Great Cinema Podcasts

There was a time not too long ago when I was very excited to visit my local newsstand to pick up a variety of cinema magazines like Cineaction, Cineaste and Film Comment, as well as the occasional Entertainment Weekly. But a lot of the publications I used to read have either folded or moved to an online model. My consumption habits have also changed recently and more and more I find myself turning to podcasts to fill the void. So, I wanted to recommend a few film podcasts that I consider to be essential listens.


First up is The /Filmcast, which is one of my favorite podcasts of any genre. Each week David Chen, Jeff Cannata, Kristy Puchko and Devindra Hardawar review the most notable film of the week, whether it's the newest Marvel movie or an indie gem like Moonlight. The have a great appreciation for the whole spectrum cinema, the highbrow and the lowbrow. The show really motivates me to get out to the movies to see the film they've selected. Often, I will pause the podcast when it gets to the spoilers section and resume it after I've seen the film. They also have great discussions about what other TV and film they have been watching, along with recurring segments like /Film Court, in which a listener writes in with a movie etiquette question e.g. is it ok to sneak in food from outside the theatre, or the proper distance away from the theatre to talk about spoliers. At the time of this writing, they have published 468 weekly episodes, making them one of the elder statesmen of podcasting.

Indie Wire: Screen Talk, an extension of the Indie Wire website, exists firmly in the realm of indie, foreign and arthouse films. Their chief film critic Eric Kohn talks with Thompson on Hollywood's Anne Thompson, in a weekly series. This is the place to be if you want to hear about the hidden gems that people will be talking about months from now, and to find out which films that premiered at Cannes or Sundance have picked up distribution. It's basically inside baseball for the indie film industry.


Unspooled is a relatively new podcast, hosted by podcast veterans Paul Scheer and Amy Nicholson .  Scheer is an actor/comedian/writer, perhaps best know for his podcast How Did This Get Made?, which covers some of the biggest film disasters of all time, while Nicholson is the co-host of The Canon, a podcast that talks about recent classics and asks if the belong 'in the canon.'  Together they are creating Unspooled, which takes a look at the AFI Top 100, one film at a time. So far they have covered #1, Citizen Kane, and #100, Ben Hur, #10 The Wizard of Oz, and are planning to choose future films at random until they have covered the whole list. Their perspective is sometimes interesting because in some cases, they are watching these films for the first time. 

Barry Jenkins and Greta Gerwig on the first episode of the A24 Podcast

The A24 Podcast is also very new, but they are off to a great start. A24 has quickly become my favorite film label, much as Miramax was back in the 90's. They're responsible for films like Ladybird, Ex Machina, Under the Skin, and Moonlight. They've chosen an interesting format, opting not to have a regular host, but rather pairing two A24 filmmakers together and letting them have a wide-ranging conversation. They kicked it off with a chat between Greta Gerwig and Barry Jenkins, who talk about the sense of place in their films Ladybird and Moonlight, what it's like to represent one of your parents onscreen, and a variety of other topics. Other episodes include conversations between Sofia Coppola and Paul Schrader, Jerrod Carmichael and Bo Burnham, and Toni Collette and John Early.

That's a look at a few of the podcasts that keep me up to date with what's happening in the world of cinema. If you have some that you would like to share, please email us at phxfilmcollective at gmail dot com, or tweet at us @film_phx






Chris Ayers