Synopsis: When uptight accountant Jordan Abrams (Jonas Chernick) proposes to Rachel (Sarah Manninen), whom he believes to be his soul mate, he gets rejected. Not only that, Rachel finally admits that he’s terrible in bed.
When Rachel, frustrated and deeply unsatisfied, dumps him, Jordan sets out to improve his sexual skills. His goal is to do whatever it takes to get Rachel back, and so he gets the advice of a stripper named Julia (Emily Hampshire), who introduces him to strip clubs, massage parlors, cross dressing and sadomaschocism.
eyelights: Dandak. its sex gags.
eyesores: its limited scope. its predictable ending.
“I can’t spend the rest of my life having sex with you!”
‘My Awkward Sexual Adventure’ is a Canadian sex comedy set in Winnipeg and Toronto. It tells the story of Jordan, a sad sack accountant who gets dumped by his girlfriend Rachel on the eve of a couple’s getaway abroad – where he had planned to propose. Rachel longs for a more fulfilling sex life and doesn’t feel she can spend the rest of her days left unsatisfied by him. She’s so fed up with his sexual ineptitude that there’s nothing he can do to change her mind.
Yet, in utter denial, Jordan waits for her at the airport, still hoping she’ll join him. She doesn’t. So he goes to Toronto to see an old friend, Dandak, a highly-successful playa, and asks for his advice. Dandak decides to throw a party for him so that he can meet women to hook up with. That goes predictably bad and Jordan winds up wandering the streets of Toronto and going to a strip club, getting drunk and then waking up in one of the dancers’ apartment.
Striking up a friendship with Julia, he explains his situation and asks her for some coaching to become a better lover – in exchange for some assistance balancing her books.
On the verge of bankruptcy, she agrees:
- Lesson 1 – Rub and Tug: In which Julia takes him to a massage parlour for a sensual massage and tells him to hold back as long as possible – to try to fight their techniques, which are designed to get him off quickly. He does, but it ends badly – in what is probably the biggest guffaw of the picture.
- Lesson 2 – Dirty Talk: As she gets him to peel shrimp with her for dinner (she’s a master chef who dreams of someday opening her own restaurant), she teaches him the basics of dirty talk.
- Lesson 3 – Confronting Issues: Julia dresses Jordan up in drag. Feeling surprisingly comfortable as a woman, he decides that he wants to go out that way. This lands him in hot water as his former rabbi recognizes him at a local Pride event and camera crews are filming it live.
- Lesson 4 – Being the Aggressor: Julia trains Jordan to be a dominant. She dresses him up in bondage gear, has him tie her up and using his pent up anger towards Rachel to get him to whip her.
- Lesson 5 – Cunnilingus for Beginners: Using fruit, Julia shows him the basics about going down on a woman. But then he suddenly catches on and she gets turned on – so she offers to serve as a guinea pig for him to practice on. Nice.
- Lesson 6 – Final Exam: He goes back to Rachel to try to win her back with his newfound skills
While all of this is happening, Rachel is having all sorts of sexual encounters with various men and women. But after seeing him on television during the Pride parade, she rushes to Toronto to make up with him. His new cunnilingual skills leaves her eager to marry Jordan and urgently sets up an engagement dinner with everyone they know. But he soon realizes that it doesn’t feel right and dumps her – during an awkward speech that he’s giving at the dinner.
Surprise, surprise: he goes back for Julia, and helps her set up her new restaurant.
If ‘My Awkward Sexual Adventure’ felt like it fell into that same kind of space as ‘American Pie’, but done on a Canadian budget, frankly I had hoped for another gem like ‘Young People Fucking‘. It wasn’t. It tried very hard to go make us laugh with outrageous sexual humour, attempted to tie in a romantic connection between our two leads, and sometimes tried to titillate, but it wasn’t enough to really reel me in; by the end, I was a bit disinterested.
There were a few good gags along the way, but the writing and performances just weren’t sharp enough for my taste; I didn’t believe just how clueless Jordan was (heck, even I’m not that bad!), his relationships felt unrealistic (why would he remotely want to be with Rachel, who’s a total dick, and what’s drawing Julia and him together, exactly?), and his unlikely transition from being the world lamest lover to a skillful attentive one seemed tenuous at best.
My favourite part of the picture, strangely enough, were all the moments with Dandak. First off, I liked that he was a short Indian guy because he’s not your stereotypical image of a metrosexual philanderer. Secondly, I enjoyed how he keeps his life a secret from his family, going on lame dates that they plan for him to get him married – only to find the one woman that can tie him down. And then discovering that she also leads a secret life. Talk about good karma!
But, otherwise, even though ‘My Awkward Sexual Adventure’ had come strongly recommended by someone I know, I was left a bit underwhelmed by it; it didn’t charm me and it didn’t make me laugh enough to overcome its many contrivances and moments of maladroitness. I mean, it’s entertaining enough for one viewing, but I’m not so sure that it’s inspired enough to warrant repeats. Let’s just say that I’d watch ‘Young People Fucking’ many times more before going back.
Date of viewing: April 17, 2016