Feature

Steven Soderbergh and Sasha Grey: ‘The Girlfriend Experience’

Is director Soderbergh's film about an upscale Manhattan call girl, starring a real-life porn star, "mysterious" or dull?

Director Steven Soderbergh “has captured an America in which the line between selling out and selling yourself has never been thinner,” said Owen Gleiberman in Entertainment Weekly. The Girlfriend Experience, starring real-life porn star Sasha Grey as an upscale Manhattan call girl, “is a mysterious and arresting look at how the culture of money turns love and desire into something you want to control.” (watch the trailer for The Girlfriend Experience)

“There is something undeniably compelling about watching Grey flounder around onscreen next to this host of creepy user-men,” said Rob Boylan in the Orlando Weekly, while also attempting “to reach the next plateau of her business” and “find real love.” But it’s “impossible to root for her” character, and The Girlfriend Experience “is not a good film by any stretch.”

“Most of the dialogue is listless,” said David Edelstein in New York magazine, “and no matter how much Soderbergh snips and stitches, the movie is a corpse with twitching limbs.” And it’s not too often that you find “actors who appear to be improvising (badly) and yet manage so often to step on one another’s lines.”

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