Slums of Beverly Hills | Movie Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Slums of Beverly Hills 

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Slums of Beverly Hills

Though hypocritical in the way it sensationalizes sexuality, this serious and funny movie about a 15-year-old coming to terms with her body and her family in 1976 is, refreshingly, never coy or ironic. In a voice-over that probably isn't necessary, Vivian Abramowitz (Natasha Lyonne) elaborates on her experiences living in a string of cheap apartments just within the borders of towns with good schools, her father (Alan Arkin) carting her and her brothers from Sizzler to Sizzler in demo luxury cars. When Vivian's cousin (Marisa Tomei) escapes from rehab, the Abramowitzes take her in, accepting a stipend from her father that makes them feel pathetic and allows them to rent better rooms. With Kevin Corrigan as an endearing Charles Manson fan. Written and directed by Tamara Jenkins. Biograph, 600 N. Michigan, Wilmette. -- Lisa Alspector

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): film still.

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