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Sex and Death 101

3.5 out of 5 stars 105 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Roderick Blank, Simon Baker, is a successful modern man, content with his personal and professional life. However, a week before his wedding to a suitably stuffy fiancee, Rodericks perfectly planned existence is upended by a mysterious e-mail containing the names of every woman he has had sex with and, eerily, every woman he will have sex with in the future. He is stopped in his tracks when he meets a femme fatale, Winona Ryder, who targets men guilty of sex crimes against women. Co-starring Patton Oswalt and directed by Daniel Waters, writer of the cult hit Heathers.


Sex and Death 101 presents an intriguing premise: If you were given a list of all the people you were destined to sleep with, would you give up what you currently have to fulfill that prophecy? That's exactly what happens to Roderick Blank (Simon Baker, The Devil Wears Prada, The Mentalist), who is engaged to a beautiful woman. But when he receives an anonymous message stating that he will sleep with 101 women in his lifetime--and she is but 29th on the list--he throws his life into turmoil. A dark comedy from Daniel Waters, who also penned the superb Heathers, Sex and Death 101 doesn't have the effortless flow of Waters' breakthrough film. His muse Winona Ryder returns as a disturbed woman with a jones for Roderick and a penchant for the darker side of life. But she is given too little to do to make much of an impact on the meandering plot. Much of the dialogue does little to help the matter. "Life is a lot like death," Roderick says. "It happens to everyone, whether they like it or not." The problem with Sex and Death 101 is that the line between life and death often isn't discernible. Baker and Ryder have both fared better in stronger projects. The bright spot in this movie is Mindy Cohn (The Facts of Life), who plays Roderick's put upon assistant Trixie. She proves to be more interesting and endearing than the leads, and adds wry humor to what could've been a thankless role. --Jae-Ha Kim

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Simon Baker, Winona Ryder, Patton Oswalt, Marshall Bell, Julie Bowen
  • Directors: Dan Waters
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, Enhanced, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Anchor Bay - ITN
  • DVD Release Date: July 1, 2008
  • Run Time: 117 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0013F2ESM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #78,794 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Sex and Death 101" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Told through first-person narration, Sex and Death 101 is a little like the Wachowskis' The Matrix collides with Shainberg's Secretary (stick with me here). The premise: a (sentient?) "machine" has begun interfering with humanity, issuing e-mails that reveal a person's fate. While many people received an e-mail revealing their death-day, Roderick Blank was "gifted" with a list of every woman he has and WILL sleep with. Sounds great, right? Well, what the viewer learns is that "the chase" is fairly boring when the results are a given. Watching Rodrick try to plow through his list is dark and hysterical (especially when we reach Bambi and Thumper ... a world-class, lesbian power-couple). Now for the twist, the FINAL person on Roderick's list is a notorious serial-killer ...

With a budget of five-million, Waters created a pretty slick film. The casting is quirky (in a fantastic way!!). Patton Oswalt (The King of Queens and Ratatouille) plays a lascivious lackey to the "Morpheus-like" Alpha. I'm entirely biased here (since I think Oswalt is one of the most adorable, underrated actors in Hollywood), but his character alone makes the film worth watching. Moreover, Mindy Cohn (The Facts of Life) was a brave and fabulous choice. All grown up, Cohn rocks her character.
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Format: DVD
Spoilers warning and adult themed review to follow.

How can a sex comedy go wrong with such themes as turtle diarrhea, a lesbian power couple named Bambi and Thumper, a religious school bus group devirginization marathon, and/or knowing your sexual future? Or with script writing that includes a "sloppy fusion of genitalia", an "intercourse buffet" and a reference to that "whore-bitch Jane Austen"? If you are not amused or are even offended right now - you might want to skip this movie (and review).

Daniel Waters has made a fun, original film about a man who is given the "gift" of knowing his future, specifically his upcoming sexual conquests, whether man or woman, all categorized on a nice list. Waters is oft remembered for his deviant writing with Heathers or Happy Campers, but in this case he gets to indulge a high volume of sexual perversions into one film.

The two leads were cast appropriately with a needed "pretty boy" in Simon Baker (I remember him most from his brief role in LA Confidential) and Winona Ryder playing the femme fatale/serial coma-inducer. A great supporting cast in Mindy Cohn, Julie Bowen (who I liked in the Ed TV series), the Janitor from Scrubs, Natasha Malthe, etc.

The film has two story lines, one involves the man who has it all that receives this list (origins of which can only be seen in the film to understand) containing all of his past and future sexual escapades. He gets this the week of his wedding - only to find out there are 60+ names listed after his soon to be wife. The other story is Winona's character resolving her past sufferings by inducing comas upon every man she sleeps with. The remaining twists and interlocking plots need to be watched as they can't be explained without spoiling too much.
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Format: DVD Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
While I feel a little bit guilty for saying this, I liked it. Yup, that's right. In its off the wall & unexpected way, this was a uniquely entertaining movie. I readily concede that this DVD will not be accepted in the same way by all people.

The premise of the film asks an interesting question: what IF you knew the names of all the women you would sleep with between now & the grave? Sounds great, right? Some supercomputer somewhere (I presume using chaos theory or something) has learned how to tell the future. It accidentally sends an e-mail to the persona (Simon Baker) which lists all the women he's ever slept with, as well as all the women he ever will become intimate with.

Problem is, the poor fella is supposed to be getting married, and this list messes everything up. So, he turns into a playboy and begins going down the list. Problem is, there is no longer any "challenge" in it. As soon as he's struck one girl's name off the list, he's ready to go on to the next one. The best analogy in the movie is when he says that his life is like a taped-delay game of a football game. He already KNOWS the final score & that his team won, but he doesn't know HOW they won. Along the way, he is offered consolation / guidance by his lesbian secretary (Mindy Cohn; the first time I've seen her in anything since The Facts of Life - The Complete First & Second Seasons way back in the 1980s).

The main issue with the list is the name of the last girl on it. Her nickname is "Death Nell" (played by Winona Ryder) and she is a sort of black-widow who is out to have revenge on the male gender due to the fact that she was mis-treated by her ex. Uh oh!
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