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||IMDB Rating: 5.3/10 from R votes
||Release: 1 July 2014 (Netherlands) /
||Stars: Alexandra Gobeille, Allison Janney, Alycia Delmore, Amber Wolfe Wollam, Daniel Malony, Ellen Page, Ethel R. Deans, Josh Pais, Khanh Doan, Ron Livingston, Rosemarie DeWitt, Ruth McRee, Scoot McNairy, Shannon Kipp, Tomo Nakayama
||Synopsis: A massage therapist is unable to do her job when stricken with a mysterious and sudden aversion to bodily contact. Meanwhile, her uptight brother's floundering dental practice receives new life when clients seek out his healing touch.
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Watch Touchy Feely - Alternative Versions.
Lynn Shelton's sophomore film Your Sister's Sister was a terrific
little independent gem, showcasing relationships involving siblings and
the complexities that surround quiet but notable flings we may neglect
to mention to our friends. With a talented cast of three (Rosemarie
DeWitt, Emily Blunt, and the wonderful Mark Duplass) it was a favorable
experience to say the least. Shelton returns a year later with Touchy
Feely which, to say the least, is a disappointing effort after batting
a triple in 2012.
Your Sister's Sister worked because it was predicated off of human
interest and realism in its events and dialog. Shelton asserted herself
in human dialog, and immersed herself in the breathtaking beauty of
Seattle's woodsy environment, making the film easy-on-the-eyes and very
effective. Here, she makes Touchy Feely exist in what appears to be a
fantasy realm, where real-life situations occupy a plot-point of
science-fiction that's not only a bit offputting but difficult to
adjust to. When the film introduces these plot-points, it only becomes
that much harder to stay in-tuned with it, which is an issue seeing as
that's the film's central plot.
Rosemarie DeWitt is Abby, a skilled masseuse who, all of a sudden,
becomes frightened by the touch/texture of human flesh. This is a major
issue because it renders her job impossible. Her brother Paul (Josh
Pais) works as a dentist, with his directionless daughter Jenny (Ellen
Page). When Jenny impulsively states that Paul has a "healing touch"
when it comes to his dental work, the fib becomes true as Paul's work
begins to heal many of his customers and their dental issues.
So, while Abby's job begins to crumble before her eyes due to her
newfound aversion to human skin, Paul's dentistry practices begin to
flourish and the possibilities become endless on his part. We, as the
audience, are simply asked to observe this happening and this is
precisely the issue; the film is void of connection and moments where
true sympathy could've been evoked. We learn nothing about these
characters except some of their situations are sad, some make us
envious, but in the end, all of them are pretty trite and forgettable.
Touchy Feely's issue comes from two things; one, it feels more
gridlocked to a story, where Your Sister's Sister was breezy and flowed
in the wind, thanks to improvisational dialog. The other is that it
tries to humanize something inhuman, which are relationships. It tries
to make them the point of focus in the film and forgets we need to see
the characters involved in the relationship to make them work.
At the end of the film - which runs a rather short eighty-three minutes
- I thought about Lynn Shelton and how Your Sister's Sister struck me
with so much surprise and how little excitement this effort packed. I
simply console and toy with the idea that she is young, smart, and
clearly passionate about not only her home-state of Seattle but film as
an artistic medium. I say what I do after watching a mediocre Woody
Allen movie; "they'll make more."
Starring: Rosemarie DeWitt, John Pais, Ellen Page, Scoot McNairy,
Allison Janney, and Ron Livingston. Directed by: Lynn Shelton.
Tags for Touchy Feely Full Movie
, Allison Janney
, Alycia Delmore
, Amber Wolfe Wollam
, Daniel Malony
, Ellen Page
, Ethel R. Deans
, Josh Pais
, Khanh Doan
, Ron Livingston
, Rosemarie DeWitt
, Ruth McRee
, Scoot McNairy
, Shannon Kipp
, Tomo Nakayama
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