Club owner Cosmo Vitelli (Ben Gazzara) fashions himself the impresario of the seedy strip joint Crazy Horse West, on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. This is the L.A. of "Boogie Nights," except without all the cocaine, partying, and fun. Sure, Cosmo swills champagne and rides around town with his "girls" in a chauffeured Cadillac, but his alcoholic streak comes off more as anxious self-medication than perpetual joie de vivre. While Cosmo postures as a showman, dishing out hundred-dollar champagne ("Dom-Per-ig-non," he points out) to people who prefer vodka on the rocks and saying things like "I'm a club owner. I deal in girls," his contrived persona flakes off as the film moves along.