Cuties director Maïmouna Doucouré has defended her Netflix movie amid a possible US authorities investigation.
The movie, which received a directing award at Sundance however has been the topic of controversy since its launch on September 9, continues to be on the centre of debates concerning the sexualisation of youngsters.
“It’s because I saw so many things and so many issues around me lived by young girls, that I decided to make this film and sound an alarm and say we need to protect our children,” Doucouré defined at a Toronto International Film Festival panel (per The Hollywood Reporter).
She added: “It’s bold, it’s feminist, but it’s so important and necessary to create debate and try to find solutions, for me as an artist, for politicians and parents. It’s a real issue.”
Netflix had defended Cuties in an announcement earlier this week, calling it “a social commentary against the sexualization of young children. It’s an award winning film and a powerful story about the pressure young girls face on social media and from society more generally growing up – and we’d encourage anyone who cares about these important issues to watch the movie.”
Senator Ted Cruz wrote a letter to US Attorney General William Burr on September 11, urging the Department of Justice to analyze the movie.
“The video streaming service and content-producer Netflix is currently hosting a film entitled Cuties that sexualizes young girls, including through dance scenes that simulate sexual activities and a scene exposing a minor’s bare breast,” the letter reads.
In a four-star overview of the movie, Music News stated, “Doucouré is clearly trying to hold up a mirror here; her film is a powerful exploration of the way young girls are subconsciously encouraged to perform for the male gaze.”