Projections - Movie Reviews
With Jim Sabatini

The Hot Spot

The Hot Spot
Don Johnson, Virginia Madsen and Jennifer Connelly

Rated: R for sex and violence
Reviewed by: Frank and Chris  
Release date: October 26, 1990 Released by:

The Hot Spot is a dry desert town in Texas where director Dennis Hopper presents a film-noire about a drifter (Don Johnson) who becomes involved with a totally sinful hot blond (Virginia Madsen). Johnson is interested in picking up a quick buck at the local bank and in Gloria Harper (Jennifer Connelly, an innocent 19-year-old who has a secret.

It is easy to understand his attraction to Connelly. She is young, beautiful and alluring, but he is also forced into a steamy sexual relationship with Madsen, who spends most of her awake hours in bed with various men in town.

The pace of the film is initially slow and the twist which causes Johnson to fall into Madsen's trap are obvious to everyone but him. Film-noire must have characters who are amoral, and end sadly. Johnson loses the young girl he loves but he doesn't end up so badly. Certainly not as disastrous as Fred MacMurray in Double Indemnity; nor does The Hot Spot compel and disgust as David Lynch's Blue Velvet. Don Johnson is believable and Jennifer Connelly has a wonderful presence, but overall The Hot Spot doesn't quite come together.

  Frank Chris Jim Nina Sam Howard Jennifer Kathleen  Avg. 
The Hot Spot  C-   C                     C 

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