sex, lies, and videotape
Time Out saysAnn (MacDowell) is not happy: her husband John (Gallagher) is a lawyer who, unbeknownst to her, is having an affair with her virtually estranged sister (San Giacomo). The deception only comes to light with the arrival of John's old friend Graham (Spader), a shy, impotent eccentric who gets his kicks from watching interviews he has taped with women about their sexual experiences... Soderbergh's first feature is impressively mature, less concerned with actions per se than with the gulf between deed and motivation, between what we feel and what we say we feel. Despite the title, there is almost no explicit nudity or sexual activity; by avoiding sensationalism, Soderbergh leaves himself free to focus unblinkingly on moral and psychological complexities. No character is entirely without dishonesty or hang-ups; all initially shrink from taking full responsibility for their actions. The actors are superb; working from Soderbergh's funny, perceptive, immaculately wrought dialogue, they ensure that the film stimulates both intellectually and emotionally.