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July 2021

Featuring Mary Rock
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Photo: G. Lefkowitz/ PictureLux / The Hollywood Archive / Alamy Stock Photo
Featured Article

Porn in Film: Who Got It Right?

From Boogie Nights to The Girl Next Door, we grade the big-screen portrayals of the adult industry.

Pornography and the people who make it are fascinating topics for mainstream movies, but how accurate have these portrayals been? We took a random sampling of movies and characters and, in a completely unscientific and opinionated way, passed judgment on some of our favorite performances from porn-oriented movies … with letter grades for accuracy. 

Becky Barnett (Boogie Nights): As portrayed by Nicole Ari Parker, Becky’s no-nonsense and businesslike. Her standard greeting—an outstretched hand while huskily announcing her name— is haughty, but not rude. She, unlike the other porn stars of Boogie Nights, is diligent about washing her vagina—and note that she doesn’t call it a pussy—before performing a scene. She’s all class. She’s also very proud of her “look,” which she describes as “chocolate love.” Becky’s got it all together … except when it comes to men. When she hooks up with that Jheri-curled bullshit artist Jerome, the audience can’t help but shriek, “Becky Barnett, noooooooo!” But she’s a porn star, so of course she does—which makes the character pretty accurate. Grade: B+

meet monica velour
Photo: Anchor Bay Films / AF archive / Alamy Stock Photo

Monica Velour (Meet Monica Velour): Monica Velour is on the downside of her porn career. Like too many of her colleagues, she never set any money aside and has always lived in the moment, but now those moments are mostly humiliating “personal appearances” at dingy rural strip clubs—and the guys who go there don’t tip. As played by Kim “Samantha from Sex and the City” Cattrall, we feel for Monica’s plight, but it’s still a weirdly written part that seems to ignore all the ways an older porn star can monetize herself, from selling merch to escorting to … well, you name it. A good effort by Cattrall, though. Grade: B

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