Shortbus (2006)

Cast: Raphael Barker, Lindsay Beamish, Paul Dawson, Yolanda Ross, Jay Brannan, Shanti Carson, Sook-Yin Lee
Genre: Drama, Romance
Director: John Cameron Mitchell

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the pirateer said...

Synopsis: Writer/director John Cameron Mitchell follows up the cult classic HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH with another salacious slice of sex-laden cinema. Mitchell interweaves three separate tales of highly... Writer/director John Cameron Mitchell follows up the cult classic HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH with another salacious slice of sex-laden cinema. Mitchell interweaves three separate tales of highly sexed and sexually frustrated New Yorkers, all of whom find some kind of salvation at an underground club named Shortbus. Anything goes at Shortbus--wild orgies between people from different ages, backgrounds, and sexual preferences are treated as commonplace, and most of the sex scenes shot through Mitchell's voyeuristic lens are completely unsimulated. Mitchell allows little time for his audience to pause for breath, opening SHORTBUS with a frantic collage of copulation and carnality that features most of his central characters. These include Sofia (Sook-Yin Lee), a sex therapist who has never reached full orgasm; gay couple James (Paul Dawson)--who begins the movie by fellating himself--and Jamie (PJ DeBoy); and Severin (Lindsay Beamish), a dominatrix who finds herself unable to find true love. Mitchell lets his cast of characters unravel their tales of woe, interspersing the touching and mostly sad stories with eye-popping scenes from Shortbus and swooping birds-eye shots of a computer simulated version of New York City. The director also draws heavily on an indie-rock soundtrack, making repeated and effective use of the beautiful "Winters Love" by Brooklyn-based group Animal Collective. But it's the sex scenes that will really get tongues wagging, and its testament to Mitchell's fearless and uncompromising vision that he depicts sexual acts that run the full coital gamut, from amusing to titillating to shocking. Amid all the boundary-pushing there is a tender heart buried in SHORTBUS's central narrative--which revolves around the search for identity and acceptance--but less sensitive viewers who seek amusement in the singing of the National Anthem into a prominent orifice will also find plenty to enjoy here.