Sifting through the Holiday Sneaks…

Posted by on

"He was the top person I wanted to act with.&quot.The LA Times"Holiday Movie Sneaks" special section is so massive we decided we’d take the time to tell you what’s actually interesting in it. Worth reading:

Cinematic lightning in his grip: Kenneth Turan turns up some awesome details on the original "King Kong":

Though [producer-director Merian C.] Cooper had been dreaming of a giant-ape movie for years and even thought of pitting his ape against other species after reading W. Douglas Burden’s "Dragon Lizards of Komodo," others had put gorillas in movies before him. These included the 1932 jungle documentary "Congorilla" as well as the infamous and eventually banned 1931 exploitation film "Ingagi," a fake documentary described by Thomas Doherty in "Pre-Code Hollywood" as dealing with "the racially and sexually charged promise of a carnal union between African women and jungle apes."

Cultures in conflict: Don’t actually read the piece, but know that the only interesting thing to surface about Spielberg‘s "Munich" as of yet comes from Tom O’Neil over in "The Envelope": that the film is cutting it awfully close when it comes to being finished in time for award consideration.

Eastern lore, Western allure: Is anyone else dreading "Memoirs of a Geisha"? Worth reading if only for this report that, after millennia, people are still discovering parts of the body:

Sayuri, the lead character, wears a warm, golden kimono embroidered with maple leaves for a pivotal encounter with the great love of her life. The neckline dips gracefully away from the back of her neck, revealing a smooth, serene expanse of flesh between the shoulder blades, an underexposed area fashion designers may be inspired to highlight in future collections.

Children’s movies push the boundaries of PG: Rachel Abramowitz and Mary McNamara take on a story that’s been gathering steam on the news wires: has there been a "ratings creep" when it comes to children’s releases? "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" is the focus (Voldemort! WooooOOOOoooo!). Def worth a read, particularly for angles like this:

Others suggest that the intense new films are a reflection of the tough times in which we live and can provide a safe empowerment fantasy for children. Quoting "Narnia" author [CS] Lewis, the film’s producer, Mark Johnson, said: "Since it is likely they will meet cruel enemies, let them at least hear of brave knights and heroic courage; otherwise, you’re making their destiny not brighter but darker."

Watts’ ‘little’ holiday-season movie: "Ellie Parker" (which opens in NY this Friday) is a serendipitous blip, a film spun from a short director/writer Scott Coffey made with his friend when they were both struggling actors who met on the set of "Tank Girl." His friend: Naomi Watts. And suddenly you have a movie.

OK, now here’s the pitch…: Everybody loves "Snakes on a Plane."

The age of discovery: 15-year-old Q’Orianka Kilcher‘s love scenes with Colin Farrell in Terrence Malick‘s "The New World" reportedly almost gave the producers of the film a heart attack. We think that in their unfortunate photo she bears a slight resemblance to Jocelyne Wildenstein, but, you know, in a good way.

Determined to line up that role: Ginnifer Goodwin on her role in "Walk the Line":

"I’ll never tell Joaquin [Phoenix] this — and he won’t read this article, and that’s fine because he’s very humble — but he was the top person I wanted to act with. I have been a fan since [1986’s] ‘SpaceCamp.’"


New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

Posted by on

Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…


IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. 

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number! 

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time. 

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by. 


IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo. 

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim. 

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t? 

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?” 

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud. 

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.


The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

Posted by on
Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”


Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).



Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.


And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.


Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

Posted by on
GIFs via Giffy

In this crazy digital age, sometimes all we really want is to reach out and touch something. Maybe that’s why so many of us are still gung-ho about owning stuff on DVD. It’s tangible. It’s real. It’s tech from a bygone era that still feels relevant, yet also kitschy and retro. It’s basically vinyl for people born after 1990.


Inevitably we all have that friend whose love of the disc is so absolutely repellent that he makes the technology less appealing. “The resolution, man. The colors. You can’t get latitude like that on a download.” Go to hell, Tim.

Yes, Tim sucks, and you don’t want to be like Tim, but maybe he’s onto something and DVD is still the future. Here are some benefits that go beyond touch.

It’s Decor and Decorum

With DVDs and a handsome bookshelf you can show off your great taste in film and television without showing off your search history. Good for first dates, dinner parties, family reunions, etc.


Forget Public Wifi

Warm up that optical drive. No more awkwardly streaming episodes on shady free wifi!



Internet service goes down. It happens all the time. It could happen right now. Then what? Without a DVD on hand you’ll be forced to make eye contact with your friends and family. Or worse – conversation.


Self Defense

You can’t throw a download like a ninja star. Think about it.


If you’d like to experience the benefits DVD ownership yourself, Portlandia Season 7 is now available on DVD and Blue-Ray.