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Heidi Klum’s Alien Costume Was So Good, She Should Be Chestbursting With Pride

Video by Angelo Fabara

H.R. Giger is having somewhat of a moment lately, as a new documentary about his Oscar-winning visual effects work, Memory: the Origins of Alien, is now streaming, and a tribute exhibition curated by outré auteur Harmony Korine, “Birth Machine Baby,” is set to open at Gagosian Gallery on Nov. 5. And then there’s this: Last night, supermodel Heidi Klum slithered into her annual Halloween party looking very much like the Swiss sci-fi surrealist’s iconic alien. More →

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7 Years After Sandy, Rockaway Is Getting Its Handball Courts Back

A chess table and section of boardwalk uprooted by Sandy. (Photos: Daniel Maurer)

Seven years after Hurricane Sandy tore more than half of Rockaway Beach’s 5.5-mile boardwalk off its stanchions, the waterfront is thriving again. Last year, Rockaway Beach welcomed a staggering 5.5 million visitors. But millennials enthralled by the cornucopia of ceviche, quinoa arepas, and kombucha on tap may not have noticed something missing: the handball courts ripped up by the superstorm in 2012 still haven’t returned to Beach 105th Street. More →

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IDNYC Benefits Expand to The Whitney, The Shed, National Sawdust, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and More

City ID holders are about to get a whole lot more worldly. The city announced today that next year, new partners in its IDNYC program will include the Whitney Museum, the Apollo Theater, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Bargemusic, and a couple of cutting-edge music and performance venues: National Sawdust in Williamsburg and The Shed in Hudson Yards. 

Asked for details about the benefits, a spokesperson for the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs promised them in the coming weeks. A spokesperson for National Sawdust told Bedford + Bowery that IDNYC card holders will be eligible for a Venture membership granting half-price tickets to almost every show at the new-music venue. Bargemusic, which hosts chamber-music concerts on a floating barge in Dumbo, told us that it would extend its seniors discount (typically $5 off of a $35 ticket) to IDNYC holders. Jazz at Lincoln Center said it’s still working with the city to determine which benefits it will provide. We’ve reached out to the other cultural venues as well and will let you know if they share any specifics. 

Current benefits from partners that will return in 2020 include a Level 1 membership at Brooklyn Academy of Music (advance access to tickets, 50 percent off same-day tickets and more), membership at MoMA (free admission to the museum’s galleries and to MoMA PS1 as well as free same-day film tickets), a “Friends” membership at Carnegie Hall (half-price tickets on select performances), and membership at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (free admission for the cardholder and accompanied children). 

Again, it’s uncertain what some of the new partners will offer. Currently, the Whitney’s lowest tier of paid membership offers unlimited express and free admission for members, half-price general admission tickets for their guests, access to preview days for major exhibitions, and discounts of up to 20 percent at the museum gift shop. The Shed’s lowest tier offers 24-hour advance ticket access. Jazz at Lincoln Center membership offers exclusive ticket discounts and pre-sale access. 

In addition to the new partners, the city announced that starting Dec. 2, residents whose cards are expiring in less than 60 days, or whose cards have been expired for less than six months, can go online to renew and make changes such as gender designation. (In January, the city announced that in addition to the traditional M and F designations, it was adding an X option for transgender, non-binary and nonconforming residents.) They’ll receive a redesigned card featuring the Statue of Liberty in the background. 

The first set of IDNYC cards, issued in 2015, are set to expire in January 2020. There are currently over 1.3 million cardholders, according to the city. 

Update: This article was updated after publication with the specific benefits offered by National Sawdust and Bargemusic.

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‘Tell Me Who I Am’ Is a Disturbing Doc About Family Dysfunction, But There’s a Problem With Its Startling Reveal

Marcus and Alex Lewis in Tell Me Who I Am, directed by Ed Perkins. (Image courtesy of Netflix)

Tell Me Who I Am is one of the most disturbing documentaries about family dysfunction since Capturing the Friedmans— all the more so because it unfolds like a psychological thriller. But there’s something about the film’s big reveal that won’t be readily apparent to viewers who haven’t read the extraordinary book that preceded it. (This article contains spoilers and is written for those who’ve already watched the film.) More →

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Two New Docs Go Deep Inside the Philippines’ Murderous War on Drugs

The Nightcrawlers.

“When I smoke meth, I feel nothing when I kill.” The irony is thick as a man paid to execute drug users exhales a cloud of shabu smoke in The Nightcrawlers. The National Geographic documentary, which last week won a special jury prize for courageous filmmaking at the Hamptons International Film Festival and next month will play at DOC NYC, is named after the photojournalists who’ve documented thousands of extrajudicial killings in the Philippines, said to be ordered by police at the encouragement of strongman president Roberto Duterte. The film, directed by Alexander A. Mora, follows these photographers while also riding along with the masked vigilantes who brazenly gun down users and pushers in the streets of Manila. More →

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Bikram Choudhury Is ‘Not Happy’ With a Chilling New Doc About the Hot Yoga Guru

As I waited in line for the US premiere of Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator at the Hamptons International Film Festival on Saturday, I was reading The Program, Toni Natalie’s new memoir about surviving NXIVM. It was a funny coincidence, given the clear similarities between hot yoga pioneer Bikram Choudhury and New Age cult leader Keith Raniere. Both are charismatic manipulators who offered healing and empowerment to their vulnerable, mostly female followers, only to psychologically, financially, and sexually prey on their devotees while raining ruin down on anyone who threatened their empire. But while Raniere has been convicted of racketeering and sex trafficking (his sentencing date was announced earlier this month), Choudhury is still teaching his trademark brand of hot yoga to starstruck students– a fact that is not lost on filmmaker Eva Orner. More →

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In a New Doc, Imelda Marcos’s Son Is a Shoe-In For Vice President

Early in Lauren Greenfield’s new documentary about Imelda Marcos, The Kingmaker, there’s a photo of the disgraced former First Lady of the Philippines mingling with one of the many beautiful people in her orbit at the time: Donald and Ivanka Trump. This is our cue that the story of the Iron Butterfly remains relevant decades after she and her husband Ferdinand packed their diamonds into a bunch of diapers and fled the Philippines amidst the People Power Revolution.  More →

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The Comic Geniuses Behind ‘On Cinema’ Have an Unmade Murder Mystery Lying Around Somewhere

Tim Heidecker and Gregg Turkington’s Adult Swim show, On Cinema at the Cinema, has birthed so many wacky offshoots– a podcast! a spinoff show! a rock band and EDM remix! Oscar specials! live tours! Twitter battles! fan recaps!– that it’s hard to believe its creators haven’t explored every possible outlet for their shtick, which can best be described as Siskel and Ebert on crack (or rather, on Dr. San’s Nutritional Vaping Technology). But last night, after the opening of their first feature film, they revealed that the beginnings of an earlier On Cinema movie are lying around somewhere. More →