Nick welcomes Chicago Tribune Film critic Michael Phillips to the podcast for the very first time. They discuss Michael’s beginnings as a writer, his time reviewing theater in other cities, and his current role as film critic for the Tribune. Nick and Michael also talk about how “Star Wars” changed movies, for the worse, and that “Close Encounters” is actually THE real and important movie of 1977. They also talk about the best and worst films of 2023. It’s a great, smart, and fun conversation between two film freaks talking freely for the first time on this podcast. Then, Esmeralda Leon joins Nick to give a Michael Bolton update, talk about dumb warnings for dumb people, the satisfying art of sealing things (like a thickass bigass comforter), and the fact that there are actual Quiditch leagues in the world. [Ep202]