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Slums of Beverly Hills (1998)

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In 1976, a lower-middle-class teenager struggles to cope living with her neurotic family of nomads on the outskirts of Beverly Hills.



8 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Brendan Burns ...
Cop in Station
Harris Laskawy ...
Charlie the Cook
Mrs. Hoffman
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 <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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:

11 September 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?


Natasha Lyonne has to play a woman uncomfortable with the attention she gets from growing large natural breasts. Lyonne was given fake prosthetic breasts made out of silicone to play this part. At first, she was excited to play the part while wearing them. Then, director Tamara Jenkins told her to walk around for a day while wearing them. Lyonne came back and told Jenkins, "I get it now." See more »


In Vivian's two nude scenes, her breasts are obviously (different) body doubles. The breasts of the doubles differ greatly from each other, in terms of size and shape. Also, her face is never shown during these scenes. See more »


Vivian: You dropped out of high school?
Eliot: It was an option. I wanted to join the workforce.
Vivian: What do you do?
Eliot: I sell pot.
See more »


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


Papa Loves Mambo
Performed by Perry Como
Courtesy of The RCA Records Label of BMG Entertainment
Written by Al Hoffman, Dick Manning, Bickley Reichner (as Bix Reichner)
Published by Shapiro, Bernstein & Co. Inc. (ASCAP), Al Hoffman Songs/Music Sales Corp. (ASCAP)
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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