This browser is supported only in Windows 10 and above.


Quiver along with “Sherlock Holmes.”

Quiver along with “Sherlock Holmes.” (photo)

Posted by on

“Sherlock Holmes” is poised to be the underperformer of December’s limited blockbuster crop, because a) most Americans don’t care about the adventures of a dead white Victorian, even if he knows kung-fu b) Watson and Holmes are a little gay, and America doesn’t care for that kind of thing in its action heroes (or, apparently, its state legislation). Or something.

Every box-office “analyst” and trend-watcher in the United States of America has, based on this fact and “The Soloist,” expressed concern that Robert Downey Jr. is no longer a star. Brows will furrow. Next summer, “Iron Man 2” will come out and makes barrowloads of money and all will be forgiven.

But until that happens, let’s look at the marketing that will help “Sherlock Holmes” underperform. There are many ways to do tie-ins to your movie. If, for example, you have Jude Law and Robert Downey Jr. in bed together, you’ve pretty much lost the Happy Meal demo. But you can still access millions of Americans who regularly visit 7-Eleven, even though 7-Eleven is pretty much synonymous with bad coffee, skater kids in the back and sheer, suburban necessity.

It was funny when certain 7-Elevens turned into Kwik-E-Marts for “The Simpsons Movie,” and generic action tie-ins like the G.I. Joe Liquid Artillery Slurpee flavor make demographic sense. But why you’d condescend to consumers — both of 99-cent Taquitos and holiday action fare — with smarmy taglines like “Solve your hunger!” and “Investigate our coffee” is, uh, a real mystery. (See? I can do this too!)

12032009_sherlockholmes4.jpgBut more symptomatic and weird is the news that ten theaters will feature D-BOX Technology, which lets you “experience the film from seats that move simultaneously with the onscreen action.” It is what it says it is: stimulation for movies that don’t need any more. Their presence is still minimal, even though ten theaters is way up from this summer’s three — but there are a bunch of Blu-Rays you can try it out on, should you be willing to spend $3600 for the cheapest variant, the “Universal Motion Platform” to be installed under existing seats.

The D-BOX-ready titles available so far are understandable, with a few odd bumps thrown in. I get how “Transformers” becomes way more kinetic when you’re being shaken around in time with the shaky-cam on screen, but did the world really need “Heat” with each gunshot giving “a satisfying thump to the chair”?

C’mon, if you really need a quivering seat to convince you that dated shlock like “The Towering Inferno” can help convince “anyone skeptical that a film in the mid-1970s could be action packed” (a quote, like the one above, courtesy of DailyGame‘s Jonas Allen), then your primary interest isn’t in movies. It’s in getting sensorily pummeled in every possible direction.

The real question: who are these people who think a Guy Ritchie or Michael Bay movie isn’t hyperkinetic enough? I’m willing to believe 3D is here to stay, but this is… silly. Just turn your speakers up loud enough to shake your chair. There — problem solved.

[Photos: “Sherlock Holmes” 7-Eleven ad, courtesy of Todd Mecklem; “Sherlock Holmes,” Warner Bros., 2009]

Watch More

The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

Posted by on

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

Watch More

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

Posted by on

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.

Watch More

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

Watch More