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Guilty Pleasures

curated by Margherita Fontana

This retrospective is entitled as the English expression which describes things that we love doing but of which we are secretly ashamed of. Among these unmentionable pleasures there are obviously some films that we like watching, preferably alone, away from anybody’s judgement. Although we can be reluctant in revealing them, among these titles there are often works of extraordinary autobiographical and emotional value. Even the most passionate cinephile, whose film history and good taste are his strength, will no doubt have a secret list of “guilty pleasures”, which are at the very least sophisticated.
To some extent, this ambiguity between embarrassment and fondness is common to another film category, the erotic one. In this case, it is difficult to talk about quality, precisely because erotic films, also the non-pornographic ones, are born with a precise intention: to stimulate our imagination and our senses, taking us in a mind-set where objectiveness has no place. But is this not a characteristic of sex in itself, to take each one of us to discover parts of ourselves that would otherwise remain undiscovered? The aim of this retrospective is to develop a series of short films of erotic nature that explore sex away from modern and patriarchal conventions, looking at it more as an instrument of self-discovery, self-assertation and, why not, revolution.
In the hope that Guilty Pleasures may once and for all get rid of shame and guilt, and may be proudly screamed from the rooftops, just as a political statement.