How "Deep Throat" changed cinema



Watching a 35mm copy of Deep Throat over at Visual Arts Building here in Montreal, I couldn't help but be reminded of just how important snuff cinema truly was. Forget about how important it was to porn, and how it has basically shaped, molded -sadly- the 21st century woman as we know of it. This 1972 film a starring Linda Lovelace as a woman that finds out she has a clitoris in her throat and gains deepened pleasure from performing fellatio to her men is a kind of "opened door" to the way women would get treated in mainstream Hollywood cinema. "Director" Gerard Damiano's film was almost a kind of "OK" for the female to get looked down upon in mainstream cinema. After watching Deep Throat and subsequent Porno films that followed it, Hollywood had a reaction that was almost akin to them saying "Hey we can write these female roles whichever way we want them to be written and not many will complain about the downgrade cause they're over there shocked at what Lovelace is doing".

I know many people that would say Deep Throat was important to the advancement of feminism given the fact that the film actually promotes Female Orgasm! A far cry from today's porn where -unless shot by an amateur- will not even come close to showing us a woman climaxing. In fact these days only the guy has an orgasm and, in doing so, also degrades the girl by abusing her face with his semen. Deep Throat made Linda Lovelace a sort of celebrity and had many people imitating what they were seeing onscreen - and still do to this day. It's a film that is probably as influential as any from the 70's. Going back to this feminist angle that I was just talking about, yea I see what people mean by its role in female empowerment but at the same time I don't think it's very empowering to have the idea of a woman with a clitoris in her throat, ingenious, but demeaning.

Lovelace was actually featured in a recent "bio-pic" which had Amanda Seyfried playing the porn star. Lovelace's life was not a walk in the park. She claims she was held at gun point in making the film. She eventually starred in a number of soft-core films that didn't really come to much else but a quick buck for her career. She was being slapped around by her "bosses" while making "Deep Throat" and you could clearly see the bruises on her arms and legs in the film.
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