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GTGC #216 The Karate Kid (1984)

April 11th, 2017

Dalton and Dustin are back at it again this time we take on The Karate Kid. That's right it's two weeks in a row that we get to talk about martial arts and a whole lot more.

Dustin likes this movie (mostly due to nostalgia) a whole lot more than Dalton but that's not enough for both of us to give a generally positive reaction to this film. So it doesn't look like we will put the movie in a body bag, but will we? From there we get on to our favorite movie mentors in which there are few surprises to long time listeners to the show. The Karate Kid inspires us in ways very similar to what Hollywood film does a lot of and we have lots of game picks.

Once we get down to analysis, we talk about racism at first. We then move to the gender dynamics of the film, and even get to talk a bit about class issues surrounding the film. We engage the question of who is the real protagonist of the film and come to the conclusion that Mr. Miyagi is far more interesting than Daniel. However, that is just a warm up to get us to a favorite topic at GoodTrash where we get to talk about violence. There are some interesting tropes we identify and we even get to talk about the theological pacifist traditions of both the East and West. It is as always a rip-roaring good time!

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GTGC #215 The Kiiler

April 3rd, 2017

We have a great time talking about this early John Woo film in which we see the first John Woo's famous Doves. Before we get to the analysis and figure out what (if anything) they may mean we have to recognize that these birds become a major icon of action cinema. As such, this week's game is our favorite action cinema iconography. There are lots of great images and trope used in action cinema and we have a blast talking about them and are very excited to hear your feedback, dear listener.

Once we get down to business, the conversation is pretty free-wheeling. First we discuss this film as a distinctively Hong Kong film as opposed to action movies from mainland China. We then shift over to a conversation about the female lead Jenny. We decide quickly that she is not so much a lead and more or less a plot device and that leaves both of us decidedly unhappy. That said, we move on to a discussion about the use of physical handicaps in Asian film, especially of the blind or one-handed swordsman variety which leads us to one of our favorite topics: the myth of redemptive violence. Here we become much happier with the film as we find its blend of Catholic and Buddhist iconography to provide an excellent counter-narrative to the myth and a great handle to discuss the globalization of action films. All in all we had a great time and invite you all to join in!

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