Every week Owen Hughes rides the Failed Critics steam train from host Steve Norman’s caravan park in Swanage all the way to guest Andrew Brooker’s residence in Milton Keynes, stopping at the exact same point along the way to peer through the windows of the FC HQ in Oxford.
Unfortunately there are no affairs or murders for him to observe and fantasise about, only a depressed version of himself wondering why the bloody hell he sits through these uninspiring movies that 2016 keeps on churning out. Specifically the latest to cross the team’s path, The Girl on the Train, starring Emily Blunt.
This week’s journey also pulls in at the games and tech podcast Super Pixels Radio stop. Failed Critics debutant Elliot Beverley chats with Owen about the animated stop-motion family movie, Kubo and the Two Strings.
We also have the buffet cart stocked with the latest trailers from the New York Comic Convention. It’s got all of your favourites only slightly overpriced, including Power Rangers, John Wick 2, Iron Fist, and the new Resident Evil and War of the Planet of the Apes teasers.
In What We’ve Been Watching, Brooker leaves the quiet carriage to shout about the Ghostbusters extended edition, while Steve shimmies out of the bog after feeling less than Supersonic to review the new Oasis documentary, as well as revisiting The Martian for the first time since its cinema release.
Join us again next week for a triple bill of film franchises that should’ve ended before reaching a trilogy.
With temporary host Paul Field getting to the ballot box and voting in blind panic to leave the Failed Critics Podcast after two long successful weeks, we finally have our Steve Norman back!
Luckily, Steve hasn’t done a Roy Hodgson as his team of Owen Hughes and Andrew Brooker don’t bottle it on the grandest stage of all. Assuming that you agree that the “grandest stage” is of course a free audio podcast.
Although they are still a bunch of fucking £50k fucking cocaine prostitute fucking limousine fucking cunts.
This week’s episode features reviews of three brand new releases, with a main review of Roland Emmerich’s sci-fi disaster feature (well, what other kind of film was he likely to make?) Independence Day: Resurgence. Set 20 years after the original, the aliens have come to reap their revenge – only this time, they’re… just… going to do the same thing again. Probably because they knew there would be no Will Smith this time.
Owen and Brooker also find time to discuss a fantasy movie worth watching as the Italian-French-English Tale of Tales arrives in cinemas – and on VOD services such as Curzon and Google Play simultaneously – just a touch too late to show how well the UK can work with our European brethren.
Speaking of Italian productions, Brooker also talks up Suburra, the crime film of the year that you probably haven’t heard of. Meanwhile Steve conjures up a review of The Conjuring (see what I did there?) and Owen continues the horror-film discussion by reminding everybody how great Hellraiser is.
All of this plus Steve’s reaction to Adam Sandler’s latest Netflix feature The Do-Over, James Earl Jones voicing Darth Vader in Star Wars: Rogue One, and the tragic death of Anton Yelchin.
Welcome to this week’s episode of the Failed Critics Podcast, with your hosts … erm … Stan? Stuart? Stephen? Steve, Steve Norman, that’s the fella, and Owen Hopkins– I mean, Hughes. They’re joined by Andrew Brooker to review, look at, discuss, scratch their heads and generally mull over the latest Fox-driven superhero movie, X-Men: Apocalypse.
Before all of that, the trio run through the latest film news to cross their paths; namely the trailers for Ghostbusters (and why it might be OK to not like it), Star Trek Beyond, The Purge: Election Year and Independence Day: Resurgence. There’s also room for a discussion about Nicolas Winding Refn’s plans to remake Witchfinder General, as well as an astonished glance towards the impressive cast list of Thor: Ragnarok, boasting the likes of Cate Blanchett, Karl Urban and Jeff Goldblum.
As ever, the ongoing, never ending quiz battle between Owen and Steve rages on, this week pitting the latter against Brooker as they try to work out which X-Men names are real and which Owen has simply made up. In What We’ve Been Watching: Steve revisits a the first and the most recent of the X-Men movies prior to his trip to see Apocalypse; Brooker MC’s over Magic Mike XXL; and Owen gushes over cult zombie classic The Return of the Living Dead.
Join us again next week for a special movie-star triple bill episode.
Firstly, thanks to everyone who joined in on our live broadcast of episode 202 on our YouTube channel on Monday. We’re considering it a success – whether it was or wasn’t isn’t really up to Steve Norman, Owen Hughes and Andrew Brooker to decide! But people chatted to us during the show, we received messages via Twitter, and the live stream didn’t crash once. Huzzah!
This week’s podcast is pretty much a rip of the YouTube video edited into a more audio-friendly format. Jingles have been edited in, whilst the majority the references to stuff that happened visually that wouldn’t have made sense on an audio only podcast have been edited out.
What has been left in is our chat about this week’s film news, including another new Netflix movie acquisition starring Will Smith, directed by David Ayer, plus a set-top box that could potentially change the way we view cinema releases forever.
We’ve also got our round up of what we’ve been watching. Steve talks us through the generic but decent action film London Has Fallen; Owen discusses the first five episodes of the second season of Daredevil; and Brooker does his homework ahead of Batman v Superman by re-watching Nolan’s trilogy plus Man of Steel. Our new release reviews saw the team take in the safe-for-work porcelain doll horror The Boy, Ben Wheatley’s latest weird class-war narrative High Rise, and the thematic sequel to 2008’s monster movie, 10 Cloverfield Lane.
There’s even room for our regular film quiz and Steve’s reaction to Pudsey the Dog: The Movie, his booby-prize for losing last week’s quiz. Oh, and Owen’s mad rapping skills. Wiki-wiki-wild wild west…
Join us again next week as things return to normal for a review of DC’s newest blockbuster.
Then why not try giving the following 60 second clip promoting our podcast a quick listen as we attempt to “string a few sentences together”!
Each week on the Failed Critics Podcast, the team review the latest cinema release, talk about what else they’ve seen in the past seven days and discuss the latest news from the film world (if it happens to have crossed their Twitter feeds prior to recording). Occasionally the team will also produce a themed Triple Bill, choosing three films each that fit a particular category.
If you want in depth reviews of the key components that make an individual movie good or bad, then you’re looking in the wrong place. If you want to listen to a group of people chat about film and be occasionally humorous with it, then that’s us.
In the meantime, if you’re new to the Failed Critics podcast and want to listen to more, but aren’t sure where to join in from, then the latest episode is always the best. We hardly ever have in-jokes or call backs to podcasts older than maybe one or two weeks, so hopefully you won’t feel left out!
The Failed Critics Podcast was created by James Diamond. It’s produced by Owen Hughes and presented by Steve Norman. Including (but not limited to) contributions by: Gerry McAuley, Carole Petts, Matt Lambourne, Callum Petch, Andrew Brooker, Mike Shawcross, Paul Field and James Diamond.
Welcome to the Failed Critics podcast– or should I say, “quizcast”! For the first time in Failed Critics history, we’re teaming up with some fellow podcasters for 60 minutes of quizzing.
With our regular host Steve Norman in the quiz master’s chair, it was up to Owen Hughes and Matt Lambourne to represent Failed Critics. Up against them, from the weekly film review podcast Black Hole Cinema, was Tony Black and Matt Latham. The third and final team on the quiz (and the only non-film related podcast) was Wikishuffle, with Jack Stewart, Chris Wallace and Phil Sharman. Claims of shenanigans were respectfully kept to a minimum, although promises to rein in competitiveness were hastily abandoned during the first round.
We are alive, we are consciousness, we are reviewing Neil Blomkamp’s latest science fiction action thriller, Chappie. By “we”, that of course refers to podcast regulars Steve Norman and Owen Hughes, who are joined this week by Andrew Brooker (for the second week in a row) and Jack Stewart from Not This Again making his Failed Critics debut.
The news section this week sees the group discuss the hype (or apparent lack of) for the latest Avengers: Age of Ultron trailer and the announcement that Tim Burton will be remaking the Disney classic Dumbo, which causes a collective groan.
Also on the podcast this week: Steve blames his girlfriend for taking him to see J-Lo’s erotic thriller The Boy Next Door and somehow ends up on the topic of Babestation; Jack explains exactly why he (quite rightly) loves the classic David Simon war drama Generation Kill; Brooker juxtaposes a review of the emotional drama Still Alice with a chat about the action-packed TV show Vikings; and Owen runs through his favourite and least favourite segments of the portmanteau horror The ABCs of Death 2.
Join us again next week for another hour or so of film and banter from us, as guaranteed by Steve.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to this glitzy star-studded episode of the Failed Critics Podcast, brought to you by Matt Lambourne’s well tickled bottom, in association with Paul Field’s Slander.
Steve Norman is donning his sharpest tuxedo to present the podcast, whilst Owen Hughes runs around backstage like a lunatic handing out golden envelopes as we reveal the results of the 87th Academy Awards – and more importantly, we discuss which categories that we correctly predicted last week.
There’s also the nail biting conclusion to the quiz, which is tied at 2-2. Just what the hell has Steve been teasing Owen with this past month?! Speaking of teasing, Matt finally gets bummed out over 50 Shades of Grey, whilst Paul prefers his erotic-drama to be more art-house with The Duke of Burgundy. Meanwhile, Owen explains why Project Almanac is a waste of time and Steve has his Cake Ann-iston’s it [literally the worst pun I’ve written in my entire life].
We’ll be back the same time next week with more reviews and movie chat.
As always, your illustrious host Steve Norman and ever present Owen Hughes lead the way through a tightly packed episode. Coming into your earholes to review the 18-rated, arse-ticklingly rude 50 Shades of Grey is Failed Critics debutant, Paul Field. Also joining them this week is Matt Lambourne, mainly so he can recount the story of why he didn’t see the (not so) erotic flick.
The team also craftily knocked out reviews for two other new releases before climaxing with 50 Shades of Grey, as Will Smith’s latest con-film Focus, as well as mind-bending time-travel thriller Predestination also get the once over.
They also somehow found room to squeeze in an extra couple of reviews. Paul filled us in on Korean revenge film I Saw The Devil (as reviewed in the Half Decade In Film article this week); Owen got slightly topical with space-hopping sci-fi Virtuality; and our pal Matt welcomed Die Hard and Enter The Dragon to the party.
Tune in again next week to hear less innuendos, in addition to the results of our Academy Award prediction quiz.
For your chance to win a few crumby randomly selected second hand DVD’s that we no longer want, simply comment on this article with your picks for each of the 11 categories below! The winner will be the entrant with the most correct guesses. In the event of a tie, the winner will be chosen at random. The term ‘winner’ is used lightly.
1 – Best Picture
American Sniper – Clint Eastwood, Robert Lorenz, Andrew Lazar, Bradley Cooper and Peter Morgan
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) – Alejandro González Iñárritu, John Lesher and James W. Skotchdopole
Boyhood – Richard Linklater and Cathleen Sutherland
The Grand Budapest Hotel – Wes Anderson, Scott Rudin, Steven Rales and Jeremy Dawson
The Imitation Game – Nora Grossman, Ido Ostrowsky and Teddy Schwarzman
Selma – Christian Colson, Oprah Winfrey, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner
The Theory of Everything – Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Lisa Bruce and Anthony McCarten
Whiplash – Jason Blum, Helen Estabrook and David Lancaster
2 – Best Director
Wes Anderson – The Grand Budapest Hotel
Alejandro González Iñárritu – Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Richard Linklater – Boyhood
Bennett Miller – Foxcatcher
Morten Tyldum – The Imitation Game
3 – Best Actor
Steve Carell – Foxcatcher as John Eleuthère du Pont
Bradley Cooper – American Sniper as Chris Kyle
Benedict Cumberbatch – The Imitation Game as Alan Turing
Michael Keaton – Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) as Riggan Thomson / Birdman
Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything as Stephen Hawking
4 – Best Actress
Marion Cotillard – Two Days, One Night as Sandra Bya
Felicity Jones – The Theory of Everything as Jane Wilde Hawking
Julianne Moore – Still Alice as Dr. Alice Howland
Rosamund Pike – Gone Girl as Amy Elliott-Dunne
Reese Witherspoon – Wild as Cheryl Strayed
5 – Best Supporting Actor
Robert Duvall – The Judge as Judge Joseph Palmer
Ethan Hawke – Boyhood as Mason Evans, Sr.
Edward Norton – Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) as Mike Shiner
Mark Ruffalo – Foxcatcher as Dave Schultz
J. K. Simmons – Whiplash as Terence Fletcher
6 – Best Supporting Actress
Patricia Arquette – Boyhood as Olivia Evans
Laura Dern – Wild as Barbara “Bobbi” Grey
Keira Knightley – The Imitation Game as Joan Clarke
Emma Stone – Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) as Sam Thomson
Meryl Streep – Into the Woods as The Witch
7 – Best Original Screenplay
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) – Alejandro González Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. and Armando Bo
Boyhood – Richard Linklater
Foxcatcher – E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman
The Grand Budapest Hotel – Wes Anderson and Hugo Guinness
Nightcrawler – Dan Gilroy
8 – Best Adapted Screenplay
American Sniper – Jason Hall from American Sniper by Chris Kyle, Scott McEwen and Jim DeFelice
The Imitation Game – Graham Moore from Alan Turing: The Enigma by Andrew Hodges
Inherent Vice – Paul Thomas Anderson from Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon
The Theory of Everything – Anthony McCarten from Travelling to Infinity: My Life with Stephen by Jane Wilde Hawking
Whiplash – Damien Chazelle from his short film of the same name
9 – Best Animated Feature Film
Big Hero 6 – Don Hall, Chris Williams and Roy Conli
The Boxtrolls – Anthony Stacchi, Graham Annable and Travis Knight
How to Train Your Dragon 2 – Dean DeBlois and Bonnie Arnold
Song of the Sea – Tomm Moore and Paul Young
The Tale of the Princess Kaguya – Isao Takahata and Yoshiaki Nishimura
10 – Best Foreign Language Film
Ida (Poland) in Polish – Paweł Pawlikowski
Leviathan (Russia) in Russian – Andrey Zvyagintsev
Tangerines (Estonia) in Estonian and Russian – Zaza Urushadze
Timbuktu (Mauritania) in French – Abderrahmane Sissako
Wild Tales (Argentina) in Spanish – Damián Szifrón
11 – Best Documentary – Feature
Citizenfour – Laura Poitras, Mathilde Bonnefoy and Dirk Wilutsky
Finding Vivian Maier – John Maloof and Charlie Siskel
Last Days in Vietnam – Rory Kennedy and Keven McAlester
The Salt of the Earth – Wim Wenders, Lélia Wanick Salgado and David Rosier
Virunga – Orlando von Einsiedel and Joanna Natasegara
Callum Petch, Callum Petch, does whatever Callum can – i.e. talking even more than James used to as he swings straight from last week’s episode to this week’s edition of the Failed Critics podcast. He joins your regular podcast host Steve Norman and hanger-on Owen Hughes to discuss the big film news over the past seven days.
Chiefly, Tuesday’s long-expected announcement that the rebooted Spider-Man will definitely be making his first appearance in an upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe movie, on loan from Sony. We mull over potential ramifications for existing Marvel films, casting choices we’d make and if it’s actually that big a deal anyway.
Completely forgoing our regular “what we’ve been watching” segment, as there just wasn’t enough damn time, we instead take a detailed look over the weekend’s BAFTA award winners and losers, as well as the awards ceremony itself.
We also couldn’t have hand picked four different main release reviews if we tried, as the eclectic mix of space opera Jupiter Ascending, Aardman animation Shaun the Sheep: The Movie, controversial comedy The Interview and the Oscar nominated Selma all get discussed.
Join us again next week for a special Academy Award preview episode with more guests, probably more arguments and hopefully a shorter run time!
Follow us down the secret service elevator to this week’s Failed Critics Podcast. Fist-bumping his way onto this episode is our very own Callum Petch.
The main release reviews this week see the team chat about Matthew Vaughn’s new action-comedy Kingsman: The Secret Service starring Colin Firth, Samuel L Jackson, Mark Strong and Taron Egerton; as well as the latest in Disney’s recent animation resurgence, Big Hero 6.
From Steve’s second excursion through the Harry Potter franchise and Callum’s complete bafflement at Luxembourgian comedy The Notorious Guys, to Owen’s elongated gushing over German high-brow arty-farty Werner Herzog film The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser, there’s plenty to mull over in this week’s edition.
The team also managed to fit in conversations about the Sundance Film Festival and Annie Award winners, even with Steve’s threat to up the ante in the quiz after finally forcing himself to watch I, Frankenstein looming over proceedings. Uh oh!
Join us again next week as we’ll be reviewing The Interview, Jupiter Ascending and picking through the weekend’s BAFTA winners.
Opening the pod bay doors on this week’s Failed Critics Podcast and simultaneously rescuing us from the brink of disaster is our special guest, Matt Lambourne.
Matt joins regulars Owen and Steve for a one-off ‘Artificial Intelligence’ themed episode! And by that we don’t just mean Owen is pretending to be cleverer than he actually is again…
There’s still a main review which sees the team discuss Alex Garland’s directorial debut, Ex Machina; the story of a potentially sentient machine called Ava who is the subject of a Turing test. In honour of which, the trio have resurrected the ‘triple bill’ segment to discuss three of the most interesting uses of A.I. in film that they could each think of. Steve had to be on top form to prevent the podcast from turning into a playground RoboCop vs Terminator debate for the next 60 minutes!
Welcome to the Failed Critics podcast. Keeping to Steve & Owen’s tempo this week are two more guests!
Returning for his first appearance since the end of year awards episode is James Diamond, ready to demolish you with his reviews of Whiplash and all things Luc Besson. Joining James is horror-fanatic and best mates with ‘Scream Queen’ Jessica Cameron; it’s Mike Shawcross finally making his long overdue debut with American Sniper, Testament of Youth and 80’s b-movie creature feature Alligator in his sights.
Among a hefty discussion on the Academy Awards and Razzie nominations, Owen explains why not even Steven Soderbergh puts giant space baby in the corner* with his cut of 2001: A Space Odyssey, whilst Steve struggles to get his head around the popularity of Disney’s mammoth hit, Frozen. Let it go, Steve! Let it goooo…
Join us next week for reviews of Mortdecai, Ex Machina and Kingsman!
If you’re a regular subscriber to the Failed Critics Podcast and happened to listen to our final two episodes of 2014 – specifically, the Christmas and End of Year Awards – you may have noticed that something was… different. It wasn’t quite the same as our usual episodes. Mainly because there was something missing. Or, rather, someone was missing. That is to say, Carole Petts was absent from our drunken escapades.
Having already written for the site and covered the London Film Festival for us, Carole made her debut on the regular podcast series in April 2014 and later replaced James as the permanent member of the trio (along with myself and Steve) when he retired from running the site. The bad news is that sadly, for quite understandable reasons that I won’t go into, she has decided to take an indeterminate leave of absence, which has resulted in a fundamental change to the way we will be producing our podcast for 2015.
The good news is that we will be making a fundamental change to the way we produce our podcast for 2015! Although we are extremely grateful for the humour, knowledge and dedication that Carole brought to our weekly disorganised ramblings (not so much her quiz film choices! The Room for fuck’s sake!) and she will be sadly missed, we’ve decided to take the opportunity to spruce things up a bit.
Firstly, we are all too aware of the terrible sound quality of the podcast in the latter half of last year. Believe me, as much as it hurt your ears listening to it, it hurt mine hearing about it. We’ve been speaking to a few different people, got some fresh ideas from them about how to fix the audio issues and with a bit of luck it’ll all be fine before the new series even comes out.
Secondly, we toyed with the idea of continuing the podcast with just me and Steve. Nobody else. But we’ve had such great guests over the past two years! We’ve had Gerry McAuley (who was one of the “originals”) popping back every once in a while, our anime-expert Godzilla fanboy Matt Lambourne, sweary-shouty-angry Scot Dave McFarlane (from our sister site Bornoffside.net) and of course the man responsible for the majority of the written content that goes up on the site, Callum Petch. The problem is, we know just how much time this podcast eats up (believe it or not) and although we’ve enjoyed their company in the past, we didn’t want to force any one person to commit to being a regular again. Therefore, the most logical solution seemed to be to get them all back via the introduction of a rotating guest list.
But wait! There’s more…
As well as familiar voices returning to podcast, we’ve also managed to stick James into a sack and drag him to our darkened one-mic-only studio at Failed Critics HQ and will be forcing him to appear on a few of our episodes throughout the year.
There’s some great films released in the UK in the early part this year: Birdman, Whiplash, Foxcatcher, Inherent Vice, Fifty Shades of Grey – well maybe not so much that last one! But we hope you’ll stick with us throughout this period and normal service will be resumed later this week when we’re joined by Matt and Gerry to kick off the new year’s set of podcasts.
“‘If you want the rainbow, you got to put up with the rain’. Do you know which philosopher said that? Dolly Parton. And people say she’s just a big pair of tits.” – David Brent, The Office
This time of year always comes around so quickly. No sooner have you sat down to finally get around to loading up Netflix and catching up on some of those films you’ve missed over the last 12 months than we’re asking you to vote in our end of year awards.
If you’re looking for some inspiration, you can flick through our reviews or listen to some of our podcasts over the past year.
To vote for your top 10 films of 2014, top 5 performances, worst 3 films and a few other categories that we’re sure you’re just dying to tell us all about, simply visit our awards page and complete the submission form: https://failedcritics.com/failed-critics-awards/
Voting closes on Monday 22nd December 2014 at 5pm.
Home of the Failed Critics Film Podcast and blog, gaming podcast Character Unlock, and cult film podcast Underground Nights