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Entries in Oscars (90s) (137)

Wednesday
Mar232016

Bye Instant Watch: Sinatra, Flashdancers, and Spielberg's Worst

It's your last chance to watch the following multiple Oscar nominated titles for free on Netflix or Amazon Prime. There are more films leaving than these but you know The Film Experience isn't good copying and pasting press releases and calling it a day. It would make our lives SO much easier but it's just not how we do. This is for you Oscar completists -- you know who you are. As is our habit, we've freeze framed the titles at random and just shared whichever image came up.

Got any feelings about these pictures? Or will you by midnight on March 31st? Do you think they deserved their wins and/or nominations?

10 OSCAR TITLES LEAVING NETFLIX AT THE END OF THE MONTH
* indicates Oscar win in the category 

African violet. I can't tell you how difficult that was to come by.

Amistad (1997)
Oscar Nods: Supporting (Anthony Hopkins), Cinematography, Costumes, Score.
Shameful Confession: I've never seen this. I think it's my most significant gap in 1990s Oscar viewing. 

9 more after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Mar102016

Reader's Choice: a look back at Gattaca (1997)

Welcome to the new bi-weekly series "Reader's Choice." For the first episode I gave you a choice of several films currently streaming and you picked Gattaca (on Amazon Prime). I hope you enjoy and comment since we haven't talked about this movie ever, that I can recall. - Nathaniel

Memories of Gattaca are fuzzy at best. I saw it only once in theaters 19 years ago. I remember: Jude Law in a wheelchair; sterile, sleek, and awesome production design; Uma Thurman being an icy receptionist?; Ethan Hawke being less of a perfect specimen than Jude Law in the context of the movie (this remains true out of context); a hard to buy premise about violence being bred out of the human race?; something about brothers swimming? That's it. 

Join me in this revisit...

A fascinating juxtaposition: When the costume design credit arrives we're looking at a naked body

Gattaca begins with a beautiful blue credits sequence which becomes eerier as it goes along once you realize what its macro imagery is telling you. Ethan Hawke is ridding himself of all human detritus: dead flesh, body hair, cuticles, until he's smooth as a statue. He repeats this in several ways though sometimes (at work) the detritus isn't his. All the workers at his job get their fingers pricked upon entering like its a diabetic research center. There are even daily urine tests... which seems extreme for a world that's so into cleanliness. What if someone misses the specimen cup? 

At the pee test the doctor (Xander Berkeley) looks right at his penis and says the following. [more...]

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Feb252016

Bad Movies on Oscar Weekend

This weekend's release of Gods of Egypt got me thinking about the fact that we never get great movies opening on Oscar weekend. Studios must be betting that those of us watching the show are too busy prepping movie-themed party snacks to sneak in something special at the movies. Instead, they usually cater to an audience who'll likely be avoiding the big show. Hardly a new standard for release schedules, this weekend has been a dumping ground for forgettable cinema for some time.

Like the notorious poor quality of early months of the year, this weekend rarely gifts us with cult classics or enduring pleasures either. You have to go back 1997's Oscar weekend to find releases that still have vocal fans: TNT staple Selena (remember good Jennifer Lopez?) and Liar Liar (remember good Jim Carrey?). The previous year had David O. Russell's underappreciated sophmore film Flirting with Disaster, which did get some precursor love.

However, for something timeless and Oscar recognized, this weekend's biggest standout in modern memory is Pretty Woman. Julia Roberts performance as What Do You Want It To Be Vivian wasn't the most recent Oscar nominee debuting the weekend of the ceremony.

Let's see how far back we have to go to get an Oscar nominated film released on Oscar weekend!*

*full disclosure: I cheated, but you will totally agree why after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Feb182016

Happy Birthday to the Oldest Living 'Best Supporting Actor' 

10 DAY UNTIL OSCAR! Random Oscar Trivia This Morning...

Today is the 91st birthday of George Kennedy. In addition to getting to spend a lot of shirtless sweaty hours with Paul Newman (mmm) in Cool Hand Luke, he's the oldest living Best Supporting Actor winner. But who, you ask, are the others? (Just humor me and ask okay?)

Okay, okay. I'll tell you!

The Five Oldest Living Best Supporting Actor Oscar Winners
after the jump... 

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Feb102016

Silence of the Lambs Pt 3: Quid Pro Quo

image via FangoriaTeam Experience is revisiting 1991's Best Picture, Silence of the Lambs for its 25th anniversary.

In Pt 1 We met Clarice and Hannibal and heard about the horrifying Buffalo Bill case.
In Pt 2 The FBI's investigation picked up steam with the discovery of another victim and The Death's Head Moth. Finally, we met Buffalo Bill and his latest victim Catherine, now "the girl in the pit." When we left her she was a disembodied voice shouting for help. Why won't you answer me please?

Answers are coming but not without a price. 

Pt 3 by Nathaniel R

00:49:50 A smartly judged sharp cut takes us from the dark abyss of Bill's pit to the brightly lit FBI training facility. It's like blinking from too much sun when you leave a movie theater in the middle of the day. Though Silence of the Lambs deals with gruesomely complex psychology its binaries of good and evil are the lifeline for mass appeal I think. (Craig McKay was nominated for Best Film Editing, losing to JFK's collage and barrage of characters and information)

The students. Demme never gets any credit for his multi-ethnic casting but he was doing it long before people were hating on Hollywood for *not* doing it.

00:51:34 A news broadcast about Buffalo Bill at the training center attracts a large group of students. Turns out the Girl in the Pit is actually a US Senator's daughter so there's yet more pressure to get this case solved. Ardelia whispers to Clarice that it's so smart what the Senator is doing, repeating Catherine's name so often; get her would be killer to see her as human and maybe he'll show mercy.

00:51:35 Another jarring cut and we're back at the asylum. Chilton has had it with Clarice's secrecy. Jodie Foster's performance is so sharp in this movie. You can see our heroine getting bolder and more confident each time she steps out; her body language is more confrontational, too. [More after the jump...]

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Feb022016

Q&A Part 1: Leo's World. 

Dear Readers, Last week I asked for more reader questions but since three of them at least were about Leonardo DiCaprio let's get them all out of the way as an appetizer to the main Q&A post. Ready... here we go.

LADY EDITH: Now that you have experienced the "Jonas blizzard" so recently how do you feel about giving "The Revenant" Oscars? [More]

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jan282016

Bye Instant Watch: Terms of Endearment, Tom Cruise, Big Fish...

What's leaving Netflix Instant Watch?

We should probably start covering that. It seems like a boring topic but we jazz up your public service announcements. I'll close my eyes and play with the control bar and wherever I freeze the movie I'll share the image. This weekend is your last chance to watch these films for free for who knows how long. Since there are Oscar titles in the mix, perhaps you can fill some holes in your Oscar lists of Things To See or Rewatch.

Ready? In chronological order of their film year, seven films leaving Netflix on February 1st...

TERMS OF ENDEARMENT (1983)

EMMA: I've got some good news. I'm unofficially pregnant. I mean I haven't got the tests back but I'm never late.

AURORA: [Pause] Well... No, I don't understand."

Look how crazy young Jeff Daniels is! Shirley Maclaine is so hilarious and complicated in this movie -- that long pause with cascading rejection of possible responses under frozen 'I don't understand' face. She's going to lose out since she doesn't want to think of herself as a grandmother. A well deserved Best Actress win, with Shirley obviously relieved about it "this show has been as long as my career."

Oscar Note: I know we've asked this before but how long before we get another girlie Best Picture winner it's been FOR-EV-ER. Terms of Endearment was nominated for 11 Oscars (an astounding amount for a contemporary-set film), winning 5. 

six more movies after the jump

THE TERMINATOR (1984) 

Click to read more ...