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Entries in The Mummy (3)

Monday
Jun 12 2017

Box Office: My "Secretary"Diana and My Cousin Rachel

By Nathaniel R

Universal's attempted monster movie franchise launch didn't go so well.The Mummymet scathing reviews and a disappointing opening weekend.Now,a $32 million launch would be major news for many films but not for a $125 million budgeted feature starring Tom Cruise that is intending to launch a whole "universe".Not everything can be Marvel's Cinematic Universe,Hollywood!

In the absence of a strong competitor and on terrific word of mouth (no small thing),Wonder Womancontinued her reign at the box office.Given a relatively small second week drop (43% while DC's usual superhero sophomore frame drop is 67%) the Amazon princess is looking to join the $300 million club stateside which will put her right up there with Supes and Batman.DC's "Big Three"indeed.

Charts and further comments after the jump...

Click to read more ...亚博足彩app

Thursday
Dec 10 2015

Outstanding Achievement in Belated Linkage

It's so tough to keep up with other movie stuffs during precursor week.So here are several news items,essays,montages to help up catch us all up.Ready.Set.Go...

NEWS
i09One sorcerer supreme is not enough forDoctor Strangestar Benedict Cumberbatch.He's also signed on to playJasper Maskelyne,aNazi-fighterWar Magician
The WrapUniversal'sMummyreboot will swap the gender of the monster.Sofia Boutella (Kingsman: Secret Service) will star
Film StageGeorge Clooney's next directing job is the noirSuburbicon.He's lining up an all star cast and Julianne Moore just joined

PlaybillLee Daniels creating a girl band tv series for Queen Latifah (Empirewas such a succcess that there are  lot of music industry series about to hit or in development)
/FilmAng Lee'sThrilla in Manila,a boxing drama is said to be eyeing Ray Fisher as Muhammad Ali and David Oyelowo as Joe Frazier
Guardianlooks like it's Idris Elba vs Matthew McConaughey for the upcoming adaptation of Stephen King'sDark Tower

OF INTEREST
Film School Rejectshas a curious but interesting take on why people need to stop namingMad Max Fury Road"Best"of the year
Film School Rejectson theMission: Impossible - Rogue Nationcommentary track
Viv & Larryinterview with illustrator Alejandro Mogollo Diez who specialize in movie icons
MNPPRob Kazinsky's new tv show has been renamed...but will it help?People really aren't into the Frankenstein myth that much as evidenced at box office
Pajiba's review of Joy is getting a lot of traction for its skewering of David O.Russell as a mansplainer of feminism.I suppose I should write about this movie.It's not great but I don't think it's getting a fair shake
Comics AllianceFrank Miller is not into Netflix'sDaredevilchoices

LIST MANIA / AWARDAGE
Washington DC Film CriticsawardSpotlightbest pic but give multiple prizes toRoom,Mad Max: Fury Road,and The Revenant
African American Film Critics AssngiveStraight Outta ComptonPic,Ensemble,and Supporting Actor (Jason Mitchell - weirdly ignored by NAACP).Creedwins three prizes including Breakthrough for Michael B Jordan...um,he broke through years ago people!
Vulture&Slateboth do best TV shows of 2015:Jessica Jones,Mad Men,Jane the Virginetc
The New York Timesbest theater of 2015:Hamilton,The King and I,Lupita Nyong'o etc

TODAY'S VIEWS
If you haven't yet seen these give them a spin.It's David Ehrlich's Top 25 Films of the Year (his editing skills are absurd but so is having Tangerine way down at #24),Channing Tatum saying 8 Hateful things to a kitten "you know what sucks about you,dude.You don't have thumbs"You know what sucks about you,Chan.You're not in nearly enough ofThe Hateful Eightto make that 182 minu--- oops,embargo.

THE 25 BEST FILMS OF 2015: A VIDEO COUNTDOWNfromdavid EhrlichonVimeo.

Sunday
Jun 12 2011

Take Three: Boris Karloff

CraigfromDark Eye Sockethere withTake Three.Today:Boris Karloff

Take One:The Mummy(1931)

Always the consummate character actor,Karloff gave usthemost splendidly memorable characters.Famously one of the world's biggest and best horror icons (along with Lugosi,Chaney Jr.,Price and Lee,the frightful five),he played his beasts,ghouls and undead wanderers in exemplary fashion.Take his Imhotep/Ardath Bey,the titular bandaged one in director-cinematographerKarl Freund's 1931 classicThe Mummy.Ten years after being awakened by a group of foolhardy archaeologists Imhotep intends to revive his ancient Egyptian love Princess Ankh-es-en-amon with the help of reluctant modern-day babe Zita Johann.

Museum-based murder and an ancient parchment (the Scroll of Thoth!) cause all the the mummified mysticism.Karloff even has his own Pool of Fate (essentially a steamy bath/psychic porthole),into which he can see anyone and anything,anywhere;and via which he causes the remote heart failure of any old duffer who happens to get in his way.It's all in the seeing here,all about the Mummy's eyes.Karloff is given three intermittent extreme close-ups where he glowers into the camera,hypnotising us with his devilish ways.His eye sockets appear as black,lifeless voids into which his bright white pupils emerge through a trick of the light (director Freund was also a celebrated cinematographer).Imhotep is unnervingly memorable.

Take Two:Black Sabbath(1963)

Black Sabbath(AKAI Tre volti della pauraorThe Three Faces of Fear) was one of Karloff's key later roles – and a horror-fan favourite.This second segment,The Wurdalak,of Mario Bava's 1963 horror triptych* sees a Russian nobleman seeking shelter in a cottage run by a family awaiting the return of their father Gorca (Karloff).The family fears he may be the titular vampiric creature come back to damn them all to hell or condemn them to a life of blood-lusting misery,whichever comes first.With ashen face and oversized follicle accompaniments (his curly wig,moustache and eyebrows deserve their own end-titles credit),Karloff stands out.And I mean that literally,as well as performance-wise;the star is seen standing outside peering in on the action much of the time.Karloff is also lit by horror-versed cinematographer Ubaldo Terzano in a different,far more singular way than the other actors are.The giddy weight of his presence perhaps aroused nostalgic creativity in Bava.Karloff,so familiar from classic creature features,appears like an ornery flickering wraith from a beloved bygone era.

Bava,like Freund,makes effectively chilling use of Karloff's penetrating eyes.He knew that all it took to match Boris' unique ability to transfix an audience with great,creepy eye-work was the requisite camerawork to capture it.

*Karloff's performance is also notable for the fact that he appears as himself in the interludes,where he introduces the scary stories to follow.

Take Three:Frankenstein(1931)
andBride of Frankenstein(1935)

In James Whale's germinal horror filmFrankensteinKarloff is introduced to us simply as‘?'.He's a mystery,an enigma: a monster!He's a confused soul,a man made out of bits of other men,bad men.Karloff comes alive halfway through this epoch-defining original mutant anti-hero movie.He's first shown via a shot of his hands (as he similarly was inThe Mummyand,indeed,inBride of Frankenstein– it seems to be a recurring trope);he twitches his fingers then rises to meet a world of fear and epic paranoia. It was simply a way of being and walking: arms aloft,that angular,towering body – matched with the bolt-necked,flat-topped patchwork head,fronted by that memorably permanent crestfallen expression.Karloff delivers a beautiful performance,inventively clumsy and expertly physical.

In the first film he was quicker,more erratic.InBride– with nearly five years' worth of living with the Frankenstein legend surrounding him – Karloff appeared more at home,looser and familiar with the moaning and groaning through fields and ruins,but no less energetically committed.It's like he dusted off the monster's clothes four minutes,not four years,after first wearing them so well.As a result,one of Karloff's monstrous turns can't truly be judged higher than the other.They're a complementary couplet,both eminently watchable and always fascinating.ButBridereveals more about the man within the monster.It's evident in the three instances where he sheds a tear.You see that those tears are born of loneliness: he craves companionship.You can feel nothing but vicarious sorrow when the third of his tears works its way down his scarred,sunken cheek.

We belong dead.

...the monster forlornly admits in a last,generous close-up from James Whale.Boris Karloff made this famous monsterindeliblyhis own.

Three more films for the taking:The Black Cat(1934),The Body Snatcher(1945),The Sorcerers(1967)