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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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an honorary for David Lynch 

"All Lynch [movies] are sacred to me. I still remember going to the theater not long after I first moved to Los Angeles to see this, wondering who this unknown actress was in the lead, and coming out dazed and amazed.- Jordan

"I agree that the overused term 'masterpiece' can be applied properly to this film. It's amazing. Such a sweet balance between compassion and horror, between Hollywood dreams and Hollywood nightmares, between serious fun and serious tragedy. It is a major achievement." -Edward

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Entries in Toy Story 4 (6)


32 films competing for nominations in Best Animated Feature

by Nathaniel R

Frozen 2 is clearly hoping to be the first animated franchise to win the Animated Feature category twice.

The Oscar race is officially on for Best Animated Feature. 32 films are planning to compete, which is easily a record as there are usually closer to 22 or so, so we'll definitely have 5 nominees again this year. But the question is which. We've divvied the 32 films up into types to make this easier to process...

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Review Catch-Up

by Nathaniel R

A confession: After an alarm mishap I accidentally slept right through my Lion King critics screening earlier in the week. Upon waking I was angry with myself because there is no way I wanted to actually pay to see photorealistic animals singing. After perusing the early reviews both pro and con, I became convinced that the sleep was no accident but a divine intervention from the cinematic gods. My new stance is that I can wait for the screener to arrive during awards season... as no movie has ever struck me (from afar) as less necessary than this one. In truth I don't even love the 1994 picture (as Disney renaissance movies go, it's low on my personal list). Anyway, on to movies we have caught up with recently that we either haven't reviewed or talked at length about on the podcast...

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Halfway Mark - Team Experience Favourites

I'll be sharing my midyear ballots (such as they are) over the next couple of days but first let's hear from the whole team. Or, some of them - those that volunteeered their little in progress top fives. The team hopes you enjoy these little peeks into our individual film experiences from January through June at the movies (and in some cases, at home).

Chris Feil's midyear top five  
Twitter | Instagram | This Had Oscar Buzz | TFE Articles 

01 Her Smell's redemptive anarchy in five acts

02 Ari Aster's hilarious Midsommar -time sadness

03 Claire Denis' sci-fi descent into the black hole of our biology High Life.

04 The haves-and-have-nots horror of Us.

05 Zhao Tao giving another masterclass in Jia Zhangke's Ash is Purest White.  


Paolo Kagaoan's midyear top five
Twitter | Instagram | All of Paolo's articles

01 Homecoming: A Film By Beyonce... When  Beyonce descended from those steps, Sergei Eisenstein rose back from the dead, burned every copy of Battleship Potemkin, and killed himself.

02 Elizabeth Olsen in Endgame because she reminded me that Thanos is an asshole... 

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Podcast: Last Black Man in San Francisco, Toy Story 4

by Murtada Elfadl and Nathaniel R


Index (49 minutes)
00:01 Toy Story 4. Fun but was that necessary?
06:57 Emma Thompson shines in Late Night. Deserves a bigger audience.
20:10 Sienna Miller's character study American Woman 
32:00 We highly recommend the stylized, moving The Last Black Man in San Francisco.
47:11 The 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? 

Late Night and Last Black Man in San Francisco


What did you see this weekend?

Weekend Box Office Estimates
🔺 = New or Expanding / ★ = Highly Recommended
Toy Story 4 Last Black Man in San Francisco
1 🔺 Toy Story 4  $120.9 *NEW* on 4575 screens 
1🔺 The Dead Don't Die $1.1 (cum. $4.7) on 690 screens REVIEW
2 🔺 Child's Play $14 *NEW* on 3007 screens REVIEW
2 🔺  Pavarotti $431k (cum. $1) on 135 screens 
3  Aladdin  $13.2 (cum. $288.5) on 3435 screens REVIEW1992 RETROSPECTIVE
3 🔺 The Last Black Man in San Francisco $410k (cum. $1.3) on 72 screens REVIEW 
4 Men in Black International  $10.7 (cum. $52.6) on 4224 screens REVIEW
4 🔺  Echo in the Canyon $225k (cum. 1.1) on 81 screens  
Secret Life of Pets 2 $10.2 (cum. $117.5) on 3804 screens REVIEW 
5  Biggest Little Farm $164k (cum. $3.2) on 134 screens 
Rocketman $5.6 (cum. $77.2) on 2414 screens  REVIEW  
6 🔺 Wild Rose $52k *NEW* on 4 screens 


What did you see this week? 

True to the overstated but possibly real 'franchise fatigue' of summer 2019, Toy Story 4 opened lower than both studio and analyst's expectations though $118 million is still a hefty opening tally, and the third best of the year (Disney has the top four openings all to themselves). Meanwhile Child's Play also fell short of expectations continuing the trend. If only some original film would break out we could view it as people being tired of sequels and franchises, but it's probably not that as they're not seeking out anything new instead. Speaking of franchise fatigue, Godzilla: King of Monsters managed to inch over the $100 million mark this weekend. But with a budget of $170 million (not including P&A) that's still rough waters for the iconic kaiju to swim in.

In platform releases, The Last Black Man in San Francisco and the music docs Echo in the Canyon and Pavarotti continued to do well all three crossing the $1 million mark this weekend. 

• The new titles not listed above included Anna, earning $3.6 million its opening weekend, the documentaries Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am, A Bigger Splash (a rerelease of the art doc classic) and The Quiet One earning $48k, $18k, and $10k respectively.


April Foolish Predictions #1: Animated Feature

[drumroll] It's Time! Our annual April Foolish Oscar Predictions have begun.

Please bear in mind that, though the predictions may actually seem foolish and will surely be out of date within a few weeks (if not sooner as more concrete news about the film year emerges), we are actually pretty good at this. Before each category we'll tell you what we generally score this far in advance. And if you think it seems low, that just proves to us that you haven't actually written down your predictions during the first week of april, not changed them with every scrap of news you heard, and then checked that hard copy nearly a year later to see how well it held up!

First up is Best Animated Feature where our traditional prediction score this early is 3/5. But 2019 might well hold more suprises than usual...

Click to read more ...