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A Christian Baleout

A Christian Baleout (photo)

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All eyes might be on that resort town in the south of France, but we here at home can enjoy another bumper crop of releases comprising both arthouse excellence and blockbuster entertainment. Oh, and the Wayans brothers have a new movie out, too.

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“The Boys: The Sherman Brothers Story”
The unsung heroes (no pun intended) of the Mouse House’s most celebrated animated features, Oscar-winning composers Richard and Robert Sherman wrote the delightful ditties that were the core of hits like “The Jungle Book,” “Mary Poppins” and Disney theme park rides like “It’s a Small World.” Co-directed by their writer/producer sons, this doc charts the Sherman brothers’ ability to make beautiful music together even as their personal relationship was falling apart.
Opens in limited release.

“Burma VJ”
Danish helmer Anders Østergaard’s award-winning activist exposé highlights the extraordinary actions of the DVB (Democratic Voice of Burma), an organization whose members risk their lives to bring international attention to the plight of their countrymen under the military junta. Following the “Man on Wire” model of intermingling dramatic reconstruction with first-hand footage obtained illegally and at grave risk, “Burma VJ” documents the thousands that took to the streets in 2007 to protest for democracy. In English and Burmese with subtitles.
Opens in New York.

“Dance Flick”
Perhaps to clear the air since the “Meet the Spartans/Disaster Movie” duo of Aaron Seltzer and Jason Friedberg have come and gone, the Wayans brothers return to the genre spoofs they popularized with the “Scary Movie” series, only this time with Damien making his directorial debut. “Dance Flick” is very much a family affair, as Damon Jr. stars opposite white chick Shoshana Bush in a send-up of cross-cultural romances and yes, dance flicks, employing the now customary array of gross-out gags and slapstick schtick. One can only hope that if they can at least confine themselves to the genre they are allegedly spoofing, it will be a step in the right direction. See what we did there?
Opens wide.

“Easy Virtue”
After almost a decade on hiatus, Australian helmer Stephan Elliot marks his return with a bright and breezy adaptation of Noël Coward’s somewhat dry stage melodrama, refining it into a cinematic comedy of manners. Jessica Biel tries for serious actress status (which begs the question of why she wastes her time with dreck like “Next”?) as Larita Huntington, a fiercely independent young American widow who arrives across the pond on the arm of naïve aristocrat John Whittaker (Ben Barnes), to the amusement of his father (Colin Firth) and abject horror of his mother (Kristin Scott Thomas).
Opens in limited release.

“Ghosts of the Heartland”
Writer/director Allen Blumberg’s third outing in the big chair is a period noir that revisits the Red Scare from the point of view of a Chinese community wrestling the boot of McCarthyism from their chests. Philip Moon stars as a big city reporter who returns to his hometown of Millville to discover that the corrupt mayor (Michael Santoro) has politicized the growing concern over Communist infiltration and sharpened it into a weapon of extortion and intimidation against the town’s immigrant population.
Opens in New York.

“The Girlfriend Experience”
Rebounding from his grueling four-hour “Che,” director Steven Soderbergh delivers a low-key dissection of our faltering capitalist sensibilities that harks back to both “Bubble” and his 1989 breakthrough debut, though this time out the sex and lies are captured on DV. Set across a jumbled week in the run-up to last year’s election, and brisk at a mere 77 minutes, the film star adult movie actress Sasha Grey as upwardly mobile call girl Chelsea, who offers not just sex but a full range of luxuriant intimacy to a wide variety of wealthy clients at a time when everything is a commodity and commodities are rapidly losing their value.
Opens in New York and Los Angeles.

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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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