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DID YOU READ

Odds: Tuesday – Cinema Scope, Cahiers.

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"Smooth. That's how we do it."
New Cinema Scope! Editor Mark Peranson calls this issue "the annual ‘let’s throw things together ahead of schedule, cross our fingers, and pray we’re done in time’" one, and among the online goodies are Michael Sicinski‘s interview with Scott MacDonald, Robert Koehler on the "seven-disc-plus-booklet box set of the works of Norman McLaren produced by the National Film Board of Canada" and Christoph Huber on Vienna’s New Crowned Hope Festival.

While you’re at it, there are also two new translated offerings on the Cahiers Du Cinema site: Cyril Neyrat writes about "Miami Vice" and attempts to crown Michael Mann a sort of new Brian De Palma:

At first glance, Miami Vice would only confirm the most widespread critical opinion about Michael Mann as an artist of exceptional talent, whose stylistic virtuosity makes up for the lightness of his intentions, the intensity of the form having the tendency to mask the incoherence of the intrigue or the vagueness of the thought. But his last film belongs to those that would require two viewings. The first, to make a list of its disappointed expectations and weaknesses, and the second, to attend to what it does do: exploit the aesthetic possibilities of high definition and to draw all the consequences for the narrative. Then the weaknesses are changed into hypotheses, undoubtedly fragile but unfailingly innovative, of a new regime of the visible, generating a new kind of action film.

Also, Jean-Michel Frodon on two exhibitions: Agnès Varda‘s "L’Ile et Elle" and Jean-Luc Godard‘s "Voyage(s) in Utopia."

At the New York Times, Lawrence Levi reviews David Thomson’s "Nicole Kidman": "Ostensibly a critical biography, it comes off as a weird and unseemly mash note." At the London Times, more of Thomson‘s mashing — on Kidman‘s upcoming project "The Visiting": "I’m not sure how proven a director [Oliver] Hirschbiegel is, but I suspect he was a large attraction in this project for Kidman. (If you were doing that story, would you have Kidman as the valiant heroine or the ultimate alien, with her staring blue eyes and her luminous pale skin?) It’s hard to be sure how these films will turn out." And over at the Independent, Shane Danielsen conducts an argument with Thomson over the merits of his subject, musing "Ah, you’ve got it bad…"

And a few quick things: Via Empire, John Krasinski of the US "The Office" has written a script based on David Foster Wallace‘s "Brief Interviews With Hideous Men," and plans to shoot it in November. We love DFW, and we cannot begin to comprehend how someone would adapt any of his books or stories for the screen, particularly that one.

Parker Posey makes fun of Patrick Goldstein‘s Toronto wiener at the LA Times:

One day, having grabbed a steaming hot dog from a street vendor to tide me over till dinner, I got into an elevator, hoping to slip upstairs unnoticed, when suddenly a swarm of festival-goers crowded into the elevator, led by Parker Posey, who mercilessly mocked my choice of condiment, wondering why I had picked ketchup when there were now so many other tantalizing alternatives available.

Also at the LA Times, Lorenza Muñoz reports that Fox "plans to produce as many as a dozen films a year under a banner called FoxFaith. At least six of those films will be released in theaters under an agreement with two of the nation’s largest chains, AMC Theatres and Carmike Cinemas." Transparently cynical marketing ploy, or savvy courting of ignored market? We report, you decide (ploy).

And Saeed Taji Farouky at BBC News sends a dispatch from Cinema Days of Beirut:

The city’s only art-house cinema had its official opening on 11 July, the day before the Israeli bombardment of the city began.

Hania Mroue, festival director and Metropolis founder, began housing refugees in the cinema space and organised workshops and screenings to keep the city’s besieged residents distracted.

"People continued coming to the cinema the next day, even though war had started," she says. "They came. I don’t understand how and why they came even though Beirut was being bombed, but they came. And even the third day they kept coming."

+ Issue 28 (Cinema Scope)
+ Very High Definition (Cahiers Du Cinema)
+ Godard and Varda in Space (Cahiers Du Cinema)
+ Star Struck (NY Times)
+ Nicole at forty (London Times)
+ Nicole Kidman: a debate (Independent)
+ John Krasinski Finds Hideous Men (Empire)
+ Toronto scene: Stars and substance (LA Times)
+ New Fox Unit to Produce Christian Films (LA Times)
+ Beirut festival’s defiant gesture (BBC)

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Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

via GIPHY

Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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