LAUREL CANYON depicts what happens when Sam, a young psychological intern, brings his fiancée, Alex, also a medical school grad student, to Los Angeles to live in his mother’s cozy house in the hills. Much to Sam’s dismay, his mom, Jane, is still working on an album at the house with her young lover from England, Ian, and his rock band. Alex finds herself attracted to Jane and Ian’s bohemian lifestyle, while Sam becomes engrossed in his work at a psychiatric ward, including the beautiful foreign intern, Sara. Sam remains chaste but becomes enraged when he learns that Ian and Jane seduced Alex into a couple of three-way sexual affairs.
Although the mother eventually becomes chagrined at the awful way she’s behaved, and tries to put a stop to it, she does so too late. Of course, this is an extremely sleazy story, and the writer and director obviously enjoys her freedom in pushing the boundaries of good taste. Her humanist, pagan outlook offers viewers no spiritual solution to the temptations her characters face. In fact, it actually makes those temptations quite attractive at times. Also, while Alex and Jane pull back from their irresponsible sexual experimentation, Sam is left re-considering whether he should leave Alex for Sara after all.
Although LAUREL CANYON offers highly talented performers like Frances McDormand and Christian Bale as the mother and son, no amount of great acting can make up for the kind of sleazy material contained in this movie. Only people with warped hearts will enjoy watching such material.
Please address your comments to:
Michael Barker, Tom Bernard & Marcie Bloom
Sony Pictures Classics
550 Madison Avenue, 8th Floor
New York, NY 10022
Phone: (212) 833-8833
Web Page: www.spe.sony.com
SUMMARY: LAUREL CANYON depicts what happens when a man’s mother and her young lover seduce his fiancée. This drama contains extremely sleazy material that subtracts from any possible redemptive qualities that viewers might see in it.
(HH, PaPaPa, HoHo, LLL, V, SSS, NN, AA, DDD, MM) Strong humanist worldview, with no God or religion to help people overcome their temptations, plus seductions and dangers of hedonistic pagan lifestyle full of booze, marijuana and sexual immorality, including homosexual bisexuality, depicted; about 70 mostly strong obscenities, seven strong profanities and eight light profanities, some of which are blasphemous; scuffle and son punches his mother when he learns that she seduced his girlfriend; extreme sexual immorality includes fornication, oral sex, man considers cheating on his live-in girlfriend, older woman and her young lover seduce woman's potential daughter-in-law, and lesbian kissing; upper female nudity, rear nudity and upper male nudity; alcohol use and drunkenness; tobacco smoking and lots of marijuana use condoned; and, lying and graduate student lets herself get seduced by lazy, hedonistic rock lifestyle.