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The Hot Spot

83 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Don Johnson ("Nash Bridges"), Virginia Madsen (The Haunting) and Jennifer Connelly (Dark City) heat up the screen in this torrid erotic thriller from the acclaimed director of Easy Rider. Exploding in a series of suspenseful twists and passionate encounters, this "ingenious" (Los Angeles Daily News) film will keep you guessing until its final, shocking climax! Harry Madox (Johnson) is a handsome drifter who is not above larceny to make ends meet. After staging a daring daylight robbery at a local bank, he receives an alibi from an unexpected ally: Dolly Harshaw (Madsen), a sexy and mysterious local woman who has her own plans for him. But when Harry falls for another beautiful woman (Connelly), he incurs Dolly's wrath and finds himself caught in a maze of jealousy, betrayal and murder from which escape is impossible and danger is the ultimate aphrodisiac.

The Hot Spot is best known to lecherous film buffs for Jennifer Connelly's topless scene, but this sultry southern noir deserves more than prurient interest. It's arguably Dennis Hopper's best directorial effort (OK, so that's not saying much), and Charles Williams's source novel Hell Hath No Fury finds Hopper in a comfortable B-movie milieu, riffing on Double Indemnity with an overripe tale of sex, greed, and blackmail in an unnamed Texan town. Fresh from the final season of Miami Vice, Don Johnson stars as a shifty drifter, conning his way into a salesman job on a used-car lot, where the boss's insatiable wife (Virginia Madsen) offers him sexual favors and a lovely secretary's (Connelly) innocence is threatened by a percolating scandal. Nobody's really innocent, of course, and Hopper spices this languid web of secrets with enough trashy misbehavior to qualify The Hot Spot as a bona fide guilty pleasure. --Jeff Shannon

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Don Johnson, Virginia Madsen, Jennifer Connelly, Charles Martin Smith, William Sadler
  • Directors: Dennis Hopper
  • Writers: Charles Williams, Nona Tyson
  • Producers: Bill Gavin, Deborah Capogrosso, Derek Power, Paul Lewis, Stephen Ujlaki
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: June 13, 2000
  • Run Time: 130 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0792845803
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #42,623 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Hot Spot" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Wing Lee on April 17, 2005
Format: DVD
Having recently seen Sideways, and captivated by Virginia Madsen's Oscar-nominated/career revival performance, it was my absolute curiosity to see what she was like more than ten years ago in this steamy sexual/bank robbery thriller. She was actually very good in this B-movie, and her role is similar to Sharon Stone's role in Basic Instinct. Gotta love her authentic Texas accent here!

It's a movie about love, sex, and money. Don Johnson plays an out of towner con artist working undercover as a car salesman in a dealership owned by Virginia Madsen's hubby. She's an over-sexed bombshell and naturally she would hit on Johnson, but his true love interest is Jennifer Connelly, a secretary at the dealership. Johnson had masterminded a scheme to rob the local bank, and during his stay in town, he became involved sexually and romantically with the two ladies. It's a smart idea on how he managed to steal the big bundles of cash from the bank and then he had to figure out which woman should leave town with him.

This is pretty sexy movie, and the viewers do get to see enough nudity of the three leads. Jennifer Connelly was very young, and her affair with the sexy Don Johnson seemed like a variation of Lolita. Virginia Madsen is very striking, and so different from her Sideways role, because she's so wild, raunchy, and insatiable.
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58 of 64 people found the following review helpful By cookieman108 on September 21, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I admit The Hot Spot (1990) popped up on my radar solely due to the fact Jennifer Connelly appears topless in one scene (How many people went to see the 2001 film Swordfish based solely on Halle Berry appearing topless?). I really didn't have much confidence in the film itself, as it stars Don Johnson, and while he may have been the flavor of the month in the 80's with his Miami Vice show, he really drove me away with his subsequent, and short lived, singing career (anyone remember the song Heartbeat? It was picked as one of the 50 worst songs ever by VH1). Also, the film was directed by 60's leftover Dennis Hopper, whom I like as an actor, but was unsure of his directing talents...let's look at his directing endeavors (the one's I've seen, at least)...there's the quintessential 60's counterculture film Easy Rider, the 1988 film Colors, which focused on the ever rising gangster/criminal mentality prevalent in LA at the time (still is, as far as I know) which was, and is, really good, and then there's the 1994 film Chasers...that last one is worth about two bad films it was so two great films, and one really bad film...alright, I'll swing with me what you got...

Along with Don `Sonny Crockett' Johnson, the film also stars Jennifer Connelly (I know, I already mentioned her, but she's so nice, I had to do it twice), and Virginia Madsen, an actress known for her ability to adapt to just about any role she takes.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Mr. S. Wilkins on January 12, 2002
Format: DVD
Well, my first review and my favourite film to boot. Having read the book by Charles Williams- a gift from a friend who is big into literature and the classics, therefore I felt it might be good - I thoroughly enjoyed conjouring up the images of dusty hot Texas whilst trying to keep cool with the steamy sultry shenanigans between the two diverse female leads and Harry Madox, the main character. Watching the movie for the first time a year or so later, it struck me how rarely when one reads a book does the film match up to the imagined filmscape. In this instance it exceeded my expectations like no other film had done or has done since. With the wonderful music, evoking the atmoshpere in spades and the masterful performance by Don Johnson - hitherto remebered by most for his role in Miami vice and its lack of real depth - the movie comes alive to me as a romantic representation of what I imagine a small Texan town and its bizarre characters may be like. Jennifer Connely is indeed one of the most beatiful women on screen, a shame that many seem to have just focused on her nudity as a reason to watch (or fast forward) the movie, I guess it must tell you a thing or two about them..
You will either love or hate this movie for many reasons. I make no apologies for liking this and if you want a slick, stylish movie with great music, a hot steamy atmosphere and the opportunity to watch Don Johnson perform in the movie of his career (if only for posterity) then you will do worse than spend a couple of hours watching this.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Leach HALL OF FAME on December 20, 2004
Format: DVD
Do you like noir? Then you'll absolutely adore Dennis Hopper's 1990 film "The Hot Spot." It's a rare film these days that can capture the essence of the noir style, a style that seemed to disappear for good nearly five decades ago. You would have to go back to a film like "Double Indemnity" to find something comparable to "The Hot Spot." Perhaps only a long time denizen of Hollywood like Hopper could successfully make a movie like this one--after all, his career extends back to the grand days of noir filmmaking. If I remember correctly, he actually made films with central figures of the genre. Still, it's tough to reconcile Hopper the actor with his the idea of him directing this picture. Remember him as the wacked out journalist in the epic "Apocalypse Now" and the wacked out biker in "Easy Rider," two films that are as far from noir as you can get? His manic, and often maniacal, performances onscreen just don't lend themselves to this film's style. Nor, for that matter, does the idea of television staple Don Johnson in the lead role. Yet it all comes together in a masterful movie that I'm ashamed to say I hadn't seen until recently.

One day, a drifter with a past he's not willing to talk about named Harry Madox (Don Johnson) ambles into a small Texas town looking for work. He finds a job immediately at a used car dealership run by George Harshaw (Jerry Hardin), a man plagued by a bad attitude and a bad heart. Madox, however, doesn't seem like the sort of fellow who will put up with a lot of lip. While he gets along with fellow salesman Lon Gulick (Charles Martin Smith), his battles with Harshaw are constant. He also forms a fast connection with another employee, Gloria Harper (Jennifer Connolly), a gorgeous young girl who seems a bit on the shy side.
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