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Ironically, director Taylor Hackford ("Devil’s Advocate") had to edit a hot love scene between Meg Ryan and Russell Crowe when preview audiences objected to a wife cheating on her husband while he was being held hostage.
WEAK-END PLANNER
Things To Do While You’re
Nursing Your Hangover
In this edition, which comes all too soon after the HITS office Christmas/Hannukkah party, the emphasis is on "Weak." Expect next to nothing from the atrophied and booze-soaked brains of the contributors, and we guarantee you won't be disappointed.

THIS WEEK'S NEW MOVIES
A Slippery Slope
"Vertical Limit":
If you liked "Cliffhanger," presumably you'll enjoy this tale of a one-time mountaineer (Chris O'Donnell) battling the forbidding Himalayan peak K2 to save his sister (Robin Tunney), trapped on an icy peak with her fellow climbers. Got to admit, the coming attractions seem pretty kinetic, thanks to the direction of Martin Campbell, who showed the same sort of affinity for derring-do in the James Bond movie, "Goldeneye." Rated five sticks of dynamite for a number of mountain-top explosions.

"Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon": Ang Lee's martial arts saga seems to be one of the few movies to live up to its pre-release Oscar buzz, with action star Chow Yun Fat even garnering some support in the Best Actor category. Lee brings a spiritual contemplation to the action genre as Chow's Li Mu Bai tracks the murderer of his master and pines after the athletic Yu Shu Lien (played Michelle Yeoh, generating her own award heat). An homage to the Hong Kong chop-socky with a high-brow philosophic bent, "Crouching Tiger" could turn out to be this season's art-film crossover.

"Proof of Life": This is the movie which generated pre-release buzz after the illicit, still ongoing affair between Meg Ryan and new superstar Russell Crowe that developed on the set. The "Casablanca"-like love triangle involves a doomed idealist, a world-weary cynic and the woman who has to choose between them. After a wealthy American engineer supervising the building of a dam in South America is kidnapped, his wife and a hostage negotiator tries to secure his release. Ironically, director Taylor Hackford ("Devil's Advocate") had to edit a hot love scene between Ryan and Crowe when preview audiences objected to a wife cheating on her husband while he was being held hostage.

"Dungeons & Dragons": In the wake of the Internet, where you can shift identities and take on different identities in chat rooms, it would seem the once-popular "Dungeons & Dragons" has gone the way of the Cabbage Patch Doll. This fantasy thriller with Jeremy Irons, Thora Birch and Marlon Wayans looks to take advantage of whatever pop culture clout is left in the role-playing fantasy game. While we're waiting for "Conan the Barbarian II," what's next? "Instant Message: The Movie"? —Roy Trakin

PRESIDENTIAL FACT OF THE WEEK
Calvin Coolidge, our 30th president, was born on the Fourth of July, 1872, in Plymouth Notch, VT. He was so famous for saying so little that a White House dinner guest made a bet that she could get the president to say more than two words. She told the president of her wager. His reply: "You lose." Best Anagram Of His Name: Dog call invoice.

WEB SITES OF THE WEEK
LATribe.com on the ‘60s: Freaks Trump Hippies
The lifestyle e-zine LATribe.com's music section revisits the ‘60s today, in recognition of the twentieth anniversary of John Lennon's murder. Rather than a nostalgia-fest, however, the site's recollections are focused on the enduring musical and cultural legacy of the period. In addition to a retrospective on the late Beatle, the site features an interview with Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek and comments by author Barney Hoskyns of Rocksbackpages.com. There's also a superb overview of L.A. rock of the period—notably the contributions of the Byrds, Doors, Buffalo Springfield, Love, Zappa and Beefheart—by editor Willie Aron, who claims the city's musical "freaks" had a greater impact on subsequent generations than their jam-happy hippie brethren to the North. There are also, as always, features on up-and-coming local artists. LATribe is one of the few online sites to come close to the authoritative rock-history approach of Mojo—it's a feast for musicheads.
Simon Glickman

Buzzwhack.com: Do You Netspeak?
Are you a buzzwhacker? Chances are you might be, or at least you aspire to be one. A buzzwhacker, as defined by www.buzzwhack.com, is "A person who receives some degree of pleasure in bursting the bubbles of the pompous." Get in the know about the new Net terms and impress your friends at the same time. Check out their Buzzword Compliant Dictionary, which allows you to sound more cutting-edge than you really are. If you are still reading this and do not know what a vortal is, let me be the first to let you know that you are not with the dot-conomy. —Paul Karlsen

QUOTE OF THE WEEK
"One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that a cat has only nine lives." —Mark Twain

GUY ITH THE GOGGLES' GAME OF THE WEEK
GREEN BAY –3 over Detroit
Gol-dangit—I'm hotter than two rats humpin' in a li'l sock. This here Black & Blue Division game is a sure dang thang. Tempertures are gonna be below 30, with possible snow. Brett Favre and them dang cheeseheads don't lose in these here cold-weather games. Favre is 25-0 at home when game-time temperture is 34 or below. (Record to date: 4-2)

YOUR WEAK-END WEATHER
More Dependable Than The Guy In The Goggles, But Less Profitable
In Los Angeles, expect Saturday to be mostly cloudy, with highs in the mid-60s and lows in the upper 50s. Sunday should be rainy, or at least as rainy as it gets in the desert, with temps about five degrees cooler. The precipitation will keep the air quality in the good range. In New York City, tomorrow should be a nice sunny day, with highs in the upper-30s, lows in the upper-20s. Sunday looks cloudy with a good chance for a mixture of snow and rain is, with temperatures hovering in the mid-30s. Just be glad you don't live in Butte, Montana. They'll get a lot of snow over the weekend, with temperatures on Saturday ranging from a high of 27 to a low of 0. Sunday's high should be in the single digits, with lows in the minuses. Wind chills will be so low that we can't print them. —David Simutis, apprentice meteorologist

WEATHER EXPLANATION OF THE WEEK
What Causes Fog, Besides Hangovers?
When nighttime skies are clear and there's very little wind, heat radiates from the ground, cooling the ground and the air next to it. Heavier cold air flows into low places, such as valleys. Fog forms when air cools to its dew point. —David Simutis, apprentice meteorologist

"FACTS OF LIFE" SUMMARY FOR THE WEEK
Tootie's passion for Jermaine Jackson worries her friends, especially when she receives his personal invitation to a concert.

SEASONS BLEATINGS
"The 12 Days Of HITSmas"
Of course, the merry elves of hitsdailydouble have a special take on holiday songs. Below are a dozen selections sure to liven up your office party, the arduous drive to Grandma's or to simply add some zing to Midnight Mass:

  1. The Rugburns, "I Hate Fucking Christmas": Who needs sugarplums, when you can have visions of sodomized Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles dancing through your head?
  2. The TvTv$, "Daddy Drank Our Christmas Money": It's like the Audio Ghost Of Christmas Past. Who can't relate to "Every year we decorate the tree with old beer cans/'cause they're the only ornaments we have?"
  3. Mojo Nixon and the Toadliquors, "Trim Yo' Tree": Much like Santa, Mojo is jolly and has a beard. Unlike St. Nick, Mojo likes to say the word "tallywhacker." Whose lap would you rather sit on?
  4. Deadbolt, "I'm The One Who Gunned Down Santa Claus": The scariest surf/psychobilly band in the world weaves a chilling, sordid tale of the demise of the adulturous, Uzi-toting Kris Kringle. Added bonus, the song comes off "91Xmas," which you, too, can find for a quarter at one of the fine porn shops along Hollywood Boulevard.
  5. The Sterilles, "Mrs. Claus Has Menopause": It takes a sassy girl-group to explain why the big guy spends so much time with the elves… "Santa doesn't get it at night."
  6. Bad Mood Zeus, "What's Santa Stuffin'?": The Scotch-guzzling old elf is expecting more than cookies and milk upon his arrival at your house.
  7. Spinal Tap, "Christmas With The Devil": The parallels between Santa and Satan are uncanny. Both wear red. Both have names with the letters N, S, T and two As. Have you ever seen the in the same place at the same time?
  8. Fish Karma, "Rockin' And Rollin' With Little Baby Jesus": Christian or not, you gotta admit the Savior kicks ass on electric guitar.
  9. Red Aunts, "Little Drummer Bitch": Keep in mind, Prozac and Midol do make great stocking stuffers.
  10. Pansy Division, "Homo Christmas": "Don we now our gay apparrel…" especially those deluxe red leather chaps. Hot.
  11. Mystery Science Theater 3000 Cast, "Let's Have A Patrick Swayze Christmas": The very line "We'll decorate a barstool/and stand around and sing" makes the flick "Santa Claus Conquers The Martians" a victory for boozehounds the world over.
  12. SuperDeluxe, "All I Wanted Was A Skateboard": What we HITS employees wish we could afford to buy with our Xmas bonuses.
    —Donna DeChristopher

 

 

 

FANS WILLING AND ABEL TO RALLY ROUND THE WEEKND
Dept. of unintended consequences (12/1a)
VAUGHN'S FIRST MOVE: MATTERA TO THE TOWER
A company with no corner offices (12/1a)
U.K. MEET THE MANAGERS
Who's hot in Blighty? (12/1a)
RON PERRY: SUPERCHARGING THE BIG RED MACHINE
Hoodie man doin' work (12/1a)
SPOTIFY GIFT-WRAPS
THE YEAR IN MUSIC
How Swede it is. (12/1a)
RAINMAKERS 2020
Bring your umbrella.
GRAMMY OUTLIERS
Mulling possible surprises.
ZOOM THANKSGIVING
We're virtually stuffing ourselves.
TRUMP'S LAWSUITS
He's lost 25 out of 26, and so tired of winning!
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