Disclaimer: This post is adult in nature and therefore only intended for a mature audience.
I first heard of “Matinee“, Jennifer Lyon Bell’s smart, artsy drama filled to the brim with sexual explicitness, from Good Vibrations who sent me an email a few weeks ago introducing the film and also giving me the opportunity to review it. Upon reading its synopsis, I was immediately intrigued. While residing well within the porn world, “Matinee” is defined by such sweet, delightful, irresistible words; words like acting, authentic sex, storyline, and high production quality. It also features beautiful lighting and original music to boot.
“Matinee” stars Alicia Whitsover as Mariah and Steven McAlistair as Daniel; they’re both theater actors starring in a matinee show that has received terrible reviews citing lack of sexual chemistry between the two. In an attempt to spark chemistry on-stage, they begin practicing their scene before the final curtain rises by going through the motions of what is supposed to portray sensuality and affection for one another. When Daniel brings up the option of improvising on stage, Mariah is very much against it. Just before they are set to go on stage, the two still have no idea what they will do to add chemistry to their performance, but after Mariah gives their situation more thought before positioning herself on stage, and listening to the advice of the fellow actresses in the theater to “go for it,” she does. Daniel walks out on stage, in front of a scarcely-filled audience, to see Mariah on her mark, sitting up on a bed dressed only in a robe.
After delivering maybe a handful of words, the film rolls out into a full-on, 20-minute-or-so sex scene, complete with surprisingly accurate foreplay that captures the increasing arousal of both people; and it is surprisingly pretty fantastic. I have seen a lot of porn and in more cases than not, porn shows two people (or sometimes more) meeting up, taking their clothes off, and immediately getting down to business. This is not the way real sex works. Immediately trying to shove something inside of a woman without anything even slightly sexual happening beforehand hardly works; in fact, it’s just painful for everyone involved.
I really loved a lot of things about “Matinee”. First of all, hello stunningly real, relateable body types! Both Steven McAlistair and Alicia Whitsover have bodies that we have all seen in our daily lives, rather than the typical bodies we see in movies, magazines, and on television. For instance, when Mariah (Whitsover) lays down on the bed, her breasts flatten, falling to her sides, and when she leans over to grab a condom she has stashed away in the pocket of her robe and then rolls it onto Daniel’s (McAlistair’s) penis, you can clearly see a small roll of fat around her midsection. Also, Mariah has a full bush, which is definitely something we don’t get to see a lot in the porn industry. But let’s backpedal for a second while here. Speaking of the use of contraception, when Mariah puts the condom on Daniel, she proceeds to go down on him. While capturing safe sex was obviously important to Jennifer Lyon Bell, when I saw Mariah giving Daniel a blow job with a condom on, I wondered why Daniel had not used a dental dam when he was going down on Mariah. If you are going to show safe sex, I think it is important to show it universally, especially when a staggering amount of people are still not aware of the dental dam’s existence or how to properly use one. Sure, it can be argued that Daniel did not know exactly what was going to happen between himself and Mariah when he walked on stage; this raw sex scene in front of their audience was put into motion by Mariah, but I doubt a woman who uses a condom to give a man a blow job would allow someone to give her oral sex without protection.
Honestly, I was more focused on Alicia Whitsover throughout the entire film, rather than Steven McAlistair, who just seemed to be along for the ride as Whitsover commanded the attention throughout. While the quality of acting is absolutely phenomenal for the porn industry, Whitsover was at times nervous, unsure, undeniably seductive, and absolutely believable, the only thing I took away from McAlistair was bewilderment; that is until the end. The end scene of the film is funny in a way; two people who have just had amazing, fulfilling sex remain obvious friends at the end and not one tinge of weirdness comes through.
“Matinee” is a sensual and exciting film. While it is not something I would watch with the sole intention of getting off with minimal effort, it is something I would pop in as foreplay in itself, and it works very well in that respect. Sadly, “Matinee” only clocks in at 34 minutes, which is a damn travesty if you ask me. I would have liked to see more happening in “Matinee”; a bit more to the storyline and another sex scene or two. Having a little more to it would probably justify its $29.95 price tag to most as well, as it is a bit of a drastic price for just one scene. However, I am very glad that I have had the opportunity to see “Matinee” and become very interested in what else Jennifer Lyon Bell has up her sleeve.