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

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TOM JONES + LIZ TAYLOR + SIDNEY POITIER
deep dive podcast with the '63 smackdown 

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Guest Actress in a Drama
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"Something I thought I'd never say, but Alexis Bledel deserves the Emmy" -Arlo

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Thursday
Sep172015

TIFF: Mustang, 3000 Nights

Amir continues our coverage of the Toronto International Film Festival with a duo of middle eastern films directed by women, the first of which is one of five films shortlisted for Oscar submission selection by France.

Mustang (Turkey/France)
Deniz Gamze Ergüven’s first feature is an astonishingly assured debut. The story of five orphaned sisters who live with their grandmother and uncle in rural Turkey is at once a joyous celebration of youth and a rage-inducing depiction of young girls’ lives in religious, conservative societies. Locked inside their house after they are found innocuously playing with male classmates at the beach, the girls are forced to stay away from school and spend their days getting primed to be housewives.

The first half takes on a mostly comic tone, as the girls defiantly rebel against increasingly harsh measures by finding inventive ways to step out of the house or sneak off with their boyfriends. One forced marriage and an unfortunate disaster later, however, the film takes a sharp turn for the serious. [More...]

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Thursday
Sep172015

What's Next for Jennifer Lawrence 

Murtada here with some casting news. With commitments to her two franchises coming to an end soon, Jennifer Lawrence is getting busy considering all types of movies. November 20th brings The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2 her 4th and last outing, for now, as Katniss Everdeen. Next summer’s X-Men Apocalypse is supposedly the last time we will see Lawrence as Mystique.

This week came news that she is attached to an adaptation of the book Red Sparrow about a Russian intelligence officer trained as a seductress and her handling of a rival CIA operative. This movie could re-team her with Francis Lawrence her first Hunger Games director. It’s a hot property in Hollywood that previously had director/actress combos of Darren Aronofsky/Natalie Portman and David Fincher/Rooney Mara interested.

More projects and some recent Lawrence quotes after the jump.

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Wednesday
Sep162015

TIFF: Jake Gyllenhaal in "Demolition"

This review originally appeared in abridged version in Nathaniel's column at Towleroad

All throughout Demolition, which opened the 40th annual Toronto International Film Festival which closes this coming Sunday, new widower Davis Mitchell (Jake Gyllenhaal) is putting the title into action. His wife has just died, he is convinced he feels nothing about it, and he begins to tear things down and scatter their parts about. The general idea is ‘take something apart to see how it all fits together’ but he doesn’t bother with the fitting back together part.

He’s also demolitioning his own life, of course, in the process. This peculiar destructive streak starts out small with his morning routine. At first, in montage, this includes lots of preening and shaving (including his chest. *sniffle*) to turn him into a smooth starched and well dressed executive but it’s quickly abandoned. Cue: sexy scruff and increasingly erratic behavior. (Unfortunately we are not shown the return of the chest hair. Stingy move, movie!)

Everything has become a metaphor…”

…Davis intones in the middle of the picture to his confused and impatient boss and father-in-law (Chris Cooper), as an attempt to explain his new and frankly worrisome headspace. But he’s right. Everything is a metaphor in Demolition and thus, apart from Gyllenhaal’s work, the movie sparked polarized reactions. More...

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Wednesday
Sep162015

TIFF's Red Carpet, Much Improved

Jose here, with a new life mission: make someone as happy as Kate Winslet looked at the premiere of The Dressmaker.

 The Oscar winner was the epitome of radiance as she walked the red carpet in a stunning Badgley Mischka design. Official reports say she was blowing kisses to the crowd, signing autographs and putting on her best face for her fans, however I choose to believe she was smiling because she saw how improved the looks were at the festival by the time she arrived. See the looks after the jump. 

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Wednesday
Sep162015

Beauty Break - Tilda as AnOther

Here's Murtada with a couple of gorgeous pictures of a movie star to brighten your evening. We’ve already seen the striking first still from A Bigger Splash, now come more enticing images to get us more impatient for this film. As if we weren’t already...

Tilda Swinton looks a bit different in these photos, no? Well there’s a reason for that. Because she’s Tilda Swinton she doesn’t just give an interview to promote her movie. She gives it in character. In A Bigger Splash Swinton plays a rock star, called Marianne Lane,  involved in a quartet of sex and intrigue with Matthias Schoenaerts, Ralph Fiennes and Dakota Johnson. For the AnOther Magazine cover story she conducted the interview as her character Lane. Here’s how AnOther put it:

This entire interview is a work of fiction co-authored by Tilda Swinton, Glenn O’Brien, Luca Guadagnino and Dave Kajganich, based around events in the film A Bigger Splash.

Another interesting tidbit from the interview is that Lane is mostly silent throughout the movie. Speaking to reporters at the Venice Film Festival where the movie played earlier this month, Swinton explained why,  “It was a moment in my life when I really didn’t want to say anything”. To explain Tilda's silence, Lane is recovering from a throat surgery under doctor’s orders not to speak -very believable for a rock star.

In the US we'll have to wait till May 2016 to see this movie. Those of you in London shouldn't miss it when it plays the London Film Festival next month.

What do you think of Tilda as Marianne?

Wednesday
Sep162015

A Spoonful of Annie? Perhaps...

Kieran here. In the age of remakes, re-imaginings and two Spiderman reboots in less than five years, the announcement that Disney is developing a new musical featuring Mary Poppins actually feels kind of refreshing. Revisiting a character from a live-action musical? And a female character at that? I say "kind of refreshing" because it still feels like a very strange project this far out. It's supposedly set twenty years after the events of Mary Poppins, which immediately had me imagining something darker in tone, not unlike Return to Oz. How does the Banks family fare two decades after the wind changed and Mary bid them adieu? This is all speculative of course. No plot details have been released and only a few key crew members have been announced. Rob Marshall is slated to direct and the script is being penned by David Magee (Finding Neverland and Life of Pi).

How do I put this diplomatically...Can we stop giving every live-action musical (unfortunately few and far between at this point) to Rob Marshall? It seems knee-jerk and lazy every time a musical is announced with Marshall at the helm. I liked Chicago quite a bit, but it's been a pretty steep decline since then. He seems to direct screen musicals with the desire to make them palatable for modern audiences rather than leaning into the medium and truly working well within it. Remember that odd "Musical for People who Hate Musicals" campaign during Chicago's Oscar run? Or that first Into the Woods trailer where no one was singing? Or how over half of the musical numbers were cut out of Nine and the rest were sung on a stage for no reason? It's time to give another director a chance. Perhaps someone with a little less internalized musical self-hatred (Yes, I just made that term up). Musicals are a tough medium with a specific audience. They need a director who will embrace their heightened theatrics and overt sentimentality without pandering to 21st century audiences who aren't accustomed.

For the role of Mary herself, no one is officially attached as of yet, though Anne Hathaway's name is certainly being thrown around. A lot. I think she'd be a fine, more than worthy choice. I was relieved, as someone who likes Anne Hathaway and doesn't understand why I'm not supposed to, when it seemed that she wouldn't be doing that Judy Garland biopic that was in development a while back. Should she play Mary, I do worry about the inexplicably pilloried actress having an even larger target on her back by stepping into such an iconic part. Other names being tossed around are pretty much the ones you'd expect. Any young actress who's been in a musical or shown vocal talent. 

Who would you like to see in the role of the magical singing nanny? Discuss in the comments.

 

Who Should Play Mary Poppins?
Anne Hathaway
Emily Blunt
Anna Kendrick
Amanda Seyfried
Sutton Foster
Gugu Mbatha-Raw
Someone Else Entirely!
I Don't Care. I'm Not Watching This!
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