The Des Moines Register from Des Moines, Iowa on September 25, 1998 · Page 13
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The Des Moines Register from Des Moines, Iowa · Page 13

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Des Moines, Iowa
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Friday, September 25, 1998
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Page 13
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Tops on TV In "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Season Opener," Sabrina (Melissa Joan Hart) is torn between two potential dates on "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch." Jfe Xnm ARC V - W y Bar w Daily TV listings Page 7M 1 wi 'VI. . M)u3V y eljc Hcs Hloincs He jistcr Weekend Marjorie Larson is buried in books as an organizer for the Planned Parenthood Book Sale. Page 6M Friday September 25, 1908 Jeanne Abbott, Features Editor (515)284029 KathyBerdan, Today Editor (515)2843207 5M Outer i rait 0 Info pn the edge to give ' you the edge. i v J i -' . i Fabulous prizes on Dave's Web site. r a, Can you top this? The David Letterman Web site has a new "write your own Top 10" contest every week. You can win fabulous prizes such as cheap "Late Show" mouse pads. Just check out At the site, you'll also find a database of every Top 10 list printed. It's searchable by keyword. The site says it's not responsible for crashes caused by keyword "Clinton." Here's a part of last week's list: the Top 10 Little-Known Perks of Breaking the Home Run Record. Free personal Kenneth Starr investigation. Can ask for Gary Coleman's autograph without fear of being punched. $1.25 off Denny's Grand Slam Breakfast. Go to seed "' " Help preserve the past by harvesting prairie seeds at the Sand Hill Prairie in Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt, half an hour northeast of Des Moines. For info, call John F. Patton at 399-2557. Sow it goes. I? : Just in time for Halloween. Haunted hints You'll find everything from "Ghostly Elusions" to "Terri-bleiThings To Touch and Smell" in the book "How To Haunt a House." Written by Dan Witkowski and published by Random Hoiise, the book has tons of ideas just in time for Halloween; planning. It's available at Target stores. Terror tales Hey, kids. Want to give your folks a scare this Halloween? See if you can get "Goose-bumps" author R.L. Stine to be your English teacher for a day..- Winner of the Brain Juice Tenjfying Title Contest will get a visit to his or her school fronf Stine, the best-selling children's book author whose popularity with kids is not always welcomed by parents. To enter the contest, you need to think up an scary title fora new Goosebumps book. You must be between ages 6-12 tjo enter. Send an original story title along with your nameraddress, phone number) age and school to: Brain Juie Terrifying Title Contest, Box 7012, Stacy, Minn. 55078-701?! Entries are due Oct. 8. Do you have something for Outer Limit? Call 284-8207 or email berdanknews.dmreg.com Christina Ricci and Ivan Sergei star in the comedy drama "The Opposite of Sex." 'Opposite of Sex' is positively funny At The Movies The script is smart and sharp and the characters are mostly believable. Joan Bunke Joan Bunke gives three stars to "Deja Vu." Page 8M Christina Ricci makes the leap from weird child roles to odd-teen-ager status with a ter rific and frequently funny performance in Don Roos' wittily written and directed "The Opposite of Sex," a comedy drama with energy, a waggish sense of humor and enough plot twists to satisfy the greediest of moviegoers. In the process, Ricci displays not only a nice acting range but the gift for sardonic humor Roos' script demands. With mischievous glee, Roos spoofs voice-over narrations, turning the usual conventions upside down. He gives the narrator's job to Ricci's character, Dedee Truitt, a 16-year-old with more attitude than a punk band and the ability to administer put-downs left and right. Dedee has just fled her unhappy life in Creve Coeur, La. (pause for a wisecrack about what y2 "The Opposite of Sex" R, adult sexuality, nudity, language, violence. Varsity. 105 minutes. kind of heart that coeur might be). She has left her hateful mom and the stepfather who has just died and she is bound for Indiana, to scope out the adult world of her very "old" (35) half-brother, Bill Truitt (Martin Donovan). Dedee doesn't mince words. This is no sappy-happy-yappy narration, she declares: "I don't have a heart of gold, and I don't grow one later, OK?" says she. Half-brother Bill is an English teacher, a "homo" and recently bereft of his boyfriend, who died of AIDS and left Bill with a handsome house and plenty of money. Before you can say "plot shift," Dedee turns Bill's life upside down. She vamps his current boyfriend, the very handsome but none-too-bright Matt (Ivan Sergei), whereupon the word "bisexual" bows in. She stirs up trouble with Lucia (Lisa Kudrow), sister of "Tom the dead guy." Lucia is so uptight she just about twangs, but Kudrow, smart actress that she is, skillfully ' underplays her sour-grapes frame of mind. Sample dialogue Dedee: How does anyone get so bitter? Lucia: Observation. New troubles develop for rich, lonely Bill OPPOSITE Turn to Page 8M Joan BunkeAt The Movies Nice Guy, Nice Girl, nice film "Just Write" harks back to 1940s and '50s romantic comedies, the homey, simple, feel-good kind in which everyone except the fantasy hero and heroine is from the real world of gritty, grasping, nasty types. The plot's elementary: Hollywood Nice Guy (poor and ob- hmh scure) a i i meets Holly- "Just Write" wood PG-13, adult Nice Girl situations. (semi- Wynnsong.95 rich and rninutes. They click. They plan a project. They have a misunderstanding, They part. Will they get back together? Why not? This is old Hollywood or maybe early '60s happy-happy TV sitcom stuff. That's not to disparage a well-meaning romance by first-time theater-film director Andrew Gallerani that boasts two charming leads in Sherilyn Fenn, the beauty from "Twin Peaks," and Jeremy Piven, an engaging young actor and former Drake University student whose film premiered at Drake Wednesday in a benefit for the Friends of Drake Arts. Piven plays Harold Mc-Murphy, a Hollywood tour bus driver. Harold loves his job, and he's also mad about young successful actress Amanda Clark (Fenn). Their paths cross; she takes him for a writer; he masquerades his way through the Hollywood "system," and, with the dubious help of brash agent Sidney Stone (JoBeth Williams, in a nice, rough change from her usual "regular" roles) gets a big advance to do a script rewrite. Comes the misunderstanding and Harold has to choose: Will he go back to driving the tour bus or will he sit down at his typewriter (that's how far back this romance goes) and do the rewrite he promised Amanda? It's a supernice romantic comedy, probably destined for early videocassette-hood simply because it's familiar and not full of car chases. Both lead actors do good work: By his agreeable looks, Piven is doomed to play nice guys, and he's learned how to do it well. And Fenn plays Amanda convincingly and looks sensational probably because whoever was in charge of the cameras loved lighting her in the most flattering old-Hollywood way. . "Just Write" Directed by Andrew Gallerani, produced by Heath McLaughlin, screenplay by Stan Williamson; with Sherilyn Fenn, Jeremy Piven, JoBeth Williams, Alex Rocco, Jeffrey Sams and Wallace Shawn. Curb Entertainment International Corp. Joan Bunke can be reached at (515)284-8535 or bunkejnews.dmreg.com " " -iTvt H Jeremy Piven and Sherilyn Fenn in "Just Write." Friday's TV lineup goes retro in theme and style FALL PREVIEW Conniving twins, a slick private eye and a brawling Irish family on the screen. Rkcister Wire Services They're look-alikes who are not alike at all. And it's not the old "Patty Duke Show." Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen are sixth-graders in "Two of a Kind." One likes makeup and A daybyday look at the 1998-99 TV season. Rekha Basifs column will return next week. boys, the other has a heckuva curveball. Friday is a retro sort of night on CBS, too, with Dennis Farina as a Rat Pack era wild private detective on the streets today in "Buddy Faro." Elsewhere, there's another cute kidfamily show with "Brother's Keeper" and an Irish family thing, "Trinity." Here's what's new on the major networks for prime time on Fridays: ABC "Two of a Kind" Stars: Mary-Kate Olsen, Ashley Olsen, Christopher Sieber, Sally Wheeler. Concept: The Olsen twins of "Full House" fame are rambunctious daughters scheming to hook their single, science professor dad (Sieber) up with a nutty nanny (Wheeler). She's perfect: girlish, yet she loves playing poker and watching the Cubs from her balcony overlooking Wrigley Field. BUZZ: It's a bit of a tired theme, but the critics are saying this is a nicely kid-skewed sitcom that's well-crafted even though it's difficult for them to say anything nice about the Olsen twins. "Brother's Keeper" Stars: William Ragsdale, Sean O'Bryan, Justin Cooper. Concept: A stuffy English teacher is doing just fine raising his 8-year-old son on his own. But things get crazy when his pro football-playing brother unexpectedly arrives in town. The brother has just landed a multimillion-dollar contract with the 49ers, but this man-child must live in the custody of a responsible adult. Buzz: A couple of critics say O'Bryan really scores as the happy-go-lucky football player. CBS "Buddy Faro" Stars: Dennis Farina, Frank Whaley, Allison Smith. , Concept: Buddy Faro used to be king of the LA. private eyes. Then he disappeared in 1978. Now he's back, thanks to PREVIEW Turn to Page 8M : pa iiMi fmn mm mm" I k4 T i. i -r .T ' . v. t "Two of a Kind" 7 p.m., ABC Premieres tonight Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen are back on TV as 12-year-old twins being raised by a strict single dad. "Living in Captivity" 7 p.m., Fox Premiered Sept. 11 Three diverse couples are the new residents of a planned community in suburbia. Closet bigotry and political correctness are the rage. "Buddy Faro" 8 p.m., CBS Premieres tonight Dennis Farina is Buddy Faro, a swingin' private eye who disappeared in the late 70s and is back on the scene. "Trinity" 8 p.m., NBC Premieres Oct. 16 An Irish-Catholic family from New York's Hell's Kitchen includes a priest, a cop, a Wall Street exec and an alcoholic. "Brother's Keeper" 8:30 p.m., ABC Premieres tonight A single dad (William Ragsdale) has to care for his son (Justin Cooper) and his irresponsible professional football-playing brother (Sean O'Bryan). Most promising premise "Brother's Keeper" could appeal to young and old while fitting nicely into ABC's TGIF lineup (if they don't scare everybody off with those Olsen twins at 7 p.m.). Justin Cooper, Jim Carrey's son in "Liar Liar," stars as a young boy with two very different male role models in his life. His dad's . a college professor, his uncle is a pro football player. Jane Burns, video and TV writer it x i t i it:

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