Moviegoers love to be shocked by legitimate onscreen steaming violent sex and Elizabeth Wood”s White Girl, who made a bit of a fuss at Sundance, sure supplies for some discussion on film ratings.

Apparently a semi-autobiographical affair, White Girl introduces us to the world of Leah, a young NYC student arriving in the Hood. Seduced the by next door dealer, she digs deep to get him out of jail after an evening gone wrong, slipping into a world of sex, drugs and depravity. She becomes a consenting prey to most of the disasters coming to her.

Sexually speaking this train goes straight (and graphically) to the point, right from the start, showing anything God forbids. It exhibits a dark side of human being with characters that are not specially likeable although we are introduced to their more sensitive side in the later part.

As pointed out in interviews by Wood , the notion of white privilege is apparently the subject here. she said about the reaction to the film: “It’s interesting to me that sexuality upsets people more than talking about race, privilege or even sexism.” If that’s so, why did she put so much graphic sex in it? She surely gets our attention on that point. But, throughout what is a collection of ostentatious clichés, we are in, almost exclusively, for a dose of would-be-provocative moments. Spending much time on sensationalism, and not enough on what she is claiming to initiate as a commentary on social inequities, the director gets us pretty confused on what is the whole point of this ride.

White Girl sure has its moments but it clearly is a self-indulgent piece.


Montreal Screenings:

Phi Centre
December 1, 2, 12, 13 and 15, 7:30 PM
$11.75 (seniors and students: $9.50) at
407 Saint-Pierre Street, Montreal