Thanks for Sharing *1/2 (out of five)

Thanks_for_Sharing_PosterSex addiction is not funny, I guess, if Thanks for Sharing, a grossly misjudged misfire of a movie, is anything to go by. Wildly inconsistent in tone, it is impossible to know whether the film aspires to comedy; it’s certainly not funny, but I think it’s trying to be, when it’s not trying to shock us into submission: okay, we get it, it’s a disease, we should feel sorry for these people!

The ensemble structure focuses on three men in group therapy for sex addiction. Mike (Tim Robbins) is the sponsor of Adam (Mark Ruffalo), who, in turn, sponsors the less committed Neil (Josh Gad). Each has problems relating to their addiction: Mike is dealing with his recovering son, Adam is dealing with a new relationship with Phoebe (Gweneth Paltrow); and Neil is just… dealing.

It’s astonishing that actors of this calibre signed on to a script of this banality; Edward Norton is an executive producer: is this his revenge on Rufflo for stealing The Hulk?

You're a sex addict? Then you'll love this...
You’re a sex addict? Then you’ll love this…

Scenes of supposed hilarity (fat guy rides bike, gets sweaty anus stain examined by mother, played by Carol Kane, no less!) buck up against Ruffalo having a “relapse” that is like a Funny Or Die parody of Shame, the movie about sex addiction that is actually worth seeing. Paltrow gives the year’s worst performance in an atrociously written role. (Example: having learned that her new boyfriend is a sex addict, and therefore needs to “take it slow”, she dresses up in lingerie and gives him a lap dance.)

At nearly two hours, this is an overdrawn, over lit, over acted movie and I was over it by the half hour mark. To his credit, Robbins turns in a surprisingly good performance, and Pink, in her first movie role, is excellent. Everything else is cringe-worthy.

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