Slums of Beverly Hills

Institute History


Years after the fallout of a broken home, the Abromowitz family has landed smack in the middle of the Beverly Hills underclass with no mother in sight. Seventy year old Murray Abromowitz and his children, Vivian, Ben and Rickey move by night from one apartment to the next barely escaping the wrath of angry landlords. With their belongings in the trunk, the Abromowitzes are practically nomads cruising through the streets of Beverly Hills in their white luxury LTD demo. A captive in her father's delusions that all the family needs is a "good address," Vivian sits in the back seat peering through the rear window at great lawns, ranch houses and palm trees as the LTD quietly coasts along to the next apartment building. The family is on the skids—forever circling the margins of affluence and staving off economic disaster.

Vivian Alonso Abromowitz, our teenage heroine, is at the height of her budding sexuality, while her father has hit the economic low of his life. He is an old timer, significantly older and certainly more old fashioned than the hip parents of Vivian's Beverly Hills peers. Shopping for Vivian's first bra, Murray is beside himself when he discovers his maturing daughter is "stacked" like her mother. Murray sees his daughter's cleavage as dangerous and frightening, something to be stopped, but nature is taking over, creating a lot of tension in the Abromowitz household.

Vivian is plagued by being the only woman in a house full of men. Her brother Ben is obsessed with his sister's breasts. In the ladies room of Sizzler Steak House, Ben explodes out of a stall with a pen knife in hand begging his sister to play out a scene from the movie, Billie Jack, where the bad guy cuts off the bra of his buxom female captive. Vivian fends off her brother and is forced to march through the heightened landscape of her new found sexuality alone.

Enter Rita Abromowitz, a troubled cousin from the other side of the tracks. An escapee from a posh detox center looking to create a new life for herself with her extended family in Beverly Hills, Rita is a Jewish suburban Blanche DuBois to Vivian's Stella. She is a nervous breakdown about to happen, but Murray, in all his ruthless practicality sees his niece as the meal ticket he's been looking for. To keep Rita off the streets, her rich father, Mickey, starts shelling out cash, moving Murray and his kids up the economic ladder and into the semi-luxury building across the street. Rita, the unlikeliest of candidates, offers temporary salvation for this troubled family. But more importantly, Rita becomes the sexual role model for Vivian. With Rita as her guide, Vivian embarks on a sexual education using the boy next door as her romantic guinea pig.

Rita's drinking problems and her romantic troubles rise to the surface, threatening the financial security that Murray has meticulously arranged. This dynamic creates an economic/sexual hothouse that climaxes when Vivian witnesses her depleted seventy year old father and Rita turning to each other out of loneliness and desperation for sexual fulfillment.

When Uncle Mickey comes to town to check up on his daughter, the family crowds into a booth at a coffee shop. Everyone is trying to make a good impression in order to keep the money coming in. An argument over who will pay the check erupts into total attack on Murray, and the family watches on as Mickey reprimands a battered Murray about his bad money management and his wasted life.

Unable to endure her father's humiliation, Vivian becomes moved to an action of operatic proportions. With the use of a coffee shop utensil, in a kamikaze combination of focused intention and recklessness, Vivian manages to slay Uncle Mickey and break the cycle of dependency, freeing her family at last.


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