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NYFF: “Go Go Tales.”

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"Ladies love a gentleman."
After seeing the press conference that followed "Go Go Tales," it’s a mystery to us how Abel Ferrara held it together to make a movie at all, much less one with a cast of dozens, filmed in Rome (standing in for New York) despite Ferrara’s apparent inability to communicate with much of the crew. But against all odds, "Go Go Tales" exists, as shaggily likable and verging on car-wreckish as the director himself. Like a stranger, more naked version of "A Prairie Home Companion," "Go Go Tales" chronicles the multi-floored goings on in Ray Ruby’s Paradise, a strip club on the verge of going out of business. Willem Dafoe is Ray, who presides over the club like it’s an extended beauty pageant, summoning the girls up to parade around as he sings and clearing the place out on Thursdays for cabaret night, wherein the girls show off the acts they hope will make them famous — magic, ballet, avant-garde mime — for talent agents that never show up. He’s working on a lottery scheme that will hopefully save the club from months of back rent and the clutches of its landlady Lilian Murray (Sylvia Miles), who’d like to turn the space over to a chain retail outlet. (Miles’ paint-peeling screech of "Bed Bath & Beyond!" is so distinctive that the song that plays over the closing credits repeatedly samples it.)

There’s also Matthew Modine, who shows up as Ray’s silent partner and brother, a dog-toting salon owner who’s instantly smitten with new girl Monroe. Played by Asia Argento, Monroe is introduced by the Paradise MC as "the scariest, sexiest girl in the world," and the former is more true than the latter — jerking around on stage in black pasties and smooching her dog, Argento is hypnotically watchable, for once in the perfect vehicle for her singular… charms, we guess. Bob Hoskins is there as a bellowing bouncer, as is rapper Pras in a hilarious role as the club’s put-upon chef (who only serves up microwaved organic hot dogs). The film, episodic and rambling, is consistently on the verge of dissolving into chaos, but sustains itself through sheer good will — while all of the characters complain, they’re also quite happy to be there, even Lilian, who plants herself at the bar for the duration and cheerily drinks for free. The overall experience of watching "Go Go Tales" is like spending a weekend with a disreputable, drunken uncle: You’re pretty happy to go home at the end, but you have a good time while you’re there.

"Go Go Tales" screens October 5 at midnight at the Walter Reade Theater and October 7 at 4:15pm at Frederick P. Rose Hall. It currently has no US distributor.

+ "Go Go Tales" (FilmLinc)
+ "Go Go Tales" (Bellatrix Media)


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.


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…


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.


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.