Ken Tucker
July 16, 1993 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The week’s best cast in the week’s biggest disappointment, sexual healing (Showtime, July 18, 10-10:40 p.m.) stars Helen Hunt (Mad About You) as a bored wife and mother married to a moody wimp played by Seinfeld’s Jason Alexander (in a flagrantly bad wig, no less). Anthony Edwards (Northern Exposure) is a lonely single guy who decides to use a telephone dating service that matches him up with Hunt, who is looking to spice up her life. During much of Sexual Healing, the two never see each other but conduct an affair over the phone, complete with verbal seductions that are so earnest and unerotic one feels rather embarrassed for these poor dull people. The excellent Mare Winningham, who these days tends to bury her talents in network TV movies, has a far too small role as Edwards’ friend. The only reason I can imagine these good actors all agreed to appear in this tripe is that Sexual Healing must have started out as something else-sexy, or funny, or tragic, or something. Healing has been nobly made: The cast worked for free, and Showtime is donating $25,000 to the Minority AIDS Project. It’s too bad that, at a vague 40 minutes, the movie is a wispy little nothing. D

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