Over the long weekend I was looking for a little entertainment and was pleasantly surprised by the new release of one of my old favorite games. I would be remiss not to mention it here, for it is a tale of passion, music and intense geekery. If you’re one of those people who wants to ban shooter games, or watches hours of vapid television but think video games are for fools, we can still be pals.
(WWII bombshell, Marlene Dietrich)
The game is called Forgotten Hope, originally a mod* for the blockbuster EA title, Battlefield 1942, the game that changed the first person shooter landscape. BF ’42, as it’s fondly called, was beloved by gamers of all stripes – it doesn’t matter who you vote for, every guy, and indeed some girls, like WWII war games. BF communities sprung up all across the internet, in countries spanning the globe, bringing young and old together to shoot at one another online. I was seduced along with a group of friends in 2002 when it released. To this day, BF ’42’s theme song is the only one to get stuck in my head since Super Mario Bros in 1984 when I finally got a Nintendo a year after everyone else.
Music plays a similar role in the ever growing game industry as it does in the film industry, and as I’ve argued before, is best left minimal in war films – the same applies in war games. I’d rather hear the pop of my M1 Carbine, the crunch of my boots, and the lamentations of my vanquished foes loud and clear. However, when well employed, a bit of music can be the most powerful catalyst to draw you in and keep you there.
The beautiful thing about Forgotten Hope, aside from it’s finely crafted historical setting, is that along with epic theme music on obligatory loading screens, there are old radios and phonographs in homes and bunkers littered throughout the recreated 40’s era world playing classics from the time period. Classics like Vera Lynn’s “We’ll Meet Again” (which played at the end of “Dr. Strangelove”) and Marlene Dietrich’s “Lili Marlene,” a personal favorite (see below). Dietrich was of course a German national turned Hollywood star, who opposed her homeland country’s fascistic aims and devoted herself to rallying the morale of US troops with her music – and legs and things no doubt.
BF ’42 is ancient in computer gaming years and the franchise has moved on, with several titles since, Battlefield 2 being the current basis for most of today’s mods, including the current Forgotten Hope build. That old BF ’42 theme song still works it’s way into some of the load screens though.
Original Battlefield 1942 theme song and intro:
Play! orchestra covering the theme song… hilarious!
*A mod is a free game made by independent developers in their spare time. Mods use exiting games as their foundation, though they are often radically different and unparalleled in both detail and playability. The current version of Forgotten Hope is 2.2 and is actually based on EA games’ newer, Battlefield 2 which you must own to play Forgotten Hope 2.2. It was released September 5th and servers are running it worldwide. Download links.
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:
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.
You’ll need them to get through the holidays.
So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).
With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.
Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…
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.
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.
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