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Lovelace: Reflection of Marital Abuse

Posted on the 18 August 2013 by Haricharanpudipeddi @pudiharicharan
Lovelace: Reflection of Marital Abuse

Movie: Lovelace

Director: Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman

Cast: Amanda Seyfried, Sharon Stone, Peter Sarsgaard, Juno Temple, James Franco and Hank Azaria

Rating: ***1/2

One of the biggest mistakes that Linda Lovelace ever committed in her life was to take her mother’s advice – obey your husband and do what pleases him – way too seriously. The result of which is what we see in “Lovelace”, a touching story about one of the world’s earliest porn stars who like any other American teenager was powered by the urge to live the American dream, only to get used and abused by her dominating husband in the process.

For those assuming “Lovelace” is a peek into the world of pornography said through the eyes of a young Linda, you’re only half right. More than an indictment of the pornography industry, this film is an indictment and expose on spousal abuse. It’s about what happened to Linda pre and post marriage and how she was abused by her husband throughout.

She was forced into doing these films, raped and made to sleep with men for money by her husband. It’s only for a brief period you see Linda as ‘Linda Lovelace’ of the most successful blue film ‘Deep Throat’, but after that you start developing an emotional bond with the woman inside her who constantly gets abused.

Borrowing one of the lines of Linda from the film, where she says, “At first, I’m like a flower bud and then I start to grow petals and bloom”. Yes, she was a bud at first, but even before she could bloom completely, she was exploited by her husband Chuck.

The story is cut in two halves. The first half narrates the rise of a young, urban middle class girl to the status of a celebrated porn star, almost compared to the equivalent of a Hollywood star. The second half re-narrates the same story of Linda Boreman turning into Linda Lovelace, a poster girl of sexual revolution, but then quickly turns into a battered tale of a woman forced to quench the sexual craving of rich men by her husband.

Amanda might be too pretty to play Lovelace, but she nailed it with her poised performance. The real Linda Lovelace (sorry to say this) is not even half as pretty as Amanda, but this young actress portrays the chirpiness as well as pain of the lead character to perfection.

Peter as Amanda’s husband Chuck was effective but could have been even more powerful in the abusing scenes. Nevertheless, one can’t ignore his solid performance. Sharon Stone as the disciplinarian mother of Amanda has some of the best moments in the film. One of the best scenes where she consoles a frightened Amanda makes her look evil but harshly believable.

No “Lovelace” doesn’t give you a boner, but it stimulates you emotionally to understand the pain of Linda Lovelace. I like the line with which the film ends – Linda Lovelace-starrer “Deep Throat” raked in over $600 million in its lifetime, while Linda only made $1250 in her 17 days brief stint as a porn star.

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