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Body Shots

movie review out of 4 Movie Review: Body Shots

Starring: Tara Reid, Jerry O'Connell
Director: Michael Cristofer
Rated: R
RunTime: 99 Minutes
Release Date: October 1999
Genres: Drama, Comedy

*Also starring: Brad Rowe, Emily Procter, Ron Livingston, Amanda Peet, Sean Patrick Flanery

Reviewer Roundup
1.  Steve Rhodes review follows movie review
2.  Dustin Putman read the review movie review

Review by Steve Rhodes
1 star out of 4

BODY SHOTS, directed by Michael Cristofer and written by David McKenna, is perhaps the shallowest movie of the year. Starring a bevy of buff beauties, male and female, the film appears to pay them by the obscenity. Like a porn movie stripped of most of its images, the film features characters who talk incessantly and obsessively about orgasms and oral sex.

Some sex is acted out, but mainly the characters appear to enjoy talking about sex more than doing it. With so many ludicrous scenes, it's hard to pick an example. The one in the shower is representative. As guys with rippling muscles shower, one talks on his cell phone and bathes at the same time. Screaming to his girlfriend, so all his buds can hear, he uses foul language to describe his sexual intentions.

Before the first line in the movie is spoken, the director has one character urinate on a closed toilet seat and another vomit. Shortly thereafter a girl comes in claiming she's been raped. The operative word here is "claimed," but we'll get to that later. The movie proceeds to flashback and work its way up to the alleged rape.

Starring Sean Patrick Flanery, Jerry O'Connell, Amanda Peet, Tara Reid, Ron Livingston, Emily Procter, Brad Rowe and Sybil Temchen, the movie features interchangeable actors and actresses. They should be required to wear numbers so we can tell them apart. Only Livingston from OFFICE SPACE manages to give his character any uniqueness.

Every scene in the film rings false. One character, for example, who has a desk among a sea of desks, plays a loud porn video on his office PC. Women talk about taking a class where an instructor teaches them improved oral sex skills. Another woman claims that oral sex isn't sex and neither is sex in a foreign country with a stranger.

The dialog is so ridiculous that it might be laughably bad if the actors would slow down long enough to let us enjoy its stupidity. "So, are you an aspiring actress?" a guy says in a come-on line to a gal he meets at a noisy disco. "You're a director?" she inquires. "Right," he shoots back. "I'm available for sex," she quickly assures him. Later at the disco, another woman confesses, "Sometimes you don't want to be in control. Sometimes you want to lose control."

The movie reveals to men how women can tell a real gentleman from a fake. Real gentlemen order appetizers at restaurants.

It tries to be a message movie as well as a sexual titillation film. "Sex without love equals violence," one guy repeats like it's his mantra. Actually, the characters don't think any deeper than their sexual urges, which they share with us ad nauseam.

Eventually the hyperactive movie does get to the "rape." Slowing to a crawl, the story examines in laborious detail the two participants' view of what happened. Is it true, as the Oakland Raiders football star claims, that it was just consensual sex? Or is the blonde bombshell telling the truth that it was date rape? The movie argues that in such situations the truth is not knowable. The ending does at least bring out some emotions from the cast, but it is shamelessly manipulative and not credible.

BODY SHOTS runs 1:42. It is rated R for strong sexual content including graphic sex-related dialogue, language, violence and scenes of alcohol abuse. Think of it as NC-17 and don't let your teens go unless they are older and mature.

Copyright 1999 Steve Rhodes

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