40 Days and 40 Nights

Ah the joys of dating. Who can forget the insecurity, the
late nights, the dining out, the heartbreaks, and the lines people use just go try to get someone in bed? In the new comedy “40 Days and 40 Nights” viewers are introduced to Matt Sullivan (Josh Hartnett), a computer design worker who is recovering from a difficult breakup by sleeping with every lady he can find in San Francisco. This is not going very well as poor Matt believes that the ceiling is becoming a black hole and will consume him during his coitial bliss. While seeking advice from his priest in training brother Adam (John Sullivan), Matt decides to try giving up all forms of sex for 40 days and nights for Lent in an effort to rid himself of his issues and his pining for his ex of six months. At first it all is well for Matt as he finds projects to keep himself distracted. Fate soon steps in with a chance encounter at a laundry mat where Matt encounters Erica (Shannyn Sossamon), who is in many ways his ideal woman. Matt and Erica begin to date, but Matt is abstaining from all forms of contact including kisses, hand holding, and hugs, and faces the issue of showing Erica he is crazy about her without breaking his vow. Why doesn’t he just tell her about his vow? Well our hero has decided that doing so might make him seem a sex fiend to the lady of his dreams so he decides to avoid the topic no matter how hard things get. Compounding the issue are Matt’s co-workers who try to seduce him, or tempt him to fail in order to win an Internet pool on just how long he can last. With the pot growing near $18,000 there is plenty of motivation for people to make Matt fail in his quest.
The film is a funny and often ribald look at the sexes and how they view dating, sex, and communication. While the film drags in spots, Hartnett is very good in his role and the audience can clearly feel his pain and suffering as he attempts to complete his vow. Sossamon is good in a restrained manner that sets her apart from the standard film girlfriend. She is kind and caring, but never unrealistic in her affection for Matt despite the odd situation they are in. The film’s content and nudity may be a bit much for some, but if you want to get some good laughs and see a novel twist on the war of the sexes, than this film may be just what you are looking for.

3.5 stars out of 5