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The review, the interview.

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052605_tanukigotenIn her review in indieWIRE, a disappointed Kristi Mitsuda puts "Saving Face" in the "endearingly zany" school of ethnic dramedies, alongside such recent fare as "Bend It Like Beckham" and "My Big Fat Greek Wedding."

[R]ather than examining intergenerational cross-cultural rifts in a real way, these stories trade on idiosyncratic quirks of ethnicity that, more often than not, serve only to further stereotype whatever racial group at hand. Instead of fleshing out the clichés and illustrating their basis in reality while also bringing to bear a deeper degree of nuance, such culture-clash endeavors take the easy way out by caricaturing while ostensibly humanizing.

Ah, sad. From what we’ve read, the film is a frustrating mixture of promising and formulaic. Here at IFC News, Andrea Meyer has an interview with director Alice Wu, who speaks rather poignantly about making the film for her mother, who’s always deflected expectations and hopes onto her daughter: "I wanted to write something to let her know that at any point in her life, her life could begin."

In the Japan Times, Mark Schilling reviews Seijun Suzuki‘s "Princess Raccoon," a stylized period musical, sort of, with Jo Odagiri and Zhang Ziyi (who speak archaic Japanese and Mandarin, respectively, except sometimes when they sing, or…rap). The film delighted Manohla Dargis when it screened out-of-competition at Cannes. It sounds typical of Suzuki, the elder bad boy (if that’s possible) of Japanese cinema — visually stunning and narratively incomprehensible, like when someone’s telling you a rambling story as you slip in and out of sleep. Schilling and Mamiko Kawamoto also have an interview with Suzuki, jolly at almost 82 despite needing an oxygen tank.

As others have noted, what little coverage Hong Sang-soo‘s "Tale of Cinema" received, screening in-competition at Cannes, wasn’t great, even from the French, who are in many ways the Korean director’s biggest champions. In the Korea Times, Shim Sun-ah has what’s not quite a review of the film, more a detailed look at its theme of people absorbing and imitating the behavior and mannerisms of movie characters. Accompanying it is a "How’d Cannes go?" interview with the film’s star, Kim Sang-kyung.

+ Small Change: Alice Wu’s "Saving Face" (indieWIRE)
+ "Saving Face" director Alice Wu: The Chinese lesbian poster child (IFC News)
+ A dog-day afternoon awaits at the theater (Japan Times)
+ Still breathing, still laughing (Japan Times)
+ Truth, Fiction Mingle in ‘Cinema’ (Korea Times)
+ ‘Tale of Cinema’ Star Looks Back at Cannes Fest (Korea Times)

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Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.

Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.


Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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