Support Your Neighbors — at the Movies

Opening this weekend:

1. “Catch a Fire”: Bedford’s Tim Robbins plays an Afrikaner police officer who leads a manhunt to capture and wrongly convict an apolitical family man. Think of it as a bizarro “Shawshank Redemption” role reversal set in apartheid South Africa. [Metacritic score: 60]

2. “Running With Scissors”: Pelham native Joseph Cross plays Augusten Burroughs, a memoirist whose freakisly narcissistic mother gives him away to her shrink. We caught a screening at the Pelham Picture House last week and feel confident saying: If you haven’t read the book, you’ll probably enjoy the flick. [Metacritic score: 52]

3. “The Genius Club”: Upper Grandview’s Stephen Baldwin is part of a group of geniuses, including Tom Sizemore, who are given one night to solve the world’s problems. Yes, that’s right born-again nutjob Stevie B., last seen in a GMC Jimmy retrofitted with a pulpit, plays a genius — this we gotta see. [No Metacritic score. To see this one, better get thy to Texas]

The Office is a repeat–check out what’s happening tonight…

babel.jpgTickets are technically “sold out” to the advance screening of Babel-starring Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett- tonight at the Jacob Burns Film Center in Pleasantville (with the director, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, on hand for a Q&A afterwards), but don’t let that stop you. A standby line will start forming at 6:00 p.m., an hour before the show. The buzz on the film has been incredible.

And across the county, at Purchase College, Matisyahu, the Orthodox Jewish Reggae/rap/rock star is performing a benefit concert for Westhab. Tickets are $110 for the concert or $125 for the concert and a reception with the singer afterwards (students can get $50 tickets). Call the Box Office at 914-251-6200.

Gibson Repents

No, not that Gibson, not the Peekskill-born anti-semite. We’re talking about the other Gibson: Charlie, usurper of the World News Tonight throne.

Charles GibsonLooks like we posted a little too fast on Tuesday about Gibson never giving back the anchor seat to Rye’s Bob Woodruf. A Boston Globe article reports that, in fact, he always has planned to eventually give Bob back the job. “Bob and I have had long talks about this,” said Gibson. “Nothing would give me greater pleasure than to turn the desk over to Bob sometime.”

Sometime, of course, meaning when my eyebrows are furrier than Andy Rooney’s, I’m dribbling out my mouth like Walter Cronkite, and Elizabeth Vargas is a grandma and totally out of the picture.


Party with Bill

clinton.jpgThe former most powerful man in the world is celebrating the big 6-0 this weekend with a series of parties in the Big Apple and if you happen to have $100,000 burning a hole in your pockets then you could join in on the festivities (poached eggs and Mimosas with Bill and Hill-and even Chelsea!!!-at Pastis for a 10:00 a.m. Saturday brunch).

And apparently there are plenty of spaces still available since, as The New York Observer reports, friends say they are on “Clinton overload,� after a number of events the couple has thrown throughout the past few months.

Update: Nicholas Kristof is not going to jail…

Yesterday we pondered whether New York Times star columnist and Scarsdale resident Nicholas Kristof could end up in jail after a judge in Virginia ruled that the newspaper must disclose several of his sources for columns he wrote back in 2002 about the Anthrax cases.

We called The Times to clarify and a spokeswoman told us that the motion to compel was made against the company, not against Kristof, so he faces no personal liability. Furthermore, it’s highly unlikely that a contempt charge would mean jail in this case, since it is in civil court. It would more likely mean fines. The spokeswoman added the paper is appealing the decision.

Good news about Television

daveannabale.jpgABC has picked up “Brothers and Sisters� for a full season, the net announced last week. And we couldn’t be happier since one of its stars is Suffern-born Dave Annable. He plays Kevin Walker, the troubled son of a wealthy southern California family who joined the army and fought in Afghanistan, only to return home with a drug problem and a serious quarter-life crisis. The ensemble also includes Sally Field, Calista Flockhart, and Rachel Griffiths.

And the Iron Chef is …

Oh, how we like to kid! We can’t say who won last week’s face-off between Peter Kelly and Bobby Flay, but our esteemed colleague, Journal News food editor Liz Johnson, does a fantastic job documenting the exciting battle over at her blog, Small Bites.

Look for more wall-to-wall coverage of Kelly v. Flay next February (or March), when the episode finally airs. Until then, “embargo” is the magic word.



Elizabeth likes me, she really likes me!

rosieliz.jpgPutting to rest longstanding rumors that she hates fellow View co-host Rosie O’Donnell, Elizabeth Hasselbeck (or “the hot one,” as we refer to her) pledged under oath and on the air that she “absolutely adores” Rosie and is not leaving the show. Of course, she swore this by putting one hand on her View coffee mug. As any Survivor aficionado—or neighbor of Rosie’s in Nyack—obviously knows, that’s the tribal equivalent of saying “… NOT.”

No word yet on where she stands on the traitorous Meredith Vieira.
“E to Ro: I Heart You!” [Video of Elizabeth Hasselbeck swearing her allegiance to Rosie]

Could Nicholas Kristof be heading to jail?

A Virginia judge has ordered the columnist and his newspaper, The Times, to disclose the identities of three confidential sources for a column he wrote about the Anthrax attacks in 2001. The man who became “a person of interest� in the case, Dr. Steven Hatfill, is suing the paper for defamation. He claims a series of columns written by Kristof suggested he was responsible for the attacks that killed five people and seriously scared the crap out of your’s truly.

Mr. Kristof has declined to name the sources but “the judge ruled that the laws of Virginia applied and that under the state’s law, reporters have only a qualified privilege to decline to name their sources that may be outweighed by other factors,� The Times reports.

Kristof, who was named one of the seven most fascinating people in Scarsdale—along with his wife, Times’ journalist Sheryl WuDunn—by Scarsdale Magazine, and has won two Pulitzers for his incredible reporting from overseas, originally wrote about a scientist he referred to as Mr. Z who had become the main focus of the government’s investigation. Later, he acknowledged that Mr. Z was indeed Dr. Hatfill.

The Times is appealing the decision. But the question is: Could Kristof be thrown in prison ala his former colleague, Judith Miller if he refuses to comply? And if he becomes the second major Times’ journo to be forced to reveal his sources this year, what does that say about the state of press freedom in the country today?

Scoot Over, Charlie G.

Bob WoodruffNot to fast, Mr. Gibson, it turns out that Bob Woodruff has made a full recovery after all. The Rye resident and ABC World News Tonight co-anchor was seriously injured by a roadside bomb last January and spent most of the year in rehab hospitals. And some time during that period his fellow host, Elizabeth Vargas, had to go have a baby, thus paving the way for Charles Gibson to take the reins.

What’s that you, say, Charlie? Too late? Finders keepers, loosers weepers (or 20/20 co-hosts)? Oh well, we’ll still be reading Woodruf’s coming memoir of the harrowing ordeal, or tuning into his ABC primetime special on January 29 — whichever comes first.

Cheney Won’t Give Westchester a Shot

cheney1.jpgThe Journal News reports that Vice President Dick Cheney will be flying into the Westchester County Airport today on his way to a private fund-raiser for the Republican National Committee in Greenwich, Connecticut. Even though the hills of Westchester are alive with vibrant foliage, Cheney plans to hightail it straight back to the airport after the event and depart. Why not take advantage of the beautiful countryside while out of DC?

Well, it is hunting season…

No word yet on whether Cheney was seen exiting the plane in a bright orange Carhartt jacket and goggles.

Matisyahu returns to Westchester

matisyahu.jpgMatisyahu, the Chasidic Reggae singer born and raised in White Plains whose charismatic stage performance and hyper-syllabic lyrics have catapulted him to the status of megastar, will be giving a benefit concert on Thursday at Purchase College. Proceeds will go toward Westhab, a non-profit that helps homeless families find permanent homes throughout the county. It’s an organization Matisyahu, who was born Matthew Miller (Matisyahu is his Hebrew name), is very familiar with. His father, Robert Miller, is its president.

Miller Sr. told me that in the past 10 years Westhab has helped 300 families each year find homes. The concert has been in the works since last winter. This is the first month in a long time Matisyahu hasn’t been touring (he’s home with his wife, who is pregnant with the couple’s second child).

“The benefit will be interesting,� Robert Miller says. “He’s a little curious how it will go. He’s used to performing for a younger audience and they’re usually on their feet. I’m sure he’ll make up for it with his energy.�

For tickets, call: 914-251-6200. $110 for the concert only; $125 for the concert plus a dessert reception with Matisyahu; $50 for students.