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Terms of Service apply. And it’s a good thing, too. For a time, I was skeptical about such an idea — until the podcast Films to Be Buried With came along. Goldstein is on something of a professional tear at the moment as well. What is ostensibly a show about our love for the movies has, nested within it, a meditation on death and spirituality, which itself is concealing an exploration of our most naked fears, hopes, and desires. During this year’s quarantine, the podcast’s Wednesday releases have become the axis around which my days revolve. Both series have also received renewal orders from their respective networks, with Ted Lasso getting a third season before filming of the second has even begun. The more attention paid to a show like this can only help to increase its reach. And in perhaps the show’s most shocking moment, Miranda Cosgrove talks about how going to see Pitch Perfect 3 likely saved her from being murdered. In practice, the show acts like a pop culture matryoshka doll, each layer concealing a greater degree of intimacy. One can’t just name a film and move on without explaining the details surrounding their answer. Few shows have been able to strike a resonant chord the way Films to Be Buried does. Fear wears many different faces, and it’s not the exclusive province of horror films. Terms & Privacy Notice
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Listening notes for the top shows, from Vulture’s critic Nick Quah. “What is the first film you remember seeing?” “What film made you cry the most?” “What is the film you most relate to?” Their seeming innocuousness disarms guests — and listeners — and elicits a sort of autonomic autobiography. He is a generously comedic interlocutor, brimming with warmth and curiosity, unafraid to talk honestly and candidly about often dark topics in a charming and hilarious way. Photo: Apple+
But again, it’s Goldstein’s questions — the same dozen or so for every guest — that are the show’s X-factor. With the show framed around the conceit that each guest has died, it affords them a platform to have an entirely open, honest conversation about death, the afterlife, spirituality, and mental health. Currently acting and writing on Apple TV+’s Ted Lasso, easily the most pleasant show of the year, he is also the co-showrunner on Soulmates, AMC’s new anthology series (with Will Bridges, Emmy-winning writer for Black Mirror, among other credits). Oh, you like podcasts? Goldstein’s ascendency should have the knock-on effect of netting increasingly higher profile guests for the podcast as well. The straightforward nature of the questions also gives Goldstein license to dig deeper on topics than a traditional interview show otherwise could. It also helps that he is an adherent — knowingly or otherwise — to the Starlee Kine school of interviewing, eschewing the perilous doldrums of small talk, following instead a primal desire toward delving into turbid waters to delightful results. It is the rare celebrity interview show that sidesteps the many pitfalls of an otherwise self-indulgent genre, containing some of the most hearty laughs and honest, unguarded conversations. Brett Goldstein (right) with Jason Sudeikis on Ted Lasso. Sign up for Vulture’s new recommendation newsletter 1.5x Speed here. Sharon Stone — in addition to getting struck by lightning in her own home — hysterically raves about her love for the movie XXX and how it led her to stalk and harass Vin Diesel at a party. Much like the milieu which Goldstein and co. His abiding love of films has given him an encyclopedic knowledge of the medium and an infectious enthusiasm for its power to connect. With the show, multi-hyphenate British entertainer Brett Goldstein has created something truly remarkable: a lively podcast built around a stock set of seemingly simple questions that, in application, reveal a deceptive brilliance. The show’s success is squarely down to Goldstein (whose credits include SuperBob, and most recently, Ted Lasso), a uniquely engaging presence in the host spot. The most concise logline of the show is that each week a celebrity guest is brought on, told that they have died, and then their life is explored through the films which meant the most to them. Look no further than the response to Mandy Len Catron’s 2015 New York Times’ Modern Love essay, “To Fall In Love With Anyone, Do This,” which popularized the phenomenon of the 36 questions. There have been times where the show’s revelations leave you reeling. A question like, “What is the film that scared you the most?” isn’t asking about the particular film itself, but instead interrogates the kinds of things that each respondent deeply fears. There is a universality to the kind of things Goldstein is attempting to unpack with his questions, and it makes for a very special kind of podcast, one where both concept and execution soar. Format-wise, it’s a bit of a cross between This Is Your Life and Desert Island Discs, but not nearly as musty as that might make it sound. Photo: Distraction Pieces Network
As a society, we are willing to place an enormous amount of power in questions. These days, that feels like exactly the kind of thing we all could use. Kate Berlant gushes about her arousal while imagining the ugly sex that Christopher Lloyd and Joan Cusack’s characters in Addams Family Values must have had. During an incredibly tumultuous year, a program like this that actively endeavors to foster closeness and understanding is a balm. It laid bare a collective fondness for the notion that the right list of questions might grant us unfettered access to the soul of another. inhabit on Ted Lasso, the world of Films to Be Buried With is one of radical openness, positivity, and easy humanity, but also one which doesn’t shy away from the complexity of life. Past guests have included Ricky Gervais, Sharon Stone, January Jones, Jameela Jamil, and Sarah Snook, along with a hundred-odd other luminaries from the worlds of comedy and film. For someone who counts School of Rock and Muppet Christmas Carol among his all-time favorite films, Goldstein wears their influences proudly, blending youthful rambunctiousness and genuine compassion. In an early episode, comedian Nish Kumar encapsulates this perfectly in naming Inside Llewyn Davis, as the experience of watching it made him acutely feel the hopelessness of artistic endeavor against the cudgel of capitalism.