Watching Movies With Mikey


#1

Movies with Mikey is a movie critique show by Mikey Neumann, a Creative Director at Gearbox Software, that focuses on finding the positives in film and moviemaking. While I’m not a fan of his work in games, I am a huge fan of this youtube series, which is constantly walking tightropes effortlessly between celebratory and critical, funny and insightful, approachable and profound, absurd and the realest shit. It’s a show, for example, that will spout praise about how The Emperor’s New Groove’s diner scene is a ridiculous delight and whip back to the acknowledging how fucked up the movie is when it comes to cultural appropriation before lamenting on what we have lost with the death of traditional animation, especially from the company who continues to be synonymous with it despite only producing one in the last 13 years.

Movies with Mikey is a show that entertains, doesn’t pull punches, and has helped me enjoy movies that I love just a little more, which is about as much praise as I can give a show of its kind.

If you’re a fan of the series, discuss it below. If you’re new to it, I highly recommend watching these three episodes, which are the three that get to the heart of why I like the show so much.


#2

Oh, heck yeah.

MwM is one of my favorite shows on YouTube. It’s reframed the way I look at cinema and made me think way more about films that I thought I loved. It also serves as a bit of personal inspiration too – media criticism and commentary should make you feel things: at its best, can challenge preconceived notions one may have about something, and at the very least, it should shine a light on a thing that you may have been oblivious to. Mikey these things with an unparalleled zeal, and has helped me contextualize the way I approach my studies.

His The Force Awakens episode is the one I send to people when I’m trying to get them to start the show. It’s got a 100% success rate amongst the humans I’ve sent it to. (It also is the only episode that made me cry in my school’s dining hall.)


#3

Movies with Mikey is great! I love the way he can provide some interesting viewpoints in even the most overanalyzed of movies, and shine some lights on those that don’t get appreciation from the ‘video essay’ community.

I’d kill for him to do another Harry Potter video. His Prisoner of Azkaban one was not only great, it introduced me to Phil Collins! Make of that what you will.


#4

I love how willing Mikey is to take a swing on this really personal—sometimes bordering on ecstatic—form of film criticism, considering how open it leaves him to the easy, abundant criticism of not being objective and “trying too hard.” Producing a simpatico companion piece to each of these movies is a really ambitious goal, and it doesn’t always work all the way out! I do, though, always find his struggle to keep up with these movies compelling, an almost unbroken chain of thoughts that culminates in these stumbling, affecting attempts to draw it all together. His one on Adaptation impressed me with just how incisive he could make that parallelism:

Lots of other stuff on Chainsawsuit Original is good too, I recommend Plonft, Local 58, and


#5

Movies with Mikey is easily my favourite movie review show. His positivity is something sorely needed and his tendency to find love in almost all of the films he reviews is charming and heartwarming.

Also his speech at the end of Iron Giant brought me to tears, which is awesome.

My personal favourite is probably Scott Pilgrim or Zodiac.


#6

Oh hell yeah. Between Movies with Mikey and Every Frame a Painting I have a much deeper appreciation for cinema than I’ve ever had. Cinematography, editing, framing, all that stuff usually goes over my head but these shows do a great job of pulling out little interesting details. I’ve found new stuff to love in some of my favourite movies that I’ve seen dozens of times.

Anyway… I might never be your night in shining armour. ahem Sorry what I meant to say was… I might never be the one you take home to mother.

Weird. What I’m trying to say that I love Mikey’s humour, and how self referential it is and how I might never be the one who brings you flowers. But I can be the one, be the one tonight!

AND IF YOU LIKE CAUSING TROUBLE UP IN HOTEL ROOMS
AND IF YOU LIKE HAVING SECRET LITTLE RENDEZVOUS!

Ahem… sorry.


#7

Yaaay Mikey!

I’m big into my video essays about movies. There are so many people on youtube talking about movies and I’ve generally developed a loathing for all the Jeremy Jahns/Chris Stuckmann ‘movie critics’. I just dislike their jumpity talking head format, or indeed anyone who feels entitled to talk in front of a camera but say nothing of real note. Lessons from the Screenplay, Every Frame a Painting, Movies with Mikey is crack for me however.

I discovered Movies with Mikey a couple of months ago and pretty much watched his entire works in one night. Among my favourite of his videos is the one he did for The Lost World: Jurassic Park which nails why that movie is so underrated as a sequel to Jurassic Park.

He also puts forward a real strong case for Pearl Harbour. Which is something I’d never thought I’d come round to.

I was aware of who Mikey was with Gearbox prior to becoming a loyal subscriber. Been a fan of some of his earlier video stuff as well, for instance he made an online series with Anthony Burch called Anthony Saves The World. For the most part it had a kind of Joss Whedon snappiness to it - perhaps got a little too sentimental towards the end.

Also you should check out some of his fiction.The Returners was really cool.

He did write Aliens: Colonial Marines however… I mean I don’t know the complete circumstances of writing that story, maybe it was half written already because that game was in development for years, maybe he had to work within strict limitations from Fox or the game makers… but hot damn… Still waiting for him to tackle one of the Alien movies one day…

That Borderlands 2 trailer is still one of the greatest video game trailers ever made. I’m hyped for that game just thinking about it. Introduced me to Nero in a big way, a love that has yet to die. I think he edited it or at least coined the term Joy Puke. Either way, fucking awesome.

Dude has got a lot of love for movies and people in general. I’ve got a lot of love for Mikey.


#8

Long time fan of the series. Discovered only because I followed his often hilarious twitter feed. I make a point to share each new video as they arrive. It’s hard to pick favorites, because he’s improved quite a bit over time, but the latest vids in Princess Mononoke and Arrival were amazing.


#9

Through the use of that song along, he has introduced an acceptable appreciation of 1D


#10

Yeah, I love that he always goes in with the intention of finding something to make the movie worthwhile. I would have a much lower opinion of The Force Awakens without him, and I’m grateful for his incredible take on Interstellar, which deserves so much more than people gave it.


#11

Movies with Mikey is a delight - I got introduced to him back when he did the Chainsawsuit podcast with Kris Straub (I miss you, Chainsawsuit podcast) and have since followed all his other endeavors (he does a podcast called TV Crimes with Will Wheaton that is Choice).

His Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and Mad Max videos are two of my favorites.


#12

I love MwM. The Interstellar episode in particular is enough to move me to tears.

Disclosure - I think Interstellar is an unqualified masterpiece, and I think the people who criticize it for not being 100% accurate with it’s depiction of black hole physics are being ridiculous. As if Christopher Nolan was going to be able to solve the greatest unsolved mysteries in physics, problems that literally the best minds in the world have not yet been able to fully understand. Plus, it’s not a movie about physics, which will become painfully obvious after watching the MwM episode.

However - and I hesitate to bring this up given what he’s been through recently - there are times I’ve had to mute him on Twitter for awhile, because he can be a bit of of a condescending dick.


#13

I’ve really enjoyed MwM. I don’t know of any other YT series that I’ll make time to watch as soon as I get notified of a new episode.

I only started watching with his video on Moon, but I think I’ve seen most of the videos now.

“But did you know” might be my favorite bit part.


#14

I just recently “discovered” MvM, even though I’ve been subscribed to Chainsawsuit for a while now waiting for a new season of Portscenter. What brought me in was the episode on Arrival because he captured my feelings about this film better than I could. After watching that episode, I binged a lot of the series, and, while I feel that his editing style and performance can sometimes detract from his content and message, I find the series highly enjoyable.


#15

Oh my gosh yes. MwM is probably one of the best things on youtube!

Even on the few occasions when I don’t actually like the movie he’s talking about I always enjoy his videos. His unabashed enthusiasm is just infectious. He’s one of those people whose work I adore for being thoughtful and positive and unironic in its sincerity. It’s the kind of content I’ve found myself seeking more and more of in the past year or so.

The first episode I saw was the one on The Dark Knight (a movie that’s been talked to death for sure) after I saw Justin McElroy recommend it on twitter. And my favourite episode is probably the one on The Iron Giant. It defo made me cry.


#16

I leave that tab open on my phone’s browser so I see it every time I launch Chrome. I’m a fan.

His ability to tell me why I like a thing when I didn’t even know why, or even THAT I liked a thing, is uncanny. Practically every episode ends with me thinking to myself “Yes, you are correct Michael, that is exactly why I loved that movie, thank you for letting me know that, how did you extract that from my subconscious, you’re starting to scare me now.”

I think I’ve watched the Interstellar episode at least 8 times.


#17

I really love Movies with Mikey. It was kind of a gateway into film criticism (particularly in the video format) for me, though I still think he produces some of my favourite. I always come away from his videos with extra understanding for the films he discusses. My favourite video of his is most likely his analysis of The Iron Giant. It’s gets pretty real near the end but that is partially why I like his videos so much.

And shout-outs to Kris Straub’s contribution to the Chainsawsuit channel. I think all his horror stuff on there is just excellent.


#18

Read this in the Film Studies with Michael voice.


#19

Dunno if anyone saw this the other day, but Mikey put up a real brutally honest post about the last few months. It’s something worth reading, and although it is very, very sad it is also weirdly uplifting in its way.

That sort of honesty is what makes his videos so good, I think. It might be worth making a donation to MS research, if nothing else!


#20

Wow. That is… hard to read. I’m happy he has come to terms with his current state, but it is super hard to, like, picture it being real, you know? Like I know how bad it got from the video he put out before (though just guessed (until now) at the extent of how bad it REALLY got), but knowing he won’t be able to fully recover? It’s hard to accept. I will accept it, in time, but it’s hard to…

Fuck MS.