DID YOU READ

Wicked Stepfathers, Law Breaking Citizens and Wild Things

Wicked Stepfathers, Law Breaking Citizens and Wild Things (photo)

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This week in theaters finds some late-to-the-party summertime silliness lining up alongside a couple of titles arriving three weeks early for Halloween. Elsewhere the arthouse scene provides a strong showing with Chilean maids, Filipino mothers and some good ol’ New York psychos.

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“Adela”
The only person who’s worked harder in the Filipino film industry over the past three years than director Adolfo Alix Jr., who’s made 11 features since 2006, is his leading lady Anita Linda, who has made 13 in the same time and plays the title role in this minimalist mood piece as stand-in for an entire nation’s embittered resilience. Captured in a series of long takes, the film follows our eponymous heroine on a mostly silent odyssey, casually aiding neighbors and strangers alike as she wistfully celebrates her 80th birthday in the shantytown where she lives. In Tagalog with subtitles.
Opens in New York.

“All The Best: Fun Begins…”
So bold, bright and colorful you’ll swear it’s really a detergent commercial, this manically energetic farce of mistaken identity is the latest from Bollywood helmer Rohit Shetty, son of legendary fight composer Late Shetty. Sanjay Dutt stars as Dharma Kapoor, a suave millionaire whose baby bro Veer (Fardeen Khan) lives off him and constantly disappoints as an aspiring singer until Dharma comes to believe that Veer has married a smoking hottie who is, in fact, the wife of Veer’s best friend (Ajay Devgan). In Hindi with subtitles.
Opens in limited release.

“Black Dynamite”
Two decades have passed since the Wayans’ “I’m Gonna Git You Sucka” last delivered a few nudges to the ribs of the blaxploitation genre, so it’s high time that renowned martial artist Michael Jai White took his shots with this loving spoof that sees the star armed with big guns and bigger hair. White continues to make inroads behind the camera by co-writing the script (with Byron Minns and director Scott Sanders) about a former CIA agent who returns to the hood following the murder of his brother to do battle with — who else? — The Man.
Opens in limited release.

“Creating Karma”
With the rancid taste of the unmitigated comedy disaster that was “The Love Guru” still fresh in viewer’s mouths, it’s a brave person (or in this case, two) that would bring campy sitar players and kooky New Age therapy back to the big screen so soon. A directorial bow for musician and composer Jill Wisoff, this quirky comedy finds a well-to-do fashion magazine editor (co-writer Carol Lee Sirugo) undergoing a radical transformation into a poet when she moves in with her hippie half-sister (Wisoff).
Opens in Los Angeles.

“Food Beware: The French Organic Revolution”
The original title of this French documentary — “Nos Enfants Nous Accuseront,” which translates to “Our Children Will Accuse Us” — is a more telling label of what documentarian Jean-Paul Jaud delivers in this damning assessment of our addiction to processed foods. Jaud travels to village of Barjac to make the case for organic food, showing how damaging the use of pesticides have been to the locals and pointing the finger squarely at Generation X’ers for raising a crop of children that, for the first time in modern history, will grow up to be less healthy than their parents.
Opens in New York.

“Law Abiding Citizen”
After checking out the trailer for this one, we’re honestly not sure which seems more absurd: the sprawling, Machiavellian plot driving this thriller, or the idea that we’re asked to buy that Gerard Butler is the man pulling the strings. But hey, aim high and you might hit the middle, right? Offering himself up in his third high-concept flick in as many months, Butler flexes his cerebral muscles as a condemned man orchestrating a campaign of violence from behind bars against the U.S. attorney (Jamie Foxx), who wrote up the plea bargain to release the murderers of his wife and child, and all others who helped secure their release. “The Italian Job” helmer F. Gary Gray directs.
Opens wide.

“The Little Traitor”
A longstanding advocate of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestine conflict, Israeli author and journalist Amos Oz wrote the novel (“A Panther in the Basement”) providing the inspiration for Lynn Roth’s sophomore feature, set in the months leading up to the birth of the state of Israel in 1947. Ido Port fills out the role of Proffy, an 11-year-old boy whose pie-in-the-sky plans to blow-up Buckingham Palace with his buddies dissipates when he develops a friendship with a kindly British sergeant (Alfred Molina) during the British-Zionist conflict that places him at odds with his family and friends.
Opens in New York.

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

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

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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…

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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.

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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-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

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

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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?”

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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).

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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.

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

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Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

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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.

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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.

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Forget Public Wifi

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

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Inter-not

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.

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Self Defense

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

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