40 Days and 40 Nights Reviews
Josh Hartnett plays young Dot Commer, Matt, who is suffering since his break up 6 months ago from Nicole (a viciously good Vinessa Shaw). Matt has visions of a Black Hole fissuring from the ceiling whenever he is having sex with women which is very often-- poor guy. Matt confides in his brother, John (Adam Trese), a priest completing his probationary period. John is not the tower of strength and inspiration that Matt is looking for. Then by design, divine intervention, or sheer insanity, Matt chooses abstinence for 40 days and nights until Lent. And this is extreme-- no fondling and... no masturbation. No one believes Matt will last 40 days, much less a week. Among the faithless is Matt's roommate, Ryan (Paulo Costanzo), who betrays Matt confidence and tells his co-workers at Matt's Internet company. They start a pool on a website predicting Matt's demise. In the meantime, Matt pursues a relationship with a great girl, Erica (a beautiful Shannyn Sossamon), who he met at the local laundromat. Also by design it just happens that Erica has a history of dating weirdos, and she works for Cyber Nanny, a company that safeguards against porn-sites. Matt also finds out that Nicole is back from Europe and now engaged, and she will not let him forget this. What makes the movie special is that Matt really falls in love with Erica without sleeping with her, and that he remains abstinent, because he said so... This is refreshing. Josh Hartnett is great here. His Matt is a good-looking, charming guy who makes an insane choice and lives with it. Hartnett also comes across as empathetic, as a man thrust in an almost impossible situation where everyone is betting on his failure. He has a quiet strength about him, is very funny, and totally believable. Shannyn Sossamon is stunning-- you can see why Matt falls for her. And when she wonders if Matt is gay, this is hilarious. Sossamon's Erica is smart and compassionate with great humanity. Playing a woman wondering why the guy she is attracted to doesn't want to have sex with her is not an easy role... or natural.
The humor in "40 Days" is raw, though enjoy the ride. Afterall it is a romance, managed well by Lehman, Harnett, and Sossamon. And we don't mind being offended as long as it is done smartly with style, and that we are ultimately touched.
Nicole broke up with Matt months ago and is now engaged to someone else. He's very good-looking and has no trouble finding other lovers, but that doesn't help because he's still obsessed with wanting her back. Then he gets the inspiration that swearing off sex for Lent (all forms of sexual activity, even kissing or masturbation) will give him the perspective he needs. So of course a few days later he meets a woman and they fall in love. Now Matt sees his vow as a personal matter, and won't even tell her about it, but his friends think otherwise, and now the complications begin...
As irony would have it, he runs into an awesome girl Erica (Shannyn Sossamon) at the local Laundromat but Matt's vow of abstinence is posted on an Internet site by his co-workers who make a bet that he can't stay true to his promise and now there is a large pool of money gathering for which day Matt will break the vow. Some of the more interesting points are in his not being able to be intimate with Erica and the temptations of his female coworkers. (Look out for the copy-machine girl)
This movie is not for everyone, of course, if you're the type of person who's afraid his/her I.Q points will drop drastically when watching this, avoid avoid avoid! But for those who like wit mixed in with their humor, then this might be your cup of tea. Just sit back and enjoy the ride. I know I did.
This is a film fueled by likeable leads, and the most lively performances. 40 Days and 40 Nights is an adult romantic-comedy, that certianly has alot of adult themes. Yet, what is also has it brains. they took the comedy part, and equally equated the romance part into it to make this a really good film in which it isn't all lame sex-jokes, but also is romantic, and sweet, yet doesn't rely on all the romance filled nonsense that causes a tear-jerking feeling(or a vomit-inducing coma for all the guys who will be watching such a film).
So, I would consider this is really good film, and one I definately will remember for years to come. even if we lose our sense of humor, or compassion for the wonderful thing we call love.
True Rating : For me, let's just say, NC-17. Enough said.