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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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"Best known as pudgy British aristocrat Matthew Crawley on Downton Abbey' Pudgy? How very Dowager Countess of you.- par

""from Jimmy Stewart to Terminator" - HA! LOVE this! And boy I loved this movie, I hope all the Downton fans flock to the theaters to see it." - jose



Beauty vs. Beast


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Burning Questions: Are We Ignoring Wes Anderson's Dark Side?

Michael C. here to try to look past the standard take on one of our leading filmmakers. 

Steve Zissou: This is going to hurt.

I have decided that I am no longer interested in reading reviews of Wes Anderson films that contain the word “quirky” in the opening paragraph. Same goes for “twee”.

Over and over I read that, what do you know, Wes Anderson has gone and made another Wes Anderson movie. It’s about time, don’t you think, that people take a more substantive look at a one of the most distinctive bodies of work of the last two decades? A body of work whose deeper currents are often ignored amid the same old talk about flat compositions and diorama sets. Anderson’s movies have a lingering impact that defies those would dismiss his carefully composed world as emotionally detached. Right below that carefully composed surface are the deeper currents of a director preoccupied with death, loss, and alienation.

With all the focus on his signature colorful style are we ignoring Wes Anderson’s dark side? 

Click to read more ...


Review: "Snow White and the Huntsman"

This article was originally published in my movie column at Towleroad

"Fairy tale revisionism" has been rapidly climbing the Hollywood idea chart. In the past few years we've seen Alice in Wonderland, Rapunzel in Tangled, Red Riding Hood, and Snow White in Mirror Mirror (reviewed here).  There are several more on the way including Angelina Jolie as Maleficent terrorizing Sleeping Beauty Elle Fanning. This weekend Snow White returned to theaters for the second time in three months. Her timing is apt since the apple-munching princess is celebrating her 75th big screen anniversary (Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs premiered in 1937). Why so many fairy tales? Modern Hollywood thrives on branding so the more familiar the movie before it arrives the better. And what's more familiar than fairy tales?

Tale as old as time. 
True as it can be…  ♫

Oops wrong fairy tale. Regret to inform that Snow White and the Huntsman does not have a theme song sung by Angela Lansbury but let's borrow that song anyway as framing device. Snow White and the Hunstman does have a theme song but it's a less catchy dirge-like ballad. One of the seven dwarves coughs it out at a funeral until Florence and the Machine take over on the soundtrack as the heroes rise up against evil Queen Ravenna (Charlize Theron) in montage. 

But we're getting ahead of ourselves. If you can suspend your disbelief that Kristen Stewart is "the fairest of all them all" in a beauty contest with Charlize Theron, read on...

Click to read more ...


Seven ways that waiting for a new James Bond is exactly like waiting for a new Woody Allen


1. You can expect that the locale will change. 

2. You know the title sequence will bring back memories like an old friend or comfort food. 

3. You'll see new faces mixed in with the repertory company.

4. You can place bets on how many and which younger women the protagonist will sleep with. 

Woody Allen as "Jimmy Bond" in Casino Royale (1967)

5. You're forced to admire the longevity because this all started in the 1960s!

6. You've learned to let go of qualitative expectations because it's a crap shoot...

7.          ...Otherwise you know exactly what you're going to get. 

James Bond goes To Rome With Love on June 28th and Woody Allen Skyfalls into Shanghai on November 9th. I got that right, right?


Thoughts I had while staring at the "Magic Mike" poster

• I see no magic being performed unless Alex Pettyfer is about to pull something out of that hat.

• If this movie had been made in the 1980s or by Nicolas Winding Refn the blue letters would've been in pink neon.

• I keep wanting to spell something out. If you squint, Matthew, Matt & Joe, and Alex are spelling out Y.M.A but Channing is letterless. Maybe if you flipped Channing horizontally he'd be an "R". What does it all mean? R. Y. M. A.?

"work all day. work it all night" is kind of an awesome tagline. It's self aware. Movie, know thyself!

• If this movie shows less Joseph Mangianello skin than any random episode of True Blood, Steven Soderbergh has failed us all.

• That camouflage will only hide Matt Bomer if he's surrounded by thousands of male strippers in a muddy forest. Hmmmm. 

• Why isn't this opening for my birthday (June 6th) instead of June 29th?

The five most important things about this poster after the jump...

Click to read more ...


Box Office: Snow White and the Hulkman

Queen Ravenna and The Runaway as I prefer to call it seized the box office kingdom with ease this weekend. It helps when no other big movie dares question your right to the throne. Given that the last Snow White picture Mirror Mirror didn't open even half as well, it's left to us to wonder: What accounts for the fair princess's drawing power this time around?

Help us determine it!



Here's the estimated top ten (US) chart with discussables afterwards as to what people are spending their money on... and why.

01 SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN new $56.2 review tomorrow
02 MIB 3  $29.3  (cum $112.3)
03 THE AVENGERS  $20.2 (cum $552.7) Review
04 BATTLESHIP  $4.8  (cum $55.1)
05 THE DICTATOR $4.7 (cum $50.8)
06 THE BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL $4.6 (cum. $25.4) Review
08 DARK SHADOWS $3.8 (cum. $70.8) Review
09 CHERNOBYL DIARIES $3.0 (cum. $14.4)

Drawing by NathanielDiscussables
• The Avengers has now whizzed past The Dark Knight and the last Harry Potter film to become not only the top grossing superhero picture of all time domestically and internationally but the highest grossing picture of all time not directed by James Cameron .. (both records *not adjusted for inflation*) . If you adjust for inflation its performance is still spectacular. It's just outgrossed the original Spider-Man (2002) and has only one superhero picture left to vanquish: The Dark Knight. It'll surely do so.

• Speaking of behemoths, The Hunger Games (reviewed) only just left the top ten list and is but one week away from reaching $400 million domestically. It'll be only the third movie to achieve that remarkable feat this decade after Toy Story 3 and The Avengers. 

• The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (reviewed) continues to show terrific gams, picking up more theaters each week and barely dipping in occupancy (which makes you wonder if it can manage an Oscar run of some sort at year's end?). I attribute this, at least in part, to Downton Abbey Maggie Smith Fever.

Moonrise Kingdom had the best per screen average by far. But despite the collected star power and Wes Anderson's fanbase it's only in very limited release still.

What did you see this weekend? If it was Queen Ravenna save your breath. We'll discuss her tomorrow!


Twins: "You and I... we're exactly the same"

Since we're celebrating twins until the stars move on from Gemini, I wanted to give a shout out to the figurative kind as well.

Due to sad circumstances offline I'm way behind on "Hit Me With Your Best Shot"  though I did watch Joan Crawford in Possessed recently to catch up. Crawford's camp icon status got me to thinking about the best camp masterpiece in the past 25 years, one that we already covered in the first season of the best shot series. (Showgirls is hard-wired into my neural pathways so it's very easy to access). The legendary so-bad-it's-good movie pits "Goddess" superstar Cristal Connors (Oscar-worthy Gina Gershon... and I'm 100% sincere) against naive crazyperson Nomi Malone (Razzie winner Elizabeth Berkley). Cristal insists repeatedly that they're one and the same, virtually identical. Nomi vehemently disagrees but the movie itself is in Cristal's headspace through and through.

The best shot from the movie? Cristal, Nomi, and Nipples after the jump...

Click to read more ...


June is Gay Pride Month. Open Thread.

Show Me Love (1998)It occurred to me that despite all the series and theme weeks and whatnot that we do here at The Film Experience we've never really celebrated Pride Month. What movies or movie tropes with a queer bent or movie characters would you like to see discussed? We have so many things going on blog-wise but we'll try and squeeze a few in later this month.

Consider this an open thread. Go!


Link to the Future 

The New Yorker a memoir about growing up with B Movies
Aint It Cool News looks back at Alien Ressurection. The Alien franchise is on everyone's brain now that Prometheus is (nearly) upon us. 
IndieWire the cooking channel's Baron Ambrosia names his five favorite food movies. Not the usual comfort food answers. The Cook The Thief His Wife and Her Lover? Well done, Baron. 

Coming Soon The Avengers will come to home video as part of a 10 disc set of Marvel Universe movies. (Hey they gotta move those Incredible Hulk discs somehow.) Details forthcoming. One billion dollars at the box office clearly wasn't enough booty! 
World of Wonder Charlize Theron teaches us to walk like queens. "Just think MURDER..."
My New Plaid Pants today is my friend JA's seventh anniversary online. His blog is still great. 
In Contention Michael Mann will chair the Venice Film Festival this year 
Emerging Artist Contest Quentin Tarantino is hosting a contest for upcoming filmmakers although finding your own voice here means remixing and mashing film clips from Django Unchained and others... makes sense that Tarantino would want a new voice adept at mixing old voices (sound familiar?) but if you're a filmmaker this contest is definitely worth checking out. 

TMZ Lindsay Lohan on "preproduction" set testing out her Liz Taylor biopic look.
Awards Daily has the first promotional photos for Only God Forgives the Refn/Gosling follow up to the great Drive. Including this one...

Rope of Silicon seems that the Andy and Lana Wachowski have finally shaken off the Speed Racer blues with Cloud Atlas arriving soon and Jupiter Ascending which will "reinvent action" in preproduction. Channing Tatum and Mila Kunis will star.
The Mary Sue realizes that Charlize Theron is the coolest girl in the movies while she talks Mad Max and, uh, Game of Thrones. It's weird to me that people are still unaware that Charlize Theron is most awesome when playing herself... but welcome to Charlize fandom one and all.
24 Frames Kristen Stewart wants to make a new East of Eden picture, the James Dean movie being one of those pesky adaptations that sacrifices huge swaths of a book in order to make itself into a great movie. How rude of it!