The Film Experience™ was created by Nathaniel R. Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. All material herein is written and copyrighted by Nathaniel or a member of our team as noted.


Powered by Squarespace
Don't Miss This!
Comment Fun

Marriage Story Review

"They're saying this is for Adam Driver what Kramer vs Kramer was for Dustin Hoffman. More about him than about her.  Scarlett, to me, is the open question. By now it's Driver vs Phoenix for best actor." - Melchiades - Andrew

"Mini-shutout to Alda, whom I loved and thought did absolute wonders in his what, 3 or 4 scenes. Great review!" -Alex

Keep TFE Strong

We're looking for 500... no 461 Patron SaintsIf you read us daily, please be one.  Your suscription dimes make an enormous difference. Consider...

I ♥ The Film Experience




Directors (For Sama)
Lulu Wang (The Farewell)
Ritesh Batra (Photograph)
Schmidt & Abrantes (Diamantino)
Jia Zhang-ke (Ash is Purest White)

What'cha Looking For?

The 12th annual FiLM BiTCH Awards celebrating the films of 2011.



Best Actress

Juliette Binoche
Viola Davis
Kirsten Dunst
Yun Jeong-hie
Charlize Theron
For playing one very specific woman and the ideas of her in alternating beats, magically providing a a heartbeat, even humanity to Theme. The camera stays on her face for minutes on end; she never wastes a single frame.

"Kind. Good. Important." without simple sainthood. If Viola wasn't this vivid (anger behind the good heartedness, exhaustion dragging at the optimism) her total reduction to nothing but a job description wouldn't feel so tragic.

For letting her innate dreaminess curdle into nightmare with heavy lidded despair and for risking such erotic charge to a death wish. For the perfect pitch of her half-assed coddling whenever anyone shows real need of her.
Many actors have portrayed the effects of alzheimers but few so richly. Jung-Hee aces this strangely dual journey as a simple soul who is closing down mentally and opening herself up to new ideas simultaneously. Rich, moving, utterly human.
What a showcase for Theron's comic gift. What a marvelous feat of uglification, this time through Beauty as crutch, armor, weapon. What a light touch portrait of mental illness, never diluting the sharp bite of the tricky tone.

Finalists: Olivia Colman for bruised soulfulness and authentic religious feeling in Tyrannosaur, Meryl Streep for technnical virtuousity and hints of pettiness, not just backbone, while grandstanding in The Iron Lady and Kristen Wiig for the year's absolute best line readings in Bridesmaids.
Semi-Finalists: Mia Wasikowska for formidable intelligence and perfect body language in Jane Eyre, Elizabeth Olsen appropriately emptied out and haunting in Martha Marcy May Marlene, Adepere Oduye for raw new skin feeling without ever overplaying and losing sight of the characters quiet timidity in Pariah and Anna Paquin for "strident" self-absorption and those raggedy moodswings of brain, heart and hormones in Margaret

Insanely competitive category this year...The finalists would make such a worthy roster and there's even more women of note just beyond the semi-finalists (including some obvious Oscar players). LOVING IT. More years like this one, please!


Best Actor

Jean Dujardin
Michael Fassbender
Ryan Gosling
Ewan McGregor
Brad Pitt
If any actor is working harder for their films success, please show him to me. A spirited, funny, potent, mega-watt star turn. The Gene Kellyisms are a perfect fit in spirit for The Artist also tips its hat to the next great movie form.
Forget the nudity. The daring thing here is keying in to Brandon's weakness, his very helplessness - anathema to male stars - as scar tissue from his sexual mojo and untreated psychic pain. Heartbreaking potent work.
Masculine star turns often harness the erotic challenge of stoicism. Very few refuse to coast on charisma. The brilliance of the work is knowing the Driver is both unnerving and unnerved by his situation. Improves on every viewing.
Male film stars rarely get credit for nuanced facility with romantic drama and illumination of tender feeling. Let's acknowledge his gift for it. One of our best actors giving one of his best performances: intuitive, soulful, and always connected to scene partners.
Never undervalued as a "star" he's routinely underappreciated as an actor. He uses all of his gifts here, the golden boy sheen, the physical creativity, the ease and confidence to underplay big moments. Just wonderful.
Finalist: Woody Harrelson fiery, clever, carnal and bold in Rampart
Semi-Finalists: Andy Serkis the Lillian Gish/Marlon Brando of mo-cap proves invaluable to the emotional success of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Tom Cullen and Chris New play an organic, sexy and authentic feeling duet in Weekend, Ralph Fiennes aflame with pride, aggression and Mama in Coriolanus, Michael Shannon uses those expressively spooked eyes to great effect in the storm-warnings of Take Shelter and Peymoan Moadi for self-sabotaging stubborness and gradations of guilt in A Separation.


Best Supporting Actress

Sarah Bayet
Jessica Chastain
Melissa McCarthy
Carey Mulligan
Vanessa Redgrave
Razieh is buried in pounds and pounds of fabric and even more burdened by her intellectual limitations but Bayet's naked acting reveals so much of this proud, scared, religious sealed off woman.
She nails Celia's openhearted naivete but better yet understand how it informs everythign else: giddy delight, her pain and even her easy strength "I'm fine right here." / "I'd give it right back to him."
For creating one of the year's most indelible characters and, like Wiig, getting big laughs through not just physicality but character. It's broad but she knows when to zero in on character
"New York New York" aside what she's really singing is a duet with Fassbender. Her low hum of need, messy runs of feeling, an open wound aria make for a thrilling dischordant duet.
Redgrave is one of the world's best actors and here's a full fiery freak role again at last. Her scary sadism and willful Oedipal enabling fascinate. When she 'sups on anger' you'll choke on it.

Finalists: Janet McTeer opens Albert Nobbs's eyes to possibility and also expands the movie's horizons by really seeing Albert Nobbs in a way nothing else in the film can; Rose Byrne reveals a noteworthy and previously unexplored comic gift. She's Bridesmaids secret weapon; Yun Yeo-Jong spikes The Housemaid with seen-it-all fizz even while collapsing with the S.K.I.D.S
Semi-Finalists: Jessica Chastain expands an underwitten role with Take Shelter (interview); Octavia Spencer provides The Help with some of its spikiest comic beats; While it's difficult to single anyone out in Margaret's fine cast, Jeannie Berlin is a welcome unique presence as she struggles to supresses sadness, fury, and to deal with the business at hand; Dagmara Dominczyk provides a warm sensual counterpoint to Vera Farmiga's more cerebral spiritual searching in Higher Ground (interview)


Best Supporting Actor

Viggo Mortensen
Patton Oswalt
Brad Pitt
Christopher Plummer
Corey Stoll
His Cronenberg collaboration continues to reap rangey rewards. Viggo slyly charts the way Freud's ego constantly rubs against his professional concerns and is rubbed wrong by Jung. Bonus Points: Watching Jung eat. Young Adult might be impenetrable given Mavis' inabilities to connect if it weren't for Patton's great chemistry with Charlize. He's funny and touching... Bonus Points: but never shies away from Matt's own self-pitying maneuvers. Actors don't get enough credit for serving auteurial visions. Pitt makes all of Mr O'Brien's baggage lifetime heavy. Bonus Points: Even the way he touches his sons, has the volatility of true character, rough, loving and confused parenting.  Plummer has often played sinister authoritarian figures but in a late career best turn, he's the opposite: a receptive student of life and love. It's a buoyant incredibly touching portrait of a man who never gave up. Bonus points: "House Music" Woody's time hopping life lessons (live in the now!) finds its charming comedic peak in Stoll's deliciously pompous projection of Ernest Hemingway. He's not the man but the words on the page. Bonus points: That monologue is A+, right?
Finalists: Benedict Cumberbatch - Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Kenneth Branagh - My Week With Marilyn, Shahab Hosseini - A Separation
Semi-Finalists: Hunter McCracken - The Tree of Life, John Hawkes - Martha Marcy May Marlene, Jonah Hill - Moneyball


[You can find a menu to the last two years of awards to your right in the sidebar.]