Kissed by the young Canadian, Lynne Stopkewich, is one of those
made-on-a-shoestring, parents-helping-out, credit-cards-maxed-out sort of films
which are so often touted in the press these days. Ms
Stopkewich’s parents, at least, can be
proud of their daughter’s commercial
savvy, since they are certain to get their money back. Visa, too, can breathe a
sigh of relief. This gal knows how to sell a first film. For it is not enough to
be an attractive and struggling filmmaker taking a risk these days. There are
far too many of those. You’ve also
gotta have a gimmick, and Ms Stopkewich found one that was just lying around,
waiting to be picked up: necrophilia. Of course, it helped that she was an
attractive young woman herself, and that her film tells the story of another
attractive young woman, Sandra Larson (Molly Parker) who is into dead guys.
Somehow it just wouldn’t have had the
same kind of oomph if it had been about a guy screwing stiffs. We expect men to
be perverts, but a distaff perv still has some novelty value.

There is naturally a lot of voiceover mumbo jumbo about the spiritual
benefits of necrophilia. Ms Parker, explaining her
character’s perversion to the
audience, claims that, when making love to a corpse, she receives
seen bodies shining like stars.” Every
time she is shown doing it with a stiff, the screen is filled with light, though
it looks more like car headlights than stars. It also makes use of the
conventions of the coming-of-age flick, as Sandra-as-a-teenager (Natasha Morley)
is shy and lonely and conducts burials of small animals in the woods while she
does “some sort of witchcraft
dance.” It is as she is smearing
herself with chipmunk blood during such a ceremony that she gets her first

Fairly familiar stuff, I think
you’ll agree, in movie land. But at
least Miss Stopkewich has a sense of humor about what she is doing. When Sandra
gets a boyfriend, Matt (Peter Outerbridge), she finds she can tell her secret.
He is sympathetic.
the only way to really know a corpse. I mean, you see it all,

“It was like he knew. Like
he saw right through me,” says
Sandra’s voiceover. Later, when he
asks if her interest in corpses is in men or women she quickly answers,
as if seeking to reassure him that she is not as perverted as that.
Another funny bit comes when Sandra, still a virgin (at least so far as living
men are concerned) comes to Matt’s
bed. She says:
never done this before.”

OK. Just lie back. Just lie

Eventually, Matt comes vicariously to share her obsession, and you could say
that there is a happy ending, in a weird sort of way. But you would have to be
more than weird to buy the film’s
whatever-turns-you-on line that there can be a real fulfilment to be had out of
such patent moral and spiritual sickness.

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