Picks and Pans Review: My Tutor

UPDATED 06/20/1983 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 06/20/1983 at 01:00 AM EDT

Someday, when they are the Richard Gere, Jack Nicholson and Jill Clayburgh of the '90s, Matt Lattanzi, Crispin Glover and Caren Kaye may want to buy up all the prints of this film and burn them. Though My Tutor has moments of charm and a skillful young cast, it is clearly aimed at the late-adolescent, summer-sleaze market. The plot is a thinly disguised version of the smarmy Sylvia Kristel vehicle Private Lessons; it is based on the enduring young male fantasy of an affair with a gorgeous older woman teacher. In the movie, Lattanzi and Glover have just graduated from high school and are dedicating their lives to losing their virginity. (Lattanzi has had similar roles before—with Jacqueline Bisset in Rich and Famous, and in real life as Olivia Newton-John's current live-in.) Kaye is the French tutor hired by Lattanzi's father, Kevin McCarthy, to help the boy pass a test to get into Yale. What happens is predictable. Kaye's jerky boyfriend jilts her, Lattanzi comforts her, and so much for virginity. Despite the weakness of the story, Kaye, 30, and Lattanzi, 24, are so appealing that they give the movie some real romance. The supporting cast is attractive, too, especially newcomer Glover, 18, who has a sly innocence about him, and Arlene Golonka, once Ken Berry's girlfriend on TV's Mayberry RFD. Despite a lot of gratuitous nudity, George (Body and Soul) Bower generally keeps things under control; he obviously knows he isn't making Hamlet, but he doesn't condescend to his audience. (R)

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