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Now & Later: A Hybrid of Anti-Imperialist Lectures and Garishly Lit Copulating

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Now & Later
Directed by Philippe Diaz
Cinema Libre
Opens February 18, Quad

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Now & Later is a hybrid of three kinds of porn: softcore (sex wedded to narrative, threaded with a romantic artifice), hardcore (if the full-frontal copulating isn’t “real,” it’s so artlessly staged that it might as well be), and lefty-ideological. Indicted banker Bill (stilted stud James Wortham) skips bail and is temporarily taken in by Angela (Shari Solanis), the L.A. illegal-immigrant version of a Magical Negro, who gives him a lost-weekend education in free love and anti-imperialism. Angela’s freshman-reading-level indignation (“You people,” she repeatedly sneers of Americans) is pitched as high wisdom compared with former “master of the universe” Bill’s total ignorance: He cuts off one of her between-fuck Iran-Contra lectures with the dismissal “You read too many novels.” For all of its subtext-free critique of American hypocrisy, Now & Later’s sex is strictly all-American. The main couple cycles through the usual combinations of straight porn—dude gets head, dude watches girl masturbate, dude fucks girl up the ass using unconventional lube. A boy-boy-girl threesome fizzles almost as soon as it’s initiated when Bill protests that he “can’t”; inexplicably, Angela passes over the opportunity to give him the one “you people” lecture that he might actually deserve. Worse, all of this sex is so garishly lit and unimaginatively framed that it’s not even fun to watch.

 
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