The Cinematologists Podcast

The Cinematologists Podcast

Film academics Dr Dario Llinares and Dr Neil Fox introduce a live screening followed by an audience Q&A. The podcast also features interviews with filmmakers, scholars, writers and actors who debate all aspects of cinema and film culture.


February 1, 2023 99 min

For this episode, Neil and Dario dive back into the work of master Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa having last talked about his cinema in the earliest days of the podcast when they screened Yojimbo for an audience in Falmouth.

The occasion for this revisit is a new, extensive retrospective of his work hosted at the BFI Southbank (and some regional partner cinemas) and on their BFI Player platform. The season is curated by filmmak...

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For our first episode of 2023, Dario speaks to a great friend of the podcast Mark Jenkin about his new Cornish "folk horror", Enys Men. Starring Mary Woodvine as a volunteer isolated on a Cornish island seemingly with the task of observing and recording the local wildlife. This sets the stage for a disquieting, time-bending, psycho-ecological fable, forged through Jenkin's singular audio-visual sensibility. 

In a wide-...

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December 27, 2022 92 min

We come to the end of another cinematic year, and for our look back over 2022 Dario is joined by The Independent's film critic  Clarisse Loughrey. As usual, the episode is contextualised with a meander through some of the big themes and news stories of the year in film. This is followed  by a countdown of both Dario and Clarisse's top five films of the year. 

Both Dario and Neil want to thank our audience for their continu...

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December 21, 2022 55 min

So this is the penultimate episode of 2022. We were at the Garden Cinema on Tuesday 20th to watch The Coen Brothers Blood Simple. My co-host for the evening was the Producer and now regular contributor to the James Dean. James was absolutely superb, both an astute appreciator of the Coen Brothers as artists, but fascinatingly relaying some nuggets of personal experience from having actually met and watched the Coen's at work. ...

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In this episode, Dario talks MA student in Film Curation Chris Cassingham about his graduation film series: Beyond Interpretation. Screening at the ICA in London in January, the series that explores the connections between paranoia, conspiracy, anxiety, and the precarious realities of artistic creation at the margins of the American film industry. At a time when it is increasingly difficult to make and distribute films that defy s...

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In part 2 of our Sight and Sound special, Dario talks to the managing editor of Sight and Sound Magazine Isabel Stevens about the collation and publication of this list. With over 1600 hundred critics contributing their top tens (up from 800 in 2012), the move towards greater diversity is clear. Dario drills down into that with Isabel, along with unpacking some of the other key trends that have emerged. Isabel also takes us throug...

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So, after much hype, critique and discussion, the Sight and Sound Greatest films of all-time poll has been published and we have an extensive 2-part episode of The Cinematologists to cover it. Neil and Dario were both invited to contribute a top ten list to the poll, which was an unexpected honour in itself. Not only that, Sight and Sound kindly gave us access to the results early so we could record and release the episode to coin...

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November 24, 2022 53 min

Olivier Assayas has always been a filmmaker and critic who is interested in the essential question: what is cinema? His reflections are often espoused though the characters in his films, with the repeated deployment of the "film within a film" device, and now, in the recreation of his 1996 low budget cult classic Irma Vep, into a 8-episode HBO miniseries. This week Dario was joined by Reader in Film Studies Dr Catherine W...

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October 30, 2022 59 min

In the week leading up to Halloween, The Cinematologists Podcast returns live to The Garden Cinema for a screening and recording of Prano Baily-Bond’s debut feature Censor. A pointed and knowing homage to the 80s era of the video nasties, the story draws on the theme of moral panic, with the excellent Niamh Elgar as an officious BBFC censor whose work starts to encroach a little too much into her own trauma. With perturbing viscer...

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October 17, 2022 82 min

The centre piece of our second episode is guest host Savina Petkova's interview with Ruben Östlund about his latest film Triangle of Sadness. This follow-up to the The Square, which also won the top prize at Cannes, is another acerbic satirical intervention into the hypocrisies of liberal capitalism. "Triangle" is perhaps more laugh out loud funny than his previous work, but draws on similar socio-political observation...

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October 14, 2022 95 min

Above: Christine Molloy in The Future Tense (2022)

This is the first of two episodes we will bring you from the London Film Festival. Dario is joined for both by Savina Petkova as co-host. Savina is published in Film Comment and MUBINotebook and many other places. She is on the editorial board of @photogenie_be, Is a programmer for the upcoming Cambridge Film Festival and and is soon to complete her PhD at Kings College London...

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In our second episode of the new season we tackle a behemoth of film culture: James Bond. Bond is not a subject we've covered before, or even talked about that much on the podcast. Except perhaps in the context of thinking about franchise cinema.

This is something of an omission, as the James Bond world is a historically seminal part of film culture, which can be explored in many different ways. The industrial significance of ...

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Eight prophets of the everyday struggle for love, justice, political autonomy, dignity, and in the end survival, in Alain Tanner's incredibly powerful, moving, emotionally and intellectually complex film: Jonah who will be 25 in the Year 2000. In our return episode for season sixteen of the podcast, we are delighted to be joined by the director, producer and actor Caroline Catz who selected this film as one of her all time fav...

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July 8, 2022 97 min

It's our season finale and we were delighted to get back into a cinema for a live screening and podcast recording, our first one since Covid. The venue was the spectacular Garden cinema in Covent Garden, a beautiful art-deco retro venue where we hope to be holding regular screenings in the autumn.

As part of their celebrating Film Noir season, we screened and discussed the 1962 psychological noir Cape Fear directed J. Lee Thomp...

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In episode 144, Neil and Dario discuss a few recent films viewed with a critical eye with regards to how they fit into film culture and more broadly how they reflect (or don't) current political attitudes. 

Dario wrote in detail about the star persona of Tom Cruise in the most recent Patreon newsletter, and both Neil and Dario reflect on the experiential pleasures and reductive nostalgia of Tom Gun: Maverick along with the obvi...

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May 27, 2022 94 min

In this episode, Neil records an audio diary from the 2022 International Festival de Cannes. He reflects on being part of the team presenting Mark Jenkin’s Enys Men to the world, the weirdness of Cannes, and some of the films he saw while there. Titles discussed are Patricio Guzmán’s My Imaginary Country, Mia Hansen' Løve’s One Fine Morning, the 1972 anthology film about the Munich Olympics Visions of Eight and De Humani Corpor...

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May 12, 2022 88 min

The latest episode is another first for the podcast as this episode marks the first time we have gone back to talk about a filmmaker we’ve already dedicated an episode to. The reason for this landmark is Hannah Strong’s new book on Sofia Coppola for Abrams Books, Sofia Coppola: Forever Young. The book is the first in the Abrams series to see a female filmmaker given such lavish treatment.

Neil talks to Hannah about her approach to...

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With Neil visiting London for the first time in a while, we took the opportunity to record an impromptu conversation with both of us in the same room. Thankfully the vibe and repartee still seem to have remained intact. We didn't have a specific theme in mind for the show so we ended up talking about recent viewings and let the conversation take us where it will. The two major films we discussed were Robert Eggers' The Nort...

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In this episode, Dario talks to director Philip Barantini about his tense, absorbing and thoroughly authentic slice of restaurant life: Boiling Point. Stephen Graham is superb as Andy, a chef on the edge breakdown with pressures coming from all angles and trying to keep his diverse team of staff working for him on a busy Christmas service. Adding to the anxiety, the restaurant is unexpectedly visited by a celebrity chef and Andy&#...

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In this episode, Neil sits with emergent American filmmaker Tyler Taormina about his new, deeply strange and affecting feature Happer’s Comet, which premiered at Berlinale earlier this year. The conversation covers Tyler’s family, his approach to filmmaking, the nagging themes he can’t shake and the filmmakers his work is in dialogue with.

Additionally, Dario and Neil spend time really thinking about the theme of alienation in Tyl...

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