In the 1880s, women in their masses were being treated for what the medical profession claimed was hysteria. Infact there were doctors whose entire practice was dedicated to ‘relieving’ these women of their hysteria.
Starring Hugh Dancy as Dr. Mortimer Granville, Johnathan Pryce as Dr. Robert Dalrymple, Rupert Evertt as Lord Edmund St. John-Smythe and Maggie Gyllenhaal as Charlotte Dalrymple, Hysteria is very much a romantic, comedy, period piece movie. As enjoyable as Dancy and Pryce are to watch, Evertt as the somewhat made inventor steals every scene he is in, with the exception of any scene with Maggie Gyllenhaal.
Ms Gyllenhaal is a uncommon beauty that challenges the eyes to look away, yet she is not simply just a thing of beauty. A wonderful actress as well, whose works have varied from large productions to smaller ones, such as Hysteria, each one benefiting from Mr Gyllenhaal‘s appearance.
The whole plot surrounds the invention of the first personal massager for women and has many laughs along the way from hand to hand held. It is a story that is told without smut, graphic detail, and with the very minimum of female flesh exposed. If it wasn’t for the subject matter, you could show this to kids. It is a very clean, dirty movie.
Hysteria is a small movie that concentrates on the invention of the most popular sex toy for women, while keep in view how society viewed women and how that was about to change. And as with any movie with such subject matter, yes there is a happy ending.