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The Painless Way to See “127 Hours,” and More New DVDs

The Painless Way to See “127 Hours,” and More New DVDs (photo)

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A look at what’s new on DVD today:

“127 Hours” (2010)
Directed by Danny Boyle
Released by Fox Home Entertainment

With a fast-forward button at the ready on home devices, it’s high time more people see James Franco’s Spirit Award-winning performance as real-life adventurer Aron Ralston, who gets his arm trapped under a boulder in Utah’s Bluejohn Canyon and struggles to survive and free himself in Danny Boyle’s life-affirming followup to “Slumdog Millionaire.” (Matt Singer’s interview with James Franco and Danny Boyle is here.)

“420 High Desert Way” (2011)
Directed by Tom Breedlove
Released by Maverick Entertainment Group

Dealing with a different drug than the one suggested by the title, this procedural drama follows a young undercover cop who must refine his extreme sports skills as he infiltrates a drug cartel and must bust them before they learn his true identity.

“Bambi” (1942)
Directed by James Algar and Samuel Armstrong
Released by Walt Disney Home Entertainment

The animated classic comes to Blu-ray for the first time, illuminating every fiber on the whitetail deer’s head on his way to becoming prince of the forest. The new package includes deleted scenes, a six-part making-of documentary, a picture-in-picture special feature detailing the development of the film and more.

“A Beautiful Life” (2010)
Directed by Alejandro Chomski
Released by Image Entertainment

Bai Ling, Dana Delany and Debi Mazar are part of the supporting cast in Alejandro Chomski’s drama that revolves around an illegal immigrant and a runaway girl whose desperation leads them to become lovers and drug dealers.

“The Bleeding” (2009)
Directed by Charlie Picerni
Released by Anchor Bay Entertainment

Not a “Twilight” fan? This thriller starring Vinnie Jones and Kat Von D as vampires may be the cure as DMX, Michael Madsen and Armand Assante team up to slay them.

“Burlesque” (2010)
Directed by Steven Antin
Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

It got bludgeoned upon its release in theaters, but cult status begins now for the directorial debut of Steven Antin, brother to Pussycat Dolls creator Robin, that stars Christina Aguilera as a country girl who makes her way to Hollywood to become a star, if only she can get on stage at Cher’s burlesque club that is under threat of being foreclosed upon. Stanley Tucci, Cam Gigandet and Kristen Bell co-star.

02282011_CableGuy.jpg“The Cable Guy” (1997)
Directed by Ben Stiller
Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Long known as the film Jim Carrey got $20 million for, the 15th anniversary of the dark comedy about a man (Matthew Broderick) who sees his life ruined by an obsessed satellite installer, which is only being released on Blu-ray, aims to restore its reputation with director Ben Stiller, producer Judd Apatow and Carrey providing a no-holds-barred audio commentary for the occasion, as well as deleted scenes, rehearsal footage and more.

“Cannes Man” (1997)
Directed by Richard Martini
Released by Cinema Libre Studio

Plenty of famous faces dot Richard Martini’s 1996 comedy about the film festival on the Croisette and Sy Lerner (Seymour Cassel) plays the wheeling and dealing producer who just tries to get noticed along with an aspiring screenwriter.

“The Clowns” (1970)
Directed by Federico Fellini
Released by RaroVideo

Having been a badge of honor on the shelves of DVD collectors who don’t let international borders prevent them from ordering rarities from around the world, RaroVideo is finally coming to America and their first release is one of the only Fellini films never to see a DVD release on our shores, the 1970 comedy in which he stars as the ringleader of a circus. In addition to the film, the DVD includes a 40-page booklet of rare Fellini sketches, a video essay and a rare Fellini short.

“Dr. Black & Mr. Hyde” (1976)
Directed by William Crain
Released by VCI Entertainment

Celebrating its 35th anniversary, this blaxploitation horror film is a takeoff of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic story with Bernie Casey as the scientist whose experiment goes horribly awry and faces an alter ego that he cannot control.

“Faster” (2010)
Directed by George Tillman, Jr.
Released by CBS Films

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is out for revenge as a recent parolee whose main objective is to take out those responsible for his brother’s death while being trailed by two cops (Carla Gugino and Billy Bob Thornton) and a hitman (Oliver Jackson-Cohen) in this thriller from “Notorious” director George Tillman, Jr.

02282011_GlennGouldGeniusWithin.jpg“Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould” (2010)
Directed by Michele Hozer and Peter Raymont
Released by Lorber Films

The enigmatic Canadian pianist has inspired plenty of films about his work, but Hozer and Raymont present all sorts of never-before-seen footage and recordings of Gould for this documentary that examines the contrast between his public persona and private life, as well as shares interviews with collaborators, friends and obsessions (pop icon Petula Clark gets some camera time).

“Infinite Justice” (2006)
Directed by Jamil Dehlavi
Released by Platinum Disc

This drama revolves around an American reporter (Kevin Collins) who is taken hostage by Muslim extremists in protest of those held captive at Guantanamo Bay.

“Love & Other Drugs” (2010)
Directed by Edward Zwick
Released by Fox Home Entertainment

A break from the big-budget historical epics “The Last Samurai” director Edward Zwick’s known for in his film work, Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal star in this romantic dramedy about a pharmaceutical rep (Gyllenhaal) whose career is on the rise with the introduction of Viagra, but whose personal life takes a hit when he falls for a Parkinson’s sufferer (Hathaway).

“Mado” (1976)
Directed by Claude Sautet
Released by Pathfinder Home Entertainment

Michel Piccoli stars as a businessman struggling to save his company when his partner leaves him in a sea of debt after committing suicide and turning to a prostitute (Octavia Piccolo) for comfort as a rival attempts a hostile takeover in this drama from Claude Sautet.

“My Girlfriend’s Back” (2010)
Directed by Steven Ayromlooi
Released by Lionsgate

“Felicity” star Tangi Miller and Malik Yoba cross paths, but try to overcome poor timing in this romantic comedy from Steven Ayromlooi.

02282011_MyGirlfriendsBoyfriend.jpg“My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend” (2010)
Directed by Daryn Tufts
Released by Good Times Home Video

After being unlucky in love, Alyssa Milano suddenly finds herself caught between two very different men (Christopher Gorham and Michael Landes) in this romantic comedy. Beau Bridges and Carol Kane co-star.

“S.W.A.T. Firefight” (2011)
Directed by Benny Boom
Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

This DTV sequel to the Colin Farrell-Samuel L. Jackson redo of the TV show brings together former Terminators Robert Patrick and Kristanna Loken in this cop thriller about an LAPD lieutenant (Gabriel Macht) who is reassigned to Detroit where he faces off once again with corruption at the station.

“Satin” (2011)
Directed by Christopher Olness
Released by Monarch Home Video

Melissa Joan Hart and Robert Guillaume come to the aid of a down-on-his-luck Vegas crooner (Hamilton von Watts) who finds himself stuck in the tiny burg of Lost Springs when his car stalls out in this dramedy.

[Additional photos: “The Cable Guy,” TriStar Pictures, 1997; “Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould,” Lorber Films, 2010; “My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend,” fiftyfilms, 2010]



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.


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…


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.

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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?”


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.