The F Word – Sex and Cinema

Even Spanish director Pedro Almodovar, who nowadays suffers from an awe of his own talent and whoÂ’s films get increasingly grandiloquent and self important, didnÂ’t take long to figure out the importance of slipping nudity into his films. Female nudity to please film critics and the male audience, and male nudity to please first of all himself and then the female viewers. In his write-up to Volver he praised Penelope CruzÂ’ cleavage as if it was one of the main characters. Now, why would a gay director spend thought on this if he doesnÂ’t get off on it? Because he knows that others do.

There is a hell of a lot sex in films, but it hardly ever achieves more than satisfying the most basic voyeuristic instincts and hardly ever catches the mystery and darkness of it.

Americans like to censor everything which is not a tamed depiction of the sexual act. And because they are prudish, sex is always portrayed as a clean, civilised thing. Something people do after theyÂ’ve been introduced to each other, or evil has been put to rest, or a car-crash.

In French films people go through a lot of talk before they have sex, as opposed to German films where they talk afterwards. In Italian cinema food definitely takes the place of sex, simply because the characters know that pasta carbonara is bound to be satisfying, while with sex you never know. Wong-Kar-WaiÂ’s characters prefer to have sex with absent people. In Russian films the characters often confuse violence with sex, or take it to be the same, which is why one of the lovers always ends up alone.

But wait, there is the famous love-making scene between Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie in DonÂ’t Look Now. Departing from the norm, this is a married couple doing it. How often do we see sex between married people in films? Therefore the average viewer must think that married people and people over the age of 28 donÂ’t have sex. And if it doesnÂ’t happen in film then it surely never happens in real life.

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