Two porn-o-riffic films came out on the scene recently and I wanted to answer the question: The Canyons versus Lovelace, who won?
Lindsay Lohan stars in The Canyons, alongside James Deen- not the James Dean- or his body reincarnated- but a random actor I didn’t know existed because apparently he’s a porn star! I, of course, am not fully versed in the porn world! I swear! I only know like…10 porn stars…
The movie is about a gorgeous and flirtatious gold digging girl, Lohan, who’s in this relationship with Deen whom regularly invites other males to enjoy her …umm…hospitality. Deen’s drive is to be some type of porn director so he’s filming these cheesy Iphone videos of Lohan when she’s getting down with a stranger.
Deen seems to take decent care of her and she generally gets to hang out by the pool and do nothing but look beautiful, smoke grass, and be sexy. Deen keeps her busy on a film he’s supposedly working to fund/direct (a porn) and she interviews the possible actors during pre-development. It’s there where she runs into her ex-boyfriend. He reminds her of the old times before she sold herself out and thus the crux of Lohan’s character. And by the way most of this was told in dialogue to fill in the audience.
The story takes you on a semi-dramatic climax that unfortunately falls flat. The only steam this movie has are Lohan’s good looks and the rabid curiosity of the viewer. As a movie in of itself, it sorely lacks in any momentum or suspense. The budget was very small and I’m not criticizing the set or direction because that was actually OK. I just didn’t think it was a great script. I guess I was expecting something unique in this film, a reason why Lohan did it because she didn’t make much money from it upfront. Although, she probably took 50% of the back end.
I think what the creators/producers were hoping for was that this would become a big cult film and it would just naturally grow. These days you never know with Clueless, Twilight— films that no one ever thought would bring in any cash.
Some stoners are probably sitting on their couch and saying, “you know this is not that bad” and then some people would give it a few more stars because, hey, it wasn’t terrible, right? But, for me, I don’t think this film got over that hump. It’s actually not a sex movie where Lohan is constantly naked, either. You see more of her if you just type her name in Google.
When it comes to Lohan’s acting, I had this odd feeling that she was drugged up the entire time she was filming and I saw no real distinction between her on TMZ walking out of a club last month versus the movie set. I felt like she was propped up and dressed to the nines while unconscious. As they smeared red lipstick on her face, she came to life like a young Elizabeth Taylor—distraught below the surface. Just enough sadness to fulfill the character, but leaves you asking the question if she was even acting. I’m really not feeling her constant smokers voice, either. But hey, that’s me.
I think Lindsay will make a come back, but doing a movie that sadly reflects her life was probably not the best choice. I think she needs to pick roles that accentuate a totally different person so she can really show her range.
Meanwhile, Lovelace also came out at the same time On Demand, so of course I had to check that out. Amanda Seyfried plays Linda Lovelace and as you recall, I don’t know much about the porn world. But, apparently she had a very tragic story ala Boogie Nights and was one of the first real female porn stars. She’s best known for her mega hit, “Deep Throat” which is exactly what it means.
I would rate this movie almost on par with Boogie Nights because it totally interested me, and I thought the acting was really great. Amanda did a fantastic job playing the younger naive girl with a suburban severe family life that left her without any support. She was of course hooked on the first guy who showed her attention- and he happened to be Chuck Traynor, a huge future porn producer. Chuck is played by Peter Skaarsgard who legitimizes the film and gives Seyfried an ample foundation to play off of.
Seyfried’s role called for a younger version, a transition version, a “realized” version and then the aftermath. I thought she distinctly played each part of her character perfectly. In comparison, there was no real transition that I saw in The Canyons, yet it followed a very similar flow. The script in The Canyons didn’t provide Lindsay with anything special, in my opinion.
The real big surprise of Lovelace was Sharon Stone!!! She plays Linda’s mother and does a fantastic job at playing this chilly, structured wife who can’t move past her own discretion and past to help Linda. James Franco has a bit role as Hugh Hefner, nothing special, but a nice little cameo.
The movie follows Linda’s story and it’s so sad, intriguing, desperate, awful… everything you expect it to be. To be honest, I think all of us girls can relate because at one time or another we’ve asked ourselves if we would ever sell our bodies if it really came down to it? Would you? There’s one scene that was heartbreaking and you were left realizing that for as glamorous as fame and money can be, she was never respected. She has a line in the film where she says, “I was in a porn for 17 minutes, and that’s not all of me”. So true.
Perhaps Lovelace was a better film because it had a naturally poignant plot built in. The movie was ten times better than The Canyons, and it’s what The Canyons wanted to be, I think. I know Lindsay wasn’t playing a porn star, but I wanted to see her break down more, move on with her life — not just her sitting in a restaurant having a meaningless 5 second moment to reflect on her old life. You left me hanging! When you do that kind of an ending you’re left as an audience member to focus more on what wasn’t there in the other parts of the film.
The only negative I picked out of Lovelace is that while overall it was a good movie after watching TC, Lovelace did give off that Lifetime movie vibe. The film cost 10 M to make, but most of that was probably salary.
The real twist is apparently Lohan was pegged to play Linda Lovelace in another biopic titled Inferno. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen. She needs to focus on other films with real grit, not real tit.