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Opening This Week: October 5th, 2007

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By Christopher Bonet

IFC News

[Photo: “Finishing The Game,” IFC First Take, 2007]

A round-up of the best (or worst) $10 you’ll spend this week.

“Feel the Noise”

Take the storyline from “Glitter,” flip the gender of the main character, immerse the film in Latino culture, and add a flimsy gangster plotline to create “tension” and there you go: “Feel the Noise.” Omarion Grandberry, formerly of boyband B2K, stars as a young man from the Bronx who’s forced to relocate to Puerto Rico after a run-in with some thugs — he develops a love for Reggaeton. If the words “From Producer Jennifer Lopez” mean anything to you… well, you know what you’re getting into.

Opens wide (official site).

“Finishing the Game”

After slumming around on Hollywood trash with “Annapolis” and “The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift” (which, actually, we fond of) we’re really glad director Justin Lin is returning to the indie roots that made us love him in the first place. 2002’s “Better Luck Tomorrow” made a name for the then-unknown director as it tackled Asian-American stereotypes. “Finishing the Game” is a mockumentary about the true story of the production of Bruce Lee’s unfinished “Game of Death,” where studio executives held casting calls in search of a replacement. The film features a number of appearances from “BLT” cast members and even MC Hammer. Good times, y’all.

Opens in limited release (official site).

“For the Bible Tells Me So”

Winner of the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the Seattle International Film Festival earlier this year, director Daniel G. Karslake’s film charts the relationship between homosexuality and Christianity through the observations of five Christian American families wrestling with sexual identity and faith.

Opens in limited release (official site).

“The Good Night”

British thespian Martin Freeman plays Gary, a depressed man in a stagnant relationship who begins dreaming about romancing a beautiful woman (Penélope Cruz) who appears to him while he sleeps. Tired of her boyfriend’s lack of interest, Gary’s girlfriend (Gwyneth Paltrow) jets off to Italy, allowing Gary to fully immerse himself in his own dream world. Written and directed by Gwyneth’s bro Jake, the film sounds not unlike like a Michel Gondry pic without all the nifty visuals. “Hot Fuzz”‘s Simon Pegg and Danny De Vito co-star.

Opens in New York and Los Angeles (official site).

“The Heartbreak Kid”

We’re getting the felling that we’ve seen all that Ben Stiller can do, so we’ve got our doubts about this remake of the 1972 Elaine May film of the same title. Bobby and Peter Farrelly, desperately in need of a comedic hit after the drab romantic comedy “Fever Pitch” in 2005, enlist Stiller to play a newlywed who regrets marrying his wife and ends up meeting the girl of his dreams (the girl of our dreams, Michelle Monaghan). Wacky hijinks, we predict, shall ensue.

Opens wide (official site).

“Kurt Cobain: About a Son”

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time to break out the flannel. “Gigantic (A Tale of Two Johns)” director AJ Schnack helms this intimate documentary on iconic grunge frontman Kurt Cobain, based on the popular Michael Azerrad book “Come As You Are: The Story of Nirvana.” The conversations heard in the film have never before been made public, and they reveal a highly personal portrait of an artist much discussed but not particularly well understood.

Opens in New York (official site).

“Lake of Fire”

“American History X” director Tony Kaye returns with another film that we’re sure is going to ruffle a few feathers. Kaye tackles the ever-controversial debate on abortion and the lasting effects of the Roe vs. Wade judicial case of 1972 — the filmmaker reportedly spent the past 15 years working on this film which, as we’ve seen with his previous works, will likely cause heated debate, but which also premiered to fantastic reviews at Toronto last year.

Opens in limited release (official site).

“Michael Clayton”

George Clooney gets his lawyer on as an in-house “fixer” at a top New York law firm who risks his career (and possibly more…!) on a sabotaged class action suit that pits him against a rival litigator (Tilda Swinton, who always makes a movie better). Tony Gilroy, previously known for writing the Jason Bourne trilogy, makes his directing debut. Hopefully poor George’s ribs will be all healed by the time award season rolls around — his performance just screams of a nasty Cary Grant. And if Tom Wilkinson doesn’t get a supporting nod for his Howard Beale-esque turn as a brilliant attorney gone mad, we’re might have to hire a “fixer” of our own.

Opens in New York, Los Angeles, and Toronto (official site).

“My Kid Could Paint That”

If you think the parents of CBS’s controversial new reality show “Kid Nation” were crazy for letting their children star in an unsupervised “social experiment” about an adult-less world, wait until you see the parents of four-year-old Maria Olmstead, the subject of this documentary courtesy of Amir Bar-Lev, chronicling the rising stardom of a young artist often compared to Pablo Picasso — and whether or not she’s actually behind the art credited to her.

Opens in New York and Los Angeles (official site).

“The Seeker: The Dark is Rising”

For every successful “Harry Potter” film, there needs to be at least five “Eragon”‘s. “The Seeker: The Dark is Rising,” based on the Susan Cooper novel, follows a young boy whose life is turned upside down when he learns that he is the last of a group of immortal warriors who have dedicated their lives to fighting the forces of the dark. Yeah, it sounds a bit like “Star Wars” without the stars or the wars and with a lot more magic, but if you want to see “Deadwood”‘s Ian McShane show up for a paycheck, it might be worth it. Personally, we’re still dreading the long-rumored remake of “The Karate Kid.” Sweep the leg!

Opens wide (official site).

“Strange Culture”

“Teknolust” director Lynn Hershman-Leeson’s documentary follows a collection of actors interpreting the legally touchy subject of artist Steve Kurtz, currently imprisoned as a suspected terrorist because of his controversial works. The film premiered earlier this year at the Sundance Film Festival.

Opens in limited release (official site).


Director Allan Moyle helms this slacker comedy about two stoners (Wes Bentley and Scott Speedman) who get in way over their heads when they try to dump the body of a dead girlfriend in the basement of a drive-in movie theatre where a satanic cult performs ritual sacrifices. Considering the film’s offbeat premise and our love for all things “Empire Records,” we’re pretty sure Moyle can handle slacker comedy with the best of them (we’re lookin’ at you, Linklater), plus we can’t even remember the last time we saw Wes Bentley (has it already been five years since “The Four Feathers”?). The film premiered earlier this year at the Slamdance Film Festival.

Opens in Austin (official site).

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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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