NOTE: This spoiler was sent in by Esther who says... "This biopic is about Professor Alfred C. Kinsey, who in 1948 - 1953, caused an uproar in the USA with his twin offerings of "Sexual Behavior in the Human Male" and "Sexual Behavior in the Human Female". I really looked forward to show because Liam Neeson is one fine actor, and this film definitely didn't disapoint, because learning about sex is always fun."
The movie opens with an interviewer Clyde (Peter Saarsgaard), who is obviously quite uncomfortable asking some questions to delve into a interviewee's sexual background. As he uses words such as "played with yourself", he is rapped verbally by Alfred Kinsey (Liam Neeson), who tells him that you must not use coined/obscure lingos when interviewing the people, instead, you must see what level of society they are from, and use the appropriate words, e.g. c*nt, jacking off, piss..... (you catch the drift - it is fun to watch Liam Neeson spew a string of vulgarities with a straight face. =) ) Clyde corrects himself and continues the interview. It comes to the point when Kinsey is asked about his relationship with his father, and we have a flashback.
We see Kinsey's father (John Lithgow) is a preacher, and he is giving a sermon about the immoralities about today. (A particular part of the speech that I found hilarious was where the puritan preacher intones about the dastardly nature of the ZIPPER as it 'provides speedy access to moral oblivion" =) ) As Kinsey grows up, he is overshadowed by his domineering father, who is just about as happy as a man with a javelin up his backside, to the point that he rebels against his father and goes away to study biology (his father wanted him to do engineering).
We return back to the interview scene, where we see other interviewers taking turns - Wardell (Chris O' Donnell) and Paul (Timothy Hutton). We learn that they are one of the few selected to be interviewers for Kinsey's special project. We flashback again to Kinsey in his younger years - he is a professor interested in gallwasps (bugs), and in his class is Clara McMillian (Laura Linney). She affectionately terms Kinsey as PROK, which stands for PROfessor Kinsey. We see some scenes of their touching, albeit weird, courtship. On their wedding night, we learn that both Kinsey and Clara (whom Kinsey calls as Mc - pronounced Mac) are both virgins. Kinsey, eager after years of self-help, is nervous and makes a mess of the whole situation, which ends up with a distressed couple unable to enjoy sex. They decide to get help (after a particular trying night of having dinner with Kinsey's parents, caused by dear old papa Kinsey and his intonations). A trip to the gynaecologist reveals Clara's extra-thick hymen which contradicts Kinsey's extra-long p**is (*beep beep - but Kinsey was indeed hung. =) ). The gynaecologist provides some sex tips on positions and soon the happy couple is producing 3 children.
During a dinner function, Kinsey is being 'honored' for his book on gallwasps. He is squared off with the Thurman Rice (Tim Curry), who is a prudish stiff in charge of "Hygiene" class for the students. Rice's idea of sex education is to scare the boys off with stories and folktales about pregnancy, STDs, VDs and other what-nots. Kinsey is livid as those stories are unfounded and tend to further incite the boys to try out and do the wrong things, since they are not exposed to the truths of the 'forbidden fruit". He urges the Mayor to change the way sex education is given, but is passed over. We are then treated to a scene where we see Rice give his hygiene class (Hilarious).
Kinsey takes matters into his own hands and starts off by having a 'sex education lecture', by invitation to married or engaged couples only (though many others sneak in). We see that his lecture attracts a big crowd, and his lectures is no-holds-barred: closeup pictures of genitals during sex are shown, which shock many at first, but they are soon enjoying themselves. The lecture is a big hit and Kinsey takes the opportunity to test a preliminary survey on the attendees. An idea to then conduct a nationwide survey using relatively large sample (that is representative of the general population) from each city to participate in a comprehensive 150 questions sex interview. He selects his interviewers Wardell, Paul and Clyde (Peter Saarsgaard). During the process, Kinsey discovers a lot of himself and that he is impartial to having a homosexual experience - he and Clyde get in on in one uncomfortable scene. Kinsey makes the mistake of telling Mac about this; naturally she is upset as he seems really cavalier and all business-like about it; after all, to him, it's research and it's just sex. Mac doesn't think so.
We are then giving scenes and shots of these interviews taking place. We heard clips and snippets of what is being asked, and what is being revealed. We see that many people, all of different ethnicity, age, color, gender, preferences reveal their innermost secret bedroom behavior. All this is being coded down then later manually churned. Kinsey's dad is not too pleased with the idea of his son doing a sex survey, but a heartwarming and truthful session between father and son reveals that his father had a genital defect which infallingly led to his prudish approach to sex in his later years.
Kinsey then produces a book "Sexual Behavior of the adult Male", which is a big hit and he becomes popular. He gets funding for his projects and is on the faces of magazines and held in regard anywhere. Kinsey wants to continue the other side of the coin: i.e. to do a female version of the book. What he fails to realise, however, is how the project (that is all what it means to him) has taken such a toll and has severe backlashes upon him and his family, as well as those of his interviewers and their families. Things get VERY complicated and we see all sorts of sexual relationships popping up inter se; such as Clyde having sex with Mac after asking Kinsey's permission (he was very reluctant but would be eating his own foot had he said no), and Wardell having sex with Paul's wife, etc etc etc.
The research for the 2nd book is ongoing, and the things we hear are that people are not too happy with the book; after all, it's okay to know what men think/have done/do, but it is unthinkable to read about someone's grandmother masturbating in the bathroom for example. Kinsey perseveres but true enough, the book is a failure. It is publicly condemned and quashed, and Kinsey becomes an emotionally broken man. His funding is cut and most things go downhill. He only picks himself up after a particular meeting with a woman, who reveals to him how his book saved her and gave her courage, and for that, she found her true love which was in the other woman friend she loved all along but never told, and the relief came when she found out the feelings were mutual.
The show ends with Kinsey and Mac kind of reinforcing their love for each other in a poetic way (something about how a tree sinks its roots down but is never far away.)
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