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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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Wednesday
Feb062013

Smash: "On Broadway" & "The Fallout"

If I had to hold a Playbill while waiting for "Smash"'s second season to begin, my hands would have all smudged with the ink from the anticipatory twisting and rolling and general "start already!" fussing. Though "Smash" was never exactly a critical hit in its first season, the idea that it was "hate watch" appointment television was sad (sigh. people and their it's-cool-too-hate-musicals predictability!). Smash was really no worse than your average struggling-to-find-its-voice first season TV show but in its finest moments it was like nothing else on television and pretty thrilling, too. I would hold up last season's early episode "The Cost of Art" up against virtually any episode of any show last season in terms of quality.

American Idol Alumni: Hudson & McPhee duet "On Broadway"

We could definitely see the behind-the-scenes turmoil on the screen in Season 1 as the show went on. But the show must go on... [more after the jump including new characters and songs]

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Feb062013

Cabaret Winners!

"Beedle dee, dee dee dee,
Two winners.
Beedle dee, dee dee dee,
And I'm the only man,
Ja!"

It's time to announce the winners of the Cabaret contest, pulled randomly from your entries which were doubled if you sent along a Cabaret inspired photo along with your note about your favorite moment in the 1972 masterpiece.

I had fun reading all of your opinions and even more fun watching the film again... though the strangest thing about seeing it on the big screen for the first time after a lifetime spent watching it on various sizes of screens at home was that it suddenly seemed to have less musical numbers. Minnelli's peak razzle dazzle and Joel Grey's indeligible emcee suck up all the oxygen in terms of memories of the movie but there is so much more to the movie which is a really brilliant and disturbing drama about a world(s) about to collapse, specifically Weimar Era Germany (and its funhouse mirror in the Kit Kat Club).

Anyway... I asked you to either "like" the film experience facebook page and tell us your favorite bit of Cabaret or do the same thing by email with a "photo" inspired by Cabaret to win yourself an extra contest entry. The winners of the remastered restored and booklet-beautiful 40th anniversary blu-ray, chosen randomly are:

JOSHUA FLOWER who writes:

My favorite moment comes right at the top - the opening shot that pulls back off the reflection of Joel Grey as he turns to the camera/audience and starts singing "Vilkommen." It might be my favorite opening shot, period. The precision and energy of the camerawork, the hall of mirrors distortion of the reflection, in contrast to the reality, which is kind of garish and severe, combined with the music, which is peppy and weirdly melancholy at the same time... That one shot has always felt like a perfect little encapsulation of the movie as a whole, somehow.

KATE IMY who sent a photo of herself performing "Money Money Money" - how cool is that? She writes:

...a too-literal entry into your "inspired" photo challenge. These are from when a friend and I sang the song "Money Money" in our high school Broadway review style show "Knights on Broadway." Thankfully they hide the fact that I was/am an atrocious singer. My friend with the fantastic makeup was actually quite good. So for purely selfish and awkwardly self-promotional reasons "Money Money" has a special place for me in the movie. Especially the "When you haven't any coal in the stove..." bit. So hard to do but so exciting to watch when it's done well (in the movie). 

CONGRATULATIONS TO JOSHUA & KATE!

After the jump, I thought you might enjoy a few more losing but great contest entries from readers. I'm sorry I didn't have dozens of blu-rays to give away but you all won my heart and that has to count for something!

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Feb062013

Pi Dominates the VES Awards

The Visual Effects Society awards held their 11th annual awards ceremony last night and Life of Pi dominated the proceedings with four awards, including the top prize for Best Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Film and Best Animated Character in a Live Action Film (Richard Parker). Ang Lee's film is a visual treat and I fully expect it to repeat the feat at the Academy Awards later this month. 

For the past four years, the winner of the best visual effects award has been a best picture nominee and there's little reason to assume the streak will end this year. Meanwhile, The Impossible won in the Best Supporting Visual Effects category, though it was left off Academy's lineup in favour of more CGI-heavy titles. In the animated races, Brave managed to win both Outstanding Animation and Character Animation (Merida) in addition to two other prizes. No other animated film managed to snatch anything away from Brave, but The Avengers and The Hobbit rounded out the winners on the live action side of things. 

Full list of winners after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Feb062013

Slithery Spacey & Co. Rule the "House of Cards"

Hello, lovelies. Beau here, returning after a major binge of quality television during the past seventy-two hours.

Yes, I have finished the first season of the newest business model for the entertainment industry, the David Fincher / Beau Willimon project "House of Cards", with a large cast led by Kevin Spacey as Francis "Frank" Underwood, a ruthless ambitious politician in DC.

I'll be perfectly honest in admitting that the show didn't do much for me. Whereas Homeland, Downton Abbey, Girls and Archer have proven to be tried and true addictions House of Cards treads over familiar territory with little to supplement the politics.

Spacey is, naturally, exceptional, having a ball with the material and the ability to flaunt his ungodly talents. The asides to the audience turn us into co-conspirators, advisers to his machinal, instinctual desire for revenge. Robin Wright (long one of my favorite actresses, who hasn't been given a fine enough opportunity to strut her stuff since Nine Lives years ago) fares slightly less well, given that her promising Lady Macbeth front slowly withers but all the drama is internal.

[more after the jump]

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Feb052013

Film Bitch Awards Best Supporting Actress Prizes (2000-2011)

I'll announce 2012's nominees the second the write-ups are done (working on them this week). But until then another listy flashblack to year's past here at The Film Experience. My opinions have changed somewhat over the years (as many opinions should if we continue to evolve) and perhaps I'll detail which changes those were in the future but mostly I like to think of Awards, both mine and other people's as time capsules of What We Valued At That Moment.

So here you go... 

Nominees in Alpha Order
Sally Field, Lincoln
Anne Hathaway, Les Misérables
Nicole Kidman, The Paperboy 
Diane Kruger, Farewell My Queen
Lorraine Toussaint, Middle of Nowhere
write ups here 

Gold: Vanessa Redgrave, Coriolanus
Silver: Sarah Bayet, A Separation
Bronze: Carey Mulligan, Shame
Also Nominated
Jessica Chastain, The Help
Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids

Gold: Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom
Silver: Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Bronze: Amy Adams, The Fighter
Also Nominated
Kimberly Elise, For Colored Girls
Olivia Williams, The Ghost Writer

 
Gold: Mo'Nique, Precious
Silver: Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air
Bronze: Marion Cotillard, Nine
Also Nominated
Samantha Morton, The Messenger
Rosamund Pike, An Education

*I believe this is my longest run of Oscar agreement as to winners in any category... throughout time. They went three consecutive years (2007-2009) making brilliant choices for wins in this category.


Gold: Penelope Cruz, Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Silver: Rosemarie DeWitt, Rachel Getting Married
Bronze: Viola Davis, Doubt
Also Nominated
Samantha Morton, Synecdoche New York
Marisa Tomei, The Wrestler


Gold: Tilda Swinton, Michael Clayton
Silver: Imelda Staunton, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Bronze: Cate Blanchett, I'm Not There
Also Nominated
Charlotte Gainsbourg, I'm Not There
Marisa Tomei, Before the Devil Knows You're Dead

Gold: Emily Blunt, The Devil Wears Prada
Silver: Fiona Shaw, The Black Dahlia
Bronze: Meryl Streep, A Prairie Home Companion
Also Nominated
Adriana Barraza, Babel
Mira Kirshner, The Black Dahlia

Gold: Maria Bello, A History of Violence
Silver: Michelle Williams, Brokeback Mountain
Bronze: Maggie Gyllenhaal, Happy Endings
Also Nominated
Amy Adams, Junebug
Ziyi Zhang, 2046

Gold: Virginia Madsen, Sideways
Silver: Cate Blanchett, The Aviator
Bronze: Daryl Hannah, Kill Bill, Vol. 2
Also Nominated
Patricia Clarkson, Dogville
Natalie Portman, Garden State

Gold: Holly Hunter, thirteen
Silver: Miranda Richardson, Spider
Bronze: Catherine O'Hara, A Mighty Wind
Also Nominated
Shohreh Aghdashloo, House of Sand and Fog
Patricia Clarkson, The Station Agent

Gold: Michelle Pfeiffer, White Oleander
Silver: Catherine Zeta-Jones, Chicago
Bronze: Meryl Streep, Adaptation
Also Nominated
Patricia Clarkson, Far From Heaven
Bebe Neuwirth, Tadpole

Gold: Kate Winslet, Iris
Silver: Marisa Tomei, In the Bedroom
Bronze: Helen Mirren, Gosford Park
Also Nominated
Frances McDormand, The Man Who Wasn't There
Maggie Smith, Gosford Park

Gold: Catherine Deneuve, Dancer in the Dark
Silver: Samantha Morton, Jesus' Son
Bronze: Kirsten Dunst, The Virgin Suicides
Also Nominated
Kate Hudson, Almost Famous
Frances McDormand, Almost Famous/Wonder Boys

Do you remember these performances fondly?
Do you remember your choices over the past decade?