A COMPLETE HISTORY OF MY SEXUAL FAILURES
Chris Waitt has recently been dumped by his last girlfriend and decides to make a film about his shortcomings as a boyfriend. He tracks down some of his old girlfriends hoping to get some clues.
Review by Louise Keller:
It's not as funny as the title suggests, but there's something endearing about this rough video diary in which filmmaker Chris Waitt takes a fly-on-the-wall approach to his past failures as a boyfriend. Teenage boys will no doubt be drawn to the film which is sometimes played for laughs but often offers raw insights and truthful moments. Holding his furry boom mike that resembles a feather duster on a stick, what we get when Waitt interviews past girlfriends is an honesty that's as prominent as the freckles on their faces. It's too long and the film's first half is a tad repetitive, but as Waitt tracks down girls from his past (who are mostly not interested in talking to him), we go on a tongue-in-cheek journey that touches on personal issues, sex and aspirations which fans of independent films will embrace.
Addressing the camera, Waitt introduces himself and explains his idea for the project. He is dishevelled with a mop of unruly hair that has not seen a brush and he wears the same ripped jeans through most of the film. It's a bit forced as he tries to describe how many ways he has been dumped (email, ansaphone, text, webcam), and the joke is slightly overdone when none of his ex-girlfriends want to talk to him. Finally he finds the one woman he knows will speak to him - his Mum. And that is good copy.
After the first 10 minutes, I wondered how Waitt could possibly stretch out his concept, but we do go along, fascinated by the people and where it might lead. All the conversations lead to the issue of sex and his sexual inadequacies. There's full frontal nudity and he gets a whipping from the S&M dominatrix, who has no concept of kid-glove handling. The Viagra overdose incident is mostly played for cheap laughs as he runs into the rainy night asking everyone in the world to have sex with him, and there's an amusing interview with an ex who agrees to an interview without being seen or heard (there's a blanket, a screen, and a computerised voice). I was however, surprisingly moved by the sincerity of an interview with a girl called Vicky and when Waitt's journey is finally over, we do feel some affection for at least some of the characters we have met along the way. It may not be the complete history we would like, but it's easy to feel some affection for Waitt and his project.
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A COMPLETE HISTORY OF MY SEXUAL FAILURES (R)
CAST: Documentary featuring Chris Waitt, Alexandra Boyarskaya, Danielle McLeod, Olivia Trench, Hilary Waitt
PRODUCER: Mary Burke, Robin Gutch, Mark Herbert, Henry Trotter
DIRECTOR: Chris Waitt
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Steven Mochrie
EDITOR: Mary Atkins, Chris Dickens
MUSIC: Chris Waitt
RUNNING TIME: 90 minutes
AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Madman
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: Sydney, Hobart, Brisbane: March 19; Melbourne: March 26, 2009