Maps to the Stars


Agatha returns to Los Angeles from the Florida clinic where she’s been incarcerated following an incident of arson. She takes a job as Personal Assistant to Julianne Moore’s Havana, a self-absorbed narcissistic Hollywood nutcase, whose apparently-abusive mother died in a suspicious fire. Agatha’s brother is himself a child star with issues, her estranged dad is a pat and smarmy Hollywood tv counsellor, her Mom is her brother’s manager as well as her dad’s sister, they’re all grasping and mean and awful and depressing….. Ah, family dysfunction. In the hands of David Cronenburg, it’s all particularly grim and yucky. A perfect patina of Hollywood glamour, slipping along on that mirrored surface and cutting yourself on the edges. It made me feel a bit too icky to actually enjoy it. Julianne Moore may be Oscar nominated though.


With a 10 year old daughter about to take up permanent residence in our household, I guess I’d better (finally) get hip with teen culture. And what better way to understand teenage girls than the Twilight phenomenon?

Well, the plot is simple enough: girl meets boy, boy is good vampire, bad vampires try to eat girl. There you go.

Sadly, it’s less a shlocky vampire movie than the slow, schmalzy awakening of adolescent love and the white-faced vampires all look permanently startled rather than particularly menacing. They’re even vegetarians. It’s a bit like Blade, as made by the Hallmark Channel.

Already the books have made Forks, Washington the somewhat unlikely beneficiary of mass tourism by hysterical teenagers and their bemused parents – an opportunity shrewdly exploited by the local Chamber of Commerce. Lord knows what the movie will do. Some of the locations are listed at the metacafe site and at the movie’s own wiki site.