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Wednesday odds: Portmanteau.

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"Is that Oprah?"
At his blog, David Bordwell has some fine musings on anthology/omnibus/ portmanteau films, both in the 50s and 60s and in their current renaissance, leading up to a plucking out of a half-dozen themes in "Chacun Son Cinéma…"

At The Age, David Thomson wonders if George Clooney is the new Cary Grant:

I like Clooney, and I am prepared to be tolerant with his "strategising" that if you make an Ocean’s Eleven, or Twelve, or Thirteen this year you can make a Syriana next – because, let’s face it, the Ocean’s films oil the machine, while Syriana is "important". Let me modify the above: I like Clooney, yet I think that bargain is hogwash and dangerous.

At The Stranger, Michael Atkinson writes about the early films of Michael Haneke:

If the Haneke we’ve embraced recently displays a breadth and vision that reaches far beyond the quotidian (psychology, self-reflexivity, and political resonance are areas he used to avoid), the first-phase Haneke was clearly inspired by the unanswerable existential questions rising like fumes from the most dreadful of ordinary newspaper stories.

Robert W. Welkos at the LA Times reports that Laura Kightlinger is suing Mike White over similarities between her script about a woman who rescues cats and his about a woman who rescues dogs — we’ll give you a second to reason out which of these sounds more familiar. The two were friends:

When her agent sent her White’s screenplay to read for a potential part, Kightlinger said she felt it was like a "stab in the back." She telephoned White and "I said, ‘What is going on?’ And he said, ‘Well, does it matter as long as you get it out there? Get the word out about animals?’ "

White denies this conversation ever occurred. He said she left an "accusatory" message on his answering machine. "She and I have never ever spoken about [my] script since she got it," he said.

At Cineaste, Rebecca M. Alvin has a fascinating if slightly sniffy ("So much for the passion of the ‘art house’ audience!") look at "microcinemas," the cinephile equivalent of the storefront church:

Makeshift theaters have spread across a wide range of communities and are taking up residence not only in actual movie theaters, but also in alternative spaces like tractor trailers, cafes and bars, church basements, and even health clubs. They call themselves microcinemas, and they bring with them the promise of a communal cinema experience, showing films with virtually no marketing campaigns, no stars, and no budgets.

Finally, at Slate, Christopher Bonanos answers, for once and for all, if pirates really say "arrrrr."

+ Can you spot all the auteurs in this picture? (
+ Is George Clooney the new Cary Grant? (The Age)
+ Glaciation and Bloodshed (The Stranger)
+ Screenwriters Laura Kightlinger, Mike White fight like cats and dogs over script (LA Times)
+ Cinemas of the Future (Cineaste)
+ Did Pirates Really Say "Arrrr"? (Slate)

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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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