3.09.2012

Lolita.

Dakota Fanning was shooting some editorial at work the other day. She looks like a little doll, no? Even now that she's older, she has this quality like Drew Barrymore still has: a somewhat childlike face and a memorable career as a childhood actress to match that lets viewers impose an even more childlike face upon her.

Last year, Ms. Fanning shot an ad campaign for Marc Jacobs' perfume line. She was 17 years old at the time, and the world uproariously responded; the ads were even banned in the UK. I mean, I get it. It's that pink tinted hue to the photo that makes it look vintage and seemingly amateurish, the cold shadow against the far wall and the downward tilt of her chin that makes you feel like she's being photographed at someone else's will. But then again, that was pretty much the idea; it's an obvious nod to Nabokov and a reminder to everyone out there that seventeen year old people have sex. 


I don't know what kind of sex you were having at seventeen, but I was having glorious, exploratory, invulnerable sex. I was having indoor, outdoor, multiple partner sex; girl sex, boy sex, digital-in-the-back-seat-sex, oops-the-condom-broke-sex and who-cares-if-I'm-on-my-period sex. I was having beautiful auto-erotic while reading Anias Nin late into the night sex. I was having very much in love with my boyfriend turned fiancee sex. The point is that I was having, as many teenagers have, this kind of worry free, love filled, fun and guiltless sex that is hard to have as you start adding more candles to the birthday Cake, and I am lucky that I never have to be divorced from this girl that was once me, and yes, I likely could be swayed to purchase a product that mildly promised that I could regain that.

But this isn't really about advertising, but rather the desexualization of teenagers. Now I'm not here to have a debate whether teenagers are truly ready for the responsibilities that come with sex because I don't necessarily think you can blame someone that you haven't properly armed, and I think we, in general, fall short in that respect. What this is about is...shit. I've talked myself into an unavoidable corner where I'm about to quote John Mayer, but "girls become lovers who turn into mothers", so please, whatever you chose to arm your daughters with today, remember that she may one day do the same to her daughter in kind. 


This has all been a very long lead in to plug my Mom's movie. She is talented and amazing, and has spent more than a few hours over the years listening to me spill my guts over some boy or another, sometimes explicitly. Like all Moms, she wants me safe and happy. I am lucky, however, that she also wants me opinionated.


My opinions aside, I've seen this film twice in different stages, and what I thought at first was a simple nod to my own ideals turned out to be unbelievably divisive, specifically across races and generations and less so by gender (am I the only one that finds this weird?) And, I don't know. Teen sex is one of those situations with many layers of grey, but what I can almost guarantee you is that if you know a teenage girl, you can be assured that she will have sex one day, as one hundred times out of a hundred this is the case. Don't you at least think she should have the best playbook possible? I mean, do you really think this world is becoming an easier place to navigate the complexities of sexual relationships within? 


So...watch the trailer, check out the website, and then you'll no doubt want to make it official.


And please, stay safe kittens.
--M

No comments: