No matter how advanced and modernized we are becoming as time moves by us, there are certain boundaries that are never to be crossed. Netflix might still need to understand that. The new Netflix title “Cuties” faces a massive backlash upon its release. The streaming giant purchased the French free Netflix movie rights that depict young girls from ages 12-14 in explicit and highly provocative roles. The movie’s theme is not to erotic underage girls, but the execution is just what makes it do that exactly. People are angry, and you can see trending tweets about boycotting the oldest streaming service in the US (#CancelNetflix). Whether the company will get a terrible hit from this incident is beside the point. It is one of those situations where we must think about creative freedom’s boundaries, is it always good? Is it a gray area where we should be ready to accept anything? Are we reflecting the reality, or the reality is an influence of what goes on the screen? The News Engine will explore these questions in this article.
Cuties Movie Description
“Cuties” is the new Netflix release that is facing a lot of face of backlash. The movie is about an 11-year old girl born in a conservative family. Being restricted by her family traditions, the girl finally learns to let herself evolve upon meeting a free-spirit dance crew. The trailer of the film has become one of the most disliked videos on YouTube. It shows young lead actress and other underage cast members in a erotic manner. The trailer also shows the girl’s struggle with her conservative family traditions. Thus, the conflict between her dreams and her community becomes the driving plot of the film. The imagery in the trailer has some venereal elements as well due to which people heavily criticized it in the comments.
“Cuties” is not produced by Netflix. It is a French film that was first premiered at the Sundance event in 2019. Maïmouna Doucouré is the French filmmaker at the helm of this project. It is also noteworthy that the movie won World Cinema Dramatic Directing Award at Sundance. Doucouré was inspired to direct this full-length film, followed by the popularity of her short film “Maman(s)” that explored similar themes. Maman(s) also won at Sundance in 2016 for Best Short Film International Fiction Jury. It likely encouraged the French director to explore further the themes of the short film
Cause of Controversy
In a statement released on Thursday by Conservative Advocacy Group Parents Television Council, the TV-MA movie erectic children.
Erotic underage girls is the leading cause of controversy for “Cuties.” The imagery used in the film has revealing costumes; the dialogues and situations created in the movie are explicit for the wider audience. The movie, either intentionally or unintentionally, makes the young female cast members erotic, and people worldwide are beyond upset at this. More importantly, they are shocked that Netflix has greenlit the movie’s release even amongst all the hate. When early posters for Cuties came out, it ignited a similar reaction from viewers. As a response, Netflix publically apologized in a statement admitting that the imagery was not OK and how it was not representative of the actual film. They then made changes to the promotional material. However, the final release still contains all the sensual explicit content. The fact that the streaming company overlooked the initial response and went on with the release is indicative of how media giants are ready to stoop to all kinds of lows for views. The movie will likely get more viewership out of shock-value, and Netflix knows it very well. It is certainly profitable for them but at what cost?
Themes of the Movie
Note that the theme of the movie could have actually been highly applauded if things were any different. It aims at a realistic portrayal of how the pop-culture is carnal our kids and robbing them of their childhood innocence at young ages. But the way “Cuties” goes about it is incredibly problematic. Creative freedom in media has brought us a variety of art that keeps us pushing towards new things. It should be thought-provoking by either highlighting the existing loopholes in our cultures; it should also be responsibly smart to work around those themes. Yes, there are ugly realities around us, but a viewer does not always want to experience an on-the-nose depiction of it. Crafting something with such care is not easy, yet it is where the creator’s skills genuinely shine.
PTC statement also added that children were trained for dance routines that are erotic, they have been given lines that include foul language, and there is a scene where the underage lead girl pulls down her underwear to get a snap of her genitals. She also seduces a family member to get away from the consequences of stealing his phone.
Cancel Netflix Twitter
Mary Margaret Olohan is a conservative publication reporter; she tweeted a scene from “Cuties” in which the young girls are performing a rough explicit dance routine in front of a crowd. She criticized Netflix for being OK with releasing this film and indicated the current standing of our culture. Twitter soon got filled with #CancelNetflix as people posted tons of criticism for the Netflix title in their posts. The hate and backlash have grown to the point that a petition against Netflix went live on Change.org to cancel Netflix’s subscription over exploiting children creating a disturbing vibe with its content. There are 600,000 signers on this petition at the time this article was written.
These moments prove the existence of boundaries, even in creative freedom. Everyone is allowed to think and express their perspective to the world; it is our right. But we must be vigilant in the way we choose to do it. If it will create further harm and foul, it is not worth bringing into the world. #CancelNetflix might not surpass corporate greed, but it will hopefully act as a reminder that we must look at all the possible consequences of a creative choice.