and this franchise in particular. We have a lot to say about the film as it's quite flawed and makes some odd choices throughout. The body count is low, and the mask changes partway through the film into something you might find at a pop up Halloween store. The film introduces Josh Hartnett and his messy hair baggy clothes combo to the world, and we see a young Joseph Gordon-Levitt get a skate to the face. Everything with Jamie...

Jamie Lee Curtis: True Lies (1994)

We're traveling back in time to 1994 to talk about True Lies, James Cameron's take on Bond starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and our lady of the month Jamie Lee Curtis. It's quite the adventure, filled to the brim with action, humor, and fun performances from everyone involved. The only weak link is Tom Arnold, but he manages to hold on to the harrier jet, as it were.

To assist us in our review of such a classic film we invited our pal Matt Dykes onto the show to give us his perspective.

Jamie Lee Curtis: Knives Out (2019)

October has arrived, and we decided it would be a great idea to do a retrospective on the top scream queen herself - Jamie Lee Curtis. We start the month with her most recent turn in the Rian Johnson film Knives Out. It's a tightly-paced and well-written whodunnit with really fun performances. And even though Jamie Lee Curtis doesn't have as much screen time as we would have liked, she commands every moment and makes this a great way to start our month.

Eve Stewart: Cats (2019)

We made it to the end of our very enlightening Eve Stewart retrospective and to celebrate we're discussing the divisive Tom Hooper spectacle Cats. There's a lot to love in this film, and there's a lot to hate, and really it boils down to how easy it is for you to get past Rebel Wilson and James Corden's abysmal performances. Production design here is stellar - big surprise - but Tom Hooper tries his best to focus on other things. Bad Hooper. Bad. All that said, is the film worth watching? Hit that play button and we'll tell you.<...

Eve Stewart: De-Lovely (2004)

Thank you for your patience! This week we're back to talk about De-Lovely, the next film in our Eve Stewart retrospective. It's about the musical icon Cole Porter, played with zest by Kevin Kline, as he re-lives the best and worst of his life at the behest of the angel Gabriel (Jonathan Pryce). The film features songs written by Cole Porter, all sung by popular modern musicians. But the question remains: is the film any good?

It's...charming, but never quite reaches "great." The real MVP of the film is Eve Stewart and her production design. It's...

Eve Stewart: A Cure For Wellness (2016)

The next film in our Eve Stewart retrospective is the Gore Verbinski horror thriller A Cure For Wellness, starring Dane DeHaan, Mia Goth, and Jason Isaacs. The film is a clunky mess, suffering from logic problems as well as a problematic third act. What saves it for us is Stewart's exceptional production design, which gives the film an atmosphere and mood that makes us want to keep watching despite the significant script problems. We go into all of this and more in the episode, so don't wait another minute to hit that play button on your podcast player of...

Eve Stewart: Nicholas Nickleby (2002)

A new month brings us a new filmmaker and for September we decided to breakdown the lively career of production designer Eve Stewart, starting with 2002's Nicholas Nickleby, starring Charlie Hunnam, Jamie Bell, and Christopher Plummer. It's a film that's exceptionally designed and looks absolutely gorgeous, but that has almost nothing else going for it. The performances are fine, but the tone of the film oscillates so much between farce and prestige period drama that it's hard to really connect to anything the actors are doing. And don't get us started about couches being dragged outside of houses for...

SNL: Superstar (1999)

So I guess this is hello and welcome to this week's episode of Behind the Hype, where we're talking about Superstar, starring the amazing and hilarious Molly Shannon. You want to do what? Now? Well, sure. We should warn you that what follows is a very quotable film that transcends its sketches on SNL and provides some genuine laughs. It may not be as good or considered to be a classic quite like the rest of the movies we discussed this month, but it was very entertaining.

We also discuss the Marry Katherine Gallagher sketches that inspired...

SNL: Wayne's World (1992)

It's Wayne's World, Wayne's World! Party On! Excellent. Wew wew wew weewwwww! In a month of SNL films, it was only a matter of time before we discussed this cultural touchstone of a film and give it the effusive praise that it deserves. And a podcast about one of the best SNL films wouldn't be nearly as awesome without a special guest. We're joined (for the first time since our rebrand as Behind the Hype) by Brok Holliday from Damage Boost. He's the choice of a new generation.

We also discuss some of the SNL shorts that...

SNL: Coneheads (1993)

Greetings Earthlings. We come to you from the planet Remulak to provide mass quantities of discourse around the film known as Coneheads, starring Dan Aykroyd, Jane Curtin, and a myriad of fun SNL cameos. It's a movie that's held up remarkably well, and has in fact gotten better as the years have progressed. There's an earnestness to the absurdity that becomes endearing and it's hard not to fall in love with this picture as you watch it. Can you believe that people didn't care for this movie when it came out? We're a bit surprised, too.


SNL: Blues Brothers (1980)

We're doing something a little bit different from our usual "filmmaker of the month" and taking a deep dive into the Saturday Night Live library of films. To start off we've got our sights set on the absolute best of the bunch, the cream of the crop: The Blues Brothers, featuring stellar performances from Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi, and a whole slew of cameos that will put a smile on your face. Prepare to laugh out loud at the excessive police car damage, and groove along to some exceptional music from some exceptional musicians.

Taika Waititi: Jojo Rabbit (2019)

To finish up our month of Taika Waititi we talk his most recent film Jojo Rabbit. It's certainly a weird one, but we love it all the same. The acting is superb, the sets and costumes are powerful, and the comedy works well to offset the rather dark subject matter. We have a few quibbles here and there, but overall this one is a must see and we can't recommend it highly enough.

We don't really have much of a "Where Have They Been Doing" other than watching more of What We Do in the Shadows. Turns...

Taika Waititi: Hunt for Wilderpeople (2016)

The trajectory continues upward in our month of Taika Waititi as we discuss Hunt for the Wilderpeople. There's a lot to love in this movie and we struggle to come up with any significant complaints. Sam Neill, Julian Dennison, Rachel House, and frickin' Rhys Darby all give stellar performances, and even the director himself pops in for a bit to play perhaps the worst (or best) priest I've ever seen committed to screen. Wilderpeople also continues the trend of showcasing a New Zealand that's more than just Hobbit holes, although the movie makes a clever LOTR reference that nearly...

Taika Waititi: Boy (2010)

Talk about a jump in quality! This week in our Taika Waititi retrospective we discuss Boy, his feature-length follow-up to Eagle vs. Shark set in New Zealand in 1984. It's a story about overcoming grief, growing up, and being there for your family, all told from the point of view of the title character. Taika has a larger role in this film compared to the last and his energetic and comedic touch REALLY work. Could say more, but you should probably just dive into the episode. 

We also talk Team Thor, Team Thor Part 2, and his Flight of t...

Taika Waititi: Eagle vs Shark (2007)

A new month means a new filmmaker, so for this month we're talking Taika. We begin with his feature length debut Eagle Vs. Shark, which at first glance looks like the next Napoleon Dynamite. Instead it's much more down to earth and features characters that are more than just dorky caricatures. Doesn't mean the film is without flaws and we note that were this movie made today it would end quite differently.

We also talk Thor Ragnarok, which provides an interesting look at the filmmaker and gives us a little bit of an idea about what to...

John Singleton: Four Brothers (2005)

We end our John Singleton month with Four Brothers, a movie that never quite finds its tone and never really hits its stride. It's a well-directed movie, and the acting is fun across the board, but the script drags the experience down by playing more to caricature than to character. We also discuss his entry in the Fast series: 2 Fast 2 Furious and why despite his obvious skill as a director, he was not right for the job. Toward the end of the podcast we wrap up our thoughts on the month and what we found interesting about his career...

John Singleton: Shaft (2000)

We take a bit of a turn in our John Singleton retrospective with the film Shaft, not to be confused with Shaft, or the more recent film Shaft. It's a film that features a lot of dirty cops and dirtier criminals and the sum of all these interesting parts leave us feeling uncomfortable. It's a film that features the line "It is my duty to please the booty" along side a frat boy version of Patrick Bateman beating a black man to death and getting away with it. Well, at least until the end of the movie. There's a...

John Singleton: Poetic Justice (1993)

This week in our John Singleton retrospective we're discussing his sophomore film Poetic Justice, starring Janet Jackson and Tupac Shakur. There's a lot here to like. In fact, there's a lot here in general. The film doesn't feel nearly as focused as his previous but despite that feels very unique and very personal. The leads do marvelous work here, especially Tupac, and for those of us who are only familiar with him by name it's enough to make us want to look into the rest of his career.

We also briefly discuss Abduction, starring Taylor Lautner. It's...

John Singleton: Boyz n the Hood (1991)

In light of the current political climate we decided it would be best to educate ourselves and expand our perspectives. To do this we chose director John Singleton as our filmmaker this month, who gave us the intense and illuminating Boyz n the Hood. Everything about the film was astounding and took us out of our comfort zone. It was wild seeing the talent at play in front of the camera and behind it. If you haven't seen this film yet, please do so before listening. Join us in widening our perspective.

Justin Timberlake: Friends with Benefits (2011)

We survived the month of May and now it's time to say goodbye to our man JT. Well, until we watch another one of his movies that is. Anyway, we decided the best way to end the month was by watching the romantic comedy Friends With Benefits.'re thinking of No Strings Attached. This is the other rom-com about two friends deciding to keep their sex casual while ultimately falling in love. It's actually kind of good, until you get to the third act. JT and costar Mila Kunis have chemistry all over the place and it's hard...

Justin Timberlake: In Time (2011)

Our month of May takes a bit of a downturn with the film In Time, which just can't seem to make up its mind what movie it wants to be. There are a few solid hooks throughout, but they never really pan out and never get much deeper than surface level. It's quite the frustrating watch, but the cast is strong and our main man JT continues to impress with his charisma and utter watchability, even if he struggles a little as the leading man. Really, we just wished this movie could have picked a path and stuck to...