Spanking the Monkey (1994)

Directed by: David O. Russell

Actors: Jeremy Davies, Alberta Watson, Elizabeth Newett, Benjamin Hendrickson

Language: English

Country: USA

Also known as: Secretos íntimos

Description: Raymond Aibelli is a promising medical student ready to begin a prestigious summer internship. But Susan, his mother, is immobilized by a broken leg, and his father Tom, a travelling salesman, makes Raymond stay home and take care of his mother, an attractive though unhappy woman. His mother’s condition leads them to a degree of immediate physical contact which Raymond finds disturbing. He soon meets Toni, a high school girl, but his sexual impulses are increasingly confused, especially since he is still upset over losing the internship.

Review: bold and daring comedy ‘Spanking the Monkey’ is one of the most unique, and in many ways, one of the most wickedly funny movies I’ve seen in a long time. It is a dark comedy, but even within those parameters, the movie is dashingly original. It dives into the uncomfortable topics of masturbation and incest, and makes no excuses. It is excellently written and directed by David O. Russel, who has just now made it big with “Three Kings.” Russel knows just the right key to hit with this film. The film, on the surface, is serious. Yet, in some subtle and not-so-subtle ways, he makes us laugh, a lot. Some of the greatest movies are ones that are uncomfortable to watch. The nature of the story makes this film uncomfortable to watch. But that’s good. It means what you’re seeing is something unique and provocative. This movie is definitely worth checking out.

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