[Screen It]


(2000) (Stellan Skarsgård, Salma Hayek) (R)

Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Tense Scenes
Heavy Moderate Heavy Mild Moderate
Mild Minor Minor Minor Extreme
Smoking Tense Family
Topics To
Talk About
Heavy Moderate Mild Mild Heavy

Drama: Four stories concerning various characters involved in the making of a film simultaneously play on the screen.
It's Los Angles and the officials of a production studio, Red Mullet, Inc., are trying to cast and prepare their next film, "Bitch From Louisiana." Among the executives and decision makers is Alex Green (STELLAN SKARSGÅRD), whose wife, Emma (SAFFRON BURROWS), is seeing a therapist (GLENNE HEADLY) about their shaky marriage and Alex's substance problems.

As a masseuse, Quentin (JULIAN SANDS), tries to relieve the stress running rampant through the studio, Alex's cohorts, including Darren (STEVEN WEBER), Evan (XANDER BERKELEY) and another unnamed executive (HOLLY HUNTER) have just informed the film's director, Lester Moore (RICHARD EDSON), that he only has a few weeks to finish casting the movie, which is particularly worrisome since he still has to find his leading lady.

Among those who'd love a shot at the part are aspiring actresses Cherine (LESLIE MANN) and Rose (SALMA HAYEK). Rose just so happens to be having an affair with Alex that has aroused the suspicions of her wealthy lesbian lover, Lauren Hathaway (JEANNE TRIPPLEHORN), who's bugged Rose's purse so that she can eavesdrop on her activities. When Alex doesn't prove helpful to Rose's cinematic aspirations, she tries to get a foot in the door any way she can, while Randy (DANNY HUSTON), the studio's security guard and resident drug dealer, tries to keep the hopefuls at bay.

As the executives listen to a film pitch by European talent Ana Pauls (MIA MAESTRO), who's accompanied by her agent, Bunny Drysdale (KYLE MACLACHLAN), as well as her boyfriend, Joey Z (ALESSANDRO NIVOLA), who supplements her presentation with some keyboard accompaniment, the multiple stories involving the various characters simultaneously unfold on the screen in four separate quadrants as the lives and behavior of those involved soon become tangled in ways none of them could have imagined when the day began.

Those who are fans of someone in the large cast may want to, as might those intrigued by the unique filmmaking style & presentation this film uses.
For drug use, sexuality, language and a scene of violence.
  • STELLAN SKARSGARD plays a film executive who cheats on his wife, uses strong profanity and has a substance problem.
  • SALMA HAYEK plays an aspiring actress who cheats on her lesbian lover by sleeping with a film executive in hopes of getting into the film business by doing so. She also uses strong profanity.
  • JEANNE TRIPPLEHORN plays her lesbian lover who plants a bug in Rose's purse so that she can eavesdrop on her behavior. She also uses strong profanity, snorts cocaine, and eventually takes some drastic and lethal steps to resolve her problems.
  • SAFFRON BURROWS plays Alex's mostly estranged wife who snorts coke and wants out of their marriage and seemingly gets involved with Cherine.
  • LESLIE MANN plays that aspiring actress who smokes and also snorts some cocaine.
  • XANDER BERKELEY plays another film executive who uses strong profanity, while HOLLY HUNTER and STEVEN WEBER play some of his cohorts.
  • DANNY HUSTON plays the studio's security guard who gives others drugs and snorts some coke himself.
  • RICHARD EDSON plays the film's director who uses strong profanity and is reportedly a drug user.
  • MIA MAESTRO plays a European talent who pitches a new idea to the studio with the aid of her keyboardist boyfriend, played by ALESSANDRO NIVOLA, and agent played by KYLE MACLACHLAN.
  • JULIAN SANDS plays a masseuse who tries to relieve the pent-up tension among the film executives.


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.

    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).

    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this R-rated drama. Profanity is rated as extreme due to the use of more than 20 "f" words, while other profanities and colorful phrases are also used during the film. Several characters snort cocaine at various moments, while some drinking also occurs and a character is noted as being an alcoholic. Various characters smoke.

    We witness a partially silhouetted sexual encounter that includes related sounds and movement and occurs behind a movie screen that's showing sexually related footage itself (with sounds, related dialogue and movement). The two participants are cheating on their significant others, where the woman is involved in a lesbian relationship where her lover plants a listening device in her purse and later takes drastic action in response to the cheating.

    A character is shot with a handgun, resulting in a pool of blood on the floor, and what appears to be a slow, but not frantic or particularly painful death. Other violence includes a character repeatedly punching another person. Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone in your home, you may want to take a closer look at our more detailed content listings that offer more specific examples of what occurs in the film.

  • Randy gives Alex some drugs, stating that it's "some really good sh*t" from the jungles of Columbia.
  • Alex pours himself a drink at work.
  • Randy and Cherine snort cocaine in the bathroom.
  • Lester complains that the film executives think he's using drugs again, but others then tell him that he is using drugs.
  • Emma pours a drink for Alex (who states that it's very hard to stop drinking when you're not at home - thus we realize he has a drinking problem).
  • It looks like Alex may have snorted some cocaine, while Lauren definitely does.
  • Lauren snorts more cocaine and then rubs some on her gums.
  • Cherine snorts cocaine, as does Emma.
  • We (and Lauren via her hidden microphone) hear Rose urinating in a bathroom stall.
  • We see some blood on a character's shirt after they've been shot and then later see a large pool of blood on the floor next to them.
  • Rose and Alex are having an affair (he's married and she's involved in a lesbian relationship).
  • Lauren plants a microphone/transmitter in Rose's bag so that she can eavesdrop on what Rose is doing and who she's seeing.
  • A character threatens another character with a gun and then shoots them.
  • A character threatens another character with a gun and then shoots them (with bloody results).
  • Handgun: Used to threaten and then shoot someone.
  • Phrases: "What the f*ck is your problem?" "You're full of sh*t," "Bitch" (said many times and it's also part of the title of the film being made in this movie), "Slut," "Funny as hell" and "That's the most ridiculous crap I've ever heard."
  • Lauren lets air out of Rose's tire so that she'll have to catch a ride with her.
  • Lauren plants a microphone/transmitter in Rose's bag so that she can eavesdrop on what Rose is doing and who she's seeing.
  • The sudden sound of a gun being fired may make some viewers jump/flinch.
  • A minor bit of suspenseful "music" (a heartbeat type sound) briefly occurs in the film.
  • We hear the line "Make love, not war" during an audition for the film's soundtrack.
  • At least 22 "f" words (1 used sexually), 5 "s" words, 3 craps, 2 asses, 1 hell, 6 uses of "Oh my God," 4 of "Oh God," 3 of "Swear to God," 2 of "G-damn" and 1 use each of "God," "Jesus" and "Jesus Christ" as exclamations.
  • A masseuse talks about doing whatever it takes to make a client "come."
  • Rose (who wears a low-cut and tight-fitting top that accentuates her large bosom) and Lauren passionately make out in their limo.
  • The film executives talk about a character in the film being a promiscuous maid, that there's sex in the film, and that the character is sleeping her way to the top of a public relations firm.
  • Alex and Rose fool around behind the screen in a screening room where the film executives are watching dailies/test footage from their film and in particular a sex scene between a man and woman. Thus, as we hear (and partially see) a clip from the film where the woman is saying things like "That feels so good" and "Oh yes," we see Alex and Rose making out/involved in foreplay. From the film we see partial glimpses of the actresses faking a pleasured look on her face (and hear related sexual sounds and the director asking for an orgasm) and then see partial glimpses of that actress sitting on an actor's lap, faking having sex. Meanwhile, and in partial silhouette, we see what looks like Alex kissing Rose's clothed breasts and then down at her clothed crotch. We then see Alex on top of Rose, between her legs, as she works on his belt. We then see more glimpses of him on top of her, with her bare thigh up along his side and then of them having sex (in a head and shoulders shot with heavy breathing). When the screening stops, he has to put his hand over her mouth to mute her sexual sounds so that the others don't hear them, but they continue having sex and we see rhythmic movement.
  • After they're done, Alex caresses Rose's clothed breast and the two then have a "picnic" together where Alex puts some food onto a chair. Rose tells him not to since they just had sex there, but Alex then playfully dabs his food all over the chair as if soaking up any bodily fluids on it (and she says he's "dirty" for that). When Alex says he has to leave, Rose tells him, "You can't just come in her and f*ck me and get out of it."
  • We hear the line "Make love, not war" during an audition for the film's soundtrack and the two participants of that song then do some brief, but passionate French kissing.
  • Emma and Cherine kiss.
  • Lauren smokes more than 5 times, Cherine smokes several times, while Alex, Randy and some minor/miscellaneous characters also smoke.
  • Emma tells Alex that she's going to leave him.
  • The innovative way in which the story was filmed and is presented.
  • Rose trying to sleep her way into the moviemaking world (and cheating on Lauren while Alex also has an affair).
  • Evan and Alex briefly wrestle as the former tries to control the latter from drinking more.
  • Lauren pushes Rose backwards, grabs her by her hair and throws her into her limo where she then proceeds to repeatedly punch her (we can only see Lauren's back and the movement of her arm).
  • A character threatens another character with a gun and then shoots them (causing a great deal of blood loss and what's presumably their death).

  • Reviewed April 20, 2000 / Posted May 12, 2000

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