In the climactic scene of "Frat House," a 1998 documentary exploring the dark underbelly of college fraternity life, a man is down on all fours inside a dog cage. He chuckles as the frat brothers cover him in beer and Hershey's syrup, shouting profanities. However, the laughs soon turn to tears as the brothers douse the man with lighter fluid, spraying a flame dangerously close to their cowering victim, and instructing the man: "Move your left hand out! He needs an ashtray." That man was Todd Phillips, who today is the top comedy director in Hollywood.
There are plenty of reasons to be excited about the fall. We've got pumpkins, colorful leaves, Halloween, and whatnot. But the hands-down best thing about fall is that this is the season when the "good" movies come out.
The first "Iron Man" boasted a not-so-secret weapon in Robert Downey Jr. reveling in his bad-boy rep as the maverick inventor-industrialist Tony Stark. A combination of Bill Gates, Howard Hughes and Hugh Hefner, Stark had more than his share of character flaws for a superhero. Unlike Bruce Wayne, he couldn't keep his heroics to himself, and unlike Clark Kent, he knew how to party ...
Give Robert Downey Jr. a glass of scotch and a suit made of metal, and lines will form around the block. But cast him as a newspaper columnist who befriends a cello-playing homeless man, and these days the only crowds gathering will be for the movie playing next door.
You might attribute it to 9/11, or simply blame director Joel Schumacher, whose camp take on "Batman" derailed that franchise for several years. But, lately, Hollywood superhero movies have taken themselves awfully seriously.
On Friday, Marvel Entertainment releases "Iron Man," the saga of Tony Stark, a hard-drinking, amoral war-profiteer who redeems himself by donning high-tech armor and trouncing bad guys. Marvel is in the midst of a similar redemption.
• Reese Witherspoon and Jake
Gyllenhaal, sharing an early breakfast at Le Pain Quotidien in Brentwood,
Calif. Walking in with their arms around each other, the casually dressed
pair shared a table for two in the back, ordering coffee, an omelette and fruit. The pair talked and traded sections of the Los Angeles Times at the table. Later that night, the couple was spotted again – this time at West Hollywood's Chateau Marmont where they celebrated Robert Downey Jr.'s 43rd birthday with Cameron Diaz, Gerard Butler, Ben Stiller and more.
On October 18, 1963, Chuck Berry -- rock 'n' roll founding father, guitar hero, "Johnny B. Goode" composer -- walked out of the Federal Medical Center in Springfield, Missouri, where he had served about 18 months on morals charges. He was met by three people: his wife, his brother and his father.
There are many theories as to why John Hughes-penned films remain the zenith of teen cinema -- and you'll hear most of them on the "Pretty in Pink: Everything's Duckie Edition," the ultimate high school love triangle between poor-but-fashionable Andie (Molly Ringwald), her devoted, delusional best friend Duckie (Jon Cryer), and the rich-but-allegedly-soulful Blane (Andrew McCarthy).