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The Hottest State
DVD disk
01.07.2008 By: Sturdy
The Hottest State order
Director:
Ethan Hawke

Actors:
Mark Webber
Catalina Sandino Moreno
Ethan Hawke

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A man falls in love with a beautiful woman, only for her to break his heart. Through his struggle to move on, he seeks advice from his mother and his estranged father.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Sometimes, no matter how well a film is made, it just doesnít matter because the story is so boring or uninteresting that no one cares. Weíve seen good performances and directing efforts go unrecognized over the years because of a boring story and such is the case with HOTTEST STATE. At the end of the film, the audience is left asking; who cares?

Maybe itís just me, but I think most men have fallen in love with a woman only to have her leave for no explained reason. No matter how attractive you are or how smart you are, everyone goes through this. Itís not newsworthy and itís definitely not worth making a movie about. This story is so simplistic and boring that itís actually frustrating to watch. Itís bad enough to go through it yourself, but to watch it unravel on screen is just aggravating.

The entire cast did a fine job, although I found Mark Webber to be annoying on many levels. He has a weird look to him and his lack of stage presence was distracting since he was in virtually every frame of the movie. I did like Catalina Moreno as she turned in another wonderful performance. Despite their efforts, I couldnít help but want to jump through the screen and slap both of them. They whined and complained a lot about very trivial things.

I was also disappointed with Ethan Hawkeís direction as he himself has starred in some decent love stories. It seems like he missed some key elements that make a love story great, most notably a likeable lead and character motivations. We never get a decent reason or catalyst for the lost love and instead we just have to accept it. That makes for one frustrating film.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary with Ethan Hawke, Christopher Norr, Alexis Alexanian, Adriana Pacheco and Jesse Harris: Iím not sure why the other guys showed up because Ethan dominates this commentary track. Iím not sure I like Ethan Hawke as a person, and this track didnít do anything to change my mind. I think in his effort to be poetic and artsy, he comes off as trying too hard. This track basically confirms that.

ďStraight to OneĒ (21:29): This is a short film from Ethan Hawke shot in black and white. Its average, but I think he failed to capture the intimacy of this couple much like he failed with the feature film. The close-ups in the beginning were a little suffocating and unnecessary. I question whether or not Ethan has had a real, loving relationship because these two films donít seem to portray that on screen.

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FINAL DIAGNOSIS
This film was completely pointless. The only event is the break-up between the two leads and thatís never fully explained or explored. The story was too one sided and we didnít get the character development we needed for this kind of story. I canít recommend this one to anyone.
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