The coronavirus pandemic has solidified Netflix’s standing as America’s prime supply of at-home leisure due to buzzy hits like Tiger Kingand The Kissing Sales space franchise. However the streaming large is at present experiencing critical on-line backlash for offering a platform for the controversial French movie, Cuties, about an 11-year-old Senegalese lady residing in Paris who joins an all-girl dance group. Final month, Netflix apologized after a poster selling the film was accused of sexualizing its younger solid. Since Cuties premiered on Wednesday, a #CancelNetflix marketing campaign has been trending on Twitter, with some equating the approaching of age movie to pedophilia.


The debut function of French author/director Maïmouna Doucouré — who was born in Paris to Senegalese immigrants — Cuties debuted to nice acclaim at this yr’s Sundance Movie Competition, the place it received the Directing Jury Award. “Cuties is the story of an 11-year-old lady who’s looking for herself,” the filmmaker remarked in a video interview featured on the Netflix Movie Membership YouTube web page. “She’s navigating between two fashions of femininity: one represents her mom’s conventional origins. And the opposite is a bunch of younger ladies known as Cuties.”

Doucouré goes onto clarify that she was impressed to jot down the movie after seeing an 11-year-old dance troupe that modeled their routines after extra grownup music movies. “I used to be stunned due to their age,” she notes, including she met with lots of of pre-teen ladies about rising up within the social media age. “Our ladies see that the extra a lady is overly sexualized on social media, the extra she is profitable. And the kids simply imitate what they see, making an attempt to attain the identical outcome with out understanding the that means. And yeah, it’s harmful.”

Talking of harmful, Doucouré just lately informed Deadline that she had acquired loss of life threats after the Netflix poster debacle, and acquired a private apology from Ted Sarandos. “I acquired quite a few assaults on my character from individuals who had not seen the movie, who thought I used to be really making a movie that was apologetic about hyper-sexualization of youngsters.”

In line with its maker, Cuties was at first meant to assist younger ladies — and their mother and father — navigate the tough transition from into maturity. And movie critics have largely been moved by her imaginative and prescient. “Cuties will not be a blunt screed or a finger-wagging cautionary story in both path,” writes Vulture’s Bilge Ebiri in his rave evaluate, which additionally pushes again in opposition to the concept that Doucouré is sexualizing the solid. “The Cuties are terrific dancers, however their act is ridiculous given their age,” he writes. “They usually don’t really know something concerning the methods of adults — their infantile banter reveals they don’t know how intercourse works, and a scene the place one among them finds a used condom, blows it up, and pretends it’s a breast implant ends in chaotic, cringeworthy hijinks.”

However the #CancelNetflix crowd hasn’t been received over by the constructive evaluations. On Rotten Tomatoes, outraged commentators have dragged the movie’s Viewers Rating down to five %, whereas the important consensus sits at 90 %.


Regardless of the web marketing campaign, Netflix hasn’t introduced any plans to take away Cuties from its library. And Doucouré hopes that one thing constructive comes out of the movie’s troubled U.S. launch. “I really hope that those that haven’t seen it, will see it, and I can’t wait to see their response,” she informed Deadline. “Hopefully they are going to perceive that we’re really on the identical aspect of this battle. If we be a part of forces, we might make a giant change on this world that hyper-sexualizes kids.”

Cuties is at present streaming on Netflix

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