Movie Date is a weekly podcast produced by The Takeaway in cooperation with Public Radio International and WNYC. It's hosted by Takeaway culture producer Kristen Meinzer and Newsday film critic Rafer Guzman.
Each podcast includes movie reviews, trivia, listener mail, and lots of banter.
Occasionally, celebrities like Scarlett Johansson, James Franco, Clive Owen, and Joss Whedon stop by, as do experts from the worlds of male stripping, zombie studies, ghost hunting, and tribute bands.
For listeners who prefer not to get dressed and leave the house in order to be entertained, Rafer and Kristen also offer weekly Sweatpants picks.
And at least once a month, Rafer and Kristen administer Movie Therapy (listeners write and call in seeking help with their life issues; Rafer and Kristen respond with a prescription of movies to help them through what ails them).
As co-hosts of the podcast, Rafer and Kristen appear live on The Takeaway every Friday; and on Soundcheck, BK Live, and the New York broadcast of All Things Considered several times a year. They've also appeared on The Brian Lehrer Show and Uptown Radio.
Movie Date has been written up by the Wall Street Journal, WomenInPodcasting.org, Babes of NPR, and other notable publications. It's been selected twice as the iTunes podcast of the day and was ranked by Stitcher as one of the top four podcasts covering The Hunger Games.
You can also listen on-demand through Stitcher.
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen give five movies the Bechdel Test. Will any of them pass? On the chopping block are two biopics ("Lee Daniels' The Butler" and "Jobs"), one suspense thriller ("Paranoia"), Werner Herzog's documentary short about texting and driving ("From One Second to the Next"), and the comic book sequel that swears like a sailor ("Kickass 2").
This week's Movie Date podcast features a wide range of movies that have Rafer and Kristen asking: When should a movie go direct to video? Is a Harry Potter ripoff ever as good as Harry Potter? How much nuance can an audience handle? Are fifty allegories too many? And is incest humor ever actually funny? On the chopping block: "Planes," "Percy Jackson," "We're the Millers," "Lovelace," and "Elysium."
This week, Kristen wonders if the creators of "Two Guns" have difficulty counting, Rafer wonders if the creators of "The Canyons" have difficulty accepting that it's no longer 1983, Kristen has questions about porn, and Rafer feels the need to defend Lindsay Lohan's acting. It's all in honor of the highly anticipated new Bret Easton Ellis/Paul Schrader film, "The Canyons" (featuring porn star James Deen) and the new Mark Wahlberg/Denzel Washington action comedy, "Two Guns."
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen tackle a strange, intense, and in some cases disappointing variety of movies, from the teen sex comedy, "The To-Do List" to the latest Woody Allen offering, "Blue Jasmine," and in between, the comic book action flick "Wolverine" and the biopic based on a tragic true event, "Fruitvale Station." They also answer voicemail, from one listener who's frustrated and another who sounds genuinely concerned.
In this week's supersized Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen face what might be the worst opening weekend all summer. On the chopping block: "The Conjuring," "RIPD," "Red 2," and "Turbo."
But it's not all bad. They also sit down with Joshua Oppenheimer, director of the critically acclaimed new documentary, "The Act of Killing."
When's the last time Johnny Depp played an average, regular guy? What exactly are those yellow egg-shaped things in the "Despicable Me" movies? And does Kevin Hart really need to explain anything? These and other questions are explored in the newest Movie Date podcast, as Rafer and Kristen review "The Lone Ranger," "Despicable Me 2," and "Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain." To help them with "The Lone Ranger," and specifically with the depiction of Tonto, they're joined by Rick Chavolla, Education and Development Officer at the American Indian Community House in New York.
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer wonders if "White House Down" might be the exact same movie as "Olympus Has Fallen,"Kristen tries to fake out Rafer with her feelings about "The Heat," Rafer talks about the most spine-tingling moment in "20 Feet From Stardom," and both imagine themselves as the lead characters in "Turner and Hooch."
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen talk about the dark side of Superman, the bright side of the apocalypse, and the inside of Paris Hilton's closet. It's all in honor of "Man of Steel," "This is the End," and "The Bling Ring."
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen review the new Owen Wilson - Vince Vaughn comedy, "The Internship," and look back at their own experiences as adult interns. They also review "The Purge" (which Kristen was surprised to discover, is not about bulimia) and Joss Whedon's take on the Shakespeare classic, "Much Ado About Nothing."
In this very special episode of Movie Date, Rafer raps a full song that he composed himself, Kristen reveals some secrets about her childhood, and both of them issue a public apology for a spoiler alert that didn't go far enough. And, of course, they talk about some movies, as well. On the chopping block: "After Earth," "Now You See Me," and "We Steal Secrets."
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen review two big releases with seemingly never-ending sequels: "The Hangover 3" and "Fast and Furious 6." They also climb into the backseat for a couple of female-led quickies: "Frances Ha" and "The English Teacher." Tune in to find out which satisfies better: the quickies or the big boys.
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer explains to Kristen what red shirts signify in the Star Trek universe, Kristen confesses to having a crush on a certain Star Trek character, and their special guest, Scott Rosenberg, reveals which Enterprise crew member he'd most like to see headlining a spin-off series. It's all in honor of the highly anticipated "Star Trek Into Darkness."
Is "The Great Gatsby" great? It's been the question on movie enthusiasts' minds for the past several months. Rafer and Kristen weigh in on the Leonardo Di Caprio-led movie, share their knowledge of the book, and compare the film to prior adaptations. They also weigh in on another Long Island movie about class differences hitting theatres this week: "Peeples," starring Kerry Washington and Craig Robinson.
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen discuss Gwyneth Paltrow's abs, Kate Hudson's divisive acting skills, action sequences that make Kristen clap, and the best terrorism-themed movies for making out during. It's all in honor of this week's two terrorism-themed films: "The Reluctant Fundamentalist" and "Iron Man 3."
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen talk about why we should all aspire to the motto, "do be a doer," as opposed to "don't be a don'ter." They also discuss middle-aged sex, wedding hook-ups, and Chef Boyardee. Special guest Cate Contino Cowit gives her insights as well. It's all in honor of the new action-crime-comedy, "Pain and Gain" starring Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, and Anthony Mackie; and the romantic comedy, "The Big Wedding," starring Robert De Niro, Susan Sarandon, Diane Keaton, Amanda Seyfried, Robin Williams, and Topher Grace.
This week's Movie Date podcast is arriving a few days late, as Kristen was dedicating all of last week's working hours to covering the news in Boston. But it's still packed with Rafer and Kristen freshness! On the chopping block: "The Company You Keep," a thriller about what happens when radical terrorists hit middle age; and "Oblivion," a sci-fi adventure about what happens when Tom Cruise refuses to mature beyond his "Top Gun" years. Thanks for your patience, Movie Daters!
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen debate whether the new movie "42" is the story of Jackie Robinson, the story of the integration of baseball, or another story all together. They also discuss the new film, "The Place Beyond the Pines," which stars Ryan Gosling, Eva Mendes, and Bradley Cooper as a bunch of sad people living extremely sad lives. Guess which one made Kristen cry? And guess which one helped Rafer teach his son an important lesson?
In this week's Movie Date podcast, Rafer and Kristen look at three very different stories of survival, one of which is a reboot ("Jurassic Park 3D"), one of which is a remake ("Evil Dead"), and one of which is a serious documentary ("No Place on Earth").