Monday 28 January 2013


Despite its unimaginative title this is a decent enough film - sporadically engaging, even sometimes charming, but not one that'll lodge in my memory for a long time.

Set in 1988, and based on the true story of a 38 year old man, a quadraplegic after contracting polio in childhood, who has to spend several hours a day in an 'iron lung'. (I didn't know that they still had these things. I always associate them with the 1950s and prior times, and had assumed that, by now, they might have been succeeded by another, more effective, method of treatment.)

The paralysed Mark wishes finally to lose his virginity - and, more specifically, to have penetrative sex for the first time - and he hires, for this purpose, a sort of sex-therapist surrogate. (Another thing I've learnt - I didn't know such people existed). Without even a blink, she takes on the 'task' of giving him his first experience. For me, Helen Hunt, in this role, carries the film. (We also see a couple of full-frontals of her - for those who like that sort of thing).
Then there's also the always reliable William H.Macy as a sympathetic R.C. priest - sporting some alarming, shoulder-length hair.

The film's principal point of interest is Mark's yearning for emotional involvement while his hired surrogate tries to maintain a professional distance, (she has a husband and son), causing her predictable feelings of guilt and pain. 

A fair enough film, then, but it was no great shakes for me, even though some members of the audience laughed uproariously on cue at some of the lines. I rate it a .......................6/10


  1. I have always liked Helen hunt... She has a warmth and a humour that I find pleasing....having said this the older she gets the more checkered her career has been.
    Perhaps it's a product of being an older lady in Hollywood.........

    1. Yes, I like her too, J.G., though one feels that she hasn't yet had a chance to really 'shine' and be noticed. As you say, time is ticking on - particularly unfairly for her and for actresses of her generation.