Maps to the Stars

Director: David Cronenberg
Year Released: 2014
Rating: 1.5

Piss-poor "satire" of Hollywood that has estranged burn victim Agatha (Mia Wasikowska) going back to Los Angeles from Florida (she'd been in an institution) to try to "make amends" with her family (including 'healing guru' John Cusack, Olivia Williams and Evan Bird) and getting part-time work as a gopher for insane actress Havana (Julianne Moore), who keeps having visions of her dead mother (Sarah Gadon). If this sounds like it's an over-plotted and contrived wreck it is: Bruce Wagner's pedestrian, usually ridiculous script has dual burn victim sub-plots to go with its dual incest sub-plots, not to mention a medley of atrocious 'performances' by a usually talented cast, with Moore's out-of-touch neurotic and Cusack's 'holistic' therapist being two of the most egregious (walking out of this miraculously unscathed is Robert Pattinson, who is actually spot-on as a limo driver/budding screenwriter/actor). It's populated with positively grotesque individuals who are impossible to empathize with in the slightest, and to suggest Hollywood is a strange place full of eccentric people is about as profound as saying Death Valley is hot in July. A major disappointment from Cronenberg, who's too heavy-handed for this kind of material.