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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 | instagram | letterboxd | deviantart 

 

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Oldest Living Screen Stars

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"Amazing how most of the cast of the old 'Dick Van Dyke Show' are still around" - Gian

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Saturday
Dec142013

American Hustle... 'you know, for kids!'

Text from a friend:

Too bad about their period piece aversion because New Jersey's political history, Abscam, and combover jokes are otherwise such big draws with the kids!

 

Saturday
Dec142013

Thoughts I Had... While Watching the "Interstellar" Teaser

Presented in the order I had them without self-censorship... you do the same in the comments!

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Saturday
Dec142013

Team FYC: Julia Louis-Dreyfus in Enough Said

Team FYC lets Film Experience contributors highlight their favourite fringe contenders for awards season. Here's David Upton on a sitcom star moving mediums.

Times have changed since George Clooney made the stratospheric leap into movie stardom after leaving ER. The avalanche of cable shows starring former box office headliners over the past few years have gone some way towards reducing the gulf between the two mediums. Julia Louis-Dreyfus currently plays her frantic neuroticism big on the small screen, as a harried, ambitious and fatigued vice president on HBO’s Veep. But she also side-stepped seamlessly into Nicole Holofcener’s big screen world of anxious, middle-aged, middle-class white women as Eva, a divorced masseuse in Enough Said. Next to the sharp, caustic wit of Armando Iannucci’s political sass, Holofcener’s script is a warmer, more delicate thing, and Louis-Dreyfus tones it down for the bigger screen.

While the more intimate focus of Enough Said makes for a more enjoyable, astute film than Holofcener’s recent ensemble films, it’s Louis-Dreyfus who gives the proceedings a different tone than the more bitter screen presence of Holofcener's usual leading lady Catherine Keener (in a supporting role this time). While Enough Said isn’t the type of film that calls for a star turn, Louis-Dreyfus shades Eva with her long-established persona without letting it overwhelm the film. Eva instantly makes sense as a character without being too familiar – it’s a delicate combination of persona and performance that’s much harder than Louis-Dreyfus makes it look. It’s a shorthand that she never uses as a crutch – instead, it’s a springboard she uses to etch deeper, more painful shades into Eva and her relationships with the other characters.

As ever, Julia is a generous screen partner. Her warm but nervy presence brings out new qualities in the people that surround Eva, particularly the vulnerable pride in James Gandolfini’s Albert. She aces the comic notes without making them gratuitous, instead making them organic to Eva’s neurotic, frazzled personality. JLD effortlessly gets both the size and shape of the film, she's at once luminous as its star and awkwardly humbled as Eva often feels; the emotional movements are gentle but feel seismic, because Louis-Dreyfus so openly makes Eva and the film inseparable entities. Enough Said feels so much lighter for her presence, but she assures that it lands its darkest moments with graceful power.

related post
Julia Louis-Dreyfus interviewed

Friday
Dec132013

Happy Birthday, Dick Van Dyke

Tim here. Saving Mr. Banks opens in New York and Los Angeles today, and Mary Poppins made its debut on Blu-ray this past Tuesday in a "50th Anniversary" edition bumped up a year for maximum cross-promotion effectiveness. Doubtlessly, neither of those events was timed to coincide with the birthday of Mary Poppins co-star Dick Van Dyke, who turns 88 years old today, but the confluence of events was just too perfect to pass up. Let us then spare a moment to thank one of the greatest avuncular figures in American pop culture in this moment when his most important film role has been brought back into the limelight so enthusiastically (though Van Dyke, as a character, is barely a blip in the context of Saving Mr. Banks, taking the form of an unbilled performance by Kristopher Kyer).

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Friday
Dec132013

TGIF: What's Your Favourite Award Presentation?

Glenn here. It's Friday, which for a lot of people means the weekend. If, like me, you don't work a traditional 9 to 5 job then it means nothing at all. Except, of course, it becomes socially acceptable to be up until 4am watching movies. I have an OFCS ballot that is incomplete and I've only got 30 hours to watch all the contenders!

Of course, I'll never actually get to watch them if I spend my time continuously watching clips from award shows, which is something that inevitably happens during the season. It's a sickness, I swear. Inspired by yesterday's Golden Globe nominations and watching Kristen Wiig and Will Ferrell present musical/comedy actress at this year's award show for about the 100th time. Apropos of it being the end of the week, here are some of my favourites, but how about yours? 

Friday
Dec132013

'Gravity', 'The Great Gatsby' and 'Kamasutra 3D' (!) Among 141 Eligible for Original Score

Was 2013 a weak year for film scores? I feel like it was. At least in terms of the scores that Oscar's music branch would pay attention to. I mean, four of my favourite scores of the year aren't even eligible! They would be Great Expectations (Richard Hartley), A Touch of Sin (Giong Lim), Lore (Max Richter - my no. 1 from 2012, but not released in US until this year), and Only God Forgives (Cliff Martinez). Also not eligible for whatever reasons are Lone Survivor (Stephen Jablonsky), Frozen, Inside Llewyn Davis (T-Bone Burnett), and Nebraska (Mark Orton) - sorry Anne Marie!


I'm sure there is plenty of excellent music featured amongst this year's 141 (the documentary win this year's bragging rights, then) eligible scores, but Oscar will only look at about 10 or 12. Sorry Joseph Bishara - your abrasive strings on Insidious: Chapter 2 and The Conjuring just won't factor despite their effectiveness. Sorry Daniel Hart - your clapping melodies on Ain't Them Bodies Saints just aren't going to get enough ears listening. Sorry Sreejith Edavana and Saachin Raj Chelory - your score for Kamasutra 3D (!!!) will not be considered, but boy am I intrigued!?!?

 

Out in front are Gravity (Stephen Price), 12 Years a Slave (Hans Zimmer) and Philomena (Alexandre Desplat - the moment I saw his name in the credits I though "instant nomination!"), with Saving Mr Banks (Thomas Newman), The Book Thief (John Williams) rounding out Nathaniel's own predictions and both feel like likely nominees. But what of newcomer Alex Ebert and All is Lost, a globe nominee yesterday. Musicians might be inclined to reward the way he kept a film with one actor who barely talks interesting. There'a also Mark Heffes' Globe nominee for Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.

One to keep an eye out for too is Craig Armstrong for The Great Gatsby. I figured it would be deemed not significant enough given the film's preference to songs, but there it is and he's already been cited by several places including the Grammys. Henry Jackman should also be on the Oscar watch radar for Captain Phillips, likewise Hans Zimmer (again) for Rush, Randy Newman for Monsters University, Danny Elfman for Oz: The Great and Powerful and Howard Shore for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. I may not necessarily be fans of those scores (I haven't seen The Hobbit sequel), but those names should never be discounted.

I doubt Oscar will spread itself beyond those names, as much as I'd like The Missing Picture (Marc Marder), Mud (David Wingo), The Place Beyond the Pines (Mike Patton), Stoker (Clint Mansell), and The Wind Rises (Joe Hasaishi) to show up. Lastly, and perhaps of interest to nobody but myself, some of Danny Elfman's best work in years from Errol Morris' The Unknown Known is not included on the long list. However, given the likes of The Armstrong Lie and Tim's Vermeer are included it's not for the reasons that Errol Morris seems to think. Curious.

See the full list after the jump.

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