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Recent Entertainment articles from Daily Dot

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    Crashing celebrity parties seems like a fun hobby, like organizing a low-risk heist. But YouTube vlogger James Ware, who gatecrashed the premiere of the new James Bond film Spectre by stealing someone's ticket off of Instagram, probably went too far.

    Ware found the photo of the ticket and used its barcode to sneak into the premiere. It was a clever trick, but also an undeniably douchey one. We can't help but wonder what happened to the ticket's rightful owner, and whether they were turned away at the door. 

    Ware described his plan as being worthy of James Bond himself, but we doubt 007 would approve of publicly documenting the whole thing on YouTube. Since Ware's channel also includes things like instruction videos for breaking into luxury hotels, we're guessing it's only a matter of time before he gets caught.

    Update 5:54pm CT: It was only the spectre of deceit after all. Business Insider confirmed with the Royal Albert Hall’s box office that Ware actually purchased a ticket to the event. “We are happy to confirm that he was actually an official premiere guest,” an employee wrote to BI.

    Screengrab via James Ware/YouTube


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    BY ANDREA REIHER

    Serena Williams has a new man in her life: she found her Narwhal Bacon at Midnight in Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, according to Us Weekly.

    A source tells the magazine that the Drake relationship was merely a “flirty friendship,” but recently the tennis star met Ohanian at a lunch and they hit it off.

    Williams was spotted with Ohanian at her workout at the Los Angeles School of Gymnastics Saturday (Oct. 24), where he was heard calling her “babe” and they were seen holding hands.

    RELATED: JK Rowling smacks down Serena Williams Twitter troll

    The source adds that Ohanian was never into tennis before he began dating Williams, but he was tweeting his support of her back in May during the 2015 French Open, which Williams won, so he was at least somewhat into the sport. Or perhaps he was just into Williams, which is fair—she’s a boss on the court.

    Either way, dating one of the best stars to ever play the game is one way to get into tennis.

    Photo via Boss Tweed/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)


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    The Daily Dot is celebrating Woman Crush Wednesday, better known as #WCW onTwitter andInstagram, by highlighting female creators onYouTube whose work we admire.

    True to her channel name, every video Lex Fleming creates makes you look.

    She started her channel (Madeyewlook) while still in high school, retreating into the world of makeup to both express her creativity and cope with unceasing bullying and her recent diagnosis with Type 1 diabetes. In four years, Fleming has turned her passion into a thriving business, complete with over 103 million views across her body art tutorials and her own makeup company, T1D.

    In her videos, Fleming goes all out re-creating monsters, cultural icons, and innovative characters, all on the canvas of her own face. She’s transformed into the Beast from Beauty and the Beast, gone mad as a Hatter, and, in the spirit of Halloween, taught viewers how to create everything from peeled skin to zombie bite marks. It’s easy to fall into a rabbit hole of Fleming’s videos, as her simple instructions for complex looks make a 10-minute video go by in a blink. Even as a makeup novice, once I’ve started one of her videos, I’m in it to win it, as Fleming’s freelance sketches turn into some of the most outstanding art I’ve ever seen on the platform.

    In addition to having a deep love of creativity, Fleming is a staunch ally against bullying on YouTube. In her channel bio, she addresses the matter head on, telling viewers:

    “Please do not bully or leave negative comments on here towards me, or others. Always be kind, you never know what is happening in someone else’s life.”

    Fleming believes in the healing power of makeup, as it allows individuals to build confidence, cover scars, and find beauty within themselves. She’s not alone in this attitude either; viral videos like the “Power of Makeup” trend and Amy Schumer’s “Girl, You Don’t Need Makeup” speak out against makeup shaming in the beauty community.

    Along with creators such as Pixiewoo and Kandee Johnson, Fleming has expanded the genre of beauty on YouTube past lookbooks and smokey eye tutorials into a world where oddballs and outlandish ideas are celebrated. Because when it comes to something as simple as back-to-school makeup tutorials, wouldn’t you rather have this trick stowed away in your back pocket?

    Screengrab via Madeyewlook/YouTube


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    Adele had us at “Hello.”

    The British singer’s video for her new single broke YouTube records, according to the video company. Adele was adding views at the rate of 1 million per hour during her first two days on the platform, with 50 million views over that time. She’s topped 110 million in her first week, putting her on track to join the billion views club with mega hits like “Gangnam Style.”

    But we couldn’t help but wonder: With the amount of time the world has collectively poured into Adele's comeback track in just a week, what else could we have accomplished?

    By the numbers

    • Views (as of 9am PT, Oct. 28): 110,966,747
    • Length of video: 6 minutes, 7 seconds (rounded to 6.12 minutes)
    • Minutes of watch time:  679,116,492
    • Hours of watch time: 11,318,608
    • Days of watch time: 471,608
    • Years of watch time: 1,291

    In that time, you could…

    1) Make 67 round trips to Pluto.

    The fastest spacecraft to date is New Horizons, and it took nine and a half years to reach Pluto and its moons. Powered by Adele watch-time, we could have made enough back-and-forth trips to call it a regular airline route at this point. You could almost make a 68th round trip, but you’d just fall short.

    2) Watch the entire Harry Potter, Star Wars, and Lord of the Rings modern film catalogs 181,358 times. 

    The entire Potter collection clocks in at 1,178 minutes. Add on another 1,170 for Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit extended versions, plus 794 minutes for all six Star Wars movies to date, and you get a total of 3,745 minutes of watch time, or 62.41 hours. You could fit 181,358 cycles through the nerd marathon within “Adele Time,” enough to make you the ultimate expert.

    3) Go on a reading binge of The Hunger Games, Game of Thrones, The Twilight Saga, Atlas Shrugged, and the Bible 50,989 times.

    We don’t know what kind of person would read all those books straight through in succession, but it would take them a considerable amount of time. Based on data from Personal Creations, at an assumed speed of 300 words per minute, the average reading speed, the books would take a total of 221.98 hours. A Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) clocks in the longest at 98.33 hours, while Hunger Games only takes a quick 16.75 hours to digest. But in the time we’ve spent collectively watching Adele, we could have made it 50,989 times through the reading list. Ever wonder if Atlas Shrugged would hold up on the 50,989th reading? Here’s your chance to find out.

    4) Have 1,684 successive pregnancies of a human child.

    Assuming traditional 280-day gestational cycles, that's 1,684 babies born if one immoral woman continued to birth out an endless stream of children, all while listening to “Hello.” However, if we're talking elephants, the longest gestational cycle in mammals, we’d only achieve 713 successive pregnancies. 

    5) Grow a redwood tree from seedling to maturity.

    Redwoods vary in age, but the oldest living ones range from 1,200 to 1,600 years old, meaning in “Adele Time” we could nurture and grow a single tree. However, we could not yet match the oldest trees on Earth, which are Bristlecone pines and estimated to be 5,000 years old. That would require more than a month of watching “Hello” at its current rate.

    6) Travel back in time to 724 AD and live in the century of Beowulf's composition.

    Adele watch time accounts for 1,291 years (figuring for leap years), and so for a single human to start watching Adele for that amount of time and stop in 2015, they'd be coming from the eighth century AD. This is the century of Viking exploration, Beowulf's composition, and the halt of westward Arab expansion. In 724 specifically, according to Wikipedia, you’d be witness to the abdication of Empress Genshō in Japan to her 23-year-old nephew Shōmu, the 45th monarch of the country. 

    7) Watch Kim Kardashian’s infamous sex tape 133,648,349 times.

    Sure, that’s right about on-par with our Adele view count, except the Kardashian tape clocks in a minute and two seconds shorter than Adele's video. However, it’s also been watched 127,692,514 million times on PornHub to date (link NSFW), clocking in at 648,677,971 minutes of total watch time. That means that one week of Adele’s total watch time is still more than the lifetime watch time of the world's most famous sex tape. There’s hope for humanity yet.

    Screengrab via Adele/VEVO


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    Get your tissues ready.

    YouTuber Carl James surprised his mom in the hospital before her kidney transplant, and his video about it will make you cry. 

    Some backstory: James' mother has been fighting a disease for 10 years, and recently got the good news that she could get the kidney transplant she needed. But since James' family lives in the U.S. and he's more than 4,000 miles away in Germany, he hadn't planned on seeing his mother before her big day. 

    Then, at the last minute, "with the help of some amazing family friends," James was able to fly out in time to surprise his mom at the hospital an hour before her operation. He brought a camera with him.

    Make sure you watch until the end, too, because he gets to surprise his sister the same way later on in the day. 

    Screengrab via Carl James/YouTube


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    In a promo for the streaming service TidalBeyoncé reworks the lyrics to Prince's "Darling Nikki" and makes them about her pal Nicki Minaj. Specifically, her butt.

    "Darling Nicki (Minaj)" was uploaded to Beyoncé's YouTube channel to promote the video for their "Feeling Myself" performance at the Barclays Center Tidal X concert, and features behind-the-scenes footage of the duo rehearsing.

    As for the lyrics themselves, they're decidedly more PG than Prince's originals. 

    Here's a look at Prince's verse: 

    I knew a girl named Nikki,
    I guess you could say she was a sex fiend.
    I met her in a hotel lobby
    Masturbating with a magazine.
    She said, "How'd you like to waste some time?"
    And I could not resist when I saw little Nikki grind.

    And then Beyoncé's update:

    I met this girl named Nicki,
    I guess you could say she was the rap queen.
    I met her in the studio lobby,
    But her booty looked bigger in the magazines.
    She said, "Bey will you jump on this song of mine?"
    How could I resist when I heard little Nicki rhyme?

    A match made in heaven. 

    H/T Vulture | Screengrab via Beyoncé/YouTube


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    Well that got meta. 

    At the start of every episode of season 2 of James Franco's surprisingly good webseries Making a Scene, he spins a wheel of TV show titles to decide which two he'll mash up. In past episodes he's spun things like Friendtervention or Seinfeld M.D. to great success.

    But this week, he spun That '70s Show twice. Like a true improviser, instead of cutting around the double-whammy and spinning the wheel again, Franco stuck to his guns and gave us a scene from That '70s 70s Show.

    The scene asks a simple question: What if the characters from That '70s Show never left the Foremans' basement, and now they were all north of 70 years old?

    It's a great excuse for Franco to showcase his Ashton Kutcher and Topher Grace impressions.

    Screengrab via Making a Scene with James Franco/AOL


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    BY BREE BROUWER

    As Bullying Prevention Month draws to a close, the Ad Council is promoting a new anti-bullying campaign with help from popular YouTube stars. The non-profit organization known for socially-minded PSAs has teamed with digital creators such as the Fine Bros. and Grace Helbig to launch the I Am a Witness campaign.

    Developed in partnership with Goodby Silverstein & Partners and several non-profits and youth experts, the Ad Council’s I Am a Witness campaign seeks to encourage teens to take a stand against bullying. The nonprofit organization notes in a release how Pew Research discovered 90 percent of young adults aged 12-17 who have witnessed online bullying ignore what they experienced. Furthermore, 35 percent of teens in this age range keep quiet and let online bullying go unpunished on a regular basis. The Ad Council wants to encourage these teens to speak out against bullying instead of remain silent.

    As part of the I Am a Witness initiative, the Ad Council partnered with several YouTubers to create videos which help spread the anti-bullying message. In addition to the Fine Bros. and Helbig, GloZell GreenMeghan RienksJoshuaDTV, and Ricky Dillon encouraged to create content and distribute that content on their YouTube and social channels to raise awareness for the Ad Council’s campaign and its newly created emoji of a speech bubble with an eye in the center, which empowers teens to spread the anti-bullying message through text.

    In addition to content created by the Ad Council’s YouTube partners, companies such as Apple, Adobe, Facebook, Johnson & Johnson, and Google helped create awareness of the I Am a Witness anti-bullying campaign. The Ad Council also worked with brands like Tumblr, Snapchat, Pandora, and Vevo to release I Am a Witness–related content on those platforms. Finally, the Ad Council has launched the I Am a Witness iOS and Android keyboard app, which teens can download to use the new eye emoji.

    “All teens are impacted by bullying and they often feel helpless when they witness it. Emojis have become a second language for teens, and they provide a relevant and easy way to get involved,” said Lisa Sherman, President and CEO of the Ad Council. “Through this extraordinary collaboration of media, non-profit, and corporate partners, along with influencers that teens look up to, we will transform witnesses from passive bystanders into a united, empowered, and active collective that will speak up against bullying.”

    The Ad Council has worked frequently with YouTube stars in the past under its Creators for Good campaign. Rienks already created a video for the Ad Council to help raise awareness for dating violence. More recently, Joey Graceffa told the full story of his coming-out process for the Council’s Love Has No Labels initiative.

    You can learn more about the Ad Council’s I Am a Witness campaign on the initiative’s dedicated Tumblr site at IWitnessBullying.org.

    Screengrab via Ad Council/YouTube


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    Fans may be able to sign up for a free month of YouTube Red starting today, but YouTube says not to worry—creators will still be getting paid for all the views those free users generate.

    YouTube Red, the new paid subscription service from YouTube, launches today with a 30-day trial for new users to get them acclimated to the system. Creators and fans began to worry that this would mean creators would spend 30 days losing a cut of their revenue since they wouldn't get ad money or subscription money from the free users. YouTube dispelled that rumor today with a blog post outlining how they'll fund the creators during month one.

    "With Google Play Music subscribers instantly joining YouTube Red, we will pay a portion of the revenue we receive from these subscribers to our creators on day 1," explained Senior Product Manager Matt Leske in the blog post. "Even with 30 day free trials, our creator community will make as much or more as they would have without YouTube Red."

    Essentially YouTube and Google will dip into their own cut of Google Play Music subscribers who will now have access to YouTube Red as part of their subscription, but who won't be granted the free month trial since they're already active members. This means starting today YouTube creators will be generating income from two different YouTube pools, via advertisements and via subscription payments.

    After the trial, Red will cost $9.99 a month and offer offline viewing, ad-free viewing, and background play. Creators will take 55 percent of total net revenues, based on watch time. 

    The system has been controversial, and since YouTube required all Partners to agree to new terms of service to be included in the site-wide system, any who did not had their videos made private before the launch. It's a small percentage of overall creators, but the most notable holdout from Red is ESPN. The network can't participate due to rights issues, and so all of its channels are now empty on YouTube

    Screengrab via Red/YouTube


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    When we last saw Abbi and Ilana on Hack Into Broad City, the mini-sketch webseries they do between seasons, the ladies were cleaning out their closets and donating clothes. But now that their wardrobes are in order they're focused on a new project: Halloween costumes.

    This week's episode starts with the ladies FaceTiming each other to reveal the looks they've put together, and it turns out being on the same wavelength as your best friend might have a downside. 

    Or does it? 

    H/T Splitsider | Screengrab via Comedy Central/YouTube


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    Three of YouTube's biggest names are reuniting for a second feature film, and this time they've brought on major distributor, Lionsgate.

    After the success of Camp Takota in 2014, Grace Helbig, Hannah Hart, and Mamrie Hart will soon start pre-production for Dirty Thirty, their newest comedy film about a disastrous birthday party. The trio also revealed Thursday that they have decided to partner with Lionsgate for the distribution of their film. Helbig, Hart, and Hart explained their decision stemmed from the company's willingness to take risks and support their creative vision, according to the Wrap

    The three stars also invited viewers to RSVP to the event and follow the process as it unfolds through the film's website

    The production team for Dirty Thirty includes none other than Hart, Hart, and Helbig themselves, along with Michael Goldfine and Ken Treusch and Vincent Nastri as executive producers. Andrew Bush will be directing from a script written by Mamrie Hart and Molly Prather.

    To express excitement for the project, Jordan Gilbert of Lionsgate said in a statement, “As we build out our original digital offerings, we continue to look for projects that fit Lionsgate’s brand as a leader in supplying the next generation of global content and ‘Dirty Thirty’ perfectly fits that mandate," the Wrap reported.

    “Grace, Mamrie, Hannah and the entire team have proven that they understand the digital audience and we are excited to be working with them on this long-form digital feature,” he said.

    Dirty Thirty will start showing in 2016.

    Screengrab via Dirty Thirty/YouTube


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    Since 2012, Above Average has played host to non-Saturday Night Livematerial from those who are on Saturday Night Live, including webseries that revolve around rival notaries public and a media coach who gives her clients horrendous advice.

    Now, Above Average, the digital video extension of SNL producer Lorne Michaels' Broadway Video, has set its sights on sports, as it debuts "the Kicker," a streaming-video/fake news site that combines sports and comedy with help from (on the comedy side) former SNL standout Andy Samberg, current SNL veteran Kenan Thompson, and "Weird Al" Yankovic (that's him in the photo above, by the way), and (from the sports side) Giants receiver Odell Beckham and Eagles receiver DeMarco Murray.  

    As Bryan Tucker, SNL's co-head writer and editor of the Kicker, writes, "We thought the world needed another website. Welcome to The Kicker, a place for sports fans to laugh. We’re comedians and comedy writers, but we’re also truly, rabidly into sports. We will have videos, articles and lots of daily content for sports fans of all types. Our mission is to keep it positive, fan-centric, and most of all, fun. We’re not here for analysis or commentary. There’s enough of that out there. We’re here to be funny."

    Here's a sampling of what the Kicker has produced thus far.

    So, what's the point of the site, besides a few absent-minded yuks in the middle of your workday?

    As Forbes wrote,

    Tucker and former Onion Sports executive producer (act like you’re not impressed) and The Kicker general manager Grant Jones came to two conclusions:

    1. Existing sports media isn’t funny enough.

    2. Existing comedy outlets fail to engage the world of sports.

    ... The Kicker seeks to connect the worlds of sports and comedy on a more consistent basis by leveraging the combined street cred of seasoned comedy writers and big-name pro athletes and producing content that taps into fans’ emotions­.

    “The Kicker provides brands with a unique way to create an authentic dialogue with passionate sports fans, using customized programming and relevant, high-quality comedy content," Jones said in a statement, via Mashable. "We will be building an audience that is young and digitally savvy, attracting hardcore and more casual sports fans."

    As Tucker joked about, there are indeed plenty of websites out there. In order to make its mark, the Kicker will need to continue to bring in the star power while, more importantly, churning out the funny.

    H/T Variety | Screengrab via The Kicker/YouTube


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    Stephen Colbert is more than ready to conquer another fandom with his nerd cred.

    He’s seen the new trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and like everyone else, he’s absolutely thrilled about seeing it in December. But because his good friend J.J. Abrams won’t tell him anything about it, he tries to guess the entire plot on his own.

    It’s vague enough to hold water against everything we’re not prepared for, with plenty of wiggle room in the very likely case that he’s wrong. We like it.

    And don’t worry, Colbert. We’ve only seen nearly four minutes of footage to date, so you’ll still be able to enjoy it, "spoilers" and all.

    Screengrab via The Late Show with Stephen Colbert/YouTube


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    A plus side of horror comedies: Nearly all of them are worth watching, even the ones that are considered “bad” by conventional standards. In fact, the only truly “bad” ones are those which commit the ultimate cinematic sins: They’re boring. 

    Luckily, we’ve vetted the horror comedies streaming on Netflix for you, and we’ve found nine films that range from being amazingly incoherent to genuinely great. We think you'll find at least one that’s a perfect fit for you.

    1) Grabbers (2013)

    Neither the “horror” nor “comedy” label could be left out of describing Grabbers. The plot involves a remote Irish shoreline village that must survive a stormy night of invading squid monsters, which survive solely on blood and water. 

    They suck people’s blood through whip-like tongues, but here’s the catch: Alcohol blocks the blood-sucking, because it's poisonous to them. This means that surviving the beasts (or at least the smaller, more common ones) requires that a .2 BAC is maintained, which results in the entire village gathering in its only pub to stay extremely shitfaced. They don’t even know about the squid monsters—they’re just told that a celebration of sorts is happening—and the entire town gathers at the pub, anyway. 

    It’s bit like Jaws meets Slither. The giant squid creatures are, despite being CGI, quite scary and well done. (It’s actually quite exciting for an independent film to have CGI this good.) The drunken townspeople are quite hilarious, but you've probably already guessed that. 

    Don't be fooled by the marketing materials: This is not a careless SyFy Channel production. It's a legitimately good movie, which also happens to be odd (think Bubba Ho-tep).

    2) Housebound (2014)

    New Zealand’s Housebound’s comedic aspects are certainly dark but nonetheless present. If you saw the amazing You’re Next in theaters, and you were the only person laughing at the deaths, you’ll get along swimmingly with Housebound.

    The film begins with the New Zealand version of young Winona Ryder attempting to steal an ATM and fucking it all up by getting her getaway car stuck in a parking lot. She’s sentenced to eight months of house arrest with her mother and stepfather (whom she doesn't really know), rather than facing a minimum of 15 years in prison. 

    There’s a lot of weirdness in Housebound, and it all answers one question: Is society’s view of a person’s normalcy actually worth anything, in the grand scheme of things? Everybody in Housebound is odd, but their oddness has no effect on their moral compass. 

    The tone is a nice throwback to the dark and disgusting comedies of Peter Jackson’s early filmography; indeed, he’s actually a fan of the film. New Line Execs, unfortunately, are also fans: They’ve planned a U.S. remake for 2016, and they feel that writer/director Gerard Johnstone is worth keeping an eye on.

    Inevitably, the original will disappear from Netflix in favor of diverting all possible attention to the U.S. remake, which will most likely be a tone-deaf, overly blue-tinted mockery of the original film. It currently holds a 92 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, which is not a bad rating for a horror film or a comedy film, but an absolute miracle for a film that’s both of those genres.

    3) The Coed and the Zombie Stoner (2014)

    This looks like it might be a Skinemax flick, where a plot exists solely to break up the softcore porn scenes in which a male humps a female’s general torso area, and then they both sigh as the scene fades to black after about four minutes of synthesizers and saxophones. Thankfully, it’s not. 

    The humor is corny, the acting is over-the-top, but that’s OK: The corny humor and over-the-top-acting combines with extremely bizarre takes on college movie stereotypes, to create something that’s, at the very least, consistently entertaining. The characters manage to be simultaneously completely stereotypical and yet entirely unique. For instance: Our protagonist is a scientist at a college. She’s a student, but is always shown working in a science lab—with a lab coat and a badge and all that jazz—conducting experiments and creating new formulas with a freedom that’s hopefully not allotted to any undergrad student at any actual college. 

    So, she’s a stereotypical scientist and also a student who belongs to an extremely snooty sorority that she takes very seriously. Most of the characters are Frankensteined together like this: It’s like the screenplay was written on software that allows you to to right click on any characters’ name, and pick a stereotype to add to all their actions and lines.

    The plot is every bit as insane as the characters are. When a sorority girl offers a zombie a dildo within the movie’s first three minutes, you can rest assured that the plot will be a memorable one. 

    As icing on the cake, the technobabble—of which there is a lot—resembles the utterings of a fevered bum who’s attempting to explain Bitcoin. 

    Somehow, though, it all works. It’s aware of its silliness, which is often a recipe for disaster (see: Robert Rodriguez movies), but the movie’s heart and earnest (and usually successful) desire to entertain its audience keeps it fun from start to finish.

    4) All Cheerleaders Die (2013)

    Fans of weird movies will be pleasantly surprised by All Cheerleaders Die. This is, hands down, the weirdest movie in this roundup (and this is a roundup that includes the aforementioned The Coed and the Zombie Stoner and a movie about an ass demon). It’s both incredibly stupid and subversively smart, and that’s a combination that never fails to amaze.

    The plot: Some cheerleaders crash their car in a creek, and they all die. Luckily, the newest cheerleader was friends with a slightly younger Wiccan girl, who happens to be standing by the creek when the car crashes. She utters a phrase, she tosses out some crystals—which light up and enter the wounds of all the dead people who were somehow pulled onto dry land from the car—and they all come back to life. (There’s also a full moon involved, but that seems to just be a coincidence.) 

    In life, the four girls all engaged in mean-spirited gossip toward each other, and were awful to everybody. Once dead, though, they bond together in their situation (ultimately caused by one man, who is a major asshole). The existence of the dead-alive cheerleaders both heralds the film’s second act, and also marks the place where the plot/mystical rules/everything else stops making any sense whatsoever. 

     The Wiccan girl’s crystals seem to have millions of uses—they fly into other people’s heads and kill them, and if another person digs one out of a cheerleader and swallows it, they gain random powers (and without a full moon, or a spell, or anything special involved at all…). The word count needed to adequately explain the plot’s stupidity would be irrationally high, so I’ll just sum up the whole shebang with this: It really is so, so stupid, and we also highly recommend watching it.  

    For a movie so centered on the negative effects that a patriarchal environment can have on females’ relationships with each other—which is a rich and deep topic to explore—it’s so unbelievably nonsensical that the subtext is replaced in the viewer's mind with What the fuck is happening right now?  

    Is this movie good? No. But is it special? Absolutely—and that’s the most important thing that a movie can be.

    5) Zombeavers (2014)

    What can you really say about Zombeavers? It’s named Zombeavers, for fuck’s sake, which is a rare example of a film’s title putting a near-perfect vision of it inside your head. Consider this simple list of facts about the movie:

    • Bill Burr and a heavily disguised John Mayer (yes, that John Mayer) play truckers—Joseph and Luke, respectively—who flawlessly improvise all their lines in the movie’s opening scene. From the outtakes.

    • There are a lot of beaver puns. A LOT. OF BEAVER PUNS.

    • A dick is bitten off.

    • The effects are almost (if not entirely) all practical, and the zombeavers are all puppets, so they’re all fucking awesome.

    • An undeniably feminist theme is sown throughout the movie: Female characters are not specifically punished for sexual indiscretions, and everything the men do results in utter disaster.

    • A dude sacrifices a dog, who resembles the really cute one from Frasier, to distract the zombeavers.

    • We mentioned the large amount of puppet beavers, right? And that they’re zombies? OK—just wanted to make sure.

    If you got through those bullet points without an urge to see this movie, we don’t know what to tell you.

    That said—even though the bullet points make it sound cool—we can’t promise that you won’t think Zombeavers is shit, because we think it might actually be a turd painted in gold (and in puppets, and also gore), but we really don’t care, just as long as it’s shiny.

    6) Re-Animator (1985)

    Do you like any of Peter Jackson’s horror films? Does practical gore fill you with awe? If so, watch Re-Animator. Then again, if you’ve made it this far into this roundup, you’ve probably already seen Re-Animator at least three times. 

    7) Bad Milo! (2013)

    When a movie is about a stress-induced, infant-sized monster growing inside of Ken Marino’s ass that climbs out and starts killing people, it’s already a winner for its plot description alone. Bad Milo! doesn’t rest on its plot’s laurels, though: It goes above and beyond by also being a legitimately well-made film, with far more heart than you’d expect from a movie with several scenes of a disfigured yard gnome climbing in/out of a butthole. 

    Milo himself—the creature living in Ken Marino’s ass—is designed with an incredible range of expression (his face had its own puppeteer). Trust us: Before the credits roll, you’ll be scared, disgusted, saddened, and emotionally moved by Milo. Like E.T., Milo was created with extraordinary practical effects, with the main difference between the two creatures being that Milo is—brace yourself—way cooler than E.T. (and we will only revisit that fact if E.T. gets a sequel in which he lives inside of somebody’s ass). 

    Bad Milo! is very good: The actors are great, it’s shot well, the narrative keeps your brain from drifting, and there are scenes between Milo (the Ass Demon) and its host/creator/Ken Marino which hint at a version of this film with humor so black that it absorbed the paint from your walls, and had a tone that never be described as goofy.

    As it stands, it’s a goofy story that’s played with a straight awareness of its own camp factor, but it’s still loads of fun to watch and shows an occasional flash of brilliance.

    8) Tucker & Dale vs. Evil (2010)

    This film is a piece of art. That is an irrefutable fact.

    The story follows harmless, slapstick-drenched hillbillies who scare a group of stereotypical, drunken teens on a debauched retreat in the woods. It spirals into a series of tragic events that are as ridiculous as they are tragically needless. The laugh-out-loud dynamic between the two good-hearted but misunderstood hillbillies, portrayed by Alan Tudyk and Tyler Labine, results in more belly laughs than most straight-up comedies released, and the horror is biting. Its thesis is that the greatest villain out there is bigger than any single, physical body, but is rather a combination of  fear, distrust, and a lack of empathy.

    If you haven’t seen Tucker & Dale yet, it’s best if you simply trust us on its quality, and watch it with a less-than-usual amount of knowledge of the film when you dive into it. The film’s brilliance, however, would still entertain you if you already knew the plot in great detail before seeing it. It plays like an extremely gory take on Shakespearean farces, with each view of the film yielding a greater understanding of the emotionally charged breakdowns in a communication that are plaguing society as a whole. 

    You know what? We're going to throw down the fucking gauntlet: This movie’s deconstruction of the genre, which is accomplished while still managing to be an awesome genre entry, is on par with Cabin in the Woods. It’s just that good.

    9) Dead Snow 2: Red vs. Dead (2014)

    The first Dead Snow had a lot of potential, and it had some truly wonderful moments. It was stretched thin, though; Nazi zombie mania hit the world with such force that Dead Snow needed to be made fast. According to this list of Nazi zombie films, there were five films about Nazis-turned-zombies in the 31 years between 1977 and 2008. There were eight made in the six years that followed.

    Martin Starr gets a lot of airtime in Dead Snow 2. You might know Starr as Bill in Freaks and Geeks, Joel from Adventureland, or Roman from Party Down (he was the nerdy guy in all of them). Starr seems to be fairly picky with his projects, and his face on the screen is an immediately good omen for this sequel.

    Director Tommy Wirkola does justice to his Sam Raimi obsession with this movie. The violence is creative, mostly practical, and often disgusting. The plot (which was something the original film didn’t really have) is completely convoluted, but in such a great way: The original’s lone survivor, Martin, has the arm of that film’s villain zombie sewn onto the place where he’d cut off his own arm in the first film. This gives him a possessed arm that can throw bodies immense distances. He learns to control it through techniques that Wirkola wisely decides don’t need to be explained, and he eventually learns that slamming his possessed fist on the ground below has a weird effect: It brings all the dead people in his proximity back to life.

    Of course, the villain is doing this, too, so the film actually finds a way to remake World War II with zombies. It’s an arms race (hah!) between good and evil.

    It’s everything that the original film failed to be. If you were severely disappointed in Dead Snow, please give the sequel a chance. After the first viewing, you might not be able to think anything other than How is this so good?

    Screengrab via Movie Trailer Graveyard/Youtube


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  • 10/29/15--11:15: Which Golden Ghoul are you?
  • Forget about trying to decide which Golden Girl you are. Which Golden Ghoul are you? 

    The ladies of YouTube channel Creature have assembled a ghastly Golden Girls parody for their latest video—complete with those fake "Halloween" names in the opening credits—for a look at Sophia, Rose, Blanche, and Dorothy in the costumes that match their personalities. They're all pretty spot-on, but c'mon, Sophia is still the best. 

    Charley Feldman, the parody's writer, also plays the part of Estelle "Wolf Man" Getty, aka Sophia. Creature, she says, strives to be a "hub for female-produced comedy and geekery," and this fiendish homage to a show about female friendship is also a testament to its influence. 

    "I can't speak for the greater Internet, but we know as women trying to break into the comedy world at large, we have always seen The Golden Girls as an example that this dream is possible," Feldman said. "Not only right now when people say you have to strike because you're young, but at any age. Women are funny. Their lives are rich with story and worth exploring. Sure, Netflix has Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, but the general landscape isn't kind to female comedians past their 'last fuckable day.' The Golden Girls is proof that that cliche is ridiculous, and that was in the late '80s/early '90s! It's almost as if the show shouldn't have existed, but it did, and modern TV needs to learn from it because it clearly holds up and people still love it! Partially for those reasons, and also because it's just so damn good and relatable." 

    This parody offers Halloween costume ideas and an update on the theme song. Thirty years later, The Golden Girls remains timeless.  

    H/T IAF | Screengrab via Creature/YouTube 


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    So it turns out that your useless teenage son is actually on to something. 

    His door closed and blinds pulled shut as you trudge out to work, and then planted like a hairy bag of meat in front of American Pickers upon your return: “Inaction! Procrastination! Indolence! Apathy!” you shout internally at his gormless face.

    But think about it. Is what he’s doing­—practically nothing—really any less worthwhile than the spreadsheets and coffee you made in the office today? Is his 3pm meeting with RedTube any less important than yours with HR, especially on a sensory level?

    British writer Steven Poole suggests not. Or that at the very least we need to think a little more about the arbitrary distinction placed upon certain activities through the use of the term “work.” 

    “Any kind of activity that isn’t work is undervalued,” he says, “and the way we say that we do value something is to call it work, even if it’s not actually part of our job.”

    And this terminology feeds into our understanding of what a productive day or person may be. While few would call time with friends or relaxing entirely worthless, nor is it work, so a day at the beach with your pals would never be determined a “productive” one.

    This thought—that there is unappreciated value within inaction and leisure—is the starting point for Itai Keshet’s fascinating webseries Sluggish. The first season, four meditations around this theme, looks to pinpoint the “upsides of wasting your time.”

    The idea for the series came out of Keshet’s conversation with artist Ignacio Uriarte, who would eventually become the subject for the second episode. Uriarte describes his art as doing “office work without the work”—creating repetitive drawings with Bic pens, mazes in Excel, a 100-page Word document, and a human voice homage to what he calls the soundtrack of the office, the typewriter. That piece, a 21-minute procession through the sounds of almost a century of different models “recited” by Police Academy’s Michael Winslow is to be admired for its completeness, if not, perhaps, its gratification.

    While initially it may seem that Uriarte’s art is an attempt to inflate the value of hum-drum office production, giving it credence by placing it within an artistic context, it does the opposite. What emerges is a restricted world, illustrated by Uriarte with readily available office supplies, where the actions of typing, writing, graphing, or recording are mimicked in a hollow display of “productiveness.”

    “I thought—hmm, there are so many other interesting things to say about this same topic from different perspectives, the idea of productivity being the ultimate virtue of the time,” Keshet tells the Daily Dot via email. “So that led to the idea of making several videos as a series.”

    And so followed a conversation with Gavin Pretor-Pinney, a cloud enthusiast and most fascinating of all a discussion on action bias—concerning situations when it is hard not to do something even when you’re making things worse—with Professor Michael Bar-Eli. The episode is excellent in its explanation on the importance of absence and inaction, citing the futility of changing lanes in traffic and trading just because you haven’t for a while. And its centerpiece, Bar-Eli’s paper that revealed that soccer goalkeepers would be better served standing in the middle and not diving to either side during penalty kicks, is worth perusing on its own.  

    Keshet confirms that the second series is underway and will contain a similar multi-disciplinary approach to a single, intriguing topic. 

    “The basic idea is that if you are interested in art or science or sport you might come across just one of the stories because that's where you hang out online but if you are interested enough hopefully you can watch the rest of the videos and that will take you somewhere else” says Keshet. “It sounds like a trivial idea but you actually don't see this kind of format that often, except in podcasts.”

    It’s an excellent series—thoughtful, contemplative, and nicely edited. It’s the sort of thing that others have attempted but without an ounce of the intelligence. Whether you’re convinced by its argument that there is value to frittering away your time watching webseries and online videos, or not, Sluggish is certainly worthwhile in its own right.

    Screengrab via Sluggish/Vimeo


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    Justin Bieber's fourth album, Purpose, drops Nov. 13. If you check his Instagram today you'll get a sneak peek at the track listing. 

    Bieber had a mural painted for each song by a different artist in a different city around the world, and then uploaded all of the photos to Instagram in one big posting spree.

    Each pic includes info on where the mural is located plus the name of the artist who made it, and Bieber is hoping Beliebers will have fun tracking down the art. 

    "Find the murals in those cities," he said in a caption. "Thanks to all the artists who stepped up."

    Before you start hunting, though, here's the official track listing:

    1. "Mark My Words"
    2. "I'll Show You"3. "What Do You Mean?"
    4. "Sorry"5. "Love Yourself"
    6. "Company"7. "No Pressure," feat. Big Sean
    8. "No Sense," feat. Travi$ Scott9. "The Feeling," feat. Halsey
    10. "Life Is Worth Living"11. "Where Are Ü Now," feat. Jack Ü
    12. "Children"13. "Purpose"
    14. "Been You"15. "Get Used to Me"
    16. "We Are," feat. Nas17. "Trust"
    18. "All in It"
    19. "What Do You Mean? (Remix)," feat. Ariana Grande

    And here are the photos of all 18 murals: 

    1)

    2)

    3)

    4)

    5)

    6)

    7)

    8)

    9)

    10)

    11)

    12)

    13)

    14)

    15)

    16)

    17)

    18)

    Purpose is available for preorder on iTunes.

    H/T Vulture | Screengrab via Justin Bieber/Instagram


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    This week the calendar gave us a gift: the opportunity to post a pre-Halloween #tbt photo. Taylor Swift took advantage by posting a picture of herself in costume as a kid.

    Swift looks adorable as the yellow Teletubby, Laa-Laa, but that didn't stop Twitter from getting some hipster mermaid vibes from the caption. Specifically, "but it's before Teletubbies got huge." 

    Being ahead of the curve is tough, but it seems like Swift made it through alright. And with some fire #tbt fodder to boot. 

    H/T E! Online | Screengrab via Taylor Swift/Instagram


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    Harrison Ford got into the Halloween and Star Wars spirit when he dressed up as a hotdog to chat with Jimmy Kimmel.

    Ford discussed both his plane crash and the ankle injury he sustained on the set of The Force Awakens. According to the official report obtained by Kimmel, police were called to London's Pinewood Studios to aid a 71-year-old man who was injured by a garage door.

    Garage door, Millennium Falcon...same thing, right?

    While Ford seemed as excited as the rest of us about The Force Awakens, he can’t say anything about it—although he wouldn’t even if he could, because why ruin it for everyone?

    Like many actors, Ford has perfected the art of saying a lot while revealing nothing in between heaping praise on the new cast. Remember, he wouldn’t be sitting there in a hotdog costume if he didn’t think the film was any good.

    And of course he knows why Luke Skywalker isn’t on The Force Awakens poster, but he's not going to tell us a thing about it.

    With Ford on hand, it was a Star Wars affair all around. Kimmel dressed up like Princess Leia, Guillermo was Yoda, and even the band got into it. We never thought we’d see the day when Darth Vader rocked out, either.

    Screengrab via Jimmy Kimmel Live/YouTube


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    Not quite in the Halloween spirit yet? The gory bonus footage from Rihanna's "Bitch Better Have My Money" video might help set the mood.

    Queen Rih has released what she's calling the "missing chapter" to her now-iconic music video, and it's only available to watch in her new 360-degree POV virtual reality app.  

    The bonus video takes a deeper dive into just why exactly her accountant should have known better than to mess with Rih in the first place. Most of it is shot from his POV as he's strapped to a chair in a basement. 

    The app is available for Google Play and Samsung Gear right now, with an Apple version still on the way. But if you don't have a VR headset, Rihanna fans have tweeted out videos in 30-second chunks for your viewing pleasure. Just be warned that everything is very NSFW. 

    Don't act like you forgot.

    H/T Vulture | Screengrab via Rihanna/YouTube

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