Full Frontal

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -4

Alternating between sharp, clear scenes of a movie set and the grainy look of home video for the real world, Oscar winning director Steven Soderbergh compares the real world of Hollywood with the reel world in this study of interrelated characters within the industry. As he did in the multi-story lines of TRAFFIC, Soderbergh mixes camera styles as clues to which story is on-screen. Insecure Carl (David Hyde Pierce) and his partner Arty (Enrico Colantoni) wrote the screenplay of a new movie for famed producer Gus (David Duchovy). Francesca (Julia Roberts) and Calvin (Blair Underwood) play reporter Catherine and actor Nicholas, the romantic leads of the film within a film. But while his screen persona flirts with Catherine, Calvin has an affair with his neighbor Carls wife, Alice (Catherine Keener), a corporate human resource executive. Linda (Mary McCormick), Alices massage therapist sister, plans to spend a romantic weekend with a man she met on the Internet. Unknown to either, Arty is the Internet friend. While Arty debuts a stage play about Hitler with a vain actor (Nicky Katt), others are preparing to celebrate Guss 40th birthday. And Linda discovers after the fact, that her latest client is really Gus. Cameos by actors such as Brad Pitt liven the scenes, but FULL FRONTAL lacks the tense drama of Soderberghs TRAFFIC or ERIN BROCHOVICH. Filled with inside jokes, the FULL FRONTAL title teases audiences but lacks holding power.

Along with the suggestive title and obscenity-laden dialogue, numerous conversations are sexually suggestive. Although nothing specific is said, one conversation implies the gift of a sex toy. A client of Linda's is obviously aroused and offers money for a sexual favor. Initially declined, the offer and money is finally accepted, although Linda later heads straight to the bathroom in disgust. A graphic, although blurrily filmed, sexual encounter between Calvin and Alice is also shown. After their encounter, Calvin ends the relationship. And after a few drinks at the party, Alice throws a beachball at Calvin in anger. Carl finds their dog passed out after eating brownies. Having made the marijuana-laced brownies for the party, Alice returns home to find Carl and a female vet’s aide sharing the drugged treats. A man's dead body, apparently resulting from a deviate sexual experiment, briefly supplies the view suggested by the title. FULL FRONTAL reveals morally empty lives both on the screen and in the "real" life of the film industry.

Preview Reviewer: Paul Bicking
Miramax Films, 375 Greenwich St., New York, NY 10013

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: Several (7) times Mild 3, moderate 4

Obscene Language: Many (52) times F-word 44, s-word 7, other 1

Profanity: Many (26) times Regular (GD, C, J 7, G 5, G sake); exclamatory 11 (OG, OMG, MG)

Violence: Few times - Mild and moderate (plastic globe thrown at man, suicide found with bag on head)

Sex: Once (adulterous couple blurry scene of graphic motion w/ nudity, implied few times by man on bed with sleeping woman, manual stimulation implied once)

Nudity: Few times (dead body with male frontal, blurry female breast/rear in sex scene, nude pictures on porn video covers); Near Nudity few times (woman in underwear, man in underwear)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Many times (comments about sexual activity in film, discussion of pornography, game of pornographic actor name, discussion of planned weekend with Internet friend, woman seems to proposition man, mans arousal obvious, money offered for relief, discussion about sexual gift, woman visits porn shop, discussion of videotaping sex with wife)

Drugs: Comment about smoking implies marijuana use, dog and couple eat marijuana-laced brownies, alcoholic drinks at party, woman appears drunk

Other: Man at urinal/ sounds, theme of false reality in films

Running Time: 107 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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