Saturday my friend Stef asked me if I wanted to go shopping. I was in a ‘sure’ mood.
“Sure,” I said.
Saturday evening my friend Kat asked me if I wanted to go to a feminist porn film festival with her.
“Sure,” I said. Because frankly I was bored and it seemed like a more adventurous option than the eyebrow trimming session I had planned.
I’ve seen porn movies before but I’m usually yawning by the time the pizza guy rings the door bell. I’m the kind of gal that needs a substantial story line to go along with impending action sequence and up until I got the invitation to go to the festival, I kind of assumed most porn films are like this because they’re directed by men. According to Kat this festival was supposed to have films made by women for women so I was kind of interested to see the difference.
And let me tell you, there was one. The theater was located in a graffiti ridden artsy venue that had both proper cinema seats and couches. There was a range of audience members, 60% of which I suspected were lesbians. That made me rather defensive, as though the word ‘feminist’ was somehow high jacked by the gay community. My two heterosexual girlfriends and I were there to set that straight. I’m not sure what the single men were doing.
Then the movie began and it became clear that the director’s definition of women’s liberation is profoundly different from how I view it. Without being explicit, the movie was pitched as a documentary about unshackled female performance artists who travel around Europe debunking sexual taboos. It had the opposite effect. More like visual contraception. My husband will have to get used to the snowsuit I'll be wearing in bed for the next few weeks.
The women acted like toddlers without diapers. Sensuality and eroticism was replaced with painfully raw footage and staged scenes (in a documentary). The movie depended on it's shock value to keep the audience in their seats. I don't see how this was any different from the way a man would have made it....except perhaps the women would have had fuller breasts and less hair.
It was an interesting Saturday evening. At worst, I still have a unibrow. At best, it reaffirmed something I’ve known all along. Porn is just not my thing.