Feminism Porn and The Woman Behind the Camera

A female porn director explains why feminist pornography is exactly what you’ve been looking for!

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Photo by Rocio Lunaire for XConfessions.com

Hot girl orders pizza. Guy delivers pizza. Girl answers door in a towel. Guy doesn’t take a hint and leaves, but comes back to grab his “forgotten” wallet. Hot girl drops her towel and pounces delivery guy. Camera zooms in on her. They spend the next half-hour in the bedroom rolling under the sheets, finally reaching the climax of the story we’ve all been waiting for. What makes this flick different than most pornos is that the director behind the camera yelling “cut!” is a woman, and the focus of the story is the hot girl and what she wants out of this explicit rendezvous.

Now that we’ve got your attention, meet Erika Lust, a 39-year-old Swede, a mother of two, and an erotic-film director for over a decade in Barcelona. The Good Girl was Lust’s first adult film; a university project she decided would reflect her take on the pizza-guy porno storyline. It’s a product of her values, her education in political science and feminism, her sexuality, and her disgust with mainstream porn.

While Lust, like many other female adult-film directors, is part of this genre of “feminist porn,” she’s careful to use such an oxymoronic term because of how it might be interpreted.

“People misunderstand both words and it gets very complex,” she explains. “When you hear ‘porn,’ you think it’s against women, and when you hear “feminism” you think it’s against men.”

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Photo by Mireya for XConfessions.com

Lust goes on to explain that aside from involving more women in the decision-making positions in the porn industry and having feminists behind the camera, this genre of adult film focuses on the female characters; what she wants; how she likes it; and what turns her on. (Tip: Keep a notebook handy when watching.)

To put it plainly, it’s pornography produced by women and made for, well, everyone. So in case you were looking for a way to convince your gal to partake in a screening of a sexually illicit film as a form of foreplay, this is the compromise you’re looking for. If you’re still not convinced, Lust says 60 per cent of her viewers are men, many of which email her, thanking her for producing films their partner likes enough to watch with them; kind of like a Friday-night movie.

Between the first issue of Playboy in 1953 and the influx of VHS in America, the porn industry experienced its very own Golden Age; a time when critics took these films seriously and directors like Bill Osco and Andy Warhol produced indie-cult classics worthy of mention by talk-show hosts.

Yet, somewhere along the way, the porn industry lost its touch to arouse our imagination; it traded in its values, creative plots, character development, cinematography, and, in essence, its eroticism, for uninspired close-up shots of genitals.

“It became like some kind of sausage factory; strip-club owners who went out and bought cameras and thought, ‘let’s film these girls and make it more hardcore,’” says Lust. “Porn still has so much potential

Having such a vocal and opinionated audience inspired Lust to start Xconfession.com. Since 2013, Lust has released seven volumes, each including a compilation of 10 short erotic films based on some of the thousands of confessions she receives from her fans. To help stay true to the fantasy, Lust believes it’s important to compliment each one with the right setting, costume design, music, and a diverse cast. Just don’t expect any silicone on her set; that’s what mainstream porn is for.

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Photo by Irene Moray

Although there are a variety of sexual themes in play, like the usual threesomes, BDSM, and infidelity, based on the confessions she receives, Lust believes her audience to be quite cultured. Many of the fantasies make reference to music, television, film, technology, and online sites like couchsurfing.com and eatwith.com.

“I really think people want more eroticism and storytelling in their lives, and that, more often than not, pornography doesn’t cover that,” she says. “It focuses too much on positions, ejaculation, and penetration, and it becomes all too technical, having very little to do with our erotic minds.”

Although such angles are essential in porn, Lust believes it’s just as crucial to show her actors’ faces and their reaction and expression to help convey the sexual attraction between them; often times Lust doesn’t interfere in the middle of sex scene if she thinks her actors are really getting into it.

“I think the job of the director is to try to understand how they feel and whether they’re connecting,” she says. “And, from experience, when I have a woman behind the camera, not only does she make my actress feel more comfortable, but she’s also able to recognize, more so than men, the moment the actress is having an orgasm.”

And who doesn’t want to see that?

Erika Lust films can be a purchased or rented from erikalust.com.

By Stephanie La Leggia

 

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