Warning: SPOILERS for Blonde are ahead!
There has been a lot of talk about how unsettling the film adaptation of Joyce Carol Oates’ book Blonde has been to watch scene after scene. This historical fiction perception of Marilyn Monroe’s life is about the abuse that was speculated the Hollywood starlet endured. But after months of pondering why Blonde was rated NC-17, we may have gotten the answer with the sexually brutal scene with viewers saying it went too far.
Towards the third part of Blonde, the hardcore scene that probably earned Blonde an NC-17 rating shows Marilyn Monroe, played by Ana de Armas, being escorted to President John F. Kennedy’s room, where she is urged by silent government agents to go to the bathroom to fresh up. Then, she’s ushered into Kennedy’s room, where he’s on the phone lying on the bed. Kennedy motions the Blonde Bombshell to give him a handjob, ironically refuting other women in his life he “molested” while on the phone.
While he only talks to Monroe to tell her to hurry up or keep going, he gets frustrated with how long she's taking and orders her to perform oral sex on him. There may not be any nudity shown, but director Andrew Dominik shows a close-up of Monroe’s face the whole time during the act with a voiceover narration of Ana de Armas saying that “Marilyn” is doing this and that Norma Jean Baker, Monroe's true persona, wasn’t even present.
People on Twitter couldn’t help but be offended by this sexually graphic scene. @underherskins tweeted a photo of a Carly Shay from iCarly looking painfully at her computer screen with the below caption:
Well, Andrew Dominick promised there would be something in Blonde “to offend everyone.” It looks like he got his wish. @theeSNYDERVERSE felt this scene was “disrespectful” and stopped watching the movie after this scene played. This user clearly watched the film longer than most, whereas according to Movieguide, many Netflix users turned off Blonde after 20 minutes.
@AngieJolieStan was hoping that the Kennedy family would sue Netflix and everyone behind Blonde for insinuating that JFK raped Marilyn Monroe. Speculations of an affair between Marilyn Monroe and JFK came after Monroe sang sweetly to the President the “Happy Birthday” song at Madison Square Garden, but nothing was ever confirmed that the two of them being in a serious sexual relationship.
@taboodevil called Blonde “a sick horror movie” while listing all of the things the movie went wrong with. Other than the JFK scene, this user mentioned the nude scenes, the “anti-abortion” scene of Monroe talking to an unborn CGI baby, glamorizing her mental health and more.
Blonde currently has a 42% on Rotten Tomatoes with a 32% audience score. While the critics have been praising Ana de Armas’ performance, Twitter responses have been brutal about the movie as a whole. A lot of responses were saying not to watch Blonde, calling it words like “sexist” and “disrespectful,” as well as saying it does not do a good job in honoring the life of Marilyn Monroe. This will make me wonder if Blonde has a shot during awards season, or maybe if solely Ana de Armas will get the awards buzz for her performance.
JFK forcing Marilyn Monroe to perform a blow job for him seemed to be the final straw to a lot of Netflix subscribers. If your curiosity piqued you about what is making people on Twitter so angry about this scene, you can still watch Blonde on your Netflix subscription.
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Just your average South Floridian cinephile who believes the pen is mightier than the sword.