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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.

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9 Foreign Film Finalists

"Cheering for BODY AND SOUL or LOVELESS for the win. - Travis

"My two favorites, BPM and Summer '93, were left out so now I'm rooting for Chile's A FANTASTIC WOMAN all the way." - Peggy Sue

"THE WOULD... I'm ecstatic its profile has been given this boost." -Goran

What'cha Looking For?
Interviews

new Claes Bang Actor
(Sweden's Oscar Submission)
Nikolaj Lie Kaas Actor
(Denmark's Oscar Submission)
Hana Jusic Director
(Croatia's Oscar Submission)

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Friday
Dec152017

9 Foreign Film Finalists for the Oscar Race

by Nathaniel R

"The Wound" from South Africa might be the biggest surprise on the finalist list.The Academy's foreign film nominating committees have whittled down the 92 contenders to 9. If you've forgotten or never heard the procedure it involves multiple volunteers watching a certain number of entries to be eliglble to vote on them. The top six films advance from those ballots and the executive committee chooses another three which makes the 9 finalists. Then a final committee watches the nine finalists and votes to determine the five nominations. We correctly predicted 7 of the 9 finalist (you can peak here though we'll be updating that chart to reflect the official standings shortly)

A Fantastic Woman directed by Sebastián Lelio for Chile
In the Fade directed by Fatih Akin for Germany
On Body and Soul Ildikó Enyedi for Hungary
Foxtrot directed by Samuel Maoz for Israel
The Insult directed by Ziad Doueiri for Lebanon
Loveless directed by Andrey Zvyagintsev for Russia
Félicité directed by Alain Gomis for Senegal
The Wound directed by John Trengove for South Africa
The Square directed by Ruben Östlund for Sweden MORE AFTER THE JUMP...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Dec152017

In Context: The Contentious Making of "Frida"

by Ilich Mejía

The New York Times published an op-ed by Salma Hayek where she discloses how working with Harvey Weinstein, then head of Miramax, affected the production of her passion project Frida. The film, centered around the life of Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, was released in 2002 with Hayek portraying the titular character. In the article, Hayek relates her refusals to Weinstein's inappropriate proposals (massages, showers, sex) to his explicit sabotaging of the film and its release. Up next, we contextualize five of Hayek's most poignant tellings of how Weinstein's ruthless power machine compromised the making of a promising film.

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Thursday
Dec142017

"Ocean's Eight" Awaits

Chris here. While the world is continually bad, one of our sustaining mantras has been the promise of female ensemble heisting with Ocean's 8. The main refrain of this meditation / mindfulness exercise is obviously its stars - say their names with me and feel renewed: Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Sarah Paulson, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, and Awkwafina.

Well done.

We've got a new poster and a photo of the assembled crew to distract ourselves, but even this is just a hint of the fun to come (you can expect a trailer to come very soon, impatient readers). Bullock will be playing Danny Ocean's equally conning sister Debbie, so the opportunity remains for some fun crossover with Steven Soderbergh's trilogy. The film's big heist will take place during the Met Gala and juicy cameos should be expected. Ocean's 12 already made a "Julia Roberts pretending to be Julia Roberts" gag, but it would be amusing to revamp the bit here. Rihanna is queen of the Met Gala, after all.

But our new looks are decidedly less fussy than that red carpet extravaganza, with the poster giving us coats and shades mystique and the image below has the team mid-planning. What is Debbie Ocean's octad looking at in their projector? The endless news cycle? Something from the screener pile? The trailer they're keeping from us? Hmmmm.

Thursday
Dec142017

Blueprints: "mother!"

With the announcement of the Golden Globe and SAG Award nominations this week, we are officially in the awards race. So from now until Oscars, Jorge will be examining 2017’s most talked-about movies and their screenplays. First, he shows up uninvited at a party...

mother! is a fever dream. The stream-of-consciousness journey of a woman that just wants people to get the hell out of her space. It’s a biblical allegory, a metaphor for the destruction of the environment, a hallucination of the protagonist. It’s all of these, and it is none.

Watching the movie is a trip (take that word for whatever meaning). It’s more visceral than narrative. Trying to find a traditional, cohesive plot in it is useless, and it’s better to experience it through gut reactions of the vignettes presented. But how does the screenplay look? Exactly as you would imagine...

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Thursday
Dec142017

Into the Link-Verse

Dim the House Lights a conversation about those Sondheim auditions in Lady Bird
/Film why is Big Little Lies still competing as "Limited Series" when it has a second season order. The controversy is starting to bubble up
Cartoon Brew I didn't even know that there was ANOTHER new awards show but come to think of it there's always another new one, isn't there? We now have the European Animation Awards and they gave their top prize to Loving Vincent. This is not to be confused with the European Film Awards which also gave Loving Vincent Best Animated Feature
Cartoon Brew on the key points of that giant Disney/Fox deal. It's scary people. Now basically only 4 American-owned entertainment companies have control over America’s cultural identity. 

Forbes on the teaser for Into the Spider-Verse with Miles Morales finally making it to screen...
Indie Wire talks to the great actress Lesley Manville about Phantom Thread and Hollywood for women over 40
The Wrap ack. I totally forgot to link to this last week. In an unprecedented move The Academy added 'Standards of Conduct' to membership details after the explosion of sexual misconduct news this past month
Coming Soon the first poster and teaser for New Mutants
Out January 25th is when RuPaul's Drag Race returns
Vogue Philip Seymour Hoffman's partner Mimi pens an essay with Adam Green about living with an addict and the actor's final sad year.

List-Mania
EW a timeline of Nicole Kidman's most iconic 2017 moments
After Ellen a list of the best lesbian or bi movies of the year
• GQ Top ten books of the year and each author chosen gets to recommend a book, too. Fun angle! Do you have a library card? You might need one after this.
Variety Owen Gleiberman and Peter DeBruge's top ten lists
EW best and worst tv shows of the year
Out most iconic looks of 2017. It's heavy on music video ladies for some reason but there's some fun surprises like "Allison Janney with a parrot on her shoulder" from I, Tonya
CBC an A-Z guide to the year in queer: God's Own Country, Melina Matsoukas, and much more
THR top ten movies of the year from Todd McCarthy and staff. Call Me By Your Name all over the place.

Thursday
Dec142017

The Power of Reese Compels You in "Home Again" 

Home Again is out on DVD and Blu-Ray. Here's Spencer Coile... 

Home Again is not a particularly good movie. The film debut of Nancy Meyers' daughter, Hallie Meyers-Shyer, follows Reese Witherspoon as she deals with motherhood, a recent separation... and the three young filmmakers she agrees to let stay with her for an extended period of time. Standard fare, right? And it is, despite that third curve. The writing is a little too on-the-nose, characters do not feel fully fleshed out, and the editing implies serious cuts were made. Still, though, it is hard not to be won over due heavily to Witherspoon herself... 

Click to read more ...