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Jurassic Park III

Dino Might

The 10 Best Movie Dinosaurs

Catch a Jurassic Park movie marathon Sunday, Jan. 31st starting at 6P on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Universal/courtesy Everett Collection

“God creates dinosaurs, God kills dinosaurs, God creates man, man kills God, man brings back dinosaurs.” Those are the words of Michael Crichton, from his blockbuster 1990 novel Jurassic Park, and they would prove to be spot-on. From the dawn of movies, filmmakers have been obsessed with bringing dinosaurs back from the dead, whether with wire and clay or computer pixels. Before you catch IFC’s Jurassic Park movie marathon, check out this list of the best big screen dinos that’s 65 million years in the making.


10. Indominus Rex, Jurassic World

Legendary Pictures

Legendary Pictures

Much like the movie itself, which picked over the bones of past Jurassic Park films to create something new, Indominus Rex was something of a Frankenstein monster, combining elements of everything from Tyrannosauruses and Velociraptors to Tree Frogs and Viper Snakes. What resulted was the first genetically modified dinosaur in the franchise’s history, a hybrid that was intended to be the most kick-ass creature we’d ever seen. While “Indominus Got Next” couldn’t make us forget the thrills the franchise had once delivered, it did help Jurassic World become the third highest grossing movie ever…well, until a dinosaur of ’70s cinema called Star Wars reared its head once again.


9. King Koopa, Super Mario Bros.

Buena Vista Pictures

Buena Vista Pictures

Nintendo was still new to the movie world when they signed away the film rights to their video game hit Super Mario Bros., leading to a dystopian nightmare of a movie that owed more to Blade Runner than Donkey Kong. The push and pull between dark, adult fair and cartoon nonsense is right there on the screen, right down to a truly bizarre performance from Dennis Hopper. (As if there’s any other kind.) Playing King Koopa, a T.rex descendant who rules over an alternate dimension called Dinohattan with an iron fist, the actor goes full Hopper here, helping turn this crap-tastic movie into a camp classic.


8. Dimetrodon, Journey to the Center of the Earth

20th Century Fox

20th Century Fox

While the 2008 remake may have had bigger thrills (and a hunk-splosion in the form of Brendan Fraser), the 1959 original Journey to the Center of the Earth takes the cake for one reason: iguanas playing dinosaurs. (Iguanas! With weird appliances glued onto their backs!) Between actor Clifton Webb falling ill and having to be replaced, and Arlene Dahl passing out after screaming for her life during a difficult stunt, this movie seems like it was a bit of a disaster. But nothing can beat the awe-inspiring sight of a pet shop lizard with a green fin glued onto its spine.


7. Allosaurus, The Lost World

First National Pictures

First National Pictures

This 1925 silent adventure film, based on the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle story, was the first movie about dinosaurs ever made. Full of effects and thrills that were unheard of at the time, it paved the way for classics such as King Kong, which wouldn’t be made for another eight years. While Brute Force, made in 1914, was the first movie to feature a dinosaur, this was the first movie to have them be the driving part of the story, and do battle with each other. And if we have to pick just one favorite, we’ll go with the feisty Allosaurus who seems to pick fights with any dinosaur it comes across.


6. Grimlock, Transformers: Age of Extinction

Paramount Pictures

Paramount Pictures

Moving up the list, it was inevitable that we’d find our way to robot dinosaurs. That’s just common sense. While the dignified dinos above could all kick some serious ass, none could transform into a 40-foot tall centurion, complete with an Energon sword used to create maximum carnage. Sure, the Transformer film franchise might not be great art, but this is a robot dinosaur people! It can shoot fire out of its mouth! It would be irresponsible to rank it any lower than 6th on this list.


5. T. Rex, Caveman

United Artists

United Artists

When the T. Rex in this 1981 Ringo Starr camp classic ate a magical fruit that worked just like cannabis, he became ravenous. Hey, we’ve all been there. That led to the inevitable question: if you were seriously stoned, which member of The Beatles would you eat? While the movie has been much derided over the years, how many dinosaurs can claim to have hung with one of the Fab Four?


4. Dino, The Flintstones

Universal Pictures

Universal Pictures

Arguably the most famous dinosaur in the history of pop culture, this CGI version of The Flintstone’s dino-pooch did a decent job of capturing the original Hanna-Barbera magic. For anyone who’s ever had a beloved pet, they can relate to the special relationship Dino shares with his family. Sure, he may be single-handedly responsible for the glut of misinformation that’s out there about human and dinosaur cohabitation. But who could resist those slobbery kisses when coming home from a long day at the Slate Rock and Gravel Company?


3. Littlefoot, The Land Before Time

Universal Pictures

Universal Pictures

Poor Loveable Littlefoot, a young Brontosaurus who lost his mother, and had to rely on his friends to help him make it to the “Great Valley” before all of the dinosaurs went extinct. A heartbreaking children’s movie from the minds of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, this animated classic was Bambi for kids of the ’80s. We grew up with Littlefoot, who would go on to front 13 different movies and a TV series. Sure, not all were classics, but we’ll always remember Littefoot’s mother telling him, and all of us, “let your heart guide you. It whispers so listen closely.”


2. T. Rex, King Kong

RKO Radio Pictures

RKO Radio Pictures

If you’re talking movie star dinosaurs, few are more famous than this Tyrannosaurus Rex, who turned a butt whooping at the hands of King Kong into one of the most famous scenes in movie history. This is a movie that’s been remade twice, and placed on the National Film Registry, which means that there’s a good chance aliens will be watching these two behemoths doing battle long after we’re all extinct.


1. TIE: T. Rex and Velociraptors, Jurassic Park

Universal Studios

Universal Studios

There’s just no way to pick between these two dinos, who helped turn Jurassic Park into the biggest movie of 1993, and usher in the dawn of CGI. Between the terrifying majesty of T.rex, and the slow realization that the Raptors aren’t the mindless beasts we assumed them to be, this movie mixes the taut tension of a thriller with some of the most jaw-dropping action sequences in the history of film. It’s no wonder that the climactic moment of the movie is when the T. Rex and the Raptors finally face off in a throw down for the ages.

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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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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.