What to do on one of those Sundays when the afternoon looms ahead? Accept an invitation to the Beverly Hills Hi-Def Film Festival to view The Maxwell Multiple Climax – the screening of a funny and unique sex education film? Is that where the Hi-Def part comes in? As soon as I decided to go, the double entendres started whizzing through my brain — short whiz, I might add (e.g. Masters & Johnson –- can you master your Johnson?). As I turned off yet another holiday football game to escape that testosterone overload and go to what would probably be another, a commercial came on advertising how to sell your latest invention and inquired, “Are you sitting on a good idea?” Well, you won’t be after you see The Maxell Multiple Climax! Yet another bad joke — I’m almost sorry, and trust me, there are more to come. (Whoops! There’s another one!)
I met the filmmaker, Brandon Maxwell, in the lobby of the theatre before seeing the movie. What a nice, unprepossessing guy. Tousled brown hair, baggy old cords, spectacles (not glasses), a backpack, and very sweet and sincere. With his mien, I expected his movie to be much the same. Not.
Think Monty Python meets early James Bond meets Rocky & Bullwinkle meets The Pink Panther meets Inspector Gadget meets Dr. Ruth, and throw in the concept of male orgasm for good measure. That’s what I saw, and it was hysterical yet, yes, informative, whether you’re male or female — very different from the very “meaningful” Tantric yoga book proposal I’d been hired to write several years ago. That book proposal was for a self-proclaimed guru who’s really a handsome, wealthy Catholic man/flower-child from Brentwood who has created an empire that’s really all about acceptable orgies and practicing yoga headstands nude. Get the picture? Well I didn’t, at the beginning of the project, and created an appropriately sincere title: “The Power and Joy of Sacred Sex.” When I realized what I was really working on, it thusly gave me an appropriate shock. Finishing the proposal, I inadvertently typed the title as “The Power and Oy of Scared Sex.” This doesn’t describe Brandon Maxwell’s film at all! This is definitely not some primal hootchie-kootchie, touchy/feely, “just wait for it” advice film.
With a ’70s-looking bikinied, afro’d, female guerilla knocking off a row of watermelons with an AK47 for target practice and the very serious narration over it, the “tongue-in-cheek” tone is set. The premise of Brandon Maxwell’s mini-movie is that men have the ability to develop the skill and therefore confidence in order that the sexual experience can be and should be about discovering your partner instead of just performing for her. He offers seemingly easy instructions from stem to sternum for getting in touch with your personal (sic) point of no return, which is apparently a crucial step toward relieving performance anxiety. Supposedly this will result in the ability to “get over yourself” so you can focus on the other person who’s sharing this experience with you.
This is explained in myriad methods and really funny jokes and situations. (Just remember: the joke’s not in your hand!) If all this self-discipline and structure doesn’t have you “there” already, the “time warp, mildly smarmy” sex scenes Maxwell provides — including fantasies with some “devilish” role-playing and the ubiquitous Little Bo Peep costume, a whole squad of wet cheerleader-types, and an al fresco romance — will offer a more immediate source of inspiration for your possibly underactive libido. Even the interspersed animations, including a stick figure endowed with…a stick, bring their point home –- anything worth doing is worth doing well…and we all know it’s worth doing.
If this all seems a little far-fetched and unattainable, simplify the concept by thinking of it in the terms of Carl Jung: “Sensation (i.e., sense perception) tells you that something exists; thinking tells you what it is; feeling tells you whether it is agreeable or not; and intuition tells you from whence it comes and where it is going.” There, now doesn’t it all suddenly make sense, and don’t you feel better?