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  • Writer's pictureRonny Duncan Studios

What I've Been Watching (Quarantine Edition, Week 9)

Taxi Driver (1976) (Greatest Movie of All-Time Podcast) - Currently on Netflix

- Listen to the podcast on Anchor, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Breaker, Overcast, Pocketcasts, and RadioPublic

Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948) - Currently on TCM

- How many actors have a better set of 4 starring roles than Humphrey Bogart: Treasure of the Sierra Madre, Casablanca, the Maltese Falcon, and the African Queen. Here, he is pulling two vastly different characters through the course of this film: the down and out grifter that is willing to do anything to keep going and the desperate paranoid that jumps easily to the worst and most cynical conclusions. This movie would be worth the watch if it were just for Bogart, but we find great characters pieces in all three of the leads here. For my first time seeing this, it was a great joy and discovery.

Gladiator (2000) - My personal collection

- Has it really been 20 years since this came out. I guess so, but it's hard to believe that I was 10 at the time. Still, this has some of the best action sequences of its era even if the weird slow-mos take me out of the movie quite often (whether that was in editing or cinematography, I could have really done without), and it gave us two bonafide stars in Russell Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix. It is a somewhat underrated film as it seems to be passed over for the praise it deserves like many movies of the Naughties, but I'm not sure I would put it in the all-time classic section. Yet, that ending is still haunting and moving in a way it really shouldn't be, and still gets me every time. Sometimes it really is about how you finish.

Billions (Eps. 2.1-4.12) - Showtime

- Season two, obsession comes to a full head, and that moment at the end of 2.11 I found myself fist-pumping with him. However, nothing about power or playing at the highest level is ever easy or simple, and that bears out the further we get along. While I feel the events of season two were cleaned up too nicely and neatly, the show couldn't sustain a prolonged fight between Chuck and Axe forever, and it needed to evolve to survive. And just as we were hoping for that glorious team-up, they realize that they aren't every going to be friends. Season four ends with them primed to fire once again at each other, and that's what we've all been waiting for in the end: who will survive? I haven't been able to dive into this brand new season yet, but I'm anxiously awaiting that ride.

My Weekly Shows:

RUN (Ep. 1.6) HBO

- We found our emotional center and our kick-off to the ending this week. Ruby's emotional monologue in the middle seems indicative of many of the women and mothers I have known in my life, and seems to be a deeply rooted problem for many of them currently. Obviously, I have no idea what it is to be a woman, but I found an empathy in that moment that made me finally understand her. We have seemingly solved all of the mysteries that preceded the initial starting point of the show, and now we are "run"ning toward the finale.

Killing Eve (Ep. 3.5-3.6) Currently on AMC

- It is always a significant risk to do an episode completely without your title character, but doing one completely about the other central character works in that scenario. We finally get to see another side of Villanelle with her family, and the cultural background of this episode was definitely intriguing. Slowly, we've been getting more out of her character, and that is when the show seems to shine the most for me.

Unfortunately, where the show seems to be working the least is with its title character. Eve seems increasingly lost, and I rarely understand her motivations. She seems to be further and further out into space the longer the show goes on, and it makes me feel her loneliness as much as she does. Ultimately, I'm not sure where the show is pointing for her, and, thus, anywhere else as a result. With her seemingly losing more and more by the episode, how much further can we take things reasonably?

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver - HBO

Patriot Act - with Hassan Minaj - Netflix

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