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Wednesday odds: Ours and theirs.

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"Did I hear that code red or am I losing my shit?"
At the Star-Ledger, Charles Taylor writes that "The British zombie thriller ’28 Weeks Later’ suggests just how much the world fears and mistrusts America right now."

For American moviegoers it’s a thoroughly uncomfortable experience (not that it’s particularly comfortable for anyone else — the movie is brutal, bloody and terrifying).

But "28 Weeks Later" winds up suggesting that the self-hatred we are tempted to by our current de graded state is a moral copout, a way of ignoring the basic truth that no one who has ever hated his country has changed it.

It’s a great read, one we’d rather direct you to than sum up. On a vaguely similar topic, Rob Nelson at the Village Voice, on the topic of the Museum of the Moving Image’s horror retrospective, writes:

A quarter-century later, my adult defense of the genre is that horror is cinema in extremis: the point at which the notion of "entertainment" is called most compellingly into question, the mode that most fully collapses the barrier between screen and spectator, all but demanding not only a visceral response, but a theoretical or philosophical one. Great horror—Tobe Hooper‘s Chain Saw (1974), Wes Craven‘s The Last House on the Left (1972), Zombie‘s The Devil’s Rejects (2005), and, yes, Hostel (all of which are in the MoMI series)—goes further still to challenge the tenets of the society that spawned it. Globalizing the genre, Hostel, named for a Slovakian tourist trap, enhanced its resonance by grossing big worldwide—even in Slovakia, where, Roth says, "our" fear of "their" loathing plays for shits and giggles.

Philip Kennicott at the Washington Post dedicates a sizable amount of space to Chinese doc "Please Vote for Me," which follows a third-grade campaign for class monitor in Wuhan and which is making its North American premiere at Silverdocs.

At indieWIRE, Anthony Kaufman checks in on the Romanian cinematic revolution.

Marc Schilling at the Japan Times reviews both comedian Hitoshi Matsumoto‘s "Dai Nipponjin" and one-time comedian Takeshi Kitano‘s "Kantoku Banzai!", which  both opened last weekend in Japan.

"Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End" has been censored for Chinese audiences, according to BBC.

"[A Beijing News] report said the cuts make the film difficult to follow. ‘The sudden debut of the captain confused the audience at the Beijing screening,’ the report said." Insert your own snide comment about the uncut version’s comprehensibility here: __________

+ This movie challenges what it means to be an American (Star-Ledger)
+ The Zeitgeist Made ‘Em Do It (Village Voice)
+ Of Tykes and Tyrants: Elementary Democracy (Washington Post)
+ Romania’s Cinematic Revolution: Struggling Against the Past (indieWIRE)
+ Japanese comic titans double the laughs (Japan Times)
+ China censors ‘cut’ Pirates film (BBC)


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


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.


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…