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Dino De Laurentiis, 1919-2010

Dino De Laurentiis, 1919-2010 (photo)

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You sometimes hear filmmakers described as “a director’s director.” Dino Di Laurentiis, who died yesterday at the age of 91, was a producer’s producer. In a career that spanned almost seventy years, he made every kind of movie imaginable, from arthouse classics to major blockbusters, from mainstream fare to quirky genre oddities, and worked with an impressive array of director’s from Federico Fellini to Michael Mann, Sidney Lumet to Milos Foreman.

For a comprehensive overview of his life, you can read The New York Times obit by Dave Kehr, but I’d recommend Jeffrey Wells’ take over at Hollywood Elsewhere, not because he has a particularly encyclopedic knowledge of the man but because he decided to bash his body of work in the obit — calling him “a primitive showman” with the “philosophy… of a wheeler-dealer” — which prompted an interesting discussion about De Laurentiis’ legacy and the ethics of obituary writing.

It’s hard to argue that Di Laurentiis’ record was perfect. He certainly was involved in his share of stinkers (if you’ve never seen his “Jaws” ripoff “Orca” keep it that way). But I look at his IMDb page and see a lot of great movies: “Serpicio,” “The Dead Zone,” La Strada,” “Blue Velvet,” “Army of Darkness,” Manhunter,” and “Conan the Barbarian,” which turned Arnold Schwarzenegger from a punchline into a movie star (Earlier today, Schwarzenegger tweeted “Dino De Laurentiis always said to have a great life you need 3 things: brain, heart, balls. Let me tell you, he had them all. I’ll miss him.”). Stay in Hollywood long enough, and you’re going to be responsible for some flops. But only someone with brain, heart, and balls could last so long in the movie business, and make so many memorable films.

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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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