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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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What did YOU see this weekend?

 

Elle. Basically the same movie as The Piano Teacher but sillier. Huppert is great, but when is she not? -Jonathan

The Edge of Seventeen because I needed something light and fun. So delightful, and anchored by a wonderful Hailee Steinfeld performance. - Marina

 

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Entries in The Film Experience (159)

Wednesday
Oct192016

NYFF 2016 Wrap-Up. So Many Fine Films!

That's a wrap on the New York Film Festival which hosted the world premieres of 20th Century Women, The 13th, and Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk. But in festival season there's never any downtime. I'm off to Middleburg, Virginia tomorrow to try out a new festival. This one is just a weekend long fest with beautiful scenery -a baby Northeastern Telluride I suppose? LionLoving, La La Land, and Land of Mine (Denmark's Oscar submission) as well as some movies that don't begin with the letter "l" are screening. 

But meanwhile back in New York City, our hometown festival wrapped this Sunday. Here are all the reviews in case you missed any. Thanks again to Jason, Manuel, Bill, and Murtada for bringing this festival to you!

Manchester by the Sea, 20th Century Women, and Aquarius

28 Reviews
13th (Ava DuVernay's documentary on mass incarceration) - Glenn
20th Century Women (Mike Mills '70s beauty with Annette Bening) - Nathaniel
Abacus (documentary from Steve James of Hoop Dreams fame) - Jason
Aquarius (Brazil's starring Sonia Braga) - Manuel
The B-Side: Elsa Dornan's Portrait Photography (documentary) - Manuel
Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk (Ang Lee's experimental 3D/4K film) - Nathaniel
Brillo Box (3 ¢ off) (documentary on the 60s art world) - Jason
Certain Women (Kelly Reichardt's 3 act) - Jason
Everything Else (Starring Oscar-nominated Adriana Barraza)  -Manuel
Graduation (from the director of 4 Months 3 Weeks and 2 Days) - Bill
Hermia & Helena (Directed by Matías Piñeiro) - Bill
I, Daniel Blake (this year's Palme D'or Champ) - Jason
Jackie (Pablo Larraín directs Natalie Portman as Jackie Kennedy) - Nathaniel
Julieta (Almodóvar's latest, Spain's Oscar submission) - Manuel
The Lost City of Z (an old fashioned epic from James Gray) - Jason
Manchester by the Sea (Kenneth Lonergan's Oscar hopeful) - Jason
Moonlight (the life of a gay black man) - Murtada/Manuel/Nathaniel
My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea (animated / experimental) - Manuel
Neruda (Pablo Larrain's movie about the poet on the run) - Nathaniel
The Ornithologist (a surreal queer Portuguese journey)  - Nathaniel
Paterson (Directed by Jim Jarmusch starring Adam Driver) - Jason
Personal Shopper (Olivier Assayas & Kristen Stewart reunion) -Jason
Staying Vertical (from the director of Stranger by the Lake) - Jason
Things To Come (starring Isabelle Huppert) - Jason
Toni Erdmann (Germany's comic Oscar submission) - Jason
Uncle Howard (a documentary about a filmmaker who died of AIDS) - Jason
The Unknown Girl (from Belgium's Dardenne brothers) - Manuel
Yourself and Yours (Hong SangSoo's ambiguous romantic drama) - Manuel

and

Q&As (Adam Driver, Naomie Harris, and Kenneth Lonergan) - Murtada
Q&As (Mike Mills on Annette Bening) - Murtada
Q&As (Pablo Larraín and Natalie Portman) - Murtada
Michelle Williams in Manchester (Her Oscar Moment?) - Murtada 

Friday
Sep302016

September. It's a Wrap

While the world continued to be horrifying this past month was a partial joy thanks to TIFF ushering in prestige film season, our favorite time of year, and a particularly good one from the looks of it. Here are a baker's dozen highlights from the month at the blog in case you missed these...

7 Favorites
Isabelle Huppert is Elle -the French icon slays in this tricky movie
Blue Velvet - 30 memorable things on its 30th anniversary 
Memories of The Blair Witch Project - Team Experience looks back
The Red Turtle & Courgette - animation is not a genre 
I Could Go On Singing (1963) - Judy Garland's final film 
The Furniture: Love & Friendship - the country charm of the hit comedy
Moulin Rouge! the musical numbers we're most eager to see reinvisioned for the stage musical version 

7 That Spurred the Most Conversation
Fences & 20th Century Women -they're finally teasing us 
Oscar Chart Updates -these always spur plentiful conversation
Tom Hanks in Sully - what does he have to do to nab another Oscar nom?
Amy Adams Times Two - Oscar's girlfriend in Arrival & Nocturnal Animals
The Black Dahlia (2006) - looking back at this curiousity 10 years later
Natalie Portman in Jackie - Fox Searchlight plans a December bow
Emmy Afterglow - what was your favorite win... other than Sarah Paulson?

7 Things Coming in October
• More from NYFF including 20th Century Women & Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk
• A Marie Antoinette theme party
• 1963 Supporting Actress Smackdown: Tom Jones, Lilies of the Field, and The VIPs
• Fall TV: Crisis in Six Scenes, Divorce, Westworld, Crazy Ex Girlfriend
• New Films: Birth of a Nation, Moonlight, The Handmaiden
• The return of "Oscar Horrors"  
• ...and a new series on Costume Design 

Sunday
Sep182016

TIFF 2016: Winners & Review Index

TIFF just ended crowning La La Land with the coveted People's Choice Award (runners up: Lion & Queen of Katwe) and Jackie with their new juried prize. We haven't totally closed up shop - we've left the door ajar because there are a few articles left to come. It takes time processing all of this art that's rushing over us! Films give us so many feelings! The Toronto International Film Festival is my personal favorite film festival in the world:  easy to attend, friendly, well organized, less prohibitively expensive than other festivals. I saw and enjoyed 27 movies and would have seen a few more but for getting sick in the rain and rush. But the festival experience is such that even mediocre or bad movies can be remembered with positive associations.

Here are all the reviews and articles (thus far) in one place in case you missed any or would like a handy index.

my ten favorites from TIFF '16 (in no particular order)

Reviews from TIFF 16
The Apprentice - Singapore's Oscar submission
Arrival - Denis Villeneuve's gripping superbly crafted sci-fi journey
The Bad Batch - Ana Lily Armipour's cannibal wasteland satire
Blind Sun - Visual paranoia in Greece
Catfight - Anne Heche vs. Sandra Oh three times
Colossal - Anne Hathaway is a Kaiju in this cult oddity
The Commune -Thomas Vinterberg's wonderful 70s drama
Death in Sarajevo -Bosnia's politically fired up Oscar submission
A Decent Woman - Argentinian whatsit about a nudist maid
Elle - Paul Verhoeven & Isabelle Huppert serve up twisted cerebral comedy
Frantz - François Ozon's black & white drama of grief & guilt

Handsome Devil - coming of age at a rugby-mad boarding school
A Monster Calls - a visual fantasy about a young boy losing his mother
My Life as a Courgette - Switzerland's animated/foreign Oscar submission
Nocturnal Animals - Tom Ford's lurid meta movie
• Pyromaniac - a Norwegian thriller
(re) Assignment - Walter Hill's ill advised gender surgery noir
The Red Turtle - a mute magical beauty, sure to be Oscar-nominated
Sand Storm - an Israeli drama about female oppression and marriage
Santa & Andres -a Cuban political drama about LGBT oppression
Strange Weather - Holly Hunter returns!
The Wedding Ring - a Nigerian romantic fable 

Non Review Articles
A Cocktail with Sigourney - tall, beautiful, funny
Michael Fassbender Tribute - He has some regrets 
Moonlight's Oscar buzz - a note of caution 
Jackie Bought by Searchlight - watch out Oscar race 
• Hidden Figures Brunch Pt 1 - Glen Powell 

Still to Come
There are a few more articles coming, as stated and Oscar charts will be updated shortly to reflect all this new knowledge. We'll also have plenty of chances to discuss Moonlight, The HandmaidenLa La Land, and Jackie, (opening in that order October through December) since they'll all be up for either Oscars or our own prizes at TFE. I didn't review them properly (yet) because it's always hardest to write about films you love. You want to do them justice and festival schedules are rushed. But know this for now: they are all excellent and it's going to be an amazing Fall Film Season if any of the as yet unseen titles like Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk or Fences or Silence (if that even opens) deliver on this level, too. That's got to be reassuring after that truly terrible movie summer we all endured. I purposefully skipped Toronto titles that will also be playing at New York Film Festival (which begins September 30th) or are opening during it but soon we discuss these films, too: Julieta, Aquarius, Birth of a Nation, Neruda, Queen of Katwe, Magnificent Seven, Manchester by the Sea, Certain Women, My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea, Sieranevada, The Ornithologist, Toni Erdmann, Edge of Seventeen and Personal Shopper

Monday
Aug292016

August. It's Nearly a Wrap

The eighth month of the year is -- we've reached the final third of 2016 already? That was quick. Fall film season here we come. Summer was dreadful for movies unless you were smart and caught platform releases like Little Men, The Fits, Captain Fantastic, Morris From America, Disorder instead of the big budget spectacles. In fact, 2016 is shaping up to be a very rough year for mainstream cinema which could make the Oscars disastrous if they don't get creative and look further afield than they're usually prone to. We shall see.

This past month we've been celebrating 1984 for the Smackdown (coming your way Wednesday) but here are some other highlights in case you missed any.

8 Favorites
The Art of Disavowing Your Film No, Jared Leto, no. 
The Lobster's Phony Flowers another great episode of The Furniture
Beauty vs Beast Bridesmaids Wiig or Byrne. Tough choice, right?
That time Oscar loved Tarzan Revisiting the grand Greystoke
Judy by the Numbers Judgement at Nuremberg -a different kind of singing
Florence Foster Jenkins off-tune fuss & fun 
• Q&A Gender and the Oscars Plus Streep
Sausage Party buns, dogs, filth, and stereotypes

8 That Spurred the Most Conversation
Cast This: Clue Yes, they're making another movie from the game
1984, Year of the Heroic Farm Wives Sissy & Jessica & Sally
Posterized: Woody Allen How many have you seen?
Posterized: Natalie Portman How many of her films have you seen?
Best Films of the 21st Century? That BBC List
Monty (RIP) The Film Experience's beloved cat pundit has passed away
198 Oscar Performaces Ranking the Nominees (2000-2009) 
• 120 Oscar Performances Ranking the Nominees (2010-2015)

Coming in September
• Festival Season! Nathaniel leaves for Toronto real soon
• Emmy Awards
• 1963 is Our "Year of the Month": Tom Jones, The Sword in the Stone, Lilies of the Field, I Could Go On Singing, and more...
• BluRay: A Bigger Splash, The Conjuring 2, and Civil War revisits coming your way
• New Releases: Bridget Jones's Baby, Sully, Miss Peregrine, The Queen of Katwe, The Dressmaker, Magnificent Seven, and many more

ANY REQUESTS?

Sunday
Aug212016

"Best Shot" Finale

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Apologies that last week's episode was  delayed one week but real life got in the way. So this Tuesday I'll be discussing Baz Luhrmann's The Get Down and Splash will serve as our season (series?) finale of Hit Me With Your Best Shot next week. It'll also double as the wrap up of our Year of the Month (1984) just after the Smackdown.

And then it's on to fall film season, festivals, and Oscar build-up! 

This Tuesday Evening, August 23rd
THE GET DOWN (2016) 

Pick one shot from the first episode of Baz Luhrmann's Netflix series described as "a mythic saga of how New York at the brink of bankruptcy gave birth to hip-hop, punk and disco"... though from more intricate descriptions it sounds like it's mostly hip-hop we're talking about.  Can he bring that Moulin Rouge! magic? Was it worth the insane investment with a budget of $10 million per episode? (The first half of the first season -- six of twelve episodes -- began streaming on August 12th) 

SEASON FINALE  - Tuesday Evening, August 30th
SPLASH (1984)
With 1984 being our "year of the month" and a rumored gender flipped remake coming, we'll look back at the best live-action mermaid movie that I was obsessed with as a kid. Daryl Hannah's Crimped Hair forever!