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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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DAY FOR NIGHT -another great movie about movies

I'm not sure if I like it more than 8 1/2 or Singing in the Rain, but when the majestic trumpet music plays, it reminds me of why I love cinema in the first place. The actors are terrific in this film as well. However, nothing will top Topsy-Turvy for me about the mystery,repetition, and heartbreak of the artistic process.❞ -Lars

 

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Entries in box office (169)

Friday
Feb152013

Posterized: Bruce Willis, Perennial

I raced excitedly to a A Good Day To Die Hard screening earlier this week though I couldn't quite put my finger on why. As a rule of thumb, I love Bruce Willis but I don't exactly seek his movies out and haven't seen a Die Hard since the second one. (I've been the furthest thing from a loyal fan mostly because he churns out so many disposable actioners.) I was just in the right mood I guess though I am sad to report that it felt like a phone-in.

But for this week's edition of Posterized, I thought we'd look back on his whole career. I've previously applauded him for his unheralded range. Which is to say that even though he is always "Bruce Willis" he can easily slip into auteur pieces, comedies, dramas, and action flicks without ever disrupting the site-specific tonal demands. That's as true of a definition of Movie Star who also happens to be a Fine Actor as I know of. But the posters disagree with me since every other one cribs some element from the original Die Hard (1988) poster, Bruce with a tense side stare, Bruce pursing those thin lips, Bruce holding a gun (or signifying that a gun is just outside the frame with battle gear on). Every movie wants to be Die Hard... especially all the subsequent Die Hards. Die Hard 2 may be the most hilarious example of the unspoken sequel motto ("be the same movie over again... only bigger")

The "Moonlighting" Years (85-89)
aka Cybil (TV) and Demi (The Movies) share him
Blind Date (1987), Sunrise (1987), Die Hard (1988)

Seemingly hundreds of movies after the jump! How many have you seen?

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Sunday
Feb102013

Melissa McCarthy Robs the Box Office Blind

It was a big big weekend for Melissa McCarthy, who capitalized on that big Bridesmaids breakthrough with her first huge headliner opening of the year in Identity Thief. I use the word "first" because clearly there'll be a second. Her buddy comedy with Sandra Bullock The Heat opens in just two months time. Here's why I knew Identity Thief would be big: three of my friends -- two of whom are rarely seen inside movie theaters (the last thing they saw was Skyfall) -- both told me they wanted to see it. 

box office chart repurposed and photoshopped from boxoffice.com

Critics were not kind to the comedy. And that's before we even get to the subject of Rex Reed who notoriously called McCarthy a "female hippo" in his review prompting outrage 'round the web (i.e. more name-calling only this time directed at Reed and his age instead of McCarthy and her weight). But I liked Gawker's take. If the movie is seriously as bad as people are saying, shouldn't McCarthy who is obviously talented and truly funny, bare some responsibility? Why do reliably funny actors so rarely star in actually hilarious movies? (I remember being shocked while watching Date Night and Baby Mama that the movies were not half as funny as Tina Fey is as Tina Fey.) Is the problem that funny people are asked to be the entire joke?

Other Box Office Stories...

  • Side Effects opened to a non-stellar non-embarrassing $10 million
  • Argo went wide again to capitalize on Oscar buzz and rejoined the top ten
  • Top Gun got a 3D conversion earning just under $2 million (and a new limited edition 3D Blu-Ray)
  • Silver Linings Playbook continues to inch toward the $100 million Best Picture Nominee club which is very crowded this year.

What did you see this weekend? I finally watched Yossi but otherwise it wasn't a movie weekend for me.

Sunday
Feb032013

Lawrence & Hoult Reunited... At the Box Office

Jennifer Lawrence recently split from X-Man boyfriend Nicolas Hoult and now they're reunited ...sort of... at the box office. He's a sort of dead heartthrob with a thing for a charismatic blonde in Warm Bodies while she's a charismatic blonde with a thing for a barely living headcase in Silver Linings Playbook.

Top of the Box Office
01 WARM BODIES $19.5 *NEW*
02 HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS  $9.2 (cum. $34.4) 
03 SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK  $8.1 (cum. $80.3)  Beau's Review
04 MAMA  $6.7 (cum $58.2) 
05 ZERO DARK THIRTY $5.3 (cum. $77.7)

In other movie/money news: Bullet to the Head, the only wide release going up against the zombie romcom Warm Bodies, came in at #6 which is amusing since that's how you generally kill the walking dead; The Best Picture nominees continue to make a lot of bank in the bottom half of the top dozen box office with those long legs at the box office;  A Royal Affair which is competing with Amour for Best Foreign Film just crossed the $1 million mark in US arthouses, always a significant line for subtitled pictures. Amour has reached $2.5 million, the lowest grossing Best Picture for decades... though it's still in under 100 theaters. (Expansion still in progress. Stay tuned.) Globally speaking it's still slightly behind Caché and The White Ribbon as the most successful Haneke picture. 

What did you see this weekend? Or were you all about The Superbowl?

Sunday
Jan202013

Box Office Playbook: Jessica vs. Jennifer

As if doing battle like Best Actress Gladiators both Jessica Chastain and Jennifer Lawrence are all over the nation's theaters. They'll be horns locked for the next 5 weeks in the media, I'll bet. JLaw was joking about beating JChas to the Oscar on SNL -- too gently? -- but it was Jessica who won the box office. And twice over. The last time I remember that happening was Leonardo DiCaprio at Christmas 2002 I think (Gangs of New York and Catch Me If You Can?)  [UPDATE: Sharp-eyed TFE Reader Brian Z actually reminds us that it happened in 2011 too... also with Jessica Chastain for The Help and The Debt]

On a related side note: I just know I'm going to start calling them Jessica Lawrence and Jennifer Chastain before long; name slippage is coming!

Box Office Top Ten
01 MAMA $28.1 *NEW* Jose likes the wig
02 ZERO DARK THIRTY  $17.6 (cum. $55.9) Top Ten List  
03 SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK  $11.3 (cum. $55.3)  Beau's Review
04 GANGSTER SQUAD  $9.1 (cum $32.2) 
05 BROKEN CITY $9 *NEW* 
06 A HAUNTED HOUSE  $8.3  (cum. $29.9)
07 DJANGO UNCHAINED $8.2 (cum. $138.3) More on Django
08 LES MISERABLES $7.8 (cum $130.3) Top Ten List
09 THE HOBBIT $6.4  (cum $287.3)
10 THE LAST STAND $6.3 *NEW* 

In other movie/money news: Skyfall became only the 10th movie to break the $300 million barrier in the US box office this decade (Alice in Wonderland and The Hunger Games are the only non-sequels in that list... though both are franchisey in that remake or kick-off kind of way); Two very expensive movie gambles Life of Pi and Rise of the Guardians will inch over the $100 million mark in the next few days which must be a relief even if it doesn't quite spell "big profit!"; Chasing Ice, a nominee for Best Original Song, crossed the $1 million mark which is a big deal for documentaries; Sony Pictures Classics are still being really conservative with Amour -- it's only in 36 theaters despite 5 Oscar nominations last week though they grossed nearly ½ a million this weekend; And despite nobody caring about it or talking about it whatsoever Tom Cruise's latest actioner Jack Reacher crossed the $75 million mark this weekend... Oscar season always makes it easy to forget that a huge portion of the moviegoing public never even thinks about "Oscar Season".

WEIRD, RIGHT? 

Speaking of the public -- though the specific and not the general --  what did you see this weekend?

the three most popular movie musicals since Cabaret. Les Misérables is nearing their lofty box office heights

P.S. Les Misérables only needs a few more weeks of heat -- which Oscar season will surely provide -- to pass Mamma Mia! and become the third most popular movie musical of the modern era stateside (after Grease & Chicago). Of course the atrocious Mamma Mia! has the absurd distinction of being so popular around the globe (over ½ a billion) that it's actually the most successful modern musical if you include the entire world in your overview. Usually we prefer to be international but Mamma Mia!? Blargh!

 

Sunday
Jan202013

Raven Haired "Mama" 

Jose here. By the time this weekend's over, Jessica Chastain will have finished taking over the world her latest movies in the first and second spots of the box office (help me out here, has this happened before?), which might not mean she's a money-making sensation (at least not yet) but will undoubtedly expose her brilliance to a broader audience. The Oscar nominated Zero Dark Thirty, whose commercial success is undoubtedly owed to the torture controversy, dropped to second place, while the horror movie Mama is set to open as number one with a figure in the mid-twenty millions

http://thefilmexperience.net/blog/2013/1/20/raven-haired-mama.html

The Guillermo del Toro-produced movie seems to be a good 'ole "mediocre January horror flick" but it's actually not half bad. I saw it earlier today and was shocked upon realizing I hadn't rolled my eyes a single time. The Chastainite in me wants to say the movie owes itself to her, but in reality, the direction and cinematography seem like a breath of fresh air compared to what this genre has given us lately. [More Chastain after the jump...]

 

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