Of the umpteen Linda Lovelace biopics in the works, Millennium film’s “Lovelace”, starring “Big Love” (indeed!) alum Amanda Seyfried in the title role, is shaping up to be a pretty hot… awards contender. The script is terrific, and if Seyfried can nail the part as well as Andy Bellin and Merritt Johnson has written her, the audience will find themselves touched (hey! mind out of the gutter!) by Lovelace’s very ‘hard’ (oi!) life.
Here’s ten things that’ll have your creaming (sorry!) to see Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman’s “Lovelace” even more when it’s released in 2012 :
SPOILER WARNING! SPOILER WARNING! SPOILER WARNING!
1. Linda Lovelace (Amanda Seyfried). Most people only think of her as the shaft slurper from one of today’s most legendary porn films. After this, you’ll really feel for the woman, and you’ll believe that she was, as she said, simply a scared, sad young girl who was forced into a career she never wanted and an exercise regiment (if you will) that she didn’t enjoy.
This was one unhappy lady. Photographers would have to force Lovelace to smile (in one sequence she’s unable to put on a happy face for the ‘Deep Throat’ poster shoot because she doesn’t want to be judged, let alone have anyone see what she considers an unattractive mug; as luck would have it, Lovelace would tear up because of how beautiful the photographer ‘made her’ look on that particular shoot), people would have to force – sometimes leaving bruises – her into work, and as the film progresses we watch the abuse victim go from sweet, naive young girl with beautiful, natural features (her ‘freckles’ are her trademark) to a scared, scarred, bruised and drained thirty-something.
The film will open with Lovelace, at 23, when she was her most relaxed and confident (not that that means much), getting her photo taken… before she walks into the main hall of the Playboy Mansion, to be greeted by forty-something Hugh Hefner.
Lovelace develops a relationship with Traynor. About half-an-hour into the movie the gang become abruptly aware of the relationship when, at a party, they’re awoken by the banging of a headboard and moaning coming from a nearby room. There’s an instant attraction between Traynor and Lovelace, and the first half of the film explores how they came to be a couple. And later, enemies.
3. It’s a bimbo-palooza. Not unsurprisingly, considering some of the groups ties to both porn and crime, women are considered ‘meat’ more than anything. Not that any of the women in the picture are complaining – these bimbo’s are perfectly happy to share an oyster (in one scene, set at a restaurant, some fawning bimbo’s are lured to the guys’ table with the offering of an oyster/smooch chaser) with the rich and attractive. Lovelace is no fan of these types.
4. Lovelace is feisty and has a mind of her own. Just because she’s asked to sit on some wealthy fat cat’s lap, doesn’t mean she will. The star is constantly being told to make film financier Anthony Romano feel like he’s wanted, but she refuses to sink to bimbo level. Every time she says ‘no’, she pays the price.
5. Lovelace doesn’t enjoy sex. “Screwing around”, she says, is not what life is about and she would in all probability be quite happy not having it if she wasn’t paid so well to partake in it. In school, she says, she was known as ‘Miss Holy-Holy’ in the fact that she didn’t put out. She was as straight as an arrow. It’s only when she meets Harry Reems, a young, dashing twenty-something Jewish actor and her soon-to-be co-star in what’ll be a classic porno ‘Deep Throat’, that Lovelace begins to respect men a little more. He seems like a good guy. They meet in a scene set poolside, shortly before their first big scene together.
6. One of the more emotional scenes, and it should be a goodie, is when Lovelace is forced to undergo a lie-detector test by the publisher who is about to buy the story of Linda and Chuck Traynor’s relationship. Linda, emotional and hurting, recalls her tough upbringing (being beaten by her mother, played by Sharon Stone in flashbacks, as well as being an outsider) and her even tougher years playing punching-bag to Traynor, her ex-husband. You’ll really feel for Lovelace as she recalls stories of how she would be beaten if she refused to sleep with one of Traynor’s friends or refuse to star in a film of his.
7. A make-up woman is one of Linda’s closest confidents and saviours. She would help her not only look a lot better than she felt, but cover up the many bruises Linda had scored from her “old man” Traynor. Even the make-up woman narrowly escapes a run-in with hot-head Traynor.
8. A sequence at the end of the film, where Linda is being interviewed on Phil Donahue’s program about her book, shows just how horribly quick the people turned on the actress. Linda, complaining that she never enjoyed any aspect of her career or the fame and fortune that had come from it, tries to explain to a disbelieving audience that she was trapped and couldn’t escape. A caller by the name of Bill Harrison, who worked with Lovelace on one of her movies, calls in. He too finds it hard to believe that Linda simply just couldn’t leave the business – especially since she seemed so ‘into it’ when they made movies. Linda explains that she was brainwashed, manipulated and fooled by the horrible Mr Traynor – – – and my god, this guy really does get a beating in the film!
9. Lovelace’s statements, stemming from the release of her book, will conclude the film. In a nice sea change (much like the Russians suddenly cheering on Rocky instead of Drago in “Rocky IV”) she will be applauded for her remarks about treating women better, self-respect, and finding the courage to get out of that place of despair. And by the time the credits roll, most women in the audience will be tearing up… and the men will have a greater respect for these women in the movies they watch.
10. Now I suppose what you guys want to know is, will we be seeing Ms Seyfried naked in the movie? Well, yes – though I can’t imagine you’ll be seeing much more of her nude frame than you did in “Chloe”. The porn scenes will be tastefully shot – there will be lots of cutaways, by the sounds, and in some instances, like the bedroom scene between Lovelace and Traynor at the film’s beginning, it’ll all be doing with O/S sound – and Seyfried will likely only have to ditch her top in a few scenes (like the photo shoot scene, where she begins to tweak her nipples to ‘improve’ the picture). If only because a large part of the film takes place ‘after’ Lovelace’s film career, the film won’t be packed with nudie shots. Either way, blokes should go home happy.
The movie is shaping up to be something rather terrific; “Lovelace” will be one of 2012’s highlights – mark my words.