My Breast (1994) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

My Breast is a made-for-TV movie about a single, fortyish journalist who discovers a lump in her breast. It basically serves the function of presenting the necessary medical facts to its female audience, while simultaneously presenting an examination of how the diagnosis and treatment affect the patient's concept of herself, as well as her relationships with those around her.

The cut-and-dried information about medical procedures is interwoven with a story about the impact of the diagnosis upon her relationship with her significant other. Her potentially fatal encounter with cancer casts an intense light on their affair, and this magnification process ultimately changes her perception of the balance between his flaws and his strengths. His tendency toward insensitivity seemed more insignificant in less stressful circumstances, when her own neediness caused her to overlook his flaws, but the same insensitivity in the face of a life-threatening crisis finally pushes her to move on romantically.

The usual Lifetime Movie, although it actually aired on CBS, and the bare breast was highly controversial at the time.

It's a true story. The subject of the story is Joyce Wadler, who is probably the closest thing the New York Times ever had to a gossip columnist. Here's a recent Salon article about her column. This movie is based upon her own autobiographical account of that crisis in her life, which began as a 1992 article in New York Magazine and was later expanded to a full-length book. Wadler herself adapted the book into a screenplay for this movie.

The reviews of the book say that it is filled with a sardonic sense of humor, but I guess Wadler set that aside to deliver a product targeted at her Lifetime audience. She made the screenplay treatment clinical and chose to portray herself as a bland person. It's a shame because,   from what little I know of her, she is quite different from the straight-arrow portrayed here. She is apparently a colorful eccentric in dress and style. She once worked at Screw Magazine, for heaven's sake! According to a recent New York Observer article, she sashays around town with a leopard print umbrella and used the royalties from the printed version of My Breast to buy herself an expensive fur and flaunt it in politically-correct circles.

If My Breast had been made about the colorful Edith Prickly character profiled in the Observer and if it were really filled with the sardonic humor mentioned in the book's reviews, it might actually be worth watching as a complex drama. As it is, it's a soap opera which could also be used as a teaching aid to enrich high school health classes.



  • no features of any kind
  • no widescreen (it was a basic cable movie)



Meredith Baxter shows her enormous left breast during a medical examination.

Book DVD

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The People Vote ...

The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics, or a C- from our system. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or a D on our scale. (Possibly even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. (C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by genre fans, while C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie although genre addicts find it watchable). D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well. Any film rated C- or better is recommended for fans of that type of film. Any film rated B- or better is recommended for just about anyone. We don't score films below C- that often, because we like movies and we think that most of them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below C-.

Based on this description, it's a C-. Sincere and heartfelt, but more of an educational film than an a drama or an entertainment. Most men will find it boring in the extreme, but it may interest women.

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