Love and Lust in LA
Going under the covers in the search for real sex and intimacy
About a year ago, the California-based director duo Will Hoffman and Julius Metoyer began exploring how sex is portrayed in film, and found themselves unsatisfied with their discoveries. LOVER sees them defining the essence of the sexual act in its truest form. Casting a friends and Craigslist finds in LA, the pair embarked on a week-long mission to document the couples in the intimate surroundings of their bedrooms. Below, Hoffman and Metoyer discuss sex and raw intimacy in, and on, film.
“Sex scenes in narrative films are always so-so, and porn is just on a whole other level of insincerity. We wanted to make a film that wasn’t about watching sex, but instead, triggered memories of the way you felt when emotionally surrendered with a partner. That moment where you let go of judgment or self-consciousness and just open yourself up to impulse and desire.”
On sex in film
“Porn seems to be a style of filmmaking that is focused solely on sexually graphic and explicit imagery. People love it and it’s proven its popularity, but its specific representation of sex makes all sex seem like this dirty thing. If your only goal is to arouse someone then you should make porn. If you want to try to make someone think or feel something else, you have to create a different set of rules, most of which we made up along the way.”
On filming sex
“We quickly realized that having our couples turn anywhere from 90 to 180 degrees was a lot easier than breaking down the camera and repositioning the lens. To maximize our footage we had to speak up and say things like, ‘Can you do that but put your heads toward the window?’ Speaking up was weird at first, but you learned that there was a right time to ask and a wrong time ask.”