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Movies for book people, books for movie people.

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Flora Cross.As Time magazine’s arts crew points out, "tis the season when Hollywood gets literate." This prompts them to launch into a blow by blow comparison of the major literary adaptations vying for awards and box office dollars this year, and whether or not they live up to their generally beloved source books. If you’re wondering, they say "Brokeback Mountain" the short story was better, and we’d agree — of course, it’s one of the best short stories we’ve ever read. They also like "The Ice Harvest," the novel and "The Ice Harvest," the film equally well. We’re a little intrigued by the book, despite mixed feelings on the film — also, Terry Armour at the Chicago Tribune reports that, for all the film’s general bleakness, its ending isn’t nearly as dark as the book’s:

"The novel ended even more darkly than the film and the original script did," [Harold] Ramis said. "Everyone who ever looked at the original script–even Scott Phillips and the screenwriters [Richard Russo and Robert Benton]–said, `Gee, can it be so bleak at the end and have any commercial life?’"

On the topic of two other high-profile (though ultimately not-so-successful) literary adaptations, James Mottram at the Independent holds up "Bee Season" and "Where the Truth Lies" as prime examples of what can go wrong when successful indie types head over to Hollywood, though both films he addresses are technically indie. Mottram oddly ignores the whole adaptation angle, which is the basis of why "Bee Season" got made, passing up a prime chance to remind the world of "Where the Truth Lies" author Rupert Holmes‘ previous songwriting career. Really, then, why even bother?

Pat H. Broeske at the New York Times reports on Lasse Hallström‘s "The Hoax," about Howard Hughes’ supposed biographer Clifford Irving, whose book turned out to be a complete fabrication:

Mr. Irving is already complaining that the film takes so many creative liberties, that it will be "a hoax about a hoax."

Also at the Times, Broeske revisits the claims of Melvin Dummar, the Utah gas station operator who allegedly once found a solitary Hughes lying near the side of the road in the Nevada desert. After Hughes’ death, a handwritten will was discovered at the headquarters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In it, "Melvin DuMar" is left one-sixteenth of Hughes’ estate. The will was ruled a forgery, but Broeske writes that Gary Magnesen, a former FBI agent, has just published a book supporting Dummar’s story.

Once more at the Times, Dana Stevens has an interesting piece in which she reviews two books about black actors working during the period when the only roles open to them were terrible caricatures (this seems to be the issue haunting us today): Jill Watts’ "Hattie McDaniel: Black Ambition, White Hollywood," about  the actress best known for the role of Mammy in "Gone With the Wind"; and Mel Watkins "Stepin Fetchit : The Life and Times of Lincoln Perry," about the vaudeville and early talkies actor who created the controversial character he named after a racehorse.

And at the Hollywood Reporter, Gregory McNamee digs up some of the good gossip in "Live Fast, Die Young : The Wild Ride of Making Rebel Without a Cause," which, authored by two Us Magazine vets, appears to have plenty. Hoooo, yes.

+ Books Vs. Movies (Time)
+ Inside an ‘Ice Harvest’ secret (Chicago Tribune)
+ Why some indie directors fall on their faces in Hollywood (Independent)
+ Based on an Untrue Story (NY Times)
+ Melvin and Howard and Now Gary (NY Times)
+ Caricature Acting (NY Times)
+ Live Fast, Die Young (Hollywood Reporter)

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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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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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

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