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The Lifestyle (1999)

Director: David Schisgall, David Schisgall
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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Fox Lorber
Genre: Documentary
Running Time: 121 min.
Languages: English
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What sort of people engage in recreational group sex on a regular basis? David Schisgall's documentary The Lifestyle provides one answer: mostly cheerful, but paunchy, suburban couples who have either slipped into middle age or are starting to advance past it. For the most part, they look like normal workaday folks, and could even be your neighbors. Schisgall interviews 20 members of "swinging" groups in Orange County, CA, and discovers most are happily married (often for decades), politically lean a bit right of center (several of his subjects once had careers in the military), and are personally unremarkable once you get past their "hobby." The Lifestyle also reveals why AIDS is all but unknown in "swing" circles and takes a trip to a "Lifestyles" convention where fun seekers from around the country get to know each other (in more ways than one). Portraying its subjects with an affectionate sense of humor, The Lifestyle was premiered at the 1999 Los Angeles Independent Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Odd, yes, but still very American by rakdaddy August 13, 2002 - 11:00 AM PDT
6 out of 6 members found this review helpful
After getting over the initial shock of seeing some footage shot in my hometown of Costa Mesa (who knew there were swingers in my neighborhood?), I settled into this gem of a documentary. Yes, you're gonna see people who look like your parents and grandparents (hell, maybe they are your parents and grandparents) swinging and swapping partners and talking about sex chairs and bondage and lubricant. But you'll also see them having BBQs and showing off pictures of their grandkids and acting like your typical suburban Americans. While this may ruin the fantasy that the only people who swing are chisled, sexy couples, it'll also make you think about it: just what's so bad about swinging anyway? Why is it taboo? And are the people who engage in the Lifestyle, as everyone calls it, really that perverted?

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 5.84)
19 Votes
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