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DID YOU READ

Julia Roberts, Gary Coleman and a Monkey: Inside an Epic Collection of Forgotten Movie Posters

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By Michael Colton

Michael Colton writes for film (Penguins of Madagascar) and television (Childrens Hospital). He is also the owner and curator of the only $5 Movie Poster Collection in the known universe, which decorates his office in Los Angeles. (Click images to expand.)

On The Right Track, The Hazing

Orca, Broad Street

Walk into any producer’s office in L.A., and you’re likely to see a framed French lithograph of Casablanca, or the original one-sheet for The Godfather. Yawn.

Come to my office and you’re greeted with a beat-up poster for Robby Benson’s Die Laughing.

Die Laughing

I have not seen this film, nor have I ever met anyone who’s seen this film. Or even anyone who’s heard of this film. Or anyone who can explain why there’s a monkey. But that’s what you get for five dollars.

The Prize Fighter

I started collecting posters years ago when I lived in Washington, D.C., and a local movie theater went out of business. They gave away a bunch of posters from their storeroom, and I was drawn to the ones from the ’70s and ’80s, for movies with big stars and directors which are completely forgotten now.

Lucky Lady

I found more posters at flea markets, then discovered the troves on eBay and other sites. To stave off bankruptcy, I set myself an arbitrary cap of five dollars. Fortunately, that suits the kind of ignored movies that I like (i.e., posters that no one else wants). Like 1977’s The Chicken Chronicles, which carries the historic text, “introducing Steven Guttenberg.”

The Chicken Chronicles

Some of these I have a soft spot for because I actually saw them in the theater.

Blue City, Gotcha

Quicksilver, Vice VErsa

The only thing I remember about Earthbound is that my parents fucking hated it.

Earthbound

Satisfaction

This one I like because a young, pre-Pretty Woman Julia Roberts is in the photo, but she’s not named in the credits block. (For Liam Neeson it’s the other way around.) Also, Justine Bateman is gruesomely airbrushed.

Satisfaction closeup

This one, Playing For Keeps, is perhaps my favorite poster.

Playing for Keeps

Why? Oh, I don’t know…

Playing for Keeps closeup

Sometimes I organize the posters by genre. For instance, “Unlikely Creatures Playing Sports.”

MVP, Gus, Blue Skies Again

And a “Science Fiction” section: Krull (alien invaders), Spacehunter (hostile planet), Moment by Moment (Lily Tomlin and John Travolta are attracted to each other).

Krull, Spacehunter, Moment By Moment

CLICK HERE TO SEE PAGE 1.

This one appears to be a Cannonball Run knockoff starring Stockard Channing’s breasts.

Safari 3000

And according to the poster, it was made in 1932.

Safari 3000 closeup

Can I interest you in a western with Diane Lane and Amanda Plummer?

Cattle Annie and Little Britches

A scathing satire of our health-care industry starring the Fat Boys and Ralph Bellamy?

Disorderlies

A wacky Boy Scout comedy starring Louie Anderson, John Goodman and Richards Lewis and Belzer?

The Wrong Guys

Dyan Cannon’s sexy legs wrapped around a future murderer?

Coast to Coast

It’s too bad they never made the sequel, “ROTH.”

Rollover

Phoebe Cates. Panties. Cross-dressing. A perfect poster.

Private School

I fell asleep halfway through reading this one.

Four Friends

Two different titles. One inspirational journey.

Forever Young Forever Free, Lollipop

My introduction to Andy Kaufman.

Heartbeeps

Of all my posters, Albert Brooks’ breakthrough film is the only one that’s a genuinely great movie. Don’t know how I got this one so cheap.

Real Life

I keep buying these posters because there’s something comforting about them. Knowing that so many movies are utterly forgotten keeps me from getting too precious about my own writing. After all, nobody’s perfect.

Nobody's Perfekt

All photos courtesy of Michael Colton.

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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.

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Wicked Good

See More Evil

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is on Hulu.

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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:

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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.

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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!

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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.

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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.

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SO EXCITED!!!

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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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.”

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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. 

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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.

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