Switchblade Sisters

Switchblade Sisters is a new podcast providing deep cuts on genre flicks from a female perspective. Every week, film critic April Wolfe sits down with a phenomenal female film-maker to slice-and-dice a classic genre movie - horror, exploitation, sci-fi and many others! Along the way, they cover craft, the state of the industry, how films get made, and more. Mothers, lock up your sons, the Switchblade Sisters are coming!

Switchblade Sisters Episode 61: 'Under the Skin' with 'Rust Creek' Director Jen McGowan

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Guests: 
Jen McGowan

Under the Skin

This week we've got director Jen McGowan (Rust Creek, Kelly & Cal) on the program to discuss Jonathan Glazer's Under the Skin. Jen takes April deep into the world of filmmaking as she discusses the concept of "process dictating product." They examine the differences between making films in Europe and the US. They break down the genius of Jonathan Glazer and the exact steps he took to complete this film. Jen explains what it's like pitching as a director for hire. Plus, she and April dissect Scarlett Johansson's risky performance and how she's both sexy and scary at the same time.

You can see Rust Creek in limited theaters and VOD on January 4th.

And if you haven't seen it yet, go watch Under the Skin on Netflix.

With April Wolfe and Jen McGowan.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 60: 'Point Break' with 'Alaska Is a Drag' Director Shaz Bennett

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Guests: 
Shaz Bennett

Point Break

This week we've got writer and director Shaz Bennett on the program to talk about Kathryn Bigelow's classic, Point Break. As Shaz says on the show, this is the movie she most wishes she had directed. She and April also discuss Shaz's newest film, Alaska Is a Drag, which follows an aspiring drag queen turned boxer stuck working at a cannery in Alaska. The two of them dissect the masterful directing of Bigelow during the visceral chase scenes. They look at the unconventional casting of Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves. They praise the performance and genius of Lori Petty. And Shaz elaborates on being yourself while directing, and being close to your actors on set. April has a special connection with this film as well, having written a retrospective for Rolling Stone last year.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch Point Break.

With April Wolfe with Shaz Bennett.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org
Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 59: 'Black Panther' with Director, Actor, and Dancer Delila Vallot

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Guests: 
Delila Vallot

Black Panther

This week we are so lucky to have on director, actress, and dancer, Delila Vallot. Delila is a prolific worker and has too many credits to list. But some of her films as director include the thriller Tunnel Vision and the documentary Can You Dig This? which won a Jury Award at the Los Angeles Film Festival. On this episode she is here to discuss Black Panther. She and April talk about Michael B. Jordan's acting techniques and the effects of going method for a role. They touch upon how director Ryan Coogler was able to take a huge property like Black Panther and still make it personal. And they cover the intentional use of the actor's natural hair in the film and the importance of representing it in media.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch Black Panther.

With April Wolfe with Delila Vallot.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org
Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 58: 'Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte' with 'Clara's Ghost' Director Bridey Elliott

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Guests: 
Bridey Elliott

Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte

This episode specializes in creepy haunted houses with potentially crazy women living inside them. And who better to have on the show than director and actor, Bridey Elliott. She's on to discuss her new film Clara's Ghost. Her film features Bridey's own mother, Paula Niedert Elliott, playing Clara, an isolated woman who begins seeing a ghost around the house. And appropriately, the film Bridey chose to discuss today is Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte starring Bette Davis. Davis' character Charlotte also believes she's seeing ghosts in her family's plantation home. These movies work well together thematically as they both touch upon paranoia, disbelief of women, and a real confusion on who is actually going crazy. Bridey talks about making her new film with her entire family, including her mother who had never acted before. She even shares a story about how she was able to shoot a scene with a naked woman walking around her childhood neighborhood. April and she also discuss the history of Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte, all the behind the scenes drama, and how this is a feminist film.

Check out Clara's Ghost in theaters and streaming.

And if you haven't seen it yet, go watch Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte.

With April Wolfe with Bridey Elliott.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org
Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 57: 'Leave Her to Heaven' with 'Dirty John' Showrunner Alexandra Cunningham

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Guests: 
April Wolfe
Guests: 
Alexandra Cunningham

Leave Her to Heaven

We've got a truly fascinating conversation on this week's episode with 'Dirty John' showrunner Alexandra Cunningham. Her new show is based upon the wildly popular LA Times true crime podcast of the same name. It deals with deception, seduction, and intrigue. These are all themes found in the film that Alexandra chose to discuss, the 1945 technicolor noir classic Leave Her to Heaven. As 'Dirty John' deals with the mind of a manipulative conman, Alexandra has become somewhat of an expert on the mindset of villains. And she has some enlightening words on Gene Tierney's coldhearted Ellen in Leave Her to Heaven. Alex comes from a playwriting background and explains how she learned to show rather than to tell. April and she dissect the famous drowning scene in the film. And Alex has a fascinating story about working for a suicide hotline, and reveals how sometimes the scariest things happen in the light of day.

Check out Dirty John on Bravo.

And if you haven't seen it yet, go watch Leave Her to Heaven.

With April Wolfe with Alexandra Cunningham.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org
Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 56: 'Funny Games' with 'The Long Dumb Road' Director Hannah Fidell

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Guests: 
April Wolfe
Guests: 
Hannah Fidell

Funny Games

A great new episode coming your way with the director of the new road comedy The Long Dumb Road, Hannah Fidell. Her film follows the sheltered Nat (played by Tony Revolori) as he drives cross country to attend art school in Los Angeles. On his way he picks up a hitchhiker (played by Jason Mantzoukas) who shakes up Nat's close minded worldview.

The movie that Hannah has chosen to discuss this week is Michael Haneke's Funny Games. She sort of picks both the American and Austrian version since they are almost perfectly identical films. April calls Hannah's own film The Long Dumb Road a comedic Funny Games, since both deal with an intruder breaking the unwritten rules of politeness and social decency. Hannah and April really dig into the genius of Haneke and his masterful filmmaking. They elaborate on how Funny Games is eerily prescient in its prediction of the emergence of "alt-right trolls." April also reveals that this movie was somewhat born out of Haneke's hatred for Natural Born Killers and how this Austrian film was really intended for American audiences.

Check out The Long Dumb Road streaming now.

And if you haven't seen it yet, go watch Funny Games, either the Austrian or the American version.

With April Wolfe with Hannah Fidell

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org
Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 55: 'Jennifer's Body' with 'Cam' Writer/Producer Isa Mazzei

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Guests: 
April Wolfe
Guests: 
Isa Mazzei

Jennifer's Body

In this season of Thanksgiving, we give thanks for our wonderful guest this week. We've got the writer and producer of the new film Cam, Isa Mazzei. We're so excited about having her on the show that we dropped the episode a day early! She's on the program to talk about the much under appreciated Jennifer's Body. Isa is a former camgirl herself and discusses the expertise she brought in creating her film. She also discusses her role on set and how she needed to direct some scenes to maintain the female gaze. She and April also discuss Jennifer's Body and how it subverts the expectations of a teen comedy. They elaborate on the role of director Karyn Kusama and screenwriter Diablo Cody and the results of having an all female creative team. This a great episode and one that should be recommended to your in-laws over Thanksgiving dinner.

Check out Cam, now streaming on Netflix.

And if you haven't seen it yet, go watch Jennifer's Body on HBO Go.

With April Wolfe with Isa Mazzei.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 54: 'The Mask' with Emily Heller

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Guests: 
April Wolfe
Guests: 
Emily Heller

The Mask

On today's episode, we're talking about the movie for which the masses have been clamoring. That's right, we've got comedian Emily Heller on to talk about The Mask. Emily is a stand-up comedian, but also an actor and Emmy nominated writer. She's written for 'Crowded', 'People of Earth', and most recently 'Barry.' On this episode, she gives April an inside look of what it is like to be in a writer's room. She discusses how she got started as a TV writer, what she did to get hired, and what kind of pilot's people are looking to read. She and April also dive right into the mixed messages of The Mask and how the movie is basically one giant meme. This is a hilarious episode and one not to be missed. Some would say it's "SMOKIN'!" (Sorry).

Check out Emily's new stand-up album, Pasta, which is out November 19th.

Also check out Emily's podcast on Maximum Fun, Baby Geniuses.

And if you haven't seen it yet, go watch The Mask on HBO Go.

With April Wolfe with Emily Heller.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 53: 'The Host' with 'Unlovable' Director Suzi Yoonessi

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Guests: 
April Wolfe
Guests: 
Suzi Yoonessi

The Host

This week we are so lucky to have the director of the new film Unlovable, Suzi Yoonessi. Her movie follows Joy, played by Charlene deGuzman, a recovering sex and love addict who finds solace in making music with the gruff brother (John Hawkes) of her sponsor (Melissa Leo). The movie that Suzi has decided to discuss is 2006's Korean monster masterpiece, The Host. While maybe not immediately recognizable as an influence, Suzi explains that director Bong Joon-ho's focus on character and relationships has had a great effect on her work. She and April go over the process of pitching a movie that's never been made before, and the kind of work that goes into those types of meetings. Suzi also elaborates on working with John Hawkes and Melissa Leo. She even explains how it was difficult to cast John Hawkes because he doesn't have an email address. And lastly, Suzi and April compare how both The Host and Unloveable take real elements from the lives of the filmmakers in order to create a truly believable and engrossing story.

Check out the trailer for Unlovable which is streaming and in select theaters now.

And if you haven't seen it yet, go watch The Host.

With April Wolfe with Suzi Yoonessi.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org
Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 52: 'The Skeleton Key' with 'Lez Bomb' Director Jenna Laurenzo

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Guests: 
April Wolfe
Guests: 
Jenna Laurenzo

The Skeleton Key

We've got a great episode this week with the director of the new film Lez Bomb, Jenna Laurenzo. While her film is a romantic comedy about a woman attempting to come out to her family on Thanksgiving, the film that Jenna chose to discuss is nothing like that at all! The movie Jenna picked is 2005's The Skeleton Key. While many have probably forgotten about this movie, we certainly haven't. Jenna and April discuss some of the more "delicate" issues that are brought up in the film - e.g. the opening lynching scene. Plus they touch upon the genius of Gena Rowlands and John Hurt. Jenna dives deep on the process of making her debut feature. She elaborates on how she was able to secure actors like Bruce Dern, Kevin Pollak, and Cloris Leachman for a film she shot in her own parents house. And she explains the lessons she learned from working with the Farrelly brothers.

Check out the trailer for Lez Bomb which will be in select theaters on November 9th.

And if you haven't seen it yet, go watch The Skeleton Key

With April Wolfe with Jenna Laurenzo

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters at @SwitchbladePod on Twitter. Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org
Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.