Darren Aronofsky's controversial and critically acclaimed 20 …
Controversial, brave, and extremely sexually explicit, Clement Virgo's LIE WITH ME examines the often raw relationship between David (Eric Balfour) and Leila (Lauren Lee Smith), two emotionally damaged young people living in Toronto. Each feels trapped … see full wiki
The Americanand apparently Canadiandating scene(s) is a mess. If my eighteen year old daughter is to be believed, traditional dating for this generation of young adults is passé, hooking up (getting together just to have sex) is the norm, these days, not the exception. Virginity is no longer a commodity to be cherished, but a badge of shame to be discarded the moment the opportunity presents itself. Fellatio is now performed in bathrooms, dorm rooms and in groups settings with points handed out to the girl who performed the most BJs in one sitting. While I can see how men benefit from this arrangement, I fail to see how women survive this ritual emotionally unscathed.
I am not implying the women are weak, but they are more emotionally vulnerable than men at this stage of the game as it relates to sex and sexual gamesmanship. Men after all are biologically built to relate to sex as unattached minions moving about the world planting their seed in as many willing females as possible. At this stage in our development we men see sex as a road to domination and pleasure, as well as a biological and physiological imperative.
Women on the other hand, invest much more emotional baggage in the act of sex, no matter the age. I dont see how acting like men and floating from partner to partner engaging in meaningless sex, does not emotionally and philologically harm women, if not on the surface of her soul, then far deeper where the scares can and are life long roadmaps all leading to emotional dysfunction. That is how nature made women, and therein lays the difference between the genders.
Lie With Me (2005) attempts to tackle this changing landscape with a story that is laced with graphic sex, prodigious nudity and foul language, and no shortage emotionally charged messages that pay homage to a tradition well worth respecting, not rejecting. Released in 2005 Lie With Me sets about showing the shallow nature of relationships that are based purely on sex in our instant gratification based society.
Directed by Jamaican born Clement Virgo (Soul Food Television series, The Wire) with screenplay by his wife Tamara Bergerwho also wrote the novel the movie is based onLie With Me begins with lead character Leila portrayed by Lauren Lee Smith (The L Word) lying topless on the couch in her apartment in Toronto, masturbating while watching a porn video. She soon finishes without climaxing and leaves her apartment to go crusin for a piece; in other words she is looking to hook-up and she tells us a much in a narrations as we watch her enter a club, and make her way to the bathroom, all the while being groped by anonymous hands. But I got the impression that she enjoyed the detached enjoyment; it turned her on; as she puts it, she is good at fu_king and not very good at relationships, because they take work.
Can you say instant gratification? That one sentence sums up the problem with this generation of young people; they do not want to work hard at anything. If it does not instantly gratify, it, no matter what it is, is not worth pursuing. But I digress
While in the bathroom Leila meets a stranger, David portrayed by Eric Balfour (In Her Shoes, The O.C., Conviction) and forms an instant connection. But there is a problem; he has a girlfriend, Victoria portrayed by Polly Shannon (Earth Final Conflict, Direct Action), but Leila wants to have sex with David so she sets about seducing him by having sex with a nameless man in the parking lot of the club while he watches and has sex with Victoria in the front set of his car. Leila is in this for herself, and while engaged in intercourse continually warns the poor slob not to climax.
Leila and David meet again by chance on the street, and she proceeds to run from him, but he gives chase and the two end up at a park where the sexual game continues as Leila exposes herself to David and masturbates for his pleasure. But he leaves before the deal is consummated, however the two soon hook-up again and this time end up at his apartment which he shares with his ailing father. This time they go all the way and the bond between them is cemented with Leila exclaiming that David is the first man she has ever really felt inside her. Why him, we are never let in on that secret. Needless to say, she falls hard for him and he for her, though neither is ready to admit it, yet. But in an interesting, if not implausible twist, David is the first to let his feelings show and begs Leila not leave him after one of their steamy sessions.
Up to that point the tryst between the two was believable, but a man, especially a man who found bedding women easy would not fall so quickly for a woman he just met. And he would never beg a woman not to leave him; please! Even without knowing this story was written by a woman it is obvious but the type of roles the character play.
Predictably Leila pledges she will stay, but in the end leaves; he gives chase, but she is begs off, not wanting to commit; she only wants sex. To hear Leila tell it she really enjoys sex and would never forgo good sex for love. Again, predictably, David gets back together with Victoria, and Leila now finds that she loves him and begs him to be with her in a gripping emotional scene that should endear Lauren Lee Smith to all. He, predictably kisses Leila off, at which point she goes into a tailspin, becomes depressed and has meaningless sex, until David, unable to live without her comes back pursues her anew.
Lie With Me is not for the faint of heart or for those easily offended by graphic depictions of sex and nudity, not to mention language only a sailor used to utter. Within the 93 minute span of the movie we are treated to almost everything: masturbation, undulating nude bodies, a woman holding a man's erect penis (2x), a man with his face buried between a woman's thighs (2x), repetitive scenes of simulated intercourse (anal and vaginal), and plenty of frontal male and female nudity.
Both Lauren Lee Smith and Eric Balfour need to be praised for their unabashed portrayal of their characters; most of the nudity and sex belonged to them. Lie With Me owes its authenticity to these actors shameless and real portrayals of twenty-somethings searching for a connection real enough hold on to. They hide nothing, hold nothing back in their depictions; it helps that their chemistry on screen was almost palpable. Some many argue that the sex became repetitive after a few scenes, but I would argue that it is through the repeated sex that the two principle characters formed their connection.
To be sure Lie With Me is not destined for the Oscars, or even release in American theaters, but the movies was meaningful, timely, well directed, and well acted. And the movie is titillating without going overboard. If you watch Lie With Me keep the kiddies far, far away; this movie is for adults only.
Principle Actors: Lauren Lee Smith, Eric Balfour, Polly Shannon
Director: Clement Virgo
Format: AC-3, Close-captioned, Color, Dolby, Widescreen, NTSC
Number of Discs: (1)
Rating: Unrated; contains nudity (including full frontal male and female); depictions of graphic sex & language.
Studio: Velocity / Thinkfilm
DVD Release Date: February 14, 2006
Run Time: 93 Minutes
DVD Features: Available Audio Tracks: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo); Commentary Track; Steamy Photo Gallery; Behind-the-Scenes Footage
Viewing Format: DVD
Video Occasion: Fit for Friday Evening
Suitability For Children: Not suitable for Children of any age
What did you think of this review?
Darren Aronofsky's controversial and critically acclaimed 20 …
Drama movie directed by Gus Van Sant
A 2001 drama film