5 posts categorized "porn"

June 06, 2015

HOT GIRLS WANTED

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HotgirlswantedJill Baure and Ronna Gradus’s anti-porn documentary demystifies some parts of the thriving Internet sex industry, especially its effects upon the multitudes of young women who churn through its constantly revolving doors.

The sexual development of teens has always kept up with porn; the proliferation of Internet sex has accelerated those rites of passage. Gone are days of kids having to pour over “The Joy of Sex” to get a vague idea of how people get off. Now that young people are easily able to explore cutting-edge sexual desires (in a social media-observed world), it’s a standard part of the transition into adulthood for this and future generations. This trend is not going away, if anything, it’s increasing.

Hot-Girls-Wanted2Riley is a 23-year-old Tampa “talent agent” (and sometime “talent”). He posts a “Hot Girls Wanted” ad on Craigslist that racks up numerous replies from just-turned-18 girls chomping at the bit to get away from their parents and declare their independence.

The self-described wealthy Riley has a constant bevvy of would-be porn stars staying with him at his, let’s just say, sparsely appointed house. He keeps a dog and a puppy to keep the girls happy. Riley comes off like a frat boy pimp. His charges’ suitcases explode beside mattresses on Riley’s floor in a scattered array of shoes, make-up and “cute tops.”

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This young entrepreneur’s steady stream of nubile sex performers each receives a psychologically and physically exacting crash course in the brutal reality of male exploiters who lay in wait for them anywhere they go in the world. You’d be pressed to imagine a tougher hard-knocks indoctrination program into capitalist society. Perhaps that’s as it should be for all of us.

HGWPart of the film’s unintended subtext deals with porn as a rebellious right-of-passage for girls (like girl-next-door-type Tressa — a.k.a. Stella May) to go through en masse. Social media has bred a competitive hunger for popularity and fame to which every porn actress on display aspires and claws at every opportunity.

This ordeal does have a maturing effect. In only a month or two, most of these headstrong girls will be finished with the short work-cycle of Internet porn.

Tressa’s supportive Midwest family suffers their daughter’s indiscretions with predictable worry and concern. Her doting boyfriend Kendall comes through for Tressa like a champ. Forget about preconceived notions of porn stars coming from dysfunctional families. Internet porn attracts girls from all walks of life.

Hot-girls-wanted-The porn-star dream is alive and well in economically ravaged America. The insatiable demand for Internet porn means that a girl who turned 18 last week, making $15 an hour in her hometown, can buy a plane ticket to Florida and start filming three to five porn videos a week. Each one pays between $800 and $1000, a fee that covers such outré sex acts as “facial abuse” and “vomiting.”

All these recent past years of America’s open policy of extreme (police and military) torture appear to have pushed sexual fads in the country toward kinks previously considered bizarre.

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“Thirty percent of all data transferred across the Internet is porn.” Of that content, “nearly 40 percent depicts violence against women.” That awful truth reflects of epochs of racism, sexism, and brutal humiliation that came before. A film such as “Hot Girls Wanted” helps us face who and what we are head-on. The situation boils down to simple economic reality: any douche with $800 and a video camera can hire a girl to let him abuse her sexually for eternal public display.

Ashley Knoxx gets her place as a current sex-performer identifier. Newbie porn actress Ava Kelly responds to watching Knoxx’s facial abuse video on Riley's cell phone.

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“She wants to get notoriety and not be scarred. Not everyone can come back from that.” “She was one of the girls that didn’t know what she was getting herself into.”

If nothing else, “Hot Girls Wanted” is instructional on a real-world level about the risks and minimal rewards of Internet porn.

Not Rated. 84 mins.

3 Stars

Cozy Cole

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March 08, 2014

NYMPH()MANIAC: VOLUME I

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ColeSmithey.com Just as with Harvey Weinstein’s famous mistake of splitting Quentin Tarantino’s “Kill Bill” into two parts, the producers of Lars von Trier’s 240 minute film have seen fit to split it in two, rather than deliver the movie as the filmmaker intended. Big mistake.

The result is exactly what you would expect, that of watching half of a movie. It is not a fair way for an audience to screen the film, much less an acceptable format for a critic to judge and contextualize it by. To make matters worse, there will also be a 5.5 hour director’s cut that will demand interested viewers cover old ground if they are invested enough to want to see von Trier’s entire film. Meh. Pshaw. 

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Volume I establishes the character of Joe (Charlotte Gainsbourg), a self-hating nymphomaniac rescued from the cold ground of a brick-wall-surrounded courtyard by Seligman (Stellan Skarsgård), a thematically-charged character whose sole purpose — in Volume I at least — is as a human sounding-board and harmonizing influence for Joe's litany of sexual transgressions.

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Seligman is a lonely guy, a bit too pleased to have in his company a piece of female damaged-goods who wants nothing more than to spill the beans about her life of wild and naughty sexual diversions — indeed her sexual experiences are many and varied. Joe is one carnally voracious girl. The titillation dial is stuck on ten.

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The film opens on a black screen. Water tinkles. The viewer is left to imagine its source. Is someone taking a leak? No. Snow is falling, and melted ice drips down a tin drain.

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A passed-out Joe lies bloodied on the pavement of a well-concealed courtyard outside of Seligman's apartment. Seligman awakens her. He offers to call an ambulance or the police. Joe threatens to run off if he does. It’s tea that she wants. He invites her inside his sparsely appointed place and puts her in bed. The defenseless Joe begins to recount her sexually adventurous life that led up to her present wounded condition — possibly from some act of revenge or semi-public bit of BDSM.

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Seligman not only isn’t judgmental about Joe's checkered past, he finds all sorts of reference points from his own life — related to things such as fly-fishing. He sees similes in her troubled tale of bedding as many as ten men per day. Seligman is a dilettante counselor who is patient, and effete enough to listen to Joe’s outrageously erotic stories without becoming visually aroused or making a pass that would surely be easily received.

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Not all of Joe’s flashbacks are sexual. She fondly remembers walking though a winter forest with her doting father (Christian Slater). Joe’s erotic journey is broken into chapters — four for each film. “The Compleat Angler” is the first section. Joe recounts playing a sexual conquest game with her best friend, in which the two teenage girls would compete for a bag of candies by seeing how many men they could seduce during a train ride. Joe gets extra points if she can extract a load from a married man on his way to impregnate his ovulating wife. His cock does indeed find its way into Joe’s hungry mouth. No surprise how that scene ends.

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Joe’s flashback description of losing her virginity — at her own request — to Jerôme (Shia LaBeouf), a local London boy with a moped, brings up the fact that he "humped her three times in the front, and five times in the back." Seligman identifies Joe’s “most humiliating numbers” as following a Fibonacci series. Von Trier steals a page from Peter Greenaway when he superimposes graphic onscreen sub-titles and diagrams of the way Fibonacci numbers are used. Referenced is the way they approximate the natural order of a seashell. The numbers themselves flash on the screen as Jerôme pumps away at a younger version of Joe (played by a fearless Stacy Martin).

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As Joe’s personal tales of knee-jerk seductions go on, the sex scenes become gradually more graphic, and the sideline humor more sly. During the film’s third chapter “Mrs. H,” Uma Thurman plays the vengeful and curious wife of the man who has left her in order to be with Joe. Neither Mr. nor Mrs. H has any idea that they are interrupting a busy evening of carefully timed assignations that Joe has planned with various men.

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Nymph()maniac is a sly piece of anti-slut-shaming cinema aimed at demystifying female carnal desire. It is a character-study of an ostensibly rare type of sexually ravenous woman. Von Trier creates a new breed of social satire that is equally daring and tame. While the film is fiercely pornographic, it does not represent pornography per se.

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“Love is the secret ingredient” that Joe denies and yet secretly seeks. Her loss of the ability to orgasm coincides with her father’s imminent death. Volume II promises to follow Joe’s experimentation into fetishized BDSM. 

To be continued...

Not Rated. 117 mins.

4 Stars

Cozy Cole

Cole Smithey on Patreon

August 06, 2013

LOVELACE

Welcome!

Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.ColeSmithey.comThis ad-free website is dedicated to Agnès Varda and to Luis Buñuel. Punk heart still beating.

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Porn’s Pimping Price
Linda Boreman’s Story Gets a Muted Treatment

ColeSmithey.com“Lovelace” [mostly] succeeds as a brief biopic of Linda Boreman, a middle-class girl from Florida who became a household name – via her porn appellation “Linda Lovelace” – for which she made only one film, “Deep Throat” (1972).

Amanda Seyfried (“Mamma Mia!”) cuts her teeth on a weighty role that gives her ample room to fill her range as an actress. Seyfried conveys her flawed character’s quicksilver transition from naif to world-weary victim with an ideal balance of homely promise and make-up-endowed beauty.

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Watergate-era 1972 finds 19-year-old Linda in the backyard of her conservative parents’ house working on her tan with her best friend – much to the disgust of her strict mom (played by an unrecognizable Sharon Stone). Linda’s roller-rink hot-pants exhibition attracts Chuck Traynor (Peter Sarsgaard), a master manipulator of young women. Traynor’s hippie disguise and stoner slang charms Linda into a relationship built more on a pimp/prostitute template than on any evaporating illusion of romantic love.

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Sarsgaard’s smallish stature and slow-burn temper don’t measure up to demands of the roll. He’s too comfortable. When he loses his temper with Linda, there isn’t enough ferocity. Sarsgaard is too puckish. Although we never see it, Chuck supposedly runs a stripper bar. Whether or not he has a steady job is beside the point; Chuck is a smooth-talker with a wad of cash and a hot sports car – a con man on the make. When they’re alone, Chuck and Linda play out Chuck’s sex fantasies. Linda needs training in the oral-sex department, and proves to be an enthusiastic student of the art — although no pornographic proof is offered.

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Chuck’s New York City mob connections go all in on financing “Deep Throat” after watching Linda performing her specialty on Chuck in a homemade audition reel. Porn director Gerard Damiano (Hank Azaria) and producer Butchie Peranio (Bobby Cannavale) cobble together a high-concept script driven by the conceit that the impetus for their leading character’s oral insatiability lies in the birth-defect clitoris that rests at the back of her throat. Azaria and Cannavale are too jokey to be believable in their mobster roles. You half expect them to break into a comic routine at any moment.

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While “Lovelace” hints at the cataclysmic cultural phenomenon that “Deep Throat” created in America, the story rests on Linda’s increasingly abusive relationship with the hot-tempered Chuck Traynor, whose “manager” credentials do little to insure even a small percentage of the veritable Niagara of cash that “Deep Throat” generated. For a film about the first super-porn-star, “Lovelace” is remarkably shy about its representational sex scenes. It is a profound mistake.

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Duo-directors Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman dodge using clips from the actual film – perhaps due to licensing issues. The brief reenactments on display do little to disclose what it was about “Deep Throat” that opened the floodgates for the porn industry during an era of hedonistic sexual liberation, insurgent feminism, and trenchant political corruption – which arrived ironically and not-so-coincidentally via an anonymous whistleblower known as “Deep Throat.”

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Linda Boreman’s story is an American Mafia story as much as it is a personal tragedy for a woman who was barely able to escape the clutches of a small-time pimp who got lucky, if not rich, on her back.

Rated R. 92 mins.

3 Stars

Cozy Cole

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