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Slums of Beverly Hills (1998)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  14 August 1998 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 9,171 users   Metascore: 69/100
Reviews: 78 user | 59 critic | 22 from

This semiautobiographical story follows a lower-middle-class teenager (Lyonne) and her neurotic family in 1976 Tinseltown.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Brendan Burns ...
Cop in Station
Harris Laskawy ...
Charlie the Cook
Mrs. Hoffman
Jock MacDonald ...
Man at Brymans


Vivian's family are penniless nomads, moving from one cheap flat to another in Beverly Hills so she and her brothers can attend the city's schools. Uncle Mickey sends them money to survive. When Mickey's daughter Rita runs away from an asylum, Vivian's dad offers shelter to her if Mickey will pay for a plush flat. Vivian must babysit her adult cousin, making sure she gets to nursing school and avoids pills and booze. But Vivian has her own problems: she's curious about sex, likes an older neighbor kid, has inherited her mother's ample breasts, and wants a family that doesn't embarrass her. Can she help Rita, keep Uncle Mickey happy, and feel OK about her body and her family? Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Take it from Vivian. The biggest problem in the country isn't money or drugs. It's breasts. See more »


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual situations, nudity, language and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

14 August 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les taudis de Beverly Hills  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$5,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$125,561 (USA) (14 August 1998)


$5,480,318 (USA) (4 December 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Mena Suvari and Natasha Lyonne were both in American Pie. See more »


At the airport, a Boeing 737 flies overhead. Although the logo isn't visible, the colors are unmistakably those of Southwest Airlines. Southwest Airlines did not serve Los Angeles until the 1980s. See more »


[Eliot and Viv are giving Rita a lift to her boyfriend's place]
Eliot: All right, we're close. I know this neighborhood. I do a lot of business up here.
Rita Abromowitz: Really? What do you do?
Vivian: He deals drugs.
Eliot: Vivian! Will you mind not going around misrepresenting me like that? Jesus. I just don't want anyone to the get the wrong idea that I'm like some kind of school yard pusher.
Rita Abromowitz: Oh, I don't mind. In fact, do you have anything for my nerves? You know, just laying around?
Rita Abromowitz: Seconal, Demerol, Tuinal, Valium, ...
See more »


Referenced in RuPaul's Drag Race: RuPaullywood or Bust (2013) See more »


Give Up the Funk (Tear the Roof Off the Sucker)
Performed by Parliament
Courtesy of Mercury Records
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Music
Written by George Clinton (as George Clinton Jr.), Bootsy Collins (as William 'Bootsy' Collins),
Jerome Brailey
Published by Bridgeport Music Inc. (BMI)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Nifty Little Movie That Never Got Much Attention
20 February 2005 | by (Milwaukee, Wisconsin) – See all my reviews

THE SLUMS OF BEVERLY HILLS (3 outta 5 stars) I figured this was going to be just another silly movie about the trials and tribulations of spoiled rich kids in Cali. Actually it's a pretty good coming-of-age story circa 1976. Vivian (Natasha Lyonne) has just grown breasts and now considers herself deformed. Her dad (Alan Arkin) is a divorced man of almost-retirement-age who has never been able to provide a stable home for his kids and keep dragging them from place to place like nomads (and presumably keeping one step ahead of bill collectors). One brother is a struggling actor and the other is too young to really fit in anywhere. In a desperate attempt to make ends meet Arkin takes in his troubled 29 year old niece (Marisa Tomei), charging his rich brother a fee for keeping an eye on her. So they all move into a small, cheap Beverly Hills apartment block and try to cope. Very funny moments... punctuated by some heavy drama and some unexpected twists. One of the better roles that Alan Arkin had had in recent years... proving that he hasn't lost his touch as he's gotten older (unlike many other comic actors of his generation). I have never been much of a fan of Marisa Tomei but I liked her a lot in this movie. The scenes of her and Lyonne conversing in their "secret language" are priceless!

14 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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