Film Junk Premium Podcast #59: Edgar Wright

edgarwrightpremium

By the Power of Greyskull! With the release of Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver this past weekend, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to do a more comedy-centric premium podcast based around his so-called Cornetto Trilogy (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World’s End). At the same time, we also couldn’t resist revisiting one of the more divisive movies in Film Junk history: the video game-themed Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. The resulting conversation covers a variety of topics including Edgar Wright’s directorial style and influences, hidden pop culture references and easter eggs, the inspired pairing of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, and of course, Frank’s ever-evolving concept of trilogy cred. So is Shaun of the Dead one of the greatest horror-comedies ever made? Does the ending of The World’s End betray its own themes or is it a brilliant twist? Is Scott Pilgrim vs. The World completely juvenile and sexist, and if so, is there anything wrong with that? Get a life and download this month’s premium podcast below.

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This series of premium podcasts was created to help support the regular weekly Film Junk Podcast. Head on over to Bandcamp and download full episodes for a minimum donation of just $1. As always, let us know if you experience any technical difficulties or if you have any other suggestions for future specials. Thanks for your support!

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  • RJ

    Instabuy. Finally a premium where I’ve rewatched all the movies in the days preceding it

  • pcch7

    I like how Frank says twat. And I’m with Sean on Scott Pilgrim

  • Sam

    Didn’t enjoy all the negativity towards Hot Fuzz…might be my personal favorite out of all of them. The mixing in of the Wicker Man elements is a plus for me. Though I love World’s End and Shaun of the Dead nearly as much too, just would give the edge to Hot Fuzz.

    Great premium regardless though.

    Also on board with loving “The Andes”.

  • devolutionary

    Yeah Sean, there is in fact a ton of easter eggs and references to buddy/vigilante cop movies and horror themes in Hot Fuzz. Although most of them are in service of sly wit than actual story beats. They just seem more obvious in SOTD and TWE.
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0425112/movieconnections

  • Corey Pierce

    Resident Scott Pilgrim expert:

    Jay and Frank actually make a lot of excellent points about the film, regarding character and story weaknesses. Whereas I think Sean, like myself, having read the books, are letting stuff we already know influence our opinion. That said, I think I would have liked the movie even without that knowledge.

    The key book vs movie deets, none of which are meant to excuse any faults of the movie. Just info:

    – This was adapted from 6 books and the exes were spread across all of them. Which made an inherent challenge for the movie. Each of those exes, in the books, inspire new conflicts and/or character growth, reflecting on both Scott AND Ramona.
    – Edgar Wright can’t seem to write women for shit, so when it came to the movie, he cored it down to as much of the fun stuff as possible, at the cost of the character development. He also wanted to get as many licks in from the supporting cast, so ultimately Scott and Ramona pay the biggest price in the movie. Especially Ramona.
    – Furthermore regarding Wright and his problem writing for women, he cut Lisa Miller out of the movie entirely, and she dominates the majority of one of the books, in a story where Scott is resisting her advances, also involves a lot of Kim Pine, and is kind of a big character turning point for him.
    – The style of the book is such to accentuate adorableness and puppy-like enthusiasm. It does a lot to showcase personality as well as temper negative character tics.
    – Ramona is still mysterious in the books to a degree, but the stuff with her and her weird cat, “the glow”, and the portal (“Look, a door”) all give a lot of mystique that add to why Scott would be interested in her/see her as special. The whole idea being that it’s worth fighting through all of the baggage or whatever. It makes Ramona seem more valuable as a partner, rather than as a possession, which I agree, she can seem like in the movie. But most fans don’t see it as ‘sexist’ still (and at Halloween parties in Toronto theres always a bunch of Ramonas) because the source material is pretty well known, and mandatory reading for any Torontonian into comics.
    – About the age/nostalgia thing, he creator is the same age as myself and Jay, if not also Frank. He was almost the same age as these characters when the first book came out. So the retro gaming and stuff that may seem like pandering – to me – were pretty legit at the time, and I can still easily tap into that.
    – oh, finally, a small thing: re: “how are they all in Toronto?” : Gideon is the rich and most jealous ex. He formed the League of Evil Exes and arranged for most of them (save the one filming in Canada) to be there.
    – the final book wasn’t completed by the time the movie was filming, so they shot a Knives ending as well as a Ramona one, not sure where the book was going to end up. The book ending though, is better, and has some trippy shit I think Edgar wishes he could have visualized.

    Still after all of this, I’m happy with the movie we have and would rather have one flawed, messy movie that I have forgiven uphill over various rewatches, than 6, or even 3, movies. It’s the kind of thing that might have been a stronger TV series eventually, albeit very muted visually in comparison.

  • Rainer W.F.

    Hearing Jay mention the Alt Right for the first time was worth the price of this Premium!
    Sure, he´s only about 2 yrs late to the party and probably faithfully believes the obvious garbage slander on it that HuffPo/Buzzfeed throws his way, but he might have opened Frankie´s pandora´s box of rationalism, logic and balls of steel and there´s no running back to a safe space now.

  • Corey Pierce

    cuck

  • Essie

    Thank you very much for the podcast! I hope you guys know we all appreciate it endlessly. :)

  • devolutionary

    Both sides are equally garbage. They love preying on the weaknesses of both extremes. The “with us or against us” mentality is bollocks.

  • Film Junk is my only friend

    Oh, Jay! Can’t believe he said that. Bet Frankie will not like this. Sean, thank you boys for making this and my life better. I have been waiting so long for this premium, I am goivto pop on this baby and explode.

  • Essie

    left or right lets all just agree we love some FJ. ^_^

  • Corey Pierce

    you lost me at “equally”

  • Brian.M

    Twat are you twalking about?

  • Brian.M

    Hot Fuzz is one of his strongest . Agree – you guys doubled down hard on that one.

  • Sean

    Yeah I thought Frank would balance out some of the criticism of Hot Fuzz. I know a lot of people like it more than Shaun of the Dead and it was definitely funnier than I remembered it being.

  • Sean

    I was aware of some of these (forgot to mention the Lethal Weapon fountain thing) although that list also includes a lot of things that are barely even references.

  • Sean

    Yeah the fact that they have 6 evil ex fights all in one movie clearly adds to the repetitiveness but you could also say it works more as a video game that way.

    They try to cram in bits of Ramona character development into the movie with brief flashbacks right before each fight but I don’t know that they accomplish much.

  • pcch7

    Anyone else having an issue with the bandcamp player where it skips a chapter sometimes? It skipped from the first chapter to the third and so it went from just the initial reaction to Shaun of the Dead to Sean going alright lets move onto Hot Fuzz. I thought he was taking the piss at first but then realised the player had just skipped a chapter

  • devolutionary

    It’s happened to me a couple times before. I usually shrug it off as a bug and skip back. Typically Chapters1->3, yup.

  • schizopolis

    Equal means one side supports white supremacy and the other supports oppressed minorities. Duh.

  • devolutionary

    lol, don’t have to be a neo-liberal/SJW to support that ideal.

  • schizopolis

    commented in wrong section

  • schizopolis

    I think it goes without saying that political groups support the underdog. But, the alt-right ain’t the underdog, which they claim to be. It’s clear they don’t have a problem with strengthening the white establishment. And liberals have their problems too…regressive left.

  • pcch7

    Did you get lost on the way to the Okja episode? =D

  • Drewcore

    Ya, the Bandcamp app is kind of a hot mess across the board, and not great for long “tracks”. It’s gotten a bit better about remembering your place should you choose to pause the episode, but its a bit of a crap shoot. That being said, I don’t mean to sound like I’m complaining. I’m happy to deal with any minor glitches as it seems like it’s probably the friendliest platform for FJ to do this sort of thing, and more FJ content is always a good thing.

  • Jameson

    Great premium! I rewatched them all as well and think Hot Fuzz still slightly edges out Shaun for me. I’ve always been surprised at the love for World’s End cause that’s easily my least favorite for the very reasons you all brought up. The second half is much worst than the first half and the action/genre mashing isn’t nearly as clever/inventive as it is in the first two.
    Also, never realized this but the editor for World’s End and Scott Pilgrim is different than the one for Shaun and Hot Fuzz.

  • Would That It Were So Simple.

  • OsoAmorito

    Inspired by this premium I decided to watch The World’s End last night, which I had never seen. I loved it but for me it really fell apart at the end. They just told the body snatchers to go away? Not good. Not good at all. However, if film is really a reflection of reality, the soviet style totalitarianism via modern England hinted at by The World’s End is truly frightening indeed.

    Compare this scene of public duplicity inspired by a tyrannical political atmosphere…

    Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, from The Gulag Archipelago: “At the conclusion of the conference, a tribute to Comrade Stalin was called for. Of course, everyone stood up (just as everyone had leaped to his feet during the conference at every mention of his name). … For three minutes, four minutes, five minutes, the stormy applause, rising to an ovation, continued. But palms were getting sore and raised arms were already aching. And the older people were panting from exhaustion. It was becoming insufferably silly even to those who really adored Stalin.

    However, who would dare to be the first to stop? … After all, NKVD men were standing in the hall applauding and watching to see who would quit first! And in the obscure, small hall, unknown to the leader, the applause went on – six, seven, eight minutes! They were done for! Their goose was cooked! They couldn’t stop now till they collapsed with heart attacks! At the rear of the hall, which was crowded, they could of course cheat a bit, clap less frequently, less vigorously, not so eagerly – but up there with the presidium where everyone could see them?

    The director of the local paper factory, an independent and strong-minded man, stood with the presidium. Aware of all the falsity and all the impossibility of the situation, he still kept on applauding! Nine minutes! Ten! In anguish he watched the secretary of the District Party Committee, but the latter dared not stop. Insanity! To the last man! With make-believe enthusiasm on their faces, looking at each other with faint hope, the district leaders were just going to go on and on applauding till they fell where they stood, till they were carried out of the hall on stretchers! And even then
    those who were left would not falter…

    Then, after eleven minutes, the director of the paper factory assumed a businesslike expression and sat down in his seat. And, oh, a miracle took place! Where had the universal, uninhibited, indescribable enthusiasm gone? To a man, everyone else stopped dead and sat down. They had been saved!

    The squirrel had been smart enough to jump off his revolving wheel. That, however, was how they discovered who the independent people were. And that was how they went about eliminating them. That same night the factory director was arrested. They easily pasted ten years on him on the pretext of something quite different. But after he had signed Form 206, the final document of the interrogation, his interrogator reminded him:

    “Don’t ever be the first to stop applauding.””

    …With this scene of public duplicity inspired by a tyrannical political atmosphere:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OSWOHCCV4WM

  • Rob Champion

    Can we get a Chris Nolan premium instead of Rodriguez. It time for Dunkirk. Frankie help me out. I know you want.

  • Sean

    We did record a Christopher Nolan special many years ago although I don’t think Frankie was involved.

  • Sean

    I was looking into the Gumroad app, which actually seems better than Bandcamp because it has offline playback and wouldn’t require us to divide it up into multiple tracks. Anyone have any experience with that? Might be something for us to consider.

  • Tommy

    I’ve only ever downloaded the files for playback on my preferred music app. No problems there :)

  • pcch7

    I usually do that at home but this was on my phone at work

  • Rob Champion

    But you guys didn’t do Inception or Interstellar, right?

  • Kasper

    Could always just make it possible for people to choose their platform of choice, so people who for some reason prefer Bandcamp (or likes having everything in one place, since there’s already been so many releases) can keep it that way. I, for one, would love it though if the Premiums were available anywhere else since the Bandcamp app is trash. I’d switch in a heartbeat.

  • Mrespony

    Hot Fuzz is also my favorite, it feels the least like an Edgar Wright movie which for me isn’t a bad thing. Maybe it’s how much I love movies that take place in or involve English country towns.

  • Mrespony

    Jay’s the Alex Jones enthusiast, he’s been slipping in Infowars references for years now. Keeping raging against the COPO Frankie!

  • Mrespony

    Stick with Bandcamp, I already have a bit of a library with them (including a shit ton of FJ Premiums) and probably some other junkers do to, don’t spread me across multiple apps Sean!!!!

  • TP222

    Hott Fuzz gets better with every viewing.. I went from thinking it was okay, to my favorite of the trilogy.

  • Markus

    Great premium guys!
    What is that intro song? It sounds awesome!