Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Lovelace (the movie)

I hadn't heard of the move Lovelace till I ran across a review in Verily, but based on the IMDb parent guide, I'm not sure I'll go see it. (Maybe I'll get the book.) My college media law textbook was quick to note that, while some people think the sex/porn industry is demeaning to women, it's actually great! because it's the only industry in which women consistently make more money than men.

That may be true - female bodies seem to be in greater demand than male ones; anyone glancing at the grocery store's checkout line magazines or watching any movie or TV show can attest to this. But no human being's body should be demanded. Whether or not Linda Marciano's experience was typical, I don't think we should be surprised to find this kind of abuse in an industry that sells images of women's bodies for sex and nothing else.

I'm not saying sex is bad. As a Catholic, I believe sex is good, when it is an expression of love, commitment, and self-gift between married couples, when it is freely given in that relationship of trust. But sex-to-the-exclusion-of-everything-else, sex-sans-relationship - that kind of sex is very bad.

Here's Mary Rose Somarriba's move review at Verily:

Lovelace isn’t the movie you expect. 
It’s the story of how Linda Marciano got her fame in America. It was 1972 and her name was in lights on the cinema marquees. She was the star of the X-rated movie Deep Throat
Cinema marquees, you ask—really? Yes, really. One could say it was a transitional cultural moment. Porn was crossing from the private sphere into the mainstream, and Linda was the center of attention. She was that mysterious woman with the surprising sense of humor and that secret talent. She had a prime spot in the limelight and on Hugh Hefner’s guest list. It was the time of free love, free expression, and free speech. She was America’s first porn star.
Except she wasn’t free. 
The film Lovelace (starring Amanda Seyfried and Peter Sarsgaard) expertly tells the two stories of Linda—the story you’ve heard and the story as it happened. Linda, whose real name isn’t Lovelace, was in fact coerced by her pimp and husband Chuck Traynor into performing in prostitution and pornography. Often forced to perform sexual acts at gunpoint, Linda sustained years of mental and physical abuse and lived in constant fear of his next violent beating or threat to her family. 
Perhaps most tragic of all is that when she finally escaped, no one believed her. Linda published her biography Ordeal in 1980, bringing her story to the public. But, with the rare exception of praise from such anti-porn feminists as Gloria Steinem and Andrea Dworkin, the book was largely unread and forgotten. Lovelace struggled to make ends meet for the rest of her life until 2002 when she died in a car accident at the age of 53.
Read the rest of her review here!


  1. This makes me want to read her biography, but I probably won't see the movie, either. It would be too sad.

  2. Wow. I do want to read the book now.


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