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Boxing Helena
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Boxing Helena More at IMDbPro »

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Reviews from users who voted this title more than 4.6.
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Index 45 matching reviews (120 reviews in total) 

37 out of 61 people found the following review useful:

Too out there for most but a select few will love this film

Author: Will Carroll (ElvesBrew) from Pacific NW, USA
11 June 2002

This film takes a screenplay that pushes the boundaries of the status quo and lets it run wild. Surrealistic, erotic, and darkly disturbing this film goes places most people won't admit they've been. For those few that are comfortable with who they are it presents an entertaining journey thru the extreme reaches of human eroticism. Suspense driven it takes the rider thru dreams and reality never quite allowing you to tell which is which until the very end. If you only enjoy movies with well defined good and evil you might find this an uncomfortable journey but for the adventurous soul rest assured, it is a journey worth taking.

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18 out of 28 people found the following review useful:

Far better than it's given credit for.

Author: smokehill retrievers from Chancellorsville VA
3 September 2003

My recommendation is to ignore the negative comments and see it for yourself. Ignore the artsy-fartsy crowd whose dislike, one feels, has more to do with the bad press and criticism by the liberal crowd than it has to do with the film's actual merits.

I make no pretence to artsy film credentials, and I'm not a big fan of David Lynch, though v enjoy most of his work, bizarre as it is. However, I think his daughter did a respectable job, especially for the first time out. Some of the symbolism was a bit obvious, but I suspect that made the symbolism more accessible to the average viewer and not just the snooty film buffs. As far as the inconsistencies the critics love to point out -- big deal. The whole "Rosebud" schtick in Citizen Kane was ludicrous and silly, but let's at least allow the same literary license to others.

I thought Sands and Fenn did superb jobs, and I thought the direction and music was far better than average. I enjoyed the movie enough to see it three times so far, and my opinion hasn't changed. I also believe the "trick ending" was essential to the movie and not just some shabby trick. Without it, it's just a gross slasher film and not a think-piece. There's a lot of unpleasant truth about male-female relationships in this film, and Lynch brought it out very well.

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7 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

this film is a lot better than people give it credit for

Author: ( from Los Angeles, CA
25 June 2001

I think this is a GREAT movie.

There are viewers who accuse this film of being soft-core porn. This really gets me. Any time a man talks about sex, it's considered normal, but if a woman does it, it's suddenly pornography? Shame on them. And compared to the amount of potty-mouthed movies in theaters now, which define feminism as the freedom to wear belly shirts and sleep with a lot of men, Boxing Helena comes off pretty elegant in the end.

Moreover, the film really does talk about something that's rare in cinema: what the sexual experience means to a woman. Helena's speech about what women enjoy, though explicit, is also accurate. Male viewers should take notes. I know I did.

And then there are people who say Jennifer is just trying to imitate her father. That's just plain unfair, and it shows a lack of anything substantive to critique. Shame on them too.

Sure, we have to put up with Julian Sands, but he's perfect in the part. He plays someone who never knows how to behave. He looks, much like his character should, perpetually confused.

I admit, this film has a lot of cheesy moments, but lighten up. Boxing Helena is delightfully strange, and I think it's A LOT better than people have given it credit for. It creates a bizarre, dreamy world, and it's smart enough to acknowledge that anything this weird has to be a dream.

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16 out of 30 people found the following review useful:

One of the best movies I've ever seen

Author: mandy feldstein (
27 February 2002

I can't believe all the bad reviews on this movie. I thought Sherilyn Finch did a beautiful job portraying a woman that is tired of having her butt kissed by men. Women that are worshipped by men have to act that way to repel most guys she doesnt want to deal with. You people call that trash? Thats called being selective b/cause she can be.And Julian Sands is that typical type of guy to worship a girl like her. (Note:Dr.Cavanaugh has everything he wants--even beautiful women wanting him) So, why the hell wouldnt he want Helena????? Any girl who has ever been annoyed by buttkissing guys would adore this movie. He brilliantly manipulates her into falling in love with him too, which I thought that was also perfectly done. People say this movie is "weird" but hey obsession is like that. Everything about this movie is awesome minus Bill Paxton I totally give it a 10/10

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Reminded me of living with a Sociopath

Author: nat-apoth from United States
30 April 2009

I haven't read through all the comments on Boxing Helena, but I first saw this movie in '97 at the recommendation of a friend who knew my husband. It struck a very sharp cord within me because plot line aside, it very much expressed how it feels to be married to a Sociopath. The obsessiveness, ownership, and control, exactly depicted the emotions I felt. If I didn't relate to it on that level I'm not sure I would have appreciated it as much, but for anyone who wants to know what it feels like to be married to a sociopath...see this movie. If you ARE living with a sociopath...see this is very validating. BTW, we are no longer married and I have all my limbs. Marie H

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

I would expect nothing less from a Lynch

Author: QueenofBean
18 October 2003

This movie is comparable to timeless art. The film shots and angles often elude to such a deeper plot than the surface story we're given. A brilliant surgeon haunted by the memory of his heartless mother finds himself obsessing over a woman treats him with similar cruelty. There are so many instances throughout this film that one can't help wondering is this real or just a dream, but only time will tell if Dr. Cavanaugh is really capable of attaining the one thing he desires most: his manhood!

Julian Sands was fantastic, and Sherilyn Fenn made it easy to absolutely loathe Helena at times.

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6 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Compelling, cerebral film, superbly acted

Author: smokehill retrievers from Chancellorsville VA
27 January 2002

Not for the faint of heart, and obviously unpopular among the general public, it's still a well-conceived and nicely-executed piece that made me an instant fan of both Sands and Fenn. It's by no means the run-of-the-mill Saturday night offering with nudity, sex, violence and car chases that seem to be essential to popularity -- instead it has a very unusual, well-crafted script, and actors that can carry the film on their own, assuming an audience with half a brain and an attention span longer than the average third-grader.

If you watch movies just to keep from being bored, or go in primarily for the fast-action and extravagant special effects, this ain't your cup of tea. If you're a serious fan with any sort of developed taste for the craft, give this one a try. It may still not be to your taste, but you're definitely in for something you'll remember.

As a postscript -- Kim Basinger walked out on her contract for this movie, for which we should be eternally grateful. This script required more than bimbo-level acting, and Basinger has never delivered more than mediocre performances in simple-minded roles.

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9 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

Disturbing subject matter otherwise the best movie ever made!

Author: dennis-268 from United States
10 April 2005

In another movie where everything was of the same quality, but produced around a different subject matter, this may have gone down as the greatest movie of our lifetime.

This is the "Cindy Crawford's mole" of movies (if you find moles objectionable). That is; if one is turned off by the story line (violence against women), the other merits of the movie may go unnoticed.

If somehow one could assemble the 1000 best producers, writers, sound, lighting, set design, directors, cameramen, other support crew, etc. to remake this movie, using any actors, living or dead, with an unlimited budget, and given 5 years to complete it, I cannot imagine the movie being any better than the original.

It's simple: If you are turned off by the subject matter, you won't get to enjoy the best movie you'll see in your lifetime.

If, however, you can remember "It's just a movie. This didn't really happen", then you are in for a treat!

The talent could not have been better. The directing could not have been better. The camera-work could not have been better. And, in my opinion, the script could not have been better.

Turn the clock back 90 years, and instead of naming the auto maker "Mercedes" and instead, name it "Crapmobile" and no one would be driving one today. I'm really amazed people are still able to judge a book by it's cover.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Nick Cavanaugh Mansion Address For Die Hards.

Author: Andrew Wilby from United Kingdom, Wakefield, West Yorkshire
12 November 2012

Personally i love the movie & for those lucky people that live in Atlanta or Georgia, Can see the Nick Cavanaugh Mansion which it states on here that it is Lullwater Road, Druid Hills which is wrong. The Correct Address is 3467 Castlegate DR,NW,Atlanta,GA. Sherilyn Fenn Looks Fantastic as Helena & in my opinion her best performance to date as i have seen 22 of her movies. Nick Cavanaugh is a Brilliant Atlanta Surgeon who seems to be Sexually Repressed, & one night meets the Sexy Helena & has a one night stand & falls in love with her & becomes Obsessed by her & everything she stands for. After the Death of his Mother Nick decides to keep the family mansion & throws a house warming party on the chance Helena will arrive & she does not caring for his hospitality. Once she has freshen up in his fountain she goes with one of Nicks Party Guests a fellow Surgeon for a one night stand & leaves her address book. She asks nick to bring her address book to the airport as he tricks her by coming late & so she comes to his mansion to collect, as Nick plays games with her wanting to eat & drink with her she then storms out & gets knock over by a car. Nick then has her captive in his House & amputates her injured leg & gradually finishes the job off by removing both arms & legs as a statue of sexual desire. By then belonging to him & so gradually she becomes dependant on him. A Brilliant film which does'nt get the credit it deserves the story may be daft but the point the director gets across is brilliantly shot with the fantasy dream visions of his mum is fantastic. I would love to see the movie remade.

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8 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Best I have seen

Author: Libor ( from BRNO, Czech Republicz
15 July 2003

Yes it was ten years ago now but I still consider this the most moving movie I have seen. It is one of the best films on power of love. /Other could be Titanic/ The analytic approach do not work here. /Other merit is the contrast of the platonic love and the status of the surgeon./

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