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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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"While it doesn't seem groundbreaking, I know I will watch it eventually because of the four legends in the cast." - Rebecca

"Adored both Bergen and Keaton (and Garcia!), liked Fonda and unfortunately, thought Steenburgen kind of drew the short straw here. Overall, had a ball!" - Andrew


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Thursday
May172018

Blueprints: "American Beauty"

Last month we dove into one of the most iconic shower scenes in cinema for April Showers. For May Flowers, Jorge takes a look into one of the most famous thematic uses of a flower in film.

American Beauty was at one point supposed to be titled American Rose. This is neither a coincidence nor an appropriate alternative. The film, a satire about American suburbia and the layers of darkness that society hides underneath their pretty but rotting exteriors, heavily uses the recurring image of rose throughout. Not just in the now iconic nude sequence with Mena Suvari. 

Roses appear through the script in many key parts, usually in places where a character is putting up a façade for the world, or when they are completely submitting to their darkest impulses. Or when those two collide. Let’s take a look at where the flowers ominously represent both the attachment and the repulsion against society’s “pretty” standards...

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Thursday
May172018

Michelle Williams in "I Feel Pretty" (and Your Favorite Scene Stealers) 

By Spencer Coile 

While it was not on the list of 2018 films I was dying to see, I found myself in an empty theater to see I Feel Pretty Tuesday. It wasn't perfect, but charming and breezy. Through it all, there was one clear standout: Michelle Williams as Avery LeClaire, the squeaky voiced, quirky, neurotic CEO of LeClaire Cosmetics.

With limited screentime, Williams manages to craft a complete, sympathetic, and hilarious character. It could have been so easy to turn Avery into a caricature, but while I was cackling at every single line reading and mannerism in Williams' performance, I was still as drawn to her here as in her darker, more dramatic roles. 

So let's take a moment to talk about 2018 scene-stealing performances. Williams aside, who are some of your favorites from this year so far? 

Thursday
May172018

Beauty Break: Gorgeous Norwegians for "Syttende Mai"

by Nathaniel R

The iconic Liv Ullman photographed by Sam Levin

Today is a big Norwegian holiday (the equivalent of their 4th of July) so let's celebrate stunning Norsk men and women from the movies, shall we? The gallery is after the jump...

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Wednesday
May162018

Stage Door: Disney's Frozen

by Dancin' Dan

Caissie Levy stars as Elsa

You can feel the audience's anticipation. Not for the show to begin, not for the star to come on stage, but for the act one finale, from the moment you step inside the St. James Theater to see Frozen. That's not necessarily a surprise, "Let It Go" being the kind of world-conquering hit song that feels like it's in short supply these days. But it is a strange strange thing to feel when you're seeing a new musical...

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Wednesday
May162018

Soundtracking: "Inside Llewyn Davis"

by Chris Feil

"I don’t see a lot of money here."

With that cold, unfeeling line, F. Murray Abraham’s notorious club owner dismisses Oscar Isaac’s Llewyn Davis after a crucial impromptu audition. In so few words, he communicates that both Llewyn’s hard times and the commodification of his art form are here to stay.

After a taxing hitchhike from New York City on the promise of this gamechanger opportunity, the forever beleaguered Llewyn finagles his way into this audition and performs “The Death of Queen Jane”. The bitterness of Inside Llewyn Davis calms for Isaac’s crystalline vocals...

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Wednesday
May162018

Stage and Screen: "The Band's Visit"

Hey Tri-state area readers! Only a few of you have come out to Show-Score's Stage & Screen events this spring that I've been moderating. Here's one last opportunity for you. 

I'll be interviewing Tony-nominated director David Cromer and Tony-nominated Book writer Itamar Moses of "The Band's Visit" this Sunday at 3:00 PM just before a screening of the movie that inspired the Tony nominated musical. We'll be talking about translating the film for the stage and then we'll all watch the film!

If you've never seen the Israeli film The Band's Visit (2007), you really must. It's quite charming and it stars the late great Ronit Elkabetz (of Late Marriage and Gett fame) and was a sleeper hit at US arthouses in 2008. It also won 8 Ophirs (the Israeli Oscar) in its year including Best Actress. You can get tickets here.