The Letterboxd Show 3.08: Patrick Willems

Episode notes

[clip of Evil Dead II plays]

What do you say, huh baby?

Sure...

After all, I’m a man and your woman... At least, the last time I checked. 

Okay...

Bum bum!

[The Letterboxd Show theme music Vampiros Dancoteque by Moniker fades in, plays alone, fades down]

GEMMA Hello and welcome to The Letterboxd Show, a podcast about the movies people love watching from Letterboxd: the social network for people who love watching movies. I’m Gemma. This is Slim...

SLIM Hello! 

GEMMA And each episode, we’re joined by a Letterboxd friend for a chat about their four favorite films. As we head deeper into Q2, we’ve been thinking of ways to get our star-meter ranking up—so this week on the show, we’ve tapped somebody with many more subscribers than us. A huge name on Letterboxd and an even more gargantuan YouTube star. A man devoted to demystifying the art of filmmaking—the one, the only... Patrick H. Willems.

PATRICK Ah, thank you so much for that incredible introduction!

GEMMA Wait, we haven’t finished! We haven’t finished!

PATRICK What?!

SLIM It’s not even finished yet. There’s so much more! That’s only the beginning scroll. Patrick is closing in on 40,000 Letterboxd followers. Over on YouTube, he has 335,000 subs to his video essays about movies where he asks a bunch of what-ifs. What if Noah Baumbach directed Spider-Man? He explains why Marvel movies look kind of ugly. He explores what makes a great car chase and in his series, Patrick Explains, he explains films like Blade II, Alien: Covenant and so much more. And finally, Patrick is here to “Patrick Explains” his four Letterboxd favorites to us. They are: Kiki’s Delivery Service, The Matrix, Evil Dead II and Rushmore. Patrick, welcome to The Letterboxd Show...

PATRICK Thank you so much. It is... an immense pleasure to be here. [Gemma laughs]

GEMMA I feel like that was like a citation for your PhD graduation or something, like... [Gemma laughs] I’ve never known it gets to be giggling quite so hard at the outset. This is going to be fun.

PATRICK It was—I mean at the beginning, like Gemma, your half of the introduction, as you were speaking, I was thinking like “Oh my god, I should be writing this down...” [Gemma & Slim laugh] To use for like a professional bio. Any time I have to—I don’t know, any professional reason like write any description of what I do for a living or who I am, it is—like there are a few things in the world I find harder than that. I mean, just in general, but if I meet a person explaining what I do for a living, I find profoundly difficult.

GEMMA Ah, tell me about it.

PATRICK And so this was all great! And then, Slim, your half of the introduction was also just... you picked some deep-cut videos to reference there.

SLIM You know, you’re the most probably—Jack did the research every week, he did it for this week, too. But you’re probably the most quoted reviewer on this pod for each of the four movies for each guests. We go through and Jack spotlights some great reviews. And you have popped up maybe more than any other reviewer in the history of the show!

PATRICK What?!

SLIM Yeah, that’s real! That is a real fact!

GEMMA That’s a real Jack fact.

PATRICK I can’t wrap my head around that. How did that happened? My reviews are terrible! [Gemma & Slim laugh] They’re just...

GEMMA Are they though? Are they?

PATRICK People on Letterboxd like put in real effort to writing real reviews. And mine are just... just stupid like one-sentence things that I... that I put no—I mean like, I’m not trying to be like, “Oh, those old things? You like that?” I’m not trying to, you know, I’m not blowing smoke up my ass here. I’m just, I’m genuinely shocked that this is the case.

GEMMA You’re sounding like a New Zealander to me, Patrick, straight up. There is too much self-deprecation in that description there, because I’m looking at a couple of your latest, you know, oners. Hooper, 1978: “God stuntmen are so fucking cool.” I mean, what is not banging about that four star review? But especially, especially The Batman, The Batman: “There’s a lot of talk about how this is the sexiest Batman or the most emo Batman. What’s more important is that this is finally a Batman who sits down and looks for clues in a big stack of dusty old files.” [Slim laughs] You know, you’re getting to the point. That’s what’s going on here. You’re getting to the point!

PATRICK Well, thank you. I mean, I guess... despite having just admitted to, you know, not putting a ton of thought and effort into my Letterboxd reviews, which I know there are people—I’ve seen people on Twitter who are just, who do put a lot of thought and effort to there’s who get really mad at the shit-post reviews getting a lot of likes...

GEMMA Ohhh yeah.

PATRICK And so I realized that. But I’m now a psychoanalyzing myself, and I think it’s because my videos that I make on YouTube, that I actually do for a living, just over time have gotten increasingly long and are just so verbose. And I just I can’t rein myself in. Letterboxd, it’s kind of like a counterbalance to that. Like, okay, the opposite here. I’m going do the most like tossed-off, five-word review possible. 

GEMMA Yeah, like it’s possible you get away with shitposting because we also know that you’re a video essayist of some renown. Shall we start? Shall we get started? Shall we dive in?

SLIM Let’s kick things off.

GEMMA Let’s kick things off with the Japanese—the GOAT, the absolute GOAT—Hayao Miyazaki. My god... What a man, what a legend. 

PATRICK What a guy!

GEMMA What an artist. What a guy! And what a reader. He is such a beautiful reader. And so many of his films that he’s made at Studio Ghibli are adapted from other people’s stories. And this, in your top four, is Kiki’s Delivery Service, adapted from the 1985 novel by Eiko Kadono—she is a legend herself. She has published over 200 books.

SLIM Cripes!

PATRICK I have not read the original books... [Gemma laughs]

GEMMA I’ve got people all over my Letterboxd mentions going, “The book was better!” But in a really lovely way. [Gemma laughs] And the thing is, it’s sort of better in a, like, the movie is already amazing. And so the book can only be even better. I’m looking forward to reading it with my son. Anyway, Kiki’s Delivery Service, 1989, a 4.1, average on Letterboxd. Over 5,000 fans have this in their top four, including you Patrick H. Willems. Kiki is a young witch who sits out with her cat Jiji on her mandatory year of independent life. At the tender age of thirteen, she settles in a small flat above a bakery in a seaside town, from where she runs her air courier startup. But she struggles to fit into her new life. And her business suffers when she loses her powers. Let’s get started. Why is this number one for you?

PATRICK So I should say right up front that, you know, with these top four—especially when you guys emailed me about coming on the show—there was that, you know, the momentary impulse, “Do I swap out my top four with different ones to look really cool?” [Slim laughs] I have like, less basic mainstream taste. And I decided, no, I’m going to stick to my guns because these have been—you know, different people use Letterboxd in different ways. And I mostly use it just—I started a Letterboxd account, I think it was maybe 2017 or something like that, 2018, just as a record of what I saw, just so I always could go back to it as a resource for like, oh, what movies I saw, you know, at what time. And when I made the account, these were the four that I put in there. I have never switched these since when I first created my account.

SLIM God bless.

PATRICK And the thing is, these four movies are pretty much, I believe, all movies that I saw for the first time, I think between the ages of like ten and fifteen. And, you know, people have said before that when it comes to like—that’s kind of the foundational time in your life for shaping your taste in art and media and film and stuff like that. And you’re never going to have your mind blown by a movie, the way you will when you’re thirteen, fourteen years old. It kind of took several years for Kiki[’s Delivery Service] to kind of like, rise to the top. It was just one of the ones I loved. And what I found was—and I still love all these movies. But as I got older, Kiki[’s Delivery Service] became the one that kind of resonated with me more and more. And I found that became the movie—if I was like, depressed, I would put on Kiki’s Delivery Service. And this was just the one that resonated with me emotionally more than the others. And then I kind of had—and over time this really, you know, kind of rose up through the ranks. And I think at some point during the time when I—so I spent basically my twenties as like, just doing freelance video work as my main job. I didn’t start making money on YouTube until right before I turned 30.

GEMMA Patrick’s Video Delivery Service. [Slim laughs]

PATRICK Yes! And so I was self-employed all this time and trying to make a career out of the thing that I loved doing. And at some point, I realized—I rewatched Kiki’s Delivery Service and realized, ‘oh wait, wait a second. This is just a movie about taking your passion and turning it into a career and getting burnt out and losing your passion for doing this.’ And I suddenly—it just—at some point I had this realization and it kind of crushed me. I was like, ‘oh my god, this is why I love this movie so much,’ because this is like—as much as, you know, I do not fly on a broom, and I am not a thirteen year old girl, I relate so much to this.

GEMMA It’s the curse of doing what you love. Right?

PATRICK It is! It is! I think I think it is—I’ve said this before, I don’t know, on Twitter or something, but Kiki’s Delivery Service and Spider-Man 2 are the great double-feature about getting burnt out as a freelancer in the big city. [Gemma & Slim laugh] There is no setting in a film that I have ever wanted to live in more than this.

GEMMA Can I ask both of you gentlemen a question? Are you flight dreamers? Does flying feature often in your dreams?

PATRICK I honestly can’t tell you because I never remember my dreams...

GEMMA Aw...

SLIM I thought you were gonna say, “I never dream.” [Gemma laughs] And then I was going to cry. [Slim laughs]

PATRICK Dreaming is for losers!

SLIM “I’m sorry Gemma, I never dream...” I was gonna say, yours is flight. And my visual dopamine is probably Kenny getting shot up in RoboCop on that model Delta city. [Gemma laughs] That’s when my dopamine kicks in big time!

PATRICK If only that was in more movies.

GEMMA Mine is, honestly, mine is the himbo-baker twirling his pans. [Slim & Gemma laugh] Letterboxd reviewers are obsessed with this character. 

PATRICK He’s great. 

GEMMA And you said something about being a freelance creative and a big city. And I was thinking one of the reasons maybe we love and are obsessed with the himbo-baker who twirls his pans, is because part of being a freelancer in a big city is having those daily touchstones of people who don’t change what they do. It’s the kind of, it’s the Jiro Dreams of Sushi element. It’s, you know, it’s the guy who’s been making sushi in the train station for 50 years. It’s the baker on the corner in Brooklyn who’s, you know, he’s the third generation in his family to be doing that. And so there’s a little, there’s an element of that, right?

PATRICK Oh, absolutely. I mean, I’ve got to say, so I have lived in New York City now for... a decade. I moved here in January 2012. And I’m still hoping that I will accumulate like a group of like... neighborhood mainstays like Kiki has. Like, I want a little bakery just like that one. And so... not there yet, but this movie is sort of, you know, what I’m striving to make my life more like.

GEMMA Aw, I love that. Well, it’s interesting. When I was looking at some Letterboxd reviews of this film, just recently, I was like, “Wow—” actually, I’ll be honest, I was looking for mine. And instead of searching my own profile, I went, “Eh, I watched it a couple of days ago, I’ll just go to recent reviews.” And then I had to scroll back through pages and pages and pages of Letterboxd reviews just from the last week alone, and I was like, what is going on here? It’s not like it just landed on Netflix. But it turns out that, two things: The Alamo Drafthouse has been showing it in cinemas. And so Letterboxd at the moment is full of new reviews of people seeing it for the first time in a cinema or seeing it in a cinema for the first time. Either way, that’s just beautiful. And then also, Scavenger Hunt Number 85, April 2022, Day 24: “watch a film with a pet or animal companion doesn’t die.” [Patrick laughs]

SLIM Sara Clements review cracked me up: “Why watch Harry Potter when this exists?” This ranks number five for Miyazaki, seven for Studio Ghibli, our 24th highest rated animated feature. And let’s see, there was another stat... It’s the second most popular film of 1989, behind Dead Poets Society, and third highest rated narrative feature of 1989 behind Dead Poets [Society] and Do the Right Thing.

PATRICK Huh!

SLIM So what a year, 1989.

GEMMA Wow. I love that. I also love—it’s obviously in the great Letterboxd list Warm Hug Cinematic Universe, but my favorite list that it’s on: Movies where a person who isn’t a love interest enters someone’s life and makes it better. I mean, we could talk about Ursula. We could be talking about the, you know, the bakery owner. We could be talking about their lovely old ladies. We could be talking about even Tombo! We could be talking about any number of characters in this film. And that’s what’s so wonderful about it and sort of brings it all back to the idea of, how do you build community when you move away from home?

PATRICK Yeah, I mean, there’s like, kind of the wish fulfillment element there of like, “Wouldn’t it be great if when you were having a rough time, and really struggling, a variety of really nice, wonderful people just came and helped out?” [Gemma laughs] Like, I want all these people in my life. And again, I think it is like, you know, “warm-hug cinema” is a great kind of grouping for it. And, you know, I think a key thing about this movie is like, it’s not—I mean, kind of like most Miyazaki movies, you know, you can say the same for My Neighbor Totoro, they’re not just warm and cuddly the entire time. The characters do really struggle, and go through some rough periods, which then especially for me in Kiki[’s Delivery Service] makes the resolution, like, so cathartic.

GEMMA I mean, she does get attacked by crows, right? [Gemma laughs]

PATRICK She does! You know, I constantly think just like the image of her just riding the broom in the rain at night...

GEMMA Oh man.

PATRICK Just so sad and so cold. [Patrick laughs]

GEMMA And Tombo, who, of course is the subject of one of the most thrilling rescues in cinematic history.

PATRICK Oh, it’s so good. 

GEMMA Oh my god. I mean, not to spoil. But, you know, there’s not a lot you can spoil about Kiki’s Delivery Service. But this is a moment. And when I was rewatching it this time ’round, I was thinking, ‘Is this Kiki and Tombo? Or is this Trinity and Neo in The Matrix Resurrections? [Slim laughs] Am I right?!

PATRICK Yep! I mean, the imagery is... almost identical.

SLIM No better way for us to move into your next movie: The Matrix from 1999. What a year. Is it the greatest year in the history of civilization, 1999? Lily and Lana Wachowski, 4.2 average on Letterboxd. I mean, every one of these movies, really highly rated.

PATRICK I mean, again, I was not pulling out unconventional obscure choices here. [Gemma & Slim laugh] I’m picking—

SLIM This is a safe space! 

PATRICK Yeah, it’s again—I want to be clear, I promise I watch a lot of movies, I watch a wide variety of movies. Uh...

GEMMA There is nothing shameful about having, being one of the 16,000 Letterboxd members to have The Matrix in your four favorites!

PATRICK The Matrix is just—it is the movie I have seen more times than any other movie. It is the movie that made me want to make movies. Again, that is... real—I know, so I mentioned my experience seeing Spirited Away before this, and there was really this period of in the span of like, I think four years, I can trace it back to, there were three experiences I had watching movies that were, you know, completely before and after points in my life, like reconfigured my brain forever. And between the ages of eleven and fourteen, I think. And it was, you know—the last one was Spirited Away, which I already mentioned, the first was The Matrix, second was Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, which if you did a top five on Letterboxd, it would be the fifth one.

GEMMA We won’t, but... It’s good to know. [Slim laughs]

PATRICK I know. I know. I like the four thing.

SLIM Right after DMs...

PATRICK Because everyone does top-five lists. But that was this period, when I was being eleven years old, when The Matrix comes out, is really... I mean, I know that movie rules regardless of, you know, how old you are, where you’re from, whatever. But when you’re eleven it’s—I mean, the cliché I feel like is people saying like, “Oh, it was for this generation what Star Wars was for an earlier one.” But it’s true. Yeah. And especially for me at that age, back before the internet, movie hype cycle really existed. Like, I didn’t know what that movie was actually about. I saw some ads on TV, it was rated R. I didn’t see it in theaters. I just heard it was cool and got good reviews. And then, you know, convinced my parents to—I made the campaign for like, “I know this is rated R, but, but it has really good reviews and I think you should rent it and let me watch it.” [Gemma laughs] And then it was just fully a life-changing experience.

SLIM I think I did the same thing, but it was for the direct-to-video [The] Punisher movie with Dolph Lundgren. [Gemma laughs]

PATRICK Oh!

SLIM That was my R-rated pitch as a kid. Because I remember seeing that movie in the video store, and I was pissed that it was rated R as a kid. Like how could they do this to me? I can’t see this. But I think you’re—I mean, I don’t think, I know you’re right. Because for me when I saw The Matrix, that was my Star Wars moment in theaters. You know, Star Wars moments for me growing up, I was—I don’t remember how old I was, but Star Wars had come and gone so I was seeing the Special Editions in theaters. That was my Star Wars experience. 

PATRICK Those were big for me too.

SLIM Yeah, so the tapes, I had the tapes. I was watching Return of the Jedi all the time. But when you see The Matrix in theaters as a kid, your eyes are opened to a new life ahead of you. Different kinds of cinematic life, action, and the ending, you know, Superman-ish ending. Like “Oh my god, are they gonna make another one after this? Like what’s gonna happen in the next one?!” Your mind is like melting in the theater coming out your ears. It’s mind blowing.

GEMMA “How many more Hugo Weavings can they make?!” [Slim laughs]

PATRICK I mean, if we’re noticing a recurring thing, I seem to like movies where... people, by the end, gain the ability to fly. [Gemma & Slim laugh] This didn’t occur to me until like right now.

GEMMA I was gonna ask, where does Keanu Reeves sit on your himbo ranking? But the answer is in your Letterboxd stats. In your most watched stars, Keanu is at the very top with 46 films watched.

PATRICK Well that is because... it is currently on a hiatus—I do, I host a Keanu Reeves podcast. [Gemma laughs] Yeah, that’s it. We went on a hiatus when the pandemic hit because we would always record in person and then just got busy and haven’t resumed. But I am the co-host of Can’t Get Enough of Keanu, as we call ourselves “the internet’s premier Keanu Reeves podcast.” And we actually—fun fact—we went on a hiatus, the last episode was The Matrix. And then like, the pandemic hit and we all went into quarantine. But so, up through ’99 and then a lot after, but I’ve seen every Keanu movie up to there, including weird ones like his first movie, a weird Canadian knockoff of sort of Flashdance that was released under three different titles in different territories. So basically, that’s why Keanu Reeves is up there so high. So for instance, like if you look under—I forgot you could look under Most Watched actors, but like Josh Hartnett would be up there as well for me, because before we rebooted as a Keanu podcast, it was a show called We Heart Hartnett that explored the entire filmography of Josh Hartnett. [Gemma laughs]

GEMMA I can confirm Josh Hartnett is your sixth most watched actor.

SLIM I didn’t know Josh Hartnett had that many movies to his name. 

GEMMA Oh no, 31!

SLIM I thought he stopped after Hollywood Homicide with Harrison Ford.

PATRICK I mean, I am—as much as I tend to be self-deprecating and stuff, I’m just going to full on say, I probably know more about Josh Hartnett than any person you’ll ever meet. [Slim & Gemma laugh] I am like, I am the authority on this. Do you want me to list his entire filmography in order?

GEMMA I just want you to list three, the three must-sees. The three Josh Hartnett must-sees for Hartnett disbelievers.

PATRICK Okay. Number one is real, it’s the obvious choice. It’s The Virgin Suicides. It is his best performance. He’s incredible. Number two, the one you might not have seen, Oh Lucy! It’s a recent one. It’s mostly a Japanese film. It’s like an all-Japanese cast except for Josh Hartnett. I think it came out in 20...

GEMMA 2017.

PATRICK 2017. 

GEMMA Atsuko Hirayanagi...

PATRICK It’s very good.

GEMMA So he’s the English teacher, I take it?

PATRICK Yes.

GEMMA Who the lonely, chain-smoking, office-lady in Tokyo falls for? Ah, interesting.

PATRICK Yes. And then number three, I’m going to say The Faculty, because that is fully a, like, it’s only his second movie, it’s his star-making performance. I will say, after—so I’ll pivot back to The Matrix in a second. [Gemma laughs] But while we’re on the Josh Hartnett tangent because... I don’t get a lot of opportunities—

GEMMA I mean, everyone’s said everything there is to say about The Matrix almost, so...

PATRICK That’s the thing.

GEMMA By all means, let’s take five on Josh Hartnett.

PATRICK I will say the thing with Josh Hartnett is, so his last American major studio film was 30 Days of Night in 2007.

GEMMA Which was filmed in New Zealand and a whole bunch of my friends worked on and acted in it.

PATRICK Whoa!

GEMMA Oh, yeah. True story.

PATRICK Are they vampires?

GEMMA Yeah, they are. They are New Zealand vampires.

PATRICK That’s so cool. So he doesn’t, he basically just left Hollywood after that and did not do a single movie through a major studio. Again, it was all like obscure indies and movies all over the world. And we’ve been predicting for a long time that a comeback is going to happen. And it’s fully happening now. And I—

GEMMA He’s in Oppenheimer!

PATRICK He’s in Oppenheimer. Well, so he was in Guy Ritchie’s Wrath of Man last year.

GEMMA Ah, yep.

PATRICK Which was a really pleasant surprise for me. He has a bigger role in Guy Ritchie’s new movie, the one with Jason Statham and Aubrey Plaza.

GEMMA Operation Fortune[: Ruse de Guerre]?

PATRICK Yeah. And he’s leaning into comedy there, which he hasn’t done in forever. And now he’s in Oppenheimer, and this comes after he had turned down playing Batman for Nolan, like seventeen years earlier. It’s all coming back around. I’m just like—look, you do a podcast about someone’s whole filmography, you get kind of personally invested in their career. So I’m genuinely happy for this guy that I’ve never met. [Gemma & Slim laugh]

GEMMA This is really exciting. I love it. Maybe in another couple of years, he’ll be your most watched, ahead of Keanu.

SLIM So before we drift away from The Matrix, I do want to call out some stats. So third highest of 1999, third most popular of the entire 1990s, it’s the top Wachowski film, top film of The Matrix series—full disclosure, even though I loved The Matrix 4 [Resurrections].

PATRICK Same. I’m a big [The Matrix] Resurrections fan. 

SLIM Excellent. We’re growing in numbers every day of the week. Number one film by trans directors, the sixth ’90s film in our-million-watched club, and it’s the number 21 sci-fi movie.

PATRICK Out of curiosity, so... it’s the third for ’99? Or is it the most watched for ’99? 

GEMMA Highest-rated.

SLIM Yeah, by rating.

PATRICK I’m just—what’s it behind?

SLIM Fight Club and [The] Iron Giant by rating.

GEMMA Yes! Yeess.

PATRICK Oooh. Okay, that’s good. That’s good. 

SLIM Stopped you in your tracks.

GEMMA I just realized something. There’s a beautiful segue here to be made. From 30 Days of Night—I knew there was something in my brain about this film. It was produced by Sam Raimi. It was produced by Sam Raimi.

PATRICK A Ghosthouse picture.

GEMMA Yeah, and it was one of the reasons it was filmed in New Zealand, was because at that time, Sam and Ted and Rob Tapert had been down here making Xena and Hercules for about a decade. And so they were like, “We know a great place to quickly and easily shoot a movie with a bunch of actors with, you know, mid-Atlantic accents and a crew who know the way we like to work and the practical effects we like to work with.” So yeah, speaking of Sam, that brings us to your four favorites number three. Now, every episode I like to thank our guests for bringing a movie to my attention or giving me the excuse to finally watch it. And we arrive at this week’s “Gemma thanks the guests” moment. Thank you for finally getting me to watch, trademark, “the best movie ever made”. [Slim laughs] It is time to queue up the Panasonic solid-state reel-to-reel as we launch into Evil Dead II...

PATRICK You hadn’t seen Evil Dead II before?

GEMMA I just hadn’t! And this is, we like to say it’s a safe space. And one of the things I love about people who haven’t seen, you know, think about the first time you saw The Matrix. It’s that feeling, right?

PATRICK This is the thing—I want to be fully clear. When I say, “You haven’t seen Evil Dead II before?” I’m not saying it like “Oh, you should be ashamed.” I mean it in the way of, “I’m so excited that you got to see it for the first time...” because it’s the same thing, whenever, you know, someone tells me like they just watched The Matrix for the first time. It’s just like, on the one hand I’m kind of impressed—

SLIM Jealous, almost.

PATRICK That they missed it for all those years. But also, just that first viewing, especially for Evil Dead II is such a great experience. 

GEMMA Oh my god.

PATRICK I’m really excited for you.

GEMMA I’ve got one complaint, Patrick. I was so excited, because every week we go “Okay, what are their four faves? Oh my god, every movie is two or three hours long.” I was like, “Yes! 84 minutes!” Except that it took me three hours to watch this film because I rewound every single scene and watched it. [Slim laughs] Like I didn’t even watch this chronologically, like once and then rewatch it again. I would watch every scene and then go “Wait, what?!” And rewind it. [Gemma laughs] So it was the weirdest first watch I’ve ever had in my life. But honestly, the best. The absolute best. And I would recommend—you can’t do that in a cinema. [Gemma laughs]

SLIM It’s true. 

PATRICK This is a movie that I’ve never actually seen it in a theater. And I really want to see it with a packed audience. This is one, I saw it for the first time I think on VHS. And then like, I watched it a lot, just in high school with groups of friends that I would like to get—especially if people hadn’t seen it before. It used to be like, “Everyone come over on Friday, we’re watching Evil Dead II...” You know, “Buckle up.” And, I mean it—there are just—because it’s not a very plot-heavy movie.

GEMMA No, I wouldn’t say that.

PATRICK It’s fairly episodic.

SLIM It is. It is.

PATRICK Just the episodes there. Whether it’s like the episode with like...

GEMMA The tree...

PATRICK His girlfriend getting possessed and then having to cut her head off. And then like, I mean, an all-timer gag of just he goes to the woodshed to get the chainsaw, and then pulls back the curtain and there’s just an outline of where the chainsaw is supposed to be. And then his headless girlfriend busts in through the door wielding a chainsaw... [Gemma laughs] And then he saws her torso in half, like lengthwise. [Patrick laughs] It is spectacular.

GEMMA There are people who have never seen it and are listening and going “Wait, Gemma thinks this is, trademark, the best movie ever made? What the hell is going on?”

PATRICK And to be clear, this is all very funny as well. [Gemma laughs]

GEMMA Exactly!

SLIM It is! It is.

GEMMA That’s the whole point, right? So this is Sam Raimi, 1987, written by Sam and his friend Scott Spiegel, who I believe also plays one of the knights at the end. He’s the one— it’s got to be him, right? He’s the one who’s—anyway. It’s got a 4.0 average, which I just... I’m so proud of Letterboxd members for that rating. Because it’s the kind of horror movie where you could go, “It’s 2.6, but it’s amazing!” But no, this is genuinely an absolute banger. 4,500 fans. It is Evil Dead II because [The] Evil Dead... it’s essentially a remake, right, of [The] Evil Dead I. Like they kind of do [The] Evil Dead in the first fifteen minutes. There was something to do with reclaiming the rights to the first film so that they could earn income... I don’t know! There’s a whole lot of backstory, you can look up.

PATRICK The continuity is also very loose...

GEMMA It’s insane. [Gemma laughs]

PATRICK Because it’s like, it’s a thing where it’s like, it kind of functions as a remake. But it also does imply that the events of the first movie happened and therefore it does seem... like Ash is the stupidest person alive... [Gemma laughs] If he went through the events of the first movie, and is like, “Well, I have a new girlfriend now, I think I will also take her—”

GEMMA “Bring her to the cabin...” [Gemma laughs]

SLIM There’s even a Letterboxd review that calls that out. Griffin wrote: “Most say this is a reboot of the first one, but I like to think Ash was just dumb enough to bring his new girlfriend to the cabin for round two.” 

PATRICK Wait, whose review is that?

SLIM That was a Griffin on Letterboxd. And Matt—and this speaks to the kind of vibe the whole movie. Matt Lynch: “This is the most excited a movie has ever been to be itself.” And this is one of the most, if not the most Sam Raimi movie you can watch. So for those that haven’t seen it, I feel like most people listening right now know of [The] Evil Dead, but Ash, you know, he goes to a log cabin in the woods, hears a voice recording from an archaeologist who’s recorded himself saying ancient chants from the Book of the Dead, and an evil powers on leash taking over his girlfriend’s body and everything goes wacky from there.

GEMMA Truly whacky.

SLIM But this, me watching this again for—I’ve seen this several times. But this feels like a filmmaker’s movie. Like I think when I saw this as a kid, this was a movie that like, man, they’re having so much fun making this with probably not enough money to make this. But it all looks energetic and full of joy. And then like as a kid, you’re watching us like, “Am I gonna make my own movies after seeing this movie?” That feels like the experience that I had when I saw this when I was younger. Patrick, what about you? Like what did you feel like when you left seeing Evil Dead II for the first time? Have you seen the first [The] Evil Dead beforehand? What was the train of thought like? 

PATRICK I saw this one first. It was this period where, I think I was probably around fourteen... fourteen, fifteen. I think it was—I believe, if I remember back, I think the first Raimi movie I saw was Spider-Man, which is, you know, I was young...

SLIM I still love it. I still love it.

PATRICK And I will admit, as a kid I had not—

GEMMA It’s great! It’s great! What are you gonna say?

PATRICK I was not rushed out to the theater to see For Love of the Game... [Gemma & Slim laugh]

SLIM “From the director of Evil Dead II... For Love of the Game...”

PATRICK He’s got an interesting filmography. I mean, look, Raimi is like one of my favorite directors. You know how when you’re younger, and you’re first getting into movies and starting to keep track of directors, and you don’t fully understand, like, what cinematography is, and all that. But you’re really drawn to really obvious, clear visual choices like, “Oh, that is an aesthetic that is impossible to miss.” And so you put this movie on, and right away, you can be there, fourteen years old going like, “Oh, this is directed... by a director... who is doing things with a camera that I can recognize, because a blind person could see that the camera’s doing things in this movie...”

GEMMA Yeah, Do the Right Thing was that film for me. A hundred percent.

PATRICK Right, absolutely. Like big, strong, really exciting visual choices. And with this, it was just like, I’ve never seen anything quite like it before. In that it was really gory, but it was fun-gore, and it was really funny. And it was all like... hyperkinetic would be a descriptor that I was really, really drawn to in terms of movies as a teen. And so—and also with this, because of the scrappy, low-budget quality of it, you know, they had more of a budget than [The] Evil Dead I, which was really just some friends in the woods. But with this one, because I was like, getting into making movies at that point in my life, this was the kind of thing where, you know, you’ll look at this and be like, “Oh my god... I could do that kind of thing...”

SLIM Exactly, yeah.

PATRICK And then, you know, if you look at the movies that I made in high school, Raimi is maybe the person I ripped off the most... And especially because a lot of people at my school hadn’t seen the Evil Dead II. [Gemma laughs] And so I could steal these things, and be like, “They’re not gonna catch these references, because they haven’t seen this movie!”

GEMMA When you watch films like this, and then you look at the names and the credits and you’re like, oh my god, just the—for a bunch of idiots having fun in the woods... [Gemma laughs] There are some massive names here. I mean, the special-effects makeup, the prosthetics are wild in Evil Dead II. Howard Berger, who went on to an Oscars for his work on [The] Lord of the Rings, notably Gimli, and, you know, various other characters. He’s like, he is GOAT level. The animator is the same guy who worked on Star Wars. You know, there’s just wonderful names all the way through this. Absolutely love it. Speaking of stop-motion, I just have to say, Patrick, thank you for agreeing that the train chase in Wallace and Gromit’s The Wrong Trousers is the perfect action scene.

PATRICK It is. I’m always happy to encounter someone else who agrees with that, because it’s one of the single best pieces of action filmmaking of all time.

GEMMA It truly is. I got to interview their cinematographer a couple of years back.

PATRICK Oh wow!

GEMMA I know! 

PATRICK How long did that take to shoot?

GEMMA Ah, so I mean, it takes forever. And apparently one of the most boring questions you can ask stop-motion animators is, ‘Do you get bored? You must have to have a lot of patience.” [Slim laughs] And having worked with a bunch of them, it’s true, they’re just busy the whole time. It’s not boring. You’re busy. You’re moving and snapping and moving and snapping and you’re manipulating those maquettes and you’re swapping out mouths and you’re swapping out eyeballs and there’s a lot going on. But I wanted to know how they made Feathers McGraw fly through the air... and it had just never occurred to me—have you worked it out, Patrick?

PATRICK My guess—and this is, my experience—so the very first movies that I made, like in middle school, when I was getting to filmmaking, were stop-motion animated movies that I did with Legos. And so thinking back to techniques I used—and again, same thing. I would spend a whole day on a shot and it never got boring. But five hours would fly by, and I had made a person walk across a room. And I’d be like, “Oh, what? It felt like ten minutes!” But was it a thing where they had a hidden rod from the background like poking-in, like elevated—

GEMMA No...

PATRICK Okay, I have no idea then.

GEMMA Sheet of glass.

PATRICK Oh!

GEMMA A sheet of glass and they sliced Feathers McGraw through...

PATRICK That makes sense. 

GEMMA Yeah! It makes sense, right?

PATRICK That makes a lot of sense.

GEMMA Ah, so cool.

PATRICK And I’m only imagining them having to deal with reflections and making sure none of those got in there.

SLIM I’ll be brave and say I have not seen any Wallace and Gromit anything on this show.

PATRICK Well, you know—

GEMMA Ah! I’m so excited for you! 

PATRICK This would take like, what? Fifteen... minutes of your life to watch? [Slim laughs]

GEMMA We can just pause the show right here, and come right back.

PATRICK This is not a feature-length film. Actually, yeah, you could probably watch it in the time it’ll take us to just talk about the next movie. 

GEMMA Yeah. [Gemma laughs]

SLIM I’ll skip the Rushmore conversation. Gemma, you handle Rushmore, I’ll be back...

GEMMA Don’t make me! [Slim laughs] Don’t make me handle Rushmore, I’m relying on you to be kind to Jack’s facts, Jack’s all-time favorite film.

SLIM While we’re talking about your YouTube channel, the big one, this season finale original film coming to Nebula after a long journey. We’re just, I mean, it’s just around the corner. The date hasn’t been revealed, but everyone will find out when it’s when it’s coming out. 

PATRICK Yeah...

SLIM Because in the video, oops, I Accidentally Made a Feature Film, you talk about how your, you know, what you learned across the process, a lot of which was, “Make a spreadsheet dummy, it’ll help out.” [Gemma laughs] Which I absolutely agree with in just life in general, make a spreadsheet for anything. But in that process for this feature film, did that make you more excited to create a feature? Or did you just learn an s-ton of things along the way that’ll help you in the long run when creating those things?

PATRICK It actually made me more excited because—and I realized that if people are listening to this episode, unfamiliar with the stuff that I do, this will probably make—this probably seems very confusing. I’ll try to explain it in like, a few sentences. 

GEMMA One minute, one minute.

PATRICK Oh, I’ll do it in less than a minute.

SLIM I’ll go watch Wallace and Gromit. [Gemma laughs]

PATRICK Yeah, exactly. So in the video essays about movies that I make on YouTube, at the beginning of 2020, my team and I decided as kind of like a fun experiment, because we already tended to have these little narrative-framing devices in the videos, because if I if I don’t like insert filmmaking stuff, and like treat them kind of like their own short films, I tend to get very bored with the process. It’s like, you know, writing an essay isn’t enough. I have to create a narrative reason for like, why am I exploring this topic in this video? So we decided to try to, like, treat a year of videos as a season of television and have an overarching storyline through the whole thing. And we did it. The audience got on board with it, and it did well. And then the plan was always, “and then we’ll do a season finale that’ll just be like a short film, that’ll wrap it all up!” And then we finally got to that point, and we jumped into production and had to be shooting really, really fast, before a script was even totally finished. And anyway, it just kind of ballooned and went from what I thought was going to be a 25-minute-long movie to a 90-minute-long movie. And we are pretty far into post-production. And it’s nearly done. And it started—I’ve finally gotten over the hump of like, now, it feels like a real thing. It’s not just, you know, there’s a long period where you’re just like, “Oh, god is this—did I just make a huge mistake? Is this all just a bunch of bullshit that I just wasted my time on?” And I’m like, especially having like an actual colorist work on it—and shout out to Ryan Alva, my very talented colorist—when he sends me the colored sequences, I’m like, “Oh, this looks good.” [Slim laughs] So he took my—because I directed and am the cinematographer and I edited it and all this stuff. And so he made my hastily, my hasty unprofessional cinematography look way better than it should be. But yeah, so as far as going to another feature, because I never anticipated this being my feature-directing debut. This is a feature film that basically requires watching a year and a half worth of YouTube videos to understand the story. [Gemma laughs] I’m not making this for like, the festival crowd. You know what, I’m making this for the fans, not the critics. [Gemma & Slim laugh] But basically, because if you had given me the same budget, we had a small budget. And said, “Go make a feature film.” I would have made something with like, three characters set in a tiny location and just made it very simple. Because we didn’t realize the scale of it, it is so much more complicated than that. If I could get a bit more money and make something a bit less complicated, no problem at all! Easy. So yeah, I’m actually excited to—for whatever the next thing is.

SLIM The next thing will be you reviewing your own movie on Letterboxd. Now you can check that off your list. [Gemma laughs]

PATRICK  Is there a way to like... mute a movie on Letterboxd, so I never have to see what anyone says about it? Because I don’t read the comments on my videos. I quit reading the comments like four years ago.

GEMMA So good for your mental health.

PATRICK Yeah, I think it was the first time I made a video about Star Wars, I realized, “Oh, I can’t look at these...”

GEMMA Yeah...

PATRICK “This this will kill me.”

GEMMA Who are your favorite YouTube video essayists or indeed any platform video essayist?

PATRICK I feel terrible about this. This is—suddenly my phone blew up and I was like, “What is going on?” And apparently Justin Lin just issued a statement saying he is dropping out as director of—

SLIM No!

PATRICK Of the tenth Fast and Furious movie, which has already started shooting. And... I’m sorry...

GEMMA This is happening in real time?

PATRICK This is happening in real time. I didn’t even read the whole statement, I only read the first sentence of it.

SLIM There’s nothing in this statement. There’s nothing in this statement from Justin. “With the support of Universal, I’ve made the difficult decision to step back as the director of Fast X, while remaining on the project as producer.” Something is cooking. Something is cooking.

PATRICK I’m...

SLIM What has Vin done now? [Gemma laughs]

PATRICK I’m so sorry that I just ruined this episode. [Slim laughs] It is...

SLIM Patrick is stunned at the breaking news, as of recording. Can we get Dwayne back in the fold? Is that what we need, Patrick? Do we need Seven Bucks Productions to come in? Maybe get one of Dwayne’s buddies to finish directing. Who is the director of Red—

PATRICK Red Notice? You mean Rawson Marshall Thurber?

SLIM Can we get Thurber in the director’s chair?

PATRICK No! Don’t even say that! Don’t even—like nothing would bum me out more. This is... Oh god. I’m like... I’m in a weird state right now.

SLIM It’s time for the Thurber fever to kick in. 

PATRICK Oh no...

SLIM But we have to power on.

PATRICK We have to.

SLIM We have to power on—

PATRICK We’re not going to talk about Fast X. I’m going to have to... [Slim laughs] put that aside and focus on the matter at hand, despite...

SLIM Soul crushing news that you just experienced.

PATRICK There’s a tenseness inside me right now. I’m just like...

GEMMA Yeah, I was gonna say, what does the Fast [& Furious] franchise mean to you?

PATRICK It is, in terms of current movie franchises... you know, Mission: Impossible is my number one, with a bullet. Like absolutely the franchise I care the most about and I just think is the best.

GEMMA See, Slim, I told you he was a friend of yours.

SLIM True friend indeed.

PATRICK I’m glad this is—it’s a safe space and I’m glad you understand. And then Fast and Furious is I think number two in terms of currently ongoing franchises that I care deeply about. It doesn’t have the, you know, Mission: Impossible, those are like masterpieces. But I care so deeply about the Fast and Furious movies.

SLIM We will power on, we’re a family—we’re a family on this pod together the three of us. We’re here to support each other during this news. And what better way to support each other as friends forever than talking about Rushmore by Wes Anderson? [Gemma & Slim laugh]

GEMMA The ultimate film about friendship across the generations... [Slim laughs] And the class divide.

SLIM 3.9 average on Letterboxd. 3.7[K] fans. This is a formative movie for what I would imagine many young men like ourselves. Gemma maybe not so much, we’ll find out in mere moments, Gemma’s true feelings on Rushmore.

GEMMA Well just count the female characters and we’ll start there. [Slim laughs]

SLIM She’s going in hard right away! [Gemma laughs] 

GEMMA I’m sorry, Jack! I’m sorry, Jack! I’m sorry, Jack! 

SLIM Yeah, Jack’s number one—one of Jack’s all-time favorites, Jack’s facts, huge piece of this show. He was also very trepidations about this discussion. But, when a beautiful first-grade teacher arrives at a prep school she soon attracts the attention of an ambitious teenager named Max who quickly falls in love with her. Max turns to the father of two of his classmates for advice on how to woo the teacher. However, the situation soon gets complicated—not unlike that of Fast X—when Max’s new friend becomes involved with her, setting the new pals against one another in a war for her attention.

GEMMA Wow, see there’s a—once again, with the weird synopsis. All I would say is... “A high schooler who lost his mum at seven and is on a scholarship to a fancy school but comes from the wrong side of the tracks, is struggling with his life, his feelings and what it means to grow up and become a man in the world.” That is it. That is the Rushmore synopsis for me.

SLIM That’s a pretty good synopsis.

GEMMA Thanks!

PATRICK That is a thing it’s about. Yeah! [Slim & Gemma laugh]

SLIM I might have to—I might have said 3.7 fans, there’s 3.7 thousand fans for Rushmore. So thank you, Jack, for correcting me.

PATRICK There was a seventh of a person. [Gemma & Slim laugh] Who was just really into Rushmore.

GEMMA Can I just read off a few of the Letterboxd lists this is on and then Patrick, we want to hear why this isn’t your top four. Sad Bastard and Loser Cinema. [Patrick laughs] movies where the Romantic Moment™ features profound chasteness instead of making out, SadWhitePeople™ Movies. [Gemma laughs] I like that. And probably the one that’s sort of most relevant to the theme: “i’m not a real person yet” .

SLIM Were you a real person yet, Patrick, when you first saw Rushmore? 

PATRICK No, because I first saw this movie when I was like ten. And I didn’t understand it at all. This was one where when it came out on video, when it was a new release, my parents rented it, my family watched it, despite it being rated R. It’s a mild R. And, and I—this is not a movie for a ten year old. It’s not like like, very inappropriate. It’s just like, you don’t really get it. And then I watched it again, like several years later, after I, you know, realized I liked Wes Anderson. And yeah, and so it wasn’t until watching it a bit later, like as a teen and then when I was in college, that I really—that it started like actually resonating with me. And a thing that—so something that I find fascinating is that, with Wes Anderson, is that for a director who is very popular and very celebrated and has like a whole filmography that’s pretty celebrated, there’s no real consensus on like, what is his best movie. Anytime I talk to anyone—unless they just viscerally hate Wes Anderson in general—every person seems to have a wildly different favorite Wes Anderson movie.

GEMMA And you know which one mine is, because you know I love stop-motion, so...

PATRICK Fantastic Mr. Fox?

GEMMA Yeah, definitely. Definitely, that’s just ahead of [Isle of] Dogs. 

PATRICK Yeah. 

GEMMA What’s yours, Slim? What’s your favorite Wes?

SLIM I have to marinate on that first. I can’t—I’m spur of the moment.

GEMMA Right when you finish watching Wallace and Gromit. [Slim & Gemma laugh] 

SLIM Wallace and Gromit is my favorite Wes Anderson movie! [Slim & Gemma laughs]

GEMMA The accuracy.

PATRICK There are definite similarities, you know, other than just the stop-motion, but you look at the sort of precision of Wallace and Gromit’s home and like the aesthetics and Wallace’s uniform and everything. I think that definitely fits in with the kind of, you know, Wes Anderson kind of world. But I just, I’m fascinated by how one person’s favorite Wes Anderson movie is like the next person’s least favorite.

GEMMA Oh, tell me about it. Oh, what’s the one with the tennis playing siblings? My god.

PATRICK The Royal Tenenbaums.

GEMMA I had a great nap during that film. Great nap. [Slim laughs] Epic sleeps.

SLIM Probably Fantastic. Mr. Fox might be my favorite Wes Anderson. Wes Anderson is definitely a vibe. And I’m not sure if he’s my vibe, so to speak. You have to be in a certain kind of Wes mood to watch his films. You know, they’re very Wes and I don’t mean that as like a negative.

PATRICK And they’ve only gotten more Wes as they go on. And I will say, as much as I—to varying extents, I like pretty much all his movies. And you know, and if you look at them over—even like Bottle Rocket, it’s immediately a Wes Anderson movie, right from the beginning. So many of the things that defined his movies are there from the start. But obviously as his movies went on, and he got more control and bigger budgets and everything, the movies became like more and more kind of dollhouse-like. And a thing that I—which is not a criticism at all. The Grand Budapest Hotel is maybe my second-favorite of his movies and that is a movie about meticulous little dollhouse worlds. That is maybe like the farthest from the real world than any of his—other than the animated ones—that any of his movies are. And also, his movies became more, his live-action movies became more and more like animated movies as they went on. And there’s a thing in Rushmore that I really, really like, the way that it is clearly a Wes Anderson movie, it has the Wes Anderson aesthetic and visual style and all of that, but it does feel a little bit more like it’s in our kind of tangible world than most of his other movies. I like having that one foot that is kind of in the real world, that does have more real locations and everything. And just with this movie, it is the idea especially with like this teenage character, who basically doesn’t really know how to deal with his own shit. And so his solution for everything is just to create projects and work and put on plays and stuff like that. And try to use his projects to hopefully kind of like, manipulate the world into being what he wants it to be.

GEMMA I wouldn’t know anything about that. I wouldn’t know anything about failing subjects because I was too busy with extracurriculars my entire life, not just my entire high school life. My entire life. I wouldn’t know anything about that, Patrick. Let’s not turn this into a therapy session. [Slim laughs] 

PATRICK I wouldn’t want to do that at all!

GEMMA I am not Max, I am not Max. I do not hate this movie because I’m Max.

PATRICK And this is kind of my thing. [Gemma laughs] I see more of myself in Max Fischer than I would like, even though I have never done anything as... just as fucked up as the various things he does this movie. 

SLIM Right, right.

PATRICK But there’s a lot about him that I do relate to. And also it’s just like—so there’s that for like sort of personal connection. But it’s just, any time that I might work on some like filmmaking project and just need to get like energized and inspired, I’ll just put on the yearbook montage from the beginning of Rushmore, just to get in the mood of like, “Yeah, I want to go like shoot a scene,” or whatever. It just ticks so many boxes for me. It’s maybe my favorite Bill Murray performance ever.

GEMMA Oh my god, there’s this Letterboxd review from Hunter Morris that just says: “I would pay so much money to see any of Max’s plays in their entirety.”

PATRICK Yep. Really? When we’re talking about this movie, I should have just said right up front, this is on my top four for the line.“Oh, are they?”

[clip of Rushmore plays]

I like your nurse’s uniform, guy.

These are OR scrubs.

Oh, are they?

SLIM Absolutely. [Slim & Gemma laugh]

PATRICK Just one of the best jokes ever put in a movie.

GEMMA Also, can you imagine, knowing that Owen Wilson co-wrote the script with Wes Anderson. And that Max is saying it to Owen’s brother, you’re like, “Owen wrote that line.” That is such a brother-to-brother line. That is just Owen owning his baby brother right there.

SLIM We talked about how this is a little bit different, you know, compared to the other Wes Anderson movies. I think it’s very muted compared to them. But do you ever go back to some of your earlier videos over the years? Like for me, I’ve been podcasting for a long time, I never want to go back to podcasts that I recorded like ten years ago, five years ago. What about you? How do you feel about looking back on some of your earlier work?

PATRICK Ah... I don’t love it. In general—it’s funny I was on, there was another podcast that I was a guest on recently. And they were like talking about my, in quotes, “career” or whatever. I have not listened to my episode of that show.

SLIM Will you listen to this one? [Gemma laughs]

PATRICK I might, I might. I was just like, I was convinced—yeah, because I know I’ve done an awesome job on this one.

SLIM Nailed it.

PATRICK Especially when I just derailed the whole thing to just stammer about like, “What is going on with the Fast and Furious?” [Slim laughs] But no, I was just like, for some reason I was convinced that I was like, “Oh no, I tanked my Blank Check episode.” And all my friends listened to it and was like, “No it was fine. It was perfectly good.” I was like, I don’t know why, I think I messed it up.

GEMMA You’re gonna need to listen back to this to find the moment where Slim drops in that moment from High Fidelity about Evil Dead II.

PATRICK Can we—okay. Actually, now that you mentioned that, I have a bone to pick with High Fidelity. [Gemma laughs]

GEMMA Who doesn’t have a bone to pick with High Fidelity?

PATRICK I actually, I really liked that movie. 

SLIM But... 

PATRICK So have you have either of you read the book?

GEMMA Yes. I’ve read most of Nick’s books. 

PATRICK Okay. Nick—are you on a first-name basis? [Slim laughs]

GEMMA Yeah, we totally are. Yep. [Gemma laughs] My good friend, Nick. Go for it. Say whatever you like about my good friend—no, jokes.

PATRICK Well, so despite transplanting it from, you know, from London to Chicago, it’s a pretty faithful adaptation. The scene, the Evil Dead II scene where Jack Black is talking about how the soundtrack kicks ass and all these things, it’s the same dialogue verbatim from the book. But in the book, he’s talking about Reservoir Dogs, which has a famously great soundtrack. Evil Dead II, it’s in my top four movies... I can’t remember the soundtrack! Why did they use the same dialogue but have it be about Evil Dead II? I love that he’s talking about Evil Dead II, but...

GEMMA It’s just some weird piano droning, right? 

PATRICK Yeah!

GEMMA It’s not Reservoir—oh my god, it’s not like they’re banging—

PATRICK Just change the line!

GEMMA Yeah, Karen Rachman who did a lot of Tarantino’s soundtracks is an incredible music clearance. Genius. I agree. And that is a weird—yeah, I’d forgotten about that.

PATRICK You mentioned High Fidelity, I just had to bring up—it’s like two lines of dialogue that have just always seemed odd to me. Anyway, we’re rewinding... Yeah, I’m sure this is gonna be a great episode. I generally, I don’t like rewatching my old videos, especially because like, I only started making—I had never made a video essay until the end of 2016. And I think it took me over a year to get to a point where I think my delivery sounded natural, and I was okay on camera. And I think everything before that seems really stiff. And I wasn’t enunciating well enough. And so those anytime I see someone share a video I made in 2017, I’m always like, “Oh, god, no, please, don’t please don’t watch that...” [Gemma & Slim laugh] I was not good in that. And no, usually when a video is done, I just immediately move on. That said, about a week ago, for some reason at like midnight, I decided to watch a video I’d made a year ago, it popped up. My own video got recommended to me on YouTube and I watched a full video I made a year ago, and I was like, ‘Yeah, it’s actually not bad. Patrick, you did an okay job with that one. Despite the typos in the text on screen that I will hate myself for forever.’

GEMMA Well, we are going to wrap this up by revisiting a review you wrote a year ago, almost to the day. And this is because on the occasion of talking to the Letterboxd member who has had the most reviews read aloud on The Letterboxd Show, Jack from Jack’s facts, has shared with us Jack’s favorite Patrick review we haven’t quoted yet. Here it is. Rear Window, 1954, rewatched by Patrick H. Willems, April 15 2021: “The universal dilemma: what if the most beautiful person in the world wants to sleep with you, but you really just want to spy on your neighbors?” 

PATRICK Honestly, I feel good about that one. [Slim & Gemma laugh]

[The Letterboxd Show theme music Vampiros Dancoteque by Moniker fades in, plays alone, fades down]

SLIM Thanks for listening to The Letterboxd Show and thanks to Patrick Willems for bringing his followers to us. If you are new to The Letterboxd Show thanks to Patrick’s influence, please think about leaving us a nice rating, or even a review so that people can discover us and therefore more people can discover more movies. You can follow Patrick, Gemma, myself and our HQ page on Letterboxd using the links in our episode notes. There’s also a link for the list of the films discussed in this episode.

GEMMA Also, be sure to queue up our other podcast Weekend Watchlist—new episodes drop Thursdays with Mitchell, Mia and Slim. Thanks to our crew, Moniker for the theme music ‘Vampiros Dancoteque’, Jack for the facts, our booker Linda Moulton for looking after I guests, and Sophie Shin for the episode transcript. And to you, for listening. The Letterboxd Show is a Tapedeck production. I guess, you’ve just got to find something you love to do and then do it for the rest of your life. For me, it’s The Letterboxd Show... [Slim laughs]

[clip of High Fidelity plays]

Just come on, what would it mean to you that sentence? I haven’t seen Evil Dead II yet?

Well, to me, it would mean that you’re a liar. You’ve seen it twice. Once with Laura. Oops. And once with me and Dick, remember? We had that conversation about the guy making Beretta shotgun ammo off screen in the fourteenth century.

Right, but let’s just say that I hadn’t seen it. And I said to you, I haven’t seen Evil Dead II yet. What would you think? I think that you’re a cinematic idiot. And I feel sorry for him. 

Alright. 

But from that one sentence, would you think that I was going to see it? 

I’m sorry, Rob. I’m struggling here. You’re asking me what would I think if you told me you hadn’t seen a film that you have already seen? What am I supposed to say? 

Listen to me if, I said to you, I haven’t seen Evil Dead II yet—

Yes.

Would you get the impression that I really wanted to see it? 

Oh, well, you couldn’t have been desperate to see it. Otherwise, you’d have already gone.

Right. I’m not going to see that movie. 

But the word yet... Yeah, you know what? I get the impression that you wanted to see it. Otherwise, you’d have said you didn’t want to go. 

But in your opinion, would I definitely go?

How the fuck am I supposed to know? Probably!

Why? 

Because it’s a brilliant film. It’s so funny and violent and the soundtrack kicks fucking ass. I never thought I’d say this but can I go work now?

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