Hysteria

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -4

Hugh Dancy, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jonathan Pryce. Comedy/drama. Directed by Tanya Wexler.

FILM SYNOPSIS: In the 1880s London’s bored housewives were suffering from all kinds of as yet undiagnosed aliments. But these illnesses were nothing more than mental frustrations brought on by sexual itches which had not been satisfyingly scratched. In other words, they were horny. Now, if that word offends you, then best not read further, for this film is about Dr. Mortimer Granville, the inventor of the ladies’ companion, the vibrator.

Young Dr. Granville was discouraged by the medical community of his day, a community that still used leeches and paid little warning to Lister’s germ theory. Searching for employment, he met an elderly physician whose practice consisted of treating women with hysteria, wild mood swings temporarily controlled by the doctor’s, eh, hands-on ministrations. Soon, Dr. Granville became the new and much appreciated apprentice. He was easy on the eyes for the ladies, and a quite handy associate until he developed a form of carpal tunnel syndrome. As the practice built, cramps diminished Dr. Granville’s magic touch.

Just when his future looked bleakest, a freak incident stirred his imagination. Aided by another inventor who had mastered the use of electricity, Granville built a portable stimulating machine. From then on, womenfolk could treat themselves, well, if they had electricity.

Oh yeah, and the good doctor gets engaged to his benefactor’s daughter, while falling in love with her more hysterical sister.

PREVIEW REVIEW: There’s actually very little crudity in the film. And the proper doctors practice their service with a completely clinical approach. There are, however, several scenes where we see middle-aged to elderly women from their Victorian dressed shoulders on up climaxing with all the exuberance of porn film actors.

Though well acted, with great production values and an involving storyline, I wouldn’t want to take my mom or a first date to a movie that features a doctor masturbating several women. Doesn’t anything embarrass today’s moviegoers?

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
Distributor:
Sony Pictures Classics

Summary
The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: A few suggestive or bawdy sexual comments.

Profanity: One misuse of Christ’s name

Violence: A woman gets pushed about; later she is seen with cuts and bruises on her face.

Sex: Several older women are seen from the shoulders up in sexual ecstasy

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: Wine with meals

Other: None

Running Time: 95 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults


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