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SXSW (At Home): 'Modern Whore' Review

Movie Reviews

SXSW (At Home): ‘Modern Whore’ Review

‘Modern Whore’ is a contemporary take on the world’s oldest profession.

AIPT will continue some of its planned coverage of SXSW. We have been in contact with creators and their representatives in order to continue to give films coverage. We will respect all embargoes and work to give these films and our readers the coverage we had planned.

There have been many stories told from the point of view of sex workers. They all tend to follow the same thread. Woman needs easy money and reluctantly enters the sex trade. She ends ups learning a hard lesson that changes her view on life and makes her a better person. From hard hitting documentaries to silly comedies, it is a premise that has been revisited often.

Based on the book of the same name, Modern Whore is a refreshingly candid look at today’s world of escorts and “hobbyists”. The movie centers around Andrea Werhun who is the author of the titular book. Werhun worked as an escort under the name of Mary Ann. When the university student decided to look up reviews about herself online, what she found was simultaneously humorous and demeaning.

The documentary short looks like an exploitation movie out of the 1970s. The film is grainy with vivid colors. The text looks like something that would play from a trailer before a midnight feature. The narrator even refers to Werhun as the “hooker with a heart of gold” in a nice touch. Director Nicole Bazuin immediately lets the audience know her film is going to be tongue in cheek.

This tone continues when Werhun describes her experiences with a client known as Mr. CEO. Werhun has a natural charisma that comes across and listening to her talk about her life is very entertaining. Modern Whore fumbles slightly when it tries to take on darker themes like objectification and control. The documentary just does not flow as well as it should (especially the ending). That being said, Werhun’s self awareness and honesty make Modern Whore an interesting watch.

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