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Maggie Gyllenhaal and James Spader turn up the heat in this critically acclaimed erotic drama, based on the infamous short story by acclaimed American novelist Mary Gaitskill. Lee Holloway has never had a job. When she applies for a secretarial position at the law office of E. Edward Grey, she realises her true calling: flirting, typing and making coffee. She and her new boss embark on a more personal relationship, crossing the lines of conduct that would shock any human resource director! (Via Vision Entertainment)


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English For a very long time, American studios had to adhere to the so-called moral code and especially the productions of big studios were characterized by incredible prudishness. Then things opened up a bit, which led to a lot of nudity, vulgarity, and unnecessary films that relied on the cheapest pandering. Secretary is not an erotic film, as it is rather a humorous story about the search for sexual identity and coming to terms with it. While homosexuality has been successfully portrayed multiple times and certainly does not surprise as a topic, sexual deviation, which plays an important role in the film's story, still has a touch of something unusual, rarely seen in fictional films. Maggie Gyllenhaal and James Spader act with perspective and Secretary can be considered a pleasant film in the style of the American independent scene. It is a film that, although cautiously and gently (in fact, it moves within the boundaries of classic romantic comedies despite its tragicomic and dramatic elements), still pushes the boundaries of style and theme. Overall impression: 80%. It is, among other things, a film about tolerance, and it will probably be appreciated by those who have long understood that the boundaries of so-called normality are moving elsewhere than in the previous century and that love has many forms... ()


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English A perfect example of a perverted film that’s not for perverts. :) Explicit scenes are, with perhaps one exception, not to be found here; everything is subordinated to the charm of the two leads and the tremendous chemistry between them (which can be clearly seen in the first more intimate conversation when Lee is offered hot chocolate). I admire Steven Shainberg for choosing such a challenging subject and managing to conceptualize and film it with ease, insight, and a commensurate amount of wit. It seems to me that if Shainberg had tried to strum a more serious string all the time, the result could have seemed mechanical and ridiculous (not funny, as it does in this production). Since this is actually a portrait (I wouldn't call it a study) of two closeted people with similar obsessions, there are some psychological "hints" in the plot and the film takes on a more serious dramatic edge for a while, but the comedic level clearly prevails. An immensely likeable indie in which Maggie Gyllenhaal is wonderfully endearing and as Lee evokes no small amount of sympathy. ()



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English Naughty nineties cool, or Pretty Woman for romantic perverts. The vulnerable, searching and devoted Maggie Gyllenhaal in a story of an unusually powerful intimate pairing that may end in a separation with emotional devastation or in a partnered relationship with complete fulfilment. James Spader offers up his usual vocal precision both when he is holding back and in explosive moments. The erotic scenes are psychologically probing and exciting, the detached humour brings pleasant relief, and the emotional drama has impact. A bold and surprisingly appealing, one-of-a-kind relationship movie. ()

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