DVD Review: Lovelace
Despite the the glamourous, titillating cover, I knew that Lovelace was going to cover some of the darker moments of Linda Lovelace’s career as porn’s most famous star.
What I wasn’t really expecting however was a by the numbers drama, telling the oh so sad story of a girl raised in an oppressively religious house, only to be swept off her feet by the charismatic, if somewhat controlling Chuck Traynor and then some time later, finds her salvation in the porn industry.
But this is just what Lovelace delivers, right up to the part where Linda is sitting down taking a polygraph for her publishers who want to make sure her biography, well, exposé, is legit. Before the polygraph is completed however, we jump in Dr Who’s Tardis and jump back in time to Lovelace’s wedding night, and we get to witness Chuck’s violent, abusive, darker side.
What happens in this second act uncovers the chilling side to the porn industry as Lovelace is beaten, threatened and passed around as a sexual toy, all for the advancement of her husband’s bank account.
Two pivotal moments in the film version of Linda’s life, both when she had a chance to escape, her would be saviours throw her back to the dogs. The first of these is her mother, played with heart-rending honesty by a surprisingly great Sharon Stone, who, not knowing the gravity of her words, tells Linda to go back and obey her husband, as a good wife should. The second time is a couple of cops who arrive on a domestic violence scene and are about to go all ape shit on Chuck Traynor, until one of the cops recognises Linda from her infamous role in Deep Throat, and suddenly their attitudes change, essentially telling Chuck to carry on.
The film covers some uncomfortable territory before getting to the third act where we get to see Linda after the publishers agree to publish her book, and we find out how spending essentially only 17 days in the porn industry, effected her life.
From a slow start that almost misfires, Lovelace picks up momentum quickly, delivering some big punches and delivering a mesmerising, if not fun, film.
And yes, you do get to see Amanda Seyfried (or her double?) naked, but this is not a film that wants to show you a good time, so if that’s your motivation, go find something less compelling to watch.
Rating: R16 Violence, sexual violence, drug use, offensive language & sex scenes.
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