HEAVY PETTING is a hilarious and salacious exploration of the sexual mores of the 50's as seen through the eyes of a generation that lived through the Sexual Revolution. Creative baby boomers-- including musician David Byrne, performance artist Spalding Gray, comedian Sandra Bernhard, radical activist Abbie Hoffman, and poet Allen Ginsberg-- candidly recall their sexual coming-f-age tales in intimate interviews. Joyously campy and refreshingly carefree, HEAVY PETTING blends humorous, unbelievable footage of unhelpful sex-ed films with classic snippets of THE WILD ONE and Elvis' hip gyrations, not to mention Bernhard talking about playing "doctor", always observant Ginsberg on a disastrous encounter with a girl, and Byrne on the childhood myths of masturbation. Eternal mysteries such as the female orgasm, the universal appeal of Marilyn Monroe, and the rituals of high school are laid bare by this lovable group of characters.Written by
"Heavy Petting" is an entertaining documentary featuring an extraordinary cast of people talking about their recollections of sex back in the '50s. Amidst the testimonials of these writers, musicians, actors/actresses, and... tradespeople and businessmen (?) the movie is constantly interspersed with footage of movies, TV shows and after-school specials that demonstrate some of the old timey attitudes the interviewees are speaking about.
The cast includes David Byrne, Sandra Bernhard, Spalding Gray, Allen Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs, Laurie Anderson, Oates from Hall and Oates, and a few others who aren't famous nor in the entertainment industry, making their inclusion surprising when you realise they're not famous like the others.
With all the quick edits, and at times too-quick contributions from the stars, the movie moves along like rapid fire. It's entertaining, but I didn't learn much from watching it.
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