The boys are back, covering one of the most iconic films of their early friendship, and a 90’s classic, Leon- The Professional. In their classic format, J. Blake and Dion Baia talk about the US cut verse the International Cut, the provocative storyline, and the auteur-styling. So sit back, crack open a cold one as the fellas take you back in an all new episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
The boys are back for their monumental anniversary podcast, and boy is it a whopper! J. Blake and Dion Baia are going way down the alley and discussing a classic near and dear to their hearts, The Maltese Falcon, from 1941.
As usual, they go all-out unpacking this massive topic, first going over Dashiell Hammett‘s groundbreaking and game-changing career. They hit the rise of the ‘gentlemen detective‘ of the 1930s, and how this 1941 film influenced and begot us film noir and the hard-boiled detective. It’s a jammed pack, lengthy podcast- their longest to date… (and boy does Dion talk a lot!). But this topic is right in their wheelhouse, and it’s their anniversary. Blake and Dion also talk about their new upcoming books. So kick back your heels, get comfortable and grab your favorite drink, cause the fellas are analyzing one of the their favorite topics, on an all new anniversary edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers, which is now is also on Patreon!!
Welcome back to another exciting edition of the Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! Dion Baia and J. Blake are doing a double feature this week, covering a forgotten but classic franchise, F/X from 1986 and FX2 from 1991, both starring Bryan Brown and Brian Dennehy. The boys discuss the many legendary character actors who fill out both movies, and amazing premise that has become a common theme on the podcast, the fascination movie audiences had/have with practical SFXs—specifically makeup FXs; and the terrific rollercoaster rides these films take us on. So come reminisce about 2 forgotten gems on another enthralling installment of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
Welcome back to a proper martial arts edition of Kung Fu February on Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! Dion & Blake are back and taking on a cult classic, featuring the man, the myth, the legend, Steven Seagal, in his 1990 iconic film, Marked For Death!
The boys unpack the 3rd film in Steven Seagal‘s catalog, discussing his backstory and more importantly, they discuss the martial art he practices, Aikido and it’s history, and Dion‘s connection to it. They then take the way-back machine way down the alley to 1990, and analyse the movie/marital arts scene at the time, and how bad-ass Seagal was. They lay out the argument of why we need a director’s cut of this film, on this all new proper Aikido installment of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
Welcome back to another exciting edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! This week J. Blake and Dion Baia are back, and opening up the Spring/Summer season up with a classic, a debut [of sorts] from a director who went on to become sleepover royalty. The boys are tackling John Carpenter‘s thriller, Assault on Precinct 13, from 1976!
Dion and Blake discuss their history with this film and the horrifying and controversial aspects it presents, and unpack the various influences on John Carpenter that helped him
Welcome back to an all-new edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! This week Dion Baia and J. Blake are covering a modern classic–a film they predict will one day be a ‘sleepover‘ staple for generations of future movie-loving kids. The guys are taking their sleepover time machine back to 2014 to tackle the Keanu Reeves action orgasm, John Wick!
The boys jump right in, discussing other genre-centric movies that led up to John Wick, and the duality of the comic book elements laced within, alongside the super real and authentic techniques and action, that made this movie so captivating and engaging. They also unpack the brutality within, and how it plays to the viewers’ heartstrings, giving the film’s hero, John Wick, license to do just about anything. So make sure you do some stretching beforehand because Blake and Dion are gonna be getting physical in this all-new episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
Welcome back to another edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! This week J. Blake and Dion Baia are celebrating their 4th anniversary of the SNMS Podcast! Keeping with the past anniversary episode themes, the boys have decided to cover the Alec Baldwin-helmed big screen production of The Shadow, from 1994!
Dion and Blake attempt to dissect this long-established property by going back to its roots in the Walter B. Gibson-penned pulp novels, trying to coherently lay out the different timelines of The Shadow from the radio, in print, and on both the large and small screens. They unpack the elaborate history of the man in black, drawing links to what was actually going on in the world during the early 20th century, and how the character went on to influence one of the most famous superheroes ever created. It’s another educational, hilarious and exciting anniversary-installment of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
Welcome again to an all new installment of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! This week Dion Baia and J. Blake are exploring a film that turns 50 this year, a classic and a pioneer in the genre, the Steve McQueen police-thriller, Bullitt, from 1968!
Blake and Dion go way down the alley- dissecting the history of this ground-breaking movie and take a deep-dive into the man, the myth, the legend, Steve McQueen. They lay out his upbringing to give context to the legendary career and short life he led. The boys then utilize the original 1963 source novel, Mute Witness, to flesh out the background of the film. They unpack all the elements like the car chase, McQueen’s style, Peter Yates’ direction, and the Lalo Schrifrin score – all of which turned this movie into the classic it became. And the fellas reveal Dion’s surprise as well! So, grab your Ford Mustang Fastbacks, cause the boys are heading back to San Francisco on an all new episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
Here’s an article on the amazing story of the lost Ford Bullitt Mustang found in 2017 in a Mexican junkyard (the car that did a lot of the jumping, stunts, and took most of the abuse) thought to be lost forever!
Welcome back to another edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! This week J. Blake and Dion Baia are covering a recent classic (well recent for them), a movie that was a breakout hit and jump-started an entire sub-genre. The boys are headed to Paris, as they tackle the Liam Neeson thriller, Taken, from 2008.
Dion and Blake jump right in, laying out the plot and discuss the reasons they love this film. They analyse other movies that inhabit this genre and praise this tight and fast-moving script, and speculate as to why an otherwise straight-forward, run-of-the-mill action movie starring an actor in his mid-50’s can be such a great, extremely popular action-adventure! So grab your foreign currency, burner phones, and plane tickets, because the boys have 96 hours to straighten everything out on another episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
And of course, we need to thank this episode’s sponsor mackweldon.com! Keep an ear out for the advertisement in this episode for a promo code to save money on your first order!
Welcome back to another all new episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! This week J. Blake and Dion Baia go back to their film school roots and discuss a movie that literally changed their lives back in the 1990s. This is a very special installment of the podcast for them, as they chat about the #1 voted Independent movie of all time, Quentin Tarantino‘s classic Reservoir Dogs, from 1992.
As stated above, this is a very significant film for Dion and Blake– a walk down memory lane and a nostalgic talk, that in many ways is very different to the other casts they’ve done up until now. Almost becoming a ‘comic-book origins’ edition, the lads have an extensive talk about their formative years, their meeting, and the influences Tarantino‘s work had on them as teenagers; which led them to want to go to film school and make movies at a time when the Independent boom was in full swing within Hollywood. The boys discuss at length what it was like to be in film school in that era and the influence an auteur like Quentin Tarantino had on them and others, attempting to give a context, while lovingly looking back at their shared tastes of then versus now. All this weaves into talking about this highly influential director, his particular style, and this work, Reservoir Dogs. Blake and Dion chat about the origins of this script, and how it quickly went from being a very low budget, black and white movie and quickly blossoming into the iconic film we know today. They discuss the awesome cast and the potential “what-if’s?” that were in play, as well as reactions the film had once released. They also attempt to analyze the violence and gore within the movie and within one scene in particular, which may seem tame today but caused quite a stir when it originally came out. So what other heist films does this film pay homage, or ‘borrow’ from? How important was the casting in this film? How influential was this film, not only to the SNMS boys but to cinema fans, the industry and that entire decade overall? How key is the soundtrack to this and other Tarantino films? And what the heck is up with the director’s obsession with the N-word? Well buckle yourself in, because the boys are taking on a seminal work in one of the most unique installments of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers to date!
Welcome once again to another all new installment of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! They boys were up really, really late the other night looking through their collection of old VHS tapes, deep down in the SNMS archive, and came across something that made them stop in their tracks. J. Blake and Dion Baia decided to call an audible, taking a left turn with the podcast to break new ground and cover a subject to that helped shape their preteen years- something they both consider not only one of the best animated series of all time but one of the best television shows of all time, Batman: The Animated Series, which debuted September 5, 1992.
The boys realize that a task like this would produce a truly epic podcast, so for their purposes here they’ve picked two stories that are not only some of their favorites episodes, but also exemplify the ‘lightning in a bottle’ that was captured when this show came together, entitled Heart of Ice and Feat of Clay, Parts 1 & 2. Dion and Blake start off by remembering back in the day when kids would hang out with other kids just to play with those kid’s toys, and also Blake‘s recent trip to England and what he did on Halloween day, over across the pond. Then they get into Batman and set up the various factors brought together to bring to the small screen not only a unique take on the Dark Knight character, but also how this union of the minds brought us one of the most unique cartoons in animation history. They discuss the influences as well as the tone of the show, and particularly in these two episodes, the fact that even though these were installments in a children’s cartoon show, we have two stories that end up setting the bar, changing and even inventing some of the cannon for the entire franchise as it moves forward. So, how about the amazing performances given not only in these two stories, but throughout the entire series by the legendary actors brought in to voice the various characters in the show? Why does the animation in Heart of Ice and Feat of Clay in particular stand out from the rest of the series? How do these episodes showcase what is to come in this groundbreaking series? Well these are just some of the topics the fellas get through on this all new, and fun edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
As discussed in this episode, take a look that this rare and completely awesome limited-run vinyl record box set of the score to some of the best installments of Batman:The Animated Series, courtesy of Mondo.
Hello everyone, welcome back to another exciting and enthralling edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! This week J. Blake and Dion Baia are celebrating an epic milestone with an epic podcast! It’s SNMS’ two year anniversary and the boys have picked a film near and dear to their hearts, one that has gained a sizable cult following over the 25 years since it’s original release. This week they take on the classic action/adventure, The Rocketeer, from 1991.
Dion and Blake kick off the podcast with a pseudo-State of the Union, reflecting on the past year. They chat about the movies they’ve covered, the growing community of listeners and those who also frequent their Facebook page, and how humbling it has been for them. Then they seque into this epic anniversary cast, and setup the backstory of the Rocketeer. They discuss the creator Dave Stevens‘ journey getting character from comic to screen, and Disney‘s eventual involvement and the sparring that occurred between him and the company (aka the then Chairman and CEO Michael Eisner) over keeping the property as pure as possible with the transition to screen. The boys again explain the era of the 1980’s and how hard it really was to get a comic book movie done, let alone a character from an independent publisher. They also chat about the era the movie is set within, the pre-war 1930’s and the beautiful art movement that permeated almost every medium, Art Deco. Blake and Dion also discuss the genius of creator Dave Stevens, and all the ‘historical fiction’ he injected into his original content. The guys go through the various details of the historical and famous figures involved in the material, leading them to another topic they have been waiting almost two years to talk about, and one of the things that they love about this film, the homage to the great B-movie actor Rondo Hatton. They explain his history, the illness that affected his physical appearance and how by the help of Rick Baker, Rondo was able to make a posthumous appearance in one more Hollywood film, albeit 49 years later (if you don’t count Scooby-Doo!). Well there’s a lot to unpack on this week’s episode and it’s admittedly a long one, but the boys have a lot to celebrate about: a fabulous film that the fans love, and lament about a growing audience that really blows the boy’s minds. So please come on down and have a listen to another hilarious, informative and engaging episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
*Dion accidently named the Chicago-era gangster Hymie Weiss, when intending to instead reference Murder Inc. co-founder Meyer Lansky.
Quickly mentioned in the podcast but completely forgotten to be brought up again before the conclusion and ripped from the headlines, check out this news story about a modern ‘Rocket man‘, that shows fiction becoming reality!
Check out the this now ended Rick Baker auction on PropStoreAuction.com for what they were selling from The Rocketeer concerning the Lothar makeup appliances, AND other items from the film, including one of the original Rocketeer helmets!
Due to the astounding popularity and success of our last series of interviews with retired NYPD Homicide Detective Randy Jurgensen that aired here last December in 2 parts, and because of the content of last week’s SNMS episode on the 1980 film Cruising, we decided to reissue our first groundbreaking interview which originally ran in February of 2012 on our now defunct sister site, The Podwits.com.
So the name Randy Jurgensen doesn’t sound familiar to you? Well, believe it or not you know him. The retired NYPD Homicide Detective and film icon has acted in and produced dozens of films, and has worked on some of New York City’s most famous cases. His book, Circle of Six, is his real-life tale of going against the system and practically the entire department brass in order to bring to justice the murderer of a fellow brother-in-blue, in what turned out to be one of the city’s most notorious cop killings. This passed April marked the 44th anniversary of the killing of Officer Phil Cardillo at Mosque #7 in Harlem, and the case that forever changed the seasoned detective as well as the fabric of the entire New York City Police Department. In this SNMS EXCLUSIVE, Randy sits down with Dion Baia and talks about his very colorful career as a homicide detective and his unlikely segue into the cinema. The NYPD veteran gives his opinion of the mindset of the police hierarchy that made it so hard to be a policeman in New York City in the 60’s and 70’s. He recounts his involvement in the Patsy Fuca case, which became the 1971 film The French Connection. Perhaps for the first time, Jurgensen goes into detail of the sequence of events of the case he was assigned to, having to go underground into the gay leather-bar scene in the 1960s which eventually because the Al Pacino film Cruising. The Homicide Detective also discusses a crime scene that to this day still haunts him, and how he learned how to deal with ‘the job’. He then explains why it was so easy for him to make the gradual transition from detective to film consultant, actor and producer, examining his career in cinema. Mr. Jurgensen goes into his close friendship with legendary director William Friedkin, and actor Joe Spinell among others, and his memories working on films like The French Connection, The Godfather, Maniac, Cruising, Superman, and Sorcerer, among others. So what famous person was Jurgensen temporary pulled out from undercover to then go and arrest? What did his old childhood friend, legendary comedian George Carlin have to say about that notorious arrest? And what special message (through Dion) does actor Ed O’Neill have for Randy? Well come on and listen to a groundbreaking and highly educational episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers’ Side-Cast!
The boys are back for yet another episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! This week Dion Baia and J. Blake are again going way down the alley, back to a huge franchise that was revisited during their childhood. A property that because of other comic book characters getting reboots around the same time, this beloved hero was able to finally see a well-deserved adaptation, with some big-time Hollywood clout behind it. We are of course talking about Warren Beatty‘s Dick Tracy, from 1990.
This Hollywood blockbuster is another example of a film with a huge cast of A-listers, and coming off the heels of 1989’s Batman, this property (which had been in the works at the time for over 10 years), had some much-needed life breathed into a then 50+ year-old franchise. Truly being a testament to a pre-CGI world, Tracy was one of the last big-budget features which utilized the old tricks of Hollywood, like SFX, matte-painting, use of miniatures, optical printing, practical sets, practical Effects, and of course, practical make-up. And because of Disney‘s involvement, boy did this movie use all of the above devices to their absolute fullest, making this film truly be a proper swan-song for old Hollywood before CGI muscled it’s way into the field. But why did Disney ultimately take it’s name off the title? Even though this movie would not have been realized without the true diligence of Warren Beatty, was he in fact miss-casted in playing the title role of the legendary police detective? How true was this film to it’s comic strip roots and creator Chester Gould‘s vision? Well all these questions will be answered it yet another epic edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
Here is the 2009 TCM Leonard Maltin Dick Tracy Special which explores the history of the iconic sleuth, with Warren Beatty reprising his role as the man in yellow. And Info about the special can be found here.
Welcome back true believers to another exciting and enthralling episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! The boys noticed that St. Patrick’s Day is around the corner and figured they’d roll out a podcast about a long-forgotten, classic gangster film (surprisingly the first in the genre for Dion and Blake), that has its climatic scene coincide with the St. Patty’s Day Parade. Haven’t guessed it yet? This week their chatting up the Irish-American Mob film State of Grace, from 1990.
The boys reminiscence about the 1990’s era of gangster movies, and the connection this one has to that timeframe. Truly an unorthodox choice and certainly not the first on anyone’s list when remembering gangster films of that period, this video store staple boosts a very impressive cast of principle and supporting actors that makes it a truly forgotten gem that is certainly worth a visit (or revisit). Blake and Dion talk about their unbridled love for costar Gary Oldman, focusing particularly on his early body of work, which the boys feel doesn’t get its deserved do. Often cited by Oldman himself as one of his favor roles, why did this film literally come and go in the cinema? Did Martin Scorsese‘s Goodfellas (out the same year) actually have anything to do with it? Or is that just speculation? What inside stories do the boys themselves have from people they know who worked on this film and others around this time, that paints the picture of what was happening behind the scenes for the lead actors during this period? And how much foresight did this story have about the revitalization and gentrification that is currently happening in New York City, that had its roots in this film’s backdrop, Hell’s Kitchen circa 1989-90? Well get your favorite gun, leather jacket and your flasks, cause this week the lads are paying a kailee to their favorite Hell’s Kitchen public house in this edition of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! Erin go Bragh!
Have a watch of a rare, fascinating 1997 television documentary series called The South Bank Show with this episode dedicated to Gary Oldman, where at the 26:30 mark, he speaks about his role in State of Grace