“#CancelNetflix” began trending on social media Thursday as Americans expressed outrage at the streaming service for the release of “Cuties,” a french film depicting young girls scantily dressed and performing provocative dances. Users posted screenshots of their Netflix subscription cancellations, accusing the platform of normalizing pedophilia.
“Cancel your Netflix subscription. Do not support the sexualization of children,” wrote Ian Miles Cheong.
Cancel your Netflix subscription. Do not support the sexualization of children. pic.twitter.com/JIQXRc1GFC
— Ian Miles Cheong @ stillgray.substack.com (@stillgray) September 10, 2020
— Tamika Hamilton (@TamikaGHamilton) September 10, 2020
After the movie was released on Netflix Wednesday, clips and graphic descriptions of the content flooded social media, featuring four young girls performing sexual dances for an adult audience, which was presumably choreographed and directed by an adult film crew.
Netflix is comfortable with this. Plenty of people will defend it. This is where our culture is at. https://t.co/UlqEmXALmd
— Mary Margaret Olohan (@MaryMargOlohan) September 10, 2020
An initial “Parent’s Guide” for the film on IMDB.com included warnings of erotic dance scenes that “purposefully exploit & objectify numerous scantily clad underage girls,” including one who “lifts her crop top to fully display her bare breast.” Another warning describes “lengthy & excessive closeup shots of breasts, bums, and spread crotches.”
However, IMDB edited the “Parent’s Guide” page, with these original warnings removed or toned down, and one review added claiming the “11 year old girls dancing very suggestively, it is intended to be seen in an unflattering light.”
the parental guide BEFORE (left) vs. AFTER (right)
BEFORE link: https://t.co/un0wLrHmHX
— Siraj Hashmi (@SirajAHashmi) September 10, 2020
Backlash against Netflix first began in mid-August when a promotional poster for “Cuties” depicted the four main girl characters on stage, in suggestive poses and exposed midriffs. Netflix quickly apologized for the film’s artwork, calling it “inappropriate,” but not saying whether or not they would pull the film from their September line-up.
“We’re deeply sorry for the inappropriate artwork that we used for Mignonnes/Cuties,” a Netflix spokeswoman told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “It was not OK, nor was it representative of this French film which premiered at Sundance. We’ve now updated the pictures and description.”
Since the initial backlash, the film has received a number of positive reviews. The Telegraph called it “a provocative powder-keg for an age terrified of child sexuality,” while 88 percent of verified critics on Rotten Tomatoes approved of the film.
Can we also cancel rotten tomatoes for their rating? These are grown critics giving Cuties positive reviews. Hope this stop people using them to decide on anything! #CancelNetflix pic.twitter.com/2mjnxSC1UY
— Rasslin Fan (@RassslinFan) September 10, 2020
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) September 10, 2020