Rome fest features film on invention of vibrator

October 28, 2011 - 2:30 PM
Italy Rome Film Festival

US actress Maggie Gyllenhaal, left, smiles as she looks at US film director Tanya Wexler, center, on her tiptoes, and British actor Rupert Everett, lowering, during the photo call of the movie

ROME (AP) — U.S. director Tanya Wexler says her comedy "Hysteria," about the Victorian-era invention of the vibrator, is all about empowering women.

Wexler presented "Hysteria," starring Maggie Gyllenhaal and Rupert Everett, at the Rome Film Festival Friday. It's one of 15 films competing for the top prize at the festival running through Nov. 4.

In it, one woman complains she's always hungry, another is anxious, a third has bouts of crying. They pour their problems out to Dr. Joseph Mortimer Granville, a doctor in 1880s London who along with a hysteria specialist and an inventor friend develop the cure for what ails them.

Wexler told reporters the point of "Hysteria" was to have a bit of fun. She says: "We're supposed to be able to enjoy the enjoyable parts of life."