I read a piece in Folha today which basically said
the sky is blue a prostitute’s life is far from the glamor of the big screen. With such a statement, they are giving a nod to the recent film Bruna Surfistinha (trailer), based on the best-selling book by Raquel Pacheco (aka Bruna), who was a prostitute from 17 to 21 years of age. Over one million people have already gone to see the film and as you can see from the most voted comment on the trailer page, prostitution is a dignified profession, apparently.
A few weeks ago, I saw the film and while the cinematography wasn’t bad enough to the point where I turned it off, the story imitates
BBB life. When we live in a performance culture where we must post the smartest tweet or the sexiest photo to Facebook, a chicken-or-the-egg cycle is created where no one cares knows who is selling what to whom.
Traditionally, the male gaze is at play where media is concerned and when it is consumed. That is to say that the audience is shown the perspective of a heterosexual man towards the object of desire, typically a curvaceous woman. The cycle occurs when the woman has grown up with a male gaze and acts as if she were that object of desire. While there’s nothing wrong with being desired, media shows us that positive images of women should strictly be confined to that of eye-candy (Snoop Dogg’s latest music video, anyone?). In the case the image is that of a strong woman, then she must “know what she wants and how to get it”…like Bruna Surfistinha.
In one particular scene, Bruna’s character gets caught drugged out and in the car with her prostitute friends, who have all been drinking. They get pulled over and Bruna decides to show the police officer who is really in charge as she proceeds to give him oral sex. We then see her
walk of shame proud strut back to her friend’s car while they applaud and cheer her abilities.
While I waited for the film’s climax, I was ultimately left without. In the end, the film is about a girl with a rather normal upbringing who decides to prostitute herself instead of deal with how she feels inside. It says you, too, can be moderately successful, physically adored and adorned…all it takes is a little bravado.
“Luckily”, Folhateen is there to parent young readers on the realities of becoming a harlot. Folha’s article (given that a teen these days can actually read the entire piece without multitasking or stopping after one paragraph) tells readers that life on the streets isn’t all it’s cracked up to be (duh!). What do you think an impressionable young woman will be more likely to enjoy, a “long” article in a newspaper or a trending film about a famous prostitute played by a hot actress?