Love & Sex

***

Cheese sandwich anyone?

Swift shot: This one almost ended up in “The Bin” section, but I wanted to give it a little more prime-time exposure.  Still this would be more than adequate “Booty” for several reasons.  I had actually already seen this flick, back in 2000, and I admit I only watched it back then because it had Famke Janssen and “Sex” in the title.  It’s a great find though, as far as romcoms go, this is a keeper for most who prefer the genre.   The dialog was fun and the script needs little mending, plus Adam Rifkin recommended it, so who am I to argue with him?

Love & Sex appears as this typical Hollywood romantic comedy with slight moments of serious squirted onto the canvas, because life isn’t all kittens and sunshine.  But, in actuality, it is the pseudo auto-biography of writer/director, Valerie Breiman, whose “Kate” character is perfectly portrayed by leggy Nederlander, Janssen.  Her character, on paper, is just as much fun on screen.  Kate, err, Valerie, oh, we’ll just stick with Kate for now, starts off letting the audience know about her first love, a kid in her class who only kissed her behind the tree, because he was one of the cool kids, and to be blunt, she . . . wasn’t.  Anyone who was awkwardly in love should resonate immediately with her strange liaisons, which were quickly ruined (spoiler alert) because her dumb friend blabbed about it to the whole school!

Fast forward a decade or so, and we see the “grown-up” Kate working for a glamour magazine and she has to write fluffy, happy, bunny type stories about love and other bullshit.  Simply put, she loathes it; she is mortified with the sobering fact that, at some point, inevitably, she is going to die.  So, light, airy stuff isn’t exactly her forte, still, she isn’t all German Expressionism 24/7.  See, Kate decides to go out on a limb, after her boss challenges her to put more of herself into the writing, and writes a stylized guide to oral sex, entitled “Blow by Blow”.  From there, you get the feeling this film is going to be slightly raunchy, and guess what, ding ding ding, you are right.  There are scenes with overly sized sexual aides, public displays of affection galore and, yes, a few “sex scenes” – but there is nothing outrageous, unless you count Adam’s art, which perfectly juxtaposes his dialog.

Adam, played by the, at the time, up and coming Jon Favreau, is an artist from Chicago, you only know that because of his awesome leather jacket with the Chicago flag, which he even has his alter-ego wear in one scene which should grant small chuckles.  What I found so interesting about the Adam character is his ability to keep things earnest throughout.  He is entirely deliberate in his dialog, almost like he too knows life is short, and when you see some of his, dare I say, thought-provoking art, you might not believe a sensitive guy is to be found anywhere in there.  He is not necessarily a likeable character at first, because he is so frank and when he sees something he wants, the phrase “all is fair in love and war” comes immediately to mind. Still, I liked him well enough, and the friendship that grows between Adam and Kate is interesting and as I said before, the dialog is good stuff.  I found myself a few times thinking, damn, that was a great line.

If I have to take anything away from the film it is some of the supporting cast looked like they were seriously phoning in some scenes, I won’t name names though, because I am such a nice guy.  But, when you see these kinds of scenes it really detracts from the overall piece and the film becomes just a story and not something you are emotionally involved with. A few scenes felt tacked on in the middle, but, I guess sometimes life has moments, hell days, like that, and you find yourself searching for an internal fast forward button.

For the genre, you can’t avoid this one.  The characters are fun to watch on screen, the script is not dull, save for a few parts, and the acting by the leads is genuine.


One Response to “Love & Sex”

  1. Overnight - South Florida Movie Reviews by I Rate Films Says:

    […] shot:  Another quirky little flight-of-fancy from Writer/Director Valerie Breiman, stacked with some life-lessons and philosophical questions on faith, love and all that lies in […]