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I'm Losing You

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”Zoloft, been good to know you,” quips one player in I’m Losing You, Bruce Wagner’s living satire of a dying Hollywood, which — like the L.A. screenwriter’s first novel, Force Majeure — is stuffed with vivid snapshots of Tinseltown angst and Hollywood-speak. ICM VP Donny Ribkin seeks oblivion with two men in an Impala. Celebrity dermatologist Leslie Trott’s vanity plates read lesismor; his buddies are either ”gay Mafia molls” or ”H.I.V.I.P.’s” who hang out at the H-Ivy. Laura Dern’s assistant is a ”chore whore.” And when director Pargita Snow doesn’t want to see a movie, she has ”zero-wannasee.”

No sooner do you become invested in one of Wagner’s Hollywood subsets than he moves on to another. Still, sift through these glimpses of the L.A. underbelly and you’ll come uncomfortably close to the beast. In this dyspeptic universe, babies are blind or aborted, masseuses perform oral sex, and just about everyone winds up in the hospital or dead. But along the way, every trendy, Prada-toting, name-dropping moment is accurate. For unsqueamish students of Hollywood, it’s a must-read. A-