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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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Dreamworks Animation Pt 2: The Fall

"I loved this article. It reads like vintage EW, back when they relished the behind-the-scenes stories of Hollywood and the studios." -John T

"Dreamworks should not have oversaturated the animation market. Home is Dreamworks 31st animated film. Do you know what is Walt Disney Animation's 31st film? Aladdin. It took Disney over 5 decades to get there." -Chinoiserie

Part 1 here if you missed it



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Tues Top Ten: Tarantino's Toes

A dark Cinderella moment in "Inglourious Basterds"Denny, back again after dancing to Chicago this weekend. When Nathaniel was looking for suggestions to kick off Tarantino Week, I immediately suggested a piece (or pieces) called "Tarantino’s Toes," in honor of his position as the world’s foremost foot fetishist. I was half-joking, but the alliteration was simply too much to walk away from. Little did I know what I was getting myself into. How does one even begin to rank the many, many feet Tarantino has filmed? Does one go by the height of the arch? The length? The width?

… Sorry. I just had to run to the sink. I’m better now.

Actually, on re-watch, I found that, while they aren’t always plot devices, Tarantino does actually use feet to illuminate his themes and charact… Sorry. I just can’t take this seriously. We’re talking about FEET for frak’s sake! To wit, being as non-pervy as I possibly can, my completely arbitrary list of...

Tarantino’s Top Ten Toes

Honorable MentionMia’s foot massage in Pulp Fiction
We don’t actually see it onscreen, so I didn’t consider it eligible, but Jules’s monologue about the ultimately deadly foot massage that “Tony Rocky Horror” gave to Mia Wallace is pretty killer. That, according to Mia, the foot massage never even happened makes it even more intriguing.

10 O-Ren Ishii in Kill Bill, Vol. 1
They’re only glimpsed for a split second, but the sight of Lucy Liu’s O-Ren running down a table just before slicing off the head of the one member of the crime council who dissents to her new leadership in one swift, clean cut, is one of the film’s best surprises. And on repeat views, it only gets funnier.

more little piggies after the jump

Click to read more ...


Reader Spotlight: Andy in Boston

It's Andy !It's "Reader Appreciation Month". So we're talking to a reader a day. Get to know The Film Experience community. Today we're talking to Andy Hoglund a '20something living that rock star life'. He writes for The Inclusive

What's your first movie memory?

ANDY: When I was 4 my dad took me to a screening of Pinocchio. I know I probably had watched movies before then (Mary Poppins on VHS), but this is my first legitimate memory of going to the movies. Sitting in a darkened theater, fully immersed -- there’s really nothing comparable to it, I’d say.

I was infatuated with the Universal Horror monster movies. Dracula, Frankenstein, The Wolf Man. I still remember – at 4 – watching AMC’s 2pm Monster movie every Saturday. It is rumored that I have seen Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man over 50 times.  I actually once sent Vincent Price a letter when I was in the first grade. He responded back with a signed autograph photo. I still have it hanging in my bedroom along with a picture I drew of him.  Can you imagine a kid who can’t even read knowing who Basil Rathbone and Lionel Atwill is? Or crying because his parents accidentally taped over The Alligator People (underrated Lon Chaney Jr. performance, by the way).

Talk about precocious….

You worked at a movie theater, read movie sites, studied film in college. What was the tipping point for you with movies? 

ANDY:  When I was in grade school, my friends and I formed our own production companies and made movies for the local cable access station. I made short films in high school that almost got me suspended from school – and made me a bona fide legend in the process. No hyperbole. 

So it’s always been a thread that’s followed me through adolescence until today. My college roommate once told me whatever you like to read about online is probably what you should be doing with your life. For me, it’s been about movies. I remember discovering sites like imdb and worldwideboxoffice, then boxofficereport (I see you Daniel Garris), boxofficeguru, and GoldDerby (I still remember Tom O’Neill’s great purge) back when I was 13. The Film Experience is  part of a great wave of Oscar coverage sites I stumbled upon shortly after finding Oscar Watch (now Awards Daily). They fill a real void, offering criticism and analysis of the sorts of things I – growing up – could only wait for EW’s annual Oscar issue to learn about. They are great gateway sites; accessible, but piquing the interest of novices to seek out more in depth material on what makes film great. 

I just love the richness of movies, how collaborative they are. Maybe, at the root of my interest, it’s the storytelling. Who knows?

Who are your three favorite actresses?

ANDY: Favorite? The GOAT? One answer needs saying here… Lori Loughlin. Dscovering "Full House" when I was 6. Life changing. Otherwise, let’s rattle off the usual suspects we all know about, shall we? Michelle Williams, Carey Mulligan and Jessica Chastain are the three greatest ‘Next Generation’ actresses working right now. Some all time favorite performances: Katharine Hepburn in Bringing Up Baby, Joanne Woodward in The Fugitive Kind, Susan Sarandon in Bull Durham

Have you ever dressed up as a movie character for Halloween?

ANDY: If this counts, I have spent a good portion of the Halloweens dressing up as some member of the Batman universe, beginning in preschool when I went as the Caped Crusader himself.

Andy at 6 ! Awwww

In the 6th grade I went as Alex from A Clockwork Orange. My classmates and teachers all thought I was a generic gangster. The tipoff is in the white overalls and derby. One year I also went as Butch from Pulp Fiction by wearing an old tan motorcycle jacket of my Dad’s and putting a red ball in my mouth (wattt upp mah fckas).

LOL. So inappropriate. Thanks for chatting, Andy. 

Previous Spotlight


First & Last: Unknown Ports

first and last puzzles
the first line of dialogue and the last image from a motion picture

The earth has not managed to swallow me into the abyss..."

Can you guess the movie? If not the answer is after the jump

Click to read more ...


Oscar Date Trivia Attack. But Another Long Phase Two? Noooooo

By now you've undoubtedly heard that AMPAS has opted to bypass the February Winter Olympics in 2014 not by attacking the Globes & SAG in their comfy January berths but by waiting it out patiently until March. Sunday, March 2nd 2014 to be precise.

ESSENTIAL TRIVIA: Only one Oscar ceremony has ever been held on a March 2nd. That night the Oscar went to... Casablanca (1942) so that's good company for the upcoming winner to be in.

March is of course the most common month for Oscars to be held (with April and February taking silver and bronze). The most common night for the Oscars to be held is a tie between March 25th (From Here to Eternity, Amadeus, Dances With Wolves, Braveheart and Gladiator) and March 29th (All About Eve, Cuckoo's Nest, Chariots of Fire, Rain Man, Unforgiven) if you were born on either of those days, Oscar loves you most u cute liddle adorable golden-baby!

March 2nd is a week later as shows go for his year but so are the nominations (January 16th, 2014). Which means that the 2013 Oscar race will be nearly exactly like the one we just experienced in terms of timing. What we probably won't see is all the OMG-WTF-IS-HAPPENING drama because those kind of curveballs we were thrown (Bigelow & Affleck, Les Miz's ecstatic premiere to sharp drop, Lincoln's weird frontrunner to "anything but!" trajectory, Ang Lee's second Oscar without a noisy campaign, etc...) are mighty rare.

All of which is a long way of saying that once again the time period between Nominations and Hollywood's High Holy Night will be much longer than anyone can deal with*. I've updated the embeddable widget should you love the countdown to nominations as much as I... 

but if you'd already had it on your page you know that I change it each year so that the countdown never ends.

It can't because the Oscars are eternal!

P.S. Somewhat curiously they've also announced the Oscar ceremoney date for 2015 as if to remind all of us that they have no intention of returning to March in the future. It'll be held on February 22nd, 2015 which is only 698 days from now. Set your watches. (The only other previous February 22nd Oscars went to Slumdog Millionaire. Uh oh)

*I much prefer a long Phase One, short Phase Two but what'cha gonna do?


Curio: For the Love of Paul (Rudd)

Alexa here. Nathaniel's Posterized on Paul Rudd got me thinking about the man and his merits.  As many of the comments suggested, I wish he would spend less time with the Apatow crowd and do a little more challenging work: more uncomfortable dramas like Neil LaBute's The Shape of Things and less sloppy comedies like I Love You Man. In fact, I seem to recall him expressing some sadness in an interview last year that he wasn't offered more serious roles. Here's hoping that more directors see his dramatic merits in the future. Until then, the closest he'll come is in David Gordon Green's upcoming dramedy Prince Avalanche. But I'll admit I'm looking forward to him returning to Anchorman territory, if only for the mustache and the Sex Panther.


To celebrate this puppy-faced dynamo, here is a Rudd coloring book I may or may not own. [more after the jump...]

Click to read more ...


can you sing with all the voices of the mountains?

Can you paint with all the colors of the wind? Well, can you?





Reader Spotlight: Ferdi

This is Ferdi!

Editors' Note: It's Reader Appreciation Month -- which we'll extend into April since I've been slow to get going. We haven't interviewed readers in two years but here were the previously awesome boys and girls  (I shouldn't say "previously"... I'm sure they're all still awesome. Reading TFE makes you a smarter, funnier, hotter person - Scientific Fact!). New Reader Spotlights coming at you daily for two weeks before the series goes weekly! Hope you enjoy - Nathaniel 

Hi, Ferdi! what's your first movie memory?

FERDI: My first movie memory is in the very early 80's, a re-edition of 101 Dalmatians during the Easter Holidays. I went to the theatre with my parents. I don't think I understood very much of the plot, I was three or four, but I was absolutely thrilled and blown away by Cruella De Vil.

Who chould have known that was the beginning of my fascination with villains, dark ladies, stardom and powerful female characters?

When did you start reading The Film Experience?

FERDI: Back in 2002, I was eager to find everything I could on the web about Far From Heaven, The Hours and my increasing obsession with Julianne Moore and unending love for La Pfeiffer. And I found the best place where I could feed them, I suppose. I just stopped and said: "Oh my God, there's someone else on earth who loves them as much as (or even more than) me!". I'm a faithful reader since then.

Three Favorite Directors? Go!

FERDI: Very tough question. Ask me tomorrow and I will give you different names. But for now I must say: Jane Campion, for her unique feminine eye, the psychological depth of her characters and the mastery in combining form and content like only the greatest director can do; David Cronenberg for his poetics about bodily mutations and his spellbinding variations on horror and melodrama; And Stephen Frears, as my guilty pleasure. I just LOVE how he manages to bring out of his actresses their absolute best -- Glenn Close in Dangerous Liasons and Anjelica Huston in The Grifters are two of my personal heroines.

Campion, Cronenberg, and Frears

(Ok you just ask me three names, but if they were five I would have added Martin Scorsese and Todd Haynes.)

I love those answers but since you're Italian, aren't you obligated to say Federico Fellini?

FERDI: Of course I love the classics of Fellini and most of all Visconti, but I didn't grow up watching their movies. When I was a child I used to watch Alfred Hitchcock movies with my father. Then I began to go back to Italian cinema at University but even there I preferred to study Orson Welles and Billy Wilder more than De Sica or Antonioni. I don't think it's a kind of refusal of my inner roots... It's all about personal taste and building cultural references and dreaming and finding your own way to escape. And I found it in the American cinema.

Speaking of Hollywood then, final question. Take one Oscar away from someone, give it to someone else.

FERDI: I know I will sound unoriginal but it's the Halle Berry win for Monster's Ball. That year I would give it to Nicole Kidman for Moulin Rouge so that Julianne Moore can win the following year.

Previous Readers...