First off, the real Linda Lovelace changed her story a bunch of times throughout her life (including the FOUR autobiographies she wrote): which one are we to believe? Porn star Linda? Born again Christian Linda? Feminist Linda? Aging and short of cash Linda? The problem with this movie is it treats even the most bizarre tales spun by Lovelace as the God's own truth, even though everyone else involved in any of the porn productions she was involved in refute just about all of it.
Secondly, Amanda Seyfried is way too pretty and childlike to play Lovelace with any kind of credibility. The real Linda Lovelace always bordered on the creepy, haggard and slightly cross-eyed, and it was only her (then) highly unusual ability to 'deep throat' that she had going for her - at least the film got that part right.
Her endless self-victimizing tales, such as her porn shoots being filmed with a gun LITERALLY pressed to her head, and her becoming the most famous porn star in the world only out of fear that her family might be murdered(?), run contrary to the reports of almost everyone else she worked with, who considered this woman - who'd previously had sex with a dog on camera (oh yes, THAT wasn't mentioned in the film, was it?)- to be an inveterate liar and a 'sexual super-freak'. In her private life too, every time any of her apparently happy marriages ended, she played the victim all over again and alleged abuse from pretty much every man she was ever involved with right up until the end of her life - including Larry Marchiano, her 'happy ending' at the end of this film.
Lovelace was a very sad character wanting more than anything approval, sympathy and attention and apparently just said whatever she thought a 'good girl' should say in whatever circles she moved. As her fellow adult actress Gloria Leonard said, "This was a woman who never took responsibility for her own choices made, but instead blamed everything that happened to her in her life on porn." The story of her need to present herself in such a way, why she did it and the fall-out such behaviour caused to everyone else around her would have made a far better film.
I liked the 70s period detail, and there are some funny lines from Boardwalk Empire's Bobby Cannavale and Hank Azaria, but they're way out of place in such an oppressive, lurid nightmare fantasy depicting all the Boogie Nights-style shenanigans as simply abuse. By swallowing every bizarre allegation from this one deeply unreliable source and making her story exclusively one of victimhood we are infantilizing a grown woman, treating her even after death as a sexless child who never grew up and I found this deeply unpleasant to have to sit through.
Most of all I found it insulting to be presented with the self-pitying excuses of a pathological liar depicted as objective reality. There was absolutely no point to this movie being made, it says nothing of any value and doesn't even entertain. It was a waste of everyone's time and money, including mine.
Biography / Drama
Biography / Drama
The story of Linda Lovelace, who is used and abused by the porn industry at the behest of her coercive husband, before taking control of her life.
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October 13, 2013 at 8:54 am