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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 nudity (65)

Tuesday
Jan262016

Best Acting, Male Division: Personal Ballots & Oscar Charts

In the war of scene-stealing antagonists this year, Oscar Isaac's Nathan (Ex Machina) > Tom Hardy's Fitzgerald (The Revenant). We love both actors here at TFE and loved them before the rest of the web did (brag brag) but when it comes down to awards season you have to make tough choices.

That's just a handy way of saying Oscar and I go our separate ways more often than not in the acting categories but now both lists are available for your (hopeful) entertainment... 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
On the subject of category placement antagonists are often tricky. They definitely move the plot -- neither The Revenant or Ex Machina can function without these devious men, but often you can see either argument for lead or supporting. While Ex Machina arguably has three leads being such a chamber drama I occasionally relax the soapbox for performances that straddle the divide. A recent rewatch of Ex Machina confirmed that Oscar Isaac would make whichever shortlist we put him in (and I'd switched him back and forth during the year in drafts). It's such an inventive approach to a thoroughly imagined character so I tossed the dice and supporting he went. Now watch him tear up this fucking dance floor...

Only one of Oscar's men makes my own personal ballot (just posted) with apologies to Mark Rylance who I thought would place but he fell in the dread sixth spot! It happens. I've completed the Oscar chart as well and included trivia for this golden sausage party. Speaking of sausage parties... I think this is the first male Oscar lineup ever in which ALL the men have gone full frontal in other movies. Weird, right? It's an exhibitionist group this year. This only occurred to me to check because I was a big fan of Intimacy (2001) back in the day which starred Mark Rylance and everyone knows that Sly starred in a porno before Rocky (1976)

The charts also include our "How'd they get nominated" fun. So here's a sample -- the Tom Hardy in The Revenant edition: 

25% Leo's bro power pulls his main men in w/ him
21% Spicy Bait: Villains prioritized in this category 
20% Timing. 'The Revenant' was the shiniest new toy
15% Everyone wishes they could have punched Iñárritu in the face
10% Performance - they like 'em BIG to shake up slow epics (see also: The Zeéeeee in 'Cold Mountain')
9% 'Mad Max Fury Rd'

P.S. I should not that though Hardy didn't make my top 12 in supporting I appreciate his go for broke attempts to save The Revenant from its own grandiose self-importance with a little cured ham.

Matt Damon a nominee at both the Oscars & the Film Bitch AwardsBEST LEADING ACTOR 
Given the weirdly unanimous "meh" factor that Oscar's shortlist has produced in audiences, at least on the web, it's hard to imagine it coming to be at all. But then you remember the media complicity in producing these sorts of safe groupings of all-stars whether or not people were actually hugely impressed with their work. Oscar produced a list of five major players who unfortunately could have been nominated based on the roles themselves before anyone saw the work (always a problem!). You've got your reigning Best Actor (Eddie Redmayne), your mega stars (Leonardo DiCaprio & Matt Damon), and your highly-revered thespians (Bryan Cranston & Michael Fassbender) with all but one of them (Damon) playing real life people. That's the baitiest of bait to awards types -- not just Oscar! --  though after 15 years of covering movies and awards seasons I still can't fathom why playing someone who really exists/existed is so much more likely to be lauded than creating a character from scratch with only the screenplay, director and your imagination to guide you. 

But anyway that's Oscar's list. Only two of them survive to make my personal ballot and I had to correct some category campaign problems too to put Jacob Tremblay (Room) and Paul Dano (Love & Mercy) where they belonged. Since DiCaprio's fans can be quite touchy I should note that he's solid, as ever, in The Revenant. He's locked up to win the Oscar finally but sadly the film just isn't asking very much of him, emotionally, beyond grief and anguish which he's been playing with minor variations for at a dozen years now. Sorry Oscar campaign narrative but tough physical working conditions and weird diets ≠ acting triumph. 

Wednesday
Dec232015

Best of '15: Hunkalicious Screen Beauty

Our Year in Review party continues! Cue mood music.

Since The Film Experience obsessives over actresses almost daily, the actors could use a little spotlight from time to time. So this entry into our year in review party is a beauty break starring the year's best man candy in cinema ...with a little TV thrown in for extra flavor.

15 A superhero... but which one?
Any of The Avengers will do but if actors are going to be expected to be on special diets and grueling workout routines daily for those spandex ready bodies, you'd think Marvel would let them go shirtless for more than 10 seconds each movie. Chris Evans is still the most delicious among them but we'll give this round to Paul Rudd for the sleeker non-steroidal fitness regimen (which we hope becomes more the norm because Henry Cavill's Superman body is so cartoon weird; it's like a giant chest and shoulders with random stick appendages and face).

Runner up goes to Chris Hemsworth When Wet: in that silly pool of visions in Age of Ultron; shipwrecked and starving but still somehow maintaining the workouts in In the Heart of the Sea; or even just those carefully wet stray Blackhat bangs

Fourteen more people or categories after the jump. But fair warning... it's slightly nsfw. So it's a good thing you're on Christmas break. In the immortal words of Tina Belcher...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Sep172015

TIFF: French Sexy Time Movies

Nathaniel, reporting from TIFF, where the French still love la petite mort. Due to the graphic nature of these films the reviews of Gaspar Noé's 3D explicit sex movie Love and the French teens-gone-wild Bang Gang: a modern love story (which is about exactly what it sounds like it's about) are both hidden after the jump where naughty things must go... Think of the children!

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Aug112015

Cast This: Patti Smith & Robert Mapplethorpe in "Just Kids"

Surprising news broke today that John Logan (Penny Dreadful) has successfully won a behind the scenes battle to adapt the best-selling memoir "Just Kids" as a limited series for Showtime. Why is the news surprising? Well, right here at The Film Experience, as you may recall, Patti Smith was horrified by the idea of this happening in our 2014 interview.

Our exchange went like this...

She appears to have had quite a change of heart as she was emphatic on this point when we spoke and she is still very much among the living!

So since she's changed her mind, it's time for CAST THIS!
Who should play these two iconic American artists in their twenty-something years for the miniseries? You'll need actors who can play raw emotion, uninhibited sexuality and bohemian charisma (For extra credit you can also cast playwright/actor/ex-partner of Jessica Lange Sam Shepard since he was also Patti's lover in the early 1970s and Sam Wagstaff who became Robert's older lover around the same time and his devoted mentor/patron/lover until his death.)

Both Smith and Mapplethorpe were poor 21 year-old transplants to NYC in 1967 (they were the exact same age) and lived together as roommates and lovers and later, he was homosexual after all, as devoted friends until 1974. Their fates were tied together and they both became famous, she as a musician with the release of her debut album "Horses" in 1975. His fame built more gradually as the fame of photographers and artists, tends to. 

Photos from the early 70s after the jump... (NSFW)

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Aug062015

Linkovers

must read
"Want to work in Hollywood? Only straight, white men need apply?" this new study from USC is getting a lot of attention and it is pretty damning evidence all told. (How did diversity issues get so much worse instead of better? - It boggles the mind.) That study is just for films but TV is doing a lot better. On that note it looks like we lost Lee Daniels to TV for good  (*sniffle... no more Paperboy or Precious). In addition to "Empire" Season 2 he's developing a girl-band series called "Star". NYT also looked at the diversity gap on the bigscreen from that study and Dana Delany tweeted in response underlining why she doesn't do film anymore.

The migration of actors (particularly female) and creatives to television has been well documented. I can only blame moviegoers at this point. They just only seem willing to look at "adult" and female stuff on television and save their ticket dollars for fx films 

links
Variety Todd Haynes to get a tribute at this year's Gotham Awards
Empire remember when Lasse Hallström was a big deal? His breakthrough was My Life as a Dog (not a literal title) and now he'll be directing a movie called A Dog's Purpose which is actually about a dog, a reincarnated dog who helps various owners in his lives
imgur a native of Florida photographs Edward Scissorhands locations 25 years later. The foilage sure grew and the colors sure are drabber now
Interview republishes an archival interview with Warren Beatty from 1972 as we await anything on his long-gestating Howard Hughes biopic
MSZ "Unloved" series looks at Peyton Reed's Down With Love and The Break-Up
Filmmaker Magazine talks to Randal Kleiser about Summer Lovers, an 80s guilty pleasure starring Daryl Hannah and Peter Gallagher.
Indie Outlook compares American Sniper and Selma to find the structure of "Oscar Bait". It's interesting but I wholly disagree on the notion that Selma's focus on the mechanicas of civil disobedience makes it dry and unsatisfying. I think that's exactly what makes it so good and so much more worthwhile than a simple "great man" biopic would have been. Love that movie.
This Is Not Porn Jessica Lange on the set of King Kong (1976). Hee 

spandex city
CW Seed This is actually cool. CW, which had a major hit with their fun and well-crafted Flash series is now streaming the original Flash television series from 1990 -  I had forgotten that existed even!
Comic Alliance "why I'm boycotting Marvel Comics" more on Marvel's very real diversity problem 
Htxt.Africa talks Star Wars and The Jungle Book from a Disney Africa presentation. Also says Doctor Strange looks "horror-movie-dark" 

for London readers
Facebook  Desperately Seeking Susan is getting a 30th anniversary screening at the Prince Charles Cinema 

the Leftovers

Oooh, here's the Season 2 trailer to HBO's "The Leftovers" which had so many good parts for ladies last season. This new season shakes things up a lot so we don't know quite what to expect. 

free the bacon
Kevin Bacon demands more male nudity in Hollywood

 

Friday
Jul032015

Review: Magic Mike XXL

This review was originally published in Nathaniel's column at Towleroad. It is reprinted here with in the Director's Cut version. i.e. it's longer this time...

 

When Magic Mike opened three years ago it was something of a risky proposition. Male stars exploiting their bodies for a young male star’s dream project loosely based on his own stripping career which he felt no shame about? Who would have guessed? Cut to three years later: Magic Mike and Friends (minus The Kid and Dallas “alright alright alright”) have returned to movie theaters with much teasing and blockbuster fanfare to a relatively new pop cultural context they helped create: male objectification is increasingly the norm. Just ask Chris Pratt, the ascendant superstar of the moment (Guardians of the Galaxy, Jurassic World) who has acknowledged that his new body was key to his ascendance and that he’s all for it… the objectification.

This wondrous new world of happily exposed man-flesh makes Magic Mike XXL feel curiously demure. Usually sequels go for more-more-more but XXL (the title is a misnomer) downsizes even as the stages get larger. There’s less plot since it’s essentially a road trip movie but most curiously there’s much less nudity even if the women this time around seem a lot more eager to see it.

This withholding is smart and funny at the beginning of the film in a sensational opening dance number starring Mike alone in his workroom. [More...]

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