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Controversial Movie Is Being Called The Most Honest Film Ever Made About The Porn Industry

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Controversial Movie Is Being Called The Most Honest Film Ever Made About The Porn Industry

The porn industry is being shown in a new light in a 'no holds barred' documentary-style film shot by Swedish filmmaker Ninja Thyberg.

It's been described as being 'too honest' as it shows how the porn industry can appear to newcomers and how tough it can be to reach the top.

Watch the video here:

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Pleasure follows Bella, played by Sofia Kappel, as a young Swedish woman who arrives in L.A. with dreams of becoming an adult film star. The documentary drama details her initial start into the US porn industry, before taking on tougher and rougher films.

Pleasure has been criticsed for being 'too honest' about the adult film industry. Credit: MUBI
Pleasure has been criticsed for being 'too honest' about the adult film industry. Credit: MUBI

In this coming-of-age film, viewers see Bell yearn to be a 'Spiegler girl' – the name for porn actors managed by agent Mark Spiegler.

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The film takes on orgies, rape fantasies and double anal as it shows Bella working through the adult film industry.

As the documentary style film evolves, viewers see Bella's ruthless ambition lead her into more and more dangerous territory, as she struggles to reconcile her dreams of empowerment with the realities of the darker side of her industry.

The film will be streamed in the UK, Ireland, Italy, Turkey and Latin America from June 17th and it's already picked up stellar reviews. Indiewire called it: "The most honest film anyone has ever made about the modern porn industry."

Pleasure is set to be released widely from June 17th. Credit: MUBI
Pleasure is set to be released widely from June 17th. Credit: MUBI
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Speaking to Dazed, filmmaker Thyberg shared: "I wish (porn) was something you just did on your own and didn’t have an impact on anything. But it’s sexual education for everyone on the planet because we never see explicit sex anywhere else."

Initially, Thyberg's debut film was criticised by others in the industry, including director Axel Braun. Braun called Pleasure 'too honest'. He also tweeted: "We all got duped into helping (Thyberg) make a movie that would have never happened without our support."

However, Thyberg said the director has since changed his mind. She explained: "(Braun) saw it again, and he messaged me. He said he’d changed his mind and apologised.

Sofia Kappell stars as Bella in her debut role. Credit: MUBI/Ninja Thyberg
Sofia Kappell stars as Bella in her debut role. Credit: MUBI/Ninja Thyberg
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"He was at the premiere yesterday… I honestly think a lot of men in the industry aren’t bad. They don’t want to hurt women. They just don’t understand it. Maybe they haven’t made a huge effort to understand the female perspective."

The film was originally planned to be aired at Cannes 2020, but due to the pandemic it didn't feature. It instead launched at Sundance 2021 to rave reviews and an acquisition by A24.

Now it's being made available more widely, with viewers keen to watch the insider view of the industry.

Pleasure is released in cinemas for special event screenings on June 15 and streams exclusively on MUBI from June 17.

Featured Image Credit: MUBI

Topics: Film & TV, Sex and Relationships, Film and TV, Pornhub

Niamh Spence
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