“Hotshots” looks at a movie!

Smashed is just another in a long line of films about alcoholics going back at least to the 1945 The Lost Weekend with Ray Milland and the 1962 Days of Wine and Roses with Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick, and the only thing different is that this time the lead alcoholic character is a woman.


You’ve come a long way, Baby.

Also, it is an independent film that was shot in only 19 days; so don’t expect too much in the way of production values.

And the only message in films about the fall and more falling of an alcoholic is “Don’t do this,” which leaves only great acting, marvelous settings, or compelling story to see a movie like this, none of which are contained in this movie.

Kate is played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and she is married to Charlie, played by Aaron Paul.  Kate is a first-grade schoolteacher, and Charlie stays at home and writes music, although we find out later that Charlie has wealthy parents who support them.

In fact, when they wake up one morning after another night of binge drinking, Kate makes a reference to the fact that Charlie stays home and writes, and Charlie says, “Yeah, but my real job is to change the sheets.”

Kate even takes a drink from a flask in her car on the way to work, and then when she is in the classroom teaching her students, she throws up into a wastebasket because she is so hung over.

This prompts one of the students to ask Kate if she is pregnant, because the kid’s mother does that when she is pregnant.

So, Kate lies and says yes, which just leads to an embarrassing chain of events when Kate’s principal and other teachers find out.

Well, Kate keeps drinking, Charlie keeps drinking, and Charlie’s brother and their friends keep drinking, too.  Eventually Kate admits that she has a problem, and she agrees to attend a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous with another teacher in the school, played by Nick Offerman.

However, a few meetings don’t do the trick, and Kate keeps drinking and worse.

Matters become aggravated between Kate and Charlie, too, even though he makes a half-hearted attempt to stop drinking along with Kate’s attempts.

Smashed is about wasted people, and don’t waste your money on it.

I’m Dan Culberson and this is “Hotshots.”