During a ten-hour period in January, 1995, porn actress Annabel Chong (1972- ) had sex with 251 men in front of cameras. The resulting video sold more than 40,000 copies (she was never paid... See full summary »
During a ten-hour period in January, 1995, porn actress Annabel Chong (1972- ) had sex with 251 men in front of cameras. The resulting video sold more than 40,000 copies (she was never paid the agreed-upon $10,000). This documentary tells the story of that day and connects it to Chong's life as a student at USC and as the daughter of a middle-class Chinese couple in Singapore. Annabel talks to the camera about her decisions; the camera also follows her to an AIDS test after the world-record-setting sex fest and home to Singapore, where she visits her parents who do not know about her profession and friends and professors who do. Should she tell her mother? Written by
Thoughtful introspective view of one girls trip through life...
Several people have commented on the insight this film gives into the porn industry. That may be true, but it's not what this film is about. The events which unfold over 90 minutes in "Sex: The Annabel Chong Story" are more about one girls trip through life and the choices she made along the way. Many of the reviews have been very judgmental and tend to present Grace as disturbed and in need if therapy. This may be true on a certain level (for example the scene of her self-mutilate "cutting" removes any doubt that self-destruction is in the forefront of her personality) but there is much more to this young woman than that. She has substance. She's intelligent. She has a drive to succeed in life and achieve approval from her peers. Many of her personality traits are in paradox to one another...But more to the question; "Is this a good film?" You're damn right it is. A very good documentary the places a vast array of players, institutions and mechanisms into orbit around Grace and unabashedly reveals her ventures into and out of each circumstance from seeking acceptance from family and friends to navigating through the denizens of the porn industry.
An interesting side note: In the scenes where Grace is visiting the set of porn-starlet Jasmin St. Clairs attempt at "shattering her record" of 251 men in 10 hours, Grace appears to be out of her element and somehow trapped in a place she'd rather not be. In comparison to the people around her, she almost seems innocent and out of place. The whole feel of this shoot (while technically the same style) is directly the opposite of her experience. Grace leaves the set feeling dejected and lost. Her naiveté is glaring in this moment. Don't know if anyone else picked up on this, but I did.
In the end, I like Grace. After watching her go through so much self-inflicted agony with such an air of bravado (real or imagined) I can't help myself. She's all heart. It's a shame that her triumphs (participating in the Cambridge Debate, attending USC, moving on to a grad degree) are overshadowed by the darker elements of the film. And lastly, many Thanks to Grace for having the guts to be honest in presenting the story of her life. Remarkable.
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