THE HOT SPOT
Starring: Don Johnson, Virginia Madsen,
Jennifer Connelly, Charles
Martin Smith, William Sadler,
& Jerry Hardin
Runtime: 120 minutes
Distributor: Orion Pictures
Director: Dennis Hopper
Producer: Paul Lewis
Writer: Nona Tyson & Charles
WilliamsBASED ON THE NOVEL:
Hell Hath No Fury
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It begins when drifter Harry Madox comes wandering into the quintessential sleepy, small Texas town and takes a job as a car salesman at Harshaw's Motors. "In this life, you've got to take what you want," he confides to a fellow salesman, as he eyes Gloria, the beautiful, but naive, 19-year-old office accountant.
However, it seems that his boss' lusty wife, Dolly, has the same idea, too. Yearning to be seduced by Harry, she coos suggestively, "I always get what I want." Caught in a romantic tug-of-war, Harry takes time out to commit arson and rob a bank. When he's later picked up on suspicion, Dolly fabricates a phony alibi to get him out of jail. Then, it's off for another round of adulterous sex in which Dolly tries to engage Harry in a scheme to kill her husband.
Harry refuses, preferring instead to romance Gloria. Gloria, however, has been stealing money from the dealership to keep a blackmailer from exposing her lesbian affair. Harry, coming to Gloria's defense, is driven into a frenzy and ends up killing the blackmailer. He arranges the murder as a suicide, then plants on his victim the stolen bank money in order to exonerate himself before the authorities.
Dolly, meanwhile, carries out herself the scheme to murder her husband, then summons Gloria and Harry. Confronting the two, she squelches their romance by presenting knowledge about Gloria's thefts. Laughing, the husband-killing, man-stealing villainess says, "I always get what I want." After all, as she says, "We're two of a kind, Harry."
Although the Bible says your sins will find you out, THE HOT SPOT seems to say that craftiness can hide them. When people develop such an attitude, the result is a descent into a cesspool of immorality. Indeed, much of the action occurs in a topless club, with full female nudity abounding. In addition to fornication, other sex acts are performed on screen, as sex seems to be the only thing on everyone's mind. However, 1 Corinthians 6:9 says: "Do not be deceived. Neither the sexually immoral not idolaters nor adulterers... will inherit the kingdom of God."
Thus, the characters in this movie speak for themselves. That they have contempt for each other is obvious, contempt that is shamelessly mixed with erotica and violence. An old man, whimpering and cowering, is accosted and assaulted by Harry. People lie through their teeth, graphic murders are committed, and extortion is the order of the day. THE HOT SPOT is very tedious, long and slow-paced, and if you haven't guessed, everyone you know should be told to avoid it.
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