By Phil Hall | September 9, 2004

“Testosterone” is a foolish little movie about Dean (David Sutcliffe), a Los Angeles comic book artist whose Argentine lover Pablo (Antonio Sabato Jr.) abruptly leaves him and returns to Buenos Aires. Dean impulsively follows Pablo to Buenos Aires, but Dean’s inability to speak Spanish and his talent for running into less-than-helpful people frustrates his attempts at a reunion with Pablo. After being played for a fool in an elaborate masquerade by Pablo’s friends and family, Dean gets hold of a gun and a machete and decides to teach Pablo a lethal lesson.

“Testosterone” never quite clicks, primarily because the central male characters are badly miscast. Sutcliffe goes through the film with the same smirking, happy-go-lucky demeanor. Even when he is supposedly unhinged with revenge, he comes across with as much fury as Bob Saget introducing another wave of funny home videos. As the object of his affection, Sabato is a vapid and unlikeable presence. It is impossible to comprehend how anyone could become so wildly obsessed with such a dullard. Their love scenes are among the least erotic ever staged for a camera.

The saving grace to this film is a trio of incredible women who provide much needed humor and glamour. As Pablo’s virago of a mother, Sonia Braga hams it up with melodramatic overkill. Shoehorned into wonderfully tacky dresses and wearing a wig and false eyelashes that seemed to have belonged to Eartha Kitt’s Catwoman, Braga is a sight for sore eyes and a balm for the funnybone. Jennifer Coolidge is equally delightful as Dean’s earthy, vulgar agent. Scatalogical language comes across like a comic dream with her brilliantly coarse line readings.

Then there’s Celina Font as the mysterious café owner who may or may not be assisting Dean in his search for Pablo. Font is the most beautiful woman I’ve seen on the big screen in ages. Even when she is playing the foil for the gay angst around her, she dominates the proceedings with her grace and sensual presence. (Message to Hollywood: dump Penelope Cruz and get Celina Font as your new Latin sensation ASAP!)

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