Devin Gordon

Stories by Devin Gordon

  • At The Head Of Her Class

    Jena Malone is doing everything wrong. Teenage starlets--like, say, Hilary Duff or Lindsay Lohan or the two-headed Olsen monster--are expected to behave a certain way. They're supposed to dress skimpily, party recklessly, canoodle openly and feud viciously. At the very least, they should live in Los Angeles. Malone, who's 19, lives in Lake Tahoe, Nev. "I love it here," she says. "It's very important to me to have all four seasons." See, teenage starlets are supposed to think "the four seasons" is a hotel. Malone also doesn't have a personal publicist (huh?), which may explain her bizarre conduct during her NEWSWEEK interview. First, she called 15 minutes early. Then, when the call went to voice mail, she left her actual phone number. Somebody really needs to sit this girl down.Craziest of all, though, are Malone's career choices. Instead of signing up for disposable teen flicks, she's delivered gutsy performances in a series of challenging indies, including 2002's "The Dangerous...
  • Rock's Big Bounce

    Have you ever been outside in 106-degree heat? The air is crushing. You dehydrate instantly. You fantasize about cooler places, like Arizona. In 106-degree heat, the average indie-rock fan--thin, brittle, white as chalk--will spontaneously burst into flames. So it was a shock when 60,000 of them braved the elements recently for the Coachella music festival outside Los Angeles. Two days, all outdoors, all to see 82 bands with names that sound like parodies of band names: Death Cab for Cutie, Broken Social Scene, the Flaming Lips and one that could've been the festival's motto:... And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead. (Yes, that's a real band. And yes, they're good.) Two years ago, the indie-rock scene was sputtering. Coachella was a quirky, decently attended event. And now? "I had no idea it was such a big deal," says Death Cab frontman Ben Gibbard. "We were touring in Japan beforehand and people kept telling us they were flying from Japan to be at Coachella."After a grim decade...
  • Olympics: Thorpedo--Still Afloat

    The Thorpedo has sunk one of his own. After a false-start disqualification at Australia's Olympic trials in March, swimming phenom Ian Thorpe, who won three gold medals at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, appeared to be foiled in his quest to defend his victory in the 400-meter freestyle, his best event, at the Athens Games in August. His blunder allowed second-place finisher Craig Stevens to snag an Olympics berth. It also sparked a firestorm in Oz, where swimming is next to godliness and where Thorpe is, accordingly, God. It got so bad that Stevens claimed he was taking sleeping pills to cope with the stress. Maybe he can sleep easier now. Last Monday Stevens went on Aussie TV to announce his withdrawal from the 400. The next day Thorpe was offered the open spot.Was Stevens just being a loyal teammate? Or did withering pressure from the Aussie press and swimming world leave him with no choice? For once it seems no one is crying foul--including Stevens. Asked on TV if Thorpe had put...
  • HERE COMES YOUR BAND

    The late Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain once said of "Smells Like Teen Spirit," the most famous song he ever wrote, "Basically, I was trying to rip off the Pixies." A few months after Cobain copped to the theft, the Pixies broke up. (Blew apart is more like it: frontman Black Francis, a.k.a. Charles Thompson, notoriously fired his fed-up band mates via fax.) That was 1992. I was 15 years old, and the bastards were gone before I ever got to see them play. But on Tuesday night, two days after Easter, all was forgiven: the Pixies rose from the grave, playing their first show in a dozen years at the Fine Line Music Cafe in Minneapolis. The gig sold out in four minutes. On eBay, bids for a single ticket peaked at $615, more than 20 times face value. "I've been waiting 5,359 days for this," said Ira Mitchell, 32, as the lights dimmed. Ira's friend Art Sesma paid such a motherlode for his ticket that he's afraid to tell his wife.If Minneapolis seems like a remote locale for a rock-and-roll...
  • THE GOOD GIRL

    Movie stars don't do bicycles. Once you achieve a certain level of stature in Hollywood, you get ferried around sets in a golf cart or a limo with tinted windows. Jennifer Garner may be a leading lady soon--on April 23 she'll headline a film for the first time in "13 Going on 30," an update of Tom Hanks's "Big" for the Y-chromosome set--but she'll never give up her bike. It's cotton-candy pink with bells on both handlebars--a birthday gift from writer J. J. Abrams, who hired her to star in ABC's sexy spy drama "Alias." "I keep meaning to get streamers for it," Garner says. Today, the 31-year-old actress is trying to pedal slowly so a reporter can keep pace on foot as she makes her way across the Disney studio lot to the "Alias" soundstage. "Sometimes we're here really early and the only other people around seem grumpy. So I'll ride by and go--." She rings her bell. Garner giggles. "I don't think it amuses anyone but me.""13 Going on 30" should tickle a few more funny bones. Garner...
  • NEWSMAKERS

    Q&A: David CarradineAfter three years of walking the earth in the early '70s TV series "Kung Fu," David Carradine vanished into a straight-to-video career. Then Quentin Tarantino called. Now he's the titular villain in the director's two-volume action opus "Kill Bill." Carradine, 67, spoke about the journey with NEWSWEEK's Devin Gordon.We never see Bill in "Vol. 1"--we just hear his voice. When did you find out you'd been cut?It was kind of in passing. I was at the studio redoing some dialogue and Quentin just said, "Oh, by the way, you're not in 'Volume 1'." [Laughs] He wasn't even lookin' at me.And you felt...?Well, I felt a jolt, I'll tell ya that. But then I realized it would work. I'm a mystery in the first half and I dominate the second. That's cool.Tarantino wrote the part just for you--but then gave it to Warren Beatty.Well, it wasn't a betrayal because, let's face it, you've got to get a deal for your movie. Warren's a big draw.What happened to him?I don't really think...
  • SPORTS: SHALL WE DANCE?

    If it's March, it must be college-hoops time--that manic moment in the year when grown men blow an entire day of work poring over a single piece of paper covered with words like "Zona," "GaTech" and "Mizzou." Last year's NCAA tournament foiled even the sharpest prognosticators because a single player, Syracuse freshman phenom Carmelo Anthony, carried his team to the title. Will there be another Melo this year? No way. But these unheralded studs could make some noise. They might not win it all, but they could help you win that office pool. Finally.Ryan Gomes, PROVIDENCE. This 6-foot-7, do-it-all forward can shoot threes, grab rebounds (9.5 per game) and end a game at the foul line (88.7 percent).Lawrence Roberts, MISSISSIPPI STATE. The perennially overlooked Bulldogs are led by this stone-faced 6-foot-9 junior banger. He scored in double figures in all but two games this year.Nick Welch, AIR FORCE. Here's your upset special. Led by this heady forward, the Falcons run the fabled...
  • SYNAPSE CRACKLE POP

    One of the drawbacks of being a movie actor is that you might someday have to watch yourself run. Jim Carrey is facing such a moment right now, and he's not proud of what he sees. The actor and his costar Kate Winslet are crunched around a monitor in New York's Grand Central Terminal watching playback of Carrey dashing across the main concourse. "Man," says Carrey, "I run like such a geek. It's because I'm Canadian. I look like a goose." Fortunately, it's nearly midnight, so only a few dozen commuters witnessed his graceless gallop. But "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," Carrey's new film, will eventually show in thousands of theaters. So his director, Frenchman Michel Gondry, who probably also runs funny, suggests another take. As Carrey rushes off, a traveler stops him for directions to a train. Later, he's asked what he said. Carrey puffs himself up, mock-theatrically: "Out of my way! I'm in the movies!"He's never been in one quite like this. "Eternal Sunshine" tells the...
  • MOVIES: HERE'S THE 'ANTI-CHRIST'

    Call the Broken Lizard Comedy Troupe goofy. Call them low-brow. But don't call them cowards. Each weekend in Hollywood is a box-office grudge match, but this coming weekend is about as strange as it gets. In one corner: Mel Gibson's brutal chronicle of Jesus' final hours, "The Passion of the Christ." And in the other, "Club Dread," an enjoyably daffy horror-comedy about drunken revelers marooned on an island resort with a killer. It's the latest movie from the five-man team behind 2003's cult hit "Super Troopers," and while it's nearly as gory as Gibson's epic, "Club Dread" is, to put it mildly, much, much funnier. "I kept saying we should market it as 'the anti-Christ movie,' but Fox didn't go for that," says Broken Lizard trouper Paul Soter. Though "The Passion" will likely win in the end, hope springs eternal. "We want to go around next week saying we're bigger than Jesus," Soter says. "Historically, that's always gone over really well, right?"The Broken Lizard boys met as...
  • Spoiling the Surprises

    It may come as shock to readers to learn that every once in a while--a very long, long while--journalists are wrong. Even entertainment journalists. Even NEWSWEEK entertainment journalists. Even this NEWSWEEK entertainment journalist. But it's true. And boy, did I serve up a whopper at Oscar time last year. In a piece I wrote about the 2003 field of nominees, I declared that the award ceremony itself would be a snore, chiefly because it was obvious who all the winners would be. Here, in all its numbskull glory, is what I wrote:"Even the 'upsets' will be boring. After all, is it really an upset if [best-actor nominee] Daniel Day-Lewis beats Jack Nicholson when everyone knows he's the only person who has a shot at the upset? Oh, I suppose Michael Caine could sneak in and win--a prospect that is so exciting I can barely type it. A polite Englishman winning his third Oscar. Wow. Crazy. Upsets are only exciting if someone truly comes out of left field to win, which hardly ever happens....
  • WHEN HETEROS ATTACK: A 'STRAIGHT PLAN FOR THE GAY

    Now here's a reality show we never saw coming. "Straight Plan for the Gay Man" is Comedy Central's cute, role-reversing spoof of Bravo's makeover hit, and there's one other major change: "Queer Eye" has five experts, while "Straight Plan" makes do with four. Poor Jai--he's so useless he didn't even get spoofed. (Maybe next time: Showtime is planning a show in which black men teach white guys how to be hip.) Each week the "Flab Four" help a gay man realize his dream of passing for a day as a hetero. Why any self-respecting gay man would have such a dream is unclear. In any case, the show's first patient is Jonathan, an effete fashionista who might be TV's tackiest gay man: one apartment wall is covered with collectible teacups so heinous that the guys' redecoration effort--bowling trophies and an oinking potato-chip dispenser--is an improvement.Like "Queer Eye," "Straight Plan" is fortunate to have a go-to jokester in its crew, the rotund "Appearance Guy," Billy Merritt. When the...
  • THE PLAYERS: FIVE AT THE TOP OF THE MOUNTAIN

    In case you haven't caught the latest efforts by the participants in our round table, here's what you're missing. And if you're really behind, a brief biography of each director.'The Return of the King': In the dazzling, impassioned finale of the Middle-earth trilogy, the reluctant leader Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) rises to confront a final assault by Sauron's evil army, while a pair of hobbits, Frodo and Sam (Elijah Wood and Sean Astin), continue their quest to destroy an all-powerful ring. New Zealand's Peter Jackson launched his career with ultragory horror flicks such as 1992's "Dead Alive." His critical breakthrough came in 1994 with the mesmerizing drama "Heavenly Creatures," starring newcomer Kate Winslet. Next up for Jackson: fulfilling a childhood dream by remaking "King Kong."'Lost in Translation': A warm whisper of a movie set in a Tokyo hotel, Sofia Coppola's unforgettable comedy is a snapshot of two people crossing paths at crossroads in their lives: a bewildered young...
  • SUNDANCE '04: NOW TERROR'S AT SEA

    So the "Blair Witch" directors got some actors lost in the woods and made creepy noises around their campsite. Big deal. In the history of "I dare you" filmmaking, it's possible that no movie has approached the insanity of writer-director Chris Kentis's 2004 Sundance Film Festival entry, "Open Water," about a scuba-diving couple stranded in shark-infested waters after their chartered boat leaves without them. Forget the trials of the "Blair Witch" cast: this movie is a 79-minute triple-dog-dare. Like its Sundance predecessor, "Open Water" had a microscopic budget. Kentis couldn't afford to build a mechanical shark, as in "Jaws," and he certainly couldn't afford computer-generated killers. So he did what any filmmaker-cum-sadomasochist would do: he dropped anchor 18 miles offshore in the Bahamas, dumped chum in the water and filmed the actors quaking as real, live sharks came calling. "It definitely got a little dicey at times," Kentis says."Open Water" is based on a true story, and...
  • HAPPY GO LARRY

    He is going to hate this piece. He hasn't read a word of it yet, obviously, but his ambivalence is in the air somehow. For example, there was the time he said, "I'm going to hate this piece you're doing now." It was June 2003. HBO had persuaded (OK, begged) Larry David to allow a NEWSWEEK reporter to spend two days with him on the set of "Curb Your Enthusiasm," the Emmy-nominated comedy series he writes and stars in. On the show, which began its ingenious fourth season on Sunday, David plays himself: the curmudgeonly, whiny, kvetchy and now fabulously wealthy cocreator of "Seinfeld." His declaration came during a break in shooting. "I just hate reading what I have to say. I find it boring. And I'm called a lot of names in these pieces that I don't really agree with--everything in the 'curmudgeon,' 'whiner,' 'kvetcher' family."Of course, David was smiling as he said all this. He's that rare breed of guy who's happiest when he's unhappy. Six months later, NEWSWEEK checked in with...
  • How 'The Matrix' Lost Its Mojo

    In November 2002, after spending four days with the main "Matrix" team in Los Angeles and two more with its visual effects crew in Alameda, Calif., I wrote a story for NEWSWEEK's Who's Next special report that marveled at the potential greatness of the forthcoming sequels, "The Matrix Reloaded" and "The Matrix Revolutions." I didn't actually view either of the entire films--it was too early for that, but I hung out with the costume designer, the production designer, the special-effects coordinator, the cinematographer, the sound editor, the actors, the producers, even the videogame creator. And everything they told me, everything showed me, was dazzling. I was the first journalist to see the delirious fight scene between Neo and the 100 Agent Smiths in "Reloaded" as well as the epic freeway chase that follows it--a pair of sequences that, no matter what you think of "Reloaded" overall, have spots reserved from them in the action-cinema pantheon. I listened to John Gaeta, the trilogy...
  • Guiding Actors Through Hell And Back

    Mexican filmmaker Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu is more articulate in his second language, English, than most people are in their first, but it's easy to make his fluency vanish. Just ask him which movie features the better Sean Penn performance--his new film, "21 Grams," or "Mystic River"? "Oh," he says, laughing, "I don't do this. I'm not... you have to say." Gonzalez Inarritu was faster on his feet the first time he spoke to Penn. Three years ago the actor called him at his home in Mexico City to tell him how much he loved his first movie, the Oscar-nominated "Amores Perros." "He said, 'Hi, this is Sean Penn'," Gonzalez Inarritu recalls, "and I said, 'Sure, and I'm Marlon Brando'."In conversation, the 40-year-old director is cheerful and inviting; his movies, to put it mildly, are not. Despite the success of "Amores Perros," Gonzalez Inarritu had planned to stay in Mexico to make "21 Grams," a spiritual sequel to his debut. He changed his mind when heavyweights like Penn began...
  • It's A Digital Life: Dvds For Everyone

    The sudden explosion of DVDs took many of us by surprise, which may explain why some consumers are still making curious choices for their home libraries. Why, exactly, is anyone buying the DVD version of "2 Fast 2 Furious"? Was once not enough? Of course, DVDs can be great gifts--if, to quote one of TIP SHEET's picks below, you choose wisely.Wronged Men & Notorious Women: Five Hitchcock Thrillers, 1935-1946 The best of Hitch's early black-and-whites--"The 39 Steps," "The Lady Vanishes," "Spellbound," "Notorious" and his best-picture winner "Rebecca"--in one set. ($124.95)BBC's The Office: The Complete First Season Yes, we know, there's never anything good on TV. This painfully funny satire of life in corporate hell is the exception that proves the rule. ($29.98)Scarface: Special Edition When you think about it, Brian De Palma's 1983 epic isn't a very good movie. So don't think about it. Just enjoy the blood, the excess, the Al Pacino overacting. ($26.98)Monty Python's The...
  • Meet The Titans Of Taste

    Paola AntonelliCURATOR, MUSEUM OF MODERN ARTHer criterion is simple: "I try to decide," says Paola Antonelli, curator of architecture and design at New York's MoMA, "whether the space an object occupies on Earth is well used." If that sounds like a high bar to clear, just look at what Antonelli is holding. And wearing. "Post-It notes are smart, beautiful and cheap. That's the apotheosis of great design," she says. "Yellow is an attention-getting color. And square is a classically rational shape."Since joining MoMA in 1994, the Italian-born Antonelli has emerged as a star in the design world. She has a lively eye and a gift for crystallizing ideas. "Just like people can tell good steak from bad, I want it to be the same with design," she says. Someone ought to write that down. Got a pen?Murray MossFOUNDER AND OWNER, MOSSWhen murray moss opened his Manhattan store nine years ago, he put a steel garbage can in the window to make a point: design is everywhere--and everything. Give him...
  • Dvds: No--Praise You, Spike

    For years, music-video directors have gotten a bum rap--they're all flash, no substance, and they grow up to become lousy movie directors. The trouble is, almost every truly innovative filmmaker these days breaks into the biz with music videos, so the rap is a bit like slagging a butterfly for starting out as a caterpillar. Worse, it kicks to the curb some of the best cinema made in the last decade: the music videos themselves. Now, finally, some of the masters are getting their due. Last week the first batch of Palm Pictures' "Directors Label" DVD series hit stores, anthologizing the short-form work of Spike Jonze, Michel Gondry and Chris Cunningham--the holy trinity of music-video directors.The Jonze DVD is surely the prize of the bunch. For the first time, the "Adaptation" director's hilarious, high-concept videos--including his man-on-fire clip for Wax's "California," the guerrilla galleria dance show for Fatboy Slim's "Praise You" and, of course, the coolest video ever made,...
  • Newsmakers

    Ready to RumbleLast month NEWSWEEK was keen to interview Liza Minnelli. She was filming a guest spot on a Fox sitcom, and a Broadway musical about her ex-husband Peter Allen was set to open. Was this not a Liza moment? Her publicist said no, but confirmed our radarlike journalistic instinct: "Life's great for her these days."And these days? Last week the gossip industry celebrated Christmas early when her husband, David Gest, sued her for domestic violence, accusing her of beating him five times in their 15-month marriage. Gest, whose court papers call him a "world renown" promoter, alleges that he now takes 11 painkillers a day. What would make it all better? Ten million dollars of Liza's money. Spousal abuse is no laughing matter, but even the most PC among us--imagining a vodka-powered Liza whacking Gest like a pinata--has to think, maybe just this once.Minnelli filed for divorce the next day. In a statement, she called his accusations "hurtful and without merit"; she'd hoped ...
  • Meet The Titans Of Taste

    The Philosopher KingWalking into Murray Moss's celebrated downtown Manhattan housewares store, moss, is like walking into a museum. There are pristine white walls and objects--from Delft pottery to designer toilet-paper holders--in locked glass cases. Name cards identify an item's maker and date of origin. Handrails keep visitors at a distance. do not touch signs are everywhere. (OK, most of them are on T shirts worn by the store's employees--a little retail-design humor, ha ha.) On the downstairs level, there's even a giant chair by Frank Gehry made of corrugated cardboard that appeared in the Guggenheim's retrospective on the famed architect--an actual museum piece. But then Moss slides open its case. "Wanna test it out?" he asks. "It's surprisingly comfortable." Try getting away with that at the Guggenheim.When Moss opened his store in SoHo nine years ago, he put a 1958 Bruno Munari steel garbage can in the window just to make a point to gallery-hopping passersby: design is...
  • Our Life As A House

    Living Room: Simply RedEd and Becky Fotheringham's 1926 farmhouse in Seattle's Phinney Ridge isn't big--about 1,750 square feet. And they're not rich. He's a freelance illustrator from Australia. She cooks, gardens and cares for their two kids, Anna, who's 5 years, 9 months old, and Joe, who turns 3 next month. She also lets Ed know when he's talking too much. In other words, they're normal. Yet their home is a design miracle: it's kid-friendly and effortlessly cool. Ed and Becky, please explain."Living with restrictions is good," says Ed, 38. "It forces you to be creative." The living room, with its picture windows overlooking the Olympic Mountains, is the social hub of the house. "The chairs are from Anthropologie and they're leather, so they're bulletproof," says Ed. "You can vomit on them and nothing'll happen." "That's nice, Ed," Becky calls from the kitchen. "Nice visual."Redoing This Old HouseThe Fotheringhams' game plan: buy small, think big. With housing prices soaring and...
  • Movies: A Woman On The Verge Of A Breakthrough

    Back in January, Patricia Clarkson got to be queen for a day. Actually, for about six days. At the 2003 Sundance Film Festival, Clarkson starred in just about every good movie in competition (OK, four), won a special jury prize for her work and spent the week as the toast of Park City, Utah. All the while, there was talk that she'd soon land an Oscar nod for Todd Haynes's 1950s melodrama "Far From Heaven." But Oscar never called, the Sundance festival ended and the 44-year-old actress with the strawberry hair and smoky voice had to turn in her crown and go back to lodging at Howard Johnson to keep her tiny movies on budget. Oh well. "Look, I'm not 25 anymore," Clarkson says cheerfully. "At this point, it was nice to be the queen of something."This month, two of Clarkson's Sundance entries finally arrive at an art-house theater near you. The first, "The Station Agent," is a sweet wisp of a movie about a train-obsessed dwarf, in which she plays a woman coping with the accidental death...
  • Jumpin' Jack Black

    Hey, Jack. Jack!" A woman with a baby stroller is trying to get Jack Black's attention as he waits in line at a midtown Manhattan burger joint. "I've got a blast from the past for you," she says as he wheels around. "OK," he answers. "Hit me." The woman tosses out the name of someone Black apparently knew in high school. "No way," Black says. "Wow. How's she doing?" At first it seems like Black is just being polite and feigning recognition to save the woman (and himself) from an awkward moment. But then: "You know she broke my heart, right?" The woman laughs. She did not know. "Yeah," he says fondly, "she was my first official sexual experience." After the burgers arrive, Black grabs a booth and elaborates. "We were 17. Same high school. She was the girl who deflowered me. Who stole my sweet cherry." So what happened? "She lost interest, dude." Black makes a bear-hugging gesture with his arms. "I just held on too tight."It's OK if you've never heard of Jack Black. He's not a...
  • Hey, God, It's Me, Joan

    CBS's spiritually inclined new show "Joan of Arcadia" ponders the same theological conundrum raised by the noted pop philosopher Joan Osborne in her 1995 hit song "What If God Was One of Us?" Osborne's tune is the theme music for the show and, it would appear, the blueprint for the entire story. In the series, a disaffected teenager (Amber Tamblyn) talks to God, who appears to her as a rotating gallery of people. If you recall, the very next line of Osborne's chorus asks us to consider the possibility that God could be "just a stranger on the bus." The first time Joan (of Arc... sorry, Arcadia... whatever) makes eye contact with God, he is--holy moly!--just a stranger on the bus."Joan of Arcadia" is really two shows stitched awkwardly together. The first--the good one--is about Joan, her run-ins with God (he wants her to apply herself more) and her relationship with her two siblings: 15-year-old science geek Luke (Michael Welch) and paraplegic older brother Kevin (Jason Ritter), a...
  • Newsmakers

    Project GreenhornsIt's a measure of Matt Damon's and Ben Affleck's celebrity that these best-friends-4-ever can make news without doing anything. The hottest play in New York now is an off-off-off Broadway production called "Matt & Ben," a spoof set in 1995, when they were struggling actors living in Boston. They're played by actresses (yep: co-playwrights Brenda Withers and Mindy Kaling) who bear little resemblance to the guys but do bang-up impersonations. The show has already drawn a few big names--Nicole Kidman, Steve Martin--though not a peep from the real Matt and Ben. A spokesman for the play notes that Matt's in Europe and Ben... well, has other stuff on his mind.Onstage, the script for "Good Will Hunting" literally falls from the ceiling, touching off an hourlong existential crisis. Matt thinks it's a blessing; Ben thinks it's a curse. (And how right they are!) Withers, who's very tall, plays Matt, the short one; Kaling, who's very short, plays Ben, the tall one....
  • The Day That Didn't Change Hollywood

    By now, it's no great revelation to say that the 9/11 effect--the term we used in those sensitive months after the attacks to describe all the shifts we anticipated in our lives and our thinking--never really happened, at least not in the world of mainstream film.We believed, briefly, that movies were going to be less frivolous. We believed, briefly, that movies were going to be less violent. And if it didn't happen right away, we reminded ourselves to be patient: making movies takes a long time, and it could be as much as 18 months before we noticed anything had changed.Now here we are, two years later, squarely in the post-9/11 era. If you see a movie now, there's no longer any question that it originated after the Twin Towers came down. And this past summer, it seemed like there were whole movies that stood as direct arguments against all those things we believed back in the fall of 2001. Movies will become less frivolous? "Charlie's Angels 2: Full Throttle." Movies will become...
  • Confessions Of An Emo Punk

    Chris Carrabba, a.k.a. Dashboard Confessional, the punk-acoustic grassroots phenomenon, is a passing fad. That should draw the hate mail. But don't shoot the messenger. Consider the source: Chris Carrabba. "I'm a flash in the pan," he says. "You heard it here first. I'm already signed up to play some state fairs down the line."But it'll be a while before Carrabba, 27, has to strain to be heard over the tractor pulls. Anticipation for Dashboard's third CD, "A Mark, a Mission, a Brand, a Scar," has been building for two years. Last week he finally delivered; next week, "A Mark" will be nipping at the heels of its predecessor, "The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most," an indie release that sold 500,000 copies in a fan-by-fan chain reaction. It was only a matter of time before kids weaned on Britney Spears got weaned off; for those who were ready for something grimy and authentic, Carrabba is the real deal. His tattooed torso and heartsick vocals make him a godsend for music fans at...
  • Freakin' Amazing

    Late one night about a year ago, Jamie Lee Curtis was falling asleep when the phone startled her. It was her agent calling. Just days before shooting, he told her, Annette Bening had to drop out of Disney's forthcoming remake of the 1976 body-swapping classic "Freaky Friday." "Oh, and now I suppose they're offering it to me?" Curtis asked, rolling her eyes. Yes, he said. "Come on," she replied, laughing. "Why are you really calling me?"Let's not sugarcoat this: Jamie Lee Curtis hasn't been working much these past few years. Since starring alongside California politico Arnold Schwarzenegger in 1994's "True Lies," her best acting job--aside from cell-phone commercials--has been in "Halloween: H20," in which she lamely revived the character she made famous in John Carpenter's original 1978 slasher flick. Just last August, during an appearance on the "Today" show to plug the latest of her five best-selling children's books, Curtis talked about her film career in the past tense. It was...
  • Queen For A Day

    Last Tuesday's episode of "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" made this gay-straight alliance cry --twice. The first time came minutes into Jersey City urban cowboy John B.'s makeover (mission: help him propose to his girlfriend) when the Fab Five's clothing expert, Carson Kressley, rifled through his closet and pulled out a particularly gruesome button-down shirt. "Where did you buy this?" Kressley asked. John winced. "Um, Kmart." Kressley pressed two fingers to John's lips. "Hey," he said, "don't you use that kind of language around me." We laughed till we cried. The second time came just before the Fab Five left John to fly solo through his proposal dinner. The gay miracle workers and their straight subject raised glasses of champagne, and John--his apartment painted and redecorated, his body refitted in classic Ralph Lauren, his engagement ring stashed romantically in a box of Parisian chocolate--got choked up himself. It was pointless to resist.In just three weeks, Bravo's "Queer...