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Movie review: A suburbanite in the sex trade in steamy 'Concussion'

Published October 17, 2013 6:10 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

There is a real concussion at the beginning of the antiseptically beautiful "Concussion," but it's also a metaphor that's no less jarring in this modern take on "Belle du Jour."

When Abby (Robin Weigert), a suburban lesbian married to Kay (Julie Fain Lawrence), gets hit by a baseball thrown by one of their children, it sets off a need to shake up her routine existence. She works on renovating a downtown loft with a contractor, Justin (Jonathan Tchaikowsky), who also pimps on the side — and Abby decides to sign on as a high-end hooker, using the professional name Eleanor.

Writer-director Stacie Passon's sexually charged premise becomes a vehicle for an emotional exploration of a stagnant relationship and the struggle between desire and stability. The slick look (by production designer Lisa Myers and art director Kevin P. O'Donnell) highlights the split between Abby's suburban oppression and her urban freedom.

Weigert ("Deadwood," "The Sessions") gives a performance that's revelatory in more ways than one, as Abby sheds inhibitions and clothes.

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HHH

'Concussion'

Opens Friday, Oct. 18, at the Broadway Centre Cinemas; rated R for strong sexual content and some language; 96 minutes.