Hello everyone, and welcome to 111 Archer Avenue. What started as a film review blog has become my online judgment forum. I will review the occasional movie or DVD, post an interesting trailer, critique a newly-read book, talk about sports, and share my thoughts and opinions on random issues. You can also follow me on Twitter (@OlieCoen) or check out my work on DVDTalk.com. Thank you and enjoy!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Movie Revew - Touchy Feely

Director: Lynn Shelton
Starring: Rosemarie DeWitt, Ellen Page, Josh Pais
Year: 2013

I chose the above picture on purpose to represent what you'll be seeing for the majority of the movie.  Not only should you expect a multitude of slow shots of Rosemarie DeWitt's face but also the faces of Elle Page, Josh Pais, Scoot McNairy, Allison Janney, Ron Livingston, none of which are especially breathtaking beauties.  Touchy Feely is a film about human interaction and the way the director goes about portraying this contact is by showing us skin, getting up close & personal with the actors, elongating scenes to show us all the minute wonder of each moment that we are alive.  Or at least, I think that was the point, because that's definitely not how it felt to watch the movie.  It was less like a magical journey through the intense world of sensation and more like a ninety minute struggle to stay awake.

Abby is a masseuse, her brother Paul is a dentist, and his daughter Jenny is his aid.  They all lead a quiet existence, all have trouble really connecting with others, and are all about to open up their hearts in a dangerous attempt to find happiness.  Jenny is trying to grow up & fall in love, Paul thinks he might be some kind of healer, and Abby wakes up one day with an odd aversion to human contact.  By helping each other they just might be able to find their collective way through this weird phase of life in which they individually can't come to terms with the decisions that they have made.  But it won't be easy and at times it will be painful, as they face the bitter truths of their lives and prepare to accept responsibility for their own futures.

Wow, even writing about this movie is putting me to sleep.  It was hard to watch, if only for the constant boredom and lack of anything substantially exciting.  I love when movies leave some depth unspoken, leaving me to figure a little out on my own.  But there's a difference between unspoken and not speaking.  Touchy Feely just didn't give me enough information, enough emotion, enough story.  The actors may have been trying their best, but no spark came across and at the end of the film I was left feeling like absolutely nothing had happened.  And it had a promising start; quirky characters, some solid acting, a weird plot.  If it had gone anywhere, given any sort of message, I would have been happy, but no, nothing.  It was a sensational experience that had no effect on any of my senses except my desire to go to bed.

My rating: ✰ ✰

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