Take fun, but not advice, from "Sexual Failures

By Tatiana Craine

It’s hard enough to find love. Most people begin their quest for companionship nonchalant, in bars, clubs and concerts. A few people find their special someone in grocery store aisles. Others stumble upon their mates online or through blind dates. Few have tried to discover their soulmates by contacting each and every one of their former lovers. Independent filmmaker Chris Waitt knows all about this.”A Complete History of My Sexual Failures” documents Waitt’s seemingly never-ending search for why he sucks at being a boyfriend. For an hour and a half, the camera follows this somehow endearing loser as he gets in touch with all of his ex-girlfriends in efforts to learn from his personal mistakes. Maybe it’s his winning British accent or maybe it’s how pathetically Waitt portrays himself, but you have no choice but to root for him.

After getting dumped by his girlfriend of three whole weeks, Waitt decides that it is prime time to find out why all his ex-girlfriends found him so unappealing. He makes a list of all exes in memory and starts calling to schedule interviews with him for his film. Each of them refuses. He tries to ring their doorbells, headphones and microphone boom in hand, and gets doors slammed in his face.

The only woman who consents to see Waitt is his mum, a woman who has clearly (and somehow lovingly) put up with far too much of her son’s crap. By the by, she has also saved all of his old love letters. They skim through the letters and Waitt finds he’s forgotten a few girls from his past. They all decline his pleas for interviews, too.

Waitt’s producer gets increasingly tense about the situation: a film about ex-girlfriends that has no ex-girlfriends.

His mum finally wheedles an old ex into seeing Chris for a few minutes. They dated when they were eleven.

When all seems lost, in Waitt’s love life and the film, things suddenly start to look up, or at least vaguely upwards. Waitts snags a few more interviews, gets a MySpace page and goes on a blind date. He also learns he has erectile dysfunction, something a thirty-something Kurt Cobain look-alike cannot bear. The rest of the film consists of dodgy shots of Waitt’s penis in a doctor’s office and an S & M parlor and the effects of a drunken Viagra overdose.

However contrived Waitt’s uselessness may seem (wandering the street after taking seven Viagra pills and soliciting people for sex is not conventional, nor does it look sincere), there is heart and love right in the middle of this film. The love of his life, the woman he was engaged to for four years, at long last agrees to meet with him for a rather poignant interview. Incidentally, this same woman received a œ19 engagement ring from Waitt and upon their break-up, dedicated a novel in which the boyfriend character gets brutally murdered.

Love can’t always be sunshine and daisies.

Despite Waitt’s dunderheaded attitude towards most of his endeavors, he captures heart-wrenching experiences while capitalizing on them comically, making them hurt a little less. Everyone has had self-deprecating moments when they ask about their worth: what’s wrong with me, why don’t they like me, what don’t I have to offer? Waitt takes his own moments of self-doubt and lets heartbroken and unlucky singles see that they’re not quite alone, even if they don’t have a soulmate just yet.