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Giving It Up (1999)

Womanizing New York adman attempts to identify the causes of, and find a remedy for, his so-called addiction to sex, in order to win the love of a woman he respects.

Director:

Christopher Kublan

Writers:

Christopher Kublan, Daniel Einfeld (story) (co-writer)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mark Feuerstein ... Ralph Gagante
Amy Redford ... Elizabeth Brenner
Dabney Coleman ... Johnathan Gallant
Ben Weber ... Peter McGrath
James Toback ... Dr. Hubbins
Timothi-Jane Graham Timothi-Jane Graham ... Claire Densen (as Timothi Jane Graham)
Ali Larter ... Amber
James Lesure ... Kevin
Callie Thorne ... Rex
Annabel Rivera Annabel Rivera ... Monica
Mike Johnson ... Jamie (Sex Addict) (as Jon Michael Johnson)
Daniel Metelitz Daniel Metelitz ... John (Sex Addict) (as John Metelitz)
Sara Moon Sara Moon ... Debra (Sex Addict)
Andy Marks ... Jason (Sex Addict) (as Andrew Marks)
Bill Dawes ... Pick-Up Man (Sex Addict)
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Storyline

Meet Ralph, charismatic New York adman about town. Encouraged by his sexist boss and unlucky-in-love buddy Peter, Ralph's life revolves around the pursuit of the opposite sex. Enter his match, smart and beautiful account executive Elizabeth, who is put off by his sex-obsessed ways, convincing Ralph to see a therapist. Just when a relationship between the two begins to flourish, Ralph gets thrown together with supermodel Amber. Now Ralph has to decide whether to change his player-like ways or risk losing the one woman he truly loves. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No touching, no kissing, no sex... no problem.

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content, language and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 September 1999 (Taiwan) See more »

Also Known As:

Casanova Falling See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

Company Credits

Production Co:

Bigel / Mailer Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Was originally titled "Casanova Falling" and sat on the shelf until Feuerstein became a name with "Good Morning, Miami." See more »

Quotes

Johnathan: It's a snatch-22. You love women and they hate you for it.
See more »

Connections

References Shaft (1971) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"The bastard lovechild of 'Sex & the City' and 'What Women Want.' A quirky, re-inventive entertaining romp!"
9 October 2003 | by abyoussefSee all my reviews

by Dane Youssef

Kublan's "Giving it Up" is a movie which is scarce in the indie field. A romantic comedy, rumored to be the worst, sloppiest, unentertaining and most formulaic of the entire genre.

But very surprisingly, "Giving it Up" is a smarter, more-thinking person's romantic comedy. A movie that seems to have filtered out the obnoxious slapstick, trite plot points, dumb characters, monotone dialouge and Julia Roberts and Meg Ryan's routines.

Oh, there are quite a few clichés' in this movie, all right. The playboy who's tired of the game and wants to settle down and develop as a person, the bookish love interest who has no patience for his antics, the sexist supporting characters, the geeky best friend, the unobtainable finally obtained... only to realize that...

And although it sounds like the storyline from "What Women Want" (which also featured Feuerstein), no two movies could possibly be more polar opposite.

But "Giving it Up" is more than that. It doesn't rely entirely on that as so many other rom-coms do.

"GIU" is a well-played, thoughtfully-written, smartly conceived look at men, women and their views on sex and relationships.

In "Giving it Up," a New York advertising executive who specializes in selling sex to sell products is living the "almost ideal existence." He has devoted his life to attracting the opposite sex.

And it seems to be working. He has a new stranger in his bed every night. He's making fat cheddar. His hard-nosed, sexist boss (Dabney Coleman "9 to 5," "Tootsie," "Recess: School's Out" and "You've Got Mail") loves him. His apartment is lavish and full of cosmetics to polish his vessel and keep it clean. And his superhuman libido fuels his creative fires.

Enter his new boss, Elizabeth, who has heard of him and his reputation. She's smart and genuinely attractive. And quite down to earth. Ralph (Mark Feuerstein "Woman on Top" and "What Women Want"), the playboy in question is instantly smitten with her. But she's heard the word on the street and smiles, giving him the brush off.

Ralph is obsessed. He wants her. He can have every woman except the one he truly wants. Ain't it always the way? Ralph's less-lucky-in-love buddy, Peter (Ben Weber-- "Twister" and TV's "Sex in the City") asks Ralph why? Why does he want to give up the life? Apparently, Ralphie boy feels empty. He decides to "give it all up."

He's the falling Casanova. He tries to go celibate. He meets up with Elizabeth and informs her of his newfound desire to live a life with something besides sex and even tries to win her over with his outside sex-interests. Like his joy for Billy Wilder's Cary Grant-Audrey Hepburn classic "Love in the Afternoon."

Kublan's script is smart in a "Sex in the City"-type of way. Full of realistic conversations between men and women about dating, relationships, sex and their own views and look at it all.

The cast is particularly strong for an independent film. Feuerstein is a real charmer, Weber and James Lesure (From "For Your Love") are convincing and likable as his best friends. Ari Larter as the foul and lecherous super-supermodel Amber is also good for a few laughs. Amy Redford is really 100% believable as a smart, intelligent, confident (and beautiful) businesswoman who hates her self a bit for falling for this falling Casanova.

See it alone for the near Oscar-worthy performance of the magnificent Dabney Coleman, more hard-nosed, sexist and snarling than ever.

It's worth falling for.

--Having Fallen Himself, Dane Youssef


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