Thanks for Sharing has the most difficult of tasks and actually manages to handle it with a certain amount of grace. The film from writer-director Stuart Blumberg (The Kids Are All Right) is an ensemble comedy with heaps of drama about a sex addiction group and their journey through sobriety and its many pratfalls.
The Thanks for Sharing cast is top notch. But, the movie’s lead is truly Mark Ruffalo (The Avengers). We learn that he has been sober for five years and that when he begins a relationship with Gwyneth Paltrow, he is not too eager to return to that “dark place.” That’s just one aspect of the film that is truly interesting. How does one return to the dating world while a sex addict? As the Thanks for Sharing trailer shows, it is not easy. But, then again, our culture’s way of life cannot be easy for those afflicted with this disease.
Blumberg does an impeccable job showcasing that as a simple walk down the street can set one off. The Victoria’s Secret ads, half-dressed mannequins in store windows and even the close proximity of people together on the subway are all triggers that can return one to the depths of addiction.
Ruffalo and Paltrow are just one facet of this ensemble. Josh Gad (Jobs, The Internship) is astounding as a man who is in a sex addiction support group because of a court mandate. We don’t know exactly why, but that is not necessary. The audience is simply shown why by something he does at his job as an emergency room doctor. He’s good at his job, but that does not mean he will be able to keep it due to his addiction.
Gad’s character becomes fast friends with one of the few females in his support group, played by Alecia Moore (otherwise known as Pink). The two of them possess a friendly chemistry that is heartwarming and oftentimes hilarious. Honestly, we would love to see these two together in other films in the future!
Then there is the Tim Robbins-led storyline. He’s a father who has not exactly been there for his child (Almost Famous star Patrick Fugit). He and his wife have managed to not only make it through his sex addiction, but also his alcohol addiction. Robbins is somewhat of an “expert” and serves as a sponsor and mentor to many. We adore Robbins and Fugit is astounding in the role of the neglected and fellow addict son. But, it may be one storyline too many with this element that takes a bit of weight away from the rest of the story.
But, what Thanks for Sharing should be given major kudos for is how it handles the delicate and rarely pursued subject onscreen of sex addiction. There are dark moments. There are light moments. But, then again… that is life. And for someone grappling with any kind of addiction, our Thanks for Sharing review finds that has to ring true.