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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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Silence of the Lambs Retrospective

 

"Don't help the man with the broken arm! Don't get in his van! Too late... She does it every time. Which is why this is such a good movie: it really makes us care, and even when we know what's going to happen, we hope it won't."- Edward

"Such a great BP winner. I remember seeing it when I was a teenager and even then I noticed the eyelines being so close to the camera, and the way Clarice was framed in a male-dominated world as though she was being watched and judged." - MSD

 

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Entries in Film Bitch Awards (79)

Thursday
Mar262015

Best Limited or Cameo Role. The Women

In the imaginary awards ceremony we hold for the Film Bitch Awards each year (when: January through March; where: Nathaniel's brain and on this website) Missi Pyle as "Ellen Abbott" announces the nominees for the limited or cameo role categories. With three or four sharp scenes in Gone Girl she's too big for this category but she's good TV, you must agree. Getting the balance right for this category is tricky. Which roles are too big to fit? Many of the people who immediately popped to mind this year as "cameos" were really were more than that. Oprah Winfrey is great in that crucial opening expose about voter suppression in Selma but she also marches, gets arrested and her throughline doubles as the whole narrative arc of the movie, so we couldn't really include her. Lindsay Duncan in Birdman, was another close call, but we opted to include due to only two scenes even though she's the focus.

We take this seriously y'all. As proof look at all these fine actresses we were considering... 

Top left to right by row: Karin Myrenberg (Force Majeure), Charlotte Rampling (Young & Beautiful), Lesley Manville (Mr Turner); Jena Malone (Inherent Vice); Alison Pill (Snowpiercer); Lindsay Duncan (Birdman); Hong Chau (Inherent Vice); Sela Ward (Gone Girl); Anamaria Marinca (Fury); Menna Trusslar (Pride); Tilda Swinton (Grand Budapest Hotel); Annie Funke (A Most Violent Year); Uma Thurman (Nymphomaniac Vol. 1); Casey Rose Wilson (Gone Girl); Kathleen Rose Perkins (Gone Girl); Karina Fernandez (Pride)

And here are the nominees, wrapping up nominations in all categories for the 15th annual Film Bitch Awards. The nomination stats are at the bottom of the "best scenes" page if you're interested. Gold, Silver and Bronze medals in all categories will be handed out this weekend.

Monday
Mar232015

Q&A Part 1: No Actresses! Whatever Will We Talk About?

To try something a little different I asked y'all to ask me questions that were not actress related this week. Hold me, I'm scared.

But sometimes you gotta push out of the comfort zone. Some people disobeyed -- sorry, not answering those! Some people gave me ideas for much longer posts. Others took it quite literally just reversing the genders of a question they'd normally ask. But a lot of interesting questions were on offer this week so we'll split this baby into two this week, feeling generous. Part two tomorrow.

Here's the 8 questions we're answering today including but not limited to favorite (male) stars, awesome film sets, horror flicks, and costume dramas...

DAN: What film set, taking in mind color schemes, evocative moods, and lighting, would you most like to inhabit. Ignore modern conveniences like air conditioning and pleasant smells. 

NATHANIEL: This question is so open-ended so we'll start with the movie that popped into mind IMMEDIATELY whilst reading it and surprised me becasue it wouldn't leave: Vertigo.


There are so many great rooms you could imagine spending hours in. Midge's apartment is like bohemian artist / spinster heaven. And what a view. And who wouldn't make a multi-course dinner reservation at that red red  red restaurant that Scottie spots Madeleine in?

[More...]

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Mar212015

Best Limited or Cameo Role. The Men

It's time for the final two categories in this year's Film Bitch Awards, the Limited or Cameo roles. Which is to say the actors who have only two scenes or less or who are continually backgrounded but for like one spotlight scene. It's an inexact science for sure and the line becomes blurry sometimes with supporting. [Breaking news: a former nominee in these limited/cameo categories whose star is rising will be guest blogging next month for a special day! More on that soon.]

This may sound silly to more casual readers but I agonize over these categories nearly as much as their Oscar correlatives. In fact the entire reason that I still haven't posted the women -- I had planned to post both at once naturally -- is that I haven't narrowed it down to 5 yet. I'm stuck at 8 and don't want to lose any of them.

So first up, the men...

Though Wild and Selma (nominee Henry G. Sanders as "Cager Lee" pictured above), offered plentiful options, and Two Days One Night was undeniable (kudos Timur Magomedgadzhie, left) the possibilities actually weren't obviously abundant. Perhaps this is because men dominate movies so thoroughly that the very small parts tend to be played by women and maybe there's a slight possibility that this actressexual doesn't notice the men quite as much who fill out the frame in group scenes. But let's not distract ourselves from the business at hand:  Here's the nominee and finalist lists.

Sunday
Mar152015

Film Bitch Awards... Openings, Endings, and Titles

Three of the final five Film Bitch Award categories announced. Click over for the nominations!


When I think of my wife I always think of her head. I picture cracking her lovely skull, unspooling her brains, trying to get answers.

BEST OPENING SCENE
Did you find any opening scene as perfectly bold as Gone Girl's recently? It's instantly classic as kick-offs go. Still horrified two months later that Gillian Flynn didn't get an Adapted Screenplay nomination. WTF. Her work was stronger than any of the nominees in her category (the good stuff was in Original this past year obviously). But that wasn't the only entrancing first minute of a film. Under the Skin's "creation" (?) anyone?

BEST ENDING 
Spoiler alert! Movies have endings. Some more satisfying than others. Which were your favorites this year? Were you a bawling but optimistic and newly invigorated civil rights champion at the end of Selma, Pride, or Love is Strange? Was that desert gaze into an open future the perfect ending for Boyhood? Were you chanting USA ironically with the bloodthirsty crowd at the end of Foxcatcher or gazing up with Emma Stone in Birdman or Reese Witherspoon in Wild?

CREDIT SEQUENCES 
I didn't nominated The Grand Budapest Hotel here but I do love that tiny dancing Russian at the tail end of the credits and his exuberant dancing (i wish I had a gif of the confetti throwing part). That's basically a documentary of what happens in my apartment every time I finish an article. As for this category, it shouldn't surprise you to see Captain America: Winter Soldier's bold black white and red pop art as a nominee but do you remember those hilarious cast photos from Neighbors in the closing credits? I almost forgot them which would have been a tragedy. 

I mean...

 

Two categories left (acting in limited or cameo roles) so stay tuned for that and the gold silver and bronze medals this week as grand finale to 2014's film year. Hooray!

(And now I'm off to do that little dance backstage. Byeeeee.)

Monday
Mar022015

Q&A

Yay! It's the return of the long departed much requested Q&A column. Readers ask questions. I pick a handful or two to answer on Mondays. Hopefully it'll be rejuvenating. Every March I feel more like the banner up top. It's the collapsing period post-Oscar.

Let's get right to it and see how long I can keep up it this spring.

JOEY: Now that Julianne has her Oscar, which overdue actress would you most want to see walk away with her golden boy? Annette? Michelle? Someone else?

NATHANIEL: Obviously the 1980s were when AMPAS screwed up most in terms of key actresses who defined the time not being rewarded. This accounts for Close, Weaver, Turner, and Pfeiffer being unOscared. Assuming it's too late for them (and I do) the best I can hope for is the Academy to stop thinking only men deserve Honorary Oscars and take care of at least one of them. Also: is it too greedy to say that Kidman needs a second to remind everyone of her bonafide movie stardom?

ANDY: Looking back on your past Film Bitch Awards, do you regret giving a particular performance your win?

the answer and six more questions after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Feb192015

Awards Season Dichotomy: Easy Calls & Tough Choices

With time rapidly running out until we get to Oscar - we're just 3 days away - I'm afraid there's no time left for obsessive predictive postings and chart updates. So as a final predictive wrap up, we illustrate one of the conundrums of awards season via Oscar Predictions and our own Film Bitch Awards. With Oscar it seems categories often become either truly easy calls or are just impossible to figure. For the conscientous voter, personal ballots are never easy calls. They're another matter entirely.

To quote the witch Ursula who is not good and not nice but just right:

Life's full of tough choices, in'n't it?

Speaking of personal choices, if you haven't yet voted on the polls on each chart page, go and do that. I'll announce the Reader's Choice this Saturday before the Oscars.

OSCAR PREDICTIONS

Isn't it weird how things just line up for Oscar's  "duh" calls for predictions each year-- even if there's no appreciable difference in quality or the quality actually goes another way? So as recap. Here are the final predictions. Later today I'm doing a piece for Towleroad where you can read further thoughts on all of this if you haven't got enough of it right here. I also urge you to check out the Gurus of Gold chart at Movie City News to see what the general consensus is versus where I and maybe you if you predict at home, fall.

THE EASIEST CALLS
Actress  Julianne Moore, Still Alice (just discussed)
Supporting Actor J.K. Simmons, Whiplash (a press favorite all year)
Supporting Actress Patricia Arquette, Boyhood 
Production Design / Costume Design -Stockhausen & Canonero for Grand Budapest Hotel 
Cinematography Emmanuel Lubeski - Birdman 

SEEMINGLY EASY CALLS BUT THESE CATEGORIES ARE KNOWN FOR UPSETS
Foreign Film -Ida
Documentary  - Citizen Four
Makeup - Grand Budapest Hotel 

SLIGHTLY MORE COMPLICATED CALLS
Actor - Eddie Redmayne, Theory of Everything I understand some are arguing for a Cooper stealth win or a Keaton triumph with Birdman surging but I'm sticking by my original prediction. Oscar has always been deeply fascinated by mimicry and by men playing characters with physical challenges.

TRULY DIFFICULT CALLS
Picture/Director I'm going with a Boyhood/Birdman split though any combo or double from either makes sense. It's all terribly mystifying (Discussed on the podcast)
Visual Effects Interstellar (though I'm not confident)
Editing Whiplash (though Boyhood seems just as likely)
Original Screenplay Grand Budapest (or will it be Birdman?)
Adapted Screenplay Imitation Game (with an outside shot for Whiplash)
Doc Short Glenn thinks Crisis Hotline. I'm going with Joanna
Live Action Short The Phone Call
Animation Short Tim thinks Feast or The Dam Keeper. I'm going with The Bigger Picture
Score Theory of Everything
Sound Mixing Whiplash
Sound Editing American Sniper

And that's it for predictions. I look forward to being completely wrong this year. I love the volatile years most. Punditry is no fun when it's too easy.

FILM BITCH AWARDS

As for my own annual prizes with their own rich history... those are still in progress and much fussed over though the Oscar Correlative categories are all fully complete.

4 nominations for NIGHTCRAWLERNATHANIEL'S BALLOT - ALWAYS TOUGH CHOICES
PAGE 1 - Picture, Director, Screenplay, Animated (complete)
PAGE 2 - Acting (newly completed!)
PAGE 3 - Visuals (newly completed!)
PAGE 4 - Aurals and Oscar-Parallel Tally (newly completed with love for The Homesman, Gone Girl, Begin Again and more...) 

...and the extra "fun" categories are still in progress though there's a little something on each page now to whet your appetite.

PAGE 5 - Extras (new kudos for Pride, Love is Strange & Selma)
PAGE 6 - Character Prizes 
PAGE 7 - Scene Work