Ana De Armas Knows Blonde Sex Scenes Are 'Going To Go Viral' For All The Wrong Reasons

When it first came out that Andrew Dominik's adaptation of the Joyce Carol Oates novel "Blonde" would be rated NC-17, it made many eyebrows raise. That is a rating rarely given by the Motion Picture Association (née of America), and when it is given, filmmakers most often succumb to the will of the organization and cut out the "questionable" moments so they can attain an R rating. But in this case, Dominik and Netflix held firm, and "Blonde" got the NC-17. Why is rated that? The official description is for "Some Sexual Content," which is a nice way of saying that there is going to be quite a bit of fairly explicit nudity and sex.

"Blonde" is a somewhat fictionalized account of the life of Marilyn Monroe, someone objectified and taken advantage of by the global public since people first saw her image. To tell that story as honestly as possible, which is what Andrew Dominik was aiming at, avoiding Marilyn's naked body would feel disingenuous. Ana de Armas, who plays Marilyn Monroe in the film, was fully aware of that going into the film and agreed to be a part of that brutal honesty. As she said in a recent interview with Variety, "I did things in this movie I would have never done for anyone else, ever. I did it for her, and I did it for Andrew."

Unfortunately, we live in the age of the Internet, where context goes to die. This means that all of these scenes featuring de Armas in incredibly intimate moments that are often quite harrowing will be plucked out of the film to be shared on social media platforms everywhere for people to ogle her naked body, free from the scenes' intentions. And de Armas knows this, much to her dismay.

Objectification never stops

How we talk about nudity and sex goes in circles. Some think having a naked body on screen is exploitative. Some think that is a puritanical belief, and that filmmakers should be free to reflect reality. I find myself in the second camp most of the time. Yes, plenty of nudity on film is exploitative and has even been captured through illicit means, but if it is handled with care, I don't see what the big deal is. However, the Mr. Skinification of the Internet lingers in the back of my mind, which is an unfortunate byproduct of some people's obsession with objectification. I mean, YouTube was created because people wanted to see Janet Jackson's nipple from her Super Bowl halftime performance, after all.

Ana de Armas is fully aware this will happen with her in "Blonde." As she lamented to Variety:

"I know what's going to go viral, and it's disgusting. It's upsetting just to think about it. I can't control it; you can't really control what they do and how they take things out of context. I don't think it gave me second thoughts; it just gave me a bad taste to think about the future of those clips."

This isn't de Armas' first rodeo. She's appeared nude in previous films, and those moments get passed around online regularly. However, those other films don't require the amount of distancing from the context as a film like "Blonde." Plenty of us will be able to understand why Ana de Armas has decided to make this decision, as a way to serve this woman who really existed and her story. You just have to cut out the noise, which I hope she is able to do.