Pornography is increasingly part of mainstream culture and Wonderland, starring VAL KILMER, is the latest film about the subject. Paul Dale investigates the phenomenon.
trictly speaking. llinu/er/um/ isn't a porno nostalgia flick. Hell. it isn‘t eyen sexy. What James (‘ox‘s lilm does do. howeycr unwittingly though. is pose the question of how did we get from there to here'.’ lirom a world of (;(_) coyers featuring men in Ralph Lauren boxers and preppy deck shoes to the chic reclamation of the porn star as a style icon acceptable enough to sit on the ayerage coffee table. When did porn enter the mainstream and. more importantly. when did the machinations of the underground industry that spawned these below-counter rewind jobs really become more interesting than getting your rocks offon a rainy night in'.’ The answer is that there is no diyision. Those who loyc porn (straight/queer porn. that is) still make up healthy portions of any census that gets filled in. (ietting a little
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Porn first came off the top shelf with the publication of Madonna’s ‘Sex’ in 1992 (bottom). Rockbitch (main pic) brought pornographic stage acts into rock music. Boogie Nights (middle) and the new film Wonderland (top) both explore the myth of porn actor John Holmes.
historical perspectiye on the subject is a whole different steam hath and for that we need to go back. maybe not as far as Philip l.ar|xin's year /.ero l‘)(i3, but somewhere close,
It was the acute. acerbic broadcaster and arch (‘hristian fundamentalist Malcolm N‘ltiggeridgc who wrote that ‘if the purpose of pornography is to excite sexual desire. it is unnecessary for the young. incomenient for the middle aged and unseemly for the old.‘ .‘V’luggeridge may have been a fairly rigorous curmudgeon but with this brief humorous deconstruction of an entire industry he did manage to highlight the contradictions of the public‘s attitude prior to the porn renaissance. Whether consciously or not. it was always regarded as the lowest of the low class hobbies. no matter how many scholarly tomes or arty films with Hefner minks we