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Entries in booze (32)

Saturday
May182019

...

Same, Supes, same. 

Sunday
Apr212019

1972: Oversharing with "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie"

TFE will be periodically looking back at the 1972 film year before we hit the Supporting Actress Smackdown next Sunday. Here's Paolo


This is going to sound like I’m overestimating my writing power but here goes. The symbolism within Luis Buñuel’s The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie, Oscar's Best Foreign Film winner of 1972, is easy to write about. Up to interpretation, as they say. What isn’t easy is writing about the feelings the movie evokes. In short, I might be explaining jokes, which slightly offends me as a fan of comedy. But I’m going to do it anyway, since the humor is the first thing that comes to mind in writing about what is arguably Buñuel’s most personal movie. 

The film is about six white bourgeois people who just want to eat but someone or something keeps interrupting them. (I have the same dream... but it's not about food.)

Click to read more ...

Monday
Apr082019

1972: Soaked in Booze with "The Ruling Class"

TFE will be periodically looking back at the 1972 film year before we hit the Supporting Actress Smackdown at month's end. Here's Anna from Defiant Success

Adapted from the play of the same name by Peter Barnes (who also serves the film’s writer), Peter Medak’s The Ruling Class establishes its bizarre nature early on. The plot kicks off after Ralph Gurney, the 13th Earl of Gurney (Harry Andrews) accidentally hangs himself while performing autoerotic asphyxiation. Upon his death, his only surviving son Jack (Peter O’Toole) becomes the 14th Earl of Gurney. One problem with this new arrangement: Jack firmly believes that he’s Jesus Christ...

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Thursday
Apr052018

Months of Meryl: Ironweed (1987)

John and Matthew are watching every single live-action film starring Meryl Streep. 

 #14 — Helen Archer, a dying homeless alcoholic.

JOHN: Behold, the most devastating sequel to Heartburn imaginable. Directed by Hector Babenco and adapted by William Kennedy from his own Pulitzer-winning novel, Ironweed follows Francis (Jack Nicholson) and Helen (Streep), two homeless drifters biding their time and eking out their lives in Depression-era Albany. At nearly two and a half hours long, Ironweed is a bleak, wrenching study of poverty with nary a promise of redemption in sight. We’re talking about a movie whose most uplifting and musical scene is chased with a crushing dose of hopeless reality, a movie in which dogs assail a woman’s frozen corpse outside a church, digging graves is considered a good day’s work, and ramshackle vagrants pray they drink enough liquor to die in their sleep. It’s a tough sell and an even tougher sit, but Ironweed features one of Streep’s most spellbinding transformations.

Helen Archer does not make her entrance for a good twenty minutes. First we watch Nicholson’s Francis dig graves, slug whiskey, and fecklessly address the headstone of his deceased infant son, who he dropped and killed in a drunken daze. In the basement of a church serving free hot meals for the homeless, Helen slips through the door, a regular who, after some time away, returns to more of the same, reuniting with her moribund companion Francis. Streep’s Helen is shrewd enough to get herself warm and fed, but something about Helen suggests that she isn’t entirely there; it’s almost as if she is suspended halfway between life and death, past and present.

Helen, who we will come to learn is a former singer and concert pianist, constantly recollects the glory of her dashed dreams with utmost clarity, as again Streep is able to conjure a memory so expressively that one believes it to be as true as fact...

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Saturday
Jul012017

Young and Hungry Susan Hayward

HAYWARD CENTENNIAL FINALE

by Nathaniel R

Oscar buffs might be the only people who still regularly talk about Susan Hayward but her Oscar record was impressive enough to warrant that conversation. Five nominations with one win, all in the Best Actress category, is not nothing. In fact, her record is a match with Audrey Hepburn and Anne Bancroft and another Susan (Sarandon). But when I first got interested in Susan Hayward before I'd seen any of her films, what drew me in was the abundant hysteria within the posters, titles, and taglines for her movies. Or to quote Rupert Everett in My Best Friend's Wedding:


The misery. The exquisite tragedy. The Susan Hayward of it all!"

She lived (onscreen at least) for exclamation points so it's fitting then that her Oscar win came from I Want to Live! (1958). But to close out our celebration counterintuitively in reverse, let's end with a film from when Hayward was a young and hungry actress without much pull...

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Wednesday
Jun282017

Susan Hayward in "My Foolish Heart"

SUSAN HAYWARD CENTENNIAL WEEK

by Timothy Brayton

Yesterday, Eric did an extraordinary job of tackling Susan Hayward's performance in I'll Cry Tomorrow (1955), which I think a lot of us might agree was her all-time best performance. Today, I'd like to offer up what I consider to be her most Susan Haywardiest performance: as the good girl-turned-wretched alcoholic in 1949's My Foolish Heart, the film that netted Hayward the second of her five Oscar nominations.

It's a story tailored with laser focus on letting the lead actress show off Everything with a capital "E"...

Click to read more ...