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Despite a naked Cameron Diaz, Sex Tape goes flaccid 

As appealing as the notion of a naked Cameron Diaz having frequent sex in a raunchy comedy may be to some, the reality of Sex Tape is this: It's incredibly unsexy. Why? Because it's hard to believe a sultry sexpot like Diaz would settle for an average Joe like Jason Segel, so we never buy them as a couple. Worse, the sex scenes aren't sexy — they feel mechanical and choreographed when they should be wild and uninhibited.

The movie is also not funny and lacks energy, and features the worst parenting decision of the year. But the biggest problem is really that Diaz and Segel have zero chemistry. We're supposed to believe their characters met in college and couldn't stop having sex. Instead we notice how uncomfortable they look together and don't laugh at the jokes because none seem genuine.

Currently, Annie (Diaz) and Jay (Segel) are married and have two kids: precocious Clive (Sebastian Hedges Thomas) and adorable Nell (Giselle Eisenberg). With the kids occupying all their attention, sex has become scarce, to the point that even genuine desire and planning rarely yields results. And when they do get the kids out of the house (with Annie on roller skates wearing only pink underwear and a see-through shirt), they still come up empty.

Then, a revelation: Take Dr. Alex Comfort's The Joy of Sex and perform every single position for homemade porno to be recorded on a tablet. (The type of tablet is repeated often — the product placement in this movie is extensive and shameless.)

It works. Annie understandably asks Jay to erase the video, but before he can he learns it's synched to the numerous tablets he's given away to friends and family. Whoops. Now Annie hates him and they have to venture out to surreptitiously retrieve the tablets before anyone watches the video. This includes their mailman, Annie's potential new boss (Rob Lowe), Annie's mother (Nancy Lenehan) and their friends Robby (Rob Corddry) and Tess (Ellie Kemper).

Diaz is in her early 40s, her body looks great, and whatever she may have done above the shoulders hasn't detracted from her beauty. Pairing her with Segel at least allows guys to relate through Segel's character, so when he's having fun with Diaz, so, vicariously, are we. In contrast for the ladies, this is notably less appealing, as Segel's pasty complexion and undeveloped body lack desirability.

It takes legitimate guts for Diaz and Segel to bare all as they do, so credit is deserved for taking chances. Too bad the material doesn't give them more to work with. Segel co-wrote the script with Kate Angelo and Nicholas Stoller (Neighbors), but the story never seems sure what to do with itself after the initial concept. One senses the filmmakers, including director Jake Kasdan, were so enamored with the tagline that they failed to flesh out the story properly — hence the haphazard everything we see on screen.

Tell just about any hetero male that Diaz is making an R-rated movie called Sex Tape, and is seen having sex for a good third of the movie, and he's in. Then he goes and leaves disappointed on all levels. This movie isn't even as good as bad sex.

scene@csindy.com

Film Details

Sex Tape
Rated R · 94 min. · 2014
Official Site: www.sonypictures.com/movies/sextape
Director: Jake Kasdan
Writer: Kate Angelo
Producer: Todd Black, Jason Blumenthal and Steve Tisch
Cast: Cameron Diaz, Jason Segel, Ellie Kemper, Rob Lowe, Jack Black, Jolene Blalock, Rob Corddry, Melissa Paulo, Randall Park and Giselle Eisenberg

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