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2006 Top Ten: Alison Willmore

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1. Inside Man

2. Children of Men

3. Brick

4. 4

5. Pan’s Labyrinth

6. The Death of Mr. Lazarescu

7. Old Joy

8. Three Times

9. The Proposition

10. Don’t Come Knocking

The top two films on my list are supposedly mainstream releases that knocked me flat. If you told me last year that a Spike Lee joint, even an underplayed one, would by my favorite film of the year, I would have laughed in your face (that’s the kind of obnoxious person I am). But darling Spike, who even at his best can be overwhelmingly abrasive, has had a hell of a year, with his four-hour Katrina requiem breaking hearts on TV whilst in theaters, unbelievably, he landed a mainstream hit. “Inside Man” is technically a heist film, but really it’s a love letter to post-9/11 New York, the warmest and wisest I’ve ever seen. As the film’s leisurely rhythms play out, it recalls “Dog Day Afternoon,” but also that even the grandest genre feats can be submerged in the irrepressible bustle of humanity. “Children of Men” is thrilling, a brilliantly envisioned near-future that’s the most believable dystopia ever brought to screen. Other films were boldly imperfect, worming their way back into my head months later — Ilya Khrjanovsky’s indescribable “4”; John Hillcoat’s “The Proposition,” which, unlikely as it seems, actually manages to make the western seem like something new; Wim Wender’s “Don’t Come Knocking,” minor but strangely and stubbornly moving. “The Death of Mr. Lazarescu,” “Old Joy” and “Three Times” were all films that needed to be seen in the theater to be appreciated — all operate in cadences best relished in a darkened cinema where they could command your senses. And Rian Johnson’s brilliant debut “Brick” is possibly the most purely enjoyable film of the bunch — at the very least, I’m sure it’s the one I’ll most remember a few years down the road.

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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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