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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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Entries in Holidays (83)

Tuesday
Dec252012

Santa's Helpers!

Happy Holidays

Merry Christmahanakkwanzukkah to all of you out there who make up The Film Experience's sexy, smart, diverse, magical, actress-loving, Oscar-obsessed cinephiliac community of readers. The site literally wouldn't still exist without you, whether that's through your blogging-fuel comments, e-mails of gratitude, cup o' joe donations (see right hand sidebar), and just general sharing and retweeting and emailing and the engaged fandom that has increased TFE's profile over the years enough to snag us the occassional ad buy, festival gig, BFCA membership, and audiences with and greetings from various goddesses

Thanks for being there over the years and thanks for still being there. If I had a magical sleigh and flying reindeers I'd drop gifts down each of your chimneys, but I only have this blog to give. More interviews, final Oscar nomination predictions, and Year-End goodies to come in the final two weeks before Oscar Nominations. 

May your holiday week be filled with...

Randy celebrations with regulation hotties...

Singing...

and dancing...

Renewed faith and life-affirming friendships...

Unforgettably festive surprises...

And, above all else for our purposes... Wonderful wonderful movies.

Now, go open your prezzies and see Les Miz and Django

XOXOXO

-Nathaniel R

Tuesday
Dec112012

Curio: Holiday Gift List

Alexa here. Every year I spot gifts that I can't quite find the right person for (oftentimes I just end up buying then for myself).  This year I've spotted some truly clever film-themed gifts on etsy that simply don't work for anyone on my list. Is there someone in your life who fits these profiles? If so, support these independent sellers!

1. For the fan of creepy Javier Bardem, how about this porcelain bust of Anton Chigurh?  Although I would love for there to be a companion bust of Silva, too. Bookends, maybe?

 

Channing Tatum, Les Miz and more after the jump 

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Dec042012

Curio: Film Greetings

Alexa here. This week I'll be busy sending out 100+ holiday cards, addressing the envelopes while I catch up on some shows on demand and maybe even watch that Bergman DVD that's been collecting dust on our shelf. If only we had more film buffs in our family (and people unafraid of a stray heroin joke), I'd be sending some of these clever film-themed greetings that would spread an entirely different kind of cheer. Enjoy!

A very Murray Christmas card from Little White Lies.

Loving these classic film greetings from Flapperdoodle, especially the idea of Harry Powell spreading cheer.

Some more greetings for Christmas or beyond after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Nov262012

Box Office Bounty For Thanksgiving

Buoyed by Twilight & 007 fanaticism, an abundance of newish Oscar contenders, and even a dusty remake for the crowd that doesn't care about Twilight or the Oscars or, you know, quality, there was something for everyone this Thanksgiving weekend! Moviegoers came out in droves for the biggest Thanksgiving at the movies ever.

So it's an extra long box office list today.

Box Office Top Twenty - Actuals
01 THE TWILIGHT SAGA FINALLY ENDS $43.6 (cum $227.3)
02 SKYFALL  $35.5 (cum. $221.1) Review & Deborah's Review
03 LINCOLN  $25.6 (cum. $62.8) Podcast Discussion
04 RISE OF THE GUARDIANS  $23.7 *NEW* (cum $32.3) Capsule Review
05 THE LIFE OF PI $22.4 *NEW* (cum. $30.5)
06 WRECK-IT RALPH  $16.5  (cum. $149.2)
07 RED DAWN $14.2 *NEW*  (cum. $21.6)
08 FLIGHT $8.4 (cum $74.7) Review
09 SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK $4.3  (cum $6.2) Beau's Review
10 ARGO $3.8 (cum $98)

11 TAKEN 2  $.9 (cum. $136.4)
12 ANNA KARENINA  $.8 (cum. $1.5) Capsule Review
13 PITCH PERFECT  $.7 (cum. $62.5) Capsule Review
14 THE SESSIONS $.7  (cum $3.9) Review
15 JAB TAK HAI JAAN  $.5  (cum. $3)
16 HERE COMES THE BOOM $.5 (cum. $42)
17 CLOUD ATLAS $.4 (cum $25.7)
18 THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER $.3  (cum $16.3) Capsule Review
19 HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA $.3 (cum $143.5)
20 LOOPER $.3  (cum. $65.5) Review

So many decisions this Thanksgiving. Alexei or Vronsky? Pumpkin or Pecan?

What did you see this weekend? If it's Here Comes The Boom, Red Dawn or Taken 2 eight weeks into its run please spend some time in the corner thinking about your life choices. If it was Hitchcock (just outside this list) my review is here but really I have to confess that I'm so deeply ashamed of it because JA wrote the most brilliant possible review anyone could have ever written about it. For real - read it

Saturday
Nov242012

The Perks of Being Anna Karenina's Guardian

By the end of each and every November I am buried in piles and piles of screeners in addition to screening invites each night (I'm not complaining) that all arrive within the same two week period (I am complaining). To give each film a fair shake you'd have to do nothing but watch movies for two weeks before ballots are due -- I'm terrified at how quickly my Critics Choice voting begins! In order to see all the films you want and rescreen those you have foggy memories of you'd have to a) give up Oscar parties, networking and campaign luncheons, b) turn down filmmaker interviews c) decline visits from family and friends and choose not to attend any holiday parties with them d) abandon your blog, your writing, and any work for clients and consulting jobs and thus all your money and e) refuse to sleep.

As I am unwilling and/or unable to give up any of those things, I admit to a certain distressing ohgodImafailure feeling each November. This is a longwinded way of saying that I'm super far behind and overwhelmed and I hope you'll all be patient though I know your first instinct is probably sympathy-free; "Bitch, you already saw Les Miz. Shut it!"

BRIEF THOUGHTS ON THREE MOVIES I HAVEN'T TALKED ABOUT

Rise of the Guardians
Santa isn't the main character but he's the character I kept thinking about while trying to organize my thoughts. Santa has "naughty" and "nice" tattoos and the movie is that way, too. In every respect it's a mixed bag, no matter how many gifts it has stuffed inside. Despite confusing character design (why are tooth fairy and easter bunny so scary looking?) and steady but strange characterizations (Santa laughs a lot but there's no vocalization whatsover that might be interpreted as a "ho ho ho"), the characters were sort of endearing. I really enjoyed Sandman, who doesn't speak but communications through shape-making, and Jack Frost who is visualized here as a teenbeat icy hipster twink. The film is often gorgeous but it's also so over-designed as to be instantly forgettable as it leaps from busy lair to busy lair of these iconic characters. The story is both overly familiar and alien (what's with that 'listen to the man on the moon' messaging?) and nonsensical. Most of it all it just smells weird; that's the aroma of frenzied "ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED?" flop sweat. C-
Oscar? There is still plenty of debate as to which toon will win the Best Animated Feature this year, but given the strength of the field, Guardian's chaotic overkill doesn't bode well for its chances.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Logan Lerman is Charlie, an introverted troubled high school freshmen (hence the title) who finds solace in writing and literature and renewed energy for life when a group of "misfit" seniors take him under their wing. The best moments of this adaptation of the beloved best-seller resonate with tender universality but the screenplay (and I assume source material) are problematic. High school is traumatic enough without actual trauma as ever present backstory. Why all the gilding of such a delicate lily? B+/B
Oscar? Traction would be a stretch in any category given that youth oriented films, no matter how heartfelt and soulfully performed, are rarely recognized. Still... this is a significant leap forward for all three of its principles: Logan Lerman does his best work yet anchoring the film; Ezra Miller proves he has a much wider range than After School and We Need To Talk About Kevin suggested; and yes even Emma Watson -- who longtime readers will know I've been ice cold on -- impresses.

Anna Karenina
Brief Thoughts: If Joe Wright's brazenly theatrical take on this oft adapted classic about a respectable Russian wife who loses her place in society to her obsessive affair with a young soldier isn't the year's strangest film (The Master and Holy Motors fight for that honor), it's still one of the most compelling high wire acts. The stylization, which mostly turns on an ever shifting stage set and constant art and film history referencing, isn't always consistent and the film feels like an almost-musical so often it borders on torture (for musical aficionados at least). But there's something about all the eye-popping scenic changes, grand acting gestures, mobile camera, and plot riffing rather than storytelling that give the film a propulsive self-absorbed energy that dovetails perfectly with the stubborn sexual obsessiveness of Anna herself.  B+
Oscar? The film will undoubtedly prove too divisive for major prize-gathering -- hell, I'm the target audience and even I am of two minds about it -- but it still has a fighting shot at the eye candy categories or, as we like to call them, the Moulin Rouge! prizes (a film it often recalls). If the actor's branch is feeling daring, they might want to take a closer look at Keira Knightley's huge star turn. She's getting braver and more adept at stylization all the time. She's the ideal model for Joe Wright's picture-making. Knightley will never be everyone's favorite actress but there's much to admire in this gutsy editorial posing performance.

Recent Reviews / Discussions
Les Misérables (first screening)
Lincoln (on the podcast)
Skyfall (review)
The Master (with a little Holy Motors thrown in) 
Silver Linings Playbook (Beau's review) 

Friday
Nov232012

Thanksgiving Linkovers

Good afternoon! I only had one piece of pumpkin pie last night so it absolutely cannot be counted as an unqualified success of a Thanksgiving. So, desperate for leftovers (I wasn't even sent home with any spare pie!), I turn to good blogs, the whip cream of this internet pie.

Film Dr. a pictorial primer on Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2
MNPP JA's living vicariously through Amanda Seyfried fixation continues unabated
Towleroad homoerotic Skyfall poster 

In Contention the first of countless top ten lists, Cahiers du Cinema finds Holy Motors at the top
DP/30 Jake Gyllenhaal talks End of Watch. Which I still haven't seen. I am a bad Gyllenhaalic this year. (I also missed Won't Back Down
Awards Daily Sasha interviews Ang Lee (Life of Pi)
LA Times Tracy Letts says he didn't alter much about August: Osage County for the screen in his screenplay. So... it's three hours long then? 
MovieLine Noomi Rapace does her best Mick Jagger in a new music video. But is it Mick Jaggery enough? 
Empire Marisa Tomei may co-star in a new Hugh Grant romcom. I can see that pairing totally working.

Finally...
Timothy Brayton, easily one of the best (and most completist-friendly) online film critics, has ranked every single Bond film (with each link going to a new review) the Bond Girls and each James Bond. That's a lot of 007. 

Yes yes. I'll post the results of the readers poll here soon -- sorry for the holiday delay -- but before we are totally Bonded out, knock back a martini with Tim's reviews and lists.

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