Thanks for Sharing (2012) Poster

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'It's like trying to quit crack while the pipe is attached to your body.'
gradyharp16 February 2014
'It's like trying to quit crack while the pipe is attached to your body' Stuart Blumberg is a director who takes chances (The Girl Next Door , The Kids Are All Right, Keeping the Faith). Using a screenplay he wrote in conjunction with actor Matt Winston he approaches a subject rarely touched upon (or even known about to the general public) – sex addiction – and with the very capable assistance of a superb cast of actors he brings it off. The film may disturb some, especially those easily offended by the degree of self indulgence that story addresses, but stay with this story to the end and be enlightened and touched by the triumph of the human spirit over seemingly insurmountable odds.

The story centers around three sex addicts who must attend 12 step meetings, have a sponsor, and refrain from onanism or frottage or viewing pornography, sharing their shortcomings at eh meetings of fellow addicts. Adam (Mark Ruffalo) is an environmental consultant whose has been 'sober' for five years and has as his sponsor Mike (Tim Robbins), a small business owner married to the supportive Katie (Jowly Richardson) with whom he has a disowned alcoholic son Danny (Patrick Fugit), and who is sponsor to the obese foolhardy voyeuristic frottage obsessed ER Doc Neil (Josh Gad) whose mother Roberta (Carol Kane) has no clue about her son's debilitating condition. The three men – Adam, Mike, and Neil - interact in needy ways and each faces a crisis he must address: Adam finally meets a girl to whom he can possibly relate, breast cancer survivor Phoebe (Gwyneth Paltrow); Mike must deal with his son Danny's return to the nest; Neil becomes tied to Dede (Pink) who is a sex addict of the first order and desperate to change. It all works in at times confusing ways, but always with a focus on the fragility of the addicted human being – no matter the source of dependency.

The film has its light moments, but it is certainly more of a drama than a comedy – except for the fact that 'all of life in the human comedy.' It is good to see a capable group take on a controversial subject and deliver it well.
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This movie tells it like it is. Someone in Hollywood finally did their homework.
JeffBatHome3 October 2013
Warning: Spoilers
I write this review from the viewpoint of someone who is in recovery from sex addiction. I have attended 12-Step, anonymous "S" meetings (SLAA, SAA, SA, etc) for 23 years. In that time I have seen it all, so I can say from experience that "Thanks for Sharing" tells it like it is for those of us who struggle with sex addiction in recovery.

The movie itself follows multiple addicts whose recovery stories weave around each other. There are no plot twists, just a series of seemingly random, real life events and situations which plague addicts, and how addicts in recovery deal with them, sometimes successfully and sometimes not, but always making progress and learning how to live life.

The movie depicts a surprisingly complete spectrum of victories, failures, and facts of recovery: meetings, sponsorship, relapses into addiction, a "crash", a "crash and burn", job loses, near relapses, just-in-time phone calls, phone calls which went unanswered at critical times, suspicious girlfriends, wary wives, male addicts, female addicts, addict parents having to confront the affects of their addiction on their own children, addicts having to deal with their abusive parents, starting a healthy relationship with another addict in recovery or with a non-addict, the confusion caused by sex after long abstinence from sex, multiple addictions, and, above all, a message of hope and freedom. It's all there, and it's there in a surprisingly compact story.

The movie importantly points out a critical difference between sex addiction and substance abuse, and that is that substance abusers do not have their "drug of choice" manufactured within their own bodies, and that recovery from sex addiction is not about abstaining from sex forever but is about getting into a healthy relationship with sex.

"Thanks for Sharing" evoked strong feelings in me because I have "been there and done that". There were a couple of scenes where persons new to recovery were staggered by the new hope that was shown to them. I cried at those scenes because I *remember* that exact feeling from when I first started going to meetings. And I cringed when characters with long-term abstinence relapsed or nearly relapsed. I myself once relapsed back into active addiction when I was not able to get in touch with my sponsor, a reality eerily similar to one situation in this movie.

There were some mild sex scenes; R-rated stuff. It would be hard to make a movie about sex addiction without depicting at least some sex. These scenes were not gratuitous but were an integral part of the story, so I had no difficulty with them: I just shut my eyes to stay connected with the story rather than be distracted by the view.

My only negative remarks on the realism of this movie are that the meetings depicted had more of a "flavor" of an NA (Narcotics Anonymous) meeting. One is MUCH more likely to be hugged at an NA meeting than at "S" meetings since recovering sex addicts tend to have a lot of issues around body contact. Then there is the manner in which people were depicted as sharing at meetings. I can't really put a finger on what the difference is but the dialog was much more like the way people share in NA meetings.

But the above are minor observations compared to how much the movie got right. Someone really did their homework to get so much right. And someone really put some effort into keeping "Thanks for Sharing" from becoming a "sexploitation" movie. Last but not least, the cast, writers, and director did a really good job of creating credible characters in an accurate story.

I wish I'd seen this movie sooner so that I could have added my review sooner.
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It's really not a comedy
umrat6 October 2013
Calling this a romantic comedy brings to mind the kind of thing that would have Lisa Kudrow or Jennifer Aniston alongside Patrick Dempsey or Ben Stiller.

Yes, it has several "boy meets girl" moments, but the overall premise of the movie has romance as a side issue and is definitely not a comedy.

On the whole, I enjoyed it, although bits of it were tough to watch, with some strongly adult themes and it definitely wasn't what I was expecting. Anything that focuses on addiction isn't going to be a walk in the park, but selling it as a romantic comedy is misleading and does the film a disservice.

The main cast were great and their characters were interesting. More importantly, the film didn't suffer from the current trait of being too long for the storyline.
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Unforgettable, but we can't handle the truth.
garrettsorenson20 September 2013
This is now my favorite movie this year; I've completely forgotten Blue Jasmine, which was quite good…I think. All of the performances were solid and believable, but Josh Gad's 'moment of failure' completely destroyed me. He is absolutely Beta Male gold in this film, and so inspiring. The duet scenes between Paltrow and Ruffalo were magical: I fully believed in the romantic spark (I can't remember when an infatuation seemed more real on the screen.) Tim Robbins and Patrick Fugit made me cry for the SECOND time toward the end--fantastic stuff. I immediately called my wife and my brother to tell them I loved them…It's just freakin' great, this movie. However, this is NOT a romantic comedy. This is a serious drama with comedic elements. Blumburg and Winston turned in an incredible script that constantly avoided being trite or Hollywood where it easily could have for laughs. I must say that I am not surprised AT ALL at the lackluster ratings: Sex addiction is tooooo touchy for Americans.
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Realism with the breadth of light heartedness
vanettelstarr24 February 2014
I loved this movie!!! bravo for the brave souls who tackled it! I own a masters as a movie connoisseur, and have some familiarity with the 12 step program, myself. Amazing and righteously done! This film is so close to the experiences of an addict and or co-addict, that I was utterly convinced that the many who worked on this film really have a grasp on how quickly ones path can take a dark turn, if he/she is honest enough with themselves to broach this topic and turn themselves over to 12 step community and a higher power to get the help they need.This film elegantly captures the reality of "the life". Grace and nurture are definitely found and used, here, in the face of such grim subject matter of this film, which for some means life and death. This is a beautiful compassionate film which shows not only how tough relationships are in a "normal persons" life, but goes out of its way to show how much harder they are for those who face the imbalance of sexual/relational addiction in ones life; but it offers it in a compassionate mannerism of hope and faith in the light of such difficulties for those who are afflicted. WE still don't know what causes the mind this imbalance, but Im grateful that there are those out in the entertainment biz, who handle such delicate matters with a grace, compassion, love for our human brothers and sisters who suffer with this (and similar maladies), and maybe even offer a light to a better path...perhaps even an easier softer approach for many circumstance covered in this piece of work. Its not just a piece of art, but educational informative work and sometimes shows we can approach life with all the joy, humor and brevity needed to get us through one day at a time. Even one those played their part were showing the honesty of how humans behave and how forgiveness and love goes sooo far in the human condition of recovery. Thanks to all who worked on this film; its beautifully honest while being real.
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A Great Watch! 7/10
leonblackwood8 February 2014
Review: For years, the subject matter about sex addiction has carried a certain stigma that someone is a pervert, but this movie proves otherwise. It shows that ordinary every day people with normal life's can be addicted to sex and that it's a hard addiction to deal with. That's what made the movie a joy to watch because this subject matter hadn't really addressed. The acting from the all star cast, was brilliant and they made the movie believable and enjoyable. Even Pink put in a great performance and her role was chosen well by the director. Each character shows how they deal with there addiction and the trouble that it can cause in there everyday life's. It's definitely one of those movies that will change peoples perception on the addiction and I'm glad that the director also showed that women can also suffer from this disease. In all, a great watch and one not to miss. Great Movies!

Round-Up: It's good to see Tim Robbins back on screen after being missing for a while. His role was also chosen well by the director, as well as Mark Ruffalo and Gwenyth Paltrow who showed the addiction from a different angle. It's a shame that movies like this don't get the big Hollywood treatment because it will be forgotten even though it is a great movie.

Budget: N/A Worldwide Gross: $1million

I recommend this movie to people who are into there dramas and a group of people who suffer from sex addiction. 7/10
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entertainment with some meaning
cinematic_aficionado10 October 2013
Somewhere between Indy cinema and mainstream Hollywood as well as treading between comedy and drama, this is not an implication that it suffers from an identity crisis but more of an affirmation that genre boundaries do not have to be definite to produce an acceptable result.

The main corpus of the story is three sex addicts and their struggle to overcome it and it makes a point that a paramount factor in recovery is not so much the discipline to abstain from sexual stimulants but being surrounded by people who you can depend upon in the good as well as the bad days. In other words, community is paramount.

Overall, it is both a pleasant and poignant story that explores the isolation and darkness associated with this condition. A minus point would be the complete lack of background information on the illness although this is more than compensated in the battle these individual give not only to get better but to be accepted by others.

So a film that is both amusing with some is no little thing.
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Underrated, definitely worth a watch.
apacible16 October 2013
I actually laughed pretty hard in this. What I was really impressed with was the contrasting emotions throughout the entire movie and it dealt with a somewhat overlooked issue in society these days. The movie didn't really slow down at all and there was always something happening. Acting is great but that's to be expected with Mark Ruffalo and Gwenyth Paltrow. Josh Gad is hilarious as always an definitely has all the laugh out loud moments. While I'm not a fan of P!nk in any capacity, she holds herself well in this role. I'm not sure why it got a fairly average 6.3 on IMDb and a 54 on Metacritic. Perhaps it is a bit confrontational in some aspects for some people but it isn't advertised as a feel good romantic comedy. Even if you don't see it in the theatres, make sure you get it on DVD, you won't regret it.
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Winning in parts but generally uneven.
shawneofthedead24 December 2013
Romantic comedies have been running out of ideas for decades - thinking up fresh, interesting and yet plausible ways to break up a couple who are clearly meant for each other is no laughing matter. Bravely, Thanks For Sharing selects sex addiction as its theme, exploring the ways in which the disease bleeds into and affects the relationships of its victims. At its best, Stuart Blumberg's first film as a director smartly mines laughs amidst the drama of his protagonists' lives, just as his script for The Kids Are All Right did. More often than not, however, Thanks For Sharing suffers from an uneven tone, lurching uncomfortably from comedy to drama and back again.

Adam (Mark Ruffalo), a sex addict who's managed to stay sober for five years, is nervous about re-entering the dating field despite the encouragement of his mentor Mike (Tim Robbins). He quickly changes his mind when he meets Phoebe (Gwyneth Paltrow), although he soon realises that coming clean to her about his disease will be the one of the hardest things he's ever done. At the same time, Neil (Josh Gad) struggles with the sobriety programme, desperate to hang on to his medical license but unable to overcome the worst of his symptoms.

Blumberg's efforts are laudable, even if not entirely successful. He tries to give the topic the dramatic weight it deserves, never making light of the problems suffered by Adam, Mike and Neil. In fact, he renders the affliction more easily understandable: demonstrating that it is a sickness while drawing out the implications of being addicted to something that's such a fundamental cornerstone of human relationships. But, as a result, the film dances somewhat out of Blumberg's control. He plays one relapse for laughs, and another for horror, and doesn't quite manage to knit the two extremes together.

It doesn't help that Blumberg invests most of his time in the film's blander relationships. The push and pull between Adam and Phoebe is well-acted (and a real kick for Marvel movie enthusiasts who might like to imagine Bruce Banner and Pepper Potts cheating on Tony Stark with each other), but it falters when it hits that dramatic speed-bump. Mike's troubled relationships with his long-suffering wife Katie (Joely Richardson) and drug addict son Danny (Patrick Fugit) feel forced and obvious. It's the almost joyful, fizzy friendship between Neil and fellow addict Dede (a wonderfully natural Alecia Moore a.k.a., Pink) that walks off with the film's biggest laughs and sweetest moments.

At the heart of Thanks For Sharing lies a smart, complicated message about making relationships work: how acceptance, openness and truth can go a long way towards solving seemingly insurmountable problems. Unfortunately, that message gets buried a little beneath the film's too many layers of comedy, romance and drama.
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Better than expected
Trzy 912 October 2013
Firstly, this is NOT a romantic comedy. It's a drama all the way. Secondly, I went in not expecting much but the storyline is very touching. It made me sympathize with the characters and really feel for them as sex addiction is a very real disease. The acting by all was magnificent, Pink was awesome and I am not usually a huge fan. Only two downfalls for me, one being the ending could have been better which leads me to my next point, there were a few moments in the movie that didn't quite make sense and should have been followed up later or explained but then the movie ended with no explanations. Other than that it was a very enjoyable movie.
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adventurer_ci15 June 2014
My attention to this movie only lasted 27 min,quite a long time to attract one's interest to continue. So what did it show in the first 27 minutes? Empty, pointless and dull dialogues that have nothing to do with developing of the story. That verbal exchange between Adam and Phoebe in a park was annoying and meaningless. Josh Gad's character was quite absurdous and did not go well with me. The scene where he talked to a doctor and some sort of device fell out of his sleeve was the point where I decided to stop wasting my time. Tim Robbins could not be associated with his character. The group "sharing" part was very bad,especially Dede's (Pink).Well, I could only last through her introduction. And above all,we have seen it all many many times before-the 12 step program.Nothing is new or original here-not a material for a movie.
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Waste of Talent and Time
nerfball_king27 January 2014
Warning: Spoilers
To be clear, this isn't really a comedy, whether it be an indie comedy, romantic comedy or any other genre one would consider. It's about a group of men who have a hard time controlling an overwhelming sexual desire, some guys battling chemical dependency issues, someone who beat cancer, etc. If you're expecting this to be something with a lot of laughs, look elsewhere, chum, because this ain't it.

The movie did have some good performances, although one of the minor characters you just wanna slug. Also, some of the requirements for maintaining the "sobriety" of not having sex seemed a bit unbelievable, and conflicted with having a healthy sexual life.
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wilson trivino3 October 2013
Thanks for Sharing looks into the world of addition and their support groups. How individuals create support networks to deal with problems. In this, the maid addition is sexual, these people can't stop having sex, but you soon discover it is more than the act but a real disease of obsessions. There is Neil (Josh Gad), the doctor who has been court ordered to seek treatment, Neil the overall good guy is overcoming his problems until he tries to connect the release of sex and emotional connection as he begins to date Phoebe (Gwyneth Partrow) and Dede (Pink) who can't relate with a man unless it deals with sex. Tim Robbins does an exceptional job of being the counselor leader as he deals with own home life turmoil with a drug addicted son. This movie is insightful of addiction and the difficulty of staying clean, no matter what your addition may be.
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I hate everyone except for you
tieman646 December 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Stuart Blumberg directs "Thanks for Sharing", arguably the best of a recent spate of films about sex addiction ("Don Jon", "Shame", "Nymphomaniac", "Welcome to New York" etc).

The plot? Several men and women assemble periodically at a support group for addicts. Some are alcoholics, some have anger issues, some have eating disorders, but most are addicted to pornography or intercourse. All find their public lives wrecked by seemingly uncontrollable urges.

Though flatly photographed, and though peppered with indie-clichés, "Thanks for Sharing" is elevated by some fine acting. Mark Ruffalo and Gwyneth Paltrow are cute as a couple of dysfunctional lovers, and pop-star Pink is excellent as Dede, a young woman addicted to bouts of sex. Tim Robbins, always charismatic, gets the film's least interesting subplot; he's a middle aged man attempting to reconcile with his wayward son.

Whilst "Sharing" has a certain wisdom about it, it nevertheless never really gets to the root of why its characters are suffering. The external factors, or social causes, which push these characters toward addiction are never brought up, though this is largely because Blumberg's characters are all shameful and so guarded about their pasts. "Sharing" was Blumberg's debut.

7.9/10 - Worth one viewing.
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I could say the same to co-writer/director Stuart Blumberg
Steve Pulaski8 January 2014
One of the most prevalent wrongdoings for marketing a film about a heavy-subject is making the film appear to be a comedy or a light-hearted drama based on the design of the film's theatrical poster. This worried me right off the bat with Stuart Blumberg's Thanks for Sharing, which is marketed with a poster that is largely white and includes three separate pictures of happy, smiley couples with the corny tagline "life is a journey you never have to take alone." Learning the film was about sex addiction from its trailer, I couldn't even begin to say how vague and general they kept this poster and feared that, since addiction of any kind is hard for American audiences to digest, this marketing campaign would effective limit or dilute the true impact writer and director Stuart Blumberg was going for.

However, Thanks for Sharing lives up to its poster, as it is a pretty straight-laced, surface-level drama about sex addiction, one that looks at the film from a slight drama angle but prefers to allow comedy to rear its head in several places. Ostensibly, the film is likely to be dismissed by real-life sex addicts, who will find the film nothing but dismissive to a serious disease, and for that, serious points need be deducted from the film's overall performance. However, examining this picture from a lens analyzing competence and strength of writing, this is a passable little dramaedy that occasionally does offer some moments of stunning purity and vulnerability amongst its subjects, regardless of how pretty they look on a poster that is eighty-percent white.

The film focuses on three different people in New York City, all of whom sex addicts with a similar severity level and all of whom are in the same sort of twelve-step program for treatment and assistance. Adam (Mark Ruffalo) is your average, attractive male, who looks as if he has nothing to hide, until he meets Phoebe (Gwyneth Paltrow), a hilarious woman who just so happens to be very sexually promiscuous and constantly looking for new ways to spice up her sex life in her relationships. Meanwhile, Neil (Josh Gad, who was also seen as Steve Wozniak in the Jobs biopic in 2013) is a pudgy clown of a guy, who is quick with a joke, but also deeply a victim to his disease. A doctor, one day he resorts to attempting to film up one of his coworker's skirts. He states it's for a documentary he's making called "What the Ground Sees." And then there's Mike (Tim Robbins), an older soul, with a family, who is trying to cope with sex addiction. He has a wife (Joely Richardson) and an adult son (Patrick Fugit), both of whom are aware of his complications and try to be there for him, despite recognizing that he still has his own personal wrongs he has yet to right. A bold scene comes late in the film, which is a fight between Mike and his son. The unwritten book of movie conventions states that a family must fight at a certain point in the film, but thanks to the timing and the speed of both Robbins and Fugit, this instance makes for one unsettling couple minutes, as real issues are thrown out in the open, and both characters - particularly Robbins' Mike - are seen at their most vulnerable.

Then there's Dede (Alecia Moore, better known by her pop stage-name as "Pink"), a unique, free-spirited sex addict who befriends clumsy Neil, as she admires his determination to not only keep himself off the track of careless sex but her as well. Moore acts just the way you'd expect her to act - wild, a little crazy with a tell-it-like-it-is personality combined with the ability to fly by the seat of her pants. With this being her first real acting role, I'd be the first to see Moore act in another picture, where her character is given enough space to move between comedy and drama. This is a tougher role to handle for a first time acting gig and Moore shows little struggle. What attracted her to the material is beyond me, but persistency in Hollywood could lead her to receive more performances that allow for deeply-rooted humanism to take affect, even more-so than what could be found in Thanks for Sharing.

When it comes down to the film's depiction of sex addiction, let's just say, this isn't necessarily the film a twelve-step program on sex is likely going to advertise. It's way too oversimplifying, rarely diving into the horrors of such a nasty and depressing disease that many people are quick to pass judgment on. Not to mention, when the film does try to dive into the horrors and the uncontrollable urges sex addicts are likely to have, Blumberg and co-writer Matt Winston are quick to rebound to more lighthearted comedic tone so as not to offend or alienate. The film plays drastically different instruments than Steve McQueen's Shame, one of the bleakest yet most profound films I have yet to see on the topic of addiction.

But, as established, Thanks for Sharing is nine miles away from Shame in many different respects; the only logical comparison is that both deal with an addiction that has gone under the radar as drug and alcohol addiction take prominence. Blumberg does an adequate job at incorporating comedy to a story that would seemingly only work under dramatic circumstances and for that the film deserves a big plus for courage. The fact that the actors also provide a grand amount of energy (Josh Gad is a real find of an actor, who I see going on to portray roles of even higher dramatic prominence) deserves another plus. While the entire ordeal may drag a bit and the conclusion seems a bit too clean, Thanks for Sharing is not without its benefits, which involve some of the most difficult things for dramaedies to get right.
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Only Funny When It Tries Not to be Funny
themissingpatient7 January 2014
Mark Ruffalo, Tim Robbins and Josh Gad play sex addicts at different phases in their life, dealing with their addiction. Tim Robbins' son is a drug-addict who comes home stating he is clean and sober. Mark Ruffalo starts dating Gwyneth Paltrow while trying to be a sponsor to Josh Gad, a newcomer who has become friends with a female sex addict, Pink.

It's hard to tell what makes Tim Robbins and Mark Ruffalo's characters sex addicts at first. They seem more addicted to their meetings and open, talkative relationships with one another. Josh Gad's character, on the other hand, is just a normal role for that type of character to be in modern comedies. A pervert. It uncomfortably tries to make us laugh at his behavior and then condemns what it has just shown us. The film goes on to do it again later with Mark Ruffalo's character. A sex scene that shows a lot of skin in a film that says pornography is bad.

At first it's hard to tell whether scenes, outside of the meetings, are really that poorly written or just poorly improvised. We hope that maybe we'll learn something about sex addiction, since the film seems to be a big budget promotional video for 12-step programs, but we don't even get that. This lazy romantic comedy is pandering to women who already believe sex addiction is a real disease and want to sympathize with these men.

The film does do a good job at making you not hate Josh Gad's character as much towards the end, when you see he's a good guy deep down. As long as you're not a woman caught on the subway alone with him, he won't try to rape you.

This is not a funny comedy whatsoever. However Thanks for Sharing might have you laughing when the film is trying to be dramatic.
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Extremely boring
M B28 September 2013
Neither my husband nor I at all enjoyed this film. I was surprised given the positive critic reviews and the fact Paltrow has a leading role. First off, the plot didn't provide any reason to care about the characters in the movie. Besides that, it was an extremely boring movie. You would think a movie about sex addicts would be funny, entertaining, interesting...but NOPE! I think we laughed maybe once during the entire film. I'm usually a fan of dramas and did not find the plot intriguing at all...just a few people going through therapy that are addicted to sex. That is really all that happens! Neither of us really cared what happened and were just happy to get out of the theater. When the movie started, there were two other couples in the theater and both left. I usually don't write reviews but noticed there were two positive reviews on here and had to speak up!
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Self-indulgent waste of digital celluloid
modernart16 January 2014
Warning: Spoilers
I had high hopes for the movie, liking several of the actors. It was a complete and total disappointment. Seemed some personal and completely self-indulgent exercise by Stuart Blumberg. Maybe he is an addict and did this hoping it would be personally cathartic or helpful. Was not at all pleasant to watch. Poorly written. The story arc actually went nowhere, almost literally starting the main character back exactly where he was at the opening. Actually worse off. So no character progress, no humor, no wit (what could Jane Austin have done with the "story"?). No redeeming qualities whatsoever, no take away, nothing worth remembering.
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Noble effort in depicting sex addicts attempts at normalcy; fine cast shines
george.schmidt20 September 2013
Warning: Spoilers
THANKS FOR SHARING (2013) *** Mark Ruffalo, Tim Robbins, Gwyneth Paltrow, Josh Gad, Joely Richardson, Patrick Fugit, Pink, Carol Kane, Emily Meade, Isiah Whitlock Jr., Michaela Watkins, Pooma Jagannathan. Dramedy about sex addicts attempting to acclimate to their daily surroundings at varying stages of therapy focusing on three members/sponsors: Ruffalo as a 5 years sober finding himself in a possible relationship with new prospect Paltrow; Robbins as his sponsor who has his hands full with the sudden arrival of estranged son Fugit (himself a substance abuser); and downward spiraling newbie Gad who winds up the unlikely friend-in- need to a fellow female member (singer Pink in a decent on screen acting debut). While noble efforts are made by scribe-turned-director Stuart Blumberg (his debut) and co-writer/actor Matt Winston's fairly workable screenplay there are a few moments of false notes (SPOILER ALERT: i.e. Paltrow's too-soon moves on Ruffalo after his confession) yet the performances are well handled (but would it have killed the filmmakers to avoid making Gad a sloven walking fat joke?)
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Movie with a Lot of Heart
richardsnewsong7 October 2013
There is a lot to like about this movie. Great ensemble performances by Mark Ruffalo, Gwyneth Paltrow, Tim Robbins, Joely Richardson, Josh Gad and Pink put a very human face on the different stages of dealing with and recovering from the real life tragedy of sex and love addiction. I consider this a wonderful "feel good" movie that has a broad range of emotions - both comic and tragic - the producers took a big risk to focus on this subject matter as there is the likelihood that a portion of the movie going audience could feel uncomfortable about the overt sexuality portrayed, even though I see it as tastefully done. Interestingly enough, the people I have talked to have echoed my sense that this is a wonderful movie....I wish it well.

There is a lot to laugh about in this movie but this movie is more than just a comedy. There is plenty of poignant drama in this movie also, and I found myself alternately laughing and crying as I found myself connecting and caring about the characters and hoping for good outcomes. As in real life, the results are mixed and at times, messy...

Joely Richardson plays Monica, the long suffering wife of Mike (Tim Robbins), a recovering "cross addicted" alcoholic/sex addict with 15 years of "sobriety" and unfortunately, there is not enough time in a 2 hour movie to flesh out her character. Clearly Mike (Tim Robbins) has made his recovery a big part of his life - what is sometimes called a "bleeding deacon" - and the relationship between Monica (Joely Richardson) and Mike seems harmonious until their addict son Danny (Patrick Fugit) returns home and the tension between a Mom and Dad dealing with their son in a dysfunctional family system gets played out.

Featured early on is Adam (Mark Ruffalo), a sex addict with 5 years of "sobriety" who is "sponsored" by Mike and ready to start dating again after choosing total abstinence to get his addiction under control. The great lengths Adam goes to in achieving sobriety seems rather ridiculous until you realize the powerful nature of addiction, which is the subject of a later portion of the movie and some of Ruffalo's best work as you feel his pain as he strives for "normalcy". Enter Phoebe (Gyneth Paltrow) as Adam's new love interest. Phoebe is a cancer survivor and her relationship with food and fitness are intriguing. A primary focus of their growing love and infatuation centers on Adam's deep fears around being love and accepted. The movie made me care about Adam and Phoebe both, hoping for a good outcome and a happy ending. I credit the writer's for taking us on some unexpected twists and turns that serve to highlight the reality of the disease of sex and love addiction and how it effects relationships.

Josh Gad is the comic relief in the movie - His character Neil is a young ER Doctor in the early stages of recovery from sex addiction and the movie takes a sympathetic look at the challenges and slips of making big changes in life to achieve sobriety early on. Neil is like a lot of sex addicts in early recovery - not taking it seriously until his addiction forces him to go deeper. Pink is a scene stealer as Dede, a female sex addict also going through the torment of early recovery from sex and love addiction...yes, it happens to females too. The growing friendship between Neil and Dede is another element where you really care how things will turn out.

OK the movie is far from perfect. Some might see the Paltrow character as shallow but that is the point: she has her own albeit different issues - dealing with her own demons - and the attraction between Adam and Phoebe makes sense as they are both finding a mirror into some deep stuff. Will they stay or will they run? The family drama and tension around Mike, Monica and Danny seems somewhat contrived and I attribute that to the movie choosing to deal with the deep topic of family dynamics and attempting to wrap things up in less then 2 hours. Trust me - everything that happens is plausible in real life even if you may see it coming ahead of time.

So yes, I like this movie. I like this movie a lot. I will confess my bias as I am a sex and love addiction professional (and recovering myself) and yet, my only stake in this all is that I hope the movie will succeed enough that it will allow others in the movie industry to take risks like this to entertain and educate us in the sense that the movie handles this controversial movie topic with sympathy, humor and accuracy in depicting the disease and the road to recovery.

And, at the end of the day, I left this movie entertained. I laughed...a lot....I got choked up and cried. I applauded endings that were not totally cliché and yet, offered hope for a brighter tomorrow.

Go see this movie. Go see this movie with someone you love and care about. It will open you up and make you feel....If you remember and enjoyed "My Life as a House" with Kevin Kline...this is your kind of movie...
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Sex Lives of the Recovering Addicts or "Don't play with it or it'll fall off!"
Sergio Campanale8 October 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Made in 2012, this strange little film is now finally seeing the light of day.

Ostensibly, the film is a blend of serious "issue" drama (in this case Sex addiction and the battle to beat it using the AA 12 step programme) and a romantic comedy, though the mixture is often a little off-putting and intoxicating, as if mixed by a competent but not expert barman.

The film follows the stories of three New York "Sex Addicts anonymous" members at three distinct stages of 12 step treatment: Start - Middle - Veteran. The "vet" is Mike (Tim Robbins) who has been "sober" of both sex and other vices (drink and drugs mainly) for over 15 years and is the head guru of this circle. His protégé is Adam (Mark Ruffalo) a successful eco-businessman who is also a sex addict, and has been "clean" for 5 years. Adam has been sober enough now to have his own "paduan", in this case typical comic overweight Jewish nerd-boy doctor Neil (Josh Gad) who finds his kicks touching up women on subways, looking up fellow employees skirts and copious masturbation (no actual sex for the sad fattie though eh?) who is there courtesy of a court order and psychiatric report.

The three each have their own little "dramas" that intercutting and crossing, make up the film. Mike finds his happiness challenged when his twentysomething son Danny (Patrick Fugit) turns up out of the blue. A former drug addict who had stolen from his parents, he is eager to make amends with both his father and his mother Katie (Joely Richardson), Mike however is defensive and dismissive of his son, preferring Adam as a surrogate son figure, forcing Danny to bring up all Mikes own horrific past sins inflicted upon him and Katie, causing both a violent fight between father and son and a terrible crisis of faith in the stone cold sober guru.

Adam meanwhile is now at a place where he can have a "committed relationship" in which to allow his mended sexuality to bloom. The ideal lady appears at a party in the form of health nut and breast cancer survivor Phoebe (Gwyneth Paltrow) but her off hand remark about never again dating an addict (she had previous with an alcoholic) forces him to hide his condition, until she discovers it. Although their relationship continues, mistrust starts to creep in and the two are forced apart, sending Adam on his own dark night of the sexual soul. When a former conquest, Becky (Emily Meade) offers to reignite things, a strange role play game reveals her own demons and almost ends in tragedy, forcing him to reassess his direction.

Neil meantime is in constant denial, not taking the program or Adam's mentorship seriously until one trick too far gets him fired from hospital. Forced to pull himself by the bootstraps for the first time, he finds solace, companionship and mutual support with another newbie, a female, Dede (Alecia Moore, aka rock star "Pink") whose sex addiction has wrecked countless lives including her own. The two form a strong, yet healthily platonic bond, and together turn the corner once and for all.

The film's tone is a strange one. It wants to play as a romantic comedy (and is marketed as such) with drama overtones, yet ends up appearing more like one of those stern moral warning movies that various leagues for decency-morality used to put out to warn the unsuspecting of their sinful ways and force them to repent before it is too late, the kind that have been parodied to death, or become cult items ("Reefer Madness" in particular). There is a strong strain of good old fashioned finger- wagging moralism running through it, that sexuality is not normal or healthy in itself (even if it sometimes produces pain or awkwardness) but only, as the film puts it, "is expressed in a healthy committed relationship". No one wears silver rings, but you feel they're somewhere in Mike's drawer. That would be fine if it didn't overpower the romance, comedy or drama, all of which are tainted by this pulpit moralism so that they no longer feel natural or living. This is especially true in Becky's case, where her sexy role play game cum mental breakdown is so utterly unrealistic and forced that it provokes laughter instead of the desired horror and shock.

Writer-director Stuart Blumberg handles the film well and it looks and flows very nicely, but it is the illustrious cast he has assembled that really save the film. Robbins gives it his all and manages to make his long dark of the soul believable, ably assisted by Richardson and Fugit. Gad is excellent, being both schlubby and sensitive, a loser and a winner, and is probably the best of the trio. He is well helped by Pink, who proves she has a good career ahead of her as an actress under her real name (as per rapper-singer turned actor rules!) and provides a depth and humanity lacking in many professionals. Ruffalo and Paltrow, excellent and always welcome actors, were clearly hired as an availability job-lot after "The Avengers" (it was made immediately afterwards in the same city) and seem to be playing much the same characters. Ruffalo is Banner-esque in quiet zen mode trying to keep a lid on the monster inside while Paltrow is in full Pepper Potts mode, sparky, spunky, wise cracking and condescending. It makes one dream of how a Banner-Potts relationship might blossom if Tony Stark were out of the picture for a while.

Rather like a free bowl of soup you get at a church meeting, it is an enjoyable enough morsel to warrant sitting through a fire and brimstone sermon, with great actors and decent direction, but bear in mind it won't be a conventional romantic comedy!
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Very good movie that deserves to be seen but not a comedy. A drama that leaves you with a feeling you can't describe.
Tony Heck5 January 2014
"It's like trying to quit crack while the pipe is attached to your body." Adam (Ruffalo), Mike (Robbins) and Neil (Gad) are all addicts that are trying to deal with their addictions. Things are going good for Adam until he meets a woman who finds out his secret. Mike encounters problems when his son returns home and Neil's life is crumbling around him because of his problem. This is billed as a romantic comedy but do not be fooled. I would not call this a comedy at all. The movie deals with very serious issues but the acting is the thing that really makes you feel for the characters. Very early on you start to root for everyone in the movie and you live their ups and downs with them. You almost find yourself talking to the screen and yelling NO at certain temptations that face them. This isn't really a movie I can describe you really should see this one to understand. Overall, a very good movie that deserves to be seen but do not expect a comedy. This is a straight drama that leaves you with a feeling you can't describe. I liked it. I give it a B+.
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A genuine crowd pleaser, despite it's delicate overtones.
Scott Gentry22 October 2013
Warning: Spoilers
"Thanks For Sharing" Director: Stuart Blumberg. Starring: Mark Ruffalo, Tim Robbins and Gwyneth Paltrow. Rated: 15, for containing strong sex, sex references and strong language. Running Time: 112 minutes. Out now in UK cinemas.

"Thanks For Sharing" follows a group of individuals, who are trying to overcome a natural urge, sex. As they attend an addicts group led by Mike (Tim Robbins), our story focuses on three central characters (Adam - Mark Ruffalo, Neil - Josh Gad and Dede - Alecia Moore), who begin to develop romances and friendships; through their mistakes and successes.

You've got to admit, selling a film about sex addiction to producers must be hard; however it seems director Stuart Blumberg (writer of the award winning film "The Kids Are All Right) has succeeded.

Films of this nature have begun cropping up in the last three years, the most memorable being Steve McQueen's "Shame", a dramatic and often shocking look at sex addiction through one man; Brandon (Michael Fassbender).

"Thanks For Sharing" (albeit tough and challenging material at times) doesn't live up fully to my expectations based upon films like "Shame". However, this doesn't matter.

This film may not be as emotionally wrenching as "Shame", but it doesn't need to be. It gets across a clear and delicate message, in which the most unlikely of audiences will be able to get their head around.

The film begins with a small but insightful invitation into the lives of our (very different) main characters. It's good that all characters come from different situations and backgrounds, as there may be people who have these problems and this film could be a way to help their addiction, but on a more relate-able level.

The aspect of sex addiction, is no joke. The film delivers a very real look into the character's lives, but always (barely) keeps inside the comedy/drama genre. At times the film is explicit, but it partly needs to be; as the film should delve properly into the addiction and not deliver a sugar-coated Hollywood comedy. Thankfully, it doesn't.

The main cast is superb. Mark Ruffallo delivers a perfect and believable performance, especially when the film develops dark overtones. Gwyneth Paltrow acts exceedingly well in a non-Pepper Pots ("Iron Man" reference) role which allows her to flourish into a seasoned actress. Alecia Moore (stage name, PINK) portrays a slightly underused, but likable character.


Honestly, "Thanks For Sharing" is a more accessible film than "Shame". still delivering the sharp dialogue and awkward situations under a lighter (sometimes dark) mood. A genuine crowd pleaser, despite it's delicate overtones.

7 Stars out of 10 = Excellent.

Written by Scott Gentry.
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Thanks for making
kosmasp20 March 2015
If you ever been to an addicts group, I reckon you all too well know the term "Thanks for sharing". And most of us (if not all of us), do have a tendency to drift into addiction. Some things are just too good to let go off. The movie has some very fine actors and many story lines that keep you excited and at the edge of your seat (if you get what the characters are about and feel for them, which I think the movie does a good job of putting us there).

It's best not to keep certain things secret and if it comes to addiction that is more than true. Obviously there are more than one sort of addiction and it's really good to see the characters interact in and around those addictions, but also family issues those will result in. There may be some flaws, but the movie has a heart and feels more than sincere in what it does
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Exploring taboo
absolutely-fabulous4712 November 2013
I took my friend along who happens to be Christian. I forewarned her of the film's nature but told her it wasn't merely a derogatory exploitation of hard core sexual intimacy, but tapping into an emotional and sometimes sensitive subject. It was beautifully shot, excellent soundtrack and well built character development that allowed you to easily become responsive towards the character's actions and feelings. Occasionally I felt the script to be a little sloppy but it definitely did not taint my overall feelings for the film. Furthermore, Pink played out her character with depth and depiction of female nymphomania. I genuinely experienced satisfaction for her when she choose to remain simply close friends with Neil (Josh Gad). Considering this was only Pink's second film role, I commend her efforts.
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