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2 | Campus Circle

[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

Brooklyn flavor California “FRESH” since 1979. • FRESH DOUGH HAND SPUN • FRESH PRODUCE • THE BEST WISCONSIN CHEESE • HOMEMADE MEATS, SAUCES AND DRESSINGS • CATERING • PARTY NEEDS • DELIVERY

Dec. 17 - Dec. 23, 2008 • Vol. 18 Issue 48

Editor-in-Chief Jessica Koslow editor.chief@campuscircle.net

Managing Editor Yuri Shimoda managing.editor@campuscircle.net

“mighty meatballs” L.A. Times “visiting with huell howser” KCET/PBS broadcast

“ALL WE ARE SAYING IS… GIVE A PIECE A CHANCE”

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Film Editor Jessica Koslow film.editor@campuscircle.net

Art Director Alance Ward Editorial Interns Grace Ansani, Nicole Boisvert, Lauren Brodsky, Jennifer Driessen, Devon Klug, Paige Parker, Farnaz Youshei

22 16 22 INSIDE

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Contributing Writers Sasha Ali, Robert Axelrod, Lori Bartlett, Elsy Benitez, Sarah Bennett, China Bialos, Carter, Nick Day, Natasha Desianto, Jessica Go, A.J. Grier, Josh Herman, Zach

4 WOODEN NICKELS 4 SCHOOL ME

Hines, Joe Horton, Damon Huss, Jonathan Knell, Lucia, Ebony March, Angela Matano, Ryan McWhorter, Frederick Mintchell, Samantha Ofole, Brien Overly, Bonnie

6363 Yucca St.

323 790 0763 www.villagepizzeria.net

131 N. Larchmont Blvd.

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www.villagepizzeria.net

Priever, Sasha Perl-Raver, Joseph Poakwa, Gina Quattrochi, Parimal M. Rohit, Sam Roudman, Dov Rudnick, Rayhané S. Sanders, Sean Schlemmer, Mike Sebastian, Henry Senecal, Alissa Simmons, Doug Simpson, David Tobin, Emmanuelle L. Troy, Iván Villanueva, Kevin Wierzbicki

FILM

contents

Zach Bourque, Michael Buzzelli, Erica

5 JENNIFER ANISTON & OWEN WILSON Go Canine Crazy in Marley & Me

6 LAST CHANCE HARVEY

Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson reunite.

6 WILL SMITH

How Seven Pounds Changed His Life

6 JEFF GOLDBLUM

Becomes a Violinist in Adam Resurrected

25% OFF Throughout the month of December!

HAPPY HOUR! 3PM-6PM

Contributing Artists & Photographers China Bialos, Natasha Desianto, Gina Quattrochi, David Tobin

7 BENJAMIN BUTTON

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short story journeys to big screen.

8 THE WRESTLER

Mickey Rourke’s Tour de Force Performance

8 THE CLASS ADVERTISING Sean Bello sean.bello@campuscircle.net

Joy Calisoff joy.calisoff@campuscircle.net

Ronit Guedalia ronit.guedalia@campuscircle.net

Real-life Look at French Classroom

10 JIM CARREY Becomes a Yes Man

5 PROJECTIONS 8 REVIEWS 10 SCREEN SHOTS 10 DVD REVIEWS

David Haar david.haar@campuscircle.net

Assistant to the Publishers Frederick Mintchell

Campus Circle newspaper is published 47 times a year and is available free at 40 schools and over 800 retail locations throughout Los Angeles. Circulation: 30,000. Readership: 90,000.

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MUSIC 16 BRUTHA

Serenade You from the Radio to the TV

16 16 17 17 18 18 19

CD REVIEWS L.A. UNDERGROUND MUSIC REPORT FREQUENCY LIVE SHOW REVIEWS DVD REVIEW SPIN CYCLE

INNER CIRCLE 20 21 21 21 21 22 23

TECH BYTES THE ART OF LOVE ESSENTIAL L.A. CURTAIN CALL COMEDY THE 10 SPOT THE SPORTS WANDERER

COVER: Jim Carrey in Yes Man Credit: (c) 2008 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved


4 | Campus Circle

inner circle

[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

wooden nickels | B Y

JOE HORTON

OR, THE FORTUNES OF ROUGH AND READY Follow Los Angeles’ Lead this Christmas

TOP10 MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT

TANNING! Misconception #7

“Showering after tanning will remove your tan.”

U-TAN

Los Angeles

FACT: UVA and UVB stimulate melanin to be produced in the skin. Once natural melanin is produced, it takes 24-48 hours to develop your sun tan. Showering immediately after tanning will not affect your tan. After the melanin travels to the surface of the skin, it is lost in natural skin shedding, which is why a tan fades with time. Using a lotion can help keep skin healthy, moisturized, and extend the time needed between tanning sessions.

One Free Week

“IT’S NOT EVEN GOING TO BE CHRISTMAS,” my dad says now on numerous occasions, “what with the Bush Depression and all.” He loves the dramatic, and he’s right that the luster of Christmas, in the material sense, will doubtless be dimmed this season as shoppers cut back as they stare into the maw of a long, protracted period of economic churlishness. But I’m struck more than anything at this festive time of year by how many people have been and always will be children of a depression, now finally getting their chance to shine, and how many people who don’t even know it are showing us the way to scrimp and save. Los Angeles has never been a Christmas town. It’s warm and pleasant; its streets are crowded with cars even on Christmas morning. It’s a diverse community, an often atheistic or religiously apathetic place where the spiritual trappings of the day are lost in favor of the quotidian – not bad, necessarily, if the emphasis remains on family rather than on which store has the best return policy – and remains a city ideally suited for holiday seasons like this one, where flexibility is the name of the game. As we fall into the Bush Depression, an economic cataclysm not seen in 80 years, we as a country have little experience or frame of reference for how to respond. Americans have

for so long lived outside of their means that “cutting back” and “sacrificing” during a time of need is an utterly foreign concept. Sure, we can downgrade from the three-DVD-a-month Netflix subscription to a Dickensian two. Yes, we can put off one trip to Starbucks per week. Right now, the brunt of the Bush Depression is being shouldered heavily by specific Joe Horton portions of our society: those who took dubious home financing, those small business owners who cannot apply for a loan in a credit-strapped banking system, retail and service sectors that depend on disposable income. But the downturn in the financial markets also affects the savings of millions upon millions more. People who, unlike the breadliners of the ’30s, still have a home and food on the table but have seen their life’s work – retirement, college fund, health insurance kitty, rainy day fund – evaporate. Clearly, when you are hungry and have no food, you take any job you can find and stand in line for bread. When you have a job and a home and are still immensely unsure of your future, the path of subsistence living in times of crisis is more difficult to judge. Should we donate less to Salvation Army bell-ringers outside stores? More? Should we stuff cash in our mattresses or ride it out? In this holiday season, let’s start by taking a lesson from Los Angeles, the capital of the flexible holiday. Here, people celebrate the season regardless of creed and in spite of a paucity of traditional Christmas ornamentation. No snow, bare few carolers, palm tree Christmas trees, New Year’s Eve on the sand of the beach.

This year, it has to be out with the traditional across the country. Take that L.A. philosophy and apply it everywhere: You don’t need the huge tree you always get, you don’t need that fancy meal out at your favorite place on Christmas Eve. Hold off on the new TV even though you promised you’d get one this year, stay close to home and Skype with family across the country. This is a new depression for a new age, and we must establish fresh and effective means of making ends meet. Los Angeles has never been and will never be a model for simplicity or frugality, but I respect its capacity for flexibility, embracing the ideal that there is no one way to celebrate the season. It’s time to take the SoCal process and make it fit a new, decidedly un-SoCal philosophy. My dad, I think, has always wanted to be in a depression. He’s thrifty, loves going without and his favorite meal is, I kid you not, grits. He’s a man out of time, pure Horatio Alger (minus, of course, the pederasty and odd relationship with an older male benefactor), and he loves blaming everything on the Bush Depression while it validates a lifetime of prudent parsimony. He’s a boxcar prince now, ready for the worst without ever having to say I told you so to me, the squanderer who once made the foolish suggestion of buying new shoes when my current soles weren’t worn out yet. I’m learning, as we all are, how best to get by now. You can tell that it’s a different time: I’m saying my dad wasn’t completely crazy for all those years and that Los Angeles has something to offer the country on its road to improved, focused frugality. Strange days, indeed.

(expires 1/31/09)

Must Present Student ID

213.747.8182

3163 South Hoover Street (located in the University Village) www.utanla.com

school me | review Operation Valkyrie: The Stauffenberg Plot to Kill Hitler (Koch Vision)

For those of us accustomed to footage of Hitler’s troops obediently goose-stepping their way to world domination, the subject of Operation Valkyrie may come as a shock. But it goes without saying that a leader as reviled as Hitler might be the target of an assassination plot. Operation Valkyrie was a plot masterminded by Hitler’s own upperlevel military personnel. Lead by Claus von Stauffenberg, a group of military leaders planned a coup utilizing Operation Valkyrie, originally envisioned as an operation to maintain order of civilian population in the event of

a major upheaval. Unfortunately, Hitler escaped with his life and his regime intact. This two-DVD set explores the life of von Stauffenberg leading up to his involvement in the resistance, as well as details of his plot and the aftermath. Stunning footage from the WWII color archives paired with computer-generated re-enactments and interviews with family members of those involved bring these historic events to life. Grade: B —Natasha Desianto Operation Valkyrie: The Stauffenberg Plot to Kill Hitler is currently available.


DEC. 17 - DEC. 23, 2008 • VOL. 18

ISSUE 48 • campuscircle.com

MARLEY & ME Prepare to Fall in Love with the World’s Worst Dog BY EBONY MARCH THE PUBLIC HAS HAD A LONG fascination with man’s best friend. In the 1950s, a collie named Lassie warmed the hearts of millions with her MacGyver-esque rescue tactics as well as the companionship she provided for a little boy named Timmy. In the 1970s, Benji was the scruffy little mutt aiding the helpless in dire times of need. And throughout the 20th century, boys and girls alike marveled at the zany adventures of Snoopy as he did everything from impersonating the infamous Red Baron to dancing on piano tops with his owner, Charlie Brown. However, audiences never banked on a pooch that eats everything in sight, jumps like a kangaroo onto EVERYONE, destroys entire structures at the slightest loud noise and poops large mounds of mangoes – his favorite snack – for his owners to clean. Yes, it seems that the tide has turned, and the family dog has gotten a serious makeover. World: meet

Marley. In the film Marley & Me, this plucky yellow Labrador turns the lives of his owners John and Jenny Grogan (played by Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston) upside down. Marley soon earns himself the nickname “World’s Worst Dog” by his owners, and rightfully so. So destructive are his ways that he soon finds himself the subject of a newspaper column written by his journalist owner. While Marley and his wicked behavior may sound like a comic work of fiction, the film is actually a true story. Grogan solidified a name for himself in the ’90s as a writer for the Sun-Sentinel in Southern Florida. He later adapted his column into a bestselling book that would later capture the attention of Hollywood. “We were on vacation, and John’s phone didn’t stop ringing with various studios all trying to cut a movie deal for the book,” says Grogan’s wife, Jenny.

projections | essential film events

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE ANNUAL SCREENING Dec. 20 @ Echo Park Film Center BY SARAH BENNETT IF THE ECONOMY’S GOT YOU shaking in your Santa boots, trudge over to the Eastside and let the Echo Park Film Center’s morale-raising night of holiday nostalgia shower your season with cheer. Starting with a depressed man on the verge of suicide, feeling alienated and alone on a cold Christmas Eve, and ending with a slideshow of water-rotted 35mm slides, the EPFC’s yetuntitled holiday bash will be hours of free fun. The Echo Park Film Center is a nonprofit media arts organization that screens experimental and

independent films in its 60-seat microcinema, teaches the local twe-

ens how to use a Super-8 camera and rents out editing time on their stock of G4s. Every December, this in-

Many attribute the frenzy of the book to its endearing but astonishingly realistic look at the modern American family. In the movie, Aniston gives a tour de force performance as the frustrated wife and mother who is often left to care for the unruly animal while trying to raise three kids and maintain a career of her own. “It’s marriage. It’s children. It’s career, it’s ego, it’s success versus failure or competition and all of these things that I think universally affect people at some point in a relationship,” says Aniston. “You think it’s a kids’ movie or a dog movie but it’s just a lot more than that, and I made that terrible assumption until I was proven otherwise and had my heart ripped out.” “I like to think that it’s a story that touches a lot of people because our lives in one way are very ordinary, but in another way, that ordinariness translated into something that was somewhat universal,” John Grogan says. “And so people from all over the world have written me letters saying basically, ‘It was almost like you were describing our lives,’ and it was something accidental. I just stumbled on that. But I think many people fall in love, get married and build families, and that’s really what Marley & Me is about.” Therein lies one of the greatest lessons in Marley & Me. What

cognito storefront on Alvarado sets out the eggnog and reindeer treats for a come-one-come-all screening of It’s A Wonderful Life. This year, however, the EPFC has added some special guests to the bill and will also be showing local Al Kasselman’s Super-8 footage of the 1967 Echo Park Christmas Parade (before it became the more politically-correct Echo Park Holiday Parade) and a collection of moldy vacation pictures Doug Harvey found in a “dumpster-bound pile” on the curb. Save yourself some money and take the brood as their collective present. With so much family values and neighborhood history crammed into one night, your grandma won’t even care that you couldn’t afford to renew her Newsweek subscription. 5 p.m.

Echo Park Film Center?is located at 1200 N. Alvarado St., Echo Park. For more information, visit echoparkfilmcenter.org.

Barry Wetcher

FILM IN LOS ANGELES

John (Owen Wilson) and Jenny (Jennifer Aniston) futilely attempt to catch up with a fleeing Marley.

seemingly appears on the surface as this year’s lighthearted animal romp is earning itself a huge reputation for being one of the best movies about toughing it out with your best mate

(four-legged or otherwise) when the going gets rough. Marley & Me releases in theaters Dec. 25.

MEET BRUCE CAMPBELL THIS WEEKEND AT THE NUART!

Q&A with Bruce after the 7:30 & 9:50 showings Fri. & the 5:10, 7:30 & 9:50 showings on Sat. & Sun.!

“The body count is high, as is the entertainment factor.” –HorrorHound.com

“The ultimate love letter— with a pen dipped in poison—from Campbell to his die-hard followers.” –Michael Gingold, Fangoria.com

EXCLUSIVE ENGAGEMENT

LANDMARK THEATRES’ NUART 1272 Santa Monica Blvd. (just West of the 405 Fwy.) West Los Angeles Phone: (310) 281-8223 Showtimes: 12:30, 2:50, 5:10, 7:30 & 9:50 Extra show, Friday 12/19 only, at 11:59 pm

STARTS FRI., DEC. 19


6 | Campus Circle

[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

LAST CHANCE HARVEY Hoffman and Thompson: An Acting Marriage Made in Heaven

Merrick Morton SMPSP

film

Will Smith wants to be more, and do more, after starring in Seven Pounds.

Courtesy of Overture Films

BY SASHA PERL-RAVER BEFORE SUNRISE FOR THOSE IN THEIR SUNSET YEARS, LAST Chance Harvey stars Oscar winners Emma Thompson and Dustin Hoffman as two garrisoned, solitary souls who find themselves suddenly enthralled with each other. New Yorker Harvey Shine (Hoffman) is a jingle writer with the fuzzy end of the lollipop firmly shoved into his mouth who flies to London for his estranged daughter’s wedding. Harvey is drowning his sorrows at the airport bar when he meets Kate (Thompson), a single woman who buries herself in books, work and smothering phone calls from her mother. Together, they stroll through London, discovering the city and one another, and find the perfect antidote to loneliness. In many ways, the film was a case of art imitating life. Thompson and Hoffman previously worked together on Stranger Than Fiction. Their time together was brief, but the Dustin Hoffman and Emma instant connection they felt on set was Thompson in Last Chance Harvey staggering. Thompson describes it as “one of those rare discoveries” where the feelings were electric and cozy, instantly soothing and jubilant. “There seemed to be no obstacles, no edges to rub off, nothing,” Thompson says. “It happened with a very peculiar, intimate ease, and it was frustrating to us because we didn’t get more to do. We were kind of going mad with this feeling of ‘What a shame, couldn’t we just carry on these characters and make a film about them?’” Hoffman felt that he had found a kindred spirit and a creative mate in Thompson. “When you’re acting, it’s an intimate experience even though it’s short term,” Hoffman says. “It’s a marriage, an ordered, arranged marriage.” With Thompson, he was miserable at the idea of an acting divorce. What they’d found was too precious. “It doesn’t happen often,” he says, “but it did this time.” The pair decided they needed to embark on a project together, but Thompson wasn’t convinced of Hoffman’s sincerity. “You always say ‘Let’s work together again,’ but it never ever happens and then, when I got home, [the script for Last Chance Harvey] was waiting on my desk, and I sort of yelled, ‘Yes! Quickly! Before he’s forgotten!’” Thompson squeals. “He said he wanted to work with me, but you don’t believe anything anybody says.” Hoffman read the script, written by director Joel Hopkins, and, within 48 hours, had committed to the project. “I think we met, creatively, at the perfect time,” Hoffman explains of his leap to action. “We’ve spent a lifetime doing characters, but I don’t know that we’ve ever done us, personally.” Both actors felt the characters they were playing spoke to them in ways neither expected. “They felt they deserved a life, the characters did, and what married it to us was, we felt we deserved to do a film like this at least once,” Hoffman reveals, justifying the simple, heartfelt, emotionally driven piece they created. For Thompson, the simplicity was incredibly demanding. “I think the general challenge in this film is it’s not filled with plot, subplot, superplot, action, heroes, villains,” she says. “It’s what I call ‘Bread and Butter Acting.’ It’s inhabiting characters in a very subtle way and making very ordinary moments interesting, engaging and full of meaning. I don’t know that we would’ve been able to have done that when we were younger. That’s the advantage of being older and having done this job for such a long time.” In the end, the film is about one simple thing Thompson admits: “the movements of the human heart.” Last Chance Harvey releases in select theaters Dec. 25.

SEVEN POUNDS

The Movie That Changed Will Smith’s Life B Y S A S H A P E R L - R A V E R WILL SMITH’S NEW MOVIE, SEVEN Pounds, is a story so cryptic that any sort of synopsis would destroy the mystery the film must remain shrouded in. Instead, as a descriptive, Smith refers to the Shakespearean line from The Merchant of Venice, which inspired this tale of a man in search of seven people whose lives he can choose to change: “These griefs and losses have so bated me, that I shall hardly spare a pound of flesh tomorrow to my bloody creditor. Pray God, come to see me pay his debt, and then I care not!” The film is an emotionally demanding piece that had a profound impact on its star. Smith found that tackling the role offered him an unexpected window into his own existential dilemma. “This last year has been kind of scary and frustrating for me” Smith admits, despite a beaming ear-to-ear grin. “I had an epiphany after Seven

Pounds, and I realized how much more I want to be, how much more I want to do; the idea of living in service to humanity versus living in service to the commerce of my movies. I want to be remembered as a man who cared about people and dedicated his life to making the world better.” Smith was unprepared for the emotional ramifications his involvement in the project would have. He remembers times when his family would slink around him in silence because, he says laughing, he looked so crazy. Throughout the entire experience, what grew in him was a sense of redemptive virtue and the idea that the world held more promise than many realize. His spirituality was also tested throughout filming. Since he was a child, Smith was taught that, no matter how bad life got, there was always somebody in a higher place who would eventually make it better.

“To play a character who doesn’t necessarily believe that,” Smith pauses, shaking his head, “to feel that God made a mistake, and it’s his responsibility to fix it. To carry that emotional weight was a terrifying space for me, emotionally and artistically.” One wonders why a huge movie star with his pick of almost any script available would choose to tackle a role that contained so much fear and dread. Why not just focus on the prequel to I Am Legend and collect an easy paycheck? “There’s an idea that was one of the central concepts that I fell in love with in this movie,” he explains. “In the West we think about things in straight lines. There’s birth, there’s life and then there’s death, and at death there’s a cliff and it’s the end of the world and everything’s over. But that’s not how things work!” “If you take the end of that line and bend it into a circle,” he says excitedly, drawing circles in the air and punctuating them with claps of his hands, “there’s birth, life, death and then rebirth! Rebirth is inevitable!” he practically squeals. Perhaps that’s why, despite his apprehension, Seven Pounds was something of a rebirth for Smith; a liberating experience that altered the way he approaches material and how he looks at future projects. “The projects I was choosing, everything had to be OK in the end or it emotionally hurt me,” Smith realized. “Now my sensibilities have become slightly less delicate, and I’m able to venture out a little bit more into the world of emotional and artistic ambiguity in a way that strikes me as more authentic. If there’s been a movie in my career that I’d say changed my life, it’s Seven Pounds. Not Independence Day.” Seven Pounds releases in theaters Dec. 19.

ADAM RESURRECTED Goldblum’s Obsession B Y N I C K D AY JEFF GOLDBLUM IS CAPABLE OF making any character a memorable one. How did he prepare for the role of Adam Stein, an Oscar-worthy performance and Goldblum’s best work? “I like to prepare,” he says. “I’ve taught for the last 20 years, and I like the craft and new investigations, new experiments about how you can best prepare so good things can come out. I had this a year before I did the part. I learned the whole thing like a play.” For Goldblum, creating the character was not limited to reading. “I went to Germany,” he recalls. “I went to Israel for the first time, to suss out where my character might actually be living, what that life might be like.”

Goldblum also had to learn new talents. “I knew I had to attack the problem of the violin. You see me play before the war, then of course in the concentration camp. I’m a pianist. I know music, and I play the piano. I have a jazz group in Los Angeles, but I’ve never played the violin. I got a violin teacher early on, took lessons, got a violin and played it every day.” Adam Resurrected seems easy to obsess over. “At one point,” director Paul Schrader explains, “Orson Welles wanted to do it with Betty Davis. Charlie Chaplin was actually interested in it at one point. The current life [of the project], this man, Ehud Bleiberg, who read this book while he was on leave from the second Lebanon war, he became obsessed

Jeff Goldblum in Adam Resurrected

with the book and spent 20 years getting the rights, getting the script and getting it made.” Adam Resurrected releases in select theaters Dec. 19.


[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

“I’ll never get this part,” actor Jared Harris deadpans. “It’s true, mate,” says Jason Flemyng. “You just read it and went, ‘This is an amazing film that I’m not going to be in.’” Beyond the moving storyline, did the actors think this complex film would be technically possible? “Well, Finch says, you know, how do you eat a whale? One bite at a time,”

Flemyng says, very matter of fact. “I remember reading the script and going, ‘This is just enormously so ambitious.’ How do you – I don’t know how you do it, but you’re not suppose to,” reasons Harris.“You don’t need to.” Actress Taraji P. Henson plays Benjamin’s adoptive mother. Her character ages considerably, and Henson spent many hours in prosthetic

Campus Circle | 7

film makeup. “I have a newfound respect for Jim Carrey and Eddie Murphy and Tyler Perry, these guys who do this all the time,” Henson says. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button releases in theaters Dec. 25.

Merrick Morton

EXPERIENCE THE MOST EXTRAORDINARY STORY OF THE HOLIDAY SEASON Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett star in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON A Short Story That Took a Long Time to Make B Y N I C K D AY AFTER TWO DECADES OF BEING in development, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button finally hits the screen. What was the genesis of the project? “This was 18 years ago,” says producer Kathleen Kennedy, “it was initially bought by Ray Stark. There was an early incarnation when Steven [Spielberg] and Frank [Marshall] and I had Amblin, they brought it to us and Steven toyed with it for a bit, and several years after that Frank and I formed our own company. This was near and dear to our heart and no one was doing anything with it, so we acquired the rights at that point for ourselves and continued the development process for 18 years.” “We had taken it to Paramount,” adds producer Frank Marshall. “Sherry Lansing really believed in this story.” “Ironically, David Fincher – on his own – had read an early draft of the script about 12 or 13 years ago,” mentions Kennedy. “It really wasn’t until Eric Roth came on board and did a draft that David said I want to do this.” “There were people, department heads, who actually sat and turned down work for three or four years to do this movie,” says Kennedy. “We were going forward,” Marshall explains, “and then Zodiac came

along, and they wanted to do that first, and then getting all the schedules right, so we postponed, and these people who were ready to go on Benjamin waited. Then Hurricane Katrina happened.” How does Hurricane Katrina affect a story set on the East Coast? “Originally, they looked at filming it where [F. Scott] Fitzgerald originally set it,” says actress Julia Ormond, “Baltimore. That proved to be too expensive, but then they went to look at New Orleans and decided to film it there. Then Katrina hit, so they thought, well now what do we do? How do we incorporate it into the story? To what extent do we work it into the story? I think it adds an extra poignancy to it.” Some extra poignancy may have been just what Fitzgerald’s original story needed, according to screenwriter Eric Roth. “I read the short story. I really wasn’t wild about it to be honest with you,” Roth admits. “It’s a great conceit,” says Roth, adding,“not that I disliked it, but I just said, ‘What do I do with this?’ It’s a little farcical for my taste. But the core idea is so magnificent. What are the implications of somebody who ages backwards?” So when the actors first read the script, what was their initial impression?

COLUMBIA PICTURES PRESENTS IN ASSOCIATION WITH RELATIVITY MEDIA AN OVERBROOK ENTERTAINMENT ESCAPE ARTISTS PRO PRODUCTION CTION A FILM BY GABRIELE MUCCINO “SEVEN POUNDS” ROSARIO DAWSON MICHAEL EALY WITH BARRY PEPPER AND WOODY HARRELSON MUSIC EXECUTIVE WRITTEN DAVID D CROCKETT DAVID BLOOMFIELD KEN STOVITZ DOMENICO PROCACCI BY GRANT NIEPORTE BY ANGELO MILLI PRODUCERS DAVI PRODUCED DIRECTED BY TODD BLACK JAMES LASSITER JASON BLUMENTHAL STEVE TISCH WILL SMITH BY GABRIELE MUCCINO

HOLLYWOOD

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CENTURY CITY

AMC Century 15 310/289-4AMC

SHERMAN OAKS

WEST LOS ANGELES

The Landmark At Pico & Westwood Blvd. 310/281-8233

At The Sherman Oaks Galleria 818/501-0753

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WEST LOS ANGELES

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AND AT A THEATER NEAR YOU

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[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

Niko Tavernise

Ciao

Mickey Rourke as Randy “The Ram” Robinson in The Wrestler

THE WRESTLER An Honest Performance and a Lens B Y N I C K D AY DIRECTOR DARREN ARONOFSKY HAS MADE THE WRESTLER, which many critics believe to be a shoe-in at this year’s Oscars ceremony, specifically for the Best Actor category. “I went to see Angel Heart, and when the credits rolled I sat there and waited with the lights on ’til the lights came back down and the film started again,” recalls Aronofsky. “He’s such a unique talent, there’s no one like him, you know? You look into those eyes, and he’s just burning up.” Aronofsky is referring to his lead actor, Mickey Rourke, who plays Randy “The Ram” Robinson, a wrestler beyond his prime who wants nothing more than to be No. 1 just one more time. “He’s basically a ripped open nerve, and he’s just sizzling with emotion,” says Aronofsky. “Between action and cut there’s no one better, ’cause he just lets it go. He’s completely natural, and he’s a complete professional. He’ll keep going until you call cut.” The Wrestler is a simple film but emotionally complex, and it has garnered accolades on the festival circuit. “The honest performance and a lens is the true thing here,” admits Aronofsky. “People react to someone being really open. All three actors did it in different ways. Mickey in every way, Marisa [Tomei] with her body and creating such complexity and depth to the character and Evan Rachel Wood really brings some personal stuff to the plate.” Rourke, rightfully lauded for his performance, believes that the film’s success can be traced back to Aronofsky. “I think Darren is the main reason that this thing has had the success, the integrity, everything else that came with it because of what he brought to the table,” Rourke says. “His genius and his relentless strive for perfection and hard work. He’s a director that takes chances.” Rourke has had a tumultuous career, and it is something he acknowledges candidly. “Somebody said to me, ‘Do you think you could have given the same performance 15 years ago?’ And I said yes real quick,” Rourke pauses, “and the more I thought about it, I went, ‘Hmm. Fifteen years ago I would have maybe thrown Darren Aronofsky out of a window or told him to go fuck himself. So, I’m grateful for the changes that I’ve had to make.” The sincerity of that gratitude is evident when Rourke talks about his work in The Wrestler. “Forget all the other things I was in,” Rourke says. “This is the movie that defines everything. People say to me, ‘What’s the best movie you ever made?’ Barfly, Angel Heart, this one, that one – this is the best fucking movie I’ve ever made and the hardest movie I’ve ever made, and it’s the movie I’m most proud of. Good isn’t good enough, not when you’ve wasted 15 fucking years. “I learned a great lesson on this movie. Maybe I learned it before, but I didn’t stick to it. I really need to work with people that I have respect for, with casts that I have respect for, with material, director, because if I don’t do that, then that’s when all hell breaks loose. This is my second chance, and this is my last chance. I’m looking toward having some longevity in my career.” Like the title character, Rourke won’t go down without a fight, and his performance is proof positive of how magnificent he can be. The Wrestler releases in select theaters Dec. 17.

Schreiber (the upcoming X-Men Origins: Wolverine) and Jamie Bell (King Kong) play the Bielski brothers. These Russian Jews saved their people the best way they knew how: by fighting back against Hitler’s army. Defiance is a stunning story of survival, vengeance and community. Grade: B —Ebony March Defiance releases in select theaters Dec. 31.

saving the town and always getting the girl. The only thing is, this time he’s doing it as himself after he’s brought to a town thinking it’s a big joke, only to realize it’s not, once he comes face to face with the ancient Chinese god Guan Di. Fans of Bruce will enjoy seeing him play a caricature of himself. Just business as usual for old Bruce. Grade: B —James Dusenberry My Name Is Bruce releases in select theaters Dec. 19.

film notes | reviews (Regent Releasing) Attending to the affairs of Mark, his recently deceased friend, Jeff comes across e-mails from a stranger, Andrea. Overcame by his curiosity, Jeff invites Andrea to come and stay with him. During this short period of time and through their association with Mark, both men embark on a new journey of friendship, one that has the potential to change their lives. The movie resembles a still photograph, except even in photographs emotion jumps at the viewer. Here, there’s only a straight line. No ups and downs. Directed by Yen Tan (Happy Birthday, Love Stories), Ciao is characterized by long shots, long stares and long silences. Grade: F —Farnaz Youshei Ciao releases in select theaters Dec. 26.

Daniel Craig as “Tuvia Bielski” in Defiance

Defiance (Paramount Vantage) They weren’t supposed to survive the Nazi invasions, let alone the Holocaust, but somehow they did. In Defiance, Daniel Craig (007), Liev

Gomorrah

(Yari Film Group) In a thinly veiled retelling of New York Times reporter Judy Miller’s life story, Nothing But the Truth is a brutally dull political drama starring Kate Beckinsale as a reporter who, like Miller, is jailed after she refuses to name her source in an article outing a CIA operative. Beckinsale is all bouncy ponytail and no brilliance in an emotionally demanding role that leaves her blinking vacantly for the majority of the film. Writer-director Rod Lurie (The Contender) fails to conjure a coherent, compelling story, though he does continue his thematic preference for highlighting women in precarious political situations while filling the screen with tremendously talented actors including Angela Bassett as Beckinsale’s editor, Vera Farmiga as the revealed CIA operative and Alan Alda, providing some of the film’s few shining moments as Beckinsale’s longsuffering lawyer. Overflowing with laborious speeches about the virtues of the First Amendment and the necessity for journalistic integrity, the film fails to

My Name Is Bruce (Image Entertainment) Bruce Campbell is back doing what he does best, fighting evil monsters,

THE CLASS

The Complexities of Teaching, Learning, Surviving BY BONNIE PRIEVER THE CLASS IS A STORY OF LIFE in a French middle school classroom, a self-contained community of 25 students and their teacher, François. All of the adolescent students, teachers and staff were real and authentic, not fabricated or professional actors. The chosen school (Françoise Dolto Junior High in Paris’ 20th arrondissement) was specifically selected for the socio-economic mix and racial blend of the student body. Director Laurent Cantet wanted to show what’s really happening in a class, “so people can look at this little microcosm which describes all the issues facing our society.” Cantet felt that non-professional actors and people playing themselves brought the film more authenticity.

Nothing But the Truth

(IFC) Unlike Hollywood’s depiction of mob and mafia families, Gomorrah, based on the book by Roberto Saviano, offers a less glamorous view. With references to the Biblical city of Gomorrah, a city destroyed by God for the depravity of its people, director Matteo Garrone depicts the chaos and violence caused by the Camorra crime family. Grand Prize winner at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival, Saviano’s story and Garrone’s direction tell the story of a reality where the quiet of everyday life is shattered by the sound of gunfire and the stench of blood and violence. Here, in the regions of Naples and Caserta, Don Ciro, Totò, Roberto, Pasquale, Marco and Ciro, strangers only connected by their tie to the mob, need to make a decision. What is the price of power? Is it worth losing all that one holds dear? Grade: B —Farnaz Youshei Gomorrah releases in select theaters Dec. 19.

The film was mostly shot during Wednesday after-school improv workshops (long, intense days), depicting life in the classroom, almost in documentary style. Cantet wished to “capture the energy” of each scene and used three cameras: one focused on the teacher, one on the student featured and one capturing random background events, such as a student daydreaming or sleeping. François, as the idealistic teacher, strives to improve and enrich the lives and minds of inner city students. The film shows the trials and tribulations of teaching middle school – how teachers and students make mistakes even when they try their best. Director Cantet states,“One of my convictions is that you can make a

CONTINUED ON PAGE 15

Pierre Milon, courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

film

«

8 | Campus Circle

(l to r) François Begaudeau as François, Franck Keita as Souleyman and Boubacar Toure as Boubacar

good actor out of anyone, if you listen to what they say and develop a great trust.” The Class shows that diversity and integration in schools is not a problem, but a richness: Children in multi-cultural settings are much more open and tolerant and willing to confront situations, working together as a team. The one message Cantet hopes audiences will take from the film is “how complex the school system is throughout the world; how complex to teach, to learn, to survive.” The Class releases in select theaters Dec. 19.


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film

[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

screen shots | BY ZACH HINES

Although 2008 saw a lot of garbage filmmaking, there were still quite a few brilliant films released. Here are several that found their way into my heart.

American Teen

Milk Sean Penn hit a grand slam. I’m a biased Penn fan, and he even surprised

(Paramount) Coasting off the success of Juno, American Teen, a documentary film exploring the authentic high school experience, embraces the awkward moments that brand one for life. Like a real-life Breakfast Club, this movie gives us all of the stereotypical stock characters, like the Jock and the Rebel, and then shows us what really goes on, behind the façade. Grade: B —Angela Matano American Teen will be available Dec. 21.

me with his performance. A must see, especially considering the unbelievably disgusting and offensive passing of Prop 8 in November.

Hancock

The Dark Knight Hands down the best film of the year. It’s safe to assume that if you weren’t ready to propose marriage to this film like I was, you still loved or at least liked it.

Man on Wire The incredible story of tightrope walker Philippe Petit’s daring feat of balancing on a wire between the Twin Towers was not only one of the best films of the year, but one of the best documentaries ever.

Iron Man Although contrasting with the seriousness of The Dark Knight and subscribing to the more balanced tone of the Spider-Man films, Iron Man easily became one of the best comic book films. Cloverfield An awesome twist on the traditional monster/disaster film from producer J.J. Abrams. Everyone who puked because of the shaky hand-held camera needs to step up their game or stay home.

Speed Racer I was very surprised when this film tanked at the box office because I absolutely loved it. I think it will gradually be more appreciated as time goes on.

Stealing America This documentary, about how the cesspool of human sludge that calls itself the Bush Administration stole both the 2000 and 2004 elections, was scarier than all the horror films of the year put together.

Rambo A solid entry into the Sly Stallone franchise; The highlight of the film was easily the scene where a member of a Burmese death squad snatched a baby out of the arms of its mother and threw it into a fire. Stallone has quite the sense of humor. Wall-E Pixar cannot be stopped. They have their formula down cold. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a movie where I could hear everyone in the theater crying.

Hellboy II: The Golden Army Besides The Dark Knight, this year also saw another sequel top its predecessor.

Religulous Political comedian Bill Maher’s hilarious documentary about the ridiculousness of religion was a breath of fresh air for me amidst having to listen to frightening, hypocritical, religious fundamentalism during the election. W. George W. Bush and Oliver Stone: end of story. Slumdog Millionaire Probably the biggest surprise of the year, this excellent Bollywood film from director Danny Boyle might be the first of a new movement of Hollywood directors experimenting with the genre. Quantum of Solace Was it better than Casino Royale? Not quite. Did I like it? Very much. Do I care what you thought about it? Definitely not.

The Wrestler One of the most moving films of the year, The Wrestler may mark the big return of Mickey Rourke.

Timecrimes This Spanish language film about a man who accidentally travels back in time one hour and the craziness that ensues was one of the best films about time travel I’ve ever seen. Another example of the consistency of high quality foreign films compared to that of Hollywood fare.

Che This four-hour exodus into the life and times of Ernesto “Che” Guevara displayed more brilliant acting chops from the great Benicio Del Toro as the revolutionary freedom fighter. At the time of writing this, there are still a few films I haven’t seen that I want to see, so in the event that they would’ve made this list, I’ve included them.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button If you saw the trailer for this film, about a child who is born an old man and ages backward, and weren’t at least intrigued by it, I’ll make sure there is some room on that rocket ship aimed at the sun that’s reserved for the Republicans.

Valkyrie Bryan Singer’s first non-superhero film since the ’90s. What Jew wouldn’t enjoy a film about a plot to assassinate Hitler?

The Spirit Frank Miller’s sophomore effort as a director after co-directing Sin City with Robert Rodriguez; If anything, this film is going to reaffirm that four out of five times I will pay to see Samuel L. Jackson movies. Defiance Daniel Craig trading his license to kill for WWII. What Jew wouldn’t enjoy a movie about a group of Jews giving the Nazis the finger?

Terrific MERYL STREEP Performances

dvd dish | reviews

(Sony) My favorite of all the comic book films of 2008, which I realize is going out on a limb, Hancock provides the most entertainment bang for your buck without dragging on for 112, 126, 152 minutes (The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, The Dark Knight). Jason Bateman and Charlize Theron provide the twists, turns and comic relief that turn Hancock into my unsung hero of the year. Grade: B+ —Angela Matano Hancock is currently available.

Inside the Circle

1) Sophie’s Choice (won Oscar) 2) The Devil Wears Prada (Oscar nod) 3) The French Lieutenant’s Woman (Oscar nod) 4) Adaptation (Oscar nod) 5) Postcards from the Edge (Oscar nod) 6) Kramer vs. Kramer (won Oscar) 7) Silkwood (Oscar nod) 8) The Hours 9) Out of Africa (Oscar nod) 10) Angels in America (won Emmy) 11) The Deer Hunter (Oscar nod) —Angela Matano

(Cinema Libre) Two best friends in Austin, Texas end up in rival b-boy crews and compete against each other in their local competition, B-Boy City, year after year. While one, Omar, realizes unimagined success, flying around the world to judge battles and perform in exhibitions, the other, Josh, is constantly impeded by his penchant for trouble and resulting arrests. Engaging plot aside, what powers Inside the Circle is the pop locking, power moves, footwork and passion of the breakers, and the competition organizer, Romeo Navarro. Grade: B —Jessica Koslow Inside the Circle is currently available.

ist entertainment. Whether it hits the bullseye or not, depends purely on your own sensibility. Grade: B—Angela Matano Mamma Mia! is currently available.

Man on Wire (Magnolia) While the New York Times claims Man on Wire to be “maybe the best movie of the year,” I have to admit to a certain disappointment on finally seeing this highly acclaimed film. The premise of tightrope walking between the late Twin Towers in New York never mentions 9/11, but instead lets the tragedy haunt the film with predatory subtext. Grade: C —Angela Matano Man on Wire is currently available.

Mamma Mia! The Movie (Universal) I think it’s fair to say that Mamma Mia! is either a movie that you will either love or hate. Bursting with irrepressible spirit, this musical, chock full of ABBA songs and with zero pretensions, aims for straight-ahead escap-

YES MAN

and a bar brawl as Carl begins to realize that sometimes you can have too much of a good thing and his Yes-itude needs to be modulated. “I just like being creative,” Carrey says simply one afternoon over apple juice at the B Y S A S H A P E R L - R AV E R Beverly Hilton. “I just want to tell stories. Ultimately, it’s not the money, certainly THREE LITTLE LETTERS, ONE not the fame, because that’s a pain in simple word: Y-E-S, Yes! the ass; it’s really the person in the seat Jim Carrey is returning to his ’90s that you think about when you sit in roots of high concept comedy with Yes the rooms and write. It really comes Man, the story of Carl Allen (Carrey), down to thinking about someone a man caught in a tailspin thanks to his laughing. It’s really that that gets me constant negativity and dependence off; the idea of people actually on the word “No,” until he signs up for laughing and maybe having something a self-help seminar with one simple to think about when they leave the tenant: Say Yes to EVERYTHING! theater.” Finding himself in a powerful The message Carrey hopes aucovenant, Carl unleashes the power of dience take with them after seeing Yes “Yes” and discovers his life changes in Man is simple and surprisingly remarkable, unexpected ways from heartfelt from the man who has made promotions to romance. millions by talking with his ass cheeks. Of course, since it’s a Jim Carrey “To have a good laugh and feel comedy, there’s also some bungee good in your heart, that is a message,” jumping, oral sex from a senior citizen

Jim Carrey’s in it for the laughs.

Melissa Moseley

10 | Campus Circle

Jim Carrey stars as Carl in Yes Man.

Carrey proclaims sounding charmingly Tony Robbins-esque. “Engage in life, say yes more than you did before and life turns out alright. Usually you regret the things you say no to.” Yes Man releases in theaters Dec. 19.


“THRILLING ROLLER COASTER RIDE.” Paul Fischer, DARK HORIZONS

“ STYLISH. FUN.

COOLLY

” ENTERTAINING.

Bill Goodykoontz,

Kenneth Turan “ENJOYABLE. It’s Hard To Think Of Another Actor...Who Could Convey As Well As Reeves The Stranger-In-A-Strange-Land Aura Of Klaatu. He Chills The Blood In The Most Pleasant Way.”

“AMAZING!

MIND-BLOWING!” Mark S. Allen, CBS/CW TV

“IGNITES

THE SCREEN!”

Paul Christensen, MOVIEWEB NATIONAL


12 | Campus Circle

[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

p12-13.pdf on ftp


[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

p12-13.pdf on ftp

Campus Circle | 13


INVITES YOU TO ENTER FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN RUN-OF-ENGAGEMENT PASSES FOR FOUR TO SEE MARLEY & ME! TO REGISTER FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN, VISIT:

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THIS FILM IS RATED PG FOR THEMATIC MATERIAL, SOME SUGGESTIVE CONTENT AND LANGUAGE. PARENTAL GUIDANCE SUGGESTED. Some Material May Not Be Suitable For Children. Please note: Run-of-engagement passes are good Monday - Thursday (excluding holidays). Passes received through this promotion do not guarantee you a seat at the theatre. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis and is open to paying customers. All federal, state and local regulations apply. A recipient of tickets assumes any and all risks related to use of ticket, and accepts any restrictions required by ticket provider. 20th Century Fox, Campus Circle and their affiliates accept no responsibility or liability in connection with any loss or accident incurred in connection with use of a prize. Tickets cannot be exchanged, transferred or redeemed for cash, in whole or in part. We are not responsible if, for any reason, winner is unable to use his/her ticket in whole or in part. Not responsible for lost, delayed or misdirected entries. All federal and local taxes are the responsibility of the winner. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. Participating sponsors, their employees and family members and their agencies are not eligible. NO PHONE CALLS!


[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

film notes | reviews

«

answer the most important question: Why should we care? Grade: D —Sasha Perl-Raver Nothing But the Truth releases in select theaters Dec. 19.

Revolutionary Road (Paramount Vantage) Based on Richard Yates novel, Revolutionary Road reunites Titanic’s famously doomed lovers, Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet. Directed by Winslet’s husband, Sam Mendes, the film is a portrait of a stagnant 1950s suburban couple desperate to break free. Crowded with emotional cannibalism, screaming, emoting and angst, Revolutionary Road is an actor’s dream but the audience’s burden. Grade: C —Sasha Perl-Raver Revolutionary Road releases in theaters Dec. 26.

The Tale of Despereaux (Universal) In the kingdom of Dor live four unlikely heroes: the small bodied but massive eared Despereaux (Matthew Broderick), the lonely Princess Pea (Harry Potter’s Emma Watson), the servant girl with a dream Mig (Tracey Ullman) and a rat named Roscuro (Dustin Hoffman). After Despereaux is banished from Mouseworld and Pea is kidnapped, the tiny mouse must discover if he has the heart to become a hero. Inspired by the Newberry Award winning book by Kate DiCamillo, with a screenplay by Gary Ross (Big) and from the director of Flushed Away (Sam Fell), The Tale of Despereaux is a heartwarming film for the rebel in us all. Grade: A—Yuri Shimoda The Tale of Despereaux releases in theaters Dec. 19.

Where God Left His Shoes (IFC) What says Christmas Cheer like the plight of the working poor? Where God Left His Shoes begs

the question with a surprising degree of grace and seriousness. Anchored by John Leguizamo as Frank Diaz, a failed boxer and dutiful husband, the movie follows the Diaz clan as they are evicted from their New York apartment and forced to move into a shelter. Most of the action takes place on Christmas Eve as Frank scours the city to find a job and secure a government apartment in the Bronx that just became available. This proves to be a challenge, and the follies of Frank and his stepson – expertly capturing the bustle of Holiday New York – are tragicomic, lean and effective. The only gripe would be the rest of the Diaz clan (wife and stepchildren), who come off more as stressed suburbanites stuck in an airport terminal than a poor family with the gumption and dignity to stay together rather than stay somewhere with a roof over their heads.But perhaps that’s merely a product of Leguizamo’s strength in this role, his expert notso-wise-guy cadence and beaten down jocularity. Grade: A—Sam Roudman Where God Left His Shoes releases in select theaters Dec. 19.

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 8

The surreal animation illustrates the bizarre and dreamlike quality of memory.It hides the reality in something fantastic. At the same time, Folman recognizes that the truth about the destruction and trauma caused by wars does not stay hidden forever. Grade: B —Farnaz Youshei Waltz with Bashir releases in select theaters Dec. 25.

The Yellow Handkerchief (Arthur Cohn Production) Udayan Prasad’s new movie follows the journey

Campus Circle | 15

of three strangers. Each carries a film different past and an uncertain future. This is yet another movie falling into Hollywood’s obsession with strangers crossing paths with life alternating results. William Hurt, Maria Bello, Kristen Stewart and Eddie Redmayne star. Grade: C —Farnaz Youshei The Yellow Handkerchief releases in theaters Dec. 17.

Waltz With Bashir (Sony Pictures Classics) Prompted by his friend’s recurring dreams and intrigued by his own lack thereof, filmmaker Ari Folman embarks on a journey to find the truth. The riddle: What really happened over 20 years earlier during the first Lebanon War? Waltz With Bashir is the reality he finds and the memories he can no longer forget.

staff pick ‘SEX AND THE CITY’ Dec. 23 @ Tranquility Base As a lovelorn fashionista, you LOVED the show. Then came the movie that left you absolutely breathless. But after spending all your money on Manolos and Cosmopolitans, you can hardly afford the major bucks to own this hot property on DVD. No worries: Get your fix of Carrie, Charlotte, Miranda and Samantha every Tuesday when Tranquility Base screens episodes for super fans just like you. Show up fabulous, leave satisfied. 6:30 pm. —Ebony March

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[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

cd reviews M A K I N G TH E G R A D E : A B C D F

EXC E PTI O N A L WO RTH W H I L E MEDIOCRE SAVE YOUR MONEY WILL BE ON HELL’S JUKEBOX

Deerhunter Microcastle (Kranky) Deerhunter is from Atlanta, so it’s no surprise that a great deal of their material sounds like the music that came out of nearby Athens in the nascent days of alternative rock. Microcastle begins with “Cover Me (Slowly),” a lazilypaced instrumental that sounds like an outtake from Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, but that short trip to inner space is followed by three tunes with the distinct Athens vibe: “Never Stops,” “Little Kids” and “Agoraphobia.” “Microcastle” carries on in hushed tones for more than two minutes, but just when you think the song is a lullaby, the drums and fuzzy guitars kick in and rock. The middle of the album is similarly non-conformist with elfin vocals and odd twinkles set to spare piano melodies. The bluesy “Saved by Old Times” takes the band in yet another direction, while the biggest surprise is saved for last with the John Lennon-like “Twilight at Carbon Lake.” Grade: B —Kevin Wierzbicki Microcastle is currently available.

Flipron Gravity Calling (Tiny Dog) If you haven’t heard of Flipron, it’s not that surprising and yet still greatly unfortunate. These Glastonbury, UK rockers have only barely made a showing in the American market with most of their notoriety coming from Alex de Campi’s clever YouTube animations, but their unique ability to spin pop tunes that find the lightness in the darkest topics (and vice versa) make them worth Googling. Their latest album, Gravity

music 101 | artist feature

BRUTHA

The Harrell 5 Rock With You BY J. POAKWA THE WORLD OF R&B HAS BEEN on a recent upswing with acts like NeYo, Robin Thicke and The-Dream. However, if there’s one thing to learn from Diddy’s efforts, it’s that putting together a group is hard to do. Egos of strangers can be very hard to manage, and groups sometimes end up in dismemberment. If there’s two things to learn, the second would be, when done right, you can take any group of individuals to the top. Taking a page from Diddy’s playbook, Island Def Jam looks to one-up the mogul with their answer to the Day26 craze: Brutha. Though Brutha has a reality show like the former (B.E.T.’s “Brothers to Brutha”), trust my words when I say there is no copy/wannabe/imitation here. Unlike other groups to come out in recent relevance, Brutha is not your average group of singers. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Brutha (Grady, 24, Anthony, 22, Cheyenne, 21, Jared, 20 and Jacob, 19) comes from a long line of performers.

“Our dad was a singer, and our grandma was a singer. It dates back to our great grandmother who was an opera singer,” says Cheyenne. It’s no wonder these five real-life brothers do it all: sing, write, produce and dance. Their talent caught the eye of Def Jam’s Jermaine Dupri, President of Island Records Urban Music, who, upon hearing them sing live, signed the group to the label, stating that he’s never seen a connection like theirs before. When these five talented guys grab the mic, there seems to be a certain aura about them that screams, as Grady puts it, “We do this!” Learning to sing at an early age, in part due to family history and a Joe Jackson-like encouragement from their father, Brutha has been perfecting their craft since pampers. “We’ve been singing our whole lives, literally. As soon as we came out the womb our dad started to train us,” says Cheyenne. From talent shows to Bar Mitzvahs and weddings, Brutha has been preparing themselves for stardom. Now with their hit show on

l.a. underground | B Y

DAVID TOBIN

THE YELLING

Classic rock invades their bodies. duced by Iron Butterfly. FOR YEARS, PEOPLE HAVE BEEN following what radio and TV have told them is “hot” or “groundbreaking.” But with little substance behind the hype, it fades away. Now with the Internet being the main source for music and radio’s rapid decline, we have a choice again. And with that, I’d like to present the Yelling. This L.A.-based quartet is a mix of straightforward rock ’n’ roll rooted in blues and good songwriting. They sound like Led Zeppelin crashed a Who recording session being pro-

Calling, continues their trend of quirky rock songs of love and loss. The album offers quite a few rocking tunes that hide artfully dark lyrics, including the grim love song “Mavis,” the album’s first single, “Book of Lies,” and “How It Works,” a very Zombies-esque rock throwback. The album is not pure rock,

“We get compared to Zeppelin, and that’s amazing. They are one of the best bands ever,” smiles drummer Michael Judd. And he’s right; they really do capture the enduring sound of a band that changed the face of music. But where do they go from there? This band has evolved the lo-fi rock that the Hives and the (International) Noise Conspiracy have laid out. The once peppy songs that the public clamored for have turned raw and ugly. The music is dirty, tough and simple. “The music isn’t forced. We want

Brutha: (l to r) Grady, Jacob, Anthony, Jared and Cheyenne

B.E.T creating buzz and debut selftitled album set to release, Brutha feels, with the way the music industry is on a decline, now is the time to change the game. “We love the business, but we’re kind of disgusted that there isn’t more good music as opposed to bull crap,” says Grady in regards to the lack of “natural” talent in the industry. A throwback to the days of soul, Brutha looks to bring something new and refreshing to the music industry while taking elements from the eras when music was about talent rather than image. “We try to capture old school, because that’s all we were raised on; the Jackson 5, New Edition and Boyz II Men. When you come to our show it’s always gonna be high energy and stepping, but we’re gonna hit you with an a cappella to take you back and

show you how we really can sing,” says Cheyenne on what Brutha brings to the table. Though the passing of their mentor and former Def Jam Executive VP Shakir Stewart has put them in a vulnerable state, the hands-on guidance he gave them before he died has helped them grow closer as a group. With their current single “I Can’t Hear the Music,” featuring Fabolous, making its rounds on radio and TV and a debut album crafted with care by some of the music industry’s best writers and producers, Brutha is on their way to winning fans across America. Brutha will be available Dec. 23. Catch “Brothers to Brutha” on B.E.T. at 10:30 p.m. Dec. 23. For more information, visit myspace.com/thisisbrutha.

that raw sound, the freedom to let the music happen,” comments guitarist Robert Davis. It’s clear that this band is letting the music move them, which in turn moves the crowd. They have something music has needed for a while: aggressive songs with great songwriting. The Yelling get compared to Zeppelin. The lyrics are born out of to truly understand the power of the the mind of Nathaniel Cox, singer and Yelling is to see them live. The energy occasional guitarist for the band who rushes off the stage, gripping your gut says, “We have slow stuff too that’s and pulls you to the floor. Banging mellow and allows us to have a more your head to the beat, it’s hard to not organic sound. The range is important be drawn into the world that this band to us.” creates for their 45-minute set. Their song, “Burning for What” is It’s like the soul of classic rock a primary example of the band’s invaded their bodies and got really ability to slow things down but still pissed off. preserve their raw intensity found on heart-pounding tracks like “Blood The Yelling will perform Dec. 18 at the on the Steps” and “Fire and a Three of Clubs, Hollywood. For more Microphone.” information, visit But despite all the reviews and myspace.com/theyelling. comparison of the band, the only way David Tobin

music

though, offering their signature anachronistic musicality with the slow yet lively “A Scoundrel’s Apology, Almost” and the mournful yet prozombie tune “Zombie Blues.” Grade: A —Jonathan Knell Gravity Calling is currently available.

Kid Acne Romance Ain’t Dead (Lex) Kid Acne is a British hip-hop artist who’s been on the scene for over a dozen years, and he’s had plenty of time to polish up his act. Why then he CONTINUED ON PAGE 17

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16 | Campus Circle


[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

music report | B Y

KEVIN WIERZBICKI

A (Jeffree) Star is born.

Kii Arens

Jeffree Star has come a long way since the first time he donned a mini-dress and high heels and headed for the clubs of Hollywood. His talent with cosmetics soon landed him personal makeup artist jobs with Kelly Osbourne, Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton. Next came modeling, his own clothing line at Hot Topic and guest appearances in videos by Good Charlotte, Godhead and Peaches. You may have seen him Brody Dalle of Spinerette took time off to become a mom. on “America’s Next Top Model” or “L.A. Ink.” Now Jeffree’s star is set to including the much-ballyhooed Kurt rise even higher as he has just released Cobain biography Never Fade Away. an EP (on his own label of course, His latest effort, I Hate New Music – Popsicle) called Cupcakes Taste Like The Classic Rock Manifesto, is a Violence. collection of essays that cleverly opine Star’s music is a little bit Depeche that music today just isn’t what it used Mode and a little bit Erasure, and if to be. you’re not already one of the 60,000 Thompson says the book is about daily visitors sampling his music on his a time “When Iggy Pop’s ode to smack MySpace page you can stop by for a wasn’t being used to peddle cruise ship free download of the cut “Starstruck” vacations, when the James Gang and that also features Danger Radio. The Humble Pie ruled the FM airwaves and very busy Mr. Star is readying his fullwhen Asia was still just a place where length debut, tentatively titled Beauty Led Zeppelin bootlegs of dubious Killer, for an early 2009 release. quality and legality originated.” The book is a fast, fun read full of quips like “Why listen to of Montreal I Hate New Music when you have the Mamas and the Dave Thompson has written over Papas?” and lists such as “Ten songs a hundred books about music

frequency | essential concerts | B Y Dec. 17 @ The Troubadour OK, imagine the Strokes or the Bravery … only more retro. Unthinkable, yes? Looking quite literally like they’ve just crawled out of the basements and garages of ’80s rock but sounding like they’ve just warped in from the ’70s, these New York natives are throwbacks to a lot of very cool past eras without any of usual campy clichés.

Cass Bird

The Virgins

The Virgins are a throwback to a lot of cool past eras.

Dustin Kensrue Dec. 19 @ The Troubadour As the frontman for hard rocking band Thrice, Dustin Kensrue’s vocals could make even the most hardened of headbangers feel just a bit soft inside. Now stick him on stage solo in an intimate venue behind only an acoustic guitar?

Brody is a Spinnerette. If you wonder why you haven’t heard much about Brody Dalle (the Distillers) over the last couple of years it’s because she took some time off to start a family with her husband, Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age, Eagles of Death Metal). During the hiatus she gave birth to a daughter but also lost her father, and she says that both occasions inform music recorded with her new band Spinnerette. “The profound joys and deep sadness in that period couldn’t help but come out in my art, as with all experiences worth exploring further. Having such extremes occur in a compacted period ensured that they all appear in this collection of Spinnerette songs.” Four new songs have been released as a digital EP called Ghetto Love and can be found at iTunes and spinnerettemusic.com.

MCR’s Three Cheers on Vinyl Reprise has released Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge, My Chemical

B R I E N O V E R LY evoke a sense of optimism in his listeners. Along for the heart-wrenching ride are fellow big-name-gone-solo frontmen Jim Ward, Chris Conley, Jon Foreman and Aaron Weiss, all of whom are equally as adept at making us painfully aware of all our hidden emotions as they strum away at a sixstring. But, y’know, in a totally good way. This show also benefits Invisible Children, a very worthwhile cause that everyone should take some time to familiarize with. What I’m trying to say is, if you support this show, I’ll give you a free karmic pass for buying that Metro Station CD at any point this year. This show also benefits Invisible Children, a very worthwhile cause that everyone should take some time to

effects laden number that like much of the album has its nerdiness countered by the coolness of his heavy accent. Kid leaves the hip-hop sound in the dust (and also comes up with one of the album’s best songs) as he fires up a barrage of fuzz guitar for the “oi” flavored garage rocker “Fcuk All Lately,” but the album closes with two

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Romance’s 2004 breakthrough album, on limited-edition vinyl. The disc is pressed on red vinyl, and the album jacket features a die-cut “logo stencil insert” lettered in the My Chemical Romance classic font. Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge spawned three Top Ten Alternative Rock radio hits; “I’m Not OK (I Promise),” “Helena” and “The Ghost of You” and sold more than two million copies worldwide.

Don’t Pretend That You Know Me (Ghost) Garage rock may have incubated in America, but like jazz and soul, the genre has spread far and wide. Italy’s answer to ’60s revivalism is the Mojomatics. MojoMatt (vocals, guitar and harmonica) and DavMatic (drums and percussion) make the most of exuberant mouth harp, R&B soaked guitar and lean, mean drums. Songs such as “Wait a While” and “Miss Me When I’m Gone” sizzle with energy that will shake, rattle and roll fans of the Hives or similar nostalgia-

Funeral Party Whittier band Funeral Party is recording an album at the Mars Volta’s studio for a release in April. In the meantime you can find their threesong Bootleg EP at digital retailers now.

familiarize with. What I’m trying to say is, if you support this show, I’ll give you a free karmic pass for buying that Metro Station CD at any point this year.

The Maine Dec. 19 & 20 @ Chain Reaction Normally, I’d never endorse a band that had as awful of touring mates as these guys do. I mean, Good Charlotte, strike one. Boys Like Girls, two. We the Kings, ehh … foul ball, I guess. Metro Station? Strike three in the ninth inning of the World Series levels of fail. But be that as it may, I’m still finding their pop-punk stylings to be something of a guilty pleasure. While I grow a bit loathsome of the whole dance party punk scene that revolves around Glamour Kills tees and ugly neon-colored Dunks, I take some solace in at least knowing these boys weren’t signed because they have a pretty frontman.

more numbers that pay homage to the Beasties: “Shut Your Mush” and “Sliding Doors.” Grade: B —Kevin Wierzbicki Romance Ain’t Dead is currently available. CONTINUED

«

starts Romance Ain’t Dead with a Beastie Boys rip-off called “Eddy Fresh” is a mystery; the song sends the message that there isn’t anything original going on. That message, fortunately, is misleading, and the party quickly gets started with the punk flavored “Oh No You Didn’t.” “Don’t Pity Me” is an

Get your Kleenex boxes handy and prepare to have the innermost depths of your soul explored, with or without your consent. Thoughtful, introspective, sometimes downright haunting, Kensrue’s vocals effortlessly convey his rawest emotions and, though layered with existential angst, never fail to

with ‘rock ’n’ roll’ in their title that don’t suck.” I Hate New Music (Backbeat, $22.95) is available now.

Campus Circle | 17

bent bands. The 12 tracks are infused with a voodoo stew of catchy hooks and to-the-point structures (Only two cuts cross the three-minute mark.). Head-bopping “Losin’ Time” sounds like the Byrds covering the Seeds, while craggy “Clean My Sins” evokes the Jam circa 1982. While never losing their garage rock posture, the Mojomatics also slip in blues and country influences into pendulant pieces “Askin’ for a Better Circumstance” and two-stepping “Stars Above.” Grade:B —Doug Simpson Don’t Pretend That You Know Me is currently available.

Third Eye Blind Red Star (Sony) The wait is over. Red Star, the newest digital three-tracked EP released by San Francisco natives Third Eye Blind in anticipation of the band’s fourth studio album, Ursa Major, comes out as a testament to Stephan Jenkins’ full recovery from writer’s block. Red Star features “NonDairy Creamer,” the first single from Ursa Major, and a live version of “Why Can’t You Be.” Grade: A —Farnaz Youshei Red Star is currently available.


18 | Campus Circle

[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

live show reviews

Natashia Desianto

music

Iran’s “King” Raam of Hypernova wails “Viva la Resistance.”

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Dec. 2 @ Henry Fonda Theater Do you like rock music? Would you put your life on the line for it? Imagine you had to use an onstage pseudonym, not to sound cool, but to avoid persecution. For Iran’s Hypernova, this is the reality in their homeland. Such bold passion comes across in their brooding, New York-tinged indie rock. Singer “King” Raam begins the set as an automaton, somewhat reminiscent of a beat poet as his comrades slam around him like anxious, circling vultures. But as the tension builds to the climax of their set, he joins in on guitar, throwing himself more and more into the infectious momentum that spreads like wildfire to the enthusiastic crowd. “Viva la Resistance” is particularly powerful, Raam wailing in his baritone “I will not bow down to your god, this is not who I am.” Mike Ness is a flawless performer. Scandalous, considering the context. They close out the night with the catchy and punctuated “Fairytales,” a grim anthem of phoniness or irony. about jailbait lust that culminates in a Before we could cry out for a Social D ferocious and chaotic finale, members song, he gave in and ended on “Down Here careening about the stage in one final frenetic (With the Rest of Us)” and returned for an outburst. encore session, throwing on that hat and —Natasha Desianto completing the night with “I Fought the Law.” —China Bialos China Bialos

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Social Distortion. But then, it’s a detour from the punk rock that’s carried his career, the opportunity to be an all-American figure, singing outlaw love songs. Even this detour draws Los Angeles’ few rockabilly kids and greasers out from hiding, though, and prompts fights just as well as it’ll draw a circle pit while a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Don’t Think Twice” is playing. Forty-six-year-old Ness is a flawless performer, his best performances mimicking some of his best recordings – for two, “Crime Don’t Pay” and “The Devil in Miss Jones,” off 1999’s Cheating at Solitaire. These days he’s shunning drugs and praising Obama; he’s also slick as his hair and speaks and moves with finesse, posing with his Les Paul the way it’s meant to be held, playing with the authenticity and heart you’d hope for from such a man. Even in his cowboy hat he squinted with a fury lacking the slightest bit

Mike Ness Dec. 4 @ The El Rey It’s sort of curious that Mike Ness would tour as a solo artist these days, seeing as he’s now the only original remaining member of

music dvd | review The Who At Kilburn: 1977 (Image Entertainment) This double DVD set is a must-have for any fan of the Who. Disc one is their 1977 Gaumont State Theatre concert recorded in Kilburn, North London for Jeff Stein’s The Kids Are Alight documentary, while disc two contains footage from a 1969 London Coliseum show. Although the band hadn’t played live in about a year, the Kilburn show captured

Over the Rhine Dec. 6 @ The Troubadour Over the Rhine, a husband-and-wife duo from the Cincinnati neighborhood that is the

them at their best. Roger Daltrey in an itty bitty shirt and bell bottom jeans swings his mic cord; Pete Townshend jumps, kicks, leaps, slides around the stage; John Entwistle always seems to be cool, calm and collected as his fingers move at lightning speed over his bass; Keith Moon – in one of his final performances – twirls his drumsticks as eyes are drawn to his bedazzled satiny outfit. The energetic set includes “Baba O’Reilly,” “Summertime Blues” and “Behind Blue Eyes.” Grade: A—Yuri Shimoda At Kilburn: 1977 is currently available.

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band’s namesake, blew audiences away, performing songs from their 20-year recording career, including songs from the newly released The Trumpet Child. With startlingly good compositions in hautehonky “Don’t Wait for Tom” (a taunting, bluesy lil’ ditty which may or may not be an homage to Mr. Waits), the swanky, swingin’ “I’m On a Roll,” a country-jazz hotel lobby standard in “I Don’t Wanna Waste Your Time,” the bossanova-tinged “Nothing Is Innocent,” the New Orleans-steeped “Who’m I Kiddin’ But Me” and the title track, a selfdescribed meeting point between the white American hymnal and the black American jazz waltz, the album is a welcome page in the great songbook of Americana. Starting out as a quartet, Linford Detweiler – who, with his foppish hair, indie glasses and long-drawn, Ohio-paced storytelling musical interludes – evokes a soulful, literary Garrison Keillor for the hipster masses (well, those hipster masses with a penchant for ragtime, anyway) and Karin Bergquist, a sex kitten with the pipes – sounding a mix of Joni Mitchell, Patsy Cline, Emmylou Harris and Suzanne Vega – to back it up, have got 17 albums under their belt, toured as members of the Cowboy Junkies, opened for Bob Dylan, were named as one of Paste magazine’s top 100 songwriters of all time and are not afraid to record Christmas holiday albums. They blend all the best America has to offer – folk, jazz, gospel, ragtime, R&B, country, blues – with respect, dignity, love and talent ... and about each and every instrument under the sun. The lingering effect is one of vintage tunes that manage to be just refreshing enough to wake us from our 21st century stupor. —Rayhané S. Sanders


[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

spin cycle | l.a. dj culture

Campus Circle | 19

music

FRIDAY, DEC. 19 Andy Caldwell @ Melodic’s Christmas Party Ecco, 1640 N. Cahuenga Blvd.,. Hollywood 21+/9 p.m./$15 I’m not sure if I have ever witnessed an Andy Caldwell set that I haven’t enjoyed. And as one of OM Records premier artists he has access to all of the best funky house jams to keep the body moving. This is Melodic’s first annual holiday party, and to share the love, they have decided to give a $5 discount to those who bring a toy worth $10. Listen to fantastic music, dance your bootie off and leave with a good feeling. There’s nothing better, in my opinion.

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 17 Scion House Party Vanguard, 6021 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles 21+/10 p.m./FREE with RSVP at scion.com/houseparty Scion has been killing it lately (in a good way) with their free house parties at Vanguard. They spare no expense on guests who have included 2 Many DJs, the Count and Sinden, Midnight Juggernauts and Van She Tech. This installment features the dirty electro grittiness of Fake Blood, making his debut here in Los Angeles. Also part of the lineup is New York’s exceedingly cool Tommie Sunshine, along with sets by Scottie B (Unruly) and Royal Rumble. Again this event is totally free as always, which considering the talent, is simply amazing. Just head on over to the above Web site to RSVP and sign up for future events.

MONDAY, DEC 22 Monday Night Social Nacional, 1645 Wilcox Ave.,. Hollywood; budbrothers.com 21+/10 p.m./$10 with RSVP before 11 p.m., $15 after/$20 without RSVP The Monday Night Social has been bumpin’ for 12 years now, with guests covering the entire electronic musical spectrum. If you haven’t experienced a MNS yet, there’s no better time to check it out than their annual Christmas party. DJ/producer Colette is set to headline with her funky Chicago house grooves and sultry vocals. Jesse Brooks is also on the bill and is sure to get the party started. If for some reason you can’t make this one, MNS goes down every Monday of the year, and the artists are always great. I’ll definitely keep you posted with future happenings. How the Grouch Stole —Ryan McWhorter

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Dec. 20 @ Terrace Restaurant, Pasadena Catch Living Legends! The Grouch and Eligh will perform solo sets as well as a combined G&E set, along with DJ Fresh. Also on the bill are the Bayliens, and hiphop violinist Paul Dateh will open.

To submit an event for consideration, e-mail spincycle@campuscircle.net.

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20 | Campus Circle

[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

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tech bytes | review iPIG (Speakal) It’s cute, quality and dynamic. What could be a more perfect holiday gift? Shaped like a round pig’s face the size of a bowling ball, anyone with an iPod, iPod touch, MP3 player or iPhone will enjoy this docking station and loudspeaker. Just plug in the iPig, stick in your iPod, and you’ve got music that can get loud enough to entertain guests and subtle enough to play while relaxing at home. Plus, it charges while it plays. Perhaps the most attractive feature of the product is its volume control; simply touch the pig’s right ear to turn up the volume and its left ear to turn it down. With black speakers for eyes and four little legs as sturdy bases, its design adds a little extra something to the other, plainer models of iPod speakers. Grade: A —Paige Parker For more information, visit speakal.com.

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[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

Hi Lucia, I dated a great girl for three to four months about two years ago. We have stayed in touch over the past two years. She contacted me on my birthday, and I decided I wanted to get to know her really well as friends first this time around. We have been talking on the phone and writing over the past two months now. Recently she was in town to visit friends, and I told her I wanted to see her. She never stopped by but called the next day and said she did in fact come by, but it was the “wrong apartment.” My heart tells me otherwise, as she has been here before. About two weeks later my best friend died in a violent car crash. When I was discussing this with her and how much I loved him, she did not offer any support or concern or sympathy even though she knew him. After reading your interesting articles on yellow/orange/red flags, I am curious to see if you believe this is something to be concerned about. My heart keeps telling me that these two things are a “bad sign,” and I should not pursue this further. —David Hi David, Hell yeah, this is something to be concerned about. She lies and is not compassionate. Do those sound like good qualities for a friend, girlfriend or whomever? Your relationship ended two years ago for a reason. Let sleeping dogs lie and move on. Hi Lucia, I would like to know how the

Do you think he’ll ever try to come back? —Cassie Dear Cassie, He will probably try to come back at some point, but why would you want him? Anyone who isn’t willing to follow through on dates four nights in a row is obviously not that interested. Move on.

BY LUCIA average woman would react to going on a date with a guy and finding out on the date that he had a concealed pistol. I am not law enforcement or security, but I am licensed by the state to carry a Lucia firearm for personal protection. I never want to worry about my own safety or that of the ones I love despite the neighborhood we may be in. —Ken Hi Ken, I was in the army, so I am very familiar and comfortable with weapons, however, I would not want to be around a concealed weapon. You just never know what may happen, because I’m assuming it’s loaded. Therefore, I would think the average woman would probably also not feel comfortable.

Hi Lucia, I just told my girlfriend (We’re both first loves.) that I loved her. I felt it, meant it and wanted to share it. Now, all she does is want to hear me say it all the time and reminds me how long it’s been since I said it. This pushes me away, and now I don’t feel like saying it when she asks or reminds me. Is she too needy or am I over reacting? —Scott Hi Scott, She’s too needy. Tell her, “I really like it that you are so secure that you don’t need to hear me say I love you all the time. It makes me love you even more.” Say it with a wink and a smile, and hopefully she’ll get it!

Dear Lucia, I met a guy at a tractor pull and started dating about a month later. We dated for about two weeks and really had a lot in common! He said he really liked me and even wanted to come meet my parents. He planned a date four nights in a row, didn’t make it any of those nights but continued to talk to me. Next thing I know, he’s missing. I haven’t heard from him in a week! I’ve tried to call and text him and get nothing back! He works about 97 percent of the time, and we live over an hour apart, so I think he’s done with me.

curtain call

inner circle

‘BOB’S HOLIDAY OFFICE PARTY’

Now-Dec. 21 @ The Zephyr Theatre BY MIKE BUZZELLI WHEN BOB FINHEAD (COproducer/co-writer Rob Elk) throws a Christmas party in the small town of Neuterburg, Iowa, a drunken bacchanal ensues, and deep dark secrets bubble to the surface. The titular insurance agent yearns for life in the big city but can’t tear himself away from his odd assortment of clients/friends — until the eve of his annual Christmas party, when an old acquaintance offers him the deal of a lifetime. Bob must decide between Ann Randolph, Rob Elk and Joe Keyes in pursuing his dreams or staying “Bob’s Holiday Office Party” beside the people he knows and – despite their idiosyncrasies – loves. The show is in its 13th year and is becoming an annual holiday tradition for people looking for a laugh. Ed Krieger

the art of love |

Campus Circle | 21

The Zephyr Theatre is located at 7456 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles. For more information, visit bobsofficeparty.com. Write to Lucia at theartoflove.net. Read an excerpt from Lucia’s Lessons of Love at lessonsoflove.net. Listen to Lucia live every Sunday at 3 p.m. PST on latalkradio.com. Remember: Love inspires, empowers, uplifts and enlightens.

comedy | B Y

MIKE BUZZELLI

‘AAH! SCROOGE MUST DIE!

Now-Jan. 10, 2009 @ The Ivy Substation

essential l.a. | cool hot spots

SILVER LAKE ART CRAFT & VINTAGE FLEA MARKET

THE FOLKS AT ART GALLERY Ghettogloss (2380 Glendale Blvd.) thought that Silver Lake, being a cultural epicenter of Los Angeles, deserved a flea market, so they gave it a shot with this holiday craft fair. Highlights of the handpicked and local vendors include Chubby Bunny, offering handmade and vintage jewelry such as novelty plastic earrings ($5), charm necklaces ($12-$15) and name-plated rainbow heart charms. They also have handmade cloth wallets and a select few vintage clothing items. Jill K. in LA makes adorable handmade holiday cards, including scratch ’n’ sniff varieties and sets of

Gina Quattrochi

B Y G I N A Q U AT T R

handcrafted tea bags ($4) – a great stocking stuffer idea. Other promising booths OCHI offer hand-knitted scarves and beanies, Peruvian jewelry (including rings for $5) and embroidered boots. There’s also the requisite used/vintage clothing booth, manned by two overwhelmingly hipster dudes in dark shades, which has a few surprisingly cute dresses ($30-$40) and vintage luggage. While it’s nothing spectacular and you may not find anything, it’s a nice way to spend a Saturday or Sunday. The relaxed vibe, DIY attitude and down-to-earth vendors (for the most part), coupled with its close proximity to Silver Lake Coffee (2388 Glendale Blvd.) and other bars and restaurants,

Amber Koehler

Dec. 20-21 @ Citibank Parking Lot (Silver Lake Blvd. & Glendale Blvd.)

A PSYCHOTIC EBENEZER Scrooge (a delightfully absurd Scott Harris) is “Bah Humbugging” his way through Christmas in a new work by playwright/director Angela Berliner. Berliner pours a tall glass of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol and mixes in her own craziness, adding some background to the malicious malcontent. She depicts Scrooge as a raving sociopath, but finally answers a nagging question: Why is Scrooge so miserly? The Scott Harris and Elora Dannon in “Aah! Scrooge Must Die!” answer is surprising. It’s an odd take on a family classic. This version is not suitable for most children; the play is filled with scatological vulgarity. Some scenes are very juvenile and may not sit well with more refined theatergoers, but the talented cast is able to pull it off. Clearly, the actors are having as much fun as the audience.

allow you to make a day out of it. You can definitely find a few small and unique gifts for friends and family. There’s only one weekend left before Christmas, so drop by between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. and support your local artists. Limited free parking is available. The fair will be back again in midJanuary.

The Ivy Substation is located at 9070 Venice Blvd, Culver City. For more information, visit the actorsgang.com.


22 | Campus Circle

[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

10 spot |

advertorial

HOLIDAY

gift guide 

iPig

The best docking station with amazing technology and unsurpassed sound quality. “Cute just got powerful!” Enter coupon code: CAMPMAG01 to receive $40 off! (877) 355.5777 www.speakal.com

Record Surplus A huge selection used CDs, vinyl, DVDs and even VHS. Great prices and a knowledgeable staff make Record Surplus a favorite with music and film collectors and they pay cash for your used music and movies. (310) 478.4217 11609 W. Pico Blvd. www.recordsurplusla.com

BY FREDERICK MINTCHELL

SATURDAY, DEC. 20

Merry Merry Movie Laemmle’s Playhouse 7, 673 East Colorado Blvd., Pasadena; laemmle.com

A free screening of Jim Carrey’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas, a free concert after the film and free holiday treats and surprises. Even the Grinch couldn’t resist. 10 a.m. $10, students $8.50. THURSDAY, DEC. 18

Cocktails 2-Holidaze Hipcooks West, 2833 S. Robertson Blvd., Los Angeles; hipcooks.com Learn to create fun and exciting drinks, perfect for the holiday season and festive nibbles to match. Also Friday. 7 p.m.-10 p.m. $65.

SATURDAY, DEC. 20

Winter Wonderland & Snow Run

Caddy Concepts Perfect for laundry, groceries, toys, sports, picnics, the beach and more. The Caddy Concepts Caddy is ideal for that college student on your holiday gift list! (877) CADDY12 www.caddyconcepts.com

American Vintage Clothing A great selection of vintage clothing with new items arriving daily! Save big bucks by shopping at American Vintage and find a great outfit at a fraction of the cost! 7377 Melrose Ave. (323) 852.0969 6529 Hollywood Blvd. (323) 461.0068 1707 W. Sunset Blvd. (213) 413.1945

iFLY Hollywood

Experience human body flight! Perfect for kids and adults of all ages. Indoor skydiving makes the perfect gift for that thrill-seeker on your list. Gift certificates available. (818) 985.IFLY Universal City Walk www.iflyhollywood.com

U-Tan Los Angeles USC’s premiere tanning salon offering the best technology and a variety of indoor tanning options. Many different tanning packages available. Call to get the package that is right for you! (213) 747.8182 3163 S. Hoover St. (Inside University Village) www.utanla.com

Del Amo Park, 703 E. Del Amo Blvd., Carson Who says you can’t sled in Los Angeles? You can on this snow covered hill today. Food and entertainment include free hot dogs and hot chocolate for the first 100 participants. Noon-5 p.m. FREE.

SUNDAY, DEC. 21

A Christmas Story ArcLight Sherman Oaks, 15301 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks (818) 5017033;experience.arclightcinema s.com Although you have probably seen one of the countless showings over the years on TBS, now’s your chance to see it on the big screen. 11 a.m. Also at ArcLight Hollywood (21+) on Monday at 8 p.m.

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 24

49th Annual L.A. County Holiday Celebration Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles; lacountyarts.org/holiday.html

This six-hour holiday music extravaganza will feature 1,200 performers in 45 groups from around the world covering a variety of genres of music, dance and costumes. 3 p.m.-9 p.m. FREE.

THURSDAY, DEC. 25

laspectacular.com/2009 These original performances combine ancient technique with modern technology involving hundreds of talented dancers and musicians, original scores, live orchestra and custom-designed digital backdrops. Through Jan. 4. Tix start at $35.

Christmas Skate Pasadena Ice Skating Center, 310 East Green St., Pasadena (626) 578-0801; skatepasadena.com If you need something to do after you’ve had your fill of opening presents and drinking eggnog, PISC has special holiday hours today. 1 p.m.-8 p.m. $10.

THURSDAY, JAN. 1

Tournament of Roses Parade

SATURDAY, DEC. 27

tournamentofroses.com/rosep arade The 120th annual flowery extravaganza kicks off the day’s festivities before USC takes on Penn State later in the day. Gaze upon spirited marching bands and floral floats.

Dancing with the Stars: The Tour

event pick

Staples Center, 1111 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles; aeglive.com You’ve seen them on TV – now see it live. With Lance Bass, Toni Braxton, Maurice Greene, Marlee Matlin and many more! 7:30 p.m. Tix start at $49.50.

Quake Walk Franklin Canyon Park, Beverly Hills; lamountains.com Get information about surviving “The Big One” while exploring real earthquake faults up close and personal. 11 a.m.-1 p.m. FREE.

TUESDAY, DEC. 30

Chinese New Year Spectacular

‘THE NUTCRACKER’ Dec. 20-21 @ UCLA, Royce Hall

If you’ve never seen the seasonal classic, get in on this

Southern California tradition. With original set design by Los Angeles’ own Catherine Kanner, the presents and parties bring holiday cheer. We don’t have snow; at least we have “The Nutcracker.”

site pick

TomsShoes.com. The line is styled after Alpargatas, an TOMSSHOES.COM Argentine shoe. For Want to buy a every pair that’s comfortable pair of sold, one will be shoes without given to a child in fighting the holiday need around the crowds while doing a world. good deed? Visit —Frederick Mintchell

STRIP CLUB NOW HIRING DANCERS No Experience Necessary/ Make Cash Daily Must be 18+ For more information call (818) 890-7777 or log onto www.VintageStripClub.com

Pasadena Civic Auditorium, 300 E. Green St., Pasadena (626) 449-7360;

PENIS ENLARGEMENT

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To submit an event for consideration, e-mail calendar@campuscircle.net.

DR. JOEL KAPLAN FDA APPROVED Medical vacuum pumps. Gain 1"-3" permanently. Resolve impotence. Viagra, Testosterone, Cialis. FREE information and brochures. (619) 2947777, www.getbiggertoday.com


[DEC. 17 - DEC. 23 ’08]

the sports wanderer

inner circle

TEN POINTS TO A CIRCLE B Y PA R I M A L M . R O H I T

1) New Lakers Flagship After more than three decades of broadcasting games over 570 KLAC, Lakers games will be heard over 710 ESPN Radio as of next season.

2) Clipper Miles

6) Brown gets first hat trick. Kings forward Dustin Brown earned his first career hat trick in a 6-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues Dec. 12. Alexander Frolov and Anze Kopitar (twice) also scored.

7) Mobley’s heart forces

retirement. Ex-Clipper Darius Miles may return to his former team, as he Former Clipper Cuttino Mobley worked out with the squad in Los announced his retirement Dec. 11 after Parimal M. Rohit Angeles last week. Clippers general he was diagnosed with hypertrophic manager and head coach Mike cardiomyopathy. Mobley, 33, was Dunleavy says a decision may not be made until traded from the Clippers to New York Nov. 21. mid-January.

3) Sai-onara Saito Dodgers closer Takashi Saito became a free agent Dec. 12, when the team opted not to tender him a contract.

4) Five Halos The Angels tendered contracts to all five of its arbitration-eligible players: Chone Figgins, Ervin Santana, Mike Napoli, Maicer Izturis and Robb Quinlan.

5) 160 Million Dollar Man Free agent Mark Teixeira was reportedly offered more than $160 million over eight years to stay with the Angels, according to the team.

8) Blake returns, Loretta hops on board. The Dodgers retained Casey Blake ($17.5 million, three years) and signed Mark Loretta ($1.25 million, one year), according to Major League Baseball.

9) K-Rod bolts to Big Apple. Closer Francisco Rodriguez ended his Angel career when he reportedly agreed to a three-year, $37 million deal with the New York Mets last week.

10) Circle That Quote “Obviously I hope to play NBA minutes some time this year.” —Former Laker Coby Karl

Campus Circle | 23


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Campus Circle Newspaper Vol. 18 Issue 48  

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