The Hot Spot
Want to See
Not Interested
Rate it ½ star
Rate it 1 star
Rate it 1½ stars
Rate it 2 stars
Rate it 2½ stars
Rate it 3 stars
Rate it 3½ stars
Rate it 4 stars
Rate it 4½ stars
Rate it 5 stars
This hard-boiled throwback to the film noir dramas of the 1940s and '50s is directed by filmmaker and actor Dennis Hopper, based on the novel Hell Hath No Fury by Charles Williams. Don Johnson stars as Harry Madox, a drifter who settles in a small Texas town and begins secretly setting small fires, setting up his planned heist of the local bank run by eccentric Julian Ward (Jack Nance). To pay the bills while he puts his robbery scheme in motion, Harry gets a job working at a used car lot owned by the ailing George Harshaw (Jerry Hardin), whose promiscuous vamp of a wife, Dolly (Virginia… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 71%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The Hot Spot seeps with atmosphere, unfolds at a deceptively relaxed pace, steadily accumulates noirish grit, then dizzily plunges into a Lynch-like plumbing of the dark passions and nasty secrets at the heart of Main Street, USA."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"I feel at home in movies like "The Hot Spot." They come out of that vast universe formed by the historic meeting of B movies and the idea of film noir - films about the soft underbelly of the human conscience."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"It's a nifty, nasty, sexy, and sometimes very funny little paperback of a movie that delivers its genre thrills with a light touch and an agreeable sense of its own lurid ridiculousness."
‑ Nathan Rabin, The Dissolve
"A pretty sexy and effective noir in broad daylight."
‑ Rob Thomas, Capital Times (Madison, WI)
"Nothing to write home about, but still a middling hoot"
‑ Clint Morris, Moviehole
"The film might have been a camp hoot if it weren't for the fact that Hopper still believes in all this stuff - he likes his women molten, duplicitous, and in kinky high heels."
‑ Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly
"[Madsen] keeps trying for Blanche DuBois and coming out with Gomer Pyle."
‑ Hal Hinson, Washington Post
"This neo-noir film directed by Dennis Hopper is like a trashy pulp novel that you might read and enjoy at the beach."
‑ Scott Nash, Three Movie Buffs
"The Hot Spot is an incredibly hit-and-miss affair, with the various positive elements in the film hurt by a seriously overlong running time."
‑ David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews
"comes dangerously close to clicking before fizzling out"
‑ James Sanford, Kalamazoo Gazette
"For all its genre touches, ''The Hot Spot'' is best remembered for its little eccentricities."
‑ Janet Maslin, New York Times
""Hot Spot" will never go down as timeless, neoclassic noir. But, with its Hopperlike moments, over-the-top performances and infectious music, it carries you along for a spell."
‑ Desson Thomson, Washington Post
"Lazily made neo-noir that sinks its teeth into the genre's cliches with limited success."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"While much of the fun is in watching the serpentine plot unwind, Hopper also provides incidental pleasure through his acute dissection of small-town life."
‑ , Film4
"Maybe worth seeing just for Jennifer Connelly's numerous assets, otherwise it's a dry and wandering affair."
‑ Scott Weinberg,
More reviews for The Hot Spot on Rotten Tomatoes