5.4/10
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The Loss of Sexual Innocence (1999)

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1:39 | Trailer
Non-linear film tells the sexual story of a film director from his life at age 5, 12 and 16, a man embarking on his first film in 1950s Tunisia, and finally to his current life. Along the ... See full summary »

Director:

Mike Figgis

Writer:

Mike Figgis

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Julian Sands ... Adult Nic
Saffron Burrows ... English / Italian Twin
Stefano Dionisi ... Luca
Kelly Macdonald ... Susan
Gina McKee ... Susan's Mother
Jonathan Rhys Meyers ... Nic, aged 16
Bernard Hill ... Susan's Father
Rossy de Palma ... Blind Woman
John Cowey John Cowey ... Nic, aged 5
Nina McKay Nina McKay ... Mixed Race Girl
Dickson Osa-Omorogbe Dickson Osa-Omorogbe ... Wangi
Jock Gibson Cowl Jock Gibson Cowl ... Old Colonial Man
Justin Chadwick ... Flash Man
Femi Ogunbanjo ... Adam
Hanne Klintoe ... Eve
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Storyline

Non-linear film tells the sexual story of a film director from his life at age 5, 12 and 16, a man embarking on his first film in 1950s Tunisia, and finally to his current life. Along the way, as a teen, he has sexual exploits with an older woman, gets involved with an Italian couple in Tunisia that culminates in the killing of a local boy and the brutal revenge murder of the woman and, ultimately, is married to a cold woman. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual images, pervasive nudity, violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 January 2000 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Death and Loss of Sexual Innocence See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$50,354, 30 May 1999, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$399,793, 29 August 1999
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This started life as an unstaged theater piece called "Short Stories". See more »

Goofs

Femi Ogunbanjo and Hanne Klintoe, as Adam and Eve, have belly buttons. Since they were not born naturally from a woman's body, they should not have them. See more »


Soundtracks

Nocturne in D Flat Major, Opus 27, No.2
Composed by Frédéric Chopin
Performed by Joanna MacGregor
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User Reviews

Offbeat, disjointed film
30 June 2004 | by rcraig62See all my reviews

Mike Figgis' "Loss of Sexual innocence" is another of his undertakings into the world of film art. It's not quite art, and it's not quite entertaining. The film is expressed in a series of vignettes concerning the sexual maturity of a character called Nic intertwined with other bits that are supposed to represent Adam and Eve and the beginnings of sexual discovery and other bits that either mean something or not. The problem, though, is that the bits don't really add up to anything, not schematically, not thematically. Every time the Nic character reappears at a different age, you don't even get a sense of it being the same person; it always feels like Figgis is starting from scratch all over again with a new set of players.

Figgis is a talented filmmaker, though. He knows how to build a segment for dramatic impact and how to compose a shot for effect, and in those rare moments, it feels like it's not all worthless and Figgis is getting across to the audience on some level. The sketch of Nic and his family stopping at a roadside gas station is a good piece, as is the woman in the see-through cotton dress at the train stop. There is an implied sexuality there, the sexuality that hums all around us, that we experience without really feeling. That's when the movie scores, when it's not just another lame coming-of-age story. But those moments are all too few. On the other hand, the Adam and Eve bits are trite, and one scene where a man carries a shopping bag with a liquor bottle spout protruding (obviously a metaphor for the male penis) is kid stuff, junkyard symbolism at its worst. Where this movie fails is not is in its structure on the screen, but in the mind.

One postscript: After watching it, I put on the director's commentary on the DVD to get maybe a better understanding of what he was trying to do. Figgis narrates with a not-exactly-arrogance but with a tone certainly descending from the mountain. When he spoke the words "we trucked in a load of red clay to recreate the Kenya of my youth", I knew I was done for. I turned it off and switched back to my Sunday Sports Center. 1 1/2 * out of 4


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