Welcome

The Film Experience™ was created by Nathaniel R


 Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, unless otherwise noted. twitter | facebook | pinterest | tumblr | instagram | letterboxd | deviantart 

 

Powered by Squarespace
Beauty vs. Beast

Which JAKE do you love most? VOTE

Comment Fun

COMMENT DU JOUR
YNMS: "Room"

"One of the most frequent complaints about the Room trailer is that it gives away too much. IT DOESN'T." - ConMan

"Brie was brilliant in Short Term 12, hope she proves she is not a one hit wonder with this." -Anonny

Subscribe
What'cha Looking For?

The Films of 2014. The 15th annual FiLM BiTCH Awards

PICTURE | ACTING | VISUALS | AURALS | EXTRAS | SPECIAL | SCENES 

 

Best Actress
Marion Cotillard
"Sandra"
TWO DAYS ONE NIGHT
Essie Davis
"Amelia"
THE BABADOOK
Agata Kulesza
"Wanda"
IDA
Julianne Moore
"Alice"
STILL ALICE
Reese Witherspoon
"Cheryl Strayed"
WILD
 Acting as simply "being," all spontaneous response and deep-rooted feeling, even when she'd rather not feel. It's like the Dardenne Bros discovered an unknown non-actor who'd just lost her job. Bonus Points: How does she keep topping herself?
 A simply great Horror performance meets a superb dramatic delineation of maternal ambivalence and romantic grief like Stockholm Syndrome. Bonus points: How great is she at playing groggy & out of it ?
Her jaded Communist is the character that haunted me most this year. Every gesture speaking volumes and each line like a dare or a threat -- even the olive branches -- in this fascinating turn. Bonus points: Expert mapping of her shift towards her niece Moore's inimitable gift for placcid exterior with earthquake interiority gets a return-to-form workout as this woman who is slip slip slipping away from herself. Bonus points: "I have Alzheimers" she knows when to toss off a line
 Her best dramatic work, the superstar harnesses her sizeable charisma for this unusually internal journey of a very different. Her tears and the grace she finds are deeply palpable. Bonus points: That ineffable ending owes so much to her face
 

Finalists: Scarlett Johansson offers up one of the best auteur vessel performances in some time and deeply convinces as a humanoid that's not at all human in Under the Skin | Rosamund Pike's "Amazing Amy" seems to contain about 11 performances but some of them are just superb. A star is born. | Anne Dorval's Mommy is high wire full throttle theatrical, and sometimes comic, too but Dorval manages the slippery slide into deeper mournful feeling.

Semi-Finalists: Keira Knightley relaxed nuance and wonderfully self possessed in Begin Again | Emily Blunt proving herself the best action heroine since Angelina Jolie or maybe even since Sigourney Weaver in her awesomely magnetic Edge of Tomorrow star turn| Gugu Mbatha-Raw begins with the sexual exterior in Beyond the Lights but then starts peeling like an opinion with love and blooming self-awareness | Luminita Gheorghiu formidably intense and complex in the vivid Romanian drama Child's Pose | Elisabeth Moss owns the camera and her ever moment in Listen Up Phillip and makes you yearn instantly for plentiful big screen leading roles once she lets "Peggy" go.

 

Best Actor
Ralph Fiennes
"Gustav H"
GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL
Jake Gyllenhaal
"Lou Bloom"
NIGHTCRAWLER
Michael Keaton
"Riggan Thomson"
BIRDMAN
David Oyelowo
"MLK"
SELMA
Eddie Redmayne
"Stephen Hawking"
THEORY OF EVERYTHING
 Mixing elegant calm, once aspirational now innate class, abundantly comic but never crass carnal and social appetites, and daunting perfectionism, he makes it impossible to imagine anyone else playing the part. 
 His vampiric unblinking stare and relentless salesmanship mesmerizes. Plus foregrounding this sociopath's most human if morbid trait: curiousity
Bonus Points: The inherent soullessness of  catchphrases. 
 Revealing new things with each scene partner, while illuminating the baggage of lost stardom. A miraculous light tough juggling act of star persona, tragicomedy and psychological turbulence

Bonus Points: "Caw!"
For spiritual grace and thunder mixed with human exhaustion and worry. Especially impressive, subversively so for a great orator, when he's silent: taking the temperature of rooms w/ friends, wife, allies & enemies alike For conveying so much life, romantic feeling, and personality with his eyes. Plus expert mapping of increasing selfishness and physical decline
Bonus Points: Wary calculations & negotiations w/ Jonathan - those peas!
 
Finalists: Channing Tatum for his "monosyllabic mountain of Grace" - Streep's words from the Gotham Awards -- as Mark Schultz in Foxcatcher | John Lithgow for that lived in romantic partnership, subtle regrets and innate joie de vivre in Love is Strange

Semi Finalists: Timothy Spall Mr Turner | Bradley Cooper American Sniper | Alfred Molina Love is Strange | Benedict Cumberbatch The Imitation Game | Chadwick Boseman Get On Up

 

Best Supporting Actress
Patricia Arquette
BOYHOOD
Jessica Chastain
A MOST VIOLENT YEAR

Keira Knightley
THE IMITATION GAME

Rene Russo
NIGHTCRAWLER
Tilda Swinton
SNOWPIERCER
 For buttressing this boy's journey with maternal warmth and refreshing wit. For authentic exasperation and her lack of vanity both physically, aging onscreen and in performance.
Bonus Points: "I just thought there'd be more." She's just full of humanity here.
 She goes big movie star with gestural force and vocal flourishes for this portrait of a mobster's daughter gone straight but it's delectable, like a hit pop single with multiple hooks. Plus she subtly, smartly adds layers: this woman's bark is worse than her bite.
 She lends the film its most authentic humanizing heart and sympathetic soul, nearly justifying the film's abstraction of Alan's "otherness" to include her own gender-policed journey.  
Bonus Points:  "You said to do it under six minutes"
For showing us what we've been missing; she's a helluva lot more than Thor's mom. That hard shell beauty cracks when curiousity is piqued. Brief glints of desperation, disbelief, and the friction between carnal disgust and professional gain emerge. With her daring fusion of authoritative Thatcher-like sadism paired with anime-sized evil gesture flourishes, Swinton's Mason is instantly iconic.  I feared it was too much but in truth, I've never forgotten a second of this performance from our most singular actress.
 
Finalists: Erica Rivas comes rivetingly undone with heart and humor in Wild Tales | Carrie Coon is thoroughly engaging in her film debut as a sarcastic protective twin sister in Gone Girl | Rose Byrne aces what could have been a far lamer role in Neighbors with her loose comic inspiration and relaxed 'still got it!' sex appeal 

Semi Finalists: Kim Dickens - Gone Girl; Suzanne Clément - Mommy; Laura Dern - Wild / The Fault in Our Stars; Emma Stone - Birdman (There are at least 10 more women I wanted to list but I only allow myself top 12s... good year!)

 

Best Supporting Actor
Josh Brolin
"Bigfoot Johansson"
INHERENT VICE

Ethan Hawke
"Dad"
BOYHOOD

Kristofer Hivju
"Mats"
FORCE MAJEURE
Edward Norton
"Mike Shiner"
BIRDMAN
Mark Ruffalo
"Dave Schultz"
FOXCATCHER
Physically and character precise from his stance to awesome oral fixation and "evil shit twinkle" in his eyes. Delicious line readings! Bonus Points: Motto pank─ôki (a full ode to this performance here)
 He ably suggests a life offscreen but his primary contribution is an authentic arms-length love. It's as if he's watching the Boyhood with us, also with wonder, but intermittently able to shape it.
Hapless foils are easy to overlook but this viking is pitch-perfect as he tries to a) keep the peace and b) shore up his friend's ego while trying to escape complicity. An intricate and endearing balancing act.
 From his brilliant scene stealing intro he  takes no prisoners... and by prisoners I mean saves himself in this send-up of a difficult actor with a gargantuan ego. Consistently hilarious.
 For illuminating the tactile love and communication of this fraternal bond while revealing that he's ill equipped for a war over his brother's soul. Bonus points: That interview scene is A+ work
 

Finalists: Chris Pine displaying a heretofore unseen gift for physical comedy along with a more rewarding two-dimensional stylization as a Charming prince in Into the Woods; Shia Labeouf may be a crazy person but his evocative intensity in both Fury and Nymphomaniac beautifully suggests things about the characters that are significantly more interesting than what's on the page. Perhaps he's the right role away from a signature classic part?

Semi Finalists: Jonathan Pryce - Listen Up Phillip; Patrick D'Assumçao - Stranger by the Lake; Charlie Cox - Theory of Everything; Tyler Perry - Gone Girl; Paul Jesson - Mr Turner

*For those who are curious I consider J.K. Simmons and Miles Teller to be co-leads in Whiplash (and they both just missed the top 12 lead actor lists above)

 

NEXT