The Big Picture Podcast

A film is a sum of many moving parts, that move us in just as many ways. Join us on an episodic journey to deconstruct the inner workings of movies; the props, architecture, fashion, design – seeing how these unique filmic elements combine to cast their magical spell over us. A podcast for anyone who has fallen in love with film, and is curious to know why.

Great Director Debuts > Part 2
In this second part of our Great Director Debuts podcast, Gabriel and Tom discuss Richard Kelly’s mind-bending cult classic Donnie Darko from 2001 about an awkward teenager’s struggles with girls, teachers and time-travel and Ari Aster’s masterful revisionary horror film Hereditary (2018), starring Toni Colette as the beleaguered matriarch of a family haunted by a terrifying ancestry. We discuss the themes, symbolism, audience reception and the lasting impact of both films, while identifying the unique ‘voice’ of their directors that can be seen in much of their subsequent work.
Great Director Debuts > Part 1
In this 3 part episode of the Big Picture podcast, Gabriel and Tom select and discuss great director debuts from the year 2000 and up. Right out of the gate, these film-makers showed a clarity of vision and creative maturity that ensured theirs would be names (and films) we’d all remember. In part 1, our spotlight focusses on Kenneth Lonergan’s 2000 film You Can Count on Me about orphaned siblings navigating their complex relationship in small-town America, and Tarsem Singh’s visually audacious sci-fi, serial-killer-thriller The Cell, also released in 2000. We discuss the themes, symbolism, audience reception and the lasting impact of both films, while identifying the unique ‘voice’ of their directors that is now evident in much of their future work.
Episode 5: Licorice Pizza
In this episode Gabriel and Tom discuss Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest meandering opus, Licorice Pizza. A tale of love, lust, ambition and pinball with two stellar central performances by newcomers Alana Haim and Cooper Hoffman as an unlikely couple struck by cupid’s bent arrow. A sweeping, fast-paced romp through a sun-drenched and pot-infused San Fernando Valley as backdrop to the schemes and misdeeds of two youngsters just trying to figure shit out. We uncover themes and ideas weaved into the mix to help delve that little bit deeper into the thinking behind this very contemporary (and quirky) love story.
Episode 4: Seconds
In this episode Gabriel and Tom are joined by Jez Conolly, co-author of a new book about the 1966 John Frankenheimer film ‘Seconds’; a nightmarish journey into sci-fi paranoia that is now considered a classic of post-McCarthy era American cinema. Part noir thriller and part body horror, the film – which initially flopped at the box office – is a richly dense, and bleak portrait of the mid-life crises of masculinity aroused by the 1960s counterculture. Taking sharp aim at the consequences of blind consumerism, ‘Seconds’ was way ahead of its time in predicting the impact on our lives of corporate surveillance, technology and a desire for self-transformation – making it a must-see for all film fans.
Episode 3: Lost in America
In this latest episode of The Big Picture podcast, Gabriel and Tom discuss and dissect Albert Brooks’ 1985 cult comedy ‘Lost in America’, about a successful but dissatisfied yuppie couple who drop out of the rat race and take to the open road. With his trademark sardonic wit, Brooks’ film takes aim at the false promise of Reagan-era capitalism while zooming in on marital tensions, personal dreams and how to cope (or not) when your wife blows the nest egg at a Vegas casino roulette wheel. We talk film posters, reveal behind-the-scenes factoids and recommend a few of our other favourite road movies.
Episode 2: Me, Myself and I
In this second episode of The Big Picture Podcast, Gabriel and Tom discuss two films that explore the nature of ego and the often fraught journey a person takes from fear and doubt to self realisation. Agnes Varda’s 1962 French new wave masterpiece Cléo from 5 to 7 (Cléo de 5 à 7) and Paolo Sorrentino’s gorgeous 2013 love-letter to Rome, The Great Beauty (La Grande Bellezza) both offer up a rich tapestry of meaning that tell us as much about the value of time as about the need to connect with others in order to live a meaningful and fulfilling life.
Episode 1: Poltergeist
In this, our first Big Picture podcast, Editor-in-chief Gabriel Solomons and Editor Thomas Puhr discuss the 1982 Horror Classic Poltergeist, picking apart various themes, focussing on hidden meanings and revealing some insights about the film’s poster and iconic objects such as the television, toy clown and the haunted house itself at the centre of all the mischief.