This browser is supported only in Windows 10 and above.


Opening This Week

Posted by on

06162008_bricklane.jpgBy Neil Pedley

While Steve Carell and Mike Myers face off at the multiplexes this week, indie theaters fight back with a wide range of quirk, including a meter maid romance, a doc on balloon animals and a horror flick about killer hair extensions.

“Brick Lane”
“Brick Lane” in London’s East End might be just a relatively short jaunt down the M1 from Salford, but it’s still a million miles (and a decade) away from the careful multi-ethnic empathy of another film that dealt with south Asian refugees in England, the 1970s-set “East is East.” This story follows 18-year-old Nazneem (Tannishtha Chatterjee), who steps off a plane from Bangladesh and into an arranged marriage with middle-aged Chanu (Satish Kaushik). Bored and lonely, she’s forced to question her beliefs when the charismatic and secular Karim (Christopher Simpson) knocks on her door. Director Sarah Gavron landed herself a BAFTA nomination for this adaptation of Monica Ali’s somewhat controversial novel, which enraged local Bangladeshi residents with what they considered to be an unsophisticated portrayal of their culture, so much so that when production came to town, the locals forced the film’s producers to relocate.
Opens in limited release.

Parking attendants are the target of a very special kind of hatred, the type normally reserved for child murderers or people who gloat about their tofu consumption. Yet writer/director Cecilia Miniucchi’s debut feature bravely contradicts the widely accepted notion that meter maids are incapable of any human emotion beyond malevolence — that they need love, too. Kind but lonely Claire (Samantha Morton) enters into a darkly sardonic relationship with Jay (Jason Patric), who uses parking tickets as a way to vent his anger issues, and the two begin a caustic dance of courtship on the road to mutual redemption.
Opens in limited release.

“Exte – Hair Extensions”
While the idea of murderous hair extensions might sound like every emo kid’s wet dream, the realization that their fake locks target the head they sit upon might dampen enthusiasm somewhat. Acclaimed Japanese director Sion Sono (“Suicide Club”) nabbed the Horror Jury Prize at the last year’s Fantastic Fest in Austin for this dark and creepy tale of beauty-gone-bad that braids empowerment, pastiche and parody. Ren Osugi stars as the misogynist morgue attendant with a hair fetish who leaves work one night with a desecrated corpse that sprouts a never-ending possessed mane that he peddles to the local salon.
Opens in limited release.

“Get Smart”
With the likes of Austin Powers, and more recently, “O.S.S. 117” spy Hubert Bonisseur de la Bath trying to assault the box office as if it were a volcanic island fortress lair, the cold war spy spoof is veering dangerously close to cookie-cutter territory. Yet Maxwell Smart has returned in this update of the 1960s TV series with Steve Carell filling in for the late Don Adams as the overeager, painfully inept data CONTROL analyst who is teamed with Anne Hathaway’s Agent 99 to battle the crime ring KAOS after every other agent is compromised. The exclusion of the show’s original creators, Mel Brooks and Buck Henry, have ruffled the feathers of a few purists, but Warner Bros. is trying to entice the faithful and the fresh with an eight-minute clip freely available on iTunes.
Opens wide.

“Kit Kittredge: An American Girl
Having served as executive producer on the three preceding made-for-television movies, Julia Roberts and her Red Om Films Company once again give their stamp of approval to the first big screen adventure based on the popular doll series. None other than “Little Miss Sunshine”‘s Abigail Breslin stars in the title role as a resourceful 10-year-old growing up during the Depression who longs to be a big time news reporter. Joan Cusack, Chris O’Donnell and Julia Ormond fill out the supporting cast for the film, which was directed by “Mansfield Park” helmer Patricia Rozema and written by Ann Peacock, of “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe.”
Opens in limited release; opens wide on July 2nd.

“The Love Guru”
Before he gave a national audience their first glimpse of relationship guru Pitka on the season finale of “American Idol,” Mike Myers had been fairly secretive about his plans other than workshopping his latest creation in New York. With his first original live action character since “Austin Powers,” Myers stars as a shaman of the heart who’s hired to reconcile hockey star Darren Roanoke (Romany Malco) and his wife before it interferes with Roanoke and the Maple Leaves’ shot at the Stanley Cup. Jessica Alba, Justin Timberlake and naturally, Myers’ Mini-Me Verne Troyer all show up to help Myers do for marriage counselors what fellow “SNL” alum Adam Sandler recently did for Mossad-agents-turned-hair-stylists.
Opens wide.

“Twisted: A Balloonamentary”
Naomi Greenfield and Sara Taksler met in 2003 at St. Louis’ Washington University and bonded over balloon animals. Four years later, they premiered their first documentary at the SXSW Film Festival, which takes a look at that staple of preschool parties, the balloon artist. Toting their camera to the annual Twist and Shout balloon artist convention, they discover helium-filled art that’s not necessarily for the whole family and meet a few really unfortunately named people along the way (trailer park escapee Vera Stalker, John Holmes — oh dear, oh dear).
Opens in New York.

[Photo: “Brick Lane,” Sony Pictures Classics, 2007]

Watch More

Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

Posted by on
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…

Watch More

A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

Posted by on
GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.


Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

Watch More

WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

Posted by on

Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…


IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.


IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).


IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.


IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

Watch More