"Based on a true story. A happily married mother (Lisa Rinna) seems to have the perfect life. Her world is shattered when she discovers that her husband (Harry Hamlin) is a sex addict."
That little caption is from Lifetime.com my mind is BLOWN. I am currently reading the comments and everyone is saying things like "this is the best lifetime movie EVER" and asking when it will air again??
Okay, listen ladies, it will air again at my house whenever (I recorded it on DVR) and you can come over and watch it. During this time I will tell it to you like it is.
This is a cautionary tale not a fairy tale!!!
This is a Lifetime title with promise. In the early 90's, this title alone could have pushed the movie forth to be with other Lifetime classics (i.e Mother May I sleep With Danger?) but alas, it is 2009 and Sex, Lies &Obsession, which originally aired in 2001 is making it's second round.
SLO chronicles the life of a loving husband and father of two, Cameron. There is just one thing you see, a small catch. Cameron cannot keep it in his pants.
During the first thirty minutes we see him:
1)wake up in the bed one of his missstressses
2)look at porn
3)while Cameron is waiting at the airport to go on a "business trip" to see a Lady Friend in Pittsburgh, he catches the attention of a flight attendant (then they do it)
4) arriving at his hotel he figures he should kill some time before banging his Lady Friend so he asks the concierge "I have never been to Pittsburgh-- what are the areas of town I should arrive?"
as the man behind the counter tells him the streets to avoid, Cameron scribbles them down on hotel stationary and is out the rotating gold doors, hopping in a cab and giving the address
5)upon arriving in the bad part of town we see a lot of trash cans on fire and then a decrepit building with a flashing sign "MASSAGE" Cameron enters for some rub &tug
He returns with a gift for his beautiful wife, who has just found out she has been awarded "Teacher of the Year" lately Lisa has become a little suspicious of Cameron. Why all of these business trips? Where is he going?
Well, Joanna, today is Judgment Day
Cameron forgets his brief case, so Joanna drives to the hospital to deliver it to him like the doting wife she is.
BUT when she pulls up to the hospital....Cameron is driving away. How could this be when he had a surgery scheduled? Joanna follows him figuring he is probably going to Subway for a tasty foot long. To her shock and horror he pulls into a shady apartment complex and begins to make out with a blond woman.
Horrified, she goes home and waits. When Cameron finally returns Joanna makes a very un-lifetime move and kicks Cameron out of the house!!!!!!
Will he ever be let back in?
I'll let you know in Part 2
the answer is: yes
What does cameron do when he gets home???
Has phone sex.
What does Cameron do when his son walks in??
makes him promise not to tell
When does Cameron finally get caught?
Well, a lot happens. Cameron drives to "the bad part" of town to pick up a prostitute. She is approximately sixteen years old &normally only sells The Dope but today she will make an exception. She leads Dr.Cameron down into a basement, he begins to unzip his pants, she is standing next to a table shaking &says "hold on a minute, I need to do something real quick." After she smoked crack, they "make love" and he hands her twenty-dollars. Twenty dollars, now that is a steal my friends.
He also gets beat up by her pimp &tells loving wife Joanna that the bruises are from the boxing gym.
But not soon after this is Cameron cruising the streets lookin' for some hookin' when he is arrested by an undercover cop posed as a lady of the night.
Who does he call to get him out? Joanna.
When she arrives at the station, the women behind the desk tells her he is in for SOLICITATION OF A PROSTITUTE dun da dun dun da dun dun da dun!!!!
Joanna is told "that's what all of these women are here for" she then sits down with a group of wives who are joking around about their silly husbands getting busted again. "I just hope they don't run their names in the paper tomorrow," one exclaims, as if her football team lost and she doesn't want anyone to know.
When Joanna is ushered back Cameron informs her that he didn't do anything wrong and asks for a ride home. Joanna (unlike Lifetime) does not forgive him and instead leaves us with this brilliant quote:
"you don't have a home......at least not with me you don't"
Ohhhh....burn...what will you do Cameron?
Well now shit gets crazy so let me just summarize. Joanna finds out that the apartment she drove to when she discovered the affair was in fact not the blond haired woman's but Cameron's own place! It is stocked with porn and playboy and plenty of condoms (aw, keepin it safe) sadly there is no sex swing. It seems that this is where Cameron brings back his lady friends (aka hookers). Joanna, cotarded, lies on the bed until Cameron walks in. Porn is playing in the background, and in a sense he seems sincerely sorry.
This is when Joanna disappoints me. She 1)does not kill him and 2) agrees to help him through couples counsling
While waiting to get an AIDs test a young girl in the waiting room tells Joanna she thinks her boyfriend is a "sex addict" Joanna who has apparently never heard the term stops and pauses "sex addict?" Could Cameron needing to get his tip wet at all times really just be an imbalance of the brain?
She decides "of course"
During couples counsling Cameron acts like a five year old and refuses to answer questions, leaving in his car and pouting. Cameron wont talk about his father and I was realllly hoping there'd be some great traumatic story but when the truth is revealed three sessions later all we learn is that Cameron's father too had affairs!
Now it all comes full circle, Joanna pities him and he agrees to take polygraph tests, admitting that he has had hundreds of lovers over the years but still loved her the most!!!
Joanna, you were always first wife. They live happily ever after
SO even if this is a true story like it claims to be this does not mean this is what anyone should do!! The trauma this causes their children and the example this sets about cheating be okay as long as we slap the term "sex addiction" on it seems complete insane to me.
Lifetime, you blew my mind. How is this possible? It was you Lifetime Television for Women that taught me not to blink an eye, to know a rapist when I saw him (every man I've ever met), to look for the money under the mattress, to find the poetry in throwing up) ohhhh LIfetime!! How could you???
Sex, Lies, & Obsession
I watched Sex, Lies, & Obsession last night. It starred Harry Hamlin & Lisa Rinna who are husband and wife in real life. They portrayed their characters well though Lisa's bad collagen job on her lips (not trying to be mean here. I am sure she is a good and lovely woman. I just don't see where she needed the bigger upper lip) was somewhat distracting.
The movie accurately portrays the life of a sex addict. Harry Hamlin plays Dr. Cameron Thomas, a man lost in his (seemingly) uncontrollable urge for sex. He has multiple partners come to his secret apartment. He visits peep shows, strip bars, watches porn on screen, print and internet and attempts to hide his secret life by constantly lying. He also puts on the facade of good husband and father though his wife can feel the distance.
The movie does an excellent job of capturing the sex addiction in the dialog. I don't know if it was great filmmaking but the essence of sex addiction was revealed. I am guessing it would have been a bit teachy for an academy film but, hey, films have many different purposes and this one accomplished its goal of showing the underlying factors and truths about sex addiction through story.
SEX ADDICTION IS NOT ABOUT SEX. It's a chosen means to fill a gaping emotional and spiritual void. This comes through loud and clear. In this movie one of the contributing factors was a young Cameron being confidant and secret keeper with regards to his father's constant infidelity.
The film showed an accurate depiction of the recovery process. Pardon my lack of verbs here. The lying. The lack of control. The unwillingness to admit a problem. Claiming a high sex drive. The continuation of the minimization, denial, justification and rationalization. Hitting bottom. Admitting a problem. Still dealing with minimization, rationalization, and justification. Resistance to feeling deeply. Not wanting to be labeled a sex addict. Sees that as a freak or pervert. Getting in a community where real honesty and questioning can begin. A total commitment to honesty with everyone especially his wife. Real emotional, spiritual and physical intimacy begins to take place. All this in a 3 steps forward, 2 steps back process. Those are the high points anyway.
The film showed an excellent picture of a 12-step recovery group. It really can be a supportive place where believed lies can be debunked and truths then owned. It can be a place where a friend comes when one is battling temptation on a street corner filled with prostitutes. It's a place where one can finally be real and will be called on his bullshit when it comes out of his mouth. It's a place one can be accepted in his or her struggle.
One final excellent point the movie made. The sex addict loves his wife. Even when he was with all the other women he still loved his wife. This wasn't about her. It was about his aching, gaping black void in his soul and finding temporary relief through sex. He didn't ever quit loving her.
Caveat, there are two brief displays of nudity when Cameron hits his bottom. This wouldn't be appropriate for a recovering sex addict in the early stages of his recovery to view. I think they could have been left out but I didn't make the movie.
I think this movie can be helpful for therapists, wives of sex addicts, friends of sex addicts and anyone who believes that sex addiction is about sex.
(P.S-- I had my man friend sit through this movie with me and at one point he asked of Lisa Rinna in horror 'what is wrong with her lips?' I told him I was pretty sure she'd had work done. Upon further research of course she has. And um, Oh my god, she is only 45? and this movie came out 8 years ago? so that would have made her 37???
The moral of the story don't get too much Botox or your husband will fuck the neighborhood)