Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn - The Feminist Satire Of Our Times

Updated: Nov 21, 2021


The 20th Cornwall Film Festival begins on the 15th of November. Featuring the best of national and international cinema, the festival will close with Radu Jude’s Golden Bear winner Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn. Romania submitted the film as its official entry for the 2022 Oscars.


Dubbed as one of the most provocative films of the year, Bad Luck Banging follows a school teacher named Emi whose career and reputation are threatened after a personal sex tape is leaked on the internet. Emi faces pressure from angry parents who demand her immediate dismissal from the school. What follows is a thought-provoking, comedic discussion of sex and society.


Jude expertly combines comedy and social commentary in this radical vision that tackles stereotypes, sex, and societal norms. A work of feminist social satire, Jude's work illuminates the potential of film beyond entertainment; it exemplifies the medium’s power to shed light on important and controversial issues like revenge porn and sexual education.


Jude’s work stands out in a crowd of recent feminist films such as Promising Young Woman (2020) and The Nightingale (2018). While Emerald Fennell’s award-winning film gave us a dramatic portrait of a feminist avenger, it misguidedly stole the focus away from the rape victim’s own story and shifted it to the act of revenge itself. On the other hand, Jennifer Kent’s Nightingale empowered the protagonist to avenge herself, proving to be a more effective, albeit exponentially more violent, illustration of feminist characters taking control of their life.




Carey Mulligan in Promising Young Woman

However, violence doesn’t necessarily make or break a revenge film. Cult classics like Jennifer’s Body (2009) showcase how impactful the horror genre can be as a vessel for feminist storytelling. While its graphic scenes include bloody violence, the film incorporates comedic elements that hit satirical notes, underscoring sex and gender stereotypes.


Jude’s latest cleverly steers clear of violence and traditional narrative techniques to bring forth an entirely original film that takes social satire to a whole new level. Divided into three parts, the film’s triptych structure is equally entertaining and enlightening. The first part introduces the audience to Emi’s situation after her sex tape is leaked.


In the second part, Jude breaks away from the storyline completely, presenting us with a visual dictionary of terms related to Romanian history and sex. The third and final part is Emi’s school meeting with frustrated parents and the consequent discourse which exposes society’s hypocritical and sexist attitudes.




Although set in Romania, the film’s discussion of social stereotypes and sex positive ideas is universal in nature. Coming from a Middle Eastern culture, I could easily picture Emi’s scenario’s taking place in any Arab country. With the rise in feminist, sex positive approaches to everything from porn to dating, the film challenges society’s archaic perceptions and successfully reveals its outdated misconceptions about sex and gender roles.


Don’t miss the CFF closing film Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn. the film will screen on 21 November at Falmouth's Princess Pavilion, book your tickets now!



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