DID YOU READ

The 10 least realistic cowboy movies of all time (with video)

The 10 least realistic cowboy movies of all time (with video) (photo)

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The American West was a strange, tragic and occasionally hilarious place, especially in the world of film. From “True Grit” and “Shane” to “Westworld” and “Blazing Saddles,” movies have thrown just about everything they can muster at cowboy-hatted icons like John Wayne and Yul Brynner.

2011’s “Cowboys and Aliens” is hardly the first movie to mix Western elements in with science fiction or ridiculous monsters. For almost as long as Hollywood has been making movies about lawlessness and bandits, filmmakers have been finding ways to make the West weird. So while we do tip our Stetsons to Mel Brooks, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen and every other innovator of the cowboy movie genre, these ten films burned new brands onto cowboy stories as an institution and truly set themselves apart as the most surreal buckaroo films ever made.

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10. “The Terror of Tiny Town” (1939)
Before “Oklahoma!” and “Cannibal! The Musical” set the struggles of the early American frontier to music, director Sam Newfield and a cast of little people imagined a world where tall folks didn’t exist and a town united in song to combat a shorter-than-average villain. It’s vintage post-Vaudeville Hollywood at its most entertaining, and nothing like it has been made since.


9. “Shanghai Noon” (2000)
Owen Wilson looked like he was trying to pull off an encore performance of his role from “Bottle Rocket” in this comedy directed by Tom Dey. The difference this time around was the presence of his co-star Jackie Chan. Pretty much any stunt that Chan pulls off on-screen looks surreal, but the least believable part of this movie is that Lucy Liu can’t save herself. That plot point alone places this movie in a parallel universe.


8. “Undead or Alive: A Zombedy” (2007)
If you spend money to see one zombie cowboy experience in your lifetime, buy the “Undead Nightmare” downloadable content for Rockstar Games’ “Red Dead Redemption.” If you have cash burning a hole in your pocket and absolutely must see Chris Kattan fight off zombie hordes in the old West, well, “Undead or Alive” is going to be your only choice. It should be noted that we have no sympathy for anyone who subjects themselves to this kind of torment.


7. “Cowboys and Aliens” (2011)
The most recent release on our list earned its place from its title and premise alone. Harrison Ford by himself should be enough to ward off a settler-kidnapping alien invasion (you’ve seen “Air Force One,” right?). But oh no. Director Jon Favreau gave Daniel Craig some high-powered energy weapon capable of shooting down alien ships. If aliens were smart enough to explore the cosmos and find other inhabited planets, they should at least know better than to challenge James Bond and Indiana Jones.


6. “Wild Wild West” (1999)
Trust us, “Wild Wild West” only gets more absurd if you ever hear Kevin Smith talk about the giant spider from the film that almost ended up in the Superman movie he nearly wrote. A lot of the zany machinery that appears is mechanical and steampunky, though, which why it got pushed into the lower five picks in this lineup. The music video it inspired, however, is the reason why we ranked it above “Cowboys and Aliens.”


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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.