Amy's O (Amy's Orgasm) (Why Love Doesn't Work) (2002) - Rotten Tomatoes

Amy's O (Amy's Orgasm) (Why Love Doesn't Work) (2002)



Critic Consensus: The title character is too self-absorbed to be all that engaging, and the movie's depiction of gender issues seems retrograde.

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Movie Info

A woman who gives advice on relationships for a living is trying to make sense of her own problems with the opposite sex in this independent romantic comedy. Amy (Julie Davis) is a single woman in her mid-twenties who has recently published a self-help book called Why Love Doesn't Work , in which she discusses why a woman doesn't need a husband or a boyfriend to feel fulfilled. But Amy isn't so sure she believes her own advice, and after four years without a steady relationship, she wants a man in her life. Feeling conflicted, Amy isn't sure where to turn or with whom she can discuss her relationship issues; she ends up sharing her problems with a priest (Jeff Cesario) who mans the confessional at a nearby Catholic church, even though Amy is Jewish. As Amy's book hits the stores, Janet (Caroline Aaron), a friend who works as a publicist for her publisher, snags Amy an appearance on a radio show hosted by Matthew Starr (Nick Chinlund), a popular but foul-mouthed "shock jock." Matthew is exactly the sort of man Amy warns her readers to stay away from, so she isn't sure why she finds herself attracted to him -- or why he seems to be interested in her. Amy's Orgasm was written and directed by Julie Davis, who also stars as Amy; the film was enthusiastically received in its screening at the 2001 Santa Barbara Film Festival.
R (strong sexual content including dialogue, and for language)
Comedy , Drama , Romance
Directed By:
In Theaters:


Julie Davis
as Amy Mandell
Nick Chinlund
as Matthew Starr
Caroline Aaron
as Janet Gaines
Jeff Cesario
as Priest
Charles Cioffi
as Amy's Dad
Tina Lifford
as Irene Barris
Michael Harris
as Jerry Hegeman
Mark Brown
as Mike
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Amy's O (Amy's Orgasm) (Why Love Doesn't Work)

All Critics (30) | Top Critics (10)

Davis' candid, archly funny and deeply authentic take on intimate relationships comes to fruition in her sophomore effort.

Full Review… | January 31, 2003
Top Critic

Despite its many infuriating flaws -- not the least of which is Amy's self-absorbed personality -- Amy's O's honesty will win you over.

January 31, 2003
Miami Herald
Top Critic

When compared to the usual, more somber festival entries, Davis' highly personal brand of romantic comedy is a tart, smart breath of fresh air that stands out from the pack even if the picture itself is somewhat problematic.

January 2, 2003
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

The whole mess boils down to a transparently hypocritical work that feels as though it's trying to set the women's liberation movement back 20 years.

Full Review… | October 4, 2002
Boston Globe
Top Critic

About Amy's cuteness, Amy's career success (she's a best-selling writer of self-help books who can't help herself), and Amy's neuroses when it comes to men.

Full Review… | September 27, 2002
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

Like Kissing Jessica Stein, Amy's Orgasm has a key strength in its willingness to explore its principal characters with honesty, insight and humor.

August 29, 2002
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Amy's O (Amy's Orgasm) (Why Love Doesn't Work)


This movie was hilarious in an inappropriate kind of way. It wasn't super raunchy, but it was definitely more graphic than your average romantic comedy.

Heather Metzger
Heather Metzger

I once remember a friend of a family friend was once criticized for talking only about things he himself knew, which somehow made this guy "self involved." But really, aren't the only things we talk about things that we know, think we know, or identify with? If you can accept this, it's very easy to get past the very narrow narrative spun by director Julie Davis, who paints an unflatteringly narcissistic neo-feminist (who she also plays in the film) as redeeming only in that she realizes that her philosophy about love is pure crap -- while other characters really eat it up. While, yes, the film can at times be predictable it earns extra points for showing the protagonist as a fatally flawed character (which no doubt involved a lot of self discipline on the part of director/writer/star Davis) as well as for its portrayal of the new feminism as sensationalist, media-powered drivel (Who would have ever guessed that Julie Davis had such [testicles]?).

David Wolf
David Wolf

AKA: Amy?s Orgasm. Generally decent romantic comedy/drama. Nicely written, but it lacks a truly likeable central character, and that does hurt the overall effect of the film. The production is competent.

James Higgins
James Higgins

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