A look at the life of Alfred Kinsey, a pioneer in the area of human sexuality research, whose 1948 publication "Sexual Behavior in the Human Male" was one of the first recorded works that saw science address sexual behavior.
Called Prok as an adult (short for Professor Kinsey), Alfred Kinsey has been interested in biology since he was a child growing up in the early twentieth century, despite the criticisms of such being nonsense from his overbearing and devoutly Christian father, professor Alfred Seguine Kinsey. Prok goes on to become a biology professor at Indiana University, initially focusing on the study of gall wasps. But those studies in combination with questions from his students, coming to terms with the needs of sex with his own wife, a former student of his named Clara McMillen (who he calls Mac), and what he sees as the gross misinformation on the subject currently within popular belief makes him change his focus to human sexuality. Many of those gross untruths - as he sees them - are that oral sex and masturbation cause a slew of maladies, which are perpetuated by what is presented in the university's hygiene class taught by Professor Thurman Rice. With the approval of faculty head Herman ... Written by
On the DVD commentary, director Bill Condon reveals that he wanted to include in a montage a clip from I Love Lucy (1951) in which a character makes a joking reference to Dr. Alfred Kinsey's research. Condon says that he was unable to use the clip because Lucie Arnaz (the daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz) denied him the rights, offering very little explanation aside from claiming that her parents would never allow themselves to be associated with Kinsey. See more »
When young Kinsey argues with his father in the general store, the actor's prosthetic nose is extremely visible, several shades darker than his skin with wrinkly edges See more »
At the end of the film (following the main cast credits), a montage featuring Kinsey Institute footage of the mating habits of various animals is accompanied by "Fever" by Little Willie John. See more »
I read some of the reviews on IMDb before I went to see the movie. And I was struck by some of the negative comments it received. Even in this day and age, there is a double-standard on "moral values".
Hypocrisy vs. common sense. The movie cleverly reveals that Kinsey helped us along the way, to become open about such a basic but non-the-less extremely vital part of our existence. True, some of his subjects were pedophiles or engaged in sex practices that most people would find offensive. However, the knowledge that he as a scientist derived from his studies, is immeasurable - it enables intimate insight into the human psyche, and with that, possible treatments for those that are sexually victimizing others.
And this is the key point: the law should protect life, the innocent (under-aged and animals) and of course, the non-consenting. Other than that, sex is something between consenting adults and no-one should have the right to outlaw what you do in the bedroom. If you listen closely, the movie will give you the same message.
My only complaint is perhaps that on the subject of "perversion" they barely scratched the surface on Kinsey's personal response. It was clear that as a scientist, he would continue on the path of knowledge, however dark it may have been. I would probably agree that the movie version of his life and work was toned down to a "pill small enough to swallow" - still, I feel it shows the audience enough to get a picture of who this man was.
Don't expect "adult entertainment" when going to this movie. There is little that will cause an open-minded, sexually in touch with him-/herself adult embarrassment or even excitement. It's more like a documentary.
The acting was superb on everybody's part, and Academy Award Nominations will be forth-coming - no doubt. Hopefully they will take some wins home.
A wake-up call for a prudish nation and a must see in my (European :)) book.
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