A Tinder-immersed friend once told me, sadly, that he would eagerly trade all of his higher-than-average bodycount to experience just one loving relationship. I honestly didn’t feel much pity for him. But I can sense something of the ache he was trying to communicate in Ain’t No Cure for Love: America, a deadpan short comedy in which the obsessive pursuit of sex resembles any other kind of collecting, like baseball cards or stamps.

It stars writer-director Matthew Danger Lippman alongside Film Stage Managing Editor (and my real-life buddy) Nick Newman, whose screen presence can only be compared to that of a young Alain Delon. Over drinks at a bar in Chicago, Andrew (Lippman) tells Rich (Newman) of his desire hook up with a different woman from every state in the union without travelling beyond the borders of Illinois. The plan is in its infancy––he only has 14 states notched on his bedpost, mostly the big ones––and is already in crisis after he has just wasted an evening with a second woman from Texas.

Questions arise. Is this ambitious sex project Andrew’s last shot at accomplishing something great? How likely is it that he’ll find a willing partner from Alaska without making a road trip? If multiple women from the same state, how feasible would it be to reorient the project to districts? Most importantly: isn’t sex becoming a little secondary to a separate fixation on numbers and statistics?

The title comes, of course, from that melancholy lothario Leonard Cohen. The sort of sorrow he conveyed through his rumbling voice and earnest poetry is here communicated more obliquely with the candlelit atmosphere (courtesy Hannah Ha Ha co-director Jordan Tetewsky) and pokerfaced humor of Lippman’s script. It’s a subtly flavorful Valentine’s treat recommended to anyone experiencing numbness from swiping past all those anonymous faces on your app of choice.

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