Seasons: A Year OF Movies
Seasons: A Year Of Movies is a (mostly) weekly podcast where Emma Ramirez and Jacob Benfell talk about a series of films for each season of the year. The movies can be directly connected (a franchise, a director/writer/whatever’s filmography) or loosely connected (a thematic through-line.) We alternate picking the season’s theme, so the movies will be as varied as our thoughts are. We’ll explore why we watch the movies we do when we do, how context changes our understanding of art, geek out, and occasionally get into fights. Accompany us through the changing times of the year.
Brimming with mystery, Laputa beckons to us! Grace and Emma rediscover the magic of this film and discuss its ecological worldview, condemnation of patriarchal power, and warm kindness. We also get off on several tangents including feminist discourse about mainstream video games and film, insecurity about liking movies that are cute and fun, what makes a movie for kids vs. for adults, and much more. We even manage a summary that is under 10 minutes!
Next movie is My Neighbor Totoro.
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After the whirlwind heist of Cagliostro, Grace and Emma settle in for the ecological science fiction of Nausicaä. They talk over the movie’s approach to political violence and protest, of mankind’s relationship to the natural world, and its complex gender politics.
Next movie is Castle in the Sky.
Emma and Grace talk over the rip-roaring heist adventure that is Miyasaki’s debut. They delve into the movie’s abstract menace, expressive charm, immaculate cinematography, and messy deception of monarchy and class. They also read a reader letter and talk about their plans for the next season.
This adaptation of part of the Ramayama was directed and animated entirely by Nina Paley. We discuss its layered approach to storytelling, the perils of working through stories from other cultures, and how even incredibly old religious stories are personal. Sita Sings the Blues is under creative commons and can be watched for free on YouTube or on sitasingstheblues.com. P.S. by the time we uploaded Emma got a Letterboxd (uofwhales).