My Tutor (1983)
“School’s out…But Bobby’s education has just begun”
My Tutor (1983)
Director: George Bowers
Cast: Matt Lattanzi, Caren Kaye, Kevin McCarthy
Synopsis: A rich father hires a tutor for his son. The son is a horny teenager and the tutor is a gorgeous blonde. Complications ensue.
It was probably Paul Brickman’s Risky Business (1981), in which Tom Cruise learned about life and sex from Rebecca De Mornay, that kicked off the 1980s glut of wish fulfilment fantasies in which teenage boys were improbably seduced by gorgeous women who were at least ten years older than their youthful paramours. The movies followed a rigid formula and generally promised more than they actually offered, and My Tutor was no exception. The Tom Cruise stand-in here is Matt Lattanzi, who’s probably better remembered for being Mr. Olivia Newton-John than for his film work. He plays Bobby Chrystal, the son of a wealthy business tycoon (Kevin McCarthy – Invasion of the Body Snatchers, The Howling) intent on seeing his son follow in his footsteps by attending Yale before embarking on a business career. For some reason, Bobby’s acceptance to Yale depends on his passing his French exam, and so his dad hires attractive Terry Green (Caren Kaye) for some extra lessons over the summer break. Of course, it’s not long before Terry is falling for Bobby’s charms, even though he has a creepy habit of spying on her swimming in his daddy’s pool in the middle of the night.
This romance isn’t enough to sustain a whole movie, so Bobby is saddled with the dreaded comic-relief buddies (Crispin Glover – Michael J. Fox’s father in Back to the Future) that was a fixture of every 80s teen comedy. Like Bobby, Jack (Glover) is desperate to lose his virginity. Unlike Bobby, Jack is something of a nerd, and we can understand why girls aren’t interested in him. Anyway, between Bobby’s half-hearted attempts at learning French and his furtive spying on the semi-nude Ms. Green, we’re treated to the misadventures of the Virgin Twins as they strive in vain to pop their cherries. Then, to add a little drama, Terry’s recently dumped ex-boyfriend appears on the scene to jeopardise Bobby’s chances of getting Terry into the sack.
My Tutor is as lame as its title suggests – and is also pretty tame for an ‘80s teen sex comedy. Its attempt to inject some dramatic moments between the so-called comedy adds nothing other than to unnecessarily prolong the running time. The lead characters have nothing to distinguish them from any other movie of this type, and its’ only clever idea is to have the Chrystal’s Mexican staff pretend not to understand English around Bobby’s somewhat daffy mother. One half-decent idea isn’t reason enough to sit through the rest of this bland offering, though.
(Reviewed 8th September 2015)