Originally Published at NBC News
By Francesca Gariano
Netflix is receiving more backlash on social media after the French film “Cuties” debuted on the streaming platform Wednesday.
The film, directed by Maïmouna Doucouré, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January. “Cuties” follows an 11-year-old girl living in Paris who wants to join a local “free-spirited dance crew.” Despite her conservative upbringing, she rebels against her parents and joins the troupe.
The movie’s U.S. poster drew outrage online in August, with critics saying it highlights society’s sexualization of girls and young women.
The film’s release has also sparked the trending hashtag #CancelNetflix on Twitter, but the streaming service is urging critics to watch the film.
“Cuties is a social commentary against the sexualization of young children,” a Netflix spokesperson said in a statement to TODAY. “It’s an award winning film and a powerful story about the pressure young girls face on social media and from society more generally growing up – and we’d encourage anyone who cares about these important issues to watch the movie.”
Special interest groups and politicians have made public statements against Netflix and the film itself. The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) and the Parents Television Council (PTC) released statements regarding “Cuties” earlier this week, condemning the platform for the movie’s release and the content of the film.