Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Watch: Spoiler-ific Local News Report On 'Batman v. Superman' That Caused WB To Lauch A Lawsuit Watch: Spoiler-ific Local News Report On 'Batman v. Superman' That Caused WB To Lauch A Lawsuit Christopher Nolan Says 'Interstellar' Is About "What It Means To Be A Dad”; Plus Check Out New Pics Christopher Nolan Says 'Interstellar' Is About "What It Means To Be A Dad”; Plus Check Out New Pics Paul Schrader, Nicolas Winding Refn & Nicolas Cage Campaign Against Their Film 'Dying Of The Light' Paul Schrader, Nicolas Winding Refn & Nicolas Cage Campaign Against Their Film 'Dying Of The Light' WTF: Horror Hit 'Annabelle' Yanked From French Theaters Due To Rioting WTF: Horror Hit 'Annabelle' Yanked From French Theaters Due To Rioting Retrospective: The Films Of Paul Thomas Anderson Retrospective: The Films Of Paul Thomas Anderson WB Reveals Full DC Slate Through 2020, Including Two 'Justice League' Pics, 'Wonder Woman,' 'Green Lantern' & More WB Reveals Full DC Slate Through 2020, Including Two 'Justice League' Pics, 'Wonder Woman,' 'Green Lantern' & More Brad Bird Explains Why He Passed On Directing 'Star Wars: Episode 7' Brad Bird Explains Why He Passed On Directing 'Star Wars: Episode 7' Shia LaBeouf Cut His Own Face, Fought The Cast & Got A Tooth Pulled Making 'Fury' Shia LaBeouf Cut His Own Face, Fought The Cast & Got A Tooth Pulled Making 'Fury' Robert Downey Jr. To Join Chris Evans In ‘Captain America 3’ Which Will Help Launch A New Phase Of Marvel Robert Downey Jr. To Join Chris Evans In ‘Captain America 3’ Which Will Help Launch A New Phase Of Marvel BFI London Film Festival Review: Susanne Bier's Long-Delayed 'Serena' Starring Jennifer Lawrence & Bradley Cooper BFI London Film Festival Review: Susanne Bier's Long-Delayed 'Serena' Starring Jennifer Lawrence & Bradley Cooper Oscar Buzz: Who's Going To Challenge For Best Actress This Year? Oscar Buzz: Who's Going To Challenge For Best Actress This Year? Robert Downey Jr. Says Superhero Films Are Becoming “Old" And Showing "Signs Of Fraying Around The Edges” Robert Downey Jr. Says Superhero Films Are Becoming “Old" And Showing "Signs Of Fraying Around The Edges” Recap: 'Boardwalk Empire' Season 5, Episode 6 ‘Devil You Know’ Recap: 'Boardwalk Empire' Season 5, Episode 6 ‘Devil You Know’ Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

Watch: Martin Freeman Debases Self, Career In ‘Swinging with the Finkels’ Trailer

The Playlist By Sam Price | The Playlist August 9, 2011 at 1:41AM

Though it’s the birthplace of Alfred Hitchcock and David Lean, and boasts masters such as Mike Leigh and Ken Loach still working at the top of their game, there’s also a rich tradition in British cinema of what one could politely call the “sex comedy”. It began with the light smattering of smut provided by the “Confessions...” series of the 1970s and evolved into the slap-and-tickle blarney of the “Carry On…” movies. In the 2000s, we thought it’d reached the summit of what the fetid sub-genre could achieve with the risible “Sex Lives of the Potato Men,” “Lesbian Vampire Killers, ” and “Three And Out”. But now we have Jonathan Newman’s “Swinging With the Finkels,” the trailer for which promises the less-than-edifying spectacle of Jerry Stiller getting hit in the crotch with a vibrator.
3


Though it’s the birthplace of Alfred Hitchcock and David Lean, and boasts masters such as Mike Leigh and Ken Loach still working at the top of their game, there’s also a rich tradition in British cinema of what one could politely call the “sex comedy”. It began with the light smattering of smut provided by the “Confessions...” series of the 1970s and evolved into the slap-and-tickle blarney of the “Carry On…” movies. In the 2000s, we thought it’d reached the summit of what the fetid sub-genre could achieve with the risible “Sex Lives of the Potato Men,” “Lesbian Vampire Killers, ” and “Three And Out”. But now we have Jonathan Newman’s “Swinging With the Finkels,” the trailer for which promises the less-than-edifying spectacle of Jerry Stiller getting hit in the crotch with a vibrator.

For those interested, the film is about a frustrated middle-class couple who hilariously decide to go "swinging" with another couple to spice up their love life – a conceit that would have seemed dated in 1969, let alone 2011.

Lead Martin Freeman, a talented actor and a decent chap in his own right, has taken some of these paycheck gigs before in the fallow years between his breakthrough in the original version of “The Office” and his recent success in BBC’s “Sherlock” -- take for example his turn in “The All Together” alongside the hysterically untalented "tough man" Danny Dyer – but we thought he might have progressed beyond this pap. Presumably it’s Freeman’s increased visibility in recent months that has led to this being released Stateside at all, as well as the incongruous presence of Mandy Moore and Melissa George, presumably there to "internationalize" the film in the way Carmen Electra was supposed to for shocking Britcom “I Want Candy,” or Harry Dean Stanton for supposed chucklefest “Alien Autopsy.” Whatever the case, it’s an embarrassment for all concerned, and something that should give pause to anyone who liberally chucks around phrases like "The British are coming."

You might think that people in charge of financing these films would realise that U.K. and international audiences have had their fill of this sort of thing but, alas, the next British sex comedies to rear their ugly heads are “The Inbetweeners” and – even more bizzarely – “Run For Your Wife,” a sex farce featuring – who else? – Danny Dyer as a taxi-driving bigamist who enlists the help of Sir Cliff Richard, walking self-parody and British pantomime "star" Christopher Biggins and Australian wobble board player Rolf Harris to ameliorate his marital woes. The horror.

“Swinging with the Finkels,” which was ignored by audiences and summarily eviscerated by critics in its native U.K. is for whatever reason released in the U.S. on August 26th.

This article is related to: Films, Actors, Swinging With the Finkels, Martin Freeman


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates