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Kissing Jessica Stein (2002)

Jennifer Westfeldt , Heather Juergensen  |  R |  DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (185 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Jennifer Westfeldt, Heather Juergensen
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: September 17, 2002
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (185 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00003CYJ4
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,296 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Kissing Jessica Stein" on IMDb

Special Features

  • 7 Deleted Scenes with commentary plus outtakes
  • Behind-the-scenes featurette

Editorial Reviews

Sex and the single girl gets a fresh new spin in this "very funny movie"! (Joel Siegel, Good morning America) Fed up with her fruitless search for "Mr. Right" and tired of blind dates from hell, attractive journalist Jessica Stein whimsically responds to a classified ad - from Helen! Making and breaking new rules of dating as they go, the two women muddle through an earnest but hilarious courtship that blurs the lines between friendship and romantic love in this "smashing romantic comedy" (Rolling Stone)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
89 of 94 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pucker up for "Jessica"! April 16, 2002
"Kissing Jessica Stein," directed by Charles Herman-Wurmfeld, tells the story of a young, single, Jewish professional woman in New York City (the Jessica of the title, played by Jennifer Westfeldt). She's fed up with men after a series of bad experiences. Intrigued by a "woman-seeks-woman" personal ad, Jessic decides to give lesbianism a try. The object of her often clumsy affection is Helen (Heather Juergensen), a sexy art gallery manager.
This movie hooked me from its outrageous opening scene, in which Jessica, her mother, and her grandmother bicker and gossip about men during a Day of Atonement service. "Jessica" is a wonderfully funny and sweet film, filled with witty dialogue and some genuinely touching moments. The ensemble cast is superb. Westfeldt and Juergensen shine in the lead roles. Westfeldt, who looks remarkably like Lisa Kudrow, is reminiscent of a young female Woody Allen in this quirky, neurotic role. Juergensen brings an irreverent sensuality to her role. The two are delicious together. Although the whole supporting cast is great, I was particularly moved by Tovah Feldshuh as Jessica's loving mother.
I'm sure people will be tempted to pigeonhole "Jessica" as a "lesbian" movie, a "New York" movie, and/or a "Jewish" movie. It's certainly all of these, but its charm and universality also transcend all categories. It's about love, family ties, friendship, self-knowledge, and other issues that are relevant to everybody. And the film is populated with a wonderful group of characters -- male and female, Jewish and gentile, straight, gay, and "bi-curious" -- who are treated with affection and respect by the filmmakers. My advice: whatever your own preferences, prepare to kiss "Jessica" and love it.
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50 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I adored this hilarious and touching film! April 14, 2004
Format:DVD
I absolutely adored this film - for its real life messiness, for its honest performances, for the eye it turns toward the unexpected nature of life and love. When mousy, perfectionist copyeditor Jessica (Jennifer Westfeldt) answers a personal ad for "women seeking women" on a whim - she is, and always has been, heterosexual - she meets Helen (Heather Juergenson), a sexy, confident bisexual who works in an art gallery. The two women click on a deep soul-mate level. As Jessica begins to find the happiness that has eluded her for so long, her high spirits are contagious - except to dark but lovable Josh (Scott Cohen), who is perplexed by his own feelings for the newly liberated, but still closeted, Jessica. Westfeldt and Juergenson, who also co-wrote the screenplay, provide so much depth to their characterizations and situations that the viewer must wrestle with his own expectations. Jessica's awkward and sometimes outrageously funny exploration of what it means to love another woman never takes the easy way out.
The chemistry between Westfeldt and Juergenson is so phenomenal that even the most prudish viewer will want them to find happiness together. Tovah Feldshuh plays Jessica's mother with energy and deep sensitivity; her powerful performance in one scene provides the pivot upon which the entire film turns. And how can one not like angst-filled, love-stricken Josh the way Cohen plays him? Even the supporting actors turn in memorable performances.
"Kissing Jessica Stein" is an off-beat romantic comedy that has far more hilarity than its more tired and traditional siblings. The story unfolds with a naturalness that deserves to be admired. The views of New York from Hoboken, as well as shots of Hoboken itself, provide an excellent backdrop to a story that blends progressive ideas with the old-fashioned, just as Hoboken itself does.
I loved it.
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29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A step in the right direction for romantic comedy April 18, 2002
By SEP
Verified Purchase
This was a wonderful beginning to what I hope is a more open-minded approach to romantic comedies--two strong, reletively secure, stable women who fall in love. There are obvious neuroses (what would a romantic comedy be without it?) but the two women, Helen and Jessica, are impressively "together" all on their own.
Jessica Stein is a brilliant, but bored, copy editor whose boss happens to be an old flame from college. Just when she has convinced herself that she isn't the problem--blaming everything the non-commital ...men of New York--her brother announces his engagement. Mortified and a little worried about her own single status, Jessica makes a life-altering decision: she answers a singles ad placed by another woman.
...I won't leak any details (because it's too funny to give away) but they're hilarious as they fumble through their relationship, learning as they go.
This movie is laden with great actresses, many of whom I've never seen before. We'll doubtless see more of Jennifer Westfeldt and Heather Juergensen (hopefully as a team, since they write and act exceptionally well together). The wonderfully quirky performances of Jackie Hoffman (Joan) and Esther Wurmfeld (Grandma) are hilarious.
The most refreshing aspect of this movie is that it doesn't acknowledge the "femme" and "butch" stereotypes of lesbian relationships. Also, Westfeldt and Juergensen have written a screenplay that beautifully depicts (FINALLY) a long-neglected truth: sexuality is not black and white but rather fluid and ever-changing. I'm sure this "type" relationship is more common than anyone likes to admit. This movie is funny, quirky, fresh and all-around fun. I highly recommend it!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars great fun
Jennifer Westfeldt who wrote and produced this film is a great talent, both behind and in front of the camera. Read more
Published 2 months ago by diana lin
5.0 out of 5 stars Kissing Jessica Stein
This was a surprising movie that I actually enjoyed thoroughly! Will probably watch it again just be sure I caught everything...
Published 2 months ago by Pamela Jo Christian
4.0 out of 5 stars funny & akward!!
this movie is a very funny , yet there are some awkward moments in it,
it about two ladies with completely differant ideas of a relationship,
as you will see, one is... Read more
Published 2 months ago by sefriendlyguy
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun story. Good sound track.
This is the story of a woman who cannot, despite her best efforts, find a mate. The movie starts with her going out on a lot of bad and funny blind dates. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Sue
3.0 out of 5 stars More Edgy Than Funny
A young Jewish woman's overbearing mother and best friend pressure her into a series of blind dates gone wrong, then she meets a lesbian from a singles ad who really seems to click... Read more
Published 3 months ago by mr. critic
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite Relationship movies!
A really well made comedic indie film with lots of heart; about finding and connecting with someone special, even if it's "unconventional".
Published 4 months ago by B. Simmons
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny and well written
I really liked this movie. It was funny, sweet and original. I would recommend this movie to my straight and gay friends.
Published 4 months ago by Karen Van Vleet
3.0 out of 5 stars Decent not amazing
It was decent. There are some really cute and funny parts but over all not that impressive. I thought the ending was a bit of a cop out.
Published 5 months ago by Morgan
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it!
My favorite movie of all time. A bit underrated but it brings me to tears every time I watch it. Characters are brilliant and the story is honest! Read more
Published 5 months ago by Brittney brown
5.0 out of 5 stars A Lighthearted Tackle of a Worthy Subject.
I have seen this movie on video store shelves and my video recommendation pages for ages. Its cover has always deterred me from renting it -- it just seemed too immature-ish and... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Irina
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