Following in the line of Sex, Lies, and Videotape and The Girlfriend Experience comes Autoerotic directed by Adam Wingard and Joe Swanberg. The duo attempts to emulate the dark, erotic noir films of Steven Soderbergh, but awkwardly stumble.

Wingard and Swanberg intend to shed light on the unusual sexual practices and complications of today’s young people, but Autoerotic just seems like a lost film from the very beginning. I could not tell if I was watching a comedy, or just a dark story about the up and downs of sex, and it felt like the latter. I truly don’t think Autoerotic is supposed to be a comedy. I just think the film team lost track of the point of the story.

Autoerotic starts with vignettes about four couples with no religious, cultural or racial differences. They felt too similar from the start, and it became somewhat tiring and boring trying to find the differences or even the conflict in a very dry story.

From the first vignette, we learn of a guy who whines about his less-than-adequate penis size and chases away a girl that is way too hot for him. Then, all of a sudden he has a chemically altered penis and is finally happy. The next vignette is about a girl obsessed with masturbation who engages in erotic asphyxiation. Her boyfriend learns and accepts her fetish, and they live happily ever after.

The overwhelming context of this film seemed to be: Men do not fight back, and girls do what they want. The end. I saw this overwhelmingly in the most entertaining vignette about a pregnant couple.

The couple looks just like the first two, the only difference was that they are expecting a baby. Problems occur when the wife cannot be stimulated sexually, so she has no other option but to seek her best girlfriend to help her reach climax. This comes as no problem for her spineless boyfriend who thinks he is going to be apart of threesome, but much to his dismay can’t even be in the house to watch. He has to sneak in like a burglar watching his prey. His girlfriend gets what she wants, and they both live happily ever after.

The problem with this film was its lack of authenticity in portraying the ethnically diverse society of today with its changing economics and sexual orientations. The couples were all the same, boring and stale.

Autoerotic wasn’t completely bad, it had some highlights, but only a few with too much downtime. It’s a shame because the foundation was there but not enough was built to accomplish the tough task of making a film with such a taboo topic as sex into a classic.

Grade: C-

Autoerotic screens at the Nuart Theatre Aug. 12.