Monday, January 12, 2015

Listen To MOM

Maltin On Movies logo
Listen to MOM. By that, I mean Maltin On Movies.

MOM is my new favourite podcast on the subject of movies. The Maltin in the title refers to well-known movie critic, Leonard Maltin. Some of you may remember that he was the long-time resident film critic on Entertainment Tonight back when ET was actually about entertainment and worth watching. Nowadays, the TV show has devolved into a trashy, gossip news show. I assume this shift in direction meant that there was no more room at ET for Leonard's insightful and delightful movie reviews.

Whatever the reason, it didn't stop Leonard from reviewing movies. He also had his annual Leonard Maltin's Movie Guide in which he rated movies and wrote capsule reviews. It started in 1969 as a one-off and beginning in 1987, was published annually. Unfortunately, due to declining sales attributed to internet sites such as IMDb, it was announced the 2015 edition of the book would be the last.

Even that won't stop Leonard however, as he continually adapts to changing times. He's conquered television and print but now he has a new medium, the audio podcast, with which to talk movies.

Maltin On Movies is hosted on the Wolfpop network and is described as "Leonard Maltin discusses his favorite films—and hidden gems you ought to see--on a different theme each week with comedian co-host Baron Vaughn."

While I've been familiar with Maltin for years, this is the first time Baron Vaughn has popped up on my radar. From the very first episode, I took an instant liking to him.  He's a funny comedian who also seems to have a deep love and knowledge of movies. Pairing him up with Maltin was a good idea, otherwise the podcast would be a little too dry without Vaughn's easy-going personality and humour.

I'm looking forward to listening to many more episodes of MOM.

Leonard has also made a few appearances on another podcast called Doug Loves Movies, hosted by Doug Benson. One of the segments on DLM is a game Benson created called The Leonard Maltin Game in which celebrity panelists compete against one another trying to guess the title of a movie. The game is reminiscent to "Name That Tune" but instead of bidding how many notes it would take for you to guess correctly, players bid on how many cast member names it will take, starting from the bottom, to name the movie. To get the game started, Benson gives clues by reading a category, the year the movie was released, the movie's star rating as given by Maltin and its capsule review, also by Maltin. It's at this point that the game is open for bidding. For example, if a player bids four names, the next player can either bid three names or challenge the former to name the movie.  A player can also bid a negative amount of names in which case he or she would have to not only name the movie but also the names of the movie's stars in order of top billing.

Leonard also has his own YouTube channel that he uploads videos to occasionally.

Here's a top ten list of some of my other favourite movie podcasts. What are some of your favourite podcasts? Let me know in the comments.

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