DON'T MISS THIS!
Oscar History
Welcome

The Film Experience™ was created by Nathaniel R. Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, or by a member of our amazing team as noted.

Like The Film Experience on Facebook

Powered by Squarespace
What'cha Looking For?
Comment Fun

Comment(s) Du Jour
Yes No Maybe So - Beauty & The Beast

"Nice teaser but it going to be hard for Disney to top one of their true masterpieces of animation" - Jaragon

 "I don't have high hopes for the principals either, but the real draw is the supporting cast. I'm a NO on McGregor's accent and a YES on McKellen, so put me down as a MAYBE SO." -BD

 "CGI chandeliers? Damn, DIsney, let them build a set." -Jacob

Keep TFE Strong

 

LOVE THE SITE? DONATE 

Your suscription dimes make an enormous difference to The Film Experience in terms of stability and budget to dream bigger. Consider...

I ♥ The Film Experience

THANKS IN ADVANCE

For those who can't commit to a dime a day, consider a one time donation for an article or a series you are glad you didn't have to live without.

Subscribe
Monday
Feb102014

The Ultimate "You Can't Sit With Us"


Jose here. True story, in ealy 1998 I was obsessed with the two women to the right. Julia was the star of the first non-animated movie I owned on VHS (My Best Friend's Wedding) and Gwynnie was my straight-crush du jour having stolen my heart in Great Expectations. That year I deemed them both as my favorite actresses (I was 12) and had forgotten all about how giddy they made me until I saw them together in this picture (taken at some gala celebrating Sean Penn). Of course, I started fantasizing/thinking about all of my favorite random celebrity couplings pictures (this one of Madonna making Pé drink champagne is a very close second), not to mention thinking about how Goldie would fare as Violet in August... but before I go down an endless pit of actressing, let us know:

What are some of your favorite random celebrity pictures? Which celebrities you'd like to see hanging out together?

Monday
Feb102014

"I AM NOT FAMOUS ANYMORE"

I've been struggling and struggling to come up with something to say about Shia Labeouf's paper bag look at the Berlinale over the weekend. Thought it seems ready made for a meme -- think of all the has-beens that could be mocked! -- you wouldn't be able to tell who was being mocked once you'd photoshopped the bag over the head. 

I know only two things about this. First, that James Franco exploded when he saw it, both sexually aroused and furious that he hadn't thought of it first. Second, that at least one cinephile in each top film market will do this look for Halloween and not enough people will get the joke. 

Monday
Feb102014

20 Days Til Oscar (1993 Flashback)

Today's magic number is... 20! I couldn't find a statistic from this year's race involving the number 20 so what were Oscar fanatics like me (and you if you're weren't an infant) obsessing about 20 years ago in the Oscar race? 1993 was a fairly astonishing film year but there wasn't much drama in the Oscar race. Everyone knew that Tom Hanks and Holly Hunter would win the lead Oscars and the night would be all about Steven Spielberg with multiple wins for both Jurassic Park (recently revisted right here) and Schindler's List. Even Supporting Actor, in what one could argue was its best shortlist ever, didn't contain much drama. Though Ralph Fiennes (Schindler's List)  and Leonardo DiCaprio (What's Eating Gilbert Grape?) were giving major star-is-born performances, it was pretty clear that the industry wanted to honor Tommy Lee Jones for his whole career and for co-starring in a huge hit (The Fugitive).

So was there any drama at all? Why, yes, I'm so glad you asked.

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Feb092014

Review: The LEGO Movie

'If you build it, they will come.' They'll come in droves. It's 2014 and at this point, it's safe to say that Hollywood has mastered the art of pandering to the masses. They deliver exactly what we are pre-conditioned to want. The box office charts each year are now completely filled by franchises and pre-branded efforts. Frozen, for example, isn't a true original, but the 12th episode of the Disney Princess franchise that's been breaking box office records since (gulp) 1937. It's now extremely rare for a non-sequel non-pre-branded film to ever become a mammoth hit; only one "original" per year even cracks the annual top ten now (Gravity in 2013, Ted in 2012, none in 2011) which is a big downturn from the Aughts which themselves weren't as original as the Nineties.

All of which brings us to this weekend's chart topper, THE LEGO MOVIE. With its built-in nostalgia for childhood as well as a huge swath of pre-licensed characters to dangle in front of your 3D glasses (Gandalf, Batman, Han Solo, Wonder Woman, and dozens more), it's easy to approach the new hit expecting the worst. But there's no need! I'll use Bad Cop / Good Cop (voiced by Liam Neeson) to illustrate the situation and my own immediate mood swing as the movie built its case.

[BAD COP] The LEGO Movie would be a massive hit even if it were terrible.

[GOOD COP] Who cares? It's wonderful!

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Feb092014

Box Office: Lord Business Does Big Business with "The LEGO Movie"

Amir here, with the weekend’s box office report. To the surprise of nobody, tiny little yellow people beat middle-aged white men to the top spot at the box office. The LEGO Movie, advertised around the world building toys we loved as kids, took the top spot with $69.1m, which makes it the second best February opening of all time and among the best original releases ever – only a little off the all time high set by The Simpsons Movie, though you can judge for yourself how 'original' they are. The Lord/Miller directing duo is going to have a terrific year with their sequel to 21 Jump Street also on the way. With box office and critics both in their camp, expect their stock to rise even higher within studios. The LEGO Movie is the first blockbuster I watched on the opening Friday in ages (Skyfall was the last!) and I was thoroughly rewarded with an unstoppable thrill ride. 

chart adapted from boxoffice.com

The Monuments Men was obviously never going to win the weekend but it did very respectable business. Whether it can sustain these numbers over long run despite terrible word of mouth is to be seen, but I can’t help but think Clooney and co. saved themselves a lot of embarrassment by switching their release date to February. Awards expectations are anathema to weak prestige projects like this and competition at the multiplex is no less lenient in late December. In other news, Frozen just passed Despicable Me 2 to become 2013’s third highest grosser. It won’t be able to go any further up the ranking, but the numbers are beyond impressive at this point. International sales is also nearing one billion dollars, a feat very few films can lay claim to.

In Oscar related news, seven of the nine best picture nominees are still in the top 20. Most of them lost a lot of theaters this weekend and as the shine of their nomination wears off, they’ll continue to drop. Still, most can be considered financial successes at this point. Considering budget and overseas sales, Nebraska is the one film that missed the mark, though who knows how Dallas Buyers Club and Her will perform internationally.

Anyway, other than The LEGO Movie, I watched a European co-production called Girl on a Bicycle, about which the less said the better. What did you watch this weekend?

Sunday
Feb092014

21 Days Til Oscar

For the next twenty-one days we'll be sharing little trivia items as we count down to Hollywood's High Holy Night and surveying each category though we're not ready for the latter part just yet. Sound fun?

 Guess who's the only famous director to ever win exactly 21 nominations? That's Billy Wilder, pictured above with his bounty from The Apartment (1960). He won nominations in Picture, Director, and in the Writing categories over his very long directorial career which stretched from the French language Mauvaise Grain (1934) to the Jack Lemmon/Walter Matthau comedy Buddy Buddy (1981). His career total: 6 Oscars and a Thalberg!

The only director more celebrated in terms of total nominations in multiple categories is Woody Allen with 24 career nods, the huge bulk of which are for Best Original Screenplay (where he's nominated again this year for Blue Jasmine). Billy Wilder is also in second place in terms of total Best Director nominations with 8 though he shares that honor with Martin Scorsese (nominated again this year as well for The Wolf of Wall Street). First place is William Wyler (Ben Hur) with an incredible 12 Best Director nominations. Wyler is unlikely to ever be overthrown with his nearest living and working rivals so far behind him (Scorsese with 8, Steven Spielberg & Allen with 7 each and all of them senior citizens).

Some Like It Hot (1959) was nominated for 6 Oscars but not Picture or Actress, damnit

What's your favorite Billy Wilder movie?
It's an amazingly tough question since the man made Double Indemnity (1944), Sunset Boulevard (1950), Some Like It Hot (1959), and The Apartment (1960) all of which will regular pop up on "Best Movies Ever" lists. 

 

Sunday
Feb092014

More Prizes for Best Pic Nominees: 12 Years a Slave, Gravity, & Her

From the USC Scripter nominees we discussed Friday the group chose 12 Years a Slave as the best adapted screenplay of the year. Since their prize goes to both the screenwriter and the original author that means John Ridley gave the acceptance speech but Solomon Northup was also a winner. He's been dead for 151 years so one wonders where his prize goes? I hope to the Faces of Solomon group.

But it wasn't all good news for the masterful slavery drama. It lost its Art Direction, Period  prize to the much showier Baz Luhrmann film The Great Gatsby. Catherine Martin, Baz's wife and creative collaborator is drowning in such prizes. She's won the ADG and the Oscar both before in this category for Moulin Rouge!

ADG AWARDS FILM

So pleased this won it's prize! K.K. Barrett is a marvel

Contemporary Film K.K. Barrett, Her
Fantasy Film Andy Nicholson, Gravity
Period Film Catherine Martin, The Great Gatsby

It's worth noting that all three of those production designers are Oscar nominated as well. They're competing against Adam Stockhausen for 12 Years a Slave and Judy Becker  for American Hustle.

Television & Special Extra Film Prizes are after the jump...

Click to read more ...