The Internet Movie Database website, popularly known as IMDB, claimed in a new parental guidance warning that the new Netflix Original film Cuties contained scenes that were “lawfully defined as pedophilia.” Though IMDB has since deleted most of its original statement on the film, much of the review has been captured in screenshots on social media and in a report by Newsweek.
The controversial movie centers on a young French girl of Senegalese descent named Amy who rebels against her traditional upbringing by joining a group of young dancers. According to IMDB, the dance routines are incredibly sexual, with one even including partial nudity.
“During one of the many highly sexualized and erotic dance scenes that purposefully exploit and objectify numerous scantily clad under age girls, one of the female child dancers lifts up her cropped top to fully display her bare breast,” the notice originally claimed. “This is lawfully defined as pedophilia and can be extremely distressing to many viewers.”
Other dance scenes in the film included the pre-teens gyrating against the floor, placing their hands suggestively on their upper thighs, and spreading their legs.
The advisory noted that this was not the only problematic scene in Cuties. In another, a pair of leather pants worn by an 11-year-old girl was “forcefully pulled down,” exposing her underwear and parts of her derrière. Other distressing clips included the young girls mimicking sexual acts seen on online videos.
The questionable content has sparked outrage from the public, and #CancelNetflix was trending Thursday morning in response to the suggestive aspects of the film. As of noon, the hashtag had been tweeted over 50,000 times.
That said, the film has not been without its supporters. Advocates have pointed out that a major aspect of the movie is the discussion surrounding the sexualization of children and how social media often fuels the process.
“The subject of Cuties isn’t twerking; it’s children, especially poor and nonwhite children, who are deprived of the resources… to put sexualized media and pop culture into perspective,” wrote film critic Richard Brody of The New Yorker.
In addition, proponents have noted that Cuties is a Sundance Film Festival winner and was written and directed by a Muslim woman of Senegalese descent.
This is not the first time that the film has come under fire. Earlier this summer, Netflix was forced to apologize after the first poster for the offering showcased the 11-year-olds in suggestive poses and skimpy attire.
“We’re deeply sorry for the inappropriate artwork that we used… It was not OK,” the streaming giant admitted.
Netflix garnered headlines last week after inking a reported $100 million deal with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.