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

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Viola's Speech

"If she'd said "We're a profession that celebrates what it means to live a life" instead of "the only profession" it would have been a truer, less self-aggrandizing statement. But what she said about exhuming stories from those who are dead - ordinary lives that should be illuminated on film - was powerful and is worth remembering" - Hustler

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Entries in moviegoing (93)

Friday
Feb032017

Podcast: Top Ten Lists

Nick and Nathaniel and Joe compare their top ten lists for the year -- only two movies are on all three lists.

Index (42 minutes)
00:01 Nick & Nathaniel talk Fire at Sea, The Lobster, Right Now Wrong Then, La La Land, allergies to directors and "delight" at the movies
14:00 Joe joins in for The Witch, Little MenIxcanul, and Francophonia  
23:00 Annette Bening's miracle performance and the bliss of watching 20th Century Women
28:30 More divisive films: The Handmaiden and American Honey
38:00 Things to Come and wrap-up

You can listen to the podcast here at the bottom of the post or download from iTunes. Continue the conversations in the comments, won't you? 

Our Top Ten Lists

Wednesday
Jan182017

AMC Best Picture Marathon

Have you ever attended AMC's Best Picture Showcase? They've been doing this "see all the Best Picture nominees back to back" event since, I think, around 2008? I seem to remember a particularly hilarious writeup of The Reader at that event somewhere out there on the web back in the day. (2008 is now back in the day? Eep!). With the expansion of the Best Picture lineup, the event is now split into a two day event in dozens of cities and a marathon viewing in following seven: Chicago, Dallas, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, DC . The screenings will be held on the two Saturdays preceding Hollywood's High Holy Night on Sunday February 26th. (I can't imagine that La La Land won't look even stronger in the middle of all that DDDRRRAAAMMMAAA just by virtue of being so different than the rest) 

Tickets go on sale on January 27th, three days after the Oscar nominations so at least you know what films you're signing up to see or see again if you choose to buy tickets.

Friday
Jan132017

Octavia Spencer is a Class Act

Octavia in Hidden Figures painting by Stella Blu

Octavia Spencer posted this painting above with the following message for screenings TONIGHT at the Rave in Baldwin Hills, Los Angeles

I've bought the 8 PM showing of Hidden Figures... if you know a family in need that would like to see our movie but can't afford it have them come. It's first come first served. My mom would not have been able to afford to take me and my siblings. So, I'm honoring her and all single parents this MLK weekend. Pass the word.

Very cool gesture from a very cool actress.

Wednesday
Dec212016

Instagram Fun with Baz, Elle, Orlando and More...

Would you rather...

See, everyone loves Star Wars! #flashback

A photo posted by Baz Luhrmann (@bazluhrmann) on Dec 16, 2016 at 3:05pm PST

...reminisce about the first time you saw Star Wars (1977) with Baz Lurhmann (can you believe how young he was here!)
...celebrate the 15th anniversary of Lord of the Rings with Orlando Bloom?
...go roller skating with Elle Fanning?
...visit Warsaw in the winter with Ewan McGregor? 
...or take your lunch from a RuPaul bag with Cheyenne Jackson?  

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Dec172016

What will you see this weekend?

It's the perfect weekend to catch up on movies! Will you...


... catch up w/ Globe nominees (ElleHacksaw Ridge? Miss Sloane?) that are losing theaters?
... join the teeming masses for Rogue One (just reviewed) in that galaxy far far away?
... rubberneck the Razzie contender Collateral Beauty
... hit Oscar player Fences or Pablo Larraín's terrific Neruda in NYC or LA?
... check out Manchester by the Sea (just podcasted) now that it's gone wide?
... or maybe you're seeing Jackie or Lion or La La Land

Share your plans in the comments. There's just so much to see out there! 

Tuesday
Dec132016

Happy "Annette Bening Is Awesome" Day

by Jason Adams

When was the first time you took note of Annette Bening? I had probably seen her play Dan Ackroyd's wife in the John Candy comedy The Great Outdoors in 1988 but it was the next couple of years after that made a movie star out of her, coming to a head when she coupled up with Mr. Beatty for Bugsy. That film was released in theaters on this very day in 1991, meaning she's more or less been "a name" for precisely 25 years to the day.

And coincidentally five years after that - to the day! - Tim Burton's film Mars Attacks! came out, in which Annette gave what was up until this year my favorite performance of hers. As the space-cadet Barbara Sand she's a comic riot, tapping into the sometimes flightniess of her voice - Bening's voice has always been her secret weapon, switching between high and low registers with ease; one second she's confused, the next she's deep-throated with determination.

I wish that 20th Century Women was coming out today not only because I would love to go see it a third (and a fourth, and a fifth) time right this minute, but because it'd be a swell coincidence, making December 13th a lucky charm for the actress. 20CW isn't out until Christmas Day. But we'll sing its praises anyway! Nathaniel ain't alone in adoring the movie - I cannot get enough of it, and The Bening's performance as Dorothea has already in my mind shoved all of her other work out of the way and taken the acting crown. May Oscar feel the same!

Monday
Nov212016

Tree of Life Revisited

This weekend a friend of mine invited me to join him for a screening at BAM of Terence Malick's The Tree of Life with a live orchestra. 'But that's only for silent films,' I thought. I said yes right away more to spend time with my friend than to see the film again which I had very much admired but not quite loved in 2011.

Seeing it again five years later proved unexpectedly rewarding. Perhaps it was the huge screen - the first time I'd seen it was on a tiny arthouse screen in Manhattan. Perhaps it was the live accompaniment of a huge orchestra and choir but it felt newly electric...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Nov112016

What are you seeing this weekend?

Just a reminder that three major titles open today

Elle
France's Oscar entry, directed by notorious provocateur Paul Verhoeven (Basic Instinct, Showgirls, Turkish Delight, Black Book, etcetera) features screen icon Isabelle Huppert in arguably the crowning role of her inimitable career as a video game designer chillingly obsessed with uncovering the identity of her rapist. Reviewed. Expect an Oscar nomination or (crossing fingers) two. Reviewed.
[Opens today in New York. Wednesday in Los Angeles]

Arrival
Denis Villeneuve's (Sicario, Enemy) awesome thinking person's sci-fi epic about a curiously immobile alien invasion. The aliens have arrived but what do they want hovering in 12 locations over our world? An expert linguist (Amy Adams, wonderful) is recruited to communicate with them in this superbly executed drama. Reviewed. It's also perfect for this moment for this movie.

 

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk
Ang Lee's technically experimental adaptation of the political novel is about a soldier on leave from war paraded for the nation as a war hero. Joe Alwyn (as Billy Lynn) is a compelling debut actor and the film has curio value from this normally great director but the high frame rate technique MUST die a quick death: it doesn't look like cinema at all but like a cheap poorly filmed stage production. More thoughts.
[Opens today in New York and Los Angeles] 

Also Opening:
Wide: Almost Christmas a comedy starring Danny Glover, the Naomi Watts led thriller Shut-In; Limited: a 20th anniversary restoration of the lesbian classic The Watermelon Woman (NY only), three documentaries (Seasons, National Bird, The Anthropologist), and the Oscilloscope curiosity The Love Witch. Here's that trailer:

LOVE WITCH TRAILER from Anna Biller on Vimeo.