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Scenes of a Sexual Nature

There comes a moment in every day when the conversation is about one thing. 

Year: 2006 
Running Time:
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 (Scope) 
Certificate: BBFC 15 Cert – Not suitable for under 15s 
Subtitles: The level of subtitling in this film is unknown to WSC 
Directed by Unknown 
Starring: Unknown  
An image from Scenes of a Sexual Nature

Director: Ed Blum

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Sophie Okonedo, Andrew Lincoln, Gina McKee

Scenes of a Sexual Nature is classic modern British cinema: shot on a budget a fraction of the size Hollywood can provide, not afraid to tread new ground and starring dozens of British faces we recognise from TV and film. Taking place over the course of one afternoon on Hampstead Heath in London, the film tracks seven couples and explores human relationships and our attitudes to sex in general. The title is misleading in so far as it may suggest pornography to some, but it is much more about talking and discussion, an engaging challenge to an open minded audience.

Although Scenes of a Sexual Nature has a star-studded cast, it is the writing that is the real underlying attraction and is what makes the film entertaining and engrossing. Characters discuss topics we all will have thought about but in the film are infused with a new spin that provokes thought and discussion away from the cinema. Similarly there are events that will strike a chord of familiarity with everyone, such as when Jamie (Lincoln, playing up to the same humorous form established in This Life and Teachers) is caught by his wife Molly (Holly Aird) spying on another woman in the park (played by the gorgeous Eglantine Rembauville-Nicolle) and is taken over to her to admit to it. With seven couples the film never gets dry as focus is shifted between them enough to retain interest and change discussion themes; not to mention the hopping from one excellent performance to another. Particularly worthy of note is Ewan McGregor who plays a homosexual enjoying the afternoon with his partner, with whom he discusses adopting children and the merits of two fathers versus a father and a mother. It is an amusing part of the film but also incites thought as to how such families could be different or better than the traditional set up.

Overall, Scenes of a Sexual Nature is a unique and very British film that shows what value lies in lower budget, shorter and more writing-oriented cinema. It is well worth seeing for both the on screen conversations between characters and the off screen ones it will spark amongst friends after leaving the cinema.

James Miles

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Screenings of this film:

2006/2007 Spring Term (35mm)