Release Date: October 4th, 2006 by THINKfilm.
The Cast: Paul Dawson, PJ DeBoy, Sook-Yin Lee, Lindsay Beamish, Jay Brannan, Raphael Barker, Bitch, Justin Bond, Shanti Carson, Stephen Kent Jusick.
Directed by John Cameron Mitchell.
BASIC PREMISE: Four New Yorkers struggle with intimacy and sex-related problems post-9/11.
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: What separates Shortbus from a porno film is that it actually develops its characters into believable people with very personal problems. The opening scenes include excessive (male and female) nudity and graphic sexual acts which make you feel like youíre about to watch a shocking movie. This feels more like a raunchier version of Sex and the City. Sofia (Lee) goes out-of-her-mind because she canít achieve an orgasm despite being a sex therapist. Severin (Beamish) suffers from the opposite problem: too much sex, not enough intimacy. James (Dawson) and Jamie (DeBoy), a gay couple, experiment with opening their relationship to a third partner. Fortunately, writer/director John Cameron Mitchell doesnít include too many characters which would have made this a mess. He wisely keeps the plot focused on the four flawed New Yorkers as they gradually discover themselves, so-to-speak, in a sex-club called Shortbus. Much of the film is full of comic energy, lively characters and pizzazz. The same can also be said for Mitchellís last film, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, although this one has a musical number thatís not as much fun to sing along to. Both films have shock value, yet are a guilty pleasure from start to finish. Clearly, Mitchell knows how to please his target audience. Rarely does lightening strike for a filmmaker twice in a row.
SPIRITUAL VALUE: None, other than the inevitable importance of finding solutions for personal problems which everyone must confront at some point.
INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: None.
NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 0
IN A NUTSHELL: Wild, hilarious and shocking. A raunchy Sex and the City.
RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater (1st Run)
The "S" Menu