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"Mulholland Falls"

Mulholland Falls (1996) is a period murder mystery police thriller which reminded me in tone, somewhat, of Chinatown. Nick Nolte is a hard-boiled cop who is part of a special 4 man team who report directly to the captain, and use unorthodox methods to get rid of mobsters and crooks. The title comes from their habit of throwing people they want to dispose of off a cliff on Mulholland Drive, which they nicknamed Mulholland falls. They are sent to investigate a murder, and the victim turns out to be a woman of easy virtue who Nolte had been sleeping with. He soon discovers that another of her steadies was the head of the Atomic Energy Commission. When Nolte starts to investigate the general at a testing facility, the base security and the FBI are all over him.

I will stop in mid-plot. If this is your kind of film, this is a good one. Melanie Griffith, as Nolte's wife, keeps her clothes on, but Jennifer Connelly is seen with bare breasts in 8 mm black and white films shot by her neighbor through a one-way mirror. The bad news is that the quality was purposely degraded to look like an amateur home movie. The only other shots of her were flashbacks, which were shot with soft focus and a sepia tint.

I enjoyed this film for the atmosphere, the performances, especially by Nolte, and the story drew me in. IMDB readers say 5.6 of 10, with all groups voting about the same. Ebert gives 3 1/2 stars, but 70% of the critics were not impressed. Melanie Griffith received a Razzie for her effort. This is a slightly better than average mystery. C+

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  • Jennifer Connelly (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

    "Double Deception"

    Double Deception (2001) is a straight to vid about double-crossings surrounding the kidnapping of the daughter of a wealthy Japanese American businessman. It has plenty of twists and turns, tarnished heroes and action, but suffers from two major problems. First, they used the John Woo style gun to the head technique every 30 seconds, and second was casting a girl with little or no English skills to play the lead. The only exposure was a stripper identified as Shannon Duffy in a long and reasonably well-lit scene. The DVD is so over-saturated, I doubt that it is watchable on a normal Television. D.

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  • Shannon Duffy (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)


    Gothic (1986) is a Ken Russell film that I could have done entirely without. THe DVD is wretched, and, to me, the story is incomprehensible. It is supposedly about the night when Mary Shelly gave birth to the idea for Frankenstein while at the home of Lord Byron. Basically, the do some drugs, have a seance, tell some ghost stories, share their nightmares, hallucinate a little, then it is morning. Myriam Cyr shows her breasts twice. IMDB readers say 5.0 of 10. To me, it was a poor genre effort made worse by the miserable DVD transfer. D+.

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  • Myriam Cyr (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8)

    "Under Milk Wood"

    Under Milk Wood (1973) is a dramatization of a voice play written by Dylan Thomas about a day in the life of a small Welsh town. Although it is really about the words, they did a marvelous job with the scenery, and had a stellar cast, including Richard Burton as a blind sea captain, Elizabeth Taylor as the long dead love of his life, and Glynnis Johns to name a few. Two women expose their breasts, Ruth Madoc while wading in the water, and Susan Penhaligan tending her goats, and being wanton by painting rings around her nipples.

    This is only available on Region 2 DVD thus far. I am sure it is not for everyone, but it does present a colorful picture of a culture very different from what most of us are used to, is full of quirky characters, and, best of all, has the words of Dylan Thomas. C+, only because this film probably has a limited audience of poetry lovers, Welsh folk music fans, people who enjoy other cultures, and those who like well-photographed scenery.

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  • Ruth Madoc (1, 2, 3, 4)
  • Susan Penhaligan (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12)

  • Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy)


    Pendulum , although a grade-b straight-to-vid, incorporates a fairly complex script about right and wrong in a murder investigation. Suppose you're a detective investigating a crime, and you find out that Mother Theresa murdered Hitler. She even confessed and said she was glad. World is better with Hitler gone. World is better with Theresa out of prison. Do you send the little gal up the river for doing humanity a favor? Of course I oversimplified and exaggerated, but that's the essence of it. Strange thing about the movie is that the Dallas Homicide Detective is played by .... OK you guess - Joe Don Baker? Fred Thompson? Dennis Quaid?  NAH! Way off. How about Rachel Hunter, the stately Kiwi supermodel. She was obviously part of one of those minority quota hires. If you have a tough, dangerous job for too little pay, do you think it's easy to meet your hiring quota of New Zealand supermodels?  Hunter didn't get naked, but some local Dallas film actress named Alaina Kalanj did, although she was miles from the camera and it only lasted a few frames

    The Opponent is the same-old same-old boxing movie that we've all seen a zillion times, except that this time it's a female boxer. This is basically the old film with John Garfield as the boxer and Pat O'Brien as his kindly trainer, or Stallone and Burgess Meredith, or anyone else, except that the boxer is played by ... are you ready for this? .... Erika Eleniak! Before this movie I thought Eleniak was a lightweight bimbo, but she did absolutely fine in the role. She handled her lines well, and matched the rest of the cast despite working with trained stage actors (the budget was zero, so they used stage actors hoping to break into movies). I'm no expert, but she seemed to do pretty well in the ring as well. She also got into incredible shape, and looked like an athlete, not like a centerfold. Her arms were veined, her hips were narrow, and she did well with the bag, skipping rope, etc. Despite the completely predictable script, this movie is watchable. There's even a widescreen version (it was screened at a couple of film festivals). Of course, nobody will ever watch it. It just isn't original. On the other hand, the fledgling director and Eleniak showed what they can do with no budget or special effects, so we'll probably hear more from them. Do you believe it? One of those ex-Playmates may actually turn into a real actress. Good for her. I believe that hard work should count for something, and she obviously has put her soul into it.

    • Eleniak (1, 2, 3, 4)



    New encyclopedia volumes: Eva Herzigova. Czech it out!


    Scoopy's Charades Tips:

    If you read my review of the film "O", you saw that my main point was not to use that film to stump your opponents in charades, or as my pretentious friends call it, "share-ODDS".  I recommended Mercy Humppe or Timegate instead (see review for full, long titles). In this week's DVD's, I found another title that will be good for your "share-ODDS" competitions:

    Air Bud 4: 7th Inning Fetch

    I will not be screening that film, so if you know of any sex in it other than Bud doing it doggie style, you'll actually have to rent the film to see it.

    By the way, there's talk that Charades will be added to the Winter Olympiad in Turin in 2006, so consider this column your personal training table.



    The British Academy held their awards Sunday. Here are the major awards

    • Best Picture and Director - Lord of the Rings
    • best British picture - Gosford Park, directed by that noted Brit, Lord Altman
    • best actor - Crowe
    • best actress - Dench (same as every other year.)
    • supporting actor - Broadbent
    • supporting actress- Connelly (friggin' Dench was nominated here, too, but lost)
    • screenplay- Amelie (original), Shrek (adapted)
    • cinematography - The Man Who Wasn't There
    • editing - Mulholland Drive
    • music- Moulin Rouge
    • foreign language - Love's a Bitch (Say what? Oh, those Brits are always with the latest news, aren't they? Tuna and I both agreed it was a terrific film, but it's so old I think it stars Theda Bara and Rudolph Valentino. The cast in this film couldn't hear the director over the beating of pterodactyl wings. Seriously, it was filmed in 1999, and entered at Cannes in May 2000)
    • all other awards - given to Judy Dench, as always. She now has 4,326 BAFTA awards, and the metal in them represents a significant hazard to the navigation systems of planes flying over her house. OK, she really has 17 (awards + nominations).



    forget about all those phony-baloney odds from EW and stuff. Their dollars are not on the line. American bookmakers do not take bets on any events in which the results are known to someone in advance of the competition, like Wrestlemania, The Oscars, and Olympic figure skating.. The British bookies have no such compunctions. They put their money on the line with these odds, and you can place a live bet. (Note- Connelly is considered almost a sure thing, but Zellweger appears not to have a prayer, nor does Mr Hawke!). Here are three examples of the odds at about 11:00 Eastern Time on the 25th


    Best Picture

    odds (amount paid per dollar bet)

    odds (normal format)
    A Beautiful Mind 1.8 4-5
    Lord of the Rings 2.62 13-8
    In the Bedroom 8 7-1
    Moulin Rouge 11 10-1
    Gosford Park 13 12-1
    Best Actor    
    Crowe 1.67 2-3
    Smith 3.5 5-2
    Washington 5 4-1
    Penn 13 12-1
    Wilkinson 13 12-1
    Best Actress    
    Spacek 1.67 2-3
    Kidman 4 3-1
    Berry 5 4-1
    Dench 6 5-1
    Zellweger 21 20-1



    Best Picture
    8/11 A Beautiful Mind
    6/4 Lord Of The Rings
    8/1 In The Bedroom
    11/1 Gosford Park
    12/1 Moulin Rouge
    Best Actor
    8/13 Russell Crowe
    11/4 Will Smith
    7/2 Denzel Washington
    12/1 Sean Penn
    14/1 Tom Wilkinson
    Best Actress
    4/6 Sissy Spacek
    3/1 Nicole Kidman
    9/2 Halle Berry
    5/1 Judi Dench
    18/1 Renee Zellweger
    Best Supporting Actor
    5/4 Jim Broadbent
    6/4 Ian McKellen
    4/1 Ben Kingsley
    13/2 Jon Voight
    12/1 Ethan Hawke
    Best Supporting Actress
    1/2 Jennifer Connelly
    5/1 Maggie Smith
    5/1 Kate Winslet
    13/2 Helen Mirren
    15/2 Marisa Tomei
    Best Director
    5/4 Peter Jackson
    13/8 Ron Howard
    11/4 Robert Altman
    10/1 Ridley Scott
    14/1 David Lynch
    Best Foreign Film
    4/11 Amelie
    3/1 No Man's Land
    6/1 Lagaan
    12/1 Son Of The Bride
    12/1 Elling




        Sissy Spacek     4/7  
        Nicole Kidman     10/3  
        Halle Berry   5/1
        Judi Dench     6/1  
        Renee Zellweger     22/1  
        Jim Broadbent     11/8  
        Ian McKellen     7/4  
        Ben Kingsley     7/2  
        Jon Voight     6/1  
        Ethan Hawke     12/1  



    Here are the latest movie reviews available at scoopy.com.

    • The yellow asterisks indicate that I wrote the review, and am deluded into thinking it includes humor.
    • If there is a white asterisk, it means that I inexplicably determined there might be something of interest.
    • A blue asterisk indicates the review is written by Tuna (or Lawdog or Junior or C2000 or Realist or ICMS or somebody else besides me)
    • If there is no asterisk, I wrote it, but am too ashamed to admit it.

    Dani Behr The UK actress and TV personality showing off some very impressive cleavage in this scan by Chumba.

    Sheryl Crow
    (1, 2, 3, 4)

    Looking mighty sexy in very skimpy outfits from the pages of Stuff magazine. Link #1 is the cover. Thanks to the Rawhide Kid.

    Ina Paule Klink Topless and rear nudity as the title character in the German movie "Liane".

    Sonja Giesse Flashing a very lovely pair, also in scenes from "Liane".

    Kylie Minogue Showing off a bit of cheek as she grabs her bum at the Brit Awards.

    Nuza Kuchianidze
    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

    Vidcaps by DeVo from the Euro-movie "27 Missing Kisses" (2000). With the excepetion of the mop on her head, Nuza looks great topless. Link #3 may also reveal some partial bum and pubes if you stare long enough.

    Mariella Ahrens
    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

    Excellent scans by Blackshine of the German actress posing semi-nude. Link #5 has the most partial bum and breast exposure.

    The Olympics in Review
    Dave Barry's final dispatch from the Olympics, for the Miami Herald...

    Please, judge me
    Want Olympic spirit? Introduce more subjective sports
    By Dave Barry

    SALT LAKE CITY - The 2002 Winter Olympic games are finally over, except for curling, which hopes to wrap up by May. Thousands of visitors are leaving Utah, taking with them a lifetime supply of fond memories and soiled underwear. But the nonstop craziness of the last three weeks has forever changed the moral tone of this once-stodgy state, as evidenced by the Utah legislature's unanimous vote Saturday to legalize the sale of heroin in elementary schools.

    Yes, it has been quite a party, right through the upbeat Closing Ceremony, which featured Vice President Dick Cheney leading the crowd in the macarena, after which the rock band Kiss extinguished the Olympic flame via a technique we cannot describe in a family newspaper. The climax of the evening was a spectacular display of what the International Olympic Committee insisted was ''friendly fire'' between the Russian and Canadian biathlon teams.

    Which brings us to the judging controversies that plagued these Games. Many people feel the only solution is to eliminate the sports that require subjective judging. This is a great idea, except for one thing: It's stupid.

    Listen. For normal, non-Nordic humans, judging controversies are THE MOST EXCITING PART of the Winter Olympics. If you eliminate the judged sports, you're left with the sports in which 300 Norwegians and Finns (who are the same as Norwegians) take turns sliding across or down some frozen surface, all finishing within three-thousandths of a second of each other. Not only are these competitions dull to watch, but when the Norwegian/Finns TALK, they all seem to be reading statements generated by the Bore-O-Matic machine:

    • ``The ice was hard. I felt good.''
    • ``The ice was soft. I can do better.''
    • ``The snow was wet. I fell down.''
    • ``The snow was dry. I am causing my own self to nod off here.''
    Is that what you want from the Winter Olympics? A bunch of guys named ''Jens'' emitting quotes that could sedate cattle? Of course not. You want scandal! That's why the solution for the Winter Olympics is to have corrupt, biased judges for ALL the sports. Imagine how this would affect, say, the bobsled competition:

    FIRST ANNOUNCER: The Swiss team's time is 47.098948727 seconds! A world record! Now we'll wait for the judges' scores. . . . UH-oh!

    SECOND ANNOUNCER: Very low marks from the French judge, Bob. She's making it clear that she does NOT care for those pastel helmets.

    FIRST ANNOUNCER: So the Italian sled remains in the lead, despite the fact that it crashed in the third turn and is now in pieces the size of Legos.

    Wouldn't that be great? All controversy, all the time! Other than that, I think the Winter Olympics are perfect. I also think Utah did a fabulous job as host, although I would not want to raise children here, what with the declining moral tone. I am eager to get back to Miami, where we don't allow heroin until junior high.

    So now I'm going to sign off as your Salt Lake City correspondent and leave you with this final thought on the 2002 Winter Olympic games: The snow was cold. I stayed indoors.

    The Funnies by Number 6
    Pat Reeder The Comedy Wire
    >From NY Post Page Six. Maybe by the time the DVD comes out with this deleted scene on it, we will all have figured out who in the heck Summer Phoenix is...

    SUMMER Phoenix has a full-frontal nude scene in "Esther Khan." But an even more revealing version ended up on the cutting-room floor. "The first take, I walked out without covering myself, and stood there," the dark-haired actress told The Post's V.A. Musetto. Not satisfied, director Arnaud Desplechin ordered a second take, in which Phoenix tries to cover her curvy bod with her hands. That's what viewers will see when the film opens Friday.

    Stop the presses! Charlie scooped everyone back in his January 26 update with the Full Frontal Summer Phoenix scene! In case you missed it, here she is in all of her glory. Both covered and more importantly, UN-covered.


    NORWALK, Conn. (AP) - William Shatner will resume his role as a spokesman for Priceline.com, but won't be singing in the next generation of ads for the name-your-own-price Internet company. The former ``Star Trek'' star will team up with what Priceline.com calls its super computer, which finds airline tickets, hotel rooms and other travel products at discounts. Earlier this year, the 70-year-old actor renewed his contract to appear in Priceline.com radio and television advertisements. ``Given the futuristic side of William Shatner, the new campaign is a natural and lends itself to both radio and TV treatments,'' said Brett Keller, Priceline.com's chief marketing officer. Norwalk-based Priceline.com gained popularity in the late '90s from Shatner's quirky commercials. The original ads featured him singing offbeat renditions of popular songs, including ``Freebird'' and ``Age of Aquarius,'' while extolling the company's virtues. The company has said Shatner's commercials helped make it one of the most recognized brands in the travel industry.

    The next story boggles the mind: a memoir about living with Mickey Rourke. Hope it's not a scratch 'n' sniff book. The following story might interest your many readers in the Pacific Rim, especially if they enjoy watching Pacific rim jobs.

    Carre Otis Puts Pen To Paper
    Actor Mickey Rourke has to watch his back - his ex-wife Carré Otis is penning a tell-all memoir. She plans to chronicle the ugly side of the modelling business, her drug addiction, her resurgence as a plus-size mannequin and her dramatic marriage to Rourke. She says, "I've withheld information [in the past], because you can't always rely on somebody doing an interview accurately. A lot of the writing is very difficult - journeying through my childhood, reliving some of the rapes, the upset of a marriage that didn't work, the loneliness at points in my career. It's been a healing process, very liberating but very painful."

    TV Station Fined for Sex Snippet
    SINGAPORE (Reuters) - A Singapore television station has been slapped with a S$10 ($5,500) fine for showing a bit too much of a controversial sex video featuring a female Taiwanese politician in its nightly news. The secretly-taped video of TV-reporter-turned politician Chu Mei-feng making love to a married man was given away for free by a Taiwanese tabloid magazine in December. Pirated copies of the video have since been widely circulated in Taiwan, China and the United States, making Chu, one of the best known women in the Chinese speaking world. Government-owned MediaCorp TV raised eyebrows in the squeaky clean city state when it aired snippets of the raunchy footage as part of a news report on the sale of pirated Chu Mei-feng sex videos here. "The visuals were deemed as highly sexually suggestive and offensive to good taste and decency," the Singapore Broadcasting Authority (SBA) said in a statement on Friday. "While selected visuals were pixilated to blur the nudity, it was obvious that the couple were naked and engaging in foreplay." MediaCorp was slapped with the SBA fine for failing to comply with guidelines which disallow nudity on TV, it said. Singapore takes a hard line against pornography, drugs and illegal gambling but Singaporeans have little difficulty navigating past token roadblocks to find raunchy material online.

    >From Neal Travis' column in the NY Post. I have a suggested title for this book: "Skanks for the Memories"...

    It was slightly odd to see grotesque old rocker Gene Simmons and KISS bopping on-stage at the closing ceremony for the wholesome Olympics. I hear that Simmons partied until dawn yesterday morning with girls whose moms could have been among his groupies. "He was going for the gold," says one spy of Simmons' late night Salt Lake City antics. I hope none of them posed for his camera - Simmons, 52, is working on a new book featuring nothing but nude shots of the women he's bedded. He claims 4,700 to date, numbers which would qualify him as an NBA All-Star.

    From the Mailbag
    Hey Scoop!

    I was wondering if you or any Fun House readers knew much about Ana Beatriz Barros. I've seen a few pictures here and there, including these, but I'd like to find more. She appeared in a book called Luz del Fuego and there was even a making of video on the site globo.com. Unbelievable pictures! If anyone knows where I could pick up the video or book please let me know.

    -Supermodel Maniac