Posted by: greercn | August 23, 2013

Lovelace

Pornography presents so many problems to feminists. I accept that the objectifying of woman is a very bad thing, but I feel pulled by an almost equal urge to fight censorship.

I remember all the palaver over the release of “Deep Throat” the first time around. I confess I never saw the film. It featured that form of sex that former US President Bill Clinton describes as “not having sexual relations” and – oh, just look it up. This is a movie review blog and not an educational website.

Linda Lovelace became a porn star and, then, a celebrity. Many years later, she wrote a book called “Ordeal” in which she wrote about the violence and abuse she had suffered during her movie career.

Much of it was because of her husband, Chuck Trayner. If you believe in conjoined souls – not sure I do – they died young and three months apart in real life.

“Lovelace” is two separate movies, brought to you by the team that made the documentary “The Times of Harvey Milk”.

The first half of “Lovelace” features the glorification of the southern Florida lifestyle, complete with reflective tanning aids and seriously bad facial hair.

Then, 45 minutes in, we segue to the polygraph test on Lovelace when she wrote “Ordeal” and the film becomes a much uglier and more depressing tale of domestic violence and those who profit from Lovelace.

All in all, it’s worth seeing but depressing. I feel it would have been massively improved by the two halves being reversed. Leave us feeling joyful. Is that too much to ask? (Yes, the film team responded).

It was a free preview for members of the Stratford East Picturehouse and it was packed. Everyone else thought it was a terrific film and very entertaining.

It left me musing on the nature of censorship and pornography. I don’t think I ever knew that Lovelace was six years younger than me when she died in a car accident.

Amanda Seyfried is marvellous as Linda and Peter Sarsgaard and Sharon Stone lead a brilliant cast. Juno Temple, James Franco, Adam Brody, Hank Azaria, Chris Noth and Bobby Cannavale are all terrific.

Maybe I need to see that film. I am no prude, but I find that notion a little icky.

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