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Opening This Week: January 18th, 2008

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By Christopher Bonet

IFC News

[Photo: “The Business of Being Born,” Red Envelope Entertainment, 2008]

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

“The Business of Being Born”

Ricki Lake narrates this Abby Epstein-directed documentary about the birthing process and current medical techniques as the film follows a group of soon-to-be parents exploring their options both within the medical community and outside of it.

Opens in New York (official site).

“First Sunday”

While we miss the old Ice Cube of the N.W.A. and “Friday” days, it’s about time for us to accept he’s on the path of Steve Martin — a formerly brilliant Renaissance man now stuck doing Stone Age-level family-friendly fare for a big paycheck. But at least “First Sunday,” the debut theatrical feature from underground playwright David E. Talbert, has a surprising lead role for our favorite “30 Rock”-er Tracy Morgan as both he and Cube star as petty criminals who attempt to rip off a local church, only to learn the error of their ways from the parishioners they’re holding hostage. It may be Tyler Perry-lite, but at least no one’s in drag. That we know of.

Opens wide (official site).

“In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale”

2008 might be the Year of the Boll, as Uwe Boll, the universally panned director, is set to offer at least a double dose of what past efforts indicate are likely to be awful movies. First up is “In the Name of the King,” Boll’s highest budgeted film to date (an astounding $60 million) and, as usual for Boll, an adaptation of a semi-popular video game. Reading the plot summary makes us scratch our heads, so, in short, Jason Statham stars as a man named Farmer who attempts to rescue his wife from and avenge the death of his son on the Krugs, a race of animal warriors controlled by an evil Ray Liotta. Look forward to “Seed,” another Boll effort, later this month.

Opens wide (official site).

“The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything: A VeggieTales Movie”

The popular 2002 animated film “Jonah” gets a sequel as favorite VeggieTales characters Larry the Cucumber, Mr. Lunt and Pa Grape are whisked away from their jobs at the Pirate Times Dinner Theater and dropped in with real 17th century pirates. We may be outside the film’s faith-based kiddie demographic, but we’re still expecting this spoof film to be smarter than “Epic Movie.” We’re just sayin’.

Opens wide (official site).

“Running With Arnold”

Journalist Dan Cox’s documentary, which premiered at SXSW last year, examines Arnold Schwarzenegger’s life and gubernatorial campaign.

Opens in Los Angeles and San Francisco (official site).

“Woman on the Beach”

Korean auteur Hong Sang-soo releases another semi-autobiographical drama about an out of work filmmaker who convinces his friend to join him on a weekend beach getaway, only to be stricken with envy when that friend’s girlfriend joins them for the trip. Equal parts Francois Truffaut and Woody Allen, Hong’s latest is a gem worth catching if you have the opportunity.

Opens in New York (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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