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This List Rocks

The 10 Funniest Movies About Rock Bands

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Let’s face it: there’s something innately absurd about dedicating your life to sex, drugs and rock & roll. What could be sillier than making a living by banging on a guitar and howling incoherently about partying and your love of various parts of the female anatomy? Hollywood has naturally picked up on this by making a number of comedies that perfectly skewer the music world. To celebrate the guys from Blue Jean Committee getting the “Behind the Music” treatment on the Documentary Now! season finale, check out our picks for a solid day­long festival of rock band comedies.

10. Airheads

When the slacker idiots in LA metal band The Lone Rangers hatch a plan to get their demo tape played over the radio, the situation quickly devolves into a farcical hostage situation in this very ’90s comedy. Airheads also sees the first appearance of the “Evil Adult Contemporary Music” trope, as the station is about to switch format away from headbanging metal to easy listening for baby boomers.


9. Detroit Rock City

This teen comedy about a KISS cover band is set in 1978, aka the heyday of the face-painted rockers. The result is American Pie meets Dazed and Confused with a Ron Jeremy cameo.


8. The Rocker

Getting kicked out of a band is the kind of thing that can scar you for life. (Just ask Pete Best.) In The Rocker, Rainn Wilson plays an ousted drummer from a world ­famous heavy metal band who joins his teenage nephew to get back on stage, with hilarious results.


7. Deathgasm

The connection between heavy metal and the underworld is a strong one, something the splatter comedy Deathgasm makes very explicit. When a troubled teen accidentally summons a demon with cursed sheet music, the rockers of Deathgasm must muster all the power that brutal grindcore can deliver to send it back to Hell.


6. School of Rock

Sure they aren’t a professional rock band, but the kids in this classic Jack Black comedy sure can shred. The band has lived on through reunion concerts, an upcoming musical and talk of a sequel.


5. The Rutles: All You Need is Cash

The Beatles were rife for parody, and this pre­-fab four created by Monty Python member Eric Idle skewered John, Paul, Ringo and George’s late­ ’60s excess. The Rutles were a note-­perfect parody of Sgt. Pepper’s­ era Beatles, and the flick takes a mockumentary look at their rise and fall. A co-production from Idle and Saturday Night Live‘s Lorne Michaels, The Rutles features a “Who’s Who” of comedy and music cameos, including John Belushi, Bill Murray, Paul Simon and Mick Jagger.


4. Tenacious D In The Pick Of Destiny

Tenacious D’s big screen outing follows the duo as they steal a magical guitar pick made from Satan’s tooth to grant them rock stardom. Needless to say, things don’t go as planned and it ends with a Battle of the Bands involving the Dark Lord himself.


3. Still Crazy

Bill Nighy and Billy Connolly are among the cast of this riotous comedy about a glam rock band who had a brutal public meltdown in the ’70s and are now making a go of it 20 years later.


2. Get Him to the Greek 

Russell Brand’s decadent rocker Aldous Snow got promoted from Forgetting Sarah Marshall supporting player to the star of this hilarious look at the music scene. Everything from self-important charity ballads to insane record execs are brilliantly spoofed by writer/director Nicholas Stoller.


1. This Is Spinal Tap

Could there really be any other contender for the top flick on this list? Rob Reiner’s brilliant 1984 mockumentary chronicled the rise and fall of the greatest heavy metal band of all time. A staggering amount of footage was lensed with the main actors improvising and riffing off each other (no pun intended) and Reiner picked the best bits to make up the final cut. The film is still infinitely quotable and added “it goes to 11” to the pop culture lexicon.

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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.