Pretentious Bad Acting Class
Release Date: October 19, 2001
Starring: Mark Rylance, Kerry Fox,
Timothy Spall, Alastair
Galbraith, Philippe Calvario,
Marianne Faithful, & Susannah
Rating: Not Rated
Runtime: 119 minutes
Distributor: Empire Pictures
Director: Patrice Chéreau
Producer: Patrick Cassavetti, Charles
Gassot & Jacques Hinstin
Writer: Patrice Chéreau, Hanif
Kureishi & Anne-Louise
Address Comments To:Michael Birnbaum, President
Empire Pictures Inc.
12400 Wilshire Blvd Ste 1200
Los Angeles, CA 90025
INTIMACY reminds me of the worst parts of the Lee Strasberg Theater Institute, which, by the way, produced some great actors. It starts off with a very X-rated sex scene. The two characters in the basement of the London flat are nameless. They have sex without much intimacy and go their separate ways.
Eventually, the movie reveals that the man, Jay, is a bartender. Jay once had a family with two precious children. His wife asked him if he loved his children, but he was too self-absorbed to love anybody. Now, Jay tends bar at a high class bar.
Jay follows his liaison one day after their trist, and it turns out that she is a small-time actress in a cubby hole theater beneath a pub. The story reveals that the woman, Claire, has a husband and a son. Claire visits Jay once a week on Wednesdays to fornicate. Jay is shattered. He thought there may have been something about himself that was worthy loving, rather than just using for sex. Eventually, he confronts Claire. Then, her husband confronts her, and the acting class goes on and on.
In spite of the vivid sex scenes, there’s not much passion in this movie. Instead of involving the audience, it is more of a mediocre attempt to play some scenes by a group of people who are trying to copy Lee Strasberg’s famous technique. Like Strasberg, they have no concern for the spiritual side of life. They are into the body and body language. It is an exercise in adultery which seems vain and futile.
Needless to say, these people need Jesus Christ. I was just on the set of another movie being directed by a Christian, called GODS AND GENERALS, a movie about the Civil War being released next year. One of the secular reporters mentioned that the most powerful, romantic scene he’s ever seen was the prayer between Stonewall Jackson and his wife. Now, there’s a concept. Real intimacy. Even a secular reporter could recognize that this prayer was touching something much deeper than mere body language.
In spite of the vivid sex scenes, there’s not much passion in INTIMACY. Instead of involving the audience, it is more of a mediocre attempt to play some scenes by a group of people trying to copy Lee Strasberg’s famous Method Acting technique. Like Strasberg, they have no concern for the spiritual side of life. Instead, they are into the body and body language. Needless to say, these people need Jesus Christ.