Sex, Lies and Videotape (1989)

Sex, Lies and Videotape (1989)

A Story by Doug Ordunio

Steven Soderbergh's first classic film


Directed by Steven Soderbergh


This is Soderbergh’s major splash into cinema.  It won the Palme d’Or at the 1989 Cannes Festival, and it changed the method of film-making forever.


The plot is simple.  It begins with Ann (Andie MacDowell) at a therapy session discussing her unhappy marriage. During this, we watch a young man, Graham (James Spader) arriving in Baton Rouge and changing his shirt in the bathroom of a gas station.   Then we see John (Peter Gallagher) in his office talking on the phone about how wonderful marriage is. Then he prepares to leave work early. He drives to the home of Cynthia (Laura San Giacomo [in her film debut]) where they have an afternoon session of love. Then we find out that Ann is married to John. She is Ann’s sister.


Graham is an old college friend of John’s and has come to visit. Graham is impotent and he gets off on conducting one on one videotaped interviews with women about their sexuality. Cynthia is a bartender who is a good deal more uninhibited than her sister. After Ann helped Graham look for a place to live, she visits him and sees the tapes in boxes. She is shocked and when he tells her sister, Cynthia becomes curious. Cynthia visits him, and makes a tape. She tells Ann, who is bothered by her revelation. John’s philandering comes b

back to bite him.


The film is an acknowledged classic. The music by Cliff Martinez is haunting.

© 2011 Doug Ordunio

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Added on October 27, 2011
Last Updated on October 27, 2011


Doug Ordunio
Doug Ordunio

Tujunga, CA

I have been writing for a little while-- Please read and you might be entertained. Please don't send me tons of read requests. If you must send one, make sure it's your best stuff. From me, you will.. more..