A bad parenting sex and drug addiction romp, The Informers eavesdrops on the mostly trust fund patrician, perpetually high lowlifes ferociously into doing the wrong thing on a daily basis in 1980s LA, while enacting their orgies to the music of the latest hot band, the Informers. Well, actually one protagonist in this collection of decadent vignettes does the right thing. But only after stuck in pause for a week or so, as an accessory to child sex slave racketeering and kidnapping. So much for socially redemptive second thoughts in a movie.
Based on the 1994 book by the movie’s screenwriter Bret Easton Ellis of American Psycho infamy, The Informers is ironically directed by Aussie filmmaker Gregor Jordan, whose 2003 production Ned Kelly starred then emerging gifted actor Heath Ledger, likewise tragically snuffed out by an overload of drugs. The primarily in the buff naughty boobs ‘n buns ensemble cast is mostly recognized by their copycat retro-trendy ‘stupid hair’ and respective flashing butts, rather than faces or personalities, while their equally degenerate, sexually predatory parents switch sex partners as frequently as underwear, when not making a play for their offspring’s chums.
Jon Foster is Graham in The Informers, the bisexual stoned out of his mind son of a sleazy Hollywood producer William Sloan (Billy Bob Thornton), who is in the process of dumping his furious TV newscaster girlfriend (Winona Ryder), while Sloan’s pill popping estranged spouse (Kim Basinger) is simultaneously re-dumping her frequently recycled kid stud lover. This, so Mom and Dad can get together again to save money on legal bills. But the boy toy really doesn’t mind, as long as Mrs. Sloan pops for a couple of Billy Idol tickets.
Meanwhile, a flavor of the month rock star abuses his succession of orgy mates, while in a seedier side of town, Mickey Rourke switches it up from The Wrestler to The Hassler, sexually preying on stoner jail bait. And while media reports are increasingly surfacing about a scary new disease that’s like ‘a contagious form of cancer,’ the head nymphmaniac in town who’s sleeping with nearly everyone, succumbs to the unidentified bug we now know as AIDS, as her sole obsessed lover in the libidinous pack deserts her when she’s not sexy anymore.
As much as The Informers may come off sounding like an unmitigated downer, there’s a certain perverse fascination that swirls around this accident-prone pampered tribe with too much money, credited in good measure to the sharply etched performances. Though the astute observation put forth by one flustered character, that ‘you can’t make it in this town unless you’re willing to do really awful things,’ does make one wonder if these prominent stars are closet gluttons for punishment by signing on to this movie in the first place.
There’s also a bit of humorous insight into the kinky when not kooky Hollywood product turning up on screens around the country, if the tinsel town players are as zonked out on controlled substances as this movie contends they are. Including scripts floating around throughout this story touching on talking cars, giant killer tomatoes, and rock stars in outer space.
The Informers: The shadier side of sunny Southern California. And a weirdly conceived cry for help cinema spotlighting slacker mope-aholic bored youth without adult supervision in sight.
2 1/2 stars