Sunday, 19 July 2009


In one of the more unusual sci-fi plots, one which still seems quite ingenious twenty-five years on, a pair of foolhardy men in early nineties Poland submit themselves to a human hibernation experiment which, to the audience’s benefit, goes awry. The men, named Max and Albert, awaken half a century longer than anticipated and are informed, to their bewilderment, that all males have died out. The two are quarantined in a cell which forms part of a compound run, naturally, by women. Initially fearful, the men soon realise that they themselves are the object of fear, and use this to their advantage, gradually breaking down the prejudices of one of the scientists, Lamia. Together, the trio take down the compound from the inside and make their escape.

Consistently entertaining, Sexmission derives humour from every facet of the gender divide without being too chauvinistic. Women certainly come off the worse of the two sexes, their system of government being exposed as grossly decadent, but men do not escape criticism either, having to negotiate their manhood in order to come to any success. The film also lampoons the suffocating effects of communist Poland – this is particularly evident when the three escape into the luxuries of the ‘real’ world. A detained elderly woman fondly remembers the age of man, evoking the older generations embittered by change. In addition to its political satire, the film wows with its elaborate set designs, although the same can’t be said for the computers, which remain hilariously retrograde.

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