Why Netflix ‘Cuties’ will never be watched or reviewed in our house – critically acclaimed or panned, we don’t care

I don’t like to use the word ‘never’ very often, but it certainly applies here.

We like to put a graphic at the top of each post, but this one is intentionally going without. Not tagging it and leaving it “uncategorized” which is about as nondescript as any post can ever be. I don’t even want to copy the box art onto our hard drive for the movie in question. Hopefully, this one just fades into obscurity … quickly. That’s how strongly I dislike this project.

Unavoidably as part of my entertainment movie and TV news research, I’ve come across (too much of) the controversy over the upcoming Netflix film Cuties, which involves 11 year old girls that act and dress provocatively in order to gain social media likes and attention.

Yikes.

Gary from Nerdrotic has made a couple videos about it, as he delved much deeper into this than we ever will:

Nerdrotic smacks down the sickness, go get ’em, Gary!

These young girls are inviting adults into their world and everything about this makes me cringe. I’m used to defending creativity and art and myself being a horror novelist and fan of horror, I’m open to some pretty wild, strange and bizarre things that others have, would and will define as offensive, but this film isn’t being presented in the horror genre and it involves children intentionally acting provocatively.

Is this Netflix film illegal? Probably not. It doesn’t change things for me, I’m not going to watch it and find out. If I’m missing some great piece of filmmaking, so be it. Will forever be denied.

I haven’t ever watched Stanley Kubrick’s Lolita either. Sorry, zero plans to do so. You can tell me what I’m missing in the comments, if you want, but doubtful my mind will change.

Not trying to tell anybody else what should be offensive for you, and frankly, it’s difficult to offend me with any type of creative work, but there is nothing about this film that I find even remotely interesting or entertaining to review, much less watch.

It’s extremely rare that any film earns a “I will never watch this” vote simply from a small bit of press coverage — most articles I’ve clicked away from — and plot description, but Cuties wins that distinction.

As a proud grandparent and a parent, I don’t have any feelings except extreme malice for child predators. These kinds of films may have some kind of place in the world of art to be made (they shouldn’t), but I don’t have to watch them. This is our house, and we’re just saying no.

This film, wrongly I think, doesn’t seem to be there to horrify the audience, it’s there for other seemingly prurient reasons, even if the filmmaker is saying she intended it for scholarly purposes, it will be treated differently by deviants. Just read what the director says about the subject, which to me is a thousand shades of taboo no-no-no.

Intrigued, Doucouré spent more than a year researching the topic, interviewing groups of girls she met in the street, in parks or youth associations, trying to find out what drove them to dress and dance so provocatively and then post clips publicly. “I came to understand that an existence on social networks was extremely important for these youngsters and that often they were trying to imitate the images they saw around them, in adverts or on the social networks,” she recalls. “The most important thing for them was to achieve as many ‘likes’ as possible.”

Director Maïmouna Doucouré reveals the “shocking” inspiration behind Sundance drama ‘Cuties’ | Features | Screen

What type of director researches this topic and thinks it makes good fodder for a film? Who is the audience for this film? Adults? What do you expect adults to do with this content? Parents and grandparents (like me) are going to be largely outraged and sickened.

They are. It’s sparked a protest and condemnation and a petition to have it removed. Netflix changed the promotional artwork and apologized, but they are pressing ahead with releasing it in September 2020.

Scott Mendelson from Forbes thinks the controversy is “totally ridiculous” — WOW

All our children and grandchildren are boys. I don’t have any girls, but if I had a female child or grandchild that was doing what the director described, I’d be in parental counselor mode saying “maybe your friends aren’t the kinds of friends you should be hanging out with.” This is wholly inappropriate behavior for young girls. Getting “likes” for inviting inappropriate behavior from adults is wrong on so many levels I don’t even know where to begin.

So, if anybody is looking for a review or recommendation from this website for this movie, sorry, it will never be forthcoming from us. If I could find a way to block it from appearing in our personal Netflix feed, I would (tip: Netflix, let us filter out garbage like this).

Again, not telling anybody else what they should or shouldn’t watch. Just what we have no interest in watching. If you were wondering what we think of Cuties, you now know what we think of the mere concept — and that’s enough.

Shame on you, Netflix. This has attention whoring written all over it. I get it, more clicks, more subscribers, yadda, yadda. I’ve been around the internet block longer than your company has been in business. Some things simply aren’t worth clicks or new subscribers. Some things we should just say no to supporting and bringing onto our platforms. Netflix should just never release this film. Unfortunately, they aren’t likely to hear this cricket chirping.

No.

5 thoughts on “Why Netflix ‘Cuties’ will never be watched or reviewed in our house – critically acclaimed or panned, we don’t care

  1. I could grasp it if the director was aiming for it as a wake-up call to people, but it doesn’t sound like she is. I always hated this stuff – I wouldn’t even watch Honey Boo Boo. And I had daughters who performed in dance at a young age and my granddaughter does dance and gymnastics. They’re not being provocative, they’re expressing themselves. This seems like they are craving attention; their parents are neglecting them (if they knew about it how could they allow it?) so they are behaving in a way that gets them attention – the wrong kind. Celebrating that is like celebrating Jeffrey Epstein.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree that there are angles of this story that could have been explored. How about the horror of a parent that found out this was happening and seeks to protect the other children from themselves? That doesn’t appear the route this film is going either. Viewers need only a very tiny dose of the activity, maybe even exposition and a lot of the outrage and how to fix it. That’s a movie I could likely watch on the topic. I can’t watch anything from the children’s standpoint trying to gain attention because they aren’t, as you eloquently indicated, getting enough at home.

      It seemed for several weeks I was seeing nothing but Epstein and Maxwell news. That seems to have calmed down in favor of the impending election.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Good for you for standing up for what you believe in! This is the beauty of being a movie blogger, to be able to choose which content is covered on your site. I’m not sure if you’re aware of this, but there is a blog called Pure Entertainment Preservation Society. The creators of that blog, the Brannan sisters, have dedicated their website to educating others and spreading awareness about the Breen Code, encouraging decency to come back to entertainment. Their articles are thorough, thought-provoking, and could introduce your family to some cinematic gems! It’s a blog I would definitely recommend!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the recommendation. Hadn’t heard about that.

      Should probably clarify that just because we are personally never going to cover Netflix Cuties, doesn’t mean that there isn’t a (very slight) crack open in the door that some other movie reviewer might cover that movie here someday (we are open to other writers contributing to this site).

      Since our website is about “us” it’s not just my wife and I, it stands to reason that someday other reviewers will share movie reviews and that could be one of them, along with some of the other movies we have chosen not to review (6 Underground, for example, which we couldn’t get through, it’s not a objectionable content issue there). There are other reasons besides objectionable subject matter that we wouldn’t review a movie or TV show.

      Do appreciate the rec, however. Will check that out.

      Liked by 1 person

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