Saturday 1 April 2023

Movie Review: Sex, Lies, And Videotape (1989)

Genre: Psychological Dramedy
Director: Steven Soderbergh
Starring: James Spader, Andie MacDowell, Peter Gallagher, Laura San Giacomo
Running Time: 100 minutes

Synopsis: In Baton Rouge, the sexually repressed Ann (Andie MacDowell) is married to lawyer John (Peter Gallagher), who is having an affair with her sister Cynthia (Laura San Giacomo). John's old high school friend Graham (James Spader) moves back into town. Ann is intrigued by her husband's ex-pal, and discovers his psychological ailment plus his hobby of videotaping women discussing their sexual desires. Cynthia is soon vying with her sister for Graham's attention.

What Works Well: Steven Soderbergh's grounded directorial debut overcomes a modest budget to deliver a jolt to adult-oriented dramas. Puncturing the facade of normalcy, the quietly potent narrative delves below the surface of decorum to reveal rarely disclosed social drivers and tumultuous emotions. The four characters all have secrets and talents, and are ironically united in innovating devious pathways around painful truths. The video camera is a mirror, a non-judgmental observer, and a hiding place, offering refuge from the discomforts of human to human discourse. James Spader, Andie MacDowell, Peter Gallagher, and Laura San Giacomo all achieve career highlights.

What Does Not Work As Well: Graham's essential back-story is tangentially described but never shown.

Conclusion: When the video camera is on, sex and lies have nowhere to hide.

All Ace Black Movie Blog reviews are here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

We welcome reader comments about this post.