Throwback Thursday – ep 27 The “Saw” Franchise

For James Wan, director, in the beginning was Saw. This first grisly, mind-bending thriller/horror film didn’t gross all that much but it spawned many many sequels making the franchise one of the most successful in the horror genre. In this podcast, we discuss the entire Saw franchise in detail, brain crunching traps included. Don’t miss this episode. Below are the stats on the film that started it all.


One of the features of Saw that truly sets it apart is the challenges and traps that are part of the game. It’s no fun, make no mistake, to somehow avoid a bear trap crushing your skull and that’s just one of the grisly inventions in the film. But there is a battle of intellect going on here. Saw says those who do not appreciate life don’t deserve life. Interesting. I wonder how we would fare?

Ready? Do you want to play a game?

We hope you enjoy the podcast.

Damien’s Netflix Pick – Tropic Thunder (2008)

You don’t have to be a fan of war movies to get the humor here, but it helps! You’ve need seen one quite like this. It features a star studded cast including Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr. It’s actors pretending to be in a movie pretending to be about Vietnam. The jokes are funny because they’re taboo. Don’t miss this one. It’s streaming now on Netflix.

Tropic Thunder

Please leave me a comment with your impressions or just to let me know if you want to see it! I’d love to start a dialog in this film with you.

“Through a series of freak occurrences, a group of actors shooting a big-budget war movie are forced to become the soldiers they are portraying.” -IMDB


Ben Stiller Tugg Speedman – Hot LZ
Jack Black Jeff Portnoy – Hot LZ
Robert Downey Jr. Kirk Lazarus
Jeff Kahn Snooty Waiter – Fatties Trailer

Directed by

Ben Stiller

Written by

Justin Theroux, Ben Stiller

Other Info

Action, Comedy
Wed 13 Aug 2008 UTC
IMDB Rating: 7.0

Talking Stars Episode 54 Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Spoilers will come up during this show. Today we look into the latest Marvel offering The Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, did this sequel come off or will it just fall into the standard sloppy sequel?

Darren – Movie Reviews 101


Damien – Riley on Film
Becky – Film Music Central
Renate – Popcorn & Film


Actor Focus

Today marks the release of our first Actor Focus post, and to kick things off, we’re going to be taking a look at Nicole Kidman. With her new film, The Beguiled, coming out soon, it seemed only right for us lot from Talking Stars to share our thoughts on some of her work.


My first pick is the HBO miniseries that Kidman recently starred in, Big Little Lies. I watched the first episode not expecting to like the show, but was immediately sucked in by the wonderful storytelling and mystery surrounding the characters. Kidman gave us all a brilliant performance as Celeste Wright, with a number of people now calling for her to be nominated for an Emmy for her role. It was a gripping show to watch, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who hasn’t seen it yet.
Continue reading “Actor Focus”

Throwback Thursday – reblog of our episode on Suicide Squad and The Lesson

This appeared first as: Talking Stars Podcast S01 E10: ‘The Lesson’ And ‘Suicide Squad’

Hi all. I’m pleased to bring you this encore podcast of 2 movies with distinct weirdness and gore. Well, one has gore. I hope you enjoy this throwback! -Damien

*This episode contains spoilers.

In this, our 10th episode of the podcast, we, Darren and Damien, review two films: Suicide Squad is the mega high budget action film of the Summer and The Lesson is a low budget, independent horror film from last year. Listen to the podcast and see how they measure up.

Starring: Margot Robbie, Jared Leto, Will Smith, Joel Kinnaman, Cara Delevingne, Jai Courtney, Jesse Eisenberg, Viola Davis, Jay Hernandez
Genres: Action
Directed By: David Ayer
Studio: Warner Bros.
MPAA Rating

The Lesson (2015)
Cast: Robert Hands as Mr. Gale
Evan Bendall as Fin
Michaela Prchalová as Mia
Directed by: Ruth Platt
Written by: Ruth Platt
Other Info
Horror, Thriller
Unrated Contains scenes of extreme violence.
1h 37min

Dear Listeners,

We’re curious what you think of these films and our podcast. Do leave us a comment if you have the time. As always, if you would like to be on the show or you have a film, actor, or genre you’d like to see us cover, leave us a comment and we’ll get back to you promptly.

If you want to contact us you can do so at:

Damien Riley
Riley Central –
Twitter – @rileyonfilm
Email –

Darren Lucas
Movie Reviews 101 –
Twitter – @newguyreview101
Facebook –

Talking Stars Episode 53 Cinema Manager – Sports Heptathlon Draft

NON-Spoiler Show. Continuing the sports blogathon hosted by Kira and Josh, we are going to have ourselves a good old fashion draft to select 7 sports movies to show in a fictional cinema to show over one week to see who gets the most tickets sold, each player will have to pick 7 different sports too. We would like you to come and vote for who you think has made the best team.


Host – Darren – Movie Reviews 101


Damien – Riley on Film
Kira – Film and TV 101
Josh – Reffing Movies

The Teams


  • Nacho Libre
  • Here Comes the Boom
  • Breaking away
  • McFarland USA
  • Kicking and Screaming
  • Rudy
  • Big Blue


  • Invicitus
  • Eddie the Eagle
  • Any Given Sunday
  • Rush
  • The Fighter
  • The Wrestler
  • Cool Runnings


  • Warrior
  • Creed
  • The Crash Reel
  • Dodgeball
  • Gridiron Gang
  • Foxcatcher
  • Shaolin Soccer


  • Cars
  • The Big Lebowski
  • Remember the Titans
  • Point Break
  • Blades of Glory
  • Escape to Victory
  • The Descent

Reckless (2015)

Movie Reviews 101

recklessDirector: Mora Stephens

Writer: Mora Stephens, Joel Viertel (Screenplay)

Starring: Patrick Wilson, Lena Headey, Ray Winstone, Richard Dreyfuss, John Cho, Dianna Agron, Christopher McDonald, Alexandra Breckenridge


Plot: A family man has it all until he risks losing everything due to his inability to fight off his obsessive temptation for other women.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Strong Thriller


Story: Reckless starts as we meet Federal Prosecutor Sam Ellis (Wilson) who is on the verge of a bright political future. When Sam’s latest case may require the witness to be a high earning former escort he finds himself drawn into the website and with his wife Jeannie (Headey) away takes the risk and calling for an escort.

When Sam decides to move on with his political career to become District Attorney but his obsession…

View original post 507 more words

#52 Repo the Genetic Opera – Film Club – Darren’s Pick

Spoiler Show. In what is my (Darren) second choice for the Film Club, I picked one of my guilty pleasures, Repo! The Genetic Opera.

repoThis film centers around the idea that in the near future you can get body part transplants for a price but when you stop paying you will have them taken from you, all while having an opera background to the whole story. it would be fair to say we have mixed opinions on this film so come and see who did or didn’t enjoy this film.

Host – Darren – Movie Reviews 101


Damien – Riley on Film
Kira – Film and TV 101

Films Covered

  • Repo the Genetic Opera

Talking Stars Episode 51 – Actor Focus Bill Paxton

Today we return to an actor focus, we focus on the late, great Bill Paxton who sadly passed away earlier this year.


In this show we may get into a few spoilers but we are trying to avoid any major ones. We are looking at this great actor’s work through the years with Movie Rob joining us for the discussion. Rob and myself both pick a film to try and sell to Kira to watch.

Host – Darren – Movie Reviews 101



With a special message from – Damien – Riley on Film

Films Covered

  • Aliens
  • Near Dark
  • Twister
  • Titanic
  • Frailty
  • Tombstone
  • Nightcrawler
  • Apollo 13
  • Thunderbirds
  • True Lies

#50 Movie Fights!

We’re pleased to present you with a discussion of sport films Million Dollar Baby and Hoosiers in a mock sports competition format.

img_1714-2Today we had Josh from Reffing Movies hosting the show. It’s a fiesty one with Kira and Damien battling it out over their respective films. Both films had to be in keeping with the sports theme of Kira and Josh’s current “Play to the Whistle” Blogathon. In one corner, Damien has Hoosiers, a basketball drama starring Gene Hackman and Barbara Hershey.

Damien and Kira talk trash like professional wrestlers in he show, it’s a lot of fun (for us anyway). Hope you’ll have a listen! Tell us what you think. We would really like to get some comments from you listeners so please don’t be shy and if you think you’d like to be on our podcast, let us know that as well! Thank you very much for listening and participating through commenting.