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Odds: Wednesday – Nigel Kneale, angry Baldwin.

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"Nobody ever wins a cold war."
Screenwriter Nigel Kneale, best know for creating and writing the Quatermass films, died at the age of 84.  "The Quatermass Xperiment" made us weep in terror when we saw it on TV at an impressionable age (as did, embarrassingly, "Pinocchio"). "Nobody ever wins a cold war." Via BBC News.

According to The Australian, the European Centre for Antiziganism Research (a human rights group campaigning for gypsies) has filed a slander complaint in Germany against Sacha Baron Cohen:

Twentieth Century Fox, the film’s distributor in Germany, pulled television commercials and internet advertising that featured tongue-in-cheek talks of running over "gypsies" with a Hummer military vehicle after complaints by the group.

Not to sound cynical, but how serendipitously well-timed!

Via Borys Kit at the Hollywood Reporter, Larry and Andy Wachowski will indeed write and direct a live-action "Speed Racer":

"They are approaching these racing scenes in a way you’ve never seen before," said Silver, adding that the brothers are designing the movie’s look as they write. Silver also said that unlike the more adult-oriented material of the Wachowskis’ past — "Vendetta," the "Matrix" movies and "Bound" were all rated R — "Speed" will be family-friendly.

According to Empire, directors Bong Joon-Ho (of "The Host") and Park Chan-Wook (of "Oldboy" and the like) will be working together on a film — Park will produce "La Transperceneige," which Bong is set to direct:

It’s adapted from a French graphic novel by Jacques Lob and Jean-Marc Rochette, which chronicles the world of a train that serves as the last refuge for a depleted human race. As it dashes from an impending ice age, the carriages represent a microcosm of human society within their different classes.

The film is apparently going to be in English. And, speaking of, Bruce Wallace at the LA Times has an interview with Bong, in town for AFI Fest. This is the most ridiculous line ever:

Korean critics loved the mix of frights and humor. But the film will land in the United States at a highly charged moment, when most Americans absorbing news of the nuclear crisis from the Korean peninsula expect to see North Koreans, not themselves, cast as the bad guy.

Argh! But Bong is gracious:

"The movie makes many comments on the U.S. presence in Korea, but I think U.S. audiences will actually enjoy it," he said. "After all, my movie is just entertainment, fun. It’s about a monster. And the political message is very soft, especially compared to your own movies like ‘Fahrenheit 9/11.’ Americans who have seen that will not be shocked at my movie."

Also at the LA Times, Rachel Abramowitz previews the rest of the fest, which kicks off today.

Over at the Huffington Post, Alec Baldwin explains why he ankled his role as narrator of "Running with Arnold," a doc about the political ascension of Arnold Schwarzenegger:

I am certainly not a supporter of Arnold Schwarzenegger. I think he was unqualified for his current job when he ran in the bogus recall election. I believe he is unqualified for that job today. As dull as Phil Angelides‘ campaign has been, I believe that he would better represent the interests of more Californians than Schwarzenegger could ever hope to. Schwarzenegger is not a leader. Like Bush, he is a front man for a group of powerful interests and he is reading from a script. The filmmakers hammer Schwarzenegger over his private behavior and his record as governor. But Schwarzenegger deserves to be treated fairly and the film’s images of Nazi rallies were over the line.

At the Guardian‘s Film Blog, Ryan Gilbey writes about the possibilities of the ex-director’s cut, a la Richard Donner‘s take on "Superman II" and Paul Schrader‘s "Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist."

And over at Wired, Steve Silberman gives Darren Aronofsky the generous feature profile:

Like Burstyn‘s skittering hallucinations in Requiem, The Fountain‘s most haunting images linger in the mind long after the credits roll. When Tomas reaches toward the tree of life, golden filaments bristle and rise to meet his fingers. At the film’s climax, Tom and his bubble are blown through galactic clouds and pillars of dark matter that look like nothing else in science fiction. By bucking the conventions of CGI and using an ingenious application of microphotography to simulate space, Aronofsky has given the scenes in the nebula a handwrought quality that evokes the luminous etchings of William Blake.

+ Quatermass creator dies, aged 84 (BBC)
+ Borat accused of slander (The Australian)
+ Wachowskis fuel ‘Speed Racer’ (HR)
+ The Host And Oldboy Directors Team Up (Empire)
+ Who’s the monster? (LA Times)
+ It’s in L.A., but all the world is this fest’s stage (LA Times)
+ True Lies: Filmmakers Go Too Far in Attack Against Schwarzenegger (Huffington Post)
+ The ex-director’s cut (Guardian Film Blog)
+ The Outsider (Wired)


Hacked In

Funny or Die Is Taking Over

FOD TV comes to IFC every Saturday night.

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We’ve been fans of Funny or Die since we first met The Landlord. That enduring love makes it more than logical, then, that IFC is totally cool with FOD hijacking the airwaves every Saturday night. Yes, that’s happening.

The appropriately titled FOD TV looks like something pulled from public access television in the nineties. Like lo-fi broken-antenna reception and warped VHS tapes. Equal parts WTF and UHF.

Get ready for characters including The Shirtless Painter, Long-Haired Businessmen, and Pigeon Man. They’re aptly named, but for a better sense of what’s in store, here’s a taste of ASMR with Kelly Whispers:

Watch FOD TV every Saturday night during IFC’s regularly scheduled movies.


Wicked Good

See More Evil

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is on Hulu.

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GIFs via Giphy

Okay, so you missed the entire first season of Stan Against Evil. There’s no shame in that, per se. But here’s the thing: Season 2 is just around the corner and you don’t want to lag behind. After all, Season 1 had some critical character development, not to mention countless plot twists, and a breathless finale cliffhanger that’s been begging for resolution since last fall. It also had this:


The good news is that you can catch up right now on Hulu. Phew. But if you aren’t streaming yet, here’s a basic primer…

Willards Mill Is Evil

Stan spent his whole career as sheriff oblivious to the fact that his town has a nasty curse. Mostly because his recently-deceased wife was secretly killing demons and keeping Stan alive.

Demons Really Want To Kill Stan

The curse on Willards Mill stipulates that damned souls must hunt and kill each and every town sheriff, or “constable.” Oh, and these demons are shockingly creative.


They Also Want To Kill Evie

Why? Because Evie’s a sheriff too, and the curse on Willard’s Mill doesn’t have a “one at a time” clause. Bummer, Evie.

Stan and Evie Must Work Together

Beating the curse will take two, baby, but that’s easier said than done because Stan doesn’t always seem to give a damn. Damn!


Beware of Goats

It goes without saying for anyone who’s seen the show: If you know that ancient evil wants to kill you, be wary of anything that has cloven feet.


Season 2 Is Lurking

Scary new things are slouching towards Willards Mill. An impending darkness descending on Stan, Evie and their cohort – eviler evil, more demony demons, and whatnot. And if Stan wants to survive, he’ll have to get even Stanlier.

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is now streaming right now on Hulu.



Reminders that the ’90s were a thing

"The Place We Live" is available for a Jessie Spano-level binge on Comedy Crib.

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GIFs via Giphy

Unless you stopped paying attention to the world at large in 1989, you are of course aware that the ’90s are having their pop cultural second coming. Nobody is more acutely aware of this than Dara Katz and Betsy Kenney, two comedians who met doing improv comedy and have just made their Comedy Crib debut with the hilarious ’90s TV throwback series, The Place We Live.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Dara: It’s everything you loved–or loved to hate—from Melrose Place and 90210 but condensed to five minutes, funny (on purpose) and totally absurd.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Betsy: “Hey Todd, why don’t you have a sip of water. Also, I think you’ll love The Place We Live because everyone has issues…just like you, Todd.”


IFC: When you were living through the ’90s, did you think it was television’s golden age or the pop culture apocalypse?

Betsy: I wasn’t sure I knew what it was, I just knew I loved it!

Dara: Same. Was just happy that my parents let me watch. But looking back, the ’90s honored The Teen. And for that, it’s the golden age of pop culture. 

IFC: Which ’90s shows did you mine for the series, and why?

Betsy: Melrose and 90210 for the most part. If you watch an episode of either of those shows you’ll see they’re a comedic gold mine. In one single episode, they cover serious crimes, drug problems, sex and working in a law firm and/or gallery, all while being young, hot and skinny.

Dara: And almost any series we were watching in the ’90s, Full House, Saved By the Bell, My So Called Life has very similar themes, archetypes and really stupid-intense drama. We took from a lot of places. 


IFC: How would you describe each of the show’s characters in terms of their ’90s TV stereotype?

Dara: Autumn (Sunita Mani) is the femme fatale. Robin (Dara Katz) is the book worm (because she wears glasses). Candace (Betsy Kenney) is Corey’s twin and gives great advice and has really great hair. Corey (Casey Jost) is the boy next door/popular guy. Candace and Corey’s parents decided to live in a car so the gang can live in their house. 
Lee (Jonathan Braylock) is the jock.

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Dara: Because everyone’s feeling major ’90s nostalgia right now, and this is that, on steroids while also being a totally new, silly thing.

Delight in the whole season of The Place We Live right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. It’ll take you back in all the right ways.