Watching Cloud 9 on TV (BBC 4) made me realise that the only depictions of sexuality, or sex scenes, with older people that I've seen are on German cinema*. Which makes me realise what a taboo it is! The famous Sex-&-the-City sex-with-bra-on was so sanitised in comparison.
So - what do you all think? Should it be acknowledged? Should it be seen on screen? Is it actually disgusting?
*twice! I don't think German cinema is obsessed with this!
if anyone sees me posting in this thread will they please pull me away from the keyboard and sober me up, as I will get myself banned, I just know it
The vast majority of sex scenes in films are very little to do with the relationship between two people and everything to do with titillating the viewer. Since most people apparently want their sexual fantasies played out by desirable bodies, directors almost never use less than beautiful bodies when they want to depict a positive encounter.
The average punter would assume (probably correctly) that if the bodies were in some way risible - ie less than perfect - the audience is supposed to interpret the scene as either mocking or embarrassing. Given, then, the imperfections that come with age, it would be a very skilled and sensitive director who could show passion and tenderness and still keep the audience on side.
tl/dr: people find the idea of their parents having sex both embarrassing and ludicrous!
Sadly the idea of me having sexual encounters is both embarrassing and ludicrous these days. Embarrassing to admit that too.
I think Victoria Wood captured this topic very well....
...."beat me on the bottom with a womans weekly"...
I dont think any cinema is obsessed with this. I think that its is visibly under explored.
A british film Venus explores older/ younger sexuality beautifully. But sex amongst Ouldwans and Ouldfellas remains noticeably invisible, as far as i know!
That men go off sex as they get older?
well...no...that was just a lighthearted slightly OT digression. ...
But in fairness, unless the story line in a film is about older people and sex, I don't think there's a whole lot of money to be made from the topic.....and that's what films do at a basic level...make money....hence the lack of examples out there?
My point was not so much about films, commercialism or whatever, but rather that in other cultures it is accepted that older people have sexuality, that this isn't confined to the young. (There was a thread here somewhere about a young man who stopped talking to his mother when she told him she was pregnant with his younger sister.) The myth in this culture is that older people are asexual; and this myth is backed up in films and other cultural iconography, and so is perpetuated.
There was a guy who worked in Hollywood (California, not Co. Down) who said that being surrounded by beautiful people made him more dismissive of ordinary-looking people, including his own wife. And so it is probably important that films etc reflect reality as much as they are aspirational or idealistic. The idealistic version gives us a very distorted view of reality, if it isn't balanced by a more realistic view.
To support this i would show Japanese societyhttp://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1818203,00.html
I would also say that from what i can see japan has a long tradition of elder sex. I'm thinking about pillow book images from 19th century, ,, i tried looking these up online but cant find the ones I mean. Anyway the point i wish to make is that sexuality among olderpeople is noticeably invisisble in western culture.
JC, GV...good posts both.... my question at this point is: What is the real state of "older" sexual behaviour in Ireland/Western society..? Any research out there you have access to?
Films don't necessarily reflect reality..especially due to their commercial nature...would be interesting to see some studies on this just to contrast how far away films are from reflecting reality..
I meant actual research into sexual habits of older couples...here's an article from the BBC in 2008...it would appear that research is relatively thin on the ground in this area....
full text here:http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7494731.stm
When we discuss sexuality and the older person, I wonder what age most people on here would consider "older" from a sexual perspective.