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The strangeness of that John Hughes tribute.

The strangeness of that John Hughes tribute. (photo)

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Nothing in last night’s Oscar ceremony showed quite the lapse in judgment of the epically long John Hughes tribute montage, in the face of which everyone fell silent and wondered what they were watching. Sure, Hughes is widely beloved by ’80s teens and even by ’90s kids — his death sparked an internet outpouring of emotion to almost rival Michael Jackson’s. But that didn’t seem to merit the separate montage and subsequent parade of oral tributes from Hughes’ unofficial acting company.

Forget the Farrah Fawcett snub and the relegation of Eric Rohmer to also-ran status. In stopping everything dead to pay tribute to a man who never came within striking distance of a nomination, the Oscars effectively (and unwittingly) made a case for their obsolescence. Here, apparently, is the man who warped the ’80s more than any other writer/director, and who some people never got over, as if he were their own personal Woodstock. A man whose work, by its very populist nature, was destined to bypass the awards rat-race, one for whom there’s no real contemporary analogue (Judd Apatow maybe, but it’s not the same).

03082010_breakfast.jpgThis is so strange — stranger than the Best Picture victory of the lowest-grossing winner ever (still wrapping my head around that), stranger than those silly dance numbers, stranger than whatever was going through George Clooney’s head. For a few minutes, everything stopped dead so we could contemplate how — even in a year when a movie critics actually liked won and more people tuned than ever since 2005 — nothing will ever matter as much as “The Breakfast Club.” And Duckie. This even though most reasonable people are willing to concede that the films a) aren’t that good b) certainly didn’t deserve their own segment, no matter what garbage the Academy normally honors.

It was nice to see Macaulay Culkin. You’d think such a ceremony would at least give everyone a few minutes of unforced nostalgia and reverie (unlike the forced frog-march of Look How Magical Movies Are that characterize most of the montages and tribute). Instead, everyone looked different and horrifying and had nothing to say. A missed opportunity.

[Photos: “Pretty In Pink,” Paramount, 1986; “The Breakfast Club,” Universal, 1985]

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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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