The Lady Garden

Tea and Strumpets

Too Much Pussy

Thanks to a lovely friend, I was able to go and see the film for myself this week. And if you’re in Wellington, you should go and see it on Saturday.

I don’t want to be an unpaid advertisement for Outtakes, but you guys, they have some amazing films showing, and if you can, you should get along*.

I’m not going to say that TMP wasn’t confronting in parts. That I didn’t raise my eyebrows a couple of times. (Though not as much as my companion’s neighbour who spent the whole film giggling nervously, and shaking her head.) I didn’t find it as…arousing….as Dee, but that may be because I’m not, generally, into women**.

But, if you want to understand sex-positive feminism, about the issues we talk about on this very site, you should see it. Because there’s something incredibly powerful about watching a bunch of women who are, simply put, not ashamed.

Because they’re not. They talk about their sexuality frankly. They’re not ashamed of their desires, of their bodies, of the fact they are sex-workers. They talk about, as feminists, not feeling guilty about their fantasies. About porn as something to masturbate to, not to be analysed. (Though of course, you can do both.) About the need to stop their own negative self-talk. Embracing the word slut, and the attitude they believe goes with it.

One thing that resonated with me, is the idea that they’ve taken the feminist and queer theory, and put it into place in their lives, and now they’re the ones on the frontline of the battle, and in turn, creating their own theory. It made me think of this:

Unlike protests put on by mainstream national women’s organizations, which are carefully planned and fundraised for — even the signs are bulk-printed ahead of time — SlutWalks have cropped up organically, in city after city, fueled by the raw emotional and political energy of young women. And that’s the real reason SlutWalks have struck me as the future of feminism. Not because an entire generation of women will organize under the word “slut” or because these marches will completely eradicate the damaging tendency of law enforcement and the media to blame sexual assault victims (though I think they’ll certainly put a dent in it). But the success of SlutWalks does herald a new day in feminist organizing. One when women’s anger begins online but takes to the street, when a local step makes global waves and when one feminist action can spark debate, controversy and activism that will have lasting effects on the movement.

There is a lot of power in watching women who are living the life they want, embracing their desires. And of thinking about what they do – contradicting the concept of the sex-worker as an unthinking and exploited slutty bimbo. These women like what they do, like sex and are not embarrassed about it. And there’s yet more power, in being in a theatre full of women, and a couple of hardy men, hearing applause and laughter when someone orgasms.

—-

My secret, well-informed insider tells me these are the ones you must see:

Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister – BBC period drama about a very assertive lesbian of the Regency era.  Already adored by Auckland and Wellington audiences, and there’s a last chance Wellington screening tomorrow Thursday at 8.40pm
The Real Ann Lister – companion BBC documentary which tells a slightly less palatable, and more complex story of the woman who inspired The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister… turns out she was a bit of a bit of a perv.  This is the story of her hidden, thoroughly encoded diaries which took 150 years to come to light – known as ‘the Rosetta stone of lesbian history’.  Presented by lesbian comedian Sue Perkins – even if docos usually aren’t your cup of tea, this is hilarious as well as interesting.  Two screenings – this Sat and Sun.
Too Much Pussy! rescreening 5.05 Saturday
Last Summer of La Boyita – hard to explain the subtleties of why this is in a queer film festival without ruining it for you – but suffice to say it’s a warm, summery, understated wee gem about a girl’s coming of age and awakening and all that stuff… not in a creepy way.  Take your mum to it.
6.20pm Sat
Le Tigre On Tour – political manifesto, road movie and rock concert rolled into one.  Brilliant. Rescreens 2pm Sunday.

** Having said that, golly Madison Young is cute. (That link is a Wikipedia page, so SFW. Feel free to Google images.)

One response to “Too Much Pussy

  1. dimsie June 8, 2011 at 9:59 am

    I’m just trying to imagine documentaries not being my thing.

    Nup. Never happen.

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