Dakota Fanning is further distancing herself from her young fan base with her latest role in The Runaways, an R-rated, sexually-charged movie about the ’70s all-female band by the same name. The band’s leader is out-lesbian Joan Jett (played by Twilight movie star Kristen Stewart). Fanning plays the band’s lead singer, Cherie Currie.
The film, labeled a biographical picture (biopic) of the group, uses Cherie Currie’s book, Neon Angel, as a partial blueprint. Thus, Fanning’s characterization of Currie dominates the movie.
Both Jett and Currie were abandoned by their parents, and a male manager (Kim Fowley) envisions them as being the first female rock band to compete with their male hard rock counterparts. He teaches them to titillate men as part of their performance, and their concerts are driven with sexual content and clothes better suited for a strip club.
Fowley tells them that rock ‘n roll is all about sex and drugs and creates that image in every part of their act. In the movie, he attempts to toughen them by having dog feces thrown at them on stage to represent out-of-control, drugged-out, rowdy rock fans. He introduces them to a variety of drugs including cocaine and alcohol. While keeping them in a drugged stupor on the road and during the concerts, he is busy stealing their money.
With drugs and alcohol controlling their lives, sexual inhibitions are destroyed, and the characters become little more than animals in heat. Lesbianism and bisexuality are strong themes, and the only thing the girls seem to be able to control is their choice of sexual partners.
One scene that will shock parents is the lesbian kiss and steamy scene between Fanning and Stewart. Runaways director Floria Sigismondi says that actresses Fanning and Stewart “understood their physical intimacy was crucial for the film.” Sigismondi goes on to say that she could have used 15-year-old Fanning topless had she been just a little older.
Movie Guide’s Dr. Ted Baehr (www.movieguide.org) gives the film the worst rating of “Abhorrent,” which is described on his website to include “intentional blasphemy, evil, gross immorality, and/or worldview problems.”
If your children are star struck by Dakota Fanning or Kristen Stewart, it would be wise to read their interview about the movie at http://www.cinematical.com/2010/01/25/kristen-stewart-and-dakota-fanning-talk-the-runaways/. Their conversation is littered with the f-word and sexually charged language.
People expecting Bella from Twilight (Kristen Stewart) or sweet Dakota Fanning from Dreamer are in for a shock with stars’ promotion of gutter language, crude behavior beyond belief, and teenage lesbianism. This film is being strongly promoted by MTV, and a CD has been released. With performances scheduled by the original band, the public will have ample opportunity to experience the unbelievable vulgarity of this film in many ways.
The Runaways had a limited “run” on March 19 and releases nationwide today, April 9. If the film is playing in your area, call your local theater and tell them this pornographic movie does not meet your family’s standards.
Donna Miller is Issue Specialist for Pornography with Concerned Women for America of North Carolina.