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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 | letterboxd

 

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2014
Mixed Media on Fruit, 9"x1½"

There is nothing about this I don't love.❞ -BRB

From the neck down, its pretty good. Guess your eyes weren't focused on his eyes.-Henry

Your next assignment: Shelley Winters on a Pineapple❞ -Jon

 

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Saturday
Jul262014

Live from Comic Con: Batman, Wonder Woman, Galadriel

Anne Marie here, sleep deprived and dazed after a night camping out to cover the big studio announcements for you. Folks, my group camped in line for fifteen hours to get into Hall H, and we still barely got into the back of the hall. Over 6,000 geeks camped out to see what Warner Bros, Legendary Pictures, and Marvel have to offer, so the studios are going to have to work hard to meet or exceed expectations. Here's what happened.

Cate Blanchett, Channing Tatum and more after the jump...

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Saturday
Jul262014

Review: Mood Indigo

Michael C. returning for duty. I'll be joining Nathaniel on the weekly new film review duties so you'll get two each weekend instead of just one.

My reflex reaction is to be protective of Michel Gondry’s Mood Indigo, and not simply because the director exists in a permanent state of grace for giving the world Eternal Sunshine. It’s because his latest film is such an easy target. To come branded with the moniker “quirky” is to risk immediate snide dismissal by those who would sooner face a firing squad than offer a stamp of approval to anything with hipster appeal, and Mood Indigo may well be the quirkiest thing that has ever happened. It is the black tar heroin of twee. 

This film is such a perfect culmination of Gondry’s work up to this point, it’s a surprise to learn it didn’t originate in his brain but is based on a novel much loved in France. Every frame is packed to bursting with Gondry’s signature handcrafted effects. Indigo’s hero, Colin (Romain Duris) lives in an apartment that brings to mind a French Pee-wee’s Playhouse by way of the Peter Gabriel’s "Sledgehammer" video (Ask your parents, kids). There doesn’t seem to be a single inanimate object in the place. Colin’s breakfast is a ballet of squirming stop-motion treats, and the doorbell scurries around the wall like an excited pet when there is a visitor. Even the piano is revealed to be a clever gizmo that dispenses cocktails to match the mood of the tune played on it. One cannot accuse Gondry of laziness. 

more...

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Saturday
Jul262014

NewFest: "Futuro Beach" and "Gerontophilia"

This double feature review was originally printed in Nathaniel's column at Towleroad

Help, he’s drowning! In good movies so don’t rush to the rescue. Both the opening and closing night films of this week’s satisfying NewFest (July 24th-29th), NYC's annual LGBT film festival in partnership with OutFest, begin with a drowning. Both drownings become romantic catalysts for the lifeguard, but the films couldn’t be more different in tone or purpose so it’s surely a coincidence. NewFest got the order right, opening with the dramatic punch and ending with a sweet drive into the sunset.

In the Brazilian/German film FUTURO BEACH, which opened the annual LGBT film festival Thursday night, two tourists are hit by violent waves. Lifeguards rush in to save them but only one survives. Donato (Wagner Moura) shaken up by losing his first swimmer, seeks out the survivor's friend, a sporty motorbike enthusiast named Konrad (Clemens Schick) to explain the process for dealing with the body. Soon they're angrily rutting, caught up in the disorienting and wrenching drama. Their hookup appears destined to burn bright and die quick due to its emotionally disconnected start and its rapid and frank visual presentation -- English language cinema still lags far behind European cinema in its depictions of sex; the full frontal here is presented as if it’s no big deal.

[More...]

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Friday
Jul252014

Day 2 at SDCC: Marvel-ous TV & Fox-y Filmmakers

Anne Marie cowering before GodzillaHello again! Anne Marie here, beaming to your computer screens direct from San Diego Comic Con. Though I thought it wasn't possible, it seems as though the convention got bigger and more crowded. So I learned my lesson and stayed far from the exhibition hall today. Instead, I wandered the Gaslamp District, saw some panels, and did some interviews. (More on those later.) But most of all, I waited in line. In a fun way!

Here are 6 new things I that learned today.

1) Marvel TV won't tell us anything about its Netflix shows. This despite the fact that Daredevil is already filming. Either they're saving that for the Marvel panel tomorrow afternoon (which seems unlikely), or Netflix hasn't yet gotten SDCC-friendly. Netflix has been absent from Comic Con this year, which was suddenly more conspicuous when fully five of Marvel's new shows were absent from the discussion: Luke Cage, Daredevil, Iron Fist, Jessica Jones, and The Defenders.

 

2) Marvel TV is throwing all of its weight behind Agent Carter. After Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s rocky first season (do any non-geeks still watch that show?), Marvel is determined to see its new ABC fledgling soar, so the first episode will be directed by Marvel president Louis d'Esposito, while the fourth will be helmed by Captain America director Joe Johnson. Agent Carter will start right where Captain America: The First Avenger left off, with Agent Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) navigating super spydom (and eventually creating S.H.I.E.L.D.) in 1940s America. I have to say, it's pretty cool watching a major studio put so much faith in a female-led show with two lady showrunners, Michele Fazekas and Tara Butters. (Butters and Fazekas share the title with Steve McFeely & Christopher Marcus.) Speaking of female-led shows, Lucy Lawless is joining Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., although even Xena won't be enough to coax me back to it.

3) Comic Con lines are really, really long. People have been lining up for Hall H's Saturday panels since noon on Friday! It's insane. To wit, here's an exchange I overheard (while waiting in line):

Lady dressed like Wonder Woman: Comic Con is just like Disneyland! Big lines, lots of colorful costumes, crappy food!
Gent with a Top Hat: Then where are the rides?
Lady: I guess the line is the ride!

4) 20th Century Fox couldn't quite top last year. In 2013, Fox assembled the entire star-studded cast of Xmen: Days of Future Past to talk about Xmen past and present. This year, the films on the whole could not deliver the same mania. Let's Be Cops gave folks a quick chuckle but little more. Zachary Quinto admitted that he did not play videogames while attempting to promote Hitman: Agent 47, which is based on a videogame. The Kingsmen got more applause on the wait out than the way in, mostly because con favorite Samuel L. Jackson joined new-to-SDCC Colin Firth in an Odd Couple-like pairing. Even Book of Life, despite a beautiful trailer, generated the most applause when Channing Tatum walked in doing the robot. (As they left, executive producer Guillermo del Toro was once again greeted by a chant of "Hellboy 3! Hellboy 3!)"

5) The most buzz came for The Maze Runner. It's based on the YA novel by James Dashner. When star Dylan O'Brien (Teen Wolf) was asked who would win in a fight, Thomas (his character) or Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games, O'Brien caused a gasp and a laugh when he admitted that Katniss would win. "He'd run away, but she'd shoot him with an arrow." Comic Con pro-tip: Always reference The Hunger Games or Harry Potter for immediate buzz.

5) Evangelists look a little different at SDCC.

 

Tomorrow I'll be in Hall H all day covering Legendary, Warner Bros, Marvel, and more! Follow me on Twitter for instant updates, and check back here for in-depth news as each panel ends!

Friday
Jul252014

Truth Tell: Barbara Harris is Underappreciated

A Happy 79th birthday to Barbara Harris. She hasn't acted in such a long time but she was often just wonderful on the screen with unique rhythm, energy and comic ability.

I'm not sure that anything about Alfred Hitchcock's Family Plot (Hitch's last feature in 1976) totally works but if you could argue that any of it does it's either the cemetery scene or anything involving Barbara Harris's performance as a con-artist psychic. The movie is frustrating since it feels half formed and its inarguably flabby:  every time you need the editing too tighten it up which would have made everything, including the memorable actors (Karen Black and Bruce Dern are also on hand), pop. It just keeps the scene going.

Barbara Harris's largest claim to fame these days is her Golden Globe nominated work in the original Freaky Friday (1976) wherein she switched bodies with her tomboy daughter Jodie Foster but my favorite Harris performance ever is her role as "Albuquerque" in Robert Altman's masterpiece Nashville (1975)

It don't worry me.
It don't worry me.
You may say that I'm not free. It don't worry me ♫ 

 I'd be okay with the entire 1975 Supporting Actress Oscar lineup just being ladies from Nashville, all told. 

Exit Music. Here's Barbara Harris doing bits from "On a Clear Day You Can See Forever," a role she originated on Broadway in 1965 to the tune of a Tony nomination before Barbra Streisand took over in the film version five years later.