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 


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"Thank you to all the contributors & commentors for teaching me about movies!" - Andrew

"This is such a wonderful list for how full it is of cinematic joy, not just the everything of Carol..." - Ben1283

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A History of... Rob Lowe

Today is Rob Lowe's 50th Birthday. This photo was taken only a couple of years ago for Vanity Fair...

To unearth the mystery (or at least to celebrate) Rob Lowe's continual beauty, undefiled by age, fickle series-jumping, or scandals. A completely true embellished history...

1964 Born in Charlottesville Virginia to a schoolteacher and a lawyer

1965 Infected by a infant virus, Rob Lowe goes deaf in one ear. To date it remains his only known physical flaw. MORE...

Click to read more ...


The Link World

Gilt City contest to see IF/THEN the wickedly talented one and only Idina Menzel's new Broadway show
The Wire is documenting the Kevin Spacey / Rob Ford feud
Instagram Madonna dresses up as Daenerys Targaryen, Mother of Dragons
Coming Soon 3D retrofitting continues for animated films and The Incredibles and Ratatouille are in process
i09 another "Let it Go" cover (they never end) this time using famous Disney cartoon voices 

Cinema Blend rumors circulating that Halle Berry has been cut from X-Men Days of Future Past. Less bad wigs in a movie is always a plus
In Contention Guy Lodge on the winners of the Miami Film Festival includeing the Brazilian thriller A Wolf at the Door. Could it be their Oscar submission this year?
Variety talks to Scarlett Johansson about Woody Allen and like Cate Blanchett she's level-headed about it

Ongoing Controversy
Felicia Day is upset, like we are, about the casting of a white actress as Tiger Lily though I'm linking up to this because even in the pro-ethnic casting majority people keep perpetuating the notion that it would be a risk and no such famous actors exist because they don't get the opportunities and in all of this so few people ever mention the fact that there IS a Native American actress who is beautiful, not completely obscure, and the right age for it who has already carried a movie. How can people have forgotten Q'Orianka Kilcher from The New World this quickly? She is 24 and talented and beautiful and this is ridiculous.  Obviously I missed my calling to be a casting director and slap sense into everyone.

I had already posted this on Twitter but just to remind everyone this is the movie she starred in and this is what she looks like now.

Q'Orianka in The New World (2005) and last year at an Oscar Party

In Development
Variety because there hasn't been enough film and television related to Silence of the Lambs, a new possible biopic of a psychiatrist who treated the man who inspired Buffalo Bill 
Variety casting on Greta Gerwig's sitcom continues. Adorable Nicholas D'Agosto from Masters of Sex on board
Coming Soon it's tough to keep track of Clint Eastwood's projects but after Jersey Boys he's doing American Sniper and it looks like Bradley Cooper and Sienna Miller will star as man and wife in the true story about a legendary Navy SEAL.
Empire Paul Feig (Bridesmaids, The Heat) is working on an original film musical !
Cinema Blend Jon Hamm and Zach Galifanakis will headline the comedy Keeping up with the Joneses about a suburban couple whose neighbors are undercover agents. No word yet on the casting of the wives

And FYI... our own Amir Soltani is launching a new podcast called "Hello Cinema" with a focus on Iranian Cinema. Here's the teaser...


Maureen O'Hara Wishes You a Happy St. Patrick's Day



Box Office: Smart Dogs, Ab'ed Warriors, and Speed Racers

Because animated films have good legs at the box office, Mr Peabody continued to walk up right and traded places with the muscle-bound warriors of the 300 sequel for first place.  

01 MR PEABODY & SHERMAN $21.2 (cum. $63.1) Tim's thoughts
02 300: RISE OF AN EMPIRE $19.1 (cum. $78.3)
04 NON-STOP  $10.6 (cum. $68.8) Amir's Review 
06 THE LEGO MOVIE $7.7 (cum. $236.9) Nathaniel's Review
07 SON OF GOD $5.4 (cum. $50.8)
08 THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL $3.6 (cum. $4.7)
09 FROZEN $2.1 (cum. $396.3) Review | Let it Go | Jonathan Groff Interview

The LEGO Movie is way way out front for biggest hit of 2014 thus far but I have to admit that I'm surprised that Frozen which is now 2013's third biggest hit, far exceeding anyone's expectations, is folding up and moving out of theaters for DVD already. If they had kept milking it a bit, it probably could have passed Iron Man 3's gross. You can only make that theatrical money once, really (unless they invent 4D and retrofit) But I guess they're eager for the DVD/BluRay cash. Most of the Best Picture nominees are still in theaters but like Frozen are on DVD very very soon. They're now losing a ton of screens but you can see their final totals here (Nebraska and Her ended the season as the lowest grossers and Gravity and American Hustle as the bonafide sensations).

The big story of the weekend is surely Wes Anderson's success. The Grand Budapest Hotel was welcoming aton of new guests with the week's best per screen average. It vaulted into the top ten despite showing on roughly 3,000 less screens than the other movies. The smaller story is that Denis Villeneuve's mind trip Enemy (reviewed) starring Jake Gyllenhaal² only opened on one screen? One screen? What were they thinking? It's so hard to get attention when you're only on one screen

What did you see this weekend, my people? I hope you were watching Eternal Sunshine and are joining us for Tuesday night's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot"?

 I'll admit that I fell into a weird Netflix hole of Scandal Season 2 because I could barely get out of bed. I guess my body finally collapsed from Oscar season adrenaline withdrawal? (I'll be fine tomorrow I hope). I don't respect Scandal exactly but now I see why people tune in each week. I had tuned in for a few Season 1 episodes and thought it was very poorly written trash. At the end of each Season 2 episode we turned to each other and said "Scandal!" in our best loud whisper faux shock voices on account of the, uh, scandalousness. So I guess in Season 2 it transformed into good trash tv. Either that or I lowered my standards. Which is possible with Tony Goldwyn and Kerry Washington steaming up my TV screen. The supporting cast though I find surprisingly  weak for such a successful show.



Review: "Enemy" Pits Gyllenhaal Against Gyllenhaal

This review originally appeared in my column at Towleroad

Have you ever read Jose Saramago's "Blindness"? That genius novel, about a sudden epidemic that renders the whole world blind, is hugely unsettling in content. It's also experimental in form. No character is named, the two protagonists are only referred to as "The Doctor" and "The Doctor's Wife", and punctuation is so scarce that there's nothing to guide you; you have to feel your own way through the blocks of words. The film version in 2008, which starred Mark Ruffalo and Julianne Moore, was too traditional in execution and couldn't capture the mad confusion and haunting power of the book. I haven't read Saramago's novel "The Double" upon which the new film Enemy is based but no one is playing it safe in the transfer this time. This is the kind of movie that feels like a true transfer of surreal text to visuals.

When I attended the Toronto Film Festival last fall, I didn't know what to make of Denis Villeneuve's hallucinatory thriller, which is as far removed from his other recent mainstream thriller (Prisoners, reviewed) as it could be. As far as I can tell the new movie is about a university teacher (Jake Gyllenhaal) who, while absentmindedly watching a video at home, sees a movie actor (Jake Gyllenhaal) who looks exactly like him. His initial shock gives way to curiousity and then to obsession. Things only get weirder from there... 

Click to read more ...


Recommended Instant Watch: "Pit Stop" 

Just a heads up that one of last year's best festival titles is playing on Netflix Instant Watch. Yen Tan's Pit Stop unfortunately never saw theatrical release but it won a few festival prizes along its way including from my jury at the Nashville Film Festival (Best Screenplay) and we've mentioned it a couple of times her via Glenn at New Fest and my interview with Yen Tan at Towleroad.

The romantic drama follows two lonely gay men in rural Texas named Gabe and Ernesto (Bill Heck and Marcus DeAnda) who are both struggling to move on with their lives after painful breakups. Their paths occasionally cross but they aren't aware of each other -- it's not exactly a visible or social gay community -- until the final act of the movie.  

If you've ever seen Yen Tan's Ciao (2008), which has a much different plot but a similar romantic trajectory, you know that he favors slow simmers to boiling drama. Those types of films are always easier sits in movie theaters when you're less distracted by other screens but I'm hoping people give it a shot for home viewing because by the end its generated strong and cumulative emotions. And bonus points, most of the actors are very good (indie darling Amy Seimetz is typically fine as Gabe's ex-wife). All that and it contains one of the hottest yet modest and emotionally moving sex scenes in recent years.

Plus this cut from Ernesto to Gabe, both cuddling with their pets, made my heart melt.

The cut is actually in reverse but I had to lead with the cat. 




A new Saturday tradition since it's the slowest day for the site and some of you don't visit every day *sniffle* and we don't want you to miss anything so catch up over the weekend, why don't you?

Save the Dates SAG, BAFTA, GLOBE, OSCAR ceremony dates announced
Endless Awards  Best Cameos - the film bitch awards continue
Your Vote? Beauty vs. Beast "cleavagey slutbomb" vs. "the chosen one" - why haven't you voted? I know you love the greatest TV show evah!
⬅ And yes I'm shamelessly trying to sway your votes
Some Doodling "Spark" Nathaniel draws the Marquise
Casting Problems More Leading Roles for Women and More Roles (at all) for Disabled Actors and Hollywood's love of White-Washing are three super-related topics that were big talking points this week round the web
Good Talk  "True Looking" this report on the season finales of Looking and True Detective garnered the most comments this week.
Most Talk "Podcast Finale" - the gang's all here to wrap up awards season
Most Important Oscar Coverage Index and a plea for subscriptions to keep the site healthy. We need about 290 more of you!


2004's best picture (not AMPAS stamped alas) turns 10 years old on Wednesday next week and on Tuesday night at 9 PM we'll celebrated by kicking off the fifth season of "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" - to play along just post your favorite shot somewhere with a short explanation and we'll link up.