Episode 18, January 27, 2017: Groundhog Day

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Groundhog Day is next week and what better way to celebrate than to delve into the Bill Murray classic. We have three different views from Chad's embrace of Dionysian decadence, Karina's thoughts of a depressing, dark film, and Brian just telling them to take it at face value.

Warning: Spoilers, adult humor, and harsh language ahead. Listen at your own risk.

Show Notes:

2DudeReview - Episode 18: Groundhog Day

I. Introduction
- Discuss site, Twitter, etc.

Ia. Our bet for the picture

II. First Impressions of Groundhog Day

III. Origin & tidbits

- Tom Hanks and Michael Keathon turned down the role.
- Filmed in Woodstock, IL. Puxsutawney was pissed their town wasn't used but did send people to make sure the ceremony was depicted accurately.
- The expressway that Phil gets out to talk to the state trooper is Amstutz Expressway just outside of Waukegan, IL. The same expressway they shot the chase scene in The Blues Brothers.
- Cowrote by Danny Rubin and Harold Ramis. Ramis' additions included a theological concept as he was agnostic, raised Jewish, and married to a Buddhist. Ramis expected backlash from the attention of theological interpretations but got the opposite.
- The original screenplay had Phil already in the time loop and began when he attempted suicide and found out he was still in it. Rita was also in her own time loop.
- The scipt changed quite a bit during filming to what we finally got to see.
- The radio announcers we hear each day are Brian Doyle-Murray (the mayor) and Harold Ramis.
- Bill Murray and Harold Ramis began a feud that lasted basically through the rest of Ramis' life. Only during the final stages of Ramis' illness did they make ammends. No one knows what the fight was about. It has been hinted it had something to do with Murray's anxieties during filming of his ongoing divorce.
- Murray ended up needing rabies immunization after being bitten twice by the groundhog during filming. He also improvised the lines, "don't drive angry" just before he was bitten.
- Murray's main necessity when being directed was whether he was to play, "good Phil or bad Phil."
- The Tip Top Cafe ended up becoming a bistro, a coffee shop, and a fried chicken outlet after filming. The bed and breakfast was a private residence but became a B&B after the film.
- Thirty-eight days are depicted in the film.
- All the clocks in the diner are stopped to match Phil's loop.
- The movie will be a broadway musical starting March, 2017.

IV. Points to discuss

- Thoughts on different theological interpretations of the film. Is it a film of self-improvement? Is it a Buddhist concept of spirtual transcendence (selflessness and rebirth as reflection of their own spiritual messages)? Does it follow the Hindu's and Buddhist's belief of reincarnation? Is the daily loop the Judeo-Christian tradition of purgatory? Does it follow the Jewish belief that Phil is to do mitzvahs (good deeds) and is returned to earth instead of heaven to do more?
- How long was Phil in the time loop? Ramis said during filming that the Buddhist doctrine takes 10,000 years for a soul to evolve.
     In the DVD commentary, he estimated it was around 10-years.
     Later he said 30-40 years.
     The studio hinted at two weeks.
     Co-writer Danny Rubin felt it was around 100 years.
     The Web site WhatCulture looked at time durations and came up with the estimate of 12,395 days or 34 years.

V. How rotten is Groundhog Day? Groundhog Day was given an % by Rotten Tomatoes. Do the following films fall higher or lower than %?

VI. Mention next film, plus reiterate the Web site and social media feeds

VII. Final Grade of A-F

Chad's Grade: A
Brian's Grade: A
Karina's Grade: A-