release year: 2003
genre: drama
viewing setting: home DVD, 4/27/04

synopsis: This is a dramatization of the brutal 1981 murders involving adult film star John Holmes.

impressions: Riveting, and entertaining, but it left me with the same impression as The Doors, Boogie Nights, and Natural Born Killers: I just spent a couple of hours watching complete losers with little or no self-control and no sense of right or wrong. In a way, movies like this depress me, because they're painful to watch, because I believe all the characters should be somehow removed from society since they contribute nothing. But anyway...like I said, it was riveting; I didn't want to watch it at first, but I got drawn in. And the acting was great.

acting: Val Kilmer turns in yet another outstanding performance as Holmes, a guy who manages to BS his way through every possible situation, even when it doesn't seem possible. Kate Bosworth plays his gullible girlfriend. Lisa Kudrow is the ex-wife who wants nothing to do with him, yet remains involved. Josh Lucas is good as a reckless semi-leader of the little gang, and Dylan McDermott makes a good, tough biker-type. Eric Bogosian does a great job as a powerful drug lord.

final word: Brutal and disturbing, but good drama if you can handle the subject material (wasted lives, drugs and murder.)

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