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MUSIC FLICKS: Wayne’s World

MUSIC FLICKS:  Wayne’s World (photo)

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Last week, Lips and Rob, of the underappreciated–yet highly influential–metal band, Anvil, got their day in the spotlight when the documentary, Anvil! The Story of Anvil, received rave reviews from various media outlets (the movie may also help score them a record deal). The last time two jean-jacket-wearin’, hard-rock-lovin’ buddies received this much attention from the world of film and music was back in 1992, when Wayne and Garth (Mike Myers and Dana Carvey) captured the heart of heavy metal in Wayne’s World, which I still believe is one of the greatest movies about music ever made.

Ever since I started taking a look at current and past “music flicks,” I wanted to include this film, because like The Blues Brothers or This Is Spinal Tap, Wayne’s World became a measuring stick for all music movies that followed; which says a lot, considering the characters of Wayne and Garth aren’t even in a band.

We can argue for hours, but Wayne’s World’s car-sing-a-long to “Bohemian Rhapsody” is my all-time favorite scene in a music movie. It perfectly captures a Friday night in any-town America. Not to take anything away from Queen, but even kids who never saw Wayne’s World will bang their heads–ala Wayne and Garth style–during the song’s breakdown. That’s some pop cultural power!

Wayne’s World works so well as a music movie, because instead of taking us of into the lives of rock and roll stars, it gives us the perspective of a group of diehard rock and roll fans–and who can’t relate to that? The subtle rock music references throughout the movie are genius, everything from the conversation Wayne and a doorman (played by Meatloaf) have about a group called The Shitty Beatles, to the would-you-still-love-me? Ravi Shankar and Elvis scenarios, to the greedy businessmen, to the joy of flashing a backstage pass, to the roll-your-eyes service you usually receive at a music store (and we can’t forget about the “No Stairway To Heaven” sign either; a brilliant jab at the choice riff heard at guitar shops around the world).

Instead of just tackling music for an hour-and-a-half, Wayne’s World also takes us into the hang-out lives of Wayne, Garth, and their burnout buddies. I grew up in the same neighborhood as a bunch of metal-worshipping headbangers, and I can tell you that they did a lot more than sew Metallica patches on the back of their jean jackets. Like Wayne and Garth, they also enjoyed chasing girls, spewing into Dixie cups, hanging out at their favorite eatery, and playing street hockey–that’s right, not roller hockey, street hockey.

Besides forever altering the way we listen to Queen’s “Bohemain Rhapsody,” Wayne’s World also put its unique stamp on Jimi Hendrix’s “Foxy Lady” and Gary Wright’s “Dream Weaver.” I don’t know about you, but whenever I hear “Foxy Lady” I’m always tempted to throw the fox ears behind my head.

One of the funniest moments in the film–a moment that revealed heavy metal’s sense of humor–was the scene where Wayne and Garth are backstage at an Alice Cooper concert. Before Ozzy Osbourne sang with Miss Piggy or Metallica was blowing up houses in video game commercials, a deadpan Alice Cooper delivered the most eloquent lines a musician has ever spoken about the city of Milwaukee: It’s pronounced milly-wa-kay, which is Algonquin for the “good land.”

Wayne’s World was not the first or last time a blonde and brunette burnout duo etched themselves in our pop culture memory. Bill and Ted came before and Beavis and Butthead followed, but in many ways Wayne’s World was the swan song for the burnout culture–a group of kids that I don’t think even exist anymore in the hierarchy of high school social classes. In 1992, the big rock that Wayne and Garth loved was losing its stronghold to up-and-coming grunge and alternative bands. Jean jackets gave way to cardigan sweaters, and guitar solos were being replaced by blasts of feedback.

Besides being one the most quotable and hilarious movies from the 90’s (whether you have a clever or sophomoric sense of humor), Wayne’s World is also a perfect time capsule of the period in music right before things changed for good. But who knows? Maybe if Anvil’s Lips and Rob have their way, kids will be finger-tapping on their flying-V guitars and banging their mulletheads again–just like their parents did some 20 years ago. Party on Lips! Party on Rob!

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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 IFC.com

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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.

Uncle-Buck

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

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…