- YEAR: 1982
- DIRECTOR: Patricia Birch
- KEY ACTORS: Michelle Pfeiffer, Maxwell Caulfield
- CERTIFICATE: PG
- IMDB SCORE: 4.4
- ROTTEN TOMATOES SCORE: 38%
SEX SCORE: 4/5
✔️ It is absolutely rewatchable. I’ve not watched it as much as I have the original but it is no less addictive!
✔️ And it easily passes the Bechdel Test.
❌ But it is not sex positive! They are critical of virginity, the woman aren’t satisfied, there’s a lot of casual sexual harassment and the gender politics just aren’t good…
✔️ I do think the cast are fuckable – Michelle Pfeiffer is super hot and Michael looks really good, even if he shouldn’t speak!
❌ But it didn’t inspire fantasies. Not sexual ones anyway! I’d wanted to be as cool as Stephanie but I wasn’t that interested in reproducing the romantic plot line.
- YEAR: 2001
- Director: Baz Luhrmann
- KEY ACTORS: Nicole Kidman, Ewan McGregor
- CERTIFICATE: 12
- IMDB SCORE: 7.6
- ROTTEN TOMATOES SCORE: 76%
SEX SCORE: 4/5
✔️ It does pass the Bechdel test…but only just! Satine has a conversation with Marie, her dresser, about being a star. That’s it.
✔️ And, oh my gosh, I want to fuck the cast! It’s difficult to argue whether this is either of McGregor or Kidman’s peak hotness because they have just had so many peaks but, damn, they are beautiful in this movie…
✔️ It’s also incredibly rewatchable. If I come across it on TV, I will always watch it, no matter where in the movie we are.
✔️ And Moulin Rouge did inspire fantasies. Not of sex work but of being that beautiful, that glamorous, that sexually confident…
❌ But it is not sex positive! It’s not sex worker positive, it’s not feminist, and it values virginity much too highly!
As always, this contains spoilers so watch the film before you read on…
STREAMING: Amazon Prime (rent £2.49, buy £6.99), YouTube (from £3.99). For a full list of streaming options, check out JustWatch.com
DIRECTOR: Jim Sharman
KEY ACTORS: Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon, Barry Bostwick
IMDB SCORE: 7.4
ROTTEN TOMATOES SCORE: 80%
SEX SCORE: 3.5/5
✔️ So Rocky Horror passes the Bechdel Test, but this is another example where it can be argued that its passing is ‘dubious.’ It does literally pass the binary test, but all the qualifying conversations between named female characters are still about sex…just sex with a woman.
✔️ It is rewatchable. But I’d recommend watching it at the cinema if at all possible – it is so much more fun that way!
✔️ And I do want to fuck the cast. They’re all either very extreme or very normal, but the characters are so horny that they have an undeniable appeal. Also, I love a man in stockings…
❓ Unsure if this really count as inspiring a fantasy as it didn’t get quite as far as a full-blown fantasy, but this film is certainly the first time that I saw a man in heels and stockings look so good and, lets just say, it changed things!
❌ But considering how revolutionary it was at the time it was released and how important it has been to queer representation, I don’t think Rocky Horror is sex positive. Frank is too predatory; Rocky is too exploited; Janet is not a slut. It’s wonderful but its sexual politics haven’t aged so well.
DIRECTOR: Emile Ardolino
KEY ACTORS: Patrick Swayze, Jennifer Grey, Cynthia Rhodes
IMDB SCORE: 7.0
ROTTEN TOMATOES SCORE: 71%
SEX SCORE: 5/5
✔️Definitely rewatchable – the soundtrack alone would tempt me to watch it again before even considering the dancing!
✔️ And yes, I’d want to fuck Patrick Swayze at his peak. Didn’t we all?
✔️ For a film made in the 80s when rape and misogyny were often amusing plot points, this is such a sex positive film! It supports easy access to abortion, and the coming of age through holiday romance, hot hot sex and dance. It would rank higher than a lot of more modern movies; it’s extraordinary.
✔️ Just as Up in the Air is an archetypal hotel fuck movie, this is the holiday romance movie to inspire all holiday romances. Of course I wanted the hottest guy on holiday to notice me and want me and fuck me in secret and then publicly announce his love for me. It’s the dream of a teenage girl who never thought she’d be noticed but it’s still a great dream… Oh, and I always always always want to dance like I’m being fucked. It’s everything.
✔️AND it passes the Bechdel Test! Only the second 5/5 film yet!!