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Vivre Le Creep

Vivre Le Creep (photo)

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Ralph Meeker, Dan Duryea, Vince Edwards, Steve Cochran. There’s just something about the asshole.

Scratch that. That’s too strong and vulgar and dismissive of a word. More like… the shit bird, the hinky hombre, the gashouse palooka, whichever old-timey slang you choose to apply. These fellas are smarmy, slimy, ready with the pimp hand, and they sport that proverbial cat-that-ate-the-canary grin whenever a comely broad crosses their path. If you’re upset, you’re just, as Duryea spits in “The Little Foxes,” “showing off your grief” (though he dares utters this to a man, which, in the rare case of the actor’s screen career, causes Mr. Duryea to become the recipient of the bitch slap, rather than his usual backhand). And should you ever flag down a car in hysterical distress; the good looking stinker might not give you the comfort you require. He might just ask, à la Ralph Meeker as Mike Hammer, the most glorious a-hole of them all: “What’s this all about? I’ll make a quick guess. You were out with some guy who thought ‘no’ was a three-letter word. I should have thrown you off that cliff back there. I might still do it. Where are ya headed?”

Hey, at least he picked her up. As Meeker proved, a jerk can be a softie sometimes, though a clever, conniving one. Unlike the sensitive bad boy, he doesn’t buy all that romantic, raging on the heath hokum. In fact, he’s not one to get dizzy with a dame. He can be quite indifferent — you know, so many women, such little time, another babe will swing my way. I mean this as a true compliment, because how can you resist the Meeker? These jerk-faces are confident, charming meanies, who can dress a girl down with two hard-bitten lines, loosed with a breezy SOB savoir faire.

01062010_youthinrevolt13.jpgAnd oh, yes, that can work some dangerously seductive mojo on a gal. Forget Sylvia Plath and her fascist fetish, boot in the face business; every woman loves a heel in the face, as in the shitheel. When Jean-Paul Belmondo, though a tragic romantic, still manages to petulantly stare down the beautiful waif Jean Seberg, the girl every supposedly “decent” man wants to save from ruin, she can’t resist. After all, as he says himself, “I’m an asshole.”

This is the type of creature Michael Cera must create in Miguel Arteta’s “Youth in Revolt” (adapted by Gustin Nash from the cult novel by C.D. Payne), and, not surprisingly, his object of amour is obsessed with… Oh, la, la! Belmondo! She’s a full-on ’60s Franco-phile, in love with an era when the men were allowed to be weird-looking, the women almost obnoxiously beautiful, and Serge Gainsbourg, a sly brilliant fox, reigned supreme. Wily Serge charmed sweet little France Gall into turning a seemingly innocent lollipop song into an act of fellatio. He also got away with proclaiming his wish to “fuck” Whitney Houston, to her face, on French television and… oh, the French! How can you not love Serge? I certainly do.

But back to Michal Cera, an actor who is about as similar to Meeker, Belmondo and Gainsbourg as Rupert Graves is to Robert Mitchum. In a dual play on his own persona, that of the doe-eyed, insecure nerd whose wit, intelligence and Frank Sinatra records (of course, Sinatra) aren’t going to find him in any young woman’s bedroom anytime soon, and the cool ladykiller of legend, he creates an insidious alter ego named Francois Dillinger to aid in seducing the girl of his dreams, Sheeni Saunders (Portia Doubleday). Does it work? Damn straight it does. Sporting a pencil thin mustache, tight white trousers, an ever-present cigarette and a flat-voiced sociopathic insouciance, Cera moves his shy, virginal outsider teen Nick Twisp into the suave, sexually confident transgressor Francois, amping up Sinatra’s “Pal Joey” credo of treating a lady like a dame, and a dame like a lady. Dames as in, tramps. They’re all tramps.

01062010_youthinrevolt18.jpgSince sensitive Twisp’s life seems awash with tramps — tacky, tactless life forms all engaging in wild sex acts instead of him, sometimes within earshot (including his own mother), jaundiced Francois doesn’t seem like much of a stretch. Sprung from now divorced, low-rent parents (Jean Smart and Steve Buscemi), he endures his mother’s stream of new boyfriends/sex toys (including a sleazy Zach Galifianakis and a scary Ray Liotta), and his father’s perpetual parade of absurdly hot jailbait partners. The world is one big squeaky mattress and hormonally hyperactive Nick is the guy kept awake by its ceaseless creaking.

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Give Back

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…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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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.

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

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

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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

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