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Gaspar Noé’s controversial new film ‘Love’ causes a stir ahead of its premiere
By Lewis Firth | Art | 13 November 2015

Copyright Les Cinémas de la Zone, 2015.

At Cannes Film Festival this year, Love, a semi-autobiographical film by Gaspar Noé (the same director who made Enter the Void in 2009), was most acclaimed. But it also caused a stir.

Russia recently banned the film – shock – for its “pornographic scenes” (two women are having sex, so, they mean that), and a far-right pressure group, Promouvoir, managed to persuade French censors to increase its age rating from 16 to 18.

“All governments like controlling people’s sexuality. Whoever has the power has the power because they can castrate the people,” Noé explained in an interview with The Guardian. “There’s something chaotic in sex. When people start fucking, there are no more classes – a pussy’s a pussy.”

Copyright Les Cinémas de la Zone, 2015.


Noé is known for his “controversiality” – translated into normal-speak, that means his candidness and courage to approach brain-searing – and important – issues in society is what he’s known for. Drugs and rape – in Irréversible, for example, a pregnant woman was raped – have been focal points of Noé’s work in the past. Yet, they weren’t met with an equivalent backlash seen with Love.

One statement with The Guardian is worth noting: “You’re just used to seeing a hand [rather than a penis on screen],” he explained. “Even hands with guns seem far more normal. And that’s a major cultural western problem.” Desensitisation with violence is normal, but the natural act of sex is seen to be an incendiary topic. Sense? None.

The one-night-only, nationwide premiere of Love shows on 18th November.


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