Posts By Jonathan Durbin

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Reviews Rage: The Hottie & the Nottie

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Occasionally we are so stunned by a film’s ability to disgust critics that we can’t help but report their comments. Such is the case with the new Paris Hilton vehicle, The Hottie & the Nottie. The film is about an alluring Los Angeles woman (Hilton) whose best friend is ugly. In order to make Paris his, a slovenly nerd must find someone desperate enough to sleep with her friend. Not surprisingly, the film is a complete train wreck. We suspect it’s a money-laundering scheme. If we were savvier people, we could tell you that works.

“One would think that after increasingly embarrassing forays into reality television, the Internet and the penitentiary, Paris Hilton might have taken a moment to reflect on her choices. Or perhaps not: with The Hottie & the Nottie Ms. Hilton proves yet again that introspection — not to mention shame — is as alien to her as a life without paparazzi.” — The New York Times

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Fashion Week Frenzy: Alexander Wang’s Dirty, Pretty Things

wang.jpgAt times it seems that Fashion Week is a non-stop parade of sophistication, beautiful people clad in high-end apparel made by and for people who schedule items like “cocktail party” and “debutante ball” in their calendars. Then there’s the other kind of show — like the one from young designer Alexander Wang, which was scary, strong and beyond beautiful. Mary Alice Stephenson, America’s Most Smartest Model host and Harper’s Bazaar contributing fashion editor, gave us the lowdown on Wang, another winner of the Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation award, which honors emerging designers. He showed his collection in an art gallery space appointed with a smoke machine, strobe light and dirty runway. The clothes were stage-ready, and his models all had attitude to spare. Spotted in the crowd were Wang’s business partner, model Erin Wasson, photographer Terry Richardson, and Alexandra Richardson, daughter of Keith. More after the jump.

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Fashion Week Frenzy: Even Rihanna’s a Critic

rihanna.jpgEveryone’s getting into the style game at Fashion Week. No longer content with just sitting front-row and having their pictures taken, select celebrities have started weighing in on their experiences at the show. Witness Rihanna, our favorite umbrella-slinging pop-tart, whose song-of-the-summer and severe new haircut have endeared her to millions across the globe. Rihanna’s currently guest-blogging for Elle.com. So far, it seems, she really enjoyed the Proenza Schouler show:

“Last night, Joe Zee and Robbie Myers [Elle's creative director and editor-in-chief respectively] brought me to the Proenza Schouler show and it was love at first sight. Joe made a quick introduction between Brooke Shields and me (they are old friends — he knows everyone!) and then we took our seats for the show. It was gorgeous — the sequins, the jewel tones — and definitely perfect for wearing on the red carpet.”

She goes on to note that she’s going to play the Gucci party tonight, which means there are going to be some very entertained suits and similarly happy fashion-types in Midtown. She’s a bundle of sunshine, that Rihanna.

In other celeb news, actress Joy Bryant is reportedly writing about the shows for C magazine. Man, the writers’ strike better end soon, or fashion journalists are going to be hard up for work. Seriously.

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Fashion Week Frenzy: Elise Overland’s Warrior Princesses

overland.jpgWelcome back to our coverage of New York’s Fall Fashion Week where we’re recapping all the craziness in Manhattan surrounding the season’s style shows. Mary Alice Stephenson, America’s Most Smartest Model host and Harper’s Bazaar contributing fashion editor, gives us the lowdown on the hottest designers. In today’s installment, we meet Elise Overland, one of the winners of the Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation award, an honor given out to emerging designers. Overland’s known for her rocker-ish taste — she’s made clothes for stars like the Smashing Pumpkins — but her show this time was a tad more sophisticated than it was stage-ready. It had plenty of attitude, though, as did its designer, whose personal style we’ve always thought of as being very Red Sonja meets Clan of the Cave Bear. Overland is striking, and so are her clothes. She attracted some well-known types to celebrate with her, including model/musician Irina Lazareanu, artist Hope Atherton and first daughter Barbara Bush. More after the jump.

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Fashion Week Frenzy: Girls Go Wild For Erin Fetherston

erinfetherston.jpgIt’s New York Fashion Week, and that means that Manhattan’s hosting all kinds of celebrities, models and designers. To present you with the best of the best, we asked America’s Most Smartest Model host and Harper’s Bazaar contributing fashion editor Mary Alice Stephenson to give her take on all the stylish craziness. In today’s installment, we discuss designer Erin Fetherston, whose line is a favorite of such celebrities as Zooey Deschanel (Elf), Anne Hathaway (The Devil Wears Prada) and, for some reason, Damon Dash (former Jay-Z business associate). The designer’s show was studded with celebrities, high-profile editors and buyers, and the theme had something to do with black roses — beautiful and oddly upsetting at the same time. More after the jump:

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The Giants Win! Paula Abdul Lip-Synchs!

The New York Giants shocking upset last night wasn’t the only Super Bowl performance worth noting, although it was certainly the most memorable. In slightly less stunning news, American Idol judge and 45-year-old pop star Paula Abdul returned, singing a song called “Dance Like There’s No Tomorrow.” In a word: Awkweird. Although we are staunch believers in second chances, and know with certainty here at VH1 that second acts in American public life both exist and are de rigeur (Scott Baio is 46! Peter Brady is married! Bret Michaels is looking for love in all the wrong places!), Abdul’s lip-synching was awkward in the extreme. Fellow Idol judge Randy Jackson accompanied Abdul on bass. And more than one Internet critic has called for the return of MC Skat Kat. That would have been interesting.

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Super Bowl ’08: Cheaters Never Win!

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Britney Spears’ Contagious Craziness

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As if what’s happening in the Spears household wasn’t bad enough, now it seems that whatever’s wrong with the deposed pop princess might be catching. In terrifying news for people who fly in planes, an Air Canada flight from Toronto to London had to be diverted to Ireland on Tuesday because the co-pilot apparently suffered a nervous breakdown. According to reports, he was dragged screaming from the cockpit and placed into restraints. As one passenger told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation: “His voice was clear so he didn’t sound drunk or anything. He was swearing and asking for God and very distressed. He basically said he wanted to talk to God.” Couple that with the news of Jamie Lynn’s pregnancy and even news about Eva Mendes’ rehab visit, and we think we’ve identified a trend. Crazy: No longer reserved for full-moons only.

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Paris Hilton’s Line of Shoes Are Just As Trashy As Her

parishilton.jpgCelebrity heiress and frequent subject of photography Paris Hilton has introduced her new line of shoes. The trouble is, as some online have noted, that a) the shoes are blatant rip-offs of other brands, and b) they’re ugly as sin. As to the former, we want to point to the style-obsessed ladies of Fashionista, who explain that Paris’ sandal is almost a direct copy of the Christian Louboutin shoe commonly known as the Tibouroun 70 Espadrilles. Today, The New York Daily News reported that Paris has upset the fashionable elite, since her shoes very closely resemble the ones produced by Te Casan (most recently in the news for their new line with Natalie Portman). The trouble is that it seems Paris has the inverse of the Midas touch — whatever she encounters turns to trash — and people are sensitive about their footwear. Would you wear her shoes? Picture after the jump.

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Sundance Stories: Jack Black, Swagboy

An oddly blonde Jack Black informed VH1 News that the celebrity swag at Sundance wasn’t exactly free — it comes at a price. The price? Taking a picture with the stuff, which means being prepped to be the next face of a random cosmetics brand in their Asian marketing campaign. (Just kidding. Sort of.) We caught all of the action at Sundance, the annual Park City, Utah, meet-and-greet, where celebrities came to check out new films, promote their own, and, in general, raise the level of conversation. Whether or not that actually worked in practice is something else entirely. When asked, for instance, about his horrendous new glasses, Bono claimed that they’re 3-D. That goes along with U2‘s new film, U2 3D, but it doesn’t change the fact that the world’s most socially conscious star of the stage needs a new stylist. For more on the festival, click here.

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Daniel Day-Lewis Honors Heath Ledger

Last night’s Screen Actors’ Guild Awards were a sad, somber affair, colored by the shocking death of Heath Ledger and the ongoing writers’ strike. Daniel Day-Lewis, the brilliant Irishman who’s once again at the fore for his role in There Will Be Blood, picked up the show’s best actor award, and dedicated it to Ledger. (Check the clip above for one of the most moving and graceful acceptance speeches, perhaps ever.) Elsewhere, the odds-on Oscars favorites were given their due, including No Country for Old Men for best picture, Julie Christie for best actress, Javier Bardem for best supporting actor, and Ruby Dee for best supporting actress. As for television, Tina Fey won for best female in a comedy series. 30 Rock really is the best thing that isn’t currently on television, isn’t it?

For photos from the SAG Awards, click here.