DON'T MISS THIS!

Season Finale this Tuesday Night
HIT ME WITH YOUR BEST SHOT: Splash (1984)

Watch it.  Pick a shot. Join us! 

Oscar History
Welcome

The Film Experience™ was created by Nathaniel R. Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, or by a member of our amazing team as noted.

Like The Film Experience on Facebook

Powered by Squarespace
What'cha Looking For?
Comment Fun

Comment(s) Du Jour
100 Best of the 21st Century?

"Carol >>>>>>>>>> most of these movies" - Clarence

"The more I see these snooty lists, the more I get turned off of by film critics. What about Lord of the Rings, The Hours, The Devil Wears Prada..." -Jono

"Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind - The movie you're hoping to see every time you go in the cinema" - Jeremy

 

Keep TFE Strong

 

LOVE THE SITE? DONATE 

Your suscription dimes make an enormous difference to The Film Experience in terms of stability and budget to dream bigger. Consider...

I ♥ The Film Experience

THANKS IN ADVANCE

For those who can't commit to a dime a day, consider a one time donation for an article or a series you are glad you didn't have to live without.

Subscribe

Entries in Michael Shannon (23)

Friday
Jul152016

Yes No Maybe So: "Loving"

As far as first looks go, the La La Land trailer might have sucked all the air out of the room this week, but we also got a trailer for another Oscar hopeful: Cannes entry Loving. It left Cannes empty handed for prizes, but there was pletny of praise for the film and buzz for leading lady Ruth Negga. You can bank we'll be talking about this one before it finally arrives stateside in November all the way to the big show.

While that transfixing glimpse at Land was more a feast for the eyes and ears, the Loving trailer goes right for the heart. I know I'm higher on Jeff Nichols than most of Team Experience, so I can admit that I'm a little biased on the film already, even if I agree that his other film this year Midnight Special was his weakest. After flirting with fable and genre in his past three films, how will a more straight forward narrative work for the auteur this time?

Does the trailer make us any more or less excited? Let's break it down after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Apr262016

Throw Me to the Wolves

Team Experience from the Tribeca Film Festival - here's Jason on "Wolves."

After walking out of the screening a good friend asked me incredulously what on Earth drew me, me of all people, to go see the basketball slash gambling coming-of-age drama Wolves - I'm not exactly the choice audience for sports stories. But my answer was quick and easy: Michael Shannon and Carla Gugino, of course! And as such, Wolves is worth seeing. Those two play the parents of Anthony (a solid Taylor John Smith) and if you've ever dug watching them work, here they work! Overtime!

What they have to work with is a bit, as they say, well-worn: Shannon's father figure is a gambling addict and Gugino's mama bear has been putting up with that for too long. The film (written and directed by Bart Freundlich aka Mr Julianne Moore) leans hard on those tropes, but it also stares down with honesty and heart (mostly) and the performers are excellent enough to overcome, and carve their initials on them. It all leads pretty much where you think it will, down the court on the ever counting clock, but the circuitous route's (mostly) worth traveling.

One big exception -- there's an older basketball playing gentleman called (sigh) Socrates that fits the so-called "Magical Negro" mold so rigidly it's like an unironic Mammy suddenly stumbled out of the bushes. Socrates has no reason whatsoever to go out of his way to teach this dopey kid, much less follow him around and dispense wisdom like an automaton, yet there he always is at just the right moment with no life or interests of his own save aiding Saint Anthony. Can we move past this please? Socrates' got his own shit, son.

Sunday
Apr242016

They Ain't Nothin' But Two Hound-dogs

Team Experience is at the Tribeca Film Festival. Here's Jason on 'Elvis & Nixon.'

We get a "Thank you, thank you very much" fairly early into Elvis & Nixon, the new comic bio-pic detailing that legendarily bizarre photograph of the musician and the politician shaking hands in 1970, and that tips the movie's hat toward its will to please - this is a genial little thing, a bejeweled trifle, that leaves these two men's storm-clouds mostly off-screen at the horizon, opting instead for a light-hearted clash of Fame and Power and the Great Men who wield either/or. At times the Jack Benny score wouldn't feel out of place.

Not that not taking itself overly serious is a demerit by any means - Michael Shannon is The King of taking himself awfully seriously, so it's a relief to see him relax here under a different crown. He never really looks the part, but then everybody looks the part enough when you slap enough Presley paraphernalia on them (there's a wry little scene where Elvis meets an Elvis impersonator at the airport that messes with these notions of identity and self) - so Shannon under-plays and amuses through that under-play, allowing everybody around him to fill in the gaps. His Elvis is one who knows what a change in temperature his very presence causes upon entering a room, so why work so hard? Everybody will remember what they remember, regardless of what he does or doesn't do.

Kevin Spacey too tries to turn Tricky Dick into a goof, but that's a taller order (Dan Hedaya did the best job I've seen in the movie Dick, by leaning hard into Nixon's oversized assholishness) and he's given less to work with than Shannon - the film's clearly more interested in its Graceland cast of characters then the White House suits; unless I'm forgetting something I don't think we ever see Spacey outside of the Oval Office? 

Anyway once the fateful meeting finally comes to pass, the movie screeches to a halt in the best sense - indeed I think it would've been a better movie had it found a way to slow time to such a standstill that it extended these scenes out for even more of its run-time. We never much care about anything else that the script tries to make us care about, but there's real burning love between its two main attractions.

Grade: B-

Thursday
Apr212016

The Irresistible Danger of Matthias Schoenaerts and Michael Shannon

 As we continue Actor Month here's Murtada on Matthias Schoenaerts & Michael Shannon.

One might ask what do Matthias Schoenaerts and Michael Shannon have in common. A hulking body (stocky Schoenaerts and tall angular Shannon). Intensity? Yes but also a certain menacing danger that sweeps through in every performance. It's a danger that comes out sexy with Schoenaerts and somewhat evil with Shannon. One never knows what they are going to do next, and that's why they are so mesmerizing to watch.

 

 

 

 

 

Click to read more ...

Friday
Apr012016

Midnight Special Coda

Here's Murtada with a spoilery deconstruction of one scene in Midnight Special

The coda after the ending of Jeff Nichols’ Midnight Special is between two characters that are not the family at the center of this sci fi story. The interaction between Joel Edgerton and Adam Driver made me realize why the movie left me emotionally cold. I cared more about these peripheral characters than the main characters, or the story. At least for a minute or two...

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Mar272016

Linkman v Superblog

The New Yorker pays tribute to Garry Shandling who passed away suddenly on Thursday
Salon remembers the polarizing response to David Lynch's Blue Velvet 30 years ago
Lee Pace Network they did a "posterized" of sorts on Lee Pace's filmography only with gifs - how many have you seen? I've only seen 7 but he sure is nice to look at
Washington Post fascinating story on Hollywood's latest beauty trend: expensive post-production digital retouching 
Vulture interviews RuPaul
/Film so sad but HBO's Togetherness starring Mark Duplass and Melanie Lynskey has been cancelled. 
Playbill awwww. Hairspray and Smash composer and 5 time Oscar nominee Marc Shaiman got married. Patti LuPone, Nathan Lane, Bette Midler, and Whoopi were guests! 

Meta Humans
MTV Teo remembers Batman Returns "There is only one true Batman movie, one Batmovie to rule them all." Amen.
Comics Alliance Marvel & Disney join other companies planning to boycott business with the state of Georgia if the governor doesn't veto the recently passed anti-gay law 
Vulture asks celebrities to pick Batman or Superman in a fight. Michael Shannon's, the former general Zod, answer is the greatest 
Film Freak Central amazing free associative depressive review of BvS by Walter Chaw 
Terry's Fabrics suggests you decorate your room w/ Batman or Superman accoutrements (to make sure you have nightmares about the movie lasting even longer?) 
Comics Alliance thinks Wonder Woman's MVP status in the new film is not enough to justify the treatment of the other female characters 
i09 you can explore Batman's lair using Google Street View.
YouTube LOL. Sad Affleck hearing about the Batman v Superman reviews
EW Warner Bros DC universe movies schedule through 2020 

Today's Watch
Batman v Terminator from Captain McKay. A fun little stop motion short using actual action figures. And it fits with Easter's ressurection theme, kinda, too.

ICYMI
The Oscars channel on YouTube added a ton of clips and speeches from last month's ceremony a couple of days ago 

Monday
Mar072016

Thoughts I Had While Staring at this Elvis & Nixon Poster

Manuel here. Maybe it’s the whole “grass is always greener” thing, but I’ve always loved the UK quad posters. That’s certainly the case with this one for the upcoming comedy/drama Elvis & Nixon. If the title hasn’t clued you in, the film is about the random one time meeting between the King and the President which led to one of the most famous photographs in American history. You may have seen the trailer for this Liza Johnson film and here are 5 thoughts had while staring at this playful poster...

1. Spacey as Nixon makes sense to me but that Shannon as Elvis is some left field casting, no? He does brooding and complex and crazy and worried aren't you curious about how he'll fare here. (Also, unplanned, but I just realized Shannon made TFE's latest banner up top!)

2. This 60s sketch comedy design seems much better tailored for the film than the more serious-minded US poster. (I mean, you don’t cast Johnny Knoxville if you’re going for straight drama.)

3. So much hand-acting in this poster! Then again, both outsized icons are known for their all too often parodied mannerisms. (Can this really move beyond an SNL skit?)

4. Nixon lends himself so easily to crazy comedy (Yes, I’m talking about Dick)

5. Who do you think Spacey called up first for tips on playing Nixon: John Cusack (Lee Daniels’ The Butler), Frank Langella (Frost/Nixon) or Anthony Hopkins (Nixon)? I hope he talked to Dan Aykroyd, actually

Elvis & Nixon opens in theaters on April 22nd, so you have until then to convince yourself that maybe the cheeky tone and bonkers casting means the film has a peculiar sense of humor worth indulging.