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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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 "I saw "The Hobbit - It Finally Ends!" ...like the rest of the series it does deliver on spectacle and visual splendor.-John T

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Entries in Grand Budapest Hotel (24)

Monday
Dec152014

"Critics Choice" Flies With Keaton, Checks Into the Grand Budapest & Stands with Jolie, Unbroken

(We interrupt your Missi experience this morning to bring you more awards news. Missi returns this afternoon for two final posts.) 


If you missed my predictions and would like to mock them, they were here. The Critics Choice which will be broadcast live on A&E this year from the Iconic Hollywood Palladium (a new home and venue) on January 15th at 9 PM EST / 6 PM PST. I shall try and attend again. If I can get a better table. What? Travel expenses must be justified!

BEST PICTURE
Birdman - leading with 13 nominations
Boyhood - 8 nominations
Gone Girl - 6 nominations
Grand Budapest Hotel - second place with 11 nominations. wow
The Imitation Game - 6 nominations
Nightcrawler - 3 nominations
Selma - 5 nominations
Theory of Everything - 5 nominations
Unbroken - 4 nominations
Whiplash - 4 nominations

I suspected (aka predicted) that we'd see Unbroken and Gone Girl resurface in the conversation here. In fact the only prediction I got wrong was I didn't foresee Nightcrawler happening, fearing that the AFI love for American Sniper was significant. I think Boyhood will probably win in the end (especially given the weird halfhearted "comedy" section of the awards pulling votes away from Birdman) but good on Birdman for that astounding level of support.

I was really hoping for one non-Oscary thing though. I thought Under the Skin might have an outside chance for a shocker (and yes I voted for it).

JAKE GETS THE JOB and more after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Dec142014

SAG & Globe Reader Questions. Podcast Answers! 

Last week's tidal wave of precursor buzz - most notably the Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe nominations have everyone talking possible Oscar nominations. Those nominations are still one month away if you can believe it which gives us plenty of time to keep theorizing.

You asked a lot of questions. So Nathaniel, Nick and Katey answered them in this week's podcast!

How this one goes...
00:01 BFCA Ballot Buyer's Remorse. How many times did Katey vote for The Hundred-Foot Journey?
03:00 Is Jennifer Aniston going to happen?
05:15 Robert Duvall and/or Selma's Supporting Bids 
10:00 Humble Brag Jake Gyllenhaal Party
15:15 "What were they thinking?" & potential surprises
22:00 Julianne Moore's frontrunner status  
27:45 Boyhood's performances & Budapest's momentum
32:25 Rewatchability. Does it matter? Should it?
37:00 Miscellaneous Last thoughts
40:10 Julianne Moore Stinger 

You can listen at the bottom of the post or download from iTunes tomorrow. Continue the conversation in the comments. Hopefully though we answered your initial questions we raised even more talking points... 

Precursor Questions. Podcast Answer

Friday
Dec122014

Best Picture Predictions: Selma & Budapest on the Rise...

At this juncture in each film year, each week (hell, each day) brings another level of absurdity to the notion that anything is sure when it comes to Oscar. The awards table is constantly being shaken up and as soon as the pieces settle they're jostled again. All that and we're still almost three weeks away from actual Academy balloting for nominations.

you wish to have the curse reversed? get your screeners out first!

The tidal wave of awardage in early December reminds us once again that late December releases IF they are also late to screen can struggle. Still Alice and Cake, counter-examples, may be hiding from the public [ahem -grrr] but they premiered / screened regularly and early for the industry starting in September so their late arrivals haven't been a problem. Interstellar and Selma (both from Paramount) and A Most Violent Year (from A24) performed inconsistently without the benefit of awards screeners. Other late-to-screen releases (none of which have opened yet) including American Sniper, Into the Woods, Unbroken, and Big Eyes got screeners out but not in time for the SAG Nominating committee (from my understanding). Only Streep scored with a SAG nomination from those films.

And, let's face it, Into the Woods didn't even have to screen. Many many people in the world are willing to buy Meryl Streep on principal as Best even if they haven't yet seen whatever new character she's selling. (I wasn't joking when discussing her awards prospects on twitter when I said that only about once every 20 years do awards bodies en masse just decide to ignore her entirely in a given film year and we're not due for another one of those Brigadoon-like mystical occurences until 2024/2025. (If you're curious the last two times were Falling in Love in the 80s and Prime in the 00s)

Despite all the heat a Globe or SAG nomination or an LA / New York critics win can bring a film it's infinitely worth noting that Oscar balloting doesn't even begin until after Christmas so there are still important weeks ahead for all of these movies. In the end buzz only increases your likelihood that Academy members will watch your film. It doesn't necessarily mean that they'll like your film and vote for it. If you trust the precursors Whiplash isn't a threat for anything outside of Supporting Actor gold but I'm still willing to bet big on it in my predictions. At every industry event I've attended I've heard people speak of it with the kind of excitement that you can't buy with expensive PR pushes because the excitement is organic and personal taste driven. I'm not a huge fan of the film (though it has its moments and Damien Chazelle obviously has a big career ahead) but I hear actual love and not just respectful admiration when people talk about it and that is at least as good as, say, a Globe Best Picture Comedy or Musical nomination for Oscar heat, you know?

Best Picture is still something of a mystery, since we don't know how many nominees we will get or which of the 15 or so movies still in the running will be selected. We've had four completely consistent performers in the precursors that have already faced and won over both audiences and critics so you can lock them up: Birdman, Boyhood, The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything. But beyond that? Anyone's guess. 

The Globe love-in for Selma and that totally deserved but still a wee bit surprising SAG Cast nomination for Grand Budapest Hotel are arguably the 2 biggest deal awards occurrences this week. If AMPAS voters haven't yet decided to screen either of those films, you can be sure they're going to.

More questions: Can Foxcatcher, Gone Girl, or Interstellar reheat cooling buzz? Can Unbroken, Into the Woods, American Sniper, and A Most Violent Year rally their fan bases in the next two to three weeks? (Successful opening weekends definitely won't hurt if they can muster them.) 

What other questions are you asking about the best picture race? 

SEE UPDATED OSCAR CHARTS:
PICTURE | DIRECTOR | SCREENPLAYS

Tuesday
Dec092014

Online Film Critics Society Have Got 'Mommy' Issues

Well this is a pleasant surprise!

Glenn here with a look at the slate of nominees that the Online Film Critics Society sent our way today. You can thank me for a smidgen of the rather wonderful list since I am a member. The cynical person that I am assumed group think and the homogeny of the pack would give us the usual suspects, but the OFCS blessedly included some curveballs and left of field choices that should make the AFI and other singularly Oscar-hunting awards bodies look foolish. Let's take a look.

 

BEST PICTURE

  • BOYHOOD
  • THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL
  • IDA
  • THE LEGO MOVIE
  • MOMMY
  • NIGHTCRAWLER
  • SELMA
  • TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT
  • WHIPLASH
  • UNDER THE SKIN

This being an online critics organisation, they are going to lean a little bit to the "cool" side of things. Having said that, only four of the organisation's nominations for Best Picture are likely going to get correlating Oscar nominees - they could be Boyhood, Grand Budapest, Selma and Whiplash. The rest of the list is spectacularly diverse with three foreign language films, a semi-experimental sci-fi, a creepy genre thriller, and the other meta-superhero flick from 2014. Speaking of which, the omission of Birdman is as surprising as it is delightful. I mean, I like the movie, and certainly much more than Whiplash, but I have no qualms with it missing for the sake of Xavier Dolan's Mommy. Not one bit.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Dec092014

Curio: Holiday Wish List

Alexa here. This year my holiday wish list is filled with boring necessities: socks, bedding, towels, and the always welcome cash money. But on the sly I've been bookmarking some film-themed gifts that I would love to receive as an extra surprise, should Santa be willing.  I hope this list will help you shop for the film lover in your life, or give you some ideas to add to your own holiday wish list.

1. Wild at Heart mug set.  Honestly I can think of nothing better than drinking my morning coffee from Sailor or Lula.  The shop, BagApart, also offers mug sets inspired by Paris, Texas, Blade Runner, The Graduate and more.

 

Click for more Nic Cage, miniature Mendl's pastry, and Only Lovers Left Alive...

 

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Dec072014

Podcast: Special Behind-the-Scenes LAFCA Episode

For this unedited edition of the podcast, Nathaniel, Joe and Nick speak with Justin Chang from Variety about the Los Angeles Film Critics Association's annual voting, their commitment to voting their hearts free of the golden "O" word, their runaway favorites like Boyhood and the unlucky but well loved films like Grand Budapest and Birdman that were always in the mix but didn't win big. We also talk diversity of choices on the acting ballots and how surprises like Tom Hardy (Locke) and Agata Kulesza (Ida) come to happen in their two tiers of voting. How do they decide things like the Gena Rowlands career achievement prize and how close did Marion Cotillard come to this, the first critics prize of the season that eluded her. 

Have you even begun to digest this intense critics awards weekend? Did those long drawn out announcements Sunday stress you out? Unwind with this relaxed conversation about the Los Angeles third of the big day. You can listen at the bottom of the post or download from iTunes starting Monday night. Continue the conversation in the comments! 

LAFCA 2014 Discussion