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 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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Entries in Year in Review (155)

Monday
Aug312015

August. Is (Basically) A Wrap

Goodbye Summer 2015. We have a couple of post-mortems coming on the summer movie season and also the companion podcast to the 1954 smackdown... but those will essentially be epilogues to this hot month. And "hot" was literal rather than superlative. Aren't you glad summer is ending? Fall is often the best season, cinematically and weather-wise

Random Highlights ICYMT
HBO LGBT Manuel on memorable characters in The Wire, Carnivàle and Sopranos
Batgirl RIP Yvonne Craig (sniffle)
The Huston Family Acting Dynasty I mean... why not? 
Chicken Run (2000) for "Best Shot" fun
And the Honorary Oscar Goes to... Debbie, Gena and Spike! 
Junebug 10th anniversary 
"I Love Myself" Hailee Steinfeld and other Oscar nominated would be pop stars 
Viola Davis we celebrated her 50th and looked at upcoming projects. The triple crown is on its way 

List Mania
Sing Along greatest movie songs of the 1980s. Do you know them by heart?
24 Lily Tomlin Films - how many have u seen?
100 Things I Love About the Movies off the top of my head 
Jennifer Lawrence Happy 25th Jose celebrated with her best looks 
Highest Paid Actress via Forbes 

Reviewish (all formats): Ricki and the Flash (Nathaniel), Fantastic Four (Tim), The Man From UNCLE (Kyle), Woman in Gold (Nathaniel), Queen of Earth (Glenn), The Riot Club (David), Mr Robot & Humans S1 (Lynn & Nathaniel), Masters of Sex S3 (Deborah, Manuel, David, and Dan)

Finally... did you enjoy our Ingrid Bergman Centennial? We covered Intermezzo (1939), Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde (1941), For Whom the Bell Tolls (1942), Notorious, (1946), Joan of Arc (1948), Journey to Italy (1954), Indiscreet (1958), The Inn of Sixth Happiness (1958),Cactus Flower (1969), Murder on the Orient Express (1974) and her final movie Autumn Sonata (1978). For fun, and because she's arguably the definitive romantic heroine among movie stars, her ten best screen kisses. Thanks to Team Experience for doing this. You can read about our team here if you've ever been like "who is writing this wonderful piece that I'm reading?"

COMING IN SEPTEMBER: Nathaniel and Amir report from TIFF, Jose will be looking at festival fashions, and the Emmy Awards are nearly upon us, too. New movies will include Sleeping With Other PeopleEverest, Sicario, and The Intern. As for retrospectives, we'll look back at Postcards from the Edge and Goodfellas for their 25th birthdays and hit a few 1963 offerings in honor of the final Supporting Actress Smackdown of the year: it's Lilies of the Field versus Tom Jones versus VIP. Visit us daily, okay? xo

Saturday
Aug222015

What's the best scene from summer movie season?

Team Experience will be sharing highlights of their summer viewing in a week but until then, out of curiousity... What would you name the best single scene of the summer movie season? Here are a bakers dozen of candidates that thrilled yours truly...

• Chez Andie. Magic Mike XXL 
The Opera House. Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (and where the hell has this Rebecca Ferguson woman been all our lives?)
The Dream. Inside Out
• A Dangerous Dance. Tom at the Farm 
Furiosa vs. Max. Mad Max: Fury Road - That chained throwdown with Immortan Joe's harem as audience
Saving the Barn. Far From the Madding Crowd. Schoenaerts to the rescue!
Karaoke Night. I'll See You In My Dreams 
Birth of The Vision. Avengers: Age of Ultron. Damn but it's good to see Paul Bettany floating, mysterious, forehead bejewelled, and airbrushed red 
Laced Drink. The Man From U.N.C.L.E. Elizabeth Debicki is everything, in OR out of focus
Nested Flashback. Ant-Man. Starring Michael Peña 
Commercial on Loop. The D Train Jack Black's James Marsden obsession begins
Stepmom Stakes ClaimRicki and the Flash. It's always special and too rare to see an actress challenge Meryl Streep to a duel in a face off scene. Go Audra!
Visiting an Old Friend. Grandma. It's been a good summer for Sam Elliott. See also: I'll See You In My Dreams

I wanted to list something from A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence but since the whole thing is brilliant short vignettes, it would take up half the list.

Please do share your favorites! 

Friday
Jul312015

July. It's a Wrap

One more hot month before Prestige awards-hunting Season. Are you getting excited yet? If you have been away at the beach here are 12 highlights of the month for your reading pleasure.

Halfway Mark - Best of January through June 
Rhythm Hunger Nation - Katniss Everdeen does her best Janet Jackson 
Blurb Whore - Nathaniel's on a movie poster! 
Oldest Living Screen Stars - all 200 of them from de Havilland to Eastwood
Titus Andromedon and the "GBF" investigating the 'type' post Emmy noms
[Safe] & Sunset Boulevard - made for awesome "Best Shot" episodes  
Oscars vs. Blockbusters? - Not that simple  
Jake vs Jake - which kind of Gyllenhaal?  

"CAN SHE BEAT 'THE MRS TOM CRUISE' THING?" (hilarity in old headlines)Nicole Kidman's Breakout Year - part of our '95 retrospective
Omar Sharif (RIP) - we said goodbye twice: once for Hollywood, once for Egypt
The Revenant Buzz - are Oscar campaigns starting early or are they fending off "troubled" buzz? 

COMING THIS WEEKEND
The 1995 Smackdown this Sunday

COMING UP IN AUGUST
Ricki and The Flash, Grandma, Mistress America, Shaun the Sheep, Chicken Run, Angels in America, a small screen series, and more. Plus: Jennifer Lawrence turns 25. Viola Davis turns 50. And all month long we'll celebrate THE INGRID BERGMAN CENTENNIAL. P.S. Our year of the month will be 1954 so which movies would you love to read about? 

 

Friday
Jul102015

If I don't share this list now, "Mad Max Fury Road" won't be on it! 

A final "halfway mark" note. These are...

THE 10 BIGGEST 2015 MOVIES AT THE US BOX OFFICE (jan thru july 4th weekend)

chart via box office mojo

Imperator Furiosa by Cameron Stewart

I share this list only because I love Mad Max Fury Road so much and this is both the first moment (it just crawled over San Andreas) and the last in which it will be a 'top ten movie' for 2015... well, until critics top ten lists emerge but that's a different kind of List Olympics.

Minions, opening today, will surely kick it out of this box office giants chart in the next three days alone. Minions advertising is so oppressive that I imagine every child in the nation wants to see it and every parent has a migraine from hearing about it. (It wouldn't surprise me to hear that they spent as much on P&A as they stand to earn on opening weekend. The first film Despicable Me opened with $53 million and ended with $251 milliion. The second film Despicable Me 2 opened with $83 million and ended with $368 million. So who knows how high this one could go). Maybe it'll end up as the 3rd biggest grosser of 2015 when all is said and done since only Star Wars can will challenge Jurassic World's supremacy from the first half.

Are you like "shut up about 'they year is half over'?"
If your answer to that question is 'yes,' too bad. It is! It's been a decent year thus far in cinema but also a curiously shallow one in terms of mainstream films worth getting excited about. So many weekends have been bereft of interesting or exciting looking choice that it's kind of no wonder that Jurassic World was breaking box office records. It had no competition for like a whole month, aside from the surprise excellence of Inside Out.

Halfway There ~ Year in Review. Nine Parts
pt. 1 Oscar Acting Chart
pt. 2 10 Best Leading Performances
pt. 3 Animation from Strange Magic to Inside Out 
pt. 4 Ubiquitous Alicia Vikander 
pt. 5 Oscar Chart Updates - All Categories
pt. 6 Best Supporting Performances 
pt. 7 Top Ten List
pt. 8 Best Screen Animals  
pt. 9 Eye Candy 

Thursday
Jul092015

Halfway Finale: Eye Candy Highlights

½way mark - part 9 or 9
We conclude our celebration of the Best of 2015 (thus far) with a truly random list of visual highlights. Please to enjoy and do share which of these goodies you were sweetest on. Or propose alternate candy for us to suck on. Ready? Let's unwrap those candies before the next movie begins.

BEST LOOKING SPY
Jude Law in Spy. Prettier than James Bond. And Bond Girls. 

PRETTIEST NIGHTMARE
Mad Max Fury Road's scorched orange earth, colored smoke fares, white faced war boys, smokey eyes foreheads, and more. A visual feast. Just don't expect water with your meal.

AWESOMEST PROPS

Can we give a special Oscar to the props department on Mad Max Fury Road? Chastity belts w/ bolt cutters, detachable custom steering wheels, blood bags and iron masks, flame throwing guitars? Overachievement, thy name is Fury Road

BEST BLUE
Cinderella

BEST RED
Magic Mike XXL 

14 more honors after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jul082015

Halfway Menagerie: Ten Best Screen Animals 2015

½way mark - part 8 of 9 
Did you find yourself wishing that the Maloja Snake wasn't just the movement of the Clouds of Sils Maria but an actual snake? Did Channing Tatum still turn you on in dog-human hybrid form in Jupiter Ascending? Did you cringe when that cute double-headed mutant lizard met such an ignoble end in Mad Max Fury Road's first scene?

If you answered yes to any of those questions you might be an animal person and this list is for you!

TOP TEN ANIMALS FROM 2015 MOVIES
(THUS FAR)
Because Nathaniel R is a crazy cat lady

10 Paddington in Paddington
His fur may be too mangy (who needs photo realism?) but he sure is a polite amiable fellow and his movie is mostly a treat. 

 09 Cat Stevens in Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
I get that this movie is probably making fun of me Greg's dad's love for his cat, Cat Stevens, but I don't care because screen time for cats always improves movies. And this one needed the help. Injustice: the cat actor playing Cat Stevens is not credited.  

8 more furry friends after the jump... 

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jul072015

Halfway: Top Ten (Thus Far) and Best of Miscellania

½way mark - part 7 of 9
It's list time. [cue catchy as yet unwritten TFE jingle here]. We're nearly done with our "halfway mark - year in review" festivities so here is the top ten pictures and a few more Oscar-ish lists for good measure this fine Tuesday.

Top Ten (Thus Far)
in order of official release in 2015

-You know there are people in this world who go on first dates that are perfectly fine and then they wait awhile before they engage sexually.

-That's disgusting."

Appropriate Behavior (USA) d. Desiree Akhavan 
Jan 16th (Screened in January 2014)
Laugh out loud funny and encouragingly specific, it's a shame this Iranian American LGBT romantic comedy didn't break out bigger. It's available for full as a purchase/rental on YouTube.

Shhhh."

'71 (UK) d. Yann Demange.
Feb 27th (Screened in September 2014)
One of the scariest movies I've ever seen, full stop. Jack O'Connell wholly believable as a soldier abandoned in the projects during The Troubles, terrified for his life. 

Of Horses and Men (Iceland) d. Benedikt Erlingsson
Mar 11th (Screened in November 2013 - Iceland's 2013 Oscar Submission) 
It only took a year and half to make it to the States, but this extremely strange tragicomedy (?) about men and their horses is totally memorable. Somehow, despite expert direction and a unique fully formed sensibility, it's a debut feature?!?

7 more pictures after the jump...

Click to read more ...