September 10, 2005

The Forty-Year-Old Virgin

The highest compliment I can offer to a movie called "The Forty-Year-Old Virgin" is that it is intelligently assembled and thoughtfully rendered. Steve Carell and director Judd Apatow could have made a very simple, crass, and rude sex comedy. Instead, they've invented a interesting, complex, human protagonist whom the crowd roots for, even if he is a giant super-nerd.forty

Andy (Carell) is a painfully shy sci-fi nerd who has carved out a tidy little niche for himself: his apartment is fully equipped with videogames, home theater, and action figures, every week he watches "Survivor" with the nice retired couple upstairs, and he works at a Circuit City-style electronics store where he doesn't have to interact with anyone, especially women. In his teens, he missed his chance to have sex for the first time. At age forty, how do you explain to a woman that you don' t know how to have sex? "I respect women so much I stay completely away from them!" he explains, so it will take several misguided social-science experiments by his three horndog coworkers (Paul Rudd, Seth Rogen, and Romany Malco) to get him some action. The male relationships are so lovingly rendered, this is truly the Summer of the Chuck Flick. (August 27 and September 10, AMC Fenway)