Nic (Julian Sands) is a film director with marital problems at home and other problems on set. He charts his development from childhood to the point of trying to make his film in the Tunisian desert. He also becomes involved with twins (both played by Saffron Burrows). The on-set problems begin to mount, placing the production (and possibly the people themselves) in danger.

It`s a fascinating failure.

It`s not often that a mainstream filmmaker attempts something borderline experimental, but that`s what Mike Figgis has tackled - with very mixed results - in The Loss of Sexual Innocence, which is a genuine oddity.

There are two main strands to the film. One is the sexual life of Nic, played as an adult by Julian Sands. He`s first seen as a child rapt by his first experience of sex; as a teenager, in the film`s best sequence, he attempts to have sex with his girlfriend on the lounge-room floor; as an adult, he finds himself trapped in a stale marriage; as a philanderer, making a documentary film in North Africa, he becomes involved with a beautiful woman (Saffron Burrows) with unexpected results..... These fragments of a life are intercut with some terribly banal footage involving a naked Adam and Eve who emerge from the primeval swamp into modern society.

The Loss of Sexual Innocence is often great to look at, and there are some intriguing elements, but it doesn`t add up to very much - in fact, it seems like a bit of a muddle. Obviously a personal project from the undeniably talented Figgis, it`s a fascinating failure.