Saturday, October 31, 2009


God's Gift to Women

The one scene that will strike you and linger around after you walked out of the cinemas, it's the final scene. It's no spoiler, but it walked right out of National Geographic, where you see up close, how a toad devours a mouse. Swallow in fact, allowing it to semi-digest, while occasionally tugging at the tail. It's downright gross as a parting short, but the camera stayed firmly on it for minutes during the entire end credits.

Anyway, back to the film. If you're blessed with good looks and a fine bod, I suppose sometimes you wonder if you're God's gift to women. For Ashton Kutcher's Nikki, his is a life of a classic dreamer, thinking that with his kind of aesthetics, he could be living the life straight out of a Van Halen music video, with flashy cars, plenty of cash and fast women to spend the rest of his days with. Unfortunately with no life skills to offer except the ability to pleasure women, he exploits his talent in order to live up to that impossible dream.

It's pretty much an instructional video on the tactics used by contemporary gigolos, or at least those who are looking to live off rich sugar mommies. Like a hunter preying on his mark, Nikki's not looking out for hot young things to feed his lifestyle, that will come later after he's snagged the anchor, who is that successful, single middle aged lady to hook up with, leading him to Anne Heche's Samantha (who looks really hot in the film, mind you).

Inventor of the rollover sleeping smile, they form a symbiotic relationship, one needing a toy boy for those lonely nights, while the other needing her extravagant Peter Bogdanovich's ex-mansion, sturdy Mercedes which needless to say, comes in extremely useful for parties and hosting of other nubile women to sucker when the cat's away. The premise of living the life at another's expense, using a bodily trade off, reminded me of the French film Priceless (Hors De Prix) starring Audrey Tautou, who plays the gold-digger in that film.

There's plenty of gratuitous nudity and sex to go around until the second half of the film which switched gears and turned out hunter into the prey, when he meets up with waitress Heather (Margarita Levieva) who's actually more of a player than he is, and it's like a match made in heaven in a karmic round-robin, with what's going around coming around. It is this aspect of the film that somewhat sagged that incredible, dream like freeloading taking place in the first half, and somehow turned this into sappy romance territory with its message on the consequence of non-permanence in relationships that will come back and haunt you.

Ashton Kutcher looked incredibly comfortable as the serial womanizer and slacker in life, clueless about what to do when he meets with the real woman of his desire. He gives Nikki that smugness and comfort in knowing that he's living the moment, with that natural despair coming in when he understands that he's now down the slippery slope of no return. I think he gets it down to a pat in real and reel life romancing older women. Anne Heche pretty much owned the supporting role in the first act, before disappearing for Margarita Levieva to take over the female lead in the second act, as the two women to have made the most impact in Nikki's life.

I could come up with something naughty to say about its title as the parting shot, but I'll leave it at that. Spread isn't top class material with its profound sleaze, but at least it had that memorable ending shot enough to make you reel a little, and talk about it. Strictly for those interested in what the R21 fuss is all about, and surprisingly, a lot more females in the audience than there are men.

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