Matinee Manatees



A movie review and relaxation podcast for movie lovers who'd like some help falling asleep. Sluggishly hosted by everybody's favorite podcast hosts: a sedate pair of half-ton aquatic mammals who love movies and wax comedic and pedantic about them for hours on end. Come with and drift along?


  • Willow (1988)

    Willow (1988)

    22/04/2020 Duration: 03h38min

    Our patrons have spoken!  The winner of this quarter's sword-and-sorcery poll is 1988's Willow, directed by Ron Howard and starring Warwick Davis, Val Kilmer, and Patricia Hayes.  It's a fun little fairy tale and it makes very little sense and that's a lot of fun.  The manatees discuss the rules of magic, best wizard voices, and what even is a possum.  Have a listen, stay indoors, be safe, we love you.

  • Jumanji (1995)

    Jumanji (1995)

    23/03/2020 Duration: 03h19min

    Do you guys remember Jumanji?  The first one, from 1995?  Directed by Joe Johnston, starring Robin Williams and Bonnie Hunt and David Alan Grier? With Matinee Manatees alums Kirsten Dunst and Jonathan Hyde? Well, we like it. Float along for bonus tips on mystical board game speedrunning, bad car repair praxis, and possible alternative podcasts hosted by monkeys.  For free!

  • Top Gun (1986)

    Top Gun (1986)

    10/02/2020 Duration: 03h21min

    After some glitches, the manatees are back!  This time around they're watching culturally iconic Top Gun, directed by Tony Scott and starring Tom Cruise, Kelly McGillis, Val Kilmer, and Anthony Edwards.  And it's... um.  Well.  Float along with the manatees as they pine for an Iceman and Goose movie instead, discuss the merits of voiceover narratives in action movies, and detail why Maverick should probably be on a registry... and we don't mean the national film registry.

  • The Mummy (1999)

    The Mummy (1999)

    20/12/2019 Duration: 03h46min

    We're back, and for the cold season we're going straight to Morocco-dressed-as-Egypt for 1999's The Mummy, directed by Stephen Sommers and starring Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, John Hannah, and Arnold Vosloo.  Float along as the manatees discuss mummification hangovers, better ways to prevent resurrections, and yet another spec script!  Sam is sleepy and creates a band.  Ben gets mad about camels and game of thrones.  Neither knows anything about history.  Enjoy!

  • Batman (1989)

    Batman (1989)

    29/11/2019 Duration: 06h13min

    For our first 100% Ben-free episode, bat-fan Anthony (Batmanatee?  Fanatee?) has finally convinced Sam to watch 1989's Batman!  Directed by Tim Burton (with mandatory score by Danny Elfman) and starring Jack Nicholson, Michael Keaton, and Kim Basinger, Batman 1989 is arguably the movie that started the grim 90's superhero movie trend, and for that we owe it a lot.

  • Ernest Scared Stupid (1991)

    Ernest Scared Stupid (1991)

    22/10/2019 Duration: 03h24min

    For the spookiest month of the year (I guess?) the manatees are diving into halloween flippers-first with 1991's Ernest Scared Stupid.  It's Ernest!  Do you guys remember Ernest?  The character created by Jim Varney was ubiquitous during his heyday, appearing in ten movies, his own tv show, and dozens if not hundreds of commercials.  And now, this podcast!  ... For halloween!  Float along with the manatees for unique insights into monster hunting, treehouse defense system savings tips, and a forensic analysis of the similarities between Ernest Worrell and Freddy Krueger.  Also, trolls.

  • Evolution (2001)

    Evolution (2001)

    21/09/2019 Duration: 03h19min

    The manatees finally start watching movies from this millennium with 2001's Evolution, directed by Ivan Reitman and starring David Duchovny, Orlando Jones, Julianne Moore, and Seann William Scott.  It doesn't super hold up, but, y'know, whatever.  Ben rants about Evolution... and vaccines... and the shape of the earth.  Sam theorizes about Seann William Scott's career trajectory.  Both provide a tantalizing glimpse into the military strategies of a manatee nation united.   It's a good time all around.

  • The Crow (1994)

    The Crow (1994)

    01/07/2019 Duration: 03h57min

    This month the manatees are checking out Brandon Lee's tragic last film, The Crow.  Directed by Alex Proyas and starring Brandon Lee, Ernie Hudson, Bai Ling, Tony Todd, and featuring the triumphant return of Michael Wincott, the guy with the voice from Robin Hood! Discussion points include whether or not Shelley shoulda been the Crow, Sting (the wrestler, not the singer), alternate casting (Tommy Wiseau!), a spec script for a fifth sequel written by yours truly, and the practicality of pooping out bullets.  It makes sense, we promise.

  • The Fifth Element (1997)

    The Fifth Element (1997)

    02/06/2019 Duration: 03h39min

    This month the manatees are revisiting 1997's The Fifth Element, directed by Luc Besson and starring Bruce Willis and Milla Jovovich!  Ben and Anthony discuss age appropriate relationships, the logistics of murphy appliances, and the problem of too many Chris's to eventually solve that age old riddle: what do you mix with breath, sweat, sand, and matches to make lasers? (Hint: it's smoochin'.)  Come float with us!

  • Godzilla (1998)

    Godzilla (1998)

    10/05/2019 Duration: 04h10min

    Redesignated simply "Zilla" by insulted fans of the series, Roland Emmerich's 1998 adaptation Godzilla stars Matthew Broderick, Hank Azaria, Maria Pitillo, and Jean Reno, and wishes it was Jurassic Park, which it very much is not.  It is seventeen hours long and features several lizards.  Fish!  Boats!  Simpsons voice actors!  Guys named Jean!  All of these things are in this movie.  So.  There's that?

  • The Shadow (1994)

    The Shadow (1994)

    23/03/2019 Duration: 03h48min

    We're doing 90's remakes of 30's pulps again! 1994's "The Shadow" directed by Russell Mulcahy and starring Alec Baldwin, is a strange, strange film. Join the manatees as they gush over Ian McKellen and Tim Curry's supporting roles, start suggesting edits almost from minute one, demonstrate an embarrassing lack of nuclear physics knowledge, and repeatedly struggle and fail to not call it "The Phantom". Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? But the ice is slippery! ... Wait. No. That's not how that goes...

  • Tomb Raider (2001)

    Tomb Raider (2001)

    02/02/2019 Duration: 03h56min

    We're starting 2019 off with the moderately notorious 2001 summer blockbuster Tomb Raider!  Starring Angelina Jolie and Daniel Craig a little bit.  But is it really as bad as people say?  (Hint: yeah.)  Float along with us as we force ourselves to finish this movie and take frequent breaks to talk astronomy, dream houses, and virtually anything else we can come up with to not focus on this movie.  ... This one was kind of exhausting, guys.  But!  Listener choice episode coming up next month!

  • Interview With The Vampire (1994)

    Interview With The Vampire (1994)

    15/12/2018 Duration: 05h56min

    We're back on our vampire kick with 1994's classic(?) Interview With The Vampire, written by Anne Rice, directed by Neil Jordan, and starring Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, a young Kirsten Dunst, and Antonio Banderas for like a hot minute.  As a free bonus, you'll also get the manatees' grim prediction of when the book series may have jumped the shark, Sam's long war with films' portrayal of piano playing, and a summary of Ben's spec script for a vampire cowboy movie.  FOR FREE!

  • Tombstone (1993)

    Tombstone (1993)

    21/11/2018 Duration: 05h09min

    Quite possibly the most macho movie ever made, the classic 1993 western Tombstone stars EVERYONE, including several stars we've seen on Matinee Manatees before. Tony has suspicions about lightning, Ben accidentally reveals what he looks for in a spouse, both gush over Doc Holliday, and everybody has a pretty good time. Float along with us to a super tough-guy Arizona 1881 from the comfort of your own bed, listen from the beginning to hear how things are going with the charity or skip to minute 8 if you hate podcast updates, and enjoy!

  • The Phantom (1996)

    The Phantom (1996)

    22/10/2018 Duration: 04h50min

    1996's The Phantom is directed by Simon Wincer, stars Billy Zane, is widely reviled, and is actually awesome.  We'll tell you how, and it's definitely not only because we're in love with Billy Zane.  That's admittedly part of it, but.  It's only... it's only about 80% because we're in love with Billy Zane.  Float along with us for fun facts about the comics, embarrassing ignorance of basic geology, and a hypothetical casting choice that would have made this movie truly legendary.

  • Labyrinth (1986)

    Labyrinth (1986)

    02/09/2018 Duration: 03h14min

    Starring David Bowie and Jennifer Connelly, Jim Henson's 1986 classic Labyrinth holds a special place in a lot of '80s kids' hearts despite its rocky commercial reception.  But does it hold up to adults looking back?  Float along with us and find out as we explore optimal maze strategies, logic puzzles, and how many rock stars are actually in this movie.  This one wound up being a little less funny and a little more wistful than usual, so fair warning on that. Also includes bonus life update content at the beginning!  But you can skip to 17:00 if you'd rather just hear about the movie.

  • Wild Wild West (1999)

    Wild Wild West (1999)

    25/07/2018 Duration: 04h16min

    As a fairly obvious attempt to replicate the success of 1997's Men In Black, 1999's Wild Wild West underperformed pretty dramatically.  But does it deserve its bad reputation?  To find out, the manatees get academic in one of our most informative episodes ever, revealing secrets of the universe like the physics of how magnets work, why Harry Potter will never be as good as Lord of the Rings (no maps!), and the fact that chainmail was not a stunning new invention in 1869.  It soon becomes fairly obvious that they don't remember much from history class, which works out nicely, because neither does the movie.  It's, uh.  It's really something, folks.

  • Batman Forever (1995)

    Batman Forever (1995)

    14/06/2018 Duration: 05h51min

    Matinee Manatees is a whole year old, and to celebrate our first birthday, we're doing a super-sized three-host episode!  (It's an experiment, we'll see how it goes.)  We're hanging out with Joel Schumacher again for his infamous 1995 classic Batman Forever, starring Val Kilmer, Tommy Lee Jones, Jim Carrey, Nicole Kidman, and Chris O'Donnell.  Listen in for tips on the best places to get recruited into a supervillain gang, advice on how to trick-or-treat properly, the similarities between the Riddler and Mark Zuckerberg, and whether crowns or tiaras look better on manatees.  Also, we talk about Batman.  A little.

  • The Lost Boys (1987)

    The Lost Boys (1987)

    05/05/2018 Duration: 04h41min

    We're back at it with the vampire thing! Joel Schumacher's famous/infamous The Lost Boys (starring Kiefer Southerland, Jason Patric, Dianne Wiest and BOTH COREYS) is both a huge influence on virtually every vampire movie that came after it AND possibly the most 80's thing we've ever seen. But is it any good? The manatees dive right in and ask the really tough questions, like: Are DVDs really better than VHS tapes? Is the abandoned analogy in this movie about drug use or coming out of the closet? Would it be feasible for a modern vampire to subsist entirely on nazis? And, would you still even want to be immortal if they fed on poop instead of blood? (The movie brought it up, not us!) Float along under the boardwalk with us to lovely Santa Carla, California for 1987's summer classic: The Lost Boys.

  • Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990)

    Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990)

    17/04/2018 Duration: 04h50min

    1990's Gremlins 2: The New Batch is directed by Joe Dante, stars Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates, John Glover, and Haviland Morris, features Christopher Lee, Dick Miller, and Robert Picardo, and just might be among the best sequels ever made. On this there was no disagreement. Nervous about potentially boring the audience with a complete consensus, Ben attempts to manufacture conflict by announcing that he has beef with xenomorphs, New York style pizza, toll bridges, and cats; Tony gives babies a piece of his mind.

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