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Sundance 2008: “Frozen River.”

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Nothing under the tree.
Melissa Leo has a great face that looks like it’s been crumpled into a ball and hastily smoothed back out again. It gets plenty of play in "Frozen River," the debut feature from writer/director Courtney Hunt — the camera wanders pore-delvingly close to take in her chapped skin, the creasing around her eyes and her Sisyphean attempts to pretty up by applying mascara while still crying. Leo does as much as she can with the role of Ray Eddy, who works at a dollar store in upstate New York, dreams of trading in her single-wide trailer for a double-wide, obtains her TV from Rent-2-Own, feeds her two kids meals of Tang and popcorn and likes waving around her gun and shooting things, including the trailers of others and the foot of her gambling-addicted hubby, who’s fled with all of the family’s savings before the film begins. How many white trash stereotypes can one woman contain? Ray starts up a tense partnership with a sullen Mohawk woman (Misty Upham) on the nearby reservation, and the two drive illegal immigrants across the winter ice from Canada. "Frozen River" is adapted from a short, and you can see the promise in it and its world of rundown desperation. In its expanded form, though, it’s a scattering of unbelievable elements — included a nigh-unforgivable one involving an infant imperiled by a combination of racism and a sudden impulse of citizenship — and a perspective that flirts with condescension.

"Frozen River" currently has no U.S. distribution.

+ "Frozen River" (Sundance)
+ "Frozen River" (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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